Best Gift Ideas for Kitchen Gadget Lovers

zojirushi-ns-yac10-18-umami-rice-cooker

zojirushi-ns-yac10-18-umami-rice-cooker

Buying for those kitchen gadget lovers in your life this holiday season could be a daunting task. You might be wondering what else to get them that might be useful and make their lives easier. If you haven’t thought about getting them a rice cooker, you may want to add it to the options.

The Advancement in Heating Technologies and Menu Selections

Rice cookers have come a long way like many other kitchen appliances. It started with a humble heating element in the external vessel with an inner cooking pot in it. You add the dry rice, water and plug it into the power socket. 30 minutes to an hour later, your rice is cooked without your intervention or supervision. Nowadays, rice cookers are equipped with human artificial intelligence and different heating technologies such as induction and pressurized heating. No matter what you cook, the smart cooker will turn the rice and other grains into perfection in flavor and texture.

This guide is a list of the best rice cookers 2012 based on price range and ratings in an ascending order (cheapest to most expensive).

For each price range, 5 bestselling models will be listed with very brief notations of the unique feature/s highlighted in gray. All the rice cookers are in uncooked/or dry rice capacity size. Many of the rice cookers were reviewed or compared in depth on this site. If so, you may click on the gray highlight to learn more. To check the current price, click on the Title of the rice cooker.

Under $50

  1. Aroma ARC-150SB 10 Cup Digital Rice Cooker and Steamer: Digital programs, cook rice, slow cook and affordable
  2. Aroma 838TC 8 Cup Rice Cooker and SteamerSimple electric heating element with cook, keep warm and delayed timer
  3. Aroma ARC-743-1NGR 3 Cup (Uncooked) Rice Cooker and Steamer: Simple “on” and “off” button, bare minimum rice cooker, very affordable
  4. Panasonic SRG06FG 3.3 Cup Automatic Rice Cooker: Inverter heating, energy-efficient, four sizes to choose from
  5. Aroma ARC-753SG 3 Cup Stainless Steel Rice Cooker: Surgical-grade 304 stainless steel inner cooking pot, simple to use with a one-button operation, affordable

Under $100

  1. Panasonic SR-DE103 5 Cup Rice Cooker: Fuzzy logic, 8 menu options, including rice cooking, steaming, slow cooking and baking, more affordable
  2. Miracle Exclusives ME81 Stainless Steel Rice Cooker: Grade 304 surgical stainless steel inner pot, more affordable than comparables, conventional heating
  3. Krups RK7009 4-in-1 5 Cup Rice Cooker: 4-in-1, rice cooker, steamer, slow cooker, oatmeal cooker
  4. Zojirushi NS-PC10 5 Cup Rice Cooker: Conventional heating, single button operation, energy-efficient
  5. Oyama CFS-B12U All Stainless Steel Rice Cooker: Stainless steel inner cooking pot, 3 sizes to choose from

Under $150

  1. Zojirushi NS-LAC05XA 3 Cup Rice Cooker: Fuzzy logic, best-rated, stainless black and stainless brown colors
  2. Zojirushi NS-ZCC10 5-1/2 Cup Rice Cooker: Fuzzy logic, attractive exterior design, elaborated menu options, most popular model
  3. Zojirushi TSC10 5-1/2 Cup Rice Cooker: Fuzzy logic, cook cooker, steamer, baker
  4. Instant Pot IP-LUX60 6-in-1 6.33 Quart Multi-Cooker: 6-in-1 multi-cooker, save up to 70% energy cost due to pressure cooking
  5. Tiger JNPS10U 5-1/2 Cup Rice Cooker: 5-star ratings, cook rice flawlessly, simple to operate

Under $200

  1. Zojirushi NP-HBC 5-1/2 Cup Rice Cooker: Fuzzy logic, induction heating, 2 sizes to choose from, the inner pot as the heat conductor for even heat distribution and even cooking
  2. Zojirushi NS-YAC18 10 Cup Umami Rice Cooker: Fuzzy logic, umami feature for best-tasting rice, 10 menu options, including GABA brown rice
  3. Tiger JAH-T18U 3-in-1 10 Cup Rice Cooker: Rice cooker, steamer & slow cooker, fuzzy logic
  4. Zojirushi NS-XBC05YR 3 Cup Rice Cooker: Designed by a Japanese industrial designer, cute as a button mushroom, risotto menu option
  5. Zojirushi NS-DAC10 5-1/2 Cup Rice Cooker: Minimalistic exterior design, menu options in universal icons, fuzzy logic

Over $200

  1. Zojirushi NP-GBC05 3 Cup Rice Cooker: Fuzzy logic, induction heating, even heat distribution and perfectly cooked rice
  2. Zojirushi NP-HTC18 10 Cup Rice Cooker: Fuzzy logic, induction and pressurized heating technologies yielding the best cooked rice
  3. Zojirushi NS-TGC10 5-1/2 Rice Cooker: Fuzzy logic, 7 menu options, including baking cakes
  4. Sanyo ECJ-HC100S 10 Cup Rice Cooker: 3 cookers in 1, rice cooker, steamer, slow cooker, fuzzy logic, more affordable pricing than competitors
  5. Tiger JKC-R10U 5-1/2 Cup Rice Cooker: 5-layer inner cooking pot from inside out: aluminum, copper, aluminum alloy, copper and stainless steel, distinctive convex shape with double circulation effect; thicker inner pan of 2.5 mm, brick-oven style cooking and far-infrared coating, 11 menu settings

Final Thoughts

I hope this guide is helpful for you to narrow down your choices either per your budget or features. The cheaper the price, the less advanced the heating element and fewer menu options. The opposite is true. The median price for a rice cooker with advanced technology and sufficient menu settings is between $100-$150. So keep that in mind as a reference point.

A rice cooker will last for many years. While the initial investment might seem high, the cost will be recouped from the time and energy cost savings in a few short months.

The best place to buy a rice cooker is at Amazon as the price is lower than other retailers and even the manufacturer’s website. In addition, you can peruse the actual customer reviews before making your own decision. Not to mention the shopping and returning processes are so effortless.

 

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