A side of rice with leftover roasted chicken or pork is one of the easiest ways to prepare a hearty meal. Not only is it healthy and tasty, but preparing rice is made so much easier with appliances like a rice cooker. However, a gentle mistake might lead to your rice ending up mushy.
This can be blamed on the incorrect proportion of water and rice. Anything more or less can lead to mushy and undercooked rice. But you can avoid that by paying attention to the little details.
In the following article, you will know why you end up cooking soggy rice, how to deal with it, and lots more. Read along so that you never have to deal with mushy rice again.
Why is your rice cooker making mushy rice?
Generally, when you cook rice, you must be careful about the proportion of water. If you use a lot of water, primarily if you use a rice cooker, you’ll wind up with sticky rice for dinner.
It is because a rice cooker loses less water to evaporate than a stove. Steam is produced to cook the rice, but it does not technically leave.
Another thing to consider if your cooker makes mushy rice is to know the starch content in your rice. There are various kinds of rice, and each one has a distinct percentage of scratch.
When you put rice in hot water, it releases starch. Starch and liquid molecules rush during this time, and water seeps inside the granules easily.
Rice grains are also pushed together because starch absorbs water. Stickiness develops, and rice lumps appear. As a result, you get mushy rice.
Thus, the rice will likely get mushier if the starch content is higher.
These days fitness freaks and conscious, healthy diet people are more inclined to purchase brown rice. This is because brown rice is loaded with dietary fiber. It also assists in reducing heart problems as it is enriched with magnesium.
Whereas when it comes to white rice, the majority of the nutrients are removed during the manufacturing process.
This means you should also choose brown rice over white rice. Not just for this factor but also if you don’t want soggy and sticky rice because a single cup of brown rice contains 40g of scratch. And white rice has 44g of scratch.
Thus, the proportion of water, starch, and cooking directions play an essential role.
But how to prevent soggy and sticky rice? Well, for that, read the next section now.
How to cook perfect rice in a cooker?
Now that you know what the basic problem is and why you end up cooking mushy rice is. It’s time to learn how to get rid of it.
We have divided this section before and after the phase. Things which you have to do prior in order to get perfect rice. Second, in case you end up cooking mushy rice, what tricks you can follow to dry the rice.
1. Use water in the right amount.
If you use water in the correct quantity, you will always have a nicely cooked separate grain of rice on your plate.
While preparing rice, always make sure to read the directions on the label. Use water according to that. If you lost the cover, then you can use the hit and trial method to achieve the right quantity.
Generally, short-grain rice will need 200ml of water for every 200g of rice. And, long grain rice will need 300ml of water for every 185g of rice.
If you eat brown rice, then take 475ml of water for every 190g of rice. This is because brown rice takes longer to cook.
2. Clean rice thoroughly with water
It is crucial to clean rice with water before cooking because it helps to get rid of excess starch.
Have you noticed cloudy white water when you wash rice? Well, that’s nothing but starch. Therefore, make sure to wash the rice properly.
TIP: Fill rice and then water while cleaning, and make sure not to do it the other way around.
Always clean rice 3,4 times until you stop seeing cloudy white water.
3. Remove excess water
If you end up cooking mushy and watery rice by mistake, then follow these steps.
- Take out the lid and tilt the cooker gently so that water drains out quickly.
- Place the rice in a pot and heat it on a low flame on the stove. In this way, the remaining surplus water will evaporate at low heat.
- After drying out, make sure to let the rice rest. Then you can take off from the heating stove.
Now, you can enjoy your rice with curry or anything you prefer.
Use an oven to dry
This step is also similar to the above one. But the only difference is that we will be using the oven.
So, let’s learn how to do this hack.
The first step is similar. You have to get rid of excess water from the cooker. Then you have to lay parchment paper on the baking sheet and place rice on it.
Now, you have to keep the sheet in the oven at low heat. Keep in mind to spin the rice in between.
You have to check whether rice is completely dried out or not constantly. If it is dried, simply switch off the heat and let it be inside the oven for a few more minutes.
After that, you can enjoy your meal.
Try refrigerator method
In this trick, we will use the fridge to remove excess moisture from the rice. Sounds unusual, right? Well, it is possible. Let’s see how.
Once your rice is cooked, you have to drain water, place parchment paper on a baking sheet, and transfer the whole rice to the tray.
Then evenly distribute the rice and put the tray inside the fridge. You must check the state of your rice regularly.
The water amount in your rice will determine how quickly it dries, but it should take about 20-30 minutes on average.
Once the rice is dried out, you have to move the sheet to the microwave and heat it for a few moments. And your not-so-mushy rice is ready.
Even if you cooked soggy rice and didn’t want to dry it, you can still fix the problem. Wondering, how? Well, for that, read the next section.
A piece of bread can solve your mess.
Yes, you read it right. You can fix the sticky and soggy rice problems with the help of bread.
You have to put a slice of bread in the pot, cover it, and heat it on a low flame. The bread will soak all the excess moisture from the rice. And, you can have your meal.
You can prepare many dishes if you don’t want to dry your soggy rice. Scroll down to know more.
How to fix the mushy rice problem?
What to do if you cooked a large batch of mushy rice? Well, you can prepare various dishes out of it.
Try rice pudding
You can turn mushy rice into miraculous rice pudding. With the help of eggs, rice, milk, vanilla, and other ingredients, you can make dessert at home.
Make your soggy rice even more sticky and cook porridge out of it. Generally, it is made from oats, but you can always do some experiments when it comes to cooking, right?
I am sure you will love porridge made from rice. Add honey, fruits, nuts, whatever you like, and enjoy your breakfast.
Sticky rice is ideal for preparing rice cakes. So, if your rice turns out to be soggy and sticky, you can also make a rice cake out of it.
Add some salt and pepper and any veggies you prefer, then add rice and prepare patties. Keep it ½ thick.
You can then put some oil on the pan and cook the patties for a few minutes on each side, and your delicious rice cake is ready.
Follow the same recipe that you generally use when preparing a frittata. Additionally, you have to add rice; it will add fluffiness.
Don’t worry. It won’t change any taste. Before baking, stir the rice into the egg to properly distribute it.
Make soup or stir fry rice.
You can always go for rice-based soupy dishes with vegetable stock, or if the rice is just sticky and not so mushy, you can always stir fry some veggies, add some sauce and eggs, and prepare egg stir fry rice.
If you accidentally cook uncooked rice, then a solution is waiting for you in the next section.
How to fix undercooked rice?
Generally, undercooked rice is a result of fast cooking. When you turn on your flame to a high temperature to make rice fast, the rice becomes hard and crunchy. This makes your chewing process difficult.
Well, when you cook the rice on a high flame, the water starts evaporating rapidly, and the rice does not get enough time to absorb moisture.
Moreover, some people may also wind up cooking undercooked rice if they don’t add enough water at the beginning or when they remove the cover too soon.
So, to clear up this problem, you can follow the following steps.
Use a half cup of water and keep it on a low simmer. Please don’t make a mistake and raise the flame.
Make sure the lid is tight because if it isn’t, then steam will come out of the cooker, and the rice will become hard and undercooked.
Maintain the lid’s position. There will be no peeking. All the steam will escape if you do, and you’ll wind up with undercooked rice once again.
Remember, if you are making brown rice, then you need to simmer for some more time.
TIP: To seal the pan and prevent steam from escaping, insert a sheet of paper kitchen towel between it and the lid.
How do you make rice not sticky in a rice cooker?
To prevent your rice from sticking to the rice cooker, you must rinse it under running water before cooking. This process will remove any excess starch. Additionally, you must let the rice rest after cooking for 10-15 minutes with the lid on. This will give your rice the correct texture and consistency.
How much water do you put in a rice cooker for white rice?
If you are cooking white rice in a rice cooker, you must maintain the water and rice proportion to 2:1. In case you want mushy rice, you can increase the proportion of water. On the other hand, you can decrease the water proportion to get firm rice.
What happens if we add more water to the rice?
Adding more water to the rice can make them mushy and overcooked. Instead, you must maintain the correct proportion to get a perfect rice bowl.
Well, that’s a wrap!
Generally, many people cook soggy, mushy rice because they add a lot of water. But sometimes starch content of the rice also affects the cooking style. Therefore, you must read the label and add water according to it.
Moreover, make sure to always clean rice well in order to remove extra starch. In this way, you can cook nice separate rice.
If you end up cooking soggy rice, then you can use an oven to get rid of extra moisture. If you know any other hacks, share them with us. Till then, happy cooking!
Milburn Adler is a food enthusiast and connoisseur of wine. His area of expertise is food fusions and gourmet foods. He lives to experiment with new recipes every day and spends most of his day looking for fresh and exotic fruits and vegetables.