How to cook arborio rice in a rice cooker? Probably the most important thing in preparing the perfect rice dish is selecting the correct type of rice for your recipe. Rice does not come in just one form – there are thousands of varieties worldwide as there are thousands of dishes you can make from it.
Some types of rice have subtle differences, such as Jasmine and Basmati, but the rice spectrum (if I may call it) stretches widely. In this post, we will tackle Arborio rice – short-grained white rice best known for making Risotto as on the picture.
A Few Words About Arborio Rice
Arborio rice was first cultivated in the town of Arborio, Italy. It is a short-grained rice that almost looks round. Arborio rice contains a higher amount of starch than long-grained rice because it undergoes less milling.
This high starch content is responsible for the rice’s iconic creaminess, but it can’t be produced by just cooking it instantly – it has to be prepared properly to ensure that we get the rich consistency it is known for.
Like Italian pasta, Arborio rice is prepared “al dente”, which means the grains should still be slightly firm once cooked. If you’re used to eating white long-grained rice like basmati rice, it may feel a bit raw but I promise you it isn’t.
Not to worry about making it squishy though, as Arborio rice can absorb much more water – think 4-5 cups of water to 1 cup of uncooked rice – and it still won’t be soggy!
In this article, we will explain how to prepare Arborio rice traditionally and by using a Zojirushi NS-ZCC10 rice cooker.
How to Prepare Arborio Rice the Traditional Way (Stove Top)
As mentioned earlier, Arborio rice is prepared slightly different than regular white rice. It takes a bit more patience and a little practice if you want the creamy texture. However, Arborio rice can still be cooked like regular white rice, but it will not have the rich consistency it is sought for.
Listed below are two traditional ways on how to cook Arborio rice.
You will need:
- Pot or saucepan
- Wooden spoon (preferably, to lessen the breaking of rice grains)
- Olive oil or butter or margarine (1 tbsp per 1 cup of rice)
- Water (or any type of stock if you want flavor – such as chicken or vegetable)
Remember that the ratio for cooking Arborio rice is 4:1 water to rice, so if you want to cook 2 cups of rice, use 8 cups of water. If you want it to be creamier, add ½ cup less water.
Steps in cooking non-creamy Arborio rice
- Pour water into desired container and heat until it starts to boil.
- Once boiling, add the oil (or butter or margarine).
- Add the Arborio rice to the boiling water. The boiling should stop once the rice is added.
- Slowly stir the rice until it starts to boil again.
- Cover the container with a lid and reduce the heat to a medium-low.
- Simmer the rice for 20 minutes. Do not stir the rice during this time. Let the rice absorb all the water undisturbed.
- Remove the rice from heat with the lid still on and let it steam for about 10 minutes.
After this, the Arborio rice should be done and ready to be served!
Steps in cooking creamy Arborio rice
For these steps, we will be using 1 cup of Arborio rice and 4 cups of water
- Heat a pot or saucepan over medium-high heat
- Add the oil (or butter or margarine)
- Add the rice and let it absorb the oil. Stir constantly for about a minute.
- Add 1 cup of water to the rice. This step is very important. Do not add all the water at once.
- Stir rice constantly until all the water has been absorbed and let it simmer. Lessen the heat to a medium.
- Add ½ cup of water while stirring. Repeat process until all water has been added.
- Pay attention to the rice’s texture by tasting it. Once it is creamy but firm, remove from heat. If the grains are still crunchy, continue cooking, but if the rice’s texture is soggy, it has been cooked too long.
And there you have it, the traditional methods of cooking Arborio rice.
Although cooking stove top is achievable, the best method to cook Arborio rice is through a rice cooker. Cooking traditionally requires repeated practice, skills, and a lot of time (not to mention the possibility of wasted Arborio rice!). Having a rice cooker do that job for you is like having an extra set of expert hands helping you in the kitchen.
Preparing Arborio rice in a rice cooker will help you make sure the rice will not come out raw or burned. It is very convenient and will save you so much time. Using a rice cooker is also a safer alternative as you no longer have to risk getting burned or scalded while cooking.
All you need is to put the ingredients in the device. You no longer have to stand in front of the pot and tend to it every single minute. If you don’t have a rice cooker yet, make sure to check our top picks.
How to Cook Arborio Rice in a Rice Cooker – Zojirushi NS-ZCC10
Below is a step-by step process on how to prepare Arborio rice using a Neuro Fuzzy Logic Zojirushi NS-ZCC10 rice cooker. Arborio rice is considered white rice so we will be using the White Rice option on the rice cooker.
Recipe for a delicious arborio rice
- Use the cup that goes with the Zojirushi NS-ZCC10 rice cooker to measure how much Arborio rice you are going to cook.
- Take out the rice cooker’s inner pan
- Put the desired amount of rice into the inner pan.
- Pour water and adjust the amount using the inner pan’s measuring scales based on how much rice you are going to cook. Place the inner pan on a level surface while measuring water to ensure accuracy. Do not use hot water. Make sure you are using the White Rice measuring scale
- Wipe the exterior of the inner pan and the interior of the rice cooker’s main body. Place the inner pan back into the rice cooker’s main body and close the lid.
- Plug in the rice cooker. Make sure there is nothing covering the steam vent and that there is no water residue outside the rice cooker.
- Use the Menu Key on the Control Panel to control the texture of the Arborio rice. Repeatedly press the Menu button until the arrow on the Control Panel is on the desired setting.
- Cooking White Rice has 3 settings: Regular/Sushi, Softer, and Harder
- SOFTER: Glutinous, soft and full
- HARDER: Crisp elasticity
- There is a different water measuring level on the inner pan to make sushi rice
- Cooking White Rice has 3 settings: Regular/Sushi, Softer, and Harder
- Press the Cooking/Reheat key on the Control Panel. Do not open the lid while the rice is cooking
- The Control Panel will display the time it takes until the rice is cooked. Once done, the rice cooker will make beeping sounds to signify that the rice is finished. The rice cooker automatically changes to Keep Warm mode once the rice is cooked.
- Using the spatula provided with the rice cooker, stir the rice to loosen it and prevent it from hardening or becoming sticky. Make sure to press the Reset Key and unplug the Rice cooker once you are done using it.
Below is a short video on how to make easy and tasty mushroom risotto in Tiger JAJ-A55U Rice Cooker. It’s one of the best small rice cookers on our list.
And voila! Your Arborio rice is ready! As Arborio rice is traditionally used in creamy dishes, you may also use the rice cooker’s Porridge settings. You can also make a risotto on the Zojirushi NS-ZCC10 rice cooker with a few extra ingredients.
If you have a different model or brand of rice cooker, click here for a general guide on how to use rice cookers.
In Summary, Arborio rice is a type of rice sought after for its creamy, rich texture. This can be achieved using the traditional method of cooking or using a rice cooker. Cooking this rice traditionally will require patience and practice to master, but cooking Arborio rice on a rice cooker is the best and most convenient way to cook it.
If you have any questions or suggestions, or even Arborio rice on rice cooker recipes, comment them below!