Here at the Strategist, we like to think of ourselves as crazy (in the good way) about the stuff we buy, but as much as we’d like to, we can’t try everything. Which is why we have People’s Choice, in which we find the best-reviewed (that’s four-to-five-star reviews and lots of ‘em) products and single out the most convincing. While we’ve written about the best slow cookers, pressure cookers, and even a certain idiotproof rice cooker, here we’re going deep on all the best rice cookers on Amazon. (Note that reviews have been edited for length and clarity.)
The Best Multifunction Digital Rice Cooker
“I’m a simple guy who is terrible at cooking rice and has to feed a family of six regularly. This rice cooker is awesome, and I question why I waited so long to buy one. Sure, you could get a better one by dropping a couple hundred bucks on a fancy model, but for what this does, it does it well. It takes about 35 minutes to cook rice for that many people. I’ve also cooked other things in the rice cooker like a beef stew and chili. A pot roast only took about four hours to cook and the meat was just falling apart. SO GOOOOD!”
The Best Japanese Digital Rice Cooker
“I can make rice, just not as good as this fella. Just wish I had realized exactly how big of a machine this is. Realizing just HOW MUCH rice it makes was a bit of surprise, since it’s just two of us. But go big or go home … right? I was able to make absolutely perfect sushi rice straight out the gate with no worries, and usually if I’m making sushi and prepping fillings and additions, I’m hoping the rice will be good. I’ll never have to worry again. It was PERFECT, and I probably did a few things wrong. Now, I just need to adopt a few hungry orphans.”
The Best Korean Digital Rice Cooker
“What a wonderful little rice cooker … moving down from a ten-cup Tiger unit to this cute guy made for more counter space and better tasting and textured five-grain rice. The first pot was a joint effort; my wife prepared the mixture and set the type/style setting and asked me to plug it in and start the process. We both enjoyed excellent cooked rice, and at a quantity that makes more sense.”
The Best Single-Switch, Manual Rice Cooker
“I’m not a rice connoisseur, but for me, this rice cooker delivers fluffy, perfect rice every time. I tend to cook about three cups (dry volume) of rice each time. Add water, add rice, flip the lever to ‘cook,’ and in about 20 to 25 minutes, I have great rice for dinner. If that’s what you need, then this is the product. It’s a simple cooker that works perfectly and exactly like the one I had for 25 years. Very, very happy.”
The Best Pressure Rice Cooker
“I have always wanted an Instant Pot (a.k.a. pressure cooker). However, the larger sizes were too big for meals for one person. This three-quart size is perfect and I use it at least three times each week when I get home from work. It is really, really easy to use and comes with a cookbook. So far, I have made perfect rice, steamed corn on the cob to perfection, and made chili. This is one of the few gadgets that has not been relegated to basement storage!”
The Best Japanese Pressure Rice Cooker
“This unit is brilliantly engineered for a single task — to cook perfect short-grain white rice. With slight variations, it can also do a superior job on long grain, brown, sushi, and sticky rice, or even beans and lentils. All those others pale in comparison to the job this cooker does on simple short-grain rice, which, with absolutely no thought or effort, comes out better than you’ve ever had white rice before. We use it on a variety of white, brown, sprouted, and other types of rice, and it’s easy to use and clean.”
Editor’s note: We’ve written about this before.
The Best Ceramic Rice Cooker
“We are regular rice eaters and had purchased and used many rice cookers before. This is the smallest one at a very reasonable price that I found. It’s the first-generation rice cooker that all Asians grew up with, so do not expect frills, but it’s functional and very durable (less buttons and programs to cause trouble). Cooks perfect rice in 30 minutes. For brown rice and other rice, just add a little bit more water and it would take a little longer. The steamer is definitely a plus.”
The Best Synchronized-Cooking Rice Cooker
“I purchased this after our beloved Zojirushi rice cooker broke, which didn’t seem to last very long. So far, we make rice or quinoa several times a week and it cooks perfectly. The ‘warm’ function works very well and doesn’t result in any crusting at the bottom or overdrying. An unexpected bonus is the Synchro-cooking feature. I made donburi (chicken or egg dish) and it was so easy. It cooked simultaneously with the rice and both turned out great. It’s also very easy to clean. If you’re debating between this and the Zojirushi, get this one!”
The Best Microwave Rice Cooker
“This pot is near perfect except for it being a little too small for my family of six. It cooks beautifully textured rice (fluffy, tender, cooked right through, but not clumpy or mushy), which I’m sure would satisfy the most finicky rice-loving Asian. I have a 900-watt microwave oven. I cooked the (washed and drained) four cups of rice with five cups of water, on 50 percent power (450 watts) for 18 minutes, then left it alone for 20 minutes before eating. Perfect!”
The Best Mini–Rice Cooker
“Cutest little rice-maker! Makes nice fluffy rice. So easy. Keeps rice warm after cooking. Hubby was delayed getting home for over an hour; rice was still good, just a little dry. Not my rice cooker’s fault at all. Love this little R2-D2-looking device.”
The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best women’s jeans, rolling luggage, pillows for side sleepers, ultra-flattering pants, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.
Every editorial product is independently selected. If you buy something through our links, New York may earn an affiliate commission.