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How To Reheat Rice In A Rice Cooker

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Most of us are guilty of not properly measuring rice, or adding a little bit extra in for good measure. Usually, this leads to a surplus of rice after dinner, but luckily, there is an easy way to reheat leftover rice using a rice cooker. 

Not only does this stop you from having to cook rice from scratch again, but using a rice cooker to reheat rice ensures that the rice is fluffy and tastes fresh, compared to the mushy, sticky rice you get when reheating it using other methods.

How do you reheat rice in a rice cooker? Reheating rice in a rice cooker is so easy, all you need to do is add in some water, press reheat and leave it for one hour. The rice cooker can reheat the rice from cold, so there is not much you need to do to have some warm rice in under an hour.

Reheating Rice In A Rice Cooker

Most rice cookers have a reheat option, with some being found by the start button. To reheat the rice you will need to add in a tablespoon of cold water, place the rice in the rice cooker, and then press keep warm.

With the gentle function of keeping warm, the rice will reheat slowly in the rice cooker. Reheating the rice slowly is the best way to do it, as too much heat too fast could burn the rice and rob it of the moisture that it holds, causing it to either be hard, mushy or both at the same time.

The tablespoon of water added into the rice cooker gives the rice just enough moisture to keep the rice from drying out but does not provide too much moisture, which could cause the rice to go soggy.

Simply leave the rice cooker on warm for an hour, and check on it every now and again until the rice has heated through completely. 

Using a rice cooker to reheat rice is the most stress-free way to get it done, as you do not need to worry about stirring, adding more water, or checking the heat while it warms up, the rice cooker does it all for you, and will have nice, warm, fluffy rice in just an hour.

Many rice cookers also have delay timers (such as the Instant Pot) so if you want to reheat your rice, but only want it ready in two more hours or so, you can set the timer to start heating up your rice to be ready exactly when you need it.

Reheating rice in a rice cooker is also great to keep the rice warmer for longer. You can dish up a bit of rice, close the lid and leave it to keep warm for longer, so nobody has to eat cold rice or worry about warming it up again.

How To Reheat Rice Without A Rice Cooker

Not everyone has access to a rice cooker, but if you do prepare rice often for meals at home, a rice cooker would be a great investment, offering up an easy and fail-proof way to prepare the best rice time and time again, with minimal effort and even less preparation.

However, if you do not have a rice cooker at home, here are three different ways to reheat rice:

1. Microwave

Using the microwave to heat up rice is possibly the quickest way to get it done, but it is also quite risky. If not done right, the rice can either become hard, or it can stick together in a gluey mess.

To reheat rice in a microwave:

  • You will need to place the cooked rice in a microwavable bowl, along with a small splash of water.
  • Break up any clumps of rice using a fork, and cover the bowl with a wet paper towel. 
  • Cook the rice on high for 30 seconds.
  • Remove the bowl from the microwave.
  • Stir the rice, leave it to sit for 30 seconds, and repeat.
    • Leaving the rice to sit for 30 seconds between heating allows the heat to distribute evenly. Continue this until the rice is heated through.

If you are only heating up a small portion of rice, you could place the rice on a plate, and break up any lumps, covering the rice with a wet paper towel. This allows the rice to be spread out more, which makes it reheat faster.

Make sure to not overcook the rice in the microwave, or let it become too dry, if you feel like it needs more moisture, you can add in another tablespoon of water (you could even try adding rice milk).

2. Stovetop

When reheating rice on the stovetop, you will need to steam it more than fry it. To do this, you will need to place the rice in a saucepan, along with a tablespoon of water, using a fork to break up lumps of rice to spread it out evenly.

Place a lid on the pan and cook the rice over low heat, stirring it every now and then, until the rice is completely heated through.

Do not let the rice become too hot, as it might stick to the bottom and dry out. Be sure to use a tight-fitting lid to not let any of the moisture escape out of the saucepan.

3. Oven

Reheating rice in the oven might not seem like the obvious choice, but it actually works out really well. Mix some rice and a splash of water together, and spread it out over an oven-safe baking tray. Remember to break up any large lumps of rice with a fork.

Cover the rice on the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake the rice for 20 minutes or until heated through, at 300 degrees Fahrenheit.

As the rice is spread out, it will heat up more evenly and quickly, which prevents too much moisture from being lost. The cover of aluminum foil also prevents too much moisture from leaving the rice, keeping it hydrated and safe from drying out.

Is It Safe To Reheat Rice?

Some people believe that it is unsafe to reheat rice, but this isn’t particularly true. Rice is fine to reheat and eat, but it also depends on how you store the rice, and your handling and cooking methods.

Rice can contain Bacillus cereus, which is a bacteria that can survive some cooking processes. This bacteria can lead to food poisoning, and if the rice is not cooked properly, or stored properly, the bacteria can grow on leftover rice and cause sickness.

When cooking rice, you need to make sure it reaches a high temperature. The danger zone for bacteria to breed is 40-140 degrees Fahrenheit, so be sure to cook your rice above this temperature to kill off any bacteria. Rice should be served immediately after cooking.

If you are planning to store leftover rice, try to cool the rice down quickly. You can do this by dividing the rice between shallow containers or placing the rice directly into the fridge or freezer. Do not leave rice sitting out for more than an hour.

You should store rice in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the fridge, and for up to 4 months in the freezer. Make sure that the temperature of the rice stays below 40 degrees Fahrenheit to prevent bacteria growth.

When reheating rice, be sure to reheat it enough where it is piping hot, to further prevent the spread or growth of bacteria.

Related Questions

Can you reheat rice after it has been in the fridge for more than a day?

It is fine to reheat leftover rice that has been in the fridge, however, cooked rice should be placed in the fridge as soon as possible, preferably within an hour of being cooked. The rice can be kept in the fridge for up to 4 days, but the sooner you reheat and eat the rice, the better.

Make sure to reheat the rice thoroughly to ensure any bacteria is killed, and that the rice is safe to eat, without posing any food poisoning threats.

What is the best way to reheat rice?

The simplest way to reheat rice is in a rice cooker, after all, a rice cooker was made specifically for cooking and reheating rice.

It is really simple to do, just place the rice and some water into the rice cooker and leave it on keeping warm for an hour. The rice will be warmed through, and it will be kept hot enough to ward off any bacteria growth. 

Reheating Rice In A Rice Cooker

A rice cooker is such a handy tool to keep in the kitchen, especially if you find yourself cooking large portions of rice often (don’t forget to rinse your rice before cooking). To make it even better to keep, you can reheat your rice really easily in a rice cooker, taking all the effort out of leftovers for you.

Cook your rice, reheat it and keep it warm to ensure that everyone in the family can enjoy a steaming hot portion of rice for dinner!

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