Rice comes in many different types, and one of the most alluring is sticky rice.
Also known as glutinous rice or sweet rice, you can find many varieties of sticky rice, coming from Japan and China, as well as Thailand.
Typically, sticky rice is steamed, and we’ll show you how to do that below.
Did you know, though, that you can also make sticky rice in a rice cooker?
By learning how to make sticky rice in your rice cooker, you’ll find you cut down on the number of steps needed, and you won’t notice any different in the quality of the rice on your plate.
Perfect served with curries, stir-fries, or any dishes with sauces, pick up clumps of sticky rice with your fingers and use it to mop up the sauce. Sticky rice, like coconut rice, also works wonderfully with desserts, mango sticky rice, for instance.
- I. What Makes Sticky Rice so Sticky?
- II. How to Make Sticky Rice in a Rice Cooker
- III. How To Steam Sticky Rice Like a Pro
- IV. What Is The Best Rice for Making Sticky Rice?
- V. Troubleshooting Problems with Sticky Rice
- VI. Storing and Freezing Your Sticky Rice
- VII. How to Serve Sticky Rice from a Rice Cooker
- VIII. Conclusion
I. What Makes Sticky Rice so Sticky?
There are three core reasons that sticky rice has such a sticky consistency:
- The right type of rice – in this case, jasmine rice. If you use the wrong type of rice, it will not have the requisite sticky texture
- Pre-soaking the rice in water for 4 to 10 hours – more on the below – delivers the stickiness you crave in the best sticky rice
- Steaming rather than boiling your sticky rice is the other way in which you get that trademark texture
With those basics in place, how do you go about making sticky rice in a rice cooker, then?
II. How to Make Sticky Rice in a Rice Cooker
Now, you can certainly use a stovetop to make sticky rice, but using your rice cooker makes things even easier. Not only will you need fewer steps when you’re using a rice cooker, but you’ll also enjoy failsafe timing.
Here’s what to do…
What You Need
First, grab the following simple supplies:
- Rice cooker
- Jasmine rice
What to Do
- Measure out 2 cups of rice and 2.5 cups of water. Put this into your rice cooker
- Let the rice stand soaking for between 4 and 10 hours. The longer you wait, the better your sticky rice will turn out
- Add ½ teaspoon of salt to the rice cooker, close the lid, and switch the rice cooker on
- Cook your sticky rice for 15 to 20 minutes. If your rice cooker comes with an automatic timer, let the machine run until the cycle is complete
- Let the rice stand for at least 10 minutes before serving
Believe it or not, that’s all you need to do if you want great sticky rice the easy way.
III. How To Steam Sticky Rice Like a Pro
How about if you don’t have a rice cooker and you prefer not using a pan of boiling water to cook rice?
Well, steaming this stuff also works well. You’ll need to account for a lengthier soaking time, but making sticky rice this way is still super-simple.
What You Need
- Large wok
- Steamer basket
What to Do
- Put 3 cups of rice into a large pot. Cover the rice with 3 inches of lukewarm water and allow the rice to soak for 6 to 24 hours. The longer you leave the rice soaking, the better
- Drain the rice once it has soaked and pop it into a steamer basket
- Boil 3 inches of water in a large pot or wok and place the steamer over this. Ensure the rice doesn’t touch the water. Cover the pot and steam for 15 to 20 minutes
- Stir your rice so the top layer sits at the bottom of the steamer. Steam the rice for 5 more minutes and you’re good to go!
IV. What Is The Best Rice for Making Sticky Rice?
You should look for bags of sticky rice labeled as follows:
- Sweet rice
- Glutinous rice
- Long-grain sticky rice
While you could use regular white or brown rice, you won’t end up with the same level of stickiness as using the real thing.
How about when the rice doesn’t come out right, though?
V. Troubleshooting Problems with Sticky Rice
As with all types of rice, you may not get sticky rice right first time round, but don’t worry. You’ll find fixing issues with this type of rice is pretty straightforward.
If you are cooking your sticky rice on the stovetop – we do not recommend this – and you see that it’s still too watery, just keep on cooking it for 5 or 10 minutes more.
For rice that still seems undercooked, add some more water and extend the cooking time by a few minutes.
When you’re cooking sticky rice in a rice cooker and you see that’s it’s undercooked, just shut the lid and let it sit there for a while with the power off. The residual heat continues cooking the rice.
For undercooked steamed rice, just keep on steaming it until you hit the texture and consistency you desire.
More important than the method you use is the soaking time. Do not skip this if you want that trademark texture. Also, avoid adding too much water or you’ll be left with a gloopy and unappetizing mess.
VI. Storing and Freezing Your Sticky Rice
Now, what can you do if you end up with some leftover sticky rice?
Well, luckily you can refrigerate this and keep it for 2 or 3 days if you fancy keeping some in reserve.
Alternatively, you can freeze sticky rice and keep it for up to 2 months frozen. First, portion out the sticky rice into individual portions then pop it into an airtight container or a freezer bag.
As with all rice, though, you’ll find sticky rice is best served fresh. Once you master portion control in your rice cooker, you shouldn’t need to cook up more rice than required.
VII. How to Serve Sticky Rice from a Rice Cooker
Sticky rice is a staple in Asian cuisine, and it’s used in a range of dishes, from curries and stir-fries to dumplings and even deserts.
Here are just some ideas for getting the most out of your sticky rice:
- Layer cake dessert
- Mango rice
- Sticky rice dumplings with chicken
- Sticky rice cakes
If you’re still unsure, check out this selection of great sticky rice recipes to get your creative juices going. Imagination is your only limitation with sticky rice.
We very much hope today’s quick guide to cooking sticky rice in a rice cooker has shown you an alternative to steaming or boiling your rice.
Whether you want this dish served as a side, to accompany your mains, or as a deliciously sweet dessert, you can’t go wrong with authentic sticky rice for the whole family.
Bookmark Madiba before you head off today, and be sure to come back soon. We have lots of great content coming your way over the coming fall months, so don’t miss out!