How to Cook Rice in a Microwave Rice Cooker: Ultimate Guide to Fluffy Rice Every Time

How to Cook Rice in a Microwave Rice Cooker: Quickly cook rice to perfection! Rinse rice, combine with water in your microwave rice cooker, and cook on high. Shift to 70% power for fine-tuning. Use hot pads, let it stand, then fluff. Ideal for white, brown, or wild rice. Simple and foolproof!

Have you ever ended up with burnt, mushy rice from the stovetop? Or found yourself scrubbing a sticky pot for ages after making rice?

Cooking rice can be a real hassle. But using a microwave rice cooker makes the process quick, convenient, and foolproof.

Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about cooking fluffy, delicious rice in the microwave. Whether you prefer white or brown rice, I’ll walk you through water ratios, microwave settings, and special tips to take your rice game to the next level.

Key Facts:

  • Microwave rice cookers can cook white rice in just 12-15 minutes.
  • The typical rice to water ratio is 1:2.
  • Rinsing rice before cooking helps prevent stickiness.
  • Leftover rice should be refrigerated and consumed within 3-5 days.
  • Reheating rice in the microwave with a bit of liquid helps restore moisture.
(Source: Expert Team Research)

How to Cook Rice in a Microwave Rice Cooker

Microwave rice cookers provide a fast, easy way to cook rice that turns out light and fluffy. The specially-designed lids and vent holes allow excess pressure and steam to escape. This prevents soggy rice with a mushy texture.

How To Cook Rice In A Microwave Rice Cooker
How to Cook Rice in a Microwave Rice Cooker

Nearly all types of rice can be made in a microwave rice cooker, including white, brown, basmati, sushi, and jasmine rice. The basics are the same, but cooking times and water ratios vary slightly between rice varieties.

Ingredients You’ll Need

To cook rice in the microwave, you only need two ingredients:

  • Raw rice (any variety)
  • Water

That’s it! For enhanced flavor, you can use homemade or low-sodium canned broth instead of plain water.

The Importance of Rice-to-Water Ratio

Getting the correct rice-to-water ratio is crucial for cooking rice in the microwave. Here are some general guidelines:

White rice – Use a 1:2 rice to water ratio. For 1 cup of rice, add 2 cups water.

Brown rice – Use a 1:2.25 rice to water ratio. For 1 cup of rice, add 2 1/4 cups water. The extra water helps compensate for the longer cook time.

Wild rice – Use a 1:3 rice to water ratio due to the very long cook time. For 1 cup wild rice, add 3 cups water.

Equipment Essentials

To cook rice in the microwave, you’ll need:

  • A microwave-safe rice cooker with vented lid
  • Microwave-safe bowl (if your rice cooker doesn’t have a nonstick pot)
  • Fork or wooden spoon for stirring
  • Measuring cups
  • Hot pads (to remove the hot cooker)
  • Rice paddle or wooden spoon (for fluffing rice after cooking)

It’s best to use a rice cooker designed specifically for microwave cooking. The vented lid allows steam to escape during cooking which is crucial.

How to Choose the Right Microwave Settings

Microwave wattage and cook times will vary based on your particular appliance. Here are some general microwave setting guidelines:

Cook on high (100% power) for the first 5 minutes of cooking to bring the water to a boil.

After 5 minutes, reduce power to 70-80% and continue cooking for the remaining time. This prevents overflow or boilover.

Cook white rice for 10-12 minutes on low after the initial 5 minute boil. Brown rice needs 15-20 minutes on low.

For microwaves above 1,000 watts, use a lower power level around 60-70% after boiling to avoid burning.

Let the rice stand for 5 minutes before opening the lid and fluffing with a fork or paddle. The steam continues cooking the rice.

Step-by-Step Cooking Instructions

Follow these simple steps for foolproof rice every time:

Rinse and drain the raw rice in a mesh strainer until the water runs clear. This prevents stickiness.

Add the rinsed rice and water to the microwave rice cooker. Use the recommended rice-to-water ratios.

Cover the rice cooker and vent the lid. Place in the microwave.

Cook on high for 5 minutes to bring the water to a boil.

After 5 minutes, stir the rice gently. Reduce microwave power to 70-80% and cook for 10-15 minutes more for white rice or 15-20 for brown.

Remove the rice cooker from the microwave carefully using hot pads.

Keep covered and let stand for 5 minutes to finish steaming.

Open the lid, close the vent, and fluff the rice with a fork or paddle. Enjoy hot!

Tip: For enhanced flavor, substitute homemade broth or canned, low-sodium broth for the cooking water.

How to Fluff Your Rice for the Best Texture

Fluffing is a vital step to ensure your rice turns out light and fluffy, not gummy or mushy. Here’s how to do it:

After cooking, keep the lid on for 5 minutes to allow the rice to finish steaming.

Release the steam from the vent. Close it to trap heat.

Use a fork, paddle, or wooden spoon to gently turn and fold the rice. This separates the grains.

Fluff from the bottom up to evenly distribute moisture. The rice should be light and fluffy.

Avoid packing or mashing the rice when fluffing. Gently fold and mix instead.

Fluffing ensures your rice has the proper moisture level and aerated texture when serving.

Tips for Cooking Rice in a Microwave Rice Cooker

Follow these tips and tricks for fantastic rice every time using a microwave rice cooker:

Why Rinsing Rice Matters

Rinsing removes excess starch from the rice surface that can make it gummy or sticky.

Place rice in a fine mesh strainer and rinse under cool water, stirring with your hand.

Rinse until the water runs clear, about 1-2 minutes.

Drain well before adding the rice and cooking water to the cooker.

Key Tip: Rinsing white rice is especially important before cooking. Brown rice can be rinsed but contains less surface starch.

Seasoning Tips for Flavorful Rice

For the best results, season your rice after cooking. Here are some tips:

Stir in a pat of butter or drizzle of olive oil after fluffing. This adds richness.

Sprinkle with salt, herbs, spices, or lemon juice. Start with a small amount and adjust to taste.

Mix in diced raw veggies like scallions, bell pepper, or tomato just before serving. They’ll soften slightly.

Stir in chopped fresh herbs right before eating. Heat diminishes their flavor.

Swap the cooking water for broth, juice, or coconut milk for built-in flavor.

What to Do If Your Rice Is Too Dry or Mushy

No one wants a pot of rice that turns out overcooked or undercooked. Here are some troubleshooting tips:

If your rice is too dry:

  • Stir in a splash of hot water or broth after cooking. Cover and let steam for 2-3 minutes to add moisture.

If your rice is mushy:

Use a fork to fluff and separate grains after cooking. This distributes moisture.

For added texture, toss fluffed rice with raw, diced veggies like bell pepper before serving.

Using Alternative Liquids for Cooking

Don’t limit yourself to plain water for cooking rice. Consider using:

  1. Homemade broth – Adds savory flavor without too much salt.
  2. Canned, low-sodium broth – Provides seasoning without dry rice.
  3. Coconut milk – For creamy, tropical-flavored rice. Use a 1:1 rice to milk ratio.
  4. Juices – Try apple, pineapple, or orange juice for a fruit-infused rice. Adjust liquid ratio.
  5. Wine or beer – For sophisticated rice dishes. Use less liquid than water.

Common Problems and How to Avoid Them

Having trouble getting perfect rice results each time? Here are some common pitfalls and solutions:

How to Prevent Rice from Sticking or Burning

Problem: The rice sticks to the bottom of the cooker and burns.

Solution: Use a nonstick rice cooker and stir rice halfway through cooking. Reduce microwave power if your appliance is very high wattage.

How to Cook Rice for One Person

Problem: It’s hard to achieve the right rice-to-water ratio for single servings.

Solution: Use a small 4 cup rice cooker. Cook 1/2 cup rice with 1 cup water. Or freeze extra portions.

FAQs About Cooking Rice in a Microwave Rice Cooker

How long do you cook 2 cups of rice in a microwave rice cooker?

Cook 2 cups rice with 4 cups water for 12-15 minutes total. Boil for 5 minutes then finish cooking on 70% power for 10 minutes.

How much water do I use for 2 cups of rice?

The standard rice to water ratio is 1:2. So for 2 cups rice, use 4 cups water.

Do you use hot or cold water in a microwave rice cooker?

It’s best to use cold water and allow the microwave to heat it up. Hot water from the tap leads to a loss of heat when adding the rice, affecting the cooking.

What is the ratio of water to rice in a microwave rice cooker?

The basic ratio is 2 parts water for every 1 part rice. So for 1 cup rice use 2 cups water. Adjust the ratio slightly up for brown and wild rice.


Cooking rice in a microwave rice cooker couldn’t be easier. With the right rice-to-water ratio, microwave settings, and a few simple tips, you’ll get tender grains with a light, fluffy texture every time.

The key is using a vented cooker, rinsing the rice first, and fluffing the finished rice before serving. Monitor water levels and adjust cook times as needed based on your microwave wattage.

With a little practice, you’ll be able to cook white or brown rice to perfection in minutes. Say goodbye to burnt pans and crunchy, uneven rice. Get the tools and techniques down for microwave rice success!

What tips do you have for making amazing rice in the microwave? Let me know in the comments!

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Jennifer Smith
Jennifer Smith

Jennifer Smith is a respected kitchenware expert with over 10 years of experience in product development, sourcing, and quality control. She creates innovative and practical products for leading brands and retailers, helping people cook with ease. Jennifer's passion for cooking and helping others has made her an influential figure in the kitchenware industry.