The 5 Best Microwave Rice Cookers for Hassle-Free Meals

Perfectly Cooked Rice
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Microwave cookers offer an easy way to prepare rice in half the time. Here are five of the best microwave rice cookers to help simplify your dinner prep.

Rice provides a simple, healthy base or side for so many meals.

But getting perfect, fluffy rice is a challenge. And getting any rice—perfect or mushy—takes time. A LOT of time.

The solution?

Microwaveable rice cookers offer a quick, hassle-free way to prepare rice in half the time it takes on the stovetop.

Plus, a quality rice cooker can make preparing perfect, fluffy rice a breeze, even for those who typically struggle in the kitchen.

To help you find a quality rice cooker that will deliver precisely cooked rice and grains in less time with less effort, we have reviewed the top 5 best microwave rice cookers on the market.

At a Glance: Our Favorite Microwave Rice Cookers

  1. Joseph Joseph 45002 M-Cuisine Microwave Rice Cooker
  2. Lekue Microwave Rice, Grain & Quinoa Cooker
  3. Handy Gourmet Eco-Friendly Microwave Pressure Cooker
  4. Lavino Glass Microwave Rice Cooker 62 oz
  5. Prep Solutions by Progressive Microwaveable Rice and Pasta Cooker

1. Joseph Joseph 45002 M-Cuisine Microwave Rice Cooker

Top Pick

This large 2-liter microwave rice cooker from Joseph Joseph is as stylish as it is functional and perfect for cooking up rice and grains for the entire family.

Why we love it:

Let’s start with the fact that this ingenious rice cooker is made so that each piece fits together not just for easy storage, but also during the cooking process. 

The strainer doubles as the rice bucket during cooking, fitting perfectly into the stylish outer hull. The steamer lid sits on top of the bucket and locks into place using the rice spoon which creates the perfect carrying handle.

With all these pieces in place, you don’t have to worry about losing any of the necessary tools while you wait for the rice to cook.

Who should use it:

One reason we chose this microwave rice cooker as our top choice is because it offers a little something for everyone.

The steamer lid secures not to the outer hull, but instead to the inner bucket. This helps contain any mess by blocking any bubbling water from dripping out over the sides–a necessary feature for anyone who is new to microwave rice cookers.

For the more seasoned chef, this cooker also has plenty to offer.

The strainer bucket comes with a collapsible handle for easy transport to and from the kitchen. The simple and stylish design is nice enough to bring right to the dinner table. And the capacity is large enough to feed an entire table of guests.

Specs and details:

  • Size: 2 liters, about 8 cups cooked rice
  • Material: BPA free plastic
  • Color: White, black, and orange
  • Can cook:  Rice and other grains

Pros:

  • Dishwasher safe
  • Comes with rice spoon and measuring cup
  • Lockable lid
  • Portable and stylish

Cons:

  • The white hull is prone to staining

2. Lekue Microwave Rice, Grain & Quinoa Cooker

When it comes to beauty by way of simplicity, it does not get better than the Lekue rice cooker. But this product isn’t all looks; it can cook up a mean bowl of rice, too.

Why we love it:

Aside from the sleek design, we love the deep thought that went into crafting this simple cooker.

The base is made of two molded walls with an air gap in between. This not only allows for the shelf that the silicon lid sits on but also lends itself to safe handling. Even when the contents of this cooker are boiling hot, the outer surface remains cool to the touch.

You can pull this cooker straight out of the microwave and set it in the center of the table without risking your hands or your lacquer.

Who should use it:

This simple-to-use rice cooker utilizes a silicon lid that sits deep into the base. And the lid itself is fringed with high walls to prevent any bubbly, starchy mess from oozing out into your microwave. This kind of feature makes this cooker perfect for newbies and distracted cooks alike.

The smaller capacity also means this product is great for couples and small families.

When filled to the brim, this cooker can make 4 cups of perfectly cooked rice, quinoa, barley, and even oatmeal.

Specs and details:

  • Size: 1 liter, 4 cups cooked rice
  • Material: BPA free plastic (body), 100% silicon (lid/strainer)
  • Color: Beige and olive green
  • Can cook: Rice and grains

Pros:

  • Strainer/lid is made of food-safe silicone, not plastic
  • Deep-set lid means no mess
  • Cool-to-touch design
  • Compact and stylish

Cons:

  • Lid does not lock on
  • Smaller capacity

3. Handy Gourmet Eco Friendly Microwave Pressure Cooker

The Handy Gourmet Eco microwave pressure cooker does it all. Chicken, veggies, and, of course, rice. Plus, it is one of the greenest choices you’ll find.

Why we love it:

There is a lot to love about this cooker, but one of its most distinguishing features is the material it’s made out of.

By necessity, microwave rice cookers have to be made out of microwave-safe material that won’t get overly hot even after twenty minutes inside. Because plastic checks these boxes and is lightweight and cheap, most rice cookers are made with this less-than-desirable material.

But this eco cooker has found an ingenious way to improve on this age-old model.

The base, lid, and spoon are made from a mixture of earth-friendly wheat fiber and BPA-free plastic. This creates a final product that uses 40% less plastic than similar-sized models. Plus, the unusual material makes for a unique texture with a more pleasing feel than traditional plastic.

Who should use it:

This microwave pressure cooker is a little advanced for those who easily get lost in the kitchen, but it is perfect for people with some experience with pressure cookers who want to do it all.

In addition to rice and grains, this cooker can steam meats and veggies and cook pasta. The product includes a recipe booklet to help you navigate the various functions and capabilities. With the extra-large capacity, this cooker makes it simple to create a full meal for the entire family.

The entire unit is dishwasher safe and easy to store.

Specs and details:

  • Size: About 2.5 liters, makes about 10 cups of rice
  • Material: Wheat fiber plastic mix
  • Color: Teal or beige
  • Can cook: Rice, veggies, meat, and pasta

Pros:

  • Earth-friendly design
  • Pressure cooking capabilities
  • Extra-large capacity
  • Versatile

Cons:

  • May be too large for small microwaves 

4. Lavino Glass Microwave Rice Cooker 62 oz

This classy glass rice cooker from Lavino makes serving up perfectly cooked rice for the entire family a snap. It’s extra durable and more environmentally friendly than other options, as well.

Why we love it:

It is all about the glass with this stylish microwave cooker.

The large capacity base is made with lead-free, extra-durable borosilicate glass. It is hot and cold-resistant and has the feel of a more expensive product.

The glass makes the perfect serving dish for your cooked rice. It also provides for a cleaner, chemical-free cooking process to protect the flavor of the rice and your health. While the product does use some plastic, it is still far more environmentally friendly than 100% plastic products.

Who should use it:

This is a great product for less-skilled and professional chefs looking to speed up their prep process.

The large-capacity bowl and removable strainer can cook a variety of foods, including pasta, couscous, and grains.

The venting lid snaps into place to prevent messes and spills. And comes in four flashy colors to fit your tastes and your kitchen decor. Plus, all three pieces are dishwasher safe for easy cleanup.

Specs and details:

  • Size: 1.8 liters, about 7 cups of cooked rice
  • Material: Glass, BPA free plastic
  • Color: Grey, orange, blue, or green
  • Can cook: Rice, pasta, and grains

Pros:

  • Durable and stylish glass base
  • Lockable lid
  • Removable strainer 
  • Heat and cold-resistant

Cons:

  • Heavier than other products

5. Prep Solutions by Progressive Microwaveable Rice and Pasta Cooker

If you are looking for the perfect cooking set that includes everything you’ll need for preparing a variety of dishes in record time, you’ve found it with this microwave rice cooker kit from Prep Solutions.

Why we love it:

This full-set cooker comes with everything you need.

In addition to the large capacity rice cooker with a lockable lid, you’ll get measuring cups, measuring spoons, a pasta measurer, and a serving spoon. The kit also includes a handy pasta strainer that attaches to the top of the base and a steamer insert.

All of these extra pieces mean you can use this cooker for more than just rice. 

It also works to steam veggies, cook pasta, and prepare a variety of grains. 

Who should use it:

This is the perfect kit for new homeowners, college students, and others looking to quickly stock up on the basics while investing in a simple cooking solution.

This cooker makes it simple to make a variety of meals and has a large enough capacity to assure leftovers. The lockable lid also means no chance for spills or messes in the microwave. 

All pieces are BPA-free and dishwasher safe.

Specs and details:

  • Size: About 2 liters, makes 8 cups of cooked rice
  • Material: BPA-free plastic
  • Color: Grey
  • Can cook: Rice, pasta, veggies, and grains

Pros:

  • Everything you need in one kit
  • Includes veggie steamer insert
  • Lockable lid
  • Lightweight

Cons:

  • Not overly stylish

Microwave Rice Cooker Buyer’s Guide

For a product meant to simplify the cooking process, microwave rice cookers have a lot going on. And there is a big difference between the best microwave rice cookers and the less than remarkable ones.

To help you decipher which is which and find just the right product for your needs, we have put together this handy buyer’s guide.

Capacity

Most rice cookers range from about 1 liter (4 cups of cooked rice) to about 2 liters (8 cups cooked rice). 

The smaller varieties are perfect for individuals and couples while the larger ones are a must if you are feeding more than three people. They are even some extra-large capacity cookers (like the Handy Gourmet) that can make more than 8 cups of cooked rice at a time–a must for large families and those who like to host.

Ease of Use

While all microwave rice cookers tend to be easier to use than other options, some go the extra mile in terms of simplicity.

If you want something you can start using right away, look for products that have a well-fitting lid, simple measurement markers, and not a lot else. 

If, on the other hand, you are okay with taking some time to read the instruction manual, there are plenty of great products out there that can do a lot more than cook rice. These cookers usually come with a lot of extra parts and more complex venting systems.

One last note on ease of use: many cookers require microwaves that can run on a low or medium power setting. Make sure you are able to program different power settings on your microwave before purchasing one of these types of cookers.

Versatility

Many cookers we’ve featured here can do more than just cook rice.

Almost all microwave cookers can cook a variety of grains, while a few can cook pasta as well. Those with extra features and inserts can even cook meats and vegetables.

If you are the kind of person with limited kitchen storage, then finding a multi-talented cooker is a great idea. If, on the other hand, you already have lots of cooking gadgets, opting for a simple rice cooker will save you some money.

Material

Ninety percent of the microwave rice cookers out there are made entirely of plastic. And just about every single one involves some plastic in its design.

Plastic is the price you have to pay for the convenience of cooking something like rice in the microwave.

If your goal is to avoid this less-than-earth-friendly material at all costs, you’ll probably be better off with another rice cooking method (see below). If you can handle a little plastic, there are some microwave cookers that are more environmentally-friendly (such as the Handy Gourmet Eco and the Lavino).

Other Options

Microwave rice cookers are super-simple to operate and affordable, but they aren’t for everyone.

If you prefer a product that doesn’t include any plastic, going the traditional route with a good pot, tight-fitting lid, and a timer is a better option.

Pressure cookers, rice steamers, and traditional rice cookers are also great options. These machines tend to be pricey and much bulkier than microwave types, but they can offer an extra degree of precision and are often more versatile.

Bottom Line: The Best Microwave Rice Cooker

Of all the microwave rice cookers we looked at, the Joseph Joseph 45002 M-Cuisine Microwave Rice Cooker was the best.

It offers a large cooking capacity in a compact form with an ingenious design that keeps everything together. The handy strainer basket utilizes a fold-down handle that makes transporting and cleaning the cooker a breeze. And the no-mess lid and dishwasher friendly material means clean up will be almost as easy as the recipe prep was.

Of course, if you are looking for something a little more green or something more versatile, we’ve included plenty of options in those categories above as well.