If you are looking for a quick and perfect solution for cooking rice, then a rice cooker would be the perfect solution that will save both your time and extra effort.
Or if you are looking for a replacement for your old rice cooker, you no longer need to look further online reviews to find the best rice cooker. Why do you ask?
Because Japanese cookers are world famous for their durability and advanced innovative features. And in this article, I’ll review the 10 best Japanese rice cooker by popular brands with a buying guide.
So, scroll below and find your choice!
Why Are Japanese Rice Cookers So Expensive?
When you think about the word “Rice” what’s the first thing that comes to your mind? Sushi, right? And when you think about sushi, you probably also think about the Japanese people as well.
Know that, when it is about cooking rice, the Japanese know the best ways to cook different types of rice. Regular rice, soup rice, sushi, and fried rice aren’t the same, and they require different methods of cooking.
Therefore, Japanese rice cooker brands come with multiple options for cooking rice. With an ordinary rice cooker, you’ll only be able to cook regular rice, vegetables and bake cakes.
Furthermore, cooking rice is quite complicated compared to cook other food items. Herein, Japanese rice cookers come with special inner pots with a quality coating that is more closed to traditional rice cooking pots.
Top 10 Best Japanese Rice Cooker
The Japanese know how to cook rice perfectly. Therefore, after the traditional method, they prefer Japanese rice cooker as their daily home appliance. So, to make cooking rice even better and perfect, let’s have a look at what I have on the list for you.
1. Zojirushi NS-TSC10 5-1/2-Cup (Uncooked) Micom Rice Cooker
If you are looking for a rice cooker for your family, this might be the right one for you regarding its size. It comes with the sizes of 5.5 and 10 cup.
This appliance is made of sleek stainless steel that comes with a measure of 10 1/8x14x8 ½ inches, and the cooker is quite durable and will easily last for many years.
The cooker features micom and fuzzy logic that ensure your rice is cooked perfectly. If you are not familiar with fuzzy logic, well it’s a sensor that detects the weather condition and adjusts the temperature inside the pot and provides you perfectly cooked rice every time.
As it’s a Japanese rice cooker, you can cook white/brown rice, sushi, sweet rice, mixed rice, porridges, and fried rice as well. The rice cooker doesn’t only cook rice; you can also steam veggies, bake cakes, and make porridges.
Besides its multiple options to cook, it also offers two delaying settings. “Keep Warm” option keeps your rice warm for a long time. You also can reheat the meal whenever you want.
- Micro-computerized fuzzy logic adjusts temperature and time
- Stainless-steel exterior
- Keep-warm function
- Takes longer to cook than conventional rice cookers
- The scoop isn’t of US standard
2. Zojirushi NS-WAC10 Micom Fuzzy-Logic 5-1/2-Cup (Uncooked) Rice Cooker
This elegant looking rice cooker has got a dent resistant plastic body. The LCD panel comes with the cooker that is quite friendly and easy to use for people of all ages. The cute round shaped exterior will match perfectly to most of the kitchen décor.
The biggest selling point of this Japanese rice cooker is its fuzzy technology. Its inner cooking pan and the heating system team up for you to provide perfectly cooked rice every time. The cooker offers multiple different cooking options such as white/brown rice, sushi, sweet rice, porridge, rinse-free cooking.
Many users stated that these preset functions can cook brown rice. The most interesting part of this rice cooker is its quick cooking option. If you do not have enough time to wait about 30-40 minutes, you can go with the quick cooking option and have your meal before within 25 minutes.
With its “Warm” feature, you can keep the rice warm for an extended period.
- Fuzzy technology ensures perfectly cooked rice
- Dent resistant plastic body looks elegant
- Keep-warm function for fluffiness
- Non-retractable power cord
3. Zojirushi NS-ZCC10 5-1/2-Cup (Uncooked) Neuro Fuzzy Rice Cooker
It is a spherical size rice cooker that comes with LED panel along with a clock and timer. With this unit, you can make fluffy and restaurant quality rice at home. This fuzzy rice cooker has a spherical shaped non-stick pan that is very easy to clean.
When it comes to the best Japanese rice cooker, there is no chance of missing the fuzzy technology. If you live in an extreme weather area, then this feature is a must for you to have perfectly cooked rice.
This cooker comes with cooking options such as white/brown rice, sweet rice, rinse rice, porridge, and mixed rice. You can also cook oatmeal and basmati rice as well.
Its “Keep-warm” option will keep the rice fluffy for a long period. Also, if you don’t have time to sit back and stare at the cooker, you have the “Quick Cook” option to cook rice within the shortest possible time.
- Advanced neuro-Fuzzy technology
- The retractable cord will not make the kitchen messy
- Quick cooking option
- 9 cooking pre-set menus
- Automatically switches to keep-warm mode
- Takes longer to cook rice compared to other rice cookers
- Cannot be cleaned with dishwasher
4. Tiger JAX-T18U-K 10-Cup (Uncooked) Micom Rice Cooker
Another Japanese rice cooker with micom technology, but this one is quite big as it’s capable of cooking 10 cups of rice. Also, it comes with a 5.5 cup variant. You can steam ingredients while cooking rice with the given steam basket.This rice cooker offers 10 different options for cooking rice, such as plain rice, mixed rice, brown rice, sweet rice, porridge, multi-grain, etc. It only takes 25 minutes to cook quick rice. On average, the cooker takes about 45 minutes to cook another type of rice.
Although it doesn’t have a dedicated option for cooking brown rice, you can use the multigrain option to prepare your brown rice meal.
As the cooker features the Micom technology, you don’t need to worry about the temperature of the area you live in.Those who prefer to cook rice for the next 2 meals, its “Keep Warm” option will come handy for them. The rice cooker can keep the cooked rice warm for about 12 hours. But you will need to switch the warm mode manually.
In addition, you can also reheat your cooked rice just before you are about to have your meal.
- 11 different cooking pre-sets
- Adjustable cooking time
- Micom cooking technology
- The keep-warm function keeps the rice soft
- Durable stainless-steel inner pan
- The power cord is non-retractable
- Water accumulates at the lid
5. Zojirushi NHS-06 3-Cup (Uncooked) Rice Cooker
Say hello to the cutest rice cooker on the list. If you want a basic Japanese rice cooker to prepare a meal for two to four person without any fancy features, then this cooker would be the ideal one for you. For more people, you have the option to pick from 6 and 10 cup of variants.
The cooker comes with a nonstick inner cooking pan which is durable enough for light cooking, and you can clean it very easily. Like all other Zojirushi rice cookers, the package includes a measuring cup as well.
When it comes to operating the cooker, it is even more simple than you think. Soon as the rice absorbs necessary amount of water, the sensor will stop further heating and automatically switch to “Keep Warm” mode. It will keep the rice warm and fluffy for hours.
You can see through what is happening with the rice while cooking with its glass lid. It only has two buttons, one is for cooking, and another one is for “Keep-warm” function. As the rice cooker comes with a detachable cord, you can place the cord inside your kitchen accessories drawer and keep the kitchen area neat and clean.
- User friendly operating system
- Keep-warm function maintains the moisture
- See-through glass lid for monitoring the cooking
- Doesn’t have an LCD panel
- Warm mode burns the rice to some extent
- Spits water from the steam hole while cooking
6. Tiger JBA-T18U-WU 10-Cup (Uncooked) Micom Rice Cooker
With this rice cooker, you can get the best quality rice possible. All you need to do is, place the rice and pour the right amount of water and leave the rest to its automatic cooking logic. Once it’s done, open the lid and enjoy the rice aroma with your family members at the dinner table.
Its automatic cooking logic monitors the temperatures and senses when water is properly absorbed into the rice, and then it switches to “Keep Warm” mode.
When you are spending such amount of money, you don’t expect it to make only plain white rice for dinner. This rice cooker offers different cooking options such as plain rice, sweet rice, brown rice, porridge, slow cooking, steam cooking, and multi-grain as well.
With the slow cooking option, you can make stews, soup, and other meals too. The inner lid is detachable, and cleaning doesn’t take that much of efforts. Its urban white color coat gives the cooker an elegant look.
You will get a rice paddle, steamer, ladle and measuring cup with the cooker. All the accessories are made of quality plastic and will last for years without even on heavy usages.
- Automatic keep-warm function for preserving
- Works with automatic cooking logic
- Multiple cooking options
- Slow cooking
- Non-stick inner pan got 3 layers coating
- The power cord is short and non-retractable
- Not suitable to wash with dishwasher
7. Midea Mb-fs5017 10 Cup Smart Multi-cooker/Rice Cooker
If you are looking for a rice cooker for your family at a reasonable price, Midea MB-FS5017 is all you need. The capacity of this cooker is about 5L, that means not only it’s enough for your family of 5 to 10 members, but also you can throw a party and relay on it regarding rice serving.
This premium looking rice cooker has a touch panel which can be quite difficult to operate at first for the older citizens.
The rice cooker offers 24-hour delay timer for busy people. You can put rice and pour the right amount of water in the morning and leave it plugged. And when you return at your home, you will get perfectly moist and fluffy rice for lunch or dinner.
You will have 11 different cooking options to choose from such as white rice, brown rice, quick rice, sushi, congee, whole grains, baby porridge, soup, stew, steam, slow cook, and reheat. What else are you looking for?
Inside of the cooker is made of five materials that make heating quite fast and continue to heat to preserve the rice. Due to this, the rice absorbs water fully and taste very delicious. You will get a steam tray, a rice spoon and a measuring cup with the cooker.
- 11 different cooking options
- One touch control panel
- Special inner pan heats really fast
- 24-hour delay timer
- No water drainage system
- Can burn the thin layers of foods if the quantity of rice is low
8. Aroma Housewares 20 Cup Cooked (10 cup uncooked) Digital Rice Cooker
Rice cookers these days do more than just cooking rice. Aroma ARC-150SB model is one of those rice cookers that cook rice and at the same time steams other food items as well.
This huge rice cooker can cook 20 cups of rice that will be more than enough for your family and guests. If you do party more often, you can feed people rice without doing any hassle.
With this rice cooker, you can cook white and brown rice, flash rice, slow cook, steam and keep cooked items warm. Other than just cooking rice, it also steams meat and veggies for you to mix with rice.
You can use it only for steaming vegetables as well. To do that, you will need to put water in the pot and vegetables on the steam tray and press the steam button.
It also offers an easy solution for busy people. The rice cooker features a 15-hour delay timer so that people can leave home and find their rice well-cooked when they return.
The cooking pot is made of aluminum, and the inner part has got a non-stick coating. You will get a steam tray, spatula and measuring cup with the rice cooker.
- Enough to feed a big family
- Multiple cooking options
- Vegetables steaming while cooking rice
- Can keep the rice moist enough for about 15-hours
- Difficult to operate for older people
- Too big to carry wherever you go
- Difficult to clean
9. Zojirushi NS-VGC05 Micom 3-Cup (Uncooked) Electric Rice Cooker
This is the last Japanese rice cooker from the brand Zojirushi. This advanced rice cooker is perfect for singles and families of 3 members. The size of the cooker is ideal for people living in small apartments or college dorms.
Likewise, most other rice cookers from this manufacturer, it has Micom-Fuzzy logic technology. The fuzzy technology easily adjusts the weather temperature with the cooking temperature for each cooking options.
You can cook white, mixed, sushi rice along with porridge, rinse-free rice, oatmeal and even bake cakes. If you regularly need to cook brown rice, then this cooker will not be a good choice for you.
With the help of its delay cooking function, it can keep your rice warm enough for hours. This cute looking rice cooker can easily match your kitchen room décor.
The non-stick inner pan (Teflon) is easy to clean. It has an LCD panel with a 24-hour timer. You will get 2 measuring cup and a rice spatula and recipes with this rice cooker.
- Micom fuzzy logic cooking technology
- Great portability due to the small size
- Thick spherical non-stick inner pan
- LED light makes it easy to read
- No drainage for water that stores on top of the plate
- The power cord isn’t retractable
- Requires cleaning after every cooking
10. Panasonic Rice Cooker
Last but not least, the Panasonic SR-G06FGL rice cooker is for those who prefer simplicity over tons of features and fancy panel. It can be an ideal low budget advanced rice cooker for mid families.
The cooker doesn’t forget about the rice and keeps heating. Soon as it detects the cooking is finished, it automatically turns off further heating. All you need is to push the button and wait till the rice is perfectly cooked.
Note that, the cooker doesn’t have a keep-warm function. So if you are that kind of a person who prefers to cook rice and have it immediately after that, you can consider buying this one.
With this rice cooker, you can cook 3 cups of rice along with 3 cups of other foods such as oatmeal, vegetables, and soup.
You can see through its glass lid when the rice is being cooked. A white plastic knob is also there for safety. The non-stick inner pan is aluminum coated which means you can use it for years without any issue. Also, the cleaning process is quite simple and convenient.
For cooking and serving purposes, the cooker comes with a rice scoop and a measuring cup.
- Simple operating functions
- See-through glass lid
- Aluminum coated non-stick inner pan
- Shuts down automatically when the rice is cooked
- Not suitable for cooking brown rice
- Limited cooking mode
- It doesn’t have a keep-warm function
Things to Consider Before Buying
There are plenty of options to choose a rice cooker from the market. But to make your purchase worth, there are a few things that you need to consider.
Types of Rice Cooker
Depending on the way of cooking and preserving, rice cookers are found in various types.
Microwave Rice Cooker
These rice cookers are mostly made of plastic vessels that use steam to cook the rice or foods like a microwave.
Conventional Rice Cooker
These are widely used rice cookers that are operated through a push button and turn off or switch to keep-warm mode automatically.
Micom Rice Cooker
Micom rice cookers are the most advanced and expensive rice cookers that work with a computerized micro-chip. These cookers automatically adjust the temperature and cooking time with the help of thermal sensors and deliver perfectly cooked rice.
Micom Induction Heating Rice Cooker
These cookers cook by creating a magnetic field surrounding the bowl and makes the bowl a heating source. Bowls get hot much quicker than any other way of cooking, and within a short time, it provides fluffy rice.
Micom with Pressurized Induction heating
This type of cooker has Micom technology with pressurized induction heating that can even change the physical properties of the grains and rice.
When it comes to the Japanese rice cookers, they offer tons of cooking options to choose from.
In the market, you will find cheap and inexpensive rice cookers that are only used for cooking rice. Also, there are rice cookers that can cook rice and steam veggies, bake cakes and make other foods as well.
Furthermore, you can choose a rice cooker that is capable of cooking different types of rice. Many of them come with a quick cooking function that can cook even faster.
Induction Heating Facility
Induction rice cookers use a magnetic field to cook rice and other food items.
As it directly heats the bottom pot of the cooker, you can get cooked rice at the shortest possible time.
Not all rice cookers can cook the same quantity of rice. Depending on the number of family members, you will need to choose the capacity.
The smaller ones can cook 3-4 cup. There are family size rice cookers that are capable of cooking 10 – 20 cups of rice. You will also find a commercial rice cooker that can hold 50 cup of rice as well.
Warm Heating Function
This is a must-have function for those who don’t have enough time to cook the rice for every meal. You can cook it in the morning and turn on the keep-warm mode and have the rice at lunch or dinner. Many Rice cookers switch to keep-warm automatically after finishing the rice cooking.
Rice cookers produce great amount of heat to cook your meals, and it requires a lot of energy to do that.
Typically, advanced rice cookers require more or less 600 watts to prepare your meal. Therefore, whatever you purchase, make sure it comes with energy savings rating.
Transporting heavy home appliances is not easy. And if anyone moves it from one place to another often, it will increase the risk of potential damage.
If you need to move your rice cooker here and there, then consider getting a smaller size rice cooker. Lightweight rice cookers have great portability. But the heavier ones are made of stainless steel, comes with advanced features and are expensive as well.
Top-Rated Japanese Rice Cooker Brands
Japanese rice cooker brands manufacture great quality rice cookers. They provide warranty, great service and their products are world class for durability. But before you decide to pick one, have some idea about the well-known brands.
Among all other brands, Zojirushi is the most reputable Japanese rice cooker brands in the market. They manufacture both small and large size rice cooker with advanced features like Micom fuzzy technology, Keep-warm and reheat.
They have come to their 100th anniversary with great customer support. You can rely upon their long experience, innovative mechanism, and inspiring design. It would be worth mentioning that, they produce the most expensive rice cookers available in the market.
The next brand on the list is the Tiger Corporation. They are based in Osaka, Japan and have a division in Torrance CA, in the United States. Since 1923, the Tiger brand is manufacturing cooking appliances as well as other household products.
Their rice cookers come with great design, advanced features, multiple cooking options, and great durability.
Even though you might not have heard about the two manufacturers that I have mentioned before, but you surely heard the name Panasonic. They are a well-known brand for home appliances.
They manufacture great induction rice cookers with fuzzy logic and offers pre-set menus as well. Also, their rice cookers are pretty compact regarding the design.
4. Aroma Housewares
Aroma housewares produce mid-budget rice cookers. They have lots of variations in design for their product lineup. These rice cookers don’t come with an advanced feature like Micom fuzzy technology. Their most expensive rice cookers are equipped with induction cooking technology.
Midea rice cookers are a well-known Japanese rice cooker. The best part of their rice cookers is the elegant design. They produce rice cookers with pressurized IE heating, keep-warm function, and offers multi-function cooking pre-sets.
Also, their rice cookers can be operated through voice commands.
How to Take Care and Maintain Your Expensive Rice Cooker?
When you are spending such amount of money on a rice cooker, you must ensure that it’s well maintained for the sake of durability. Here are my maintenance tips for your rice cooker.
- If you are a new rice cooker user, read the manual first. You will find appropriate instructions on how to clean it properly.
- Regularly clean the inner pan and lid to prevent bad odor and corrosion.
- Before cleaning, make sure you unplug the cord from the power socket.
- Don’t clean the cooker in warm condition. Let it cool down first.
- Clean the inner bowl with soap and warm water. You can use a mild dishwasher, but don’t use dishwashing detergent to clean your rice cooker. Some cookers shouldn’t be washed with a dishwasher. You will find instructions written on the manual whether you can clean your rice cooker with a dishwasher or not.
- Avoid using abusive and harsh cleaners to clean non-stick coated pan.
- After cleaning, make sure it is completely dry before you mount it back to the cooker.
- Thoroughly clean the heating plate before putting the rice.
- Don’t keep the cooker near any surface with a water source to prevent electric shock.
- To prevent bacterial growth, don’t keep foods inside the cooker for long periods.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is the Micom cooker?
Micom stands for micro computerized. It uses fuzzy logic to adjust the cooking time and the room temperature with the cooking temperature to make perfect rice.
2. How long does it take to cook rice?
It depends on the type of cooker. If you use an ordinary rice cooker, it will take up to 40 minutes to cook. However, if you go with the quick-cooking function, it will take about 25 minutes to prepare the rice for you.
Also, cookers that work with induction heating technology, can cook even faster using the magnetic field to heat the cooker pot directly.
3. Can I bake cakes in a rice cooker?
Not all the rice cookers come with cake baking options. Cookers with Micom and microwave cooking technology mostly have the option to bake cakes.
4. Can I make vegetables in a rice cooker?
To cook vegetables in a rice cooker, the cook must come with a steam basket. If you only want to cook vegetables in a rice cooker, then you will need to fill the cooking pan with water and put veggies in the steam tray. Hot steam will cook vegetables for you.
5. Do rice cookers turn off automatically?
Not all rice cookers will turn off automatically when the rice is perfectly cooked. However, most of the Japanese rice cookers use a sensor that detects when the cooking is over and automatically shuts down further heating and switches to keep-warm mode if available.
Hopefully, you will find the best Japanese rice cooker from the list above. Focus on your need and wisely choose a rice cooker by taking ideas from the buying guide.No matter which one you will choose, it will surely save your time and make your mealtime enjoyable.