Rice cookers are a must-have tool for restaurants that serve Asian cuisine, burrito joints, and cafeterias. If your restaurant has rice – or any other type of grain – on the menu, a commercial rice cooker will save you time.
Making the decision to buy a rice cooker is easy, but finding the right model can be a challenge. We're going to share some of our top-rated rice cookers, but first, let’s talk about how these machines work.
How Do Rice Cookers Work?
Rice cookers are designed to cook rice to fluffy perfection. They save you the time and hassle of having to babysit pots of rice. Busy staff can easily overlook pots of rice, which can lead to burning or an overly dry product.
Rice cookers eliminate this issue by cooking the rice for just the right amount of time and then shut it off automatically.
But how do they work? The best rice cookers have temperature sensors that can sense when the water has been fully absorbed by the rice. The unit then powers down and switches to its warming function.
The thermostat sensor is usually located at the bottom of the bowl. While the rice is cooking, the water is boiling and being absorbed by the rice. The temperature where the sensor is located remains steady. Once the water is absorbed, the temperature quickly starts rising at the bottom, and this temperature bump triggers the automatic shutdown.
How long do rice cookers take? Cooking large quantities of rice can take anywhere from 25 to 35 minutes.
Commercial rice cookers can save you time because you don’t have to carefully watch a pot of cooking rice. Because they shut down automatically when the rice is cooked, staff can focus on more important tasks while the cooker keeps the rice warm for service.
Commercial Rice Cookers List
Now that you understand how rice cookers work, you may be wondering which model you should choose for your commercial kitchen. We’re going to share six of our favorite models, which can accommodate restaurants of all sizes.
The Winco RC-P300 is a 30-cup electric rice cooker that produces 60 cups of cooked rice. When the rice is done cooking, the machine shuts off automatically, which saves your staff time. The internal thermostat senses when the water has evaporated and will shut itself off automatically.
There’s also a warming function to keep the rice hot during service.
This cooker has a special inner pot that seals in moisture for better results. The non-stick surface makes clean-up a breeze, and the electric cord is removable for easy side-table use. With a weight of just over 17 pounds, this model is light enough for staff to move easily.
The RC-P300 comes with a cover, measuring cup, inner pot, and serving paddle. It’s a great option for restaurants that serve high volumes of grains.
The Adcraft RC-E30 is also a 30-cup rice cooker, but this model is slightly heavier at 19 pounds. Offering heavy-duty commercial quality, the RC-E30 comes with a stainless steel lid and aluminum interior. The aluminum insert has clear, easy-to-read graduations for cooking.
The keep-warm feature ensures that your rice stays warm during service. Adcraft includes a clear plastic measuring cup and a large plastic fork.
If your restaurant doesn’t need a large rice cooker, the Winco SR-42HZP-D is a great option. This is a 23-cup cooker that produces up to 37 cups of cooked rice.
Like other Winco cookers, this model has an automatic shutoff feature to prevent burning. An internal sensor senses when the water has evaporated and automatically switches over its warming mode. This eliminates the need for monitoring, which saves staff time, especially during busy hours.
The SR-42HZP will keep your rice warm for up to two hours. A built-in thermal safety fuse helps prevent overheating.
The SR-42HZP has a coated steel cabinet and a stainless steel lid for durability. The removable interior pot is made from non-stick aluminum alloy.
Featuring a stainless steel body and satin finish, the Winco RC-S300 is a 30-cup rice cooker that offers up to six hours of heat retention. This model is ETL certified and ETL listed for sanitation.
The RC-S300 can cook large quantities of rice quickly and easily. The warming feature keeps your grains warm during service.
The interior pot is made of stainless steel for reliability and performance. The inner pot is non-stick, and Winco includes a serving paddle that won’t damage the pot’s coating. A measuring cup is also included for easy measuring and portioning.
If your restaurant serves high volumes of rice and other grains, the Winco RW-S450 may be a great option for you. This model can handle up to 100 cups of uncooked rice, and it will keep your rice warm for up to 24 hours.
The pot’s tight seal keeps moisture inside to prevent your rice from drying out. The non-stick inner pot is also easy to keep clean, so your staff saves time in the kitchen.
The heavy-duty stainless steel construction will provide years of use, and the energy-efficient heat absorption function saves on operational costs.
A satin finish gives this cooker a nice look that complements any kitchen. The inner pot is removable for easy cleaning, and it has graduation lines for easy measuring.
The Thunder Group SEJ50000 is an efficient commercial rice cooker that offers easy, one-touch operation. The cooker is designed to regulate the heating time and temperature to cook rice to sheer perfection.
Once the rice is done cooking, the unit automatically switches over to warming mode.
The built-in side handles make it easy to carry, and the durable legs provide added stability. This model has a stainless steel lid and a heavy-duty aluminum cook pot. Included is a 5-cup measuring cup as well as a special rice spatula.
The Final Word
Rice cookers are a great addition to any commercial kitchen that serves grains. These six models are some of the best ones on the commercial market. Weigh the pros and cons of each one to find the best model for your establishment.