Stainless Steel Rice Cooker

Stainless steel rice cookers are in high demand these days due to the awareness and potential concerns with non-stick coated cookware. Based on numerous studies, there is really nothing to be alarmed about as cooking temperature of rice cookers will never reach to the 662 degrees F for the coating to decompose. But for those of you want to air on the cautious side, here is a quick overview of Teflon, its safety in cookware and alternative options for stainless steel rice cookers.

What is Teflon?

Teflon is a trademark by Dupont which refers to a synthetic fluoropolymer of tetrafluoroethylene called Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE). PTFE is a waxy white material that is very slippery accidentally discovered by Roy Plunkett in 1938. PTFE has numberous applications in both industrial and household cookware best known as non-stick or Teflon coating.

Is It Safe?

In recent years, there are growing concerns about the safety of the use of Teflon in cookware because the pyrolysis of PTFE is detectable at 392 degrees F or 200 degrees C. The numerous studies concluded that that the amounts of pyrolysis detected wouldn’t be significant to cause harms to human health.

PTFE is safe and non-toxic as long as the temperature of cookware is below 500 degrees F or 260 C. Above 662 F or 350 C, it decomposes. The degradation by-products may be lethal to birds and cause flu-like symptoms in humans.

Rice Cookers with Stainless Steel Inner Pot

Fortunately, the rice cooker is not a high-temp cooker. In fact, the cooking method is of steaming in nature. The temperature only reaches to a boiling point to produce steam to cook the rice. So there is no need for concern for the non-stick material in rice cookers. But if you just want to be on the safe side, there are rice cookers with the inner pot made of stainless steel. Here are a few examples:



Miracle Rice Cooker

Miracle Exclusives is an American household appliance manufacturer best known for its Miracle wheat grass juice among other products. Miracle Exclusives carries rice cookers with stainless steel inner pot such as ME81. The cooking pot is made of grade 304 stainless steel. ME81 is measured as 8 cups in uncooked rice that yields 12 cups of cooked rice. The rice to water ratio is different than the norm for all other rice cookers.

The rice cooker only has cook or keep warm settings. There is no sophisticated Fuzzy Logic technology or menu choices. It comes with a steamer where you can steam veggies, meats, fish, etc. either simultaneously with rice or without rice.

Priced below $100, it is an affordable choice. A one year limited warranty is offered by Miracle.

Tatung Rice Cooker



Another great alternative is the Tatung’s TAC-11KN Rice Cooker made in Taiwan. TAC-11KN is an excellent multi-tasking cooker with steam and slow cook features. In fact, the rice cooker takes the steaming to a new height. If you buy a separate steaming basket, you can steam/or cook multiple dishes like a multi-tiered decker.

The rice cooker employs the “double-boiler” concept with indirect heating. The rice or other meals are cooked via pure steam from the external vessel as well as the steam in the inner pot. So the rice and foods are always tender and moist.

This model is 10 cup uncooked/20 cup cooked rice. Tatung also offers other models with smaller capacity such as 3 or 6 cup uncooked rice. For more information, please refer to Tatung TAC-11KN 10 Cup Rice Cooker Review.



Aroma Rice Cooker

Aroma’s NRC-1000 Digital 18-cup Rice Cooker, Food Steamer and Pasta Cooker should be added to your list for consideration. Aroma’s rice cooker is marketed in cooked rice, so the 18-cup is what you are going to get upon cooking. The uncooked capacity is 9 cups. It’s large enough for most of the family sizes.

It’s tripled in its functionality where you can cook rice, steam foods and cook pasta. Like other stainless steel options, this Aroma model is also made of 304 grade surgical stainless steel. So your food will not be in contact with materials such as Teflon.

A word about the sizes. I’ve given you the larger sizes on purpose as it is better to have the upside in case you need to cook for more people. You can always cook fewer cups in your everyday use as long as you cook the minimum amount for optimal result. For most rice cookers, 2 cups are recommended. Plus, oftentimes, the larger size is cheaper.

There are more brands of rice cookers with stainless steel inner pot besides the few examples above. If you want to do more research, make sure the inner pot is made of stainless steel. Many rice cookers exterior is also made of stainless steel or in stainless steel color.

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