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Aug 14, 2005 11:42 PM

Why don't rice cookers have an OFF switch?

  • g

Every rice cooker I've had around the house has had a two position switch: "COOK" (or "ON") and "WARM". If you let it stay on "WARM" for long you get the base for a quick 'n' easy bibimbap, but sometimes we want crustless rice.

Am I missing something?


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  1. Gary, If you want to turn the rice cooker off, you would press "cancel" since, as you've pointed out, there never seem to be an "off" switch.

    7 Replies
    1. re: Margret

      No "cancel" button, either. Maybe you need a top of the line "fuzzy logic" machine to get one of those, but our cheapo unit's logic is fuzzy enough already.


      1. re: Gary Soup
        ChowFun (derek)

        My Sanyo does have an OFF switch...but yes it is a "Fuzzy Logic" one, I wanted a JOOK cycle...

        1. re: ChowFun (derek)

          I'm reading this and thinking "Gary's might not be as high tech as Derek's, but it's light years ahead of mine." My rice cooker doesn't even have a "warm" function. It cooks the rice, then it shuts down.

          Maybe the people who develop these things are taking baby steps. The next incarnation of rice cookers will be complete with OFF function.

          1. re: nooodles

            The Hitachi ChimeOmatic has two switches: Off/On and Cook/Warm. It's been in production a good many years. I have three of them that I've picked up at thrift shops for $4 or less. They make darned good rice.


            1. re: Jim Washburn

              A friend gave me an Hitachi Chime-O-matic
              food steamer/rice cooker but, without a
              booklet, a don't have a clue re how this
              machine works. Can you please help me?

              1. re: jack arnold

                Perhaps there's measurements on the bowl?
                For instance if there's a raised line that says One Cup, put a cup of rice in and fill the water to that line.

      2. re: Margret

        Rice come come in all shapes, sizes and controls. The more you spend the more bells and buttons you get. We have at least two rice cookers on simple with just cook and keep warm controls. It is the one I like to use. KISS is a old saying in Engineering so the less controls the easier to use. I like the simple one because it can cook rice and jook with just one setting.

        The Fuzzy logic one I only use when I have time to read and reread the instructions.

        There are a lot of cheap and easy models out there.

      3. Pull de plug.

        1. Gary, Why don't rice cookers have an off switch? Have you seen the current population of China? They never turn the things off!

          1. One reason could be that many people, like my family, wants crust; it's highly desirable. We actually will not purchase any rice cooker that would not produce crust. Also, less buttons, less "mechanical" problems to deal with.

            1. My rice cooker is an El Cheapo (National? Panasonic? Hitachi? Sanyo? Ya got me...) that I've had for at least 20 years, and it has a lighted rocker switch for on/off, and a lever for cook/warm.