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rice cooker recommendations?

My mother's rice cooker is on it's last legs, and I've been going around in circles researching different brands and styles. My mother is Japanese and likes to have hot rice on hand all the time. She only ever cooks medium-grain white rice, so it doesn't need all the bells and whistles to cook different kinds of rice. Plus she's almost 80 years old, so anything that's complicated to use is out. It would be nice if it could keep the rice warm for at least a couple days. Would appreciate any recommendations!

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  1. I have one by Rival that is very simple to use and to clean but I know it wouldn't keep rice warm for two days. It works well though and was very inexpensive. It has only one button. The indicator light says either COOK or KEEP WARM. It has an inner pot that lifts out, a plastic ladle, and a plastic measuring cup. I measure the rice with the cup and fill it with water to the corresponding line marked inside the pot, cover it with the lid, press the button, and forget about it. It makes up to three cups of uncooked rice.

    1. For your Japanese mother the best option would be Zojirushi hands down, without question. Especially for keeping rice warm. Failing that, your best bet would either Tiger or Panasonic. All are Japanese brands and would be very familiar to her. They won't be the cheapest, though they do have less expensive models, but they would be the best.

      1. I have a Zojirushi rice cooker, and I like it a lot. That being said, Tiger has very good reputation as well. I recommend one of these rice cooker in the small size (3-5 cups) and around $100. For example like this one:


        1. In spite of your objections, I would recommend the Zojirushi UMAMI Micom Rice Cooker (NS-YAC10 for 5 cup or -18 for 10cup). Often on sale at markets like Marukai here in SoCal. You can just dump in the rinsed rice and water and hit the Rice button and everything happens automatically. The UMAMI mode makes mouth watering rice. Cooking times are longer than say a Tiger (my last brand). Closer to an hour vs. 30 minutes but the wait is worth it. I've never kept the rice for more than 24 hours but I wouldn't be surprised if it tasted fine after two days.

          1. I love my zojirushi fuzzy logic rice cooker.

            1 Reply
            1. gmm,

              May I recommend the site:


              I have ordered from them on several occasions and found the people there very knowledgeable. I think you may find what you want on this site. They have a toll free number and can answer many questions. Hope this helps.

              1 Reply
              1. re: dcrb

                I l ove my programmable Sanyo, not just for rice, but for oatmeal too. If I had to buy another one, I would get one that also had a steamer.

              2. If she was happy with her failing rice cooker, then buy something similar and uncomplicated. What is her existing rice cooker like. It sounds like you want to minimize change. Why 2 days of warming - does her existing rice cooker do that successfully?

                1. Wow, it never occurred to me that rice cookers could safely hold heated rice for 2 days. But I never did check the temp., so why not?

                  I'd just replace what she has presently (features, size, brand, etc.)

                  edit: I'm very happy with my Zojirushi (non-fuzzy logic)

                  1. Another vote for Zojirushi; I love mine. I've never tried keeping rice warm for two days -- about a day and a half is the longest I've gone, but it stayed perfect for that long. It wasn't cheap though.

                    1. Zojirushi gets all the love, but let me tell you about the no-frills, just on-and-off Tiger I inherited from my ex-sister-in-law. She used it for about 10 years, nearly every day. It sat in storage for nearly 8 years before I found it there, and I've been using it now for just about three years. That's pretty impressive mileage.

                      No idea whether or not it keeps rice warm for a couple of days. Never tried it. Never thought to.

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