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Best Rice Cooker For The Money  
Everything You Need to Know to Get a Great Rice Cooker at a Great Price
Top Five for the Money (Based on our Frugal5 Formula)
How do we pick these products? We spend many hours doing unbiased research to only give you the highest rated products at the best price. We first come up with a list of features, which you can see below, that we feel the majority of people will need. We then look for the highest quality products with these features and only show you the top five with the best value. Our mission is to provide you with the best five options based only on the facts. Don't see the product you were thinking about getting? Click here to calculate it's frugal score.
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Product
Aroma Simply StainlessPanasonic SR-DE103Oyama All StainlessZojirushi NS-LAC05 Micom 3-Cup Miracle Exclusives Stainless Steel
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Product Rating
 
 
 
 
 
Good
 
 
 
 
 
Amazing
 
 
 
 
 
Good
 
 
 
 
 
Amazing
 
 
 
 
 
Average
Average Price
 
 
 
 
 
Cheap ($40)
 
 
 
 
 
Average ($87)
 
 
 
 
 
Average ($75)
 
 
 
 
 
Average ($130)
 
 
 
 
 
Average ($71)
Frugal5 Score
Details
8.0
7.8
7.4
6.7
6.7
Features Needed
Auto Shut-Off
Delay Time
Durable Construction
Keep Warm Feature
Steam Tray
Features Not Needed
Brown Rice
Cake
Convection
Fuzzy Logic
Quick Cook
Slow Cook
What You Need To Know In 5 Minutes

Knowledge is power, this adage holds true in every aspect of our lives including purchasing a rice cooker. There is so much brand rivalry, that as consumers we are often flooded with various choices of rice cookers on the market. This can be a great thing when you are prepared to choose wisely. In order to do this you must know what style, size, capacity, and settings you need before purchasing your rice cooker.  Many rice cookers on the market today, are capable of doing much more than merely cooking rice. They can cook pasta, steam healthy veggies, and a few models can function as an actual slow cooker. If you plan to use your new rice cooker just for rice, then make sure you buy one accordingly. Another important fact to consider is that rice cookers basically come in two varieties, the on/off models or the fuzzy logic cookers. The difference between the two makes a vast difference in the price, so know what you need before you buy. A fuzzy logic rice cooker is a more advanced rice cooker which has settings for things such as soup, brown rice, steamer, texture of rice, and induction heating. An on/off rice cooker is a basic rice maker that literally lets you press one button to cook rice and then automatically warms or shuts down when the cycle is complete. 

Majority of rice cookers today come with a variety of features so sorting out the vital ones from the ones that are just an added touch is important, especially when your may be paying extra for a feature you may never have need of.  So, what are the must have features on a rice cooker? A keep warm function is one feature that you will come to rely on. This feature is designed to automatically cut on as soon as the process of cooking is completed.and depending on the model of rice cooker, could successfully keep your rice fresh and hot for up to 24 hours. Another feature that is a great asset on your rice cooker is a steam tray. This little tray makes it possible to not only make rice, but to steam the vegetables and meat that go along with your meal. Majority of rice cookers also come with a delay timer,which is great for those who have to work, just put the rice and water in the unit and set the timer. The rice cooker will do the rest. Of course, you also will want to make sure the unit has an automatic off feature, so that once the cooking and warming cycle is over the machine shuts down. 

Many rice machines come with extra features while these are nice, in most cases they are not needed. In fact, majority of rice cookers are capable of successfully cooking brown rice, without the added cost of a dedicate feature devoted to it. Another feature that is not need is called Fuzzy Logic, basically while this feature makes everything automatic, consumers have been using basic rice cookers with complete success for years. The slow cook and convection functions are nice features, especially if you don't already own either a convection oven or slow cooker, but they are not needed and add unnecessary cost. The cake function does produce a delicious steamed cake but majority of people don't purchase a rice cooker to make cakes. The quick cook function is only necessary if you make it a habit to wait till the last minute, to cook the rice.  This feature doesn't always produce the same fluffy textured rice as the traditional method either. 

It’s important to know what size capacity of rice cooker you need. Rice cookers are designed to make a certain amount of rice, so buying a large capacity rice cooker like a 5 cup capacity, when you only need two cups is going to cut down on the unit’s efficiency. Make a list of settings you need, because the more settings you opt for costs you dollars. If you need a rice cooker than merely cooks rice, don’t pay extra for features you will never use.   

Rice cookers that has received some of the highest reviews are Zojirushi. This company uses a system called micom + inductive heating  which has proven to be one of the most effective ways to create decadent rice. This technology also raises the price somewhat, but most consumers agree that it is worth it. Other great brands to consider are Aroma and Panasonic, both of whom make decent rice cookers that will hold up even with continued use. 

There are many rice cookers on the market that are less than a $100. These units are basic rice cookers and are perfect for some people. However many basic rice cookers on the market today are equipped with programmable features and other advanced heating and temperature controls, so it always pays to do your research..A good rule of thumb is to search for a rice cooker that has some basic rice cooking function such as warming, and a non-stick pan.  Then compare models for any and all added features you really have to have. If you do your homework you can find a durable, efficient, rice cooker that will keep you happy for years to come at a frugal price.

Features You Need
Auto Shut-Off, Delay Time, Durable Construction, Keep Warm Feature, Steam Tray
Features You Don't Need
Brown Rice, Cake, Convection, Fuzzy Logic, Quick Cook, Slow Cook
What You Should Pay
Between $40.00 - $130.00
Top Of The Line Price
Over $199.99