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Cooking Rice in the oven?

Can someone give me some advice on cooking rice in the oven. I've got to come up with 50-60 cups of cooked rice and I don't have space on the range to cook it. Has anyone ever done this and if so how did it turn out. I found a recipe online:

Heat oven to 350

use oven safe pan pour desired rice amount and add 2x the water (boiling water) to it along with about 1/2 tablespoon of salt to every 4 cups of rice and 1/8 cup of oil to every 4 cups of rice

cover pan with foil air tight

place pan in oven for about 45 min

take out oven and let sit and steam with cover still on pan for approx. 10min.

use fork to fluff rice.

serve hot

How does that look? Any recommended changes?

Thanks in advance.

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  1. The basics of the recipe are sound. I however do not like the idea of adding oil....greasy rice is not my thing.

    Cooking rice in the oven is something many commercial kitchens do if they do not have a larger steamer on hand as many Asian restaurants have nowadays. Some variations to consider are:

    Make a Rice Pilaf with chicken stock or bouillon.
    Consider using Converted or Par-boiled rice to achieve fool-proof results(non-sticky).
    Consider the addition of slivered almonds, chick peas, sweet peas or other vegetables and beans.

    1. I love baked rice! Here's my post for a baked rice recipe paraphrase made during the June Cookbook of the Month when we cooked from Penelope Casa's book, "La Cocina de Mama."

      "Baked Rice, Ch. 5, Pg. 127

      A great way to make rice! I used Aborio because we couldn't find Bomba rice. Will have to search wider afield. Soften minced onion in olive oil, add the rice and coat, then broth, water, parsley, thyme, saffron, S & P and bring to boil. Transfer to preheated 400* oven and bake for 15 minutes! remove from oven, let sit for 10-ish minutes covered...That's It!! It was a perfect side for the Lemon Chicken and Sauteed beans."

      I used 1 cup Aborio rice and 2 cups chicken broth. You can use Jasmine and water if you wish.

      1. Looks like it should work. I bake rice in the oven all the time, if I'm already baking other things; like Gio, I usually start it boiling on the stove first. This doesn't sound practical for the amount you're making, though. Then I give it a good stir before putting it in the oven to prevent it from sticking/forming a crust on the bottom of the pan. With this in mind, you might want to consider stirring the rice a few minutes after putting it in the oven, just to prevent that bottom crust from forming.

        1. GM:
          Don't worry, that recipe will work.
          But you can make your life easier, too. In the kitchen where I used to work, we would make dozens of pans of rice that way weekly, sometimes daily. Here's what we did:

          In a 8Q hotel pan, we'd combine 1qt (volume) of rice with 2qt of water or stock, and a hefty pinch of salt. I like to add a couple of pats of butter or a little oil but it is really more for flavor than any significant amount of lubrication or starch control. If the Latin guys were making the rice, they'd often add a few stalks of celery, carrot, and about half an onion with a couple of Tbsp of butter- just for flavor. We would always first cover the pans with plastic wrap for an air-tight seal, then cover the wrap with foil- I had never seen this before working in catering and other large-format kitchens but 99 times out of 100, the plastic will stay with the foil but give you a perfect airtight seal. We then would let the pans sit for 10-30 minutes, then put them into the 350degree oven. After 35 mins, we'd give the pans a shake without taking off the covers: if it still felt like it was sloshing around, it wasn't done yet, if it felt like a solid mass, it was done/almost done- as your recipe states, this usually takes 45 minutes, depending on whether you're using converted rice or not. When the pans came out of the oven, we'd let them sit covered for another 15 minutes before taking the covers off and fluffing the rice.
          This process is roughly akin to using a rice maker- let the rice have a bit of a head start soaking up the water, cook long enough with a minimum of agitation, then let steam finish your cooking for you.

          3 Replies
          1. re: lunchbox

            hello - this sounds intriguing - cling wrap in an oven? can you kindly assure me that what i am reading is: cling wrap the rice and water mixture, and then put the foil on it, and put all of this in an oven, and that the cling wrap will NOT shrivel/burn, but rather give airtight steamed results - can you please assure me before i venture to do it myself - (i dont want to cause any damage)

            1. re: labaik

              So sorry- i hadn't been online here in ages!
              Yes- you can put the plastic wrap in the oven- strangely enough, the water coming off the rice is NOT hot enough to burn the plastic- the edges along the pan may burn and when all of the water is gone and is just steam, the temps will rise enough to melt the plastic- put the pressure will push it against the foil- not the food.

              1. re: labaik

                Yes, use saran or cling wrap, it doesn't burn, as you have airtight foil over the saran. Works like a charm

            2. yeah, i've done it like that, it works fine. i use some butter, not oil.

              i wouldn't waste chicken stock on it, but sometimes i do sautee some onions or something like that.

              i also sautee the rice for a bit before i put in the water if i have time, like when you start risotto.

              in my experience this method works best with short grain rice.

              1. Ok, here's the definitive answer...and I know cause I did it this morning. I used the normal ratio of rice to water, boiled the water first, poured it on top of the rice in a pan, put a lid on it, and let it cook in a 350 degree oven for about 30 minutes. Worked fantastic. Best way I know to cook a lot of rice.

                1 Reply
                1. re: GrillMaster

                  hello - i am facing the same problem - need to cook rice for 30 people...using 1/4 cup per person, and rice being the side dish, am thinking of cooking 7 cups. what woudl be the ratio of rice to water that you would recommend? from what i understand, you put the drained rice in a baking dish, and poured boiling water (the same amount as the rice) on the bed of uncooked rice, and then put it in the oven (350 degrees) for 30 minutes...would the duration of the cooking have to change if the rice is differnet amount? any guidance would be GREATLY appreciated...and the sooner the better please!

                2. My mom used to make it that way all the time - baked in a Le Creuset covered dish. I still have that little dutch oven!

                  She would make a beefy flavor rice and sautee the rice on the stove top until brown and then place it in the dutch oven and cover with water and beef consomme.

                  She used regular old white long grain rice.
                  The long grain is better for fluffy rice than medium or short grains.

                  Keep it tightly covered and make sure your oven is evenly tempered.

                  1. This recipe is great, although I would change a couple of things for future reference. I use a 1 : 1.5 ratio for large quantities of rice. For example, I would cook 8 cups Jasmine rice with 12 cups water, covered with tinfoil at 350 F for 45 - 60 minutes (check at 45 minutes to see if rice is done, if not, leave it in for another 15 minutes.

                    Also, oil and butter are not necessary for excellent flavor (at least for Jasmine rice). Mind you that this recipe will vary based on the type of rice you will cook.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: ceejoe

                      1: 1.5 sounds right to me ...... for long grain white rice ( like Jasmine) the 1:2 might be better for short grain/arborio? having the liquid heated before you add it to the rice will hasten the process. the even heat of the oven is ideal for large quantities of rice.

                      1. re: ceejoe

                        I tried ceejoe's method and it worked great- thanks! Ideal for parties and events. I will be using this technique for "Green Rice" for an Earth Day event - I make a sauce in a food processor with cilantro, parsley, lemon, and olive oil, and dress the rice with it.

                      2. I wouldn't use oil. Butter or ghee if anything, which is what I use because it tastes better and it helps keep the grains of rice separated - but I mix the butter or ghee, which is soft, with the rice before added the water.