Last Updated on April 25, 2023 by Lauren Beck
Cooking rice and steaming vegetables are two common methods of preparing food. While some people use a rice cooker to steam their food, others prefer to use a separate steamer.
But what is the difference between a rice cooker and a steamer, and which one is right for you? This article will explore the differences between a rice cooker and a steamer.
Differences Between a Rice Cooker and a Steamer
Here are some of the key differences between a rice cooker and a steamer:
- Purpose: A rice cooker is designed specifically to cook rice, while a steamer is designed to cook a variety of foods, including vegetables, seafood, and dumplings.
- Cooking method: A rice cooker uses a combination of heat and steam to cook rice, while a steamer uses only steam.
- Capacity: Rice cookers come in a range of sizes, but they are typically designed to cook one to two cups of rice at a time. Steamers are available in various sizes, from small countertop models to large commercial steamers.
What Are Rice Cookers?
A rice cooker is an electric kitchen appliance that cooks rice automatically. Rice cookers use a combination of heat and steam to cook rice and typically have a non-stick inner pot that can be easily removed and cleaned.
What Are Steamers?
A steamer is a kitchen appliance that uses steam to cook food. Steamers are available in a range of sizes, from small countertop models to large commercial steamers, and can be used to cook a variety of foods, including vegetables, seafood, and dumplings.
Similarities Between a Rice Cooker and a Steamer
Despite their differences, there are some similarities between a rice cooker and a steamer:
- Both use steam: Both a rice cooker and a steamer use steam to cook food.
- Both are easy to use: Both a rice cooker and a steamer are easy to use and require minimal preparation.
- Both are convenient: Both a rice cooker and a steamer are convenient appliances that can save you time and effort in the kitchen.
What Is the Best Rice Cooker and Steamer?
There are many brands and models of rice cookers and steamers on the market, so choosing one that fits your needs and budget is important.
Some popular rice cooker brands include Zojirushi, Aroma, and Tiger , while popular steamer brands include Oster, Hamilton Beach, and Black+Decker.
Can You Use Rice Cooker as Steamer Without Rice?
Yes, you can use a rice cooker as a steamer without rice. Many rice cookers come with a steaming basket that can be used to steam vegetables, seafood, and other foods.
Can You Steam Vegetables in a Rice Cooker?
Yes, you can steam vegetables in a rice cooker. Simply fill the rice cooker with water, place the vegetables in the steaming basket, and set the timer.
How Do You Steam Buns in a Rice Cooker?
To steam buns in a rice cooker, place the buns in a steaming basket and place the basket in the rice cooker. Add water to the rice cooker, close the lid, and set the timer. Steam the buns for 10-15 minutes or until they are hot and fluffy.
What Happens When You Cook Rice in a Steamer?
Cooking rice in a steamer is not recommended, as steaming rice requires a specific ratio of water to rice that is different from cooking rice in a rice cooker or on the stovetop. Cooking rice in a steamer can result in undercooked or overcooked rice.
What Is the Disadvantage of Steam Cooker?
The main disadvantage of a steamer is that it can be more difficult to clean than a rice cooker. Steamers often have multiple compartments and parts that need to be disassembled and cleaned thoroughly.
Is a Rice Cooker and Steamer Worth It?
Whether a rice cooker and steamer are worth it depends on your cooking needs and preferences. A rice cooker is a great investment if you cook rice frequently and want a convenient and easy-to-use appliance.
If you enjoy steaming a variety of foods and want a versatile appliance, a steamer may be a better choice. Some people choose to purchase a combination rice cooker and steamer to get the best of both worlds.
A rice cooker and a steamer are two kitchen appliances that use steam to cook food. While a rice cooker is designed specifically to cook rice, a steamer can be used to cook a variety of foods, including vegetables, seafood, and dumplings. Both appliances have their pros and cons, and the best choice depends on your cooking needs and preferences. By considering the differences and similarities between a rice cooker and a steamer, you can decide which appliance is right for you.