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MY RICE COOKER BURNS MY RICE!

I BOUGHT A SMALL CHEAP RICE COOKER. PERHAPS CHEAP IS THE OPERATIVE WORD HERE AND THE SOURCE OF MY PROBLEM. I MEASURE THE RICE IN THE CUP PROVIDED AND ADD THE WATER RECOMMENDED. I TURN THE MACHINE ON AND EVERY TIME HAVE HAD OVERCOOKED, BURNT TO THE BOTTOM OF THE COOKING INSERT. I HAVE TRIED 2 TIMES THE AMOUNT OF WATER AND THAT HELPS BUT IT STILL BURNS AND STICKS TO THE BOTTOM. IT'S AS IF THERE SHOULD BE A PROTECTIVE PIECE BETWEEN THE COOKING BOWL AND THE HEAT MECHANISM. I HAVE TRIED PUTTING FOIL UNDER THE POT BUT THEN THE MACHINE WON'T TURN ON. MORE THAN DOUBLE WATER MEASURE BUBBLES OVER AND COMES STEAMING OUT OF THE COOKER. WHAT'S THE PROBLEM? I CAN'T IMAGINE THAT THIS IS HOW A CHEAP COOKER FUNCTIONS.

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  1. First of all, please refrain from using all-caps. I am not sure that you are aware but all-caps imply shouting/screaming.

    Secondly, no, that's not how a rice cooker should function. I have had cheap and expensive rice cookers before and have never had one that burns the rice. I have had ones where there is a dry crust at the bottom (not burnt). I would imagine that the heating element is too hot or your insert is too thin. I don't think there is anything you can do except to return it. Doubling the water wouldn't work because that would just make the rice texture all wrong.

    1 Reply
    1. re: cecilia

      CECILIA, THANKS FOR THE FEEDBACK.

      I HAVE OWNED BOTH AS WELL AND ALMOST ALL DO IT, UNLESS YOU SIT AND WATCH.

    2. I bought a similar rice cooker, and in the (somewhat broken English) instructions, I recall it said something about "brown crust forms at the bottom, is ok to eat and some even like it very much!"
      DH loves that part so I don't really care. I know it's not a real rice cooker, but I didn't expect it to be at $10 or whatever the heck I paid for it.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Covert Ops

        The brown crispy rice in many countries/cuisines is considered a delicacy...Chinese, Japanese, Persian...etc. Some people would actually want that feature since it's been engineered out of many rice cookers. (There was a thread or tangent about this somewhere.)

        To the OP...return it if it displeases you and get a better one. National is an inexpensive but honest brand and doesn't burn and shouldn't cost much more.

      2. Have you tried soaking and rinsing the rice a few times? It might be worth a shot before you buy a more expensive cooker. Agreed, though, that the "crust" can vary by cooker and is considered a treat.

        1. What brand is it? I'm sure you read the directions properly, but there are some RC that require water underneath the bowl (generally about 1/2-3/4 cup using the cup provided). Usually these have a flat bottom surface, like Tatung brands that are from Taiwan. Japanese style cookers (and some Chinese ones) don't require water underneath. Sometimes when I don't put enough water the rice is a little dry but it certainly doesn't burn.

          2 Replies
          1. re: bbc

            Well, I guess I appreciate that if you make rice every day a rice cooker might seem easier...but why are you not using an ordinary saucepot....cook your rice like pasta in salted water, start with water at boil, add rice, cook until rice is tender to your taste - and drain like pasta. Just about foolproof if you can't get rice to simmer and absorb all your water in proportion.

            1. re: Alice Letseat

              i can walk away- even leave the house with the cooker- wouldn't leave or walk away with the gas on and not being able to turn off- did that for years and loved the idea of the cooker not needing attention while cooking(atleast that's what i thought!)

          2. Rice browns and burns on the bottom of the pot only when heat is applied after the water in the pot has evaporated. Rice can't overcook unless you use too much water, but it will brown (and eventually burn) on the bottom if you leave it over heat. For soft rice all the way through, look and listen for the switch to click off, then pull out the insert and allow the rice to rest on a trivet. No more burnt bottoms.

            1. Are you turning it off (or unplugging it) after the "cook" cycle is finished? A lot of rice cookers will burn the bottom of the rice in the "warm" mode if left there for more than a short time. If it burns the rice before the cook cycle is finished, I'd say it's defective.

              4 Replies
              1. re: Gary Soup

                i can't figure out the warm mode- there's nothing to indicate that. i need to pull the directions again and look over tham i though it was so simple that i didn't really look and threw it to the side, or perhaps, out! now sifting thru my teen laden house- imagine what's that like- 2 girls!!!!!!

                1. re: yeshana

                  is it burnt as in blackened or just brown and crispy? as a few people have mentioned the "koge" rice is a treat that has largely disappeared because of how modern rice cookers work. I have known people to actually put the rice pot full of cooked rice on the burner of the stove to make a koge crust at the the bottom (pronounced ko-gay).

                  1. re: KaimukiMan

                    it's just yukky mushed rice so stuck to the bottom that i couldn't imagine scraping and eating it as a treat.i read the directions again and still cannot find any info on a warm mode indicator that they claim exists, or directions other than measuring, rinsing and turning on the cooker. i may go back to pot cooking if not splurging on a higher end model.

                    1. re: yeshana

                      There's usually a light that will change color or go off when the "cook" mode finishes, as well as some kind of audible signal. All rice cookers that I know of go into "warm" mode as soon as "cook" mode is over, and many have no "Off" switch, so you have to unplug them at that point or risk burning your rice.

              2. Spend some dough if you want to ensure good rice. I, too, used a cheap rice cooker that I received as a gift for years and years. The rice was ok, but inconsistent in quality. Last year I splurged - after a significant amount of research - and bought a Zijirushi (model NS- MYC 18). What a difference. Jasmine, long grain, basmati - it cooks them all to perfection each and every time. And the rice doesn't get dry or crusty when you leave it in "keep warm" mode for a couple of hours. Rice takes a little longer to cook than my old cheap version, but it is so worth it. They sell it at Williams Sonoma, though I think I bought mine on either Amazon or Cooking.com

                Erin@TypeADiversions.com

                1. Mine does the same thing, I just make extra rice to compensate for the stuck on rice. I also use some Pam type spray which helps a little. The crunchy rice is often used with leftovers so its not a big deal. I'll have to try the method mentioned by alanbarnes.

                  1. I got a cheap Aroma cooker a few years back that did the same thing with the first pot of rice. I took it back to Walmart and eventually got a better cooker. It wasn't just browned (I like browned), it was burnt. Something definitely was wrong there!

                    And it shouldn't stick so that you can't get most of it out.

                    1. If you cook rice frequently, you should invest on a nice rice cooker...however, they are not cheap!
                      If you don't, I rather cook my rice on stovetop.