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[Updated 23 May 2021]
If there's one essential that everyone has in the kitchen, it's the rice cooker. Quick and easy to use, it's the single item we need to cook fluffy steamed rice to accompany side dishes like beef rendang, chicken curry, steamed fish and more. While this kitchen appliance is specifically designed to cook rice, the sky's the limit to your creativity and you can use it to cook many other surprising recipes! From Japanese pancakes to pasta Pomodoro, scroll down and discover other delicious treats you can make using the rice cooker.
1. KFC Chicken Rice
Starting our list of easy recipes you can make with a rice cooker is KFC Chicken Rice! When the KFC Chicken Rice recipe went viral in Japan, everyone jumped into the bandwagon and recreated it in their own kitchen. If you think it requires many steps to cook it, it's actually pretty simple! Just put rice, soy sauce and chicken stock into the rice cooker and top it off with two pieces of fried chicken. Once cooked, simply remove the bones and stir it nicely for a delicious serving of chicken rice!
It also makes a great one-pot meal if you're busy with Ramadan preparations or spending time with your kids. If you're looking for steps on how to prepare them, you can check out the recipe video above and try it at home.
You can bring the flavours of Korea to your home by making bibimbap with your rice cooker. You can find many recipes online, but Flying Chopsticks' recipe video below is one of the easiest to follow. After she stir-fries healthy toppings such as carrots, zucchini, mushroom, beef, and kimchi in the rice cooker, she assembles it beautifully like how we remembered in Korean restaurants!
Since you're creating your own version of bibimbap, don't be afraid to try different ingredients or fresh vegetables that you prefer. Instead of beef, you can use chicken or fish too. If you have leftovers, you can make the most of the ingredients in your fridge for a hearty meal while making it your own.
3. Tomato Rice
Another way to add colour to plain 'ol rice is by turning it into tomato rice! Besides adding a pop of colour into your meal, it also gives the Asian staple a sweet taste. Don't just stop there! Get creative and put in colourful toppings such as frozen sweet corn, carrots, mushrooms, meats or green peas.
The recipe video above will give you a step-by-step tutorial. While some of the ingredients are not commonly available in Southeast Asia, you can substitute it with other fresh ingredients and halal meats you can find in the supermarket near you.
4. Kimchi Rice
Another way to enjoy Korean flavours in your home is by cooking kimchi rice! While browsing Instagram, we came across this easy-to-do recipe by Kimchi Dragons. You will need a few basic ingredients such as kimchi, thinly sliced meat, spring onions, rice grains, filtered water, Japanese barbecue sauce, sesame oil, salt and toasted sesame seeds. Once you've prepped those ingredients, you can follow Kimchi Dragon's step-by-step instructions on their Instagram post, and you're going to love how it'll turn out!
5. Breakfast Omelette
Next on our list of easy recipes you can make with a rice cooker is breakfast omelette! Perfect for mornings when you're craving for something light, just crack a few eggs into the rice cooker and add any ingredients of your choice, from mushrooms to cherry tomatoes and onions. Don't forget to add a pinch of salt and pepper before serving it on a plate!
6. One-pot rice with chicken
Everyone loves a good one-pot recipe to try at home. When we came across this Instagram post by Sihan Lee, we were blown away by how easy it is to prepare one-pot rice with diced chicken and vegetables. You can start by marinating the chicken with soy sauce before chopping your favourite vegetables. After washing your rice, place it in the rice cooker before adding the ingredients and chicken stock for extra flavour. Once it's ready to serve, enjoy it together with chilli padi and soy sauce. You can read the full recipe and how to make it on Sihan Lee's Instagram post!
Almost everything is possible with a rice cooker and guess what, you can make a decent cheesecake too. The first step is to combine all the ingredients such as cream cheese, eggs, sugar, lemon juice, cake flour, and milk in a mixing bowl. After you sieve the mixture to remove the lumps, pour the batter into a bowl and bake it in the rice cooker.
If you prefer to see how it's done, the recipe video above will guide you - right up to the part on how to flip the cheesecake over and out. It'll be the perfect recipe for days when you're celebrating a birthday, anniversary or other special occasions at home.
8. Japanese Pancakes
If you've always wanted to try making Japanese pancakes, you can also prepare it in a rice cooker! All you need to do is combine the all-purpose flour, baking powder, white sugar, salt, eggs and milk in a mixing bowl before pouring the mixture into the rice cooker.
You can learn the recipe in great detail from the video above! Besides showing the number of ingredients you need to prepare this Japanese pancake at home, the directions were also pretty easy to follow. Before you know it, you'll be decorating your dessert with strawberries, butter and honey!
9. Mac and Cheese
If there's one thing we can't turn down is a bowl of yummy mac and cheese! It takes very few ingredients to create this lazy day staple and the result is promising. Just set aside the following ingredients: macaroni, milk, flour, butter, garlic powder, salt and cheese. Mix them accordingly in the rice cooker and wait for it to cook into delicious cheesy goodness.
This recipe video above by Easy Peasy Pan is also super easy to follow, and it's a popular recipe among university students who are living far away from home! If you're craving for something cheesy, be sure to try this recipe at home or create other cheesy comfort food for an amazing treat.
10. Pasta Pomodoro
If you only have 20 minutes to cook your meal, let it be pasta al pomodoro, which means 'tomato' in Italian. True to its name, this simplicity of this dish is rooted by the sweetness of juicy tomatoes. Sprinkle with a bit of cheese, top it off with basil and you have an easy meal to enjoy.
You might be used to cooking your pasta in a pot, but you can use the exact same recipe in a rice cooker. For ingredients, you need spaghetti, fresh tomatoes, onion, garlic, Parmigiano cheese, water, virgin olive oil, salt and pepper. If you follow the recipe video above by Art of Joy, you only need 20 minutes to prepare this meal. Bookmark this recipe if you have a busy day ahead of you!
11. Nasi Dagang
There's something absolutely heartwarming about cooking nasi dagang at home. If you've been wanting to try making this traditional rice dish from Kelantan, Malaysia, it's pretty easy to do!
Dapur Aisyah shares a step-by-step guide on how to make nasi dagang in a rice cooker. The primary ingredient is basmathi rice and followed by other ingredients like coconut milk, red onion, ginger, Fenugreek seeds - and that's it!
12. Pulut Kuning
Wrapping up our list of easy recipes you can make with a rice cooker is pulut kuning! The best part is, you can prepare this traditional Malay glutinous rice dish at home!
In this video, Malay Kitchen will guide you through some easy steps to cook pulut kuning in a rice cooker. Head to the supermarket and stock up on glutinous rice, turmeric powder, cooking oil, pandan leaves and you're ready to go!
If you're looking for easy recipes you can make with a your rice cooker, let these recipes take you on a culinary journey! From KFC rice to Japanese pancakes, let us know if there are more rice cooker recipes to add in this list. While you're at it, be sure to try these quick and simple microwave recipes at home!