Electric Rice Cookers

No more burnt rice! Just pour in water and press start -- these kitchen champions do the rest.
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rice cooker

1) Oster 20-cup Smart Digital Rice Cooker
(The large family)
$50, oster.com
UPSIDE Preset menu for various jobs; cooking-cycle countdown; delay start timer and 3-hour keep-warm setting; handle/lid combo for easy transporting; removable cord.
DOWNSIDE Feels flimsy; difficult to read waterline marks.

2) Panasonic SR-DG102 Rice Cooker
(The small family)
$100, amazon.com
UPSIDE Preset menu for various jobs; quick-cook option; doubles as a slow cooker; 12-hour keep-warm setting; removable cord.
DOWNSIDE Expensive; condensation runs into machine when inner pot is removed.

3) Aroma 8-cup Rice Cooker
(The busy college student)
$24, walmart.com
UPSIDE Inexpensive; compact; handle/ lid combo for easy transporting; ridgefree, removable cord for easy cleanup.
DOWNSIDE No end-of-cooking signal; cooks unevenly.

4) Proctor Silex 10-cup Rice Cooker
(The budget-conscious couple)
$20, proctorsilex.com
UPSIDE Inexpensive; compact; seethrough glass lid; dishwasher-safe bowl and lid.
DOWNSIDE No end-of-cooking signal; difficult to accommodate full 10 cups; cooks unevenly; liquid spits out at lid’s edge; machine gets too hot.

5) Sanyo ecj-f50S Rice Cooker and Steamer
(The cook who wants it all)
$140, sanyostore.com
UPSIDE Sturdy, heavy-duty inner pot; sensors adjust time and temperature as food cooks; preset menu for various jobs; doubles as slow cooker; 12-hour keep-warm setting; preset timer and cooking-cycle countdown.
DOWNSIDE Expensive; no end-ofcooking signal; condensation runs into machine when inner pot is removed; metal parts on lid get hot.

USE YOUR ELECTRIC RICE COOKER TO MAKE THESE RECIPES

Creamy Mushroom Soup

Rice Salad

Garlicky Pork Fried Rice

Simple Rice Pudding

Rice-Stuffed Peppers

NOW ... AND LATER

Store it Using a lightly dampened or oiled rubber spatula, spread the cooked rice in a thin layer on a wax-paper-lined baking sheet to cool. Divide into individual, 1-cup portions and put into resealable plastic bags. Refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 1 month.

Reheat it Place the refrigerated or frozen rice in a microwavable container, dampen one or two paper towels and drape over the top. Microwave on high for 1 to 2 minutes per cup.

*Prices and other details were accurate when we published this article in October 2009.