1. Food
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Cooking Rice

Tips on cooking rice that is fluffy and won't stick to the bottom of the pan

By

Like hardboiling eggs, cooking rice is one of the those things that seems like it should be easy but can turn out to be quite difficult. Here are tips to help your rice turn out perfectly every time.

Need more help? Here are photo instructions showing how to cook rice.

1. Use Long Grain Rice When Cooking Chinese Food

Medium grain rice is also acceptable, but the Chinese use short grain rice mainly for dishes such as congee.

2. Rinse the Rice

brand of rice you are using - but rinsing does remove any starch and excess residue that can cause the rice to turn out sticky or “gummy.” Also, I do find rinsing 2 or 3 times improves the flavor.

3. Cook the rice in a pot with a heavy bottom.

This will give the rice a thinner crust – copper is an excellent choice.

4. Don't use salt or butter when cooking plain rice

Adding seasonings to rice during cooking kills its natural sweet flavor.

5. Don't use Stale Rice

If your rice is taking longer than usual to cook, you may want to check how long it has been sitting in the cupboard. Older rice can lose some of its moisture, requiring more water and a longer cooking time than fresh rice.

6. On Nights When You're in a Rush, Soak the rice in cold water

Besides speeding up the cooking time, this will give the rice a softer, fluffier texture, so if you prefer rice with a firmer texture, save this for nights when you're in a real hurry.

7. Save Leftover Cooked Rice to Make Fried Rice

Leftover rice is perfect for making fried rice. Just be sure to follow food safety instructions for storing cooked rice – cool down and refrigerate the rice as quickly as possible, within a maximum of 1 1/2 hours (if necessary, divide the rice into separate dishes to help cool down more quickly).

8. Don't use Instant or Precooked Rice

Large bags of long grain white rice are available in Asian markets and most supermarkets - Dragon King is a good brand.

9. Experiment With Cooking Scented Rice

For a bit of variety, try one of the scented rices such as jasmine or basmati. Just remember that the amount of water required and the cooking time will be different than for other types of long grain white rice.

More... Have trouble with fried rice sticking to the wok or frying pan when you cook it? Check out the discussion on our forum.

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.