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What’s up with rice cookers?(r/EatCheapAndHealthy)
Film critic Roger Ebert wrote a book all about using rice cookers. It’s a simple machine, it has a heating element and a thermostat. All it does it heat up to boiling and turn down/off. It takes advantage of the fact that water stays at 100°C until it’s all been boiled off or absorbed, so when the thermostat goes over 100°C, it “knows” the rice is finished.
You can use it to cook just about anything that will do well at boiling: rice, pasta, soups, stews, steamed fish and veg, oatmeal. It’s lighter than a crock pot, safer to use than a hot plate, and you can leave it unattended. It won’t brown or fry anything, though.
If you already make great rice in your own kitchen and don’t already have a need for something to fill that, then you probably don’t need one. If you want to take it with you or just be more convenient than it already is, then think about getting one.