For some of us, small rice cookers are a more commonly used appliance than an electric kettle or toaster. It simply makes life a whole lot easier – especially for those of us who enjoy eating rice. These units are compact and lightweight, and don’t take up much space at all. It’s an easy way to have fresh- made rice whenever you want.

How To Choose The Best Small Rice Cooker

There are numerous small rice cookers on the market these days and the purpose of this article is to outline the best of the best. Our intention is to help you become a more informed consumer by gaining the information you need to choose the best rice cooker for you.

We spent weeks checking out every small rice cooker we could find – off-line and online. And then we narrowed it down to our top selections, which we unveil below. Listed below are our top selections in the small rice cookers category.

#1: Black & Decker Small Rice Cooker

 

What’s in the box?

Black & Decker 3 cup rice cooker
Measuring Cup and spoon

 

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Glass lid is a perfect fit to the pot
  • Occupies such a small footprint that you can put this anywhere
  • Well-made rice cooker
  • Built-in vent allows steam to escape while cooking
  • Allows you to make any amount of rice from 1/2 to 1 1/2 cups of uncooked rice
  • Saves time (all you have to do is add the rice and water and leave it alone and in about 25 minutes, you will have perfectly cooked rice)
  • Nonstick surface is easy to wash
  • Makes perfect rice super easy (so it’s ideal for anyone – including the inexperienced rice maker who enjoys fresh cooked rice regularly)
  • Works as easily as a toaster (so it’s impossible to mess up)
  • Great rice cooker for the price
  • Stores away nicely
  • Makes cooking rice and dinner prep quick and simple
  • Jasmine rice comes out tasting great
  • Easy to clean out any leftovers
  • Perfect little appliance for cooking rice, quinoa and barley
  • Ideal for one person or two
  • Great for steaming rice along with your vegetables
  • A game changer for anyone who’s busy and on the go
  • Simple and easy functionality
Cons
  • You cannot leave it on the warm setting for too long or it may overcook your rice
  • For best results, follow precise water and rice quantities
  • Not many bells and whistle’s (it’s simple and basic)
  • There’s no sort of sound to let you know when the rice is done cooking
  • Power cord is on the short side
  • Water can bubble up in spew rice water out of the vent
  • When it is done cooking – it doesn’t shut off (you have to manually unplug it)

The Black & Decker small rice cooker has a 3 cup capacity, so you can prepare anywhere from 1 to 3 cups and get perfectly tasting rice every time. It’s ideal for one or two people and has a built-in “keep warm” function after the rice is cooked so you can eat at your convenience. This personal rice cooker also comes with a two-year warranty.

The removable rice pot inside features a non-stick surface that’s easy to clean. Included with the rice cooker is a measuring cup and spoon. It only uses 300 Watts of power and plugs into any standard 120 Volt outlet.

The Black & Decker rice cooker is hugely popular. With nearly 30,000 customers chiming in – it rates an impressive 4.5 out of 5 stars. That’s huge! With this kind of massive approval and popularity, you can rest assured that chances are very good you’ll be delighted with the performance of this mini rice cooker too.

The serving spoon included ensures that you will not damage the nonstick surface of the pot. Just be sure to use it instead of reaching for a metal utensil. It also features tempered glass lid with a built-in lid holder. This means you don’t have to worry about finding a place to safely place the lid while the rice cooker is open.

There’s also a steam vent in the lid. This model is designed to cook at a consistent rolling boil temperature in order to efficiently cook rice and other grains like couscous, millet, sorghum, barley or quinoa.

Overall this one measures just 8 inches x 8 inches x 6.5″ tall and weighs less than 3 pounds (2.43 pounds to be exact). For a fresh serving of rice (from1.5 to 3 cups of cooked rice) this is an excellent rice cooker.

With the nonstick coating, rice does not stick to the pot. Just be sure to remember when washing it to use a soft sponge or cloth and never abrasive chemicals or sponges.

#2: Dash Mini Rice Cooker and Steamer

What’s In The Box?

Dash Mini Rice Cooker
Rice paddle
Measuring cup
Removable pot with nonstick coating
Recipe book
Owners manual
Access to a recipe database
Manufacturer’s warranty

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Takes up very little counter space
  • Cleans up easily
  • Simple to operate (just push the button and you get rice that tastes great)
  • You may need to adjust the quantities of rice or water to get it to your level of perfection
  • Multifunctional meal maker – not just for rice
  • Cooks perfect rice in about 20 minutes or so
  • Easy way to cook a meal for one or two
  • An ideal option for singles or families of two who prefers fresh rice to leftover rice
  • Versatile – great for side dishes and dips
  • Small and convenient
  • Good size for 1 to 3 (depending on how much rice you use for each serving)
  • Recipe book for non-rice options included
  • Keeps the rice warm until you unplug the machine
  • Easy to use
  • Aesthetically pleasing design and it’s available in multiple colors
  • Arrives nicely packaged with a beautiful recipe book inside
  • Compact size means it’s easy to pack away and store (even though it doesn’t take up much space on the counter)
Cons
  • If it gets even a bit, the nonstick coating may be compromised (be careful and only use a soft sponge or cloth and hand wash only)
  • If the amount of rice being cooked a small, it’s easy to tip it over if you press too hard on the cook button
  • Has a plastic factory smell on arrival
  • Power cord is not detachable
  • Nonstick coating is made of Teflon
  • There’s no on or off switch so you have to unplug it to turn off the rice cooker
  • Exact measurements provided might not be perfect for the rice you want (adjust as necessary)
  • Starchy residue makes it difficult to clean the lid

Another hugely popular small rice cooker is the Dash mini rice cooker and steamer. This one has earned a solid 4.5 star rating from nearly 26,000 actual buyers reporting. That’s a huge number and one that should be reassuring to potential new buyers.

It’s not just for rice wither. You can cook a whole bunch of things in this mini rice cooker – including stews, soups, pastas, oatmeal, quinoa and other grains.

Just set it and forget it – it’s as easy as can be. Simply add your dry (but well rinsed) rice and the correct amount of water and you’re good to go.

The result is perfectly cooked rice every time. The keep warm function allows you to keep your rice at the right temperature for eating – without overcooking it. Just be careful not to leave it too long.

This rice cooker is best suited for singles or couples. It doesn’t matter whether you live in a house just moved into your first apartment. You could have a small kitchen or larger one. Maybe you want a rice cooker for a college dorm room, camper or RV. Well the Dash would make a solid choice and you can use this thing anywhere because it’s so compact. Oh and… it works perfectly too.

When you buy a Dash rice cooker, you get US-based customer support. Should you ever need help, you can get it from a qualified customer support person – one whose first language is likely English.

This rice cooker is perfect for rice balls, soups, pastas, veggies, Mac & cheese, quinoa bowls – even rice pudding and other desserts.

You can count on this Dash mini rice cooker to give you perfectly cooked single portions. It has a 2 cup capacity with two cool touch handles – so you can easily move the rice cooker from the counter to the table at serving time. Also, the included rice paddle makes it easy to scoop out the rice without fear of scratching the nonstick coated interior. And it’s ideal for fluffing perfectly your race every time.

The removable nonstick pot is easy to clean and the provided measuring cup and water levels ensure that you get rice that’s perfectly cooked – not too mushy and not too dry. The key is to monitor your rice. Check on it once it has cooked so that you can make it to your liking.

You get perfectly portioned rice or other grains soups or other foods. It’s an ideal match for dorms, apartments, and offices. Plus, the included recipe guide provides you with 14 delicious meal options.

The dash rice cooker weighs in at just less than 3 pounds and it produces long grain rice that is soft, fluffy and perfectly cooked.

#3: Panasonic Rice Cooker

What’s in the box?
Panasonic mini rice cooker
Measuring cup
Rice paddle (also known as a Shimoji)
Operating manual

 

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Cooks perfect rice every time
  • Automatic shut off feature is ideal (especially if you previously owned a rice cooker that doesn’t have this feature built-in)
  • Keeps the rice warm for a while without you having to attend to it
  • Rice is ready in about 15 – 20 minutes
  • Compact and easy to use
  • Excellent rice cooker when space is limited (perfect for 1 to 2 person household)
  • With this rice cooker, you won’t have to deal with leftover rice
  • Inner pot is easy to clean
  • Rice comes out perfectly cooked every time
  • This rice cooker is easy to operate and can also be used effectively to steam vegetables
  • Cooks fresh rice reliably and easily
  • No warmer to dry out the rice
Cons
  • No built-in warming feature
  • Very small in size
  • Simplistic, basic rice cooker

The Panasonic small rice cooker is excellent for cooking both short and long grain rice – both white and brown varieties. You can also use it for vegetables, soups oatmeal and more. It’s a nice looking unit with a silver finish. As for the overall size, this one measures 5.91 inches x 7.68 inches x 7.0 inches tall. And it weighs in at about 1.9 pounds – a lightweight in the mini rice cooker market.

What really stands out about the Panasonic rice cooker is that unlike many competing small rice cookers, this one has an automatic shut off function. We found this to be particularly handy in that once the rice is finished cooking – the system shuts down automatically – without you having to worry about it. And by the way, the rice still remains warm for about 15 minutes afterwards. So it’s not like you have to jump up to get fresh rice the minute it becomes fully cooked. This Panasonic mini rice cooker comes equipped with a glass lid and attached plastic knob. The see-through glass lid makes it easy to keep monitor whatever you have cooking inside.

The Panasonic 1.5 cup rice cooker cooks rice perfectly with one simple step then it shuts off – so you don’t have to worry about it. When in cook mode, an indicator light lets you know that the cooling cycle is in full swing. It makes just enough rice for two large entrée size rice bowls.

For best results it’s important to thoroughly rinse the rice before adding to the pot. We recommend a triple-rinse process to get rid of as much excess starch as you can so your rice turns out soft and fluffy. This is something you should do regardless of the device or method used to cook the rice.

Another option is to soak the rice for 30 minutes prior to cooking for maximum fluffiness. This method works particularly well with short grain rice. If you’ve got the time, go for it. But a good rinsing will produce wonderful rice too.

This mini rice cooker is perfect for busy professionals single people students or couples. Included on the rice pot are measuring lines which are clear to see. This is important because the correct ratio of rice to water is critical for producing an excellent result every time.

The inner pan is made of aluminum and coated in a nonstick finish for quick and easy cleaning. If you’re ready you create your own light, fluffy, restaurant-quality rice perfect for rice bowls and stir-fry’s – this machine makes it easier than ever. You can also make delicious creamy rice pudding for dessert.

#4: Aroma Housewares Mini Rice Cooker With Digital Panel

 

What’s In The Box?
Aroma Housewares small rice cooker
Inner cooking pot
Rice measuring cup
Rice spatula

 

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Comes with a few recipes so you can get a night an idea of interesting things to try in your new rice cooker
  • It gives you the ability to try a variety of rice and other grains and dishes in the smallest quantity possible (so if you don’t like it – you’re not wasting much food)
  • For other non-rice dishes, there is a bit of a learning curve
  • Works like a charm and is ideal for heating pasta in sauce
  • Produces perfect rice – nothing gets scorched and it cooks perfectly throughout
  • Excellent for taking with you to a hotel room or college dorm
  • Lightweight, portable and very easy to carry
  • Easy to store away (since it takes up so little space)
  • Rice doesn’t stick so it’s easy to clean
  • If you’re doing vegetables separately it can work out perfectly (while your rice is cooking, you can prep all your veggies and cook them)
  • An easy way to have fresh, hot rice every day
  • Jasmine rice taste exceptionally-good in this rice cooker
  • Be sure to use the supplied measuring cup (it is not the same as other measuring cups)
  • Lid locks into place during cooking and stays locked shut while you lift the lid to carry it
  • Reliable rice cooker that’s excellent for one or two
  • Fit and finish is exactly what you expect for a quality well-made product
  • Basic operations are easy to use for anyone
Cons
  • Best not to use directly under kitchen cabinets as the steam it generates can be damaging
  • Would be nice if the power cord was removable
  • No audible alert when the cooking process is complete
  • Could have an issue with sticking since the nonstick coating is not the best
  • Included instruction booklet only comes with two extra recipes (one for pasta and tomato sauce and another for an omelet so beyond that – you’re on your own)
  • You cannot leave the lid in the sink soaking because water can get inside
  • Steam generated from cooking rice can spew out the top (this can be alleviated by placing a paper towel loosely over the vent)
  • Can leave a mess on your countertop (same solution as above)
ini rice cooker with a cooked rice capacity of 2 to 3 cups. The overall size measures 6.75 inches x 6.25 inches x 7.25 inches tall. It features a slick handle design that lifts up easily and snaps down into place, making this another easy to use rice cooker. It also features programmable digital controls with an automatic “keep warm” feature – as well as special settings for both white and brown rice. And that’s something you just don’t see on a lot of mini rice cookers.

The cooking pot inside is removable and coded in a non-stick finish for easy cleanup. It has a cool touch surface, digital controls and easy locking lid – with a steam vent built-in.

Cook anything with confidence including white rice, brown rice, quinoa, pasta, oatmeal, soups – even omelets – in this small rice cooker. It’s lightweight and portable with a fold down handle that is very convenient.

This rice cooker is easy to operate with three main functions – white rice, brown rice, and keep warm. It’s minimalist design and size makes it something that will easily fit on any counter.

Set it and forget it. If you want to enjoy fluffy rice that’s ready in no time – this rice cooker fits the bill. And for those of us who prefer brown rice – it doesn’t get easier than the one-step system this small rice cooker provides.

Naturally, brown rice is going to take longer to cook. But by using a proven ratio (such as 1 cup dry brown rice to 1.25-1.5 cups of water) you’ll have delicious tasting healthy brown rice in about 45 minutes. You can even throw in a few vegetables on top of the rice and these will steam as your rice cooks. It’s a complete meal at the touch of a button.

Perfect Rice – One or Two Servings At a Time

Small rice cookers are designed for 1 to 2 people and can cook rice perfectly every time without any effort or concern. But that’s not all the small rice cookers can do. They can also heat soups, pasta dishes, steam vegetables – and more.

Small rice cookers are so compact that they’re easy to take with you when traveling. That’s the best way to ensure quality rice when you’re on the road – whether it’s a business trip or you’re simply camping or exploring a new area in your RV or trailer.

Any Kind of Rice

You’re not limited to white rice only – although that is by far the most popular rice. You can also cook brown rice, basmati rice, jasmine rice, sushi rice and many other varieties too. It’s just a matter of getting the ratio of rice to water just right for your taste. It’s also easy to add dumplings or vegetables to the mix and have your dishes come out perfectly – so you can enjoy a more complete meal – wherever you are. All you need is a standard 120 Volt outlet to plug into and your rice cooker will do the rest. It’s really simple.

Simple Steps To Delicious Results

These mini rice cookers are lightweight electric pots that operate in a similar manner to a slow cooker. Most small rice cookers have an interior container that may be made of stainless steel or aluminum coated with a nonstick finish.

Simply add your rice and the correct amount of water. Then close the lid, turn the machine on and get on with your life. That’s all there is to it. In about 15 to 20 minutes, you’ll have perfectly cooked rice which you can enjoy anytime. It’s an excellent way to enjoy a hot lunch at the office.

The minimum time required to cook rice is 15 minutes, although many of these rice cookers take slightly longer at 20 to 25 minutes. The smaller the quantity of rice, the less time required to properly cook it.

Get One That Meets Your Needs

All small rice cookers on the market have a limited capacity and generally, this ranges from 1.5 cups up to about 3 cups of rice. If you need more rice – you’ll need a larger rice cooker – of which there are many.

You’re also not limited to cooking rice as your grain of choice. These rice cookers also make easy work of quinoa, barley, buckwheat, and other grains, as well as oatmeal. That makes it easy to diversify your foods, if you so desire. Or, stick to the types of rice you like best. Nothing cooks rice (or other grains) better – and it just doesn’t get easier.

The Verdict

Small rice cookers are wonderful mini appliances that can make your life easier and more comfortable. You can enjoy single or double servings of or your favorite rice whenever you want. And there’s a whole host of other grains and meals you can prepare in one of these compact units.

What we have introduced are the best small rice cookers available today. All of our picks are highly rated by previous customers. So the odds are that you will be happy with any one of the above. In our opinion, the top two small rice cookers are the top two from our list – the Black and Decker model and the Dash Mini Rice Cooker. Both are quality appliances, so you can’t really go wrong.

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