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The Best Brown Rice Cookers for 2021

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The Best Brown Rice Cookers for 2021

Your Ultimate Guide to Brown Rice Cookers

If you think white rice is a challenge, then you must not have tried brown rice yet. Cooking this healthy whole grain alternative is one challenge that many a home cook has tried to conquer to varying degrees of success. 

But like all good things, brown rice is definitely worth the challenge. When done right, it offers a unique flavor unlike any other variety. These rice cookers certainly have perfected the formula in their own right. If you want to start your journey to good brown rice, then this is the perfect place to start!

In a Hurry? This is the Best Brown Rice Cooker

Our Overall Rating:

4.6/5

With the Aroma ARC-6106, making the perfect brown rice is as easy as pressing a button! Thanks to the display menu that is easily navigable, you’ll never have dry or starchy brown rice again. In fact, the rice cooker is so versatile that you can make not just brown rice, but white rice and quick rice, too. Each function is easily accessible, making home-cooked meals easier and more exciting. 

Which Brown Rice Cooker is Best?

THE BEST OVERALL

Aroma ARC-6106 Rice Cooker

We named this Aroma model our best rice cooker for brown rice, and there’s no question why. The unique technology allows users to make mistake-free rice of almost any variety…

BEST DIGITAL BROWN RICE COOKER

Aroma ARC-150SB

When it comes to cooking rice, you’d be hard-pressed to find one as handy as a digital cooker. Rice cooking manually is hard enough. But the Aroma ARC-150SB leaves…

BEST SYNCHRONIZED BROWN RICE COOKER

Tiger JBV-A10UW

You’ve seen rice cookers with multiple cooking functions, but none have been as carefully crafted as the Tiger JBV-A10UW, and other reviews of the product would agree.

BEST MICOM BROWN RICE COOKER

Zojirushi NS-YAC18 Micom Rice Cooker

If you’ve never heard of fuzzy logic technology, it’s a kind of programming that essentially uses a micro computer chip (hence “micom”) to …

BEST BUDGET BROWN RICE COOKER

Panasonic SR-DF101 Rice Cooker

While there are plenty of rice cookers way below the Panasonic SR-DF101’s price point, this offers the most value. Just imagine being able to cook anything from brown rice, white rice…

BEST STEEL BROWN RICE COOKER
Cuisinart Stainless Steel CRC-400 Rice Cooker

There aren’t a lot of standard rice cookers that look like the Cuisinart Stainless Steel CRC-400. Its entire body is made of stainless steel, and it’s shaped like a square.

BEST SMART BROWN RICE COOKER
Zojirushi NS-TSC10

Yet another winner from this renowned Japanese brand is their NS-TSC10 model, a digital rice cooker with micro-computer fuzzy logic technology.

BEST QUICK RICE COOKER

Aroma ARC-914SBD

There are many rice cookers that claim to be time-efficient, but none are so successful as the Aroma ARC-914SBD. We named it one of the best rice cookers for brown rice…

BEST INDUCTION RICE COOKER

Tiger IH JKT-S10U-K

Induction heating rice cookers are great for making brown rice. Often, uneven heat distribution results in a bad meal no matter what the rice…

BEST ADVANCED COOKER

Aroma Digital Cool-Touch 2-8 Cup ARC-994SB

Aroma knows what the average consumer wants, and it shows in the ARC-944SB. The 8-cup rice cooker is fit for families who desire the convenience of simple rice cookers…

Can You Cook Brown Rice in a Rice Cooker?

If you’ve ever heard something going around along the lines of “brown rice doesn’t work in a rice cooker,” consider it a myth. Yes, you can use a cooker for brown rice. While some rice cookers are more equipped than others, you can actually make most varieties in a standard rice cooker unit, regardless of the presence of a brown rice setting. All it takes is knowing the correct ratio of water to grains.

Does Brown Rice Cook Well in a Rice Cooker?

The problem with brown rice is, most of the time, it’s cooked incorrectly. Even in restaurants, the end result is often too-mushy rice with an odd texture, proving all the more how cooking this variety can be tricky. So we don’t blame anyone who pushes away brown rice because of a bad bowl. But the secret to making good brown rice isn’t as difficult and elusive as it appears to be.

If you’re simply terrified to venture away from traditional white rice in the fear of messing it up, then worry not: most digital rice cookers nowadays have a built-in brown rice setting that’s guaranteed to make cooking the grain foolproof. Yes, sometimes all one needs is the perfect rice cooker for brown rice. That’s exactly what this guide is for, so stay tuned.

What is the Ratio of Brown Rice to Water in a Rice Cooker?

The tricky part about brown rice is the ratio of water to grains. In many cases, cooking with the standard 2:1 water to rice ratio results in undercooked, dry rice. But put too much, and you end up getting mushy grains that clump together, the flavor getting lost in the mix.

We’ll be the first to admit that there are plenty of controllable and uncontrollable factors that could cause bad brown rice. One of them is the brown rice to water ratio, and it’s possibly also the most important factor. So what exactly is the exact water to grains ratio for cooking brown rice? Is cooking brown rice really as hard as it seems?

One of the most successful methods is using the 2.5:1 ratio, adding 2.5 cups of water to each cup of brown rice using the standard measuring cup. Then, you’ll have to cook the rice around 60 to 80 minutes, longer than your standard white rice. This results in a fluffy, moist texture that is rich in flavor. Try it out and see for yourself!

The second method is the “pasta method.” You can cook rice the same way you make pasta, in that you first bring 12 cups of water to a boil, then add the grains, then drain it. Once the rice is drained, you add it back into the pan removed from the heat and steam it for around 10 minutes. The resulting rice is a little different in texture, but delicious nonetheless. However, the biggest drawback of this method is how much time it takes, because you aren’t using a rice cooker. That’s why we recommend using a rice cooker for brown rice to make the process a lot easier.

Does Brown Rice Need to be Soaked?

If you’re going by the first method we mentioned above, then soaking the rice is a great way to yield a tastier output. It can remove all the starchiness in the grains so you can bring out the flavor in each one.


How Long Does Brown Rice Take to Cook in a Rice Cooker?

A rice cooker for brown rice truly enhances the experience: it takes out the guesswork and therefore the ensuing frustration. With a rice cooker, really, all one has to do is get the measurements right. If there’s a designated program to cook brown rice specifically, then you’re pretty much good to go. The waiting time is what varies a little. Some products can cook brown rice in as little as 30-45 minutes, while others take an hour.

Best Brown Rice Cooker

ImageProductDetailsCheck Price
Aroma Housewares ARC-6106 Rice CookerAroma ARC-6106 Rice Cooker• Includes 15-hour delay timer
• Great for sizable families
• Wide variety of cooking settings
Check Prices on Amazon
ARC-150SBAroma ARC-150SB• Works as a slow cooker and food steamer
• Easily navigable menu
• Beginner-friendly
Check Prices on Amazon
Tiger JBVA Product Image 1Tiger JBV-A10UW• Tacook cooking pot
• Multiple cooking settings
• Reliable and capable
Check Prices on Amazon
Zojirushi NS-YAC18Zojirushi NS-YAC18 Micom Rice Cooker• Micro-computerized fuzzy logic technology
• Wide variety of menu settings
• Keep warm, delay timer, and reheating cycle features
Check Prices on Amazon
Panasonic SR-DF101.jpg 2Panasonic SR-DF101 Rice Cooker• Beginner-friendly
• Acts as a food steamer
• Compact and protable
Check Prices on Amazon
Cuisinart CRC-400 Rice CookerCuisinart Stainless Steel CRC-400 Rice Cooker • Stainless steel exterior for better rice
• Easy to clean parts
• Enhanced steam vent
Check Prices on Amazon
Zojirushi NS-TSC10 Micom Rice Cooker and WarmerZojirushi NS-TSC10 Rice Cooker• Unique variety of settings
• Includes delay timer and extended keep warm
• Includes a steam basket
Check Prices on Amazon
Aroma 8-Cup Digital Cool-Touch Rice Cooker ARC-914SBDAroma ARC-914SBD• Easy to use
• Simple operation
• Multiple functions
Check Prices on Amazon
Tiger JKT-S10U IH Stainless Steel Multi-Functional Rice Cooker With Tacook Cooking PlateTiger IH JKT-S10U-K • Stainless steel for better cooking
• Multiple varieties of cooking settings
• Easy to clean
Check Prices on Amazon
Aroma 8-Cup Digital Cool-Touch Rice Cooker ARC-994SBDigital Cool-Touch 2-8 Cup ARC-994SB• Ideal for small to medium families
• Cool-touch surface
• Multiple one-button cooking settings
Check Prices on Amazon

Let’s Go Over Each Brown Rice Cooker

Our Overall Rating:

4.6/5

We named this Aroma model our best rice cooker for brown rice, and there’s no question why. The unique technology allows users to make mistake-free rice of almost any variety, taking the guesswork out of your kitchen time. It has received wonderful customer reviews on Amazon, additionally.

This labor-saving ARC-6106 rice cooker allows you to cook brown rice with just the press of a button. Simply prepare your grains, add the needed amount of water, and you’re good to go. The straightforward nature makes the unit all the more attractive to beginners and busy home cooks alike. Plus, with 12 different cooking functions, you’ll never run out of food options to try.

Pros and Cons of the Aroma ARC-6106

ProsCons
✔️ Makes 12 cups of cooked rice
✔️ Multiple cooking options
✔️ Includes a 15-hour delay timer for meal prep
✔️ Includes a handle for better portability
✖️ A little pricey
✖️ Can be difficult to clean

Our Overall Rating:

4.6/5

When it comes to cooking rice, you’d be hard-pressed to find one as handy as a digital cooker. Rice cooking manually is hard enough. But the Aroma ARC-150SB leaves all the work to the device, so your brown rice comes out warm, fluffy, and moist — all with minimal effort from the cook. 

This unit has an 8-cup cooked rice capacity, making it fit for a family of 5. If you’re always on-the-go and don’t exactly have time for kitchen duties, you can make use of the “flash rice” setting to cut your cooking time significantly. Beginner-friendly and straightforward, this cool-touch rice cooker also includes a keep warm function that turns on automatically once rice is cooking. Additionally, it comes with a measuring cup and rice spatula.

The best part is that this unit is very affordable. In fact, we even hailed it as our top 1 in our guide to the best cheap cookers in the market. 

Pros and Cons of the Aroma ARC-150SB

ProsCons
✔️ Large capacity
✔️ Functions as a slow cooker and food steamer
✔️ Simple operations
✔️ Keep warm and timer settings
✖️ Can only cook white and brown rice
✖️ Not suitable for small households because of its size

You’ve seen rice cookers with multiple cooking functions, but none have been as carefully crafted as the Tiger JBV-A10UW, and other reviews of the product would agree. In fact, we’ve named this as a top contender of best rice cooker in our best rice cooker guide. With its “tacook” synchronized cooking function, you’re able to make food on the cooking plate and your brown rice below. Perfect for the time-saving yet healthy meal your family will enjoy! 

But we’ve named it among the best rice cookers for brown rice for a reason: with the brown rice setting, you’ll be able to make one-touch brown rice. No fuss, no hassle. The non-stick inner pan is both easy to clean and removable, reducing labor in the kitchen. Easily make 10 cups of cooked rice in a single cycle.

Pros and Cons of the Tiger JBV-A10U

ProsCons
✔️ Best for beginners
✔️ All accessories are dishwasher safe for easy cleanup
✔️ Easy to clean
✔️ Solid and reliable
✖️ Short lifespan
✖️ The inner pot is prone to nicks and scratches

Our Overall Rating:

3.6/5

If you’ve never heard of fuzzy logic technology, it’s a kind of programming that essentially uses a micro computer chip (hence “micom”) to perform certain tasks the way a human would. In the case of the NS-YAC18 rice cooker, you’re getting a fully automated device that makes precise adjustments the way we would when manually crafting a home-cooked meal. Just imagine how this would work with brown rice.

Thanks to its versatility, cooking brown rice, white rice, and more is possible with the touch of a button. In fact, the inner pot lets you create a wide array of food for your breakfast, lunch, dinner, or snack time. The non stick inner pot can accommodate food of any kind from yogurt to eggs, and even a jambalaya for an alternative rice dish. Despite this, it’s still easy to use; no need to read a lengthy instruction manual just to make cooked brown or white rice.

But that’s not all the NS-YAC18 has to offer. Behold its Umami cooking setting which soaks and steams the grains longer to enhance the flavor, letting you create restaurant-quality rice. Apart from this, you’re getting an automatic keep warm, an extended keep warm feature, a delay timer, and a reheating cycle to make not-so-on-time meals better. The additional items included in the package (a measuring cup and a spatula) are super easy to clean, along with the non-stick inner pot.

Pros and Cons of the NS-YAC18

ProsCons
✔️ Fuzzy logic technology
✔️ Includes specific programs for brown rice, white rice, etc.
✔️ Has an "umami" cooking setting
✔️ Fit for medium-sized households
✖️ Expensive
✖️ Might not be beginner-friendly
✖️ Heavy

While there are plenty of rice cookers way below the Panasonic SR-DF101’s price point, this offers the most value. Just imagine being able to cook anything from brown rice, white rice, glutinous rice, and even mixed rice with the single press of a button. The fuzzy logic technology aids in making each cooking cycle yield perfect rice every time. It makes 10 cups of cooked rice, perfect for medium-sized households.

But while all that is pretty much standard, what we love most about this unit is its compact design and easy to use controls. Each button includes a graphic label for white rice, quick cook/steam, brown rice, and porridge/soup. The brown rice option ensures each grain is neither undercooked nor overcooked, so you’re able to turn even skeptics into hardcore brown rice fans. Just check out its customer reviews on Amazon!

Pros and Cons of the Panasonic SR-DF101

ProsCons
✔️ Graphic labels for easy navigation
✔️ Multi-purpose rice cooker
✔️ Clean and compact design
✔️ Fit for medium-sized households
✖️ Possibly too big for small households

There aren’t a lot of standard rice cookers that look like the Cuisinart Stainless Steel CRC-400. Its entire body is made of stainless steel, and it’s shaped like a square. If you prefer sleek, utilitarian-looking kitchen appliances, this one won’t let you down. 

So why have we declared it a top-notch rice cooker for brown rice? While it does fall under the category of one-touch cookers, its quality material and steam vent ensure brown rice cooking is easy and convenient. It has an automatic keep-warm function along with a stainless steel food steam basket, making it a time-saving appliance. You can also use the steam tray as a rinser or washer to clean your grains before popping them in the inner pot. The best part is, it can make 4-7 cups of cooked rice at a price that is affordable. 

Interestingly enough, it looks similar to the Breville Risotto Plus, another strong contender for a good cooker for brown rice.

Pros and Cons of the Cuisinart Stainless Steel CRC-400

ProsCons
✔️ Budget-Friendly
✔️ Doubles as a steamer
✔️ High quality, brushed stainless steel
✖️ Lack of innovative functions and features
✖️ Lack of menu selections to cook different types of rice

Yet another winner from this renowned Japanese brand is their NS-TSC10 model, a digital rice cooker with micro-computer fuzzy logic technology. Part of our top picks for best small cookers, this thing can easily accommodate 5.5 cups of uncooked rice, yielding 10 servings of cooked rice for the whole family to consume. 

And it can cook almost any variety, too: white rice, brown rice, jasmine rice, you name it. This cooker makes all that and more easier for the home chef with its programmed rice cooking functions. Additionally, it offers an auto-keep warm setting, a delay timer, and settings for non-rice food such as cake and porridge. Yum!

Pros and Cons of the NS-TSC10

ProsCons
✔️ Compact build
✔️ Advanced technology
✔️ Variety of menu settings
✔️ Delay timer
✔️ Automatic and Extended Keep Warm
✔️ Comes with a steam basket
✖️ Pricey for its size
✖️ Complicated for beginners

There are many rice cookers that claim to be time-efficient, but none are so successful as the Aroma ARC-914SBD. We named it one of the best rice cookers for brown rice for a few reasons, but mainly for its flash rice function that cuts cooking time in half. It doesn’t surprise us to find out that it garners rave reviews from customers on Amazon, too.

Alternatively, you can also use the lengthier brown rice setting, one of the many cooking options that allows the rice cooker to precisely adjust its settings depending on the dish to be made. As for the specs, it can accommodate 4 cups of uncooked rice, yielding 8 cups of cooked rice. It’s ideal for medium-sized households.

Pros and Cons of the Aroma ARC-914SBD

ProsCons
✔️ Flash rice function cuts cooking time in half
✔️ Yields 2 to 8 servings of rice
✔️ Portable and lightweight
✔️ Beginner-friendly
✖️ Not suitable for larger households

Induction heating rice cookers are great for making brown rice. Often, uneven heat distribution results in a bad meal no matter what the rice variety, but since it’s so much trickier with brown, the added help is welcome. The Tiger JKT’s induction heating technology utilizes the entire inner pot to spread the heat thoroughly so no grain is undercooked or overcooked.

This unit comes in a cup capacity of 5.5 cups of uncooked rice and 10 cups cooked rice. Although a little on the heavy side, the handles make it easy to carry. Additionally, it has a multitude of cooking options: everything from white rice, brown rice, quick rice, ultra, mixed, jasmine, oatmeal, bread baking, and more is at the tip of one’s fingers.

Of course, no Tiger unit is complete without the “tacook” synchro-cooking feature that lets you cook food and rice in the same cycle. So for those who simply want to do away with cooking up a storm in the kitchen, you don’t need other reviews to tell you that this is the best rice cooker for you. Also included are a keep warm function, delay timer, and non-stick inner pot.

Pros and Cons of the Tiger IH JKT-S10U

ProsCons
✔️ Stainless steel design
✔️ Detachable parts for easy cleaning
✖️ Lack of accessories and items
✖️ Heavy weight

Aroma knows what the average consumer wants when cooking, and it shows in the ARC-944SB. The 8-cup rice cooker is fit for families who desire the convenience of simple rice cookers with the advanced technology of more modern ones.

But despite being advanced, the ARC-994SB remains easily navigable. It contains a menu right on the front that has buttons for the various cooking functions the device offers. The brown rice setting is laid out in bold letters, making cooking more convenient than ever. Users particularly commend the unit’s impeccable brown rice function, and we agree! The grains come out perfectly, not too moist nor too dry. If you want to really appreciate brown rice, go with this unit.

Pros and Cons of the Aroma ARC-994SB

ProsCons
✔️ Yields 8 servings of cooked rice
✔️ Makes single-pot meals easier
✔️ Rice cooker stays cool even when cooking
✔️ Perfect for smaller households and single dwellers
✖️ Water can boil over
✖️ Difficult to clean compared to a standard rice cooker

Brown Rice Cookers Comparison

Brown Rice CookerBrandPriceFunctionalityQualityTotal RatingCheck Price on Amazon
Aroma Housewares ARC-6106 Rice CookerAroma ARC-6106 Rice Cooker9999Check Prices on Amazon
ARC-150SBAroma ARC-150SB10888.7Check Prices on Amazon
Tiger JBVA Product Image 1Tiger JBV-A10UW8998.7Check Prices on Amazon
Zojirushi NS-YAC18Zojirushi NS-YAC18 Micom Rice Cooker9988.7Check Prices on Amazon
Panasonic SR-DF101.jpg 2Panasonic SR-DF101 Rice Cooker10788.3Check Prices on Amazon
Cuisinart CRC-400 Rice CookerCuisinart Stainless Steel CRC-400 Rice Cooker 8888Check Prices on Amazon
Zojirushi NS-TSC10 Micom Rice Cooker and WarmerZojirushi NS-TSC108988.3Check Prices on Amazon
Aroma 8-Cup Digital Cool-Touch Rice Cooker ARC-914SBDAroma ARC-914SBD9998Check Prices on Amazon
Tiger JKT-S10U IH Stainless Steel Multi-Functional Rice Cooker With Tacook Cooking PlateTiger IH JKT-S10U-K 8888Check Prices on Amazon
Aroma 8-Cup Digital Cool-Touch Rice Cooker ARC-994SBAroma Digital Cool-Touch 2-8 Cup ARC-994SB98.798.9Check Prices on Amazon

Final Note

White rice, brown rice. At the end of the day, a good rice cooker should be able to cook good rice no matter what the variety, right? But not all products were made equal, and some units are a more uncannily fit for making fluffy brown rice than others.

We hope this guide has been helpful! Want to look at other products? Read our reviews to learn more about all things rice cookers and rice.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which Brand of Rice Cooker is the Best?

The best-selling rice cookers include brands such as Aroma Housewares, Instant Pot, Dash, Black + Decker, Cuckoo, and more. These companies are known to manufacture high-quality yet affordable products, and each one has their own unique spin on what makes the perfect rice cooker.

If you’re looking for functions and features instead of a brand, some things you should be keeping an eye on are:

    1. Keep-warm function. A keep-warm or extended keep warm is absolutely vital if you want to come home to great rice without worrying that it’s going to go cold.
    2. Delay timer. Not quite a necessity, but is a great tool for more flexible cooking.
    3. Food steamer basket. A steam tray accessory allows the user to cook faster and be more flexible with meals without spending too much.
    4. Rice capacity. Can it cook rice (and food) for all family members?
    5. Multiple food settings. If you want to experiment a little, go for a rice cooker with programmed cooking functions to make your time in the kitchen way easier. It can range from white and brown rice, sushi rice, basmati rice, etc. settings to designated functions for cake, rice pudding, and yogurt.
    6. Cooker type. Do you prefer a pressure cooker or a standard cooker? 
    7. Power cord. If you’re prone to taking your cooker with you on family outings, you might want to look for a retractable power cord for portability purposes.
    8. Capacity to function as other appliances. Some rice cookers, such as Instant Pot, Zojirushi, Cuckoo, and other models, can cook more than just rice, able to double as a pressure cooker, steamer, etc. If you’re after getting more from a single appliance, this is worthy of your consideration. 
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Ji-hyun

Hailing from California, USA. Ji-hyun is a Korean American 🇰🇷🇺🇸 with two growing boys who eat their weight in rice each week. After graduating UCLA & becoming a mom she started We Know Rice as a guide for all the students and moms out there looking to cook healthy and filling meals.

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