Perfect rice every time: The best kitchen gadgets for A+ results, from $10

If one grew up in an Asian family, I consider rice to be a staple food. My family eats it at least twice a week. I know I’m not alone. Rice is an essential element in many local cuisines-think rice and beans, okra soup, rice pilaf, etc.

I’m a huge fan of yours, so I take cooking seriously. It doesn’t need more work; it just needs the right tools – certain kitchen essentials that guarantee perfectly cooked rice every time – and very little input from the cook (seriously, it’s like pushing a button).

Here are my favorite tools for making perfect rice, some of which are even on sale. I promise, once you ramp up the rice, you’ll never look back.

Zojirushi Neuro Fuzzy Rice Cooker

This Zojirushi rice cooker — the Cadillac of the category — makes perfect rice every time! (Photo: Amazon)

Having a dedicated rice cooker is definitely worth the money. It makes perfect rice every time and takes the guesswork out of it. My favorite rice cooker is the Zojirushi Neuro Fuzzy Rice Cooker. Yes, it’s expensive, but if you and your family eat rice regularly, you’ll soon taste the delicious rewards. If you’re frustrated with rice that’s too dry, too soft, and burnt on the bottom, know that this device is completely safe.

All you need to do is measure the rice and water according to the instructions, pour it in, and press a button. Voila, you’re done! Not only is it great for fine rice, it’s great for brown rice too.

Zojirushi is not just for making rice. I like to use it to make oatmeal – pour a cup of oatmeal and three cups of water, set the pot to “porridge”, and press the start button. Imagine waking up to freshly cooked oatmeal with no effort at all.

Hamilton Beach Digital Programmable Rice Cooker

Only $53, this Hamilton Beach rice cooker does a great job — and comes with a steamer basket, which is great for veggies. (Photo: Amazon)

Zojirushi is an investment, that’s for sure. But you can also do very well with less expensive models. If you’re looking for a lower price range, this Hamilton Beach digital programmable rice cooker is a good choice. It comes with a steamer basket (you can cook anything in it, from fresh broccoli to frozen gyoza) and, like the Zojirushi, is programmable. This basket means you can cook rice and steam vegetables at the same time! And it’s not cheap. And the price is right!

Instant Pot Duo, 6-Quart

This multi-tasker handles rice like a pro. (Photo: Amazon)

If you don’t have room for a dedicated rice cooker in your kitchen, then this Instant Pot electric pressure cooker is also a smart choice because of its amazing versatility and multiple talents. It can simmer, bake, roast, sauté, pressure cook, make yogurt, and more. It’s not as simple as a dedicated rice cooker, but it gets the job done. Save $21 on this model today!

Inomata Japanese Rice Washing Bowl

Rinsing rice makes a huge difference in the texture. This bowl makes that task quick and easy. (Photo: Amazon)

The following two are a bit more niche, but if you’re a rice fanatic like me, these two are worth it. Anyone who cooks regularly knows that you should wash the rice grains before cooking so that excess starch can be removed. This can be awkward and messy if you’re using a regular bowl and strainer.

That’s where this inexpensive Inomata Japanese Rice Bowl comes from. The holes in the bottom are much smaller than those on a regular strainer, so the rice doesn’t get caught and the water doesn’t wash out (you need the water level to be high enough to soak it slightly while washing the rice). There’s also a handy side drainer that drains excess water as you go. This bowl is quick and easy to make:Pour the rice into the bowl, brush around in the water with clean hands, and then let the water run out. Repeat until the water is not cloudy. Then the rice is ready to cook!

Sol Place Rice Storage Container

This container is large enough to store 25 pounds of rice! (Photo: Amazon)

Last but not least, if you buy rice in bulk, a large storage container is essential. A 25 pound bag of rice won’t fit in a regular trash can! I am super in love with this Sole Place rice box. It’s funky and trendy and comes in four colors (dark blue, pink, light blue and white). The hinged lid has a tight silicone seal that makes it airtight, and it comes with a scoop. Of course, if you don’t want to use it to store rice, that’s okay – it can also be used as a pet food container!

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