Most people have a rice cooker at home. It’s a versatile piece of kitchen appliance. Because it lets you cook rice better than a stove and in more than one way. Really, you could eat different recipes of rice each day of the week. Sometimes steamy or sticky or porridge-like.
It makes sublime and delicious rice quickly. The point of buying and using a rice cooker is to save time and effort. It works with all rice grain types – soft, hard, white, brown, mixed. And it’s non-stick and computerized so it doesn’t burn or ruin the recipe.
But the area where some people always get stuck is this. What is the best rice cooker brand? You have familiar brands such as Zojirushi, Hamilton, and Toshiba. But are they the best of the best?
You’ll be surprised to know that rice cooker brands are very popular. You can rely on these as much as the big names. These are Aroma, Cuckoo, and Tiger.
However, to choose from these best rice cooker brands better. It’s time to take you for a quick, but helpful, rice cooker ride. Get ready to learn a bit more about the famous rice cooker brands on the market.
But before that, let’s get the basics out of the way.
What Is A Rice Cooker?
Nobody likes to buy something they don’t know anything about. Rice cookers have been around since 1955. In fact, you’d be amazed to know that Toshiba first invented the automatic rice cooker. But in those days, it was famously referred to as “Suihanki.”
The Suihanki was used to accelerate the cooking of rice. This means boiling and steaming rice for a variety of dishes.
They were (and still are) electric. So you could simply wash the rice, add it to the cooker, and add water. The rice cooker will do the rest. No need for straining boiled rice or lifting the lid every few minutes to check if it’s done.
Once the rice is completely cooked, the rice cooker automatically stops. The built-in thermostat, heating source, and other sensors ensure smooth and consistent performance.
Since recent times, a rice cooker can do more than just cook rice. It prepares rice in a variety of ways. As you all must already know that white and brown rice are not prepared in the same way.
Brown rice takes longer to cook than white rice. And if you do it inaccurately, you can make brown rice too hard or soggy. White rice, comparatively, is easier to make. But not if you’re cooking rice as porridge or sushi, etc.
So modern rice cookers ensure the right temperature to cook both white or brown rice. It doesn’t overcook rice so it doesn’t become soggy. Nor does it undercook it so it becomes hard and chewy.
More expensive rice cookers also cook other ingredients such as lentils. You can cook rice with lentils at the same time. Or you can make soup in a rice cooker of lentils and other vegetables such as sweet potatoes, carrots, celery.
From this, it’s easier to understand why rice cookers are so important.
Top Rice Cooker Brands to Choose From
Now that you know what a rice cooker is. Let’s set out to find the best rice cooker brand for you out of so many exciting options.
Aroma is a cookware manufacturing company. It also manufactures other essential kitchen appliances such as toasters, blenders, food dehydrators, etc.
This American brand is ideally known for its rice cookers. It goes all the way to 1992 when they introduced rice cookers as portable cookware. Even though Aroma Housewares Company was started in 1977 focusing on ovens in and around California.
Aroma rice cookers are super affordable to buy. These are usually beginner-friendly rice cookers. They are smaller in size, easier to use, and faster to clean.
Now, Aroma Housewares Company offers a long line of interesting products. Such as ice-cream makers, toasters, slow cookers, coffee makers, water heaters. This is a familiar cookware brand for the budget-minded family.
It comes in sizes that are perfect for a small kitchen. You can buy a conventional rice cooker with a few headstrong features. Or you can go for a mini or a digital cooker with more multi-functional features.
Thanks to Aroma’s programmable functions, cooking rice is simpler and faster. You no longer have to keep an eye out. Instead, you can carry on with your chores knowing the rice is well-taken-care-of.
The biggest advantage of using a Zojirushi rice cooker is its practical design. It’s the best top of the line rice cooker brand out there. So many convenient features and such fancifully useful buttons.
Zojirushi started with its vacuum bottle in 1918. The bearer of the torch, it made its mark for its cutting-edge technology. Its “vacuum in a bottle” was an astounding creation of its time.
Soon after, this Osaka, Japan-based company started manufacturing other appliances. One of their top-selling products was (you guessed it!) rice cookers.
It was perfect for families and senior citizens of the country. If you think about it, Zojirushi has a line of user-friendly and satisfying rice cookers. They’re multi-functional but they vow to uncomplicate the process of cooking rice.
A closer look into their product line and you’ll see striking features.
Such as pressure cooking technology. It uses high heat, soaking, and steaming to enhance rice’s flavor. This not only reduces time but also improves the overall texture of the rice.
That’s not all. It promises efficient use of energy to generate a higher temperature. But using less energy and ensuring the rice stays hot and fresh.
Zojirushi rice cookers also come with pre-programmed functions. You can cook the rice 10 minutes longer, soak, and keep the rice warm. You can pick from conventional, Micom, Pressure plus Micom, and IH plus Micom rice cookers.
Tiger rice cookers are known for their induction rice cookers. They are cheaper to buy than Zojirushi rice cookers. But in terms of design, Tiger rice cookers are more space-consuming.
But they offer foolproof and useful features, just the same. Tiger bears some resemblance to Zojirushi. The Tiger Corporation started in Osaka, Japan in 1923. Vacuum bottles was its first official product.
Gradually it moved on to other cookware products. Such as rice cookers, water heaters, and other commercial kitchen appliances. As I’ve mentioned before, their induction heating system is quite impressive.
It offers to cook rice in a variety of ways. The inner pot is run by multiple temperature adjustments. And Tiger rice cookers are also known for their synchronized cooking features. This means you can cook all types of rice quickly.
Tiger rice cookers are also super speedy. So it’s multi-cooking functions are programmed to reduce energy costs. But there’s a hierarchy to follow in Tiger rice cookers.
For extra functionality, you can purchase the high-end product line. These include features like the keep warm function, ‘Tacook’ synchronized cooking, and detachable parts.
You can trust Hamilton Beach rice cookers because they know everything about home cooking. It’s no exaggeration when somebody tells you this.
“No home is complete without at least one Hamilton Beach appliance.”
Home cooks love Hamilton Beach for its simplicity and easy-to-use cookware. It started in America in 1910. As the top designer and marketer of kitchen appliances. Slowly, it gave in to manufacture and market the best home appliances.
Including blenders, mixers, toasters, slow cookers, and other interesting products. It’s also quite famous for its coffee makers and air purifiers. Major competitors of this North American brand are some brands you’ve probably heard of. Like Cuisinart and Black & Decker.
So clearly this is an all-encompassing and versatile brand. But what about their rice cookers?
Hamilton rice cookers are simple and convenient to use. No complex features to speak of. It’s the perfect rice cooker for quick use. So minimal features, simple touch-and-go buttons, and efficient performance.
The best part about using Hamilton rice cookers is the size. They offer a whopping range of 2 to 20 cups. And they’re so affordable even if you buy a more high-end rice cooker.
In Hamilton Beach, extra functionality doesn’t cost as much. You can buy a pre-programmed electric pressure rice cooker with a large capacity. And it still won’t feel like an extravagant purchase.
That’s the beauty of such homely products. They don’t cost as much and yet, they last for a long, long time!
Cuckoo Electronics is a cookware-specific kitchen brand. Specializing in cookware, especially Korean-style rice cookers, Cuckoo is a famous brand. It started in 1978 so it’s a relatively fresh rice cooker brand. Similar to Aroma rice cookers in that sense.
Making a great impact in South Korea as the top-selling rice cooker brand. Cuckoo rice cookers made their way to America in Los Angeles, California. Now it’s spread across the world in Southeast Asia too!
So what is it about Cuckoo rice cookers that make them so popular?
Cuckoo rice cookers use both induction and pressure cooking. The products vary from price and functionality. You can buy a Cuckoo rice cooker for less amount. But this only means it will boast of fewer advanced functions than a high-priced model.
Cuckoo rice cookers are premium picks. They suit a seasoned chef who wants to cook a variety of rice dishes. And they also suit a beginner who eats plain, soft white rice every day for weeks.
It is also worth noting the Cuckoo rice cookers offer lightning-fast cooking. So it not only cooks rice well, but it also cooks it faster than most other rice cooker brands. The best dish and complicated dish that Cuckoo can make is sushi. With excellent cooking settings, it makes the most complex of rice recipes seem easy.
Between low-priced and high-priced models, the premium choice is best.
It delivers rice in a variety of flavors. It incorporates more modern ways of cooking rice with the traditional flavor of rice. This means you get to cook rice faster but with none of the trials and errors.
Toshiba is Japan’s favorite household appliance. The products are easy to use, practical, and long-lasting. Not to forget, efficiency is also Toshiba’s number one priority.
Other products that Toshiba is popular for are ovens, air fans, dishwashers, and washing machines. As I said, Toshiba is quite a versatile brand. It focuses on improving the quality of life of traditional cooking methods.
The design of the Toshiba rice cookers is simple and minimal. You can buy rice cookers that are budget-friendly. And buy rice cookers that are premium choices. They offer more advanced functions. Such as quick induction heating, extra warming, and intelligent functions.
What’s Your Pick?
So which rice cooker brand did you like best? For us, every brand has something special to offer. The best thing is, no matter what you pick, you can cook rice simply and effortlessly.
The difference in each brand, however, is more about personal preferences. And some extra features such as intelligent sensors, pre-programmed functions, and keep-warm function.
For quick-cooking, long-cooking, and specialty cooking, rice cookers are perfect. In fact, they’re more than perfect. They’re essential in homes that serve more than plain white rice. For some people, even white rice is a complicated dish to master!
So to simplify and master the art of rice cooking, look for these rice cooker brands. Based on customer reviews and feedback, they offer excellent features.
No matter the cost, you’d be amazed by the quality of rice each cooker makes. Be it slow cooking, instant cooking, or medium-cooking. Be it brown, white, or a mixture of both. Be it steamed rice, sushi rice, or porridge!
There’s a suitable rice cooker brand for each and every one of you.