Rice cookers are the most frequently used item in my kitchen. I use them to effortlessly cook rice (long grain rice, brown rice, sushi rice), about 3 times a week, and I sometimes pair it with other foods as I steam corn or fish in the upper tray.
Among other cookers, I have an Oster rice cooker and it’s pretty simple to use as it literally has one button. That said, it took a couple of attempts to perfect the rice making process since their documentation isn’t that clear so I’ll share these tips below on how best to use the Oster rice cookers.
How to Use the Oster Rice Cooker
Preparing the Rice
Be sure to rinse the rice a few times with cold water. This step will get rid of the excess starch that makes the rice stick together and prevent it from boiling up and boiling over in the rice cooker as well.
Water to Rice Ratio
This depends on the grain being used. A good rule of thumb is that you should use:
- White rice: 1.5 cups of water for every 1 cup of rice.
- Long grain or brown rice: 2 cups of water for every 1cup.
Basically, the tougher the grain, the more resistant it is to water absorption so you need to use a bit more water to compensate.
Place Rice in the Cooker
After filling in the appropriate amount of water up to the designated fill line in the inner pot of the cooker, dump in the rice. Tip: Let it soak for 5-10 minutes.
Close the lid and plug in the unit.
You should see a red light display on the cooker to indicate that the rice is cooking.
The good thing about Oster rice cookers is that they’re fast. It should only take about 15 minutes to cook most rice.
Once finished, the light will switch orange, indicating that the cooker is in keep warm mode.
Tip: Allow the rice to rest for 15 to 20 minutes to allow it to soak up additional moisture in the pot. This helps to soften the rice.
You can use the upper steamer tray to steam vegetables, corn, proteins or whatever else you’d like. I use it religiously for broccoli and carrots and it preserves the color, nutrients, and taste of all of my vegetables quite nicely.
Clean Up and Maintenance
Fortunately, the inner pot of the Oster rice cooker truly is nonstick. You can use the provided spatula to scoop up the rice and the rice comes right off. Therefore, cleaning is a breeze.
It’s dishwasher safe and you can also just use a regular sponge to clean it as well. Of course, be sure to unplug the unit first.
Oster Rice Cooker Features – Best Cheap Rice Cooker
I’m not sure you’ll find a cheaper rice cooker than the Oster 6 Cup Rice Cooker. And it performs surprisingly well, considering its price point.
There’s only one button and two modes: either cook or keep warm. You won’t get a bunch of different one touch cooking options that other higher end rice cookers offer, and the rice may not be restaurant quality, but if you follow directions precisely, you can turn out batch after batch of good tasting rice.
It comes in either a red or black design, a steam basket for steaming vegetables and protein, a removable tempered glass lid to allow for easy rice monitoring, and a non-stick inner pot.
It has one button that either flashes red to indicate that it’s in cook mode, or orange to indicate that it’s in keep warm mode (that it switches to automatically).
Finally, it has a stay cool handle and plastic spatula to scoop up the rice without scratching the inner pot.
The oster rice cookers range in capacity from 3 cups to as much as 20 cups of rice. Good for either a couple or large family, depending on cup size.
The most popular model and one being reviewed is the 6 cup rice cooker.
Again, “oster rice cooker ratio” and “oster rice cooker directions” are highly googled terms because, again, this rice cooker isn’t foolproof like other rice cookers that have built in logic to ensure your rice cooks perfectly, regardless of the type of grain or water levels.
It may take a bit of experimentation, but once you get the water ratios down, you should be able to make consistently great tasting rice.
This is where it shines. You won’t find a cheaper rice cooker. Or should I say inexpensive. It’s actually pretty well made and has 4 stars on Amazon from nearly 3K reviews.
This is a great value. It may not have all the bells and whistles that other rice cookers provide, but if you eat rice infrequently and just need an inexpensive unit to get the job done, go with the Oster rice cooker.