There are different rice recipes from all across the world. Although sticky rice isn’t that popular worldwide, it’s loved by many. In some places, sticky rice is also known as ‘Glutinous rice’ or even ‘sweet rice.’ The cooking process of sticky rice is a bit complicated than cooking standard rice. 

However, complicated wouldn’t be the right word, as the process is very easy and straight-forward. It’s just people usually don’t cook this recipe, so they lack experience and knowledge, and there are a few scopes of going wrong. 

You can cook sticky rice in rice cookers as well, and you can use any type of rice cooker for doing so. From the standard rice cooker to the advanced and programmable rice cookers, all can be used to cook delicious dishes of sticky rice. 

However, if you get the advanced rice cookers, you’ll be able to select the dedicated cooking mode created for cooking sticky rice. 

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Now, today we’ll talk about how you can cook sticky rice in rice cooker, how you can choose the right rice cooker for sticky rice, and we’ll also review the best rice cooker for sticky rice. So, let’s get started, shall we?

How to Cook Sticky Rice in a Rice Cooker?

To cook sticky rice, you’d need to gather all the necessary ingredients at first. Here are the things that you need for cooking sticky rice:

  • 2 cups of Thai sticky rice
  • 2 ½ cups of water
  • ½ teaspoon of salt

It’s very important to get the ingredients right. If there’s any disruption in the ratio of the rice and water, you’ll end up with a dish that tastes completely different from sticky rice. If you’re going to scale the dish up, that is, if you want to cook more rice at a time, you should add more water, and the ratio must be maintained. The same goes for the salt. 

Then again, we highly recommend you use the measuring cup provided by the rice cooker manufacturers to measure the ingredients. The measuring cups are mostly accurate, and they’ll allow you to add the ingredients accurately too. 

Once you’re done gathering the ingredients, you should put them in the rice cooker. Start with putting the rice and then add the water. We highly recommend you let the rice sit in the water from 40 minutes to four hours. 

As you probably know, rinsing rice is an important step in the cooking process. If the rice isn’t rinsed properly, there’s a big chance that the rice won’t become fluffy after cooking. Then again, sticky rice comes with an outer shell that’s very hard. You need to soften this layer up if you want a good result out of the rice. 

After the rice rests in the rice cooker for a definite amount of time, you should add the salt. Then, turn the rice cooker on. 

The rice cooker will take its time to cook the sticky rice. Usually, different rice cooker models take different time to cook. If you’re using a standard rice cooker, you’ll get a general texture-out of the sticky rice. Whether the rice will be cooked perfectly or not depends on the accuracy of the rice cooker. 

On the other hand, if you have a programmable rice cooker, you’ll find a dedicated mode on the front interface. Usually, programmable rice cookers are very expensive. However, the dedicated cooking modes of these rice cookers allow them to cook the special rice dishes perfectly. If you have one of these, you can enjoy a perfect dish of sticky rice with the touch of a button. 

Now that you know how to cook sticky rice in a rice cooker, it’s time for us to look into how you can choose the right rice cooker for sticky rice. But do you even need a rice cooker for cooking sticky rice?

How Much Water Do You Put in the Rice Cooker for Sticky Rice?

You need to maintain a definite ratio of water to rice if you want your sticky rice dish to be perfect. Sticky rice needs to have some extra water than the other rice dish recipes, as the water makes the rice stickier over time. 

If you’re cooking 2 cups of Thai sticky rice, you need to add 2 ½ cups of water to the rice cooker. Doing so will make sure that you have a perfect dish of sticky rice. Then again, if you increase the amount of rice you put in, you need to increase the amount of water as well. 

However, no matter how much water or rice you use, you need to maintain the ratio between rice and water. The exact ratio between water and rice should be 1:1.25. If the ratio isn’t maintained, the dish can get too hard or too sticky. 

This is Why You Need a Rice Cooker for Sticky Rice:

Sticky rice is one of the best rice recipes that you can get. If you think that you can cook sticky rice in any sort of rice cooker, you’re not wrong. However, a regular rice cooker will make the process very tough for you. 

A regular rice cooker doesn’t offer any specialized mode that can cook sticky rice. In fact, these rice cookers treat every type of rice in the same way. That’s why, if you put sticky rice in a regular rice cooker, you’ll have to be on the watch constantly. Otherwise, if you leave it up to the rice cooker completely, the chances of ending up with an undercooked or overcooked sticky rice dish are much higher. 

This is exactly why you need a rice cooker that’s suitable for cooking sticky rice. By a suitable rice cooker, I mean, you can use any that comes with a dedicated mode for cooking sticky rice. Sticky rice is a great meal, but it can get very messy if you can’t take control of the cooking process. The right rice cooker for sticky rice will grant you that, and you’ll get a dish of sticky rice cooked perfectly. 

What Should I Look for In a Rice Cooker for Sticky Rice?

There are different types of rice cookers. There are rice cookers that heat from one direction only; then, there are ones that cook from multiple directions. If you’re considering the programmability, you’ll get rice cookers that come with advanced artificial intelligence integration, and there are those with a standard control that allows cooking and warming only. 

To get the best rice cooker for sticky rice, you need to keep an eye out for the following factors:

Heating Direction:

As we’ve said before, there are some rice cookers that come with a single heating coil, and the heat the cooking pot from the bottom only. Then again, there are other rice cookers that heat the cooking pot from all directions. 

Now, you should avoid the unidirectional rice cookers. Not only do these leave an unevenly cooked dish, but they also make the bottom layer very crusty. Thus, you won’t get a perfectly cooked dish of sticky rice with these rice cookers. 

On the other hand, there are rice cookers that heat from all directions. These rice cookers, also known as jar-o-mat, provide heat to the cooking pot from all directions. Thus the rice and other meals are cooked evenly and perfectly across the rice cooker. With these, your sticky rice will taste even better. Plus, these rice cookers prevent the crust build-up in the bottom layer of the rice cooker as well. 

Cooking Capacity:

Cooking capacity is a major factor. If you get a rice cooker too small for your need, you won’t be able to cook all the required amounts of rice at a single go. On the other hand, if the rice cooker is too large for you, there will be a lot of free space. 

Then again, having a larger rice cooker has its set of drawbacks. Firstly, there will be a lot of empty space on the rice cooker, and there’s a minimum limit down to which a rice cooker can cook evenly. If the amount dips below that, the rice will get overcooked and burnt. 

Then again, the bigger rice cooker will cost you higher electricity bills, which is another problem with them. 

The perfect capacity for you would be to get a rice cooker that leaves a bit of headroom after meeting your necessities but doesn’t seem like overkill. For example, if you require 2 cups of rice daily, you’ll be good to go with a rice cooker that can cook 3 cups of rice. 


Programmability is one of the major factors to consider when you’re looking for a rice cooker for sticky rice. You can cook sticky rice in standard rice cookers, but as we’ve said before, you’ll be left with either an undercooked or an overcooked dish.

On the other hand, if you get one of the programmable rice cookers, you’ll be able to automate the cooking process by applying the suitable cooking mode. For example, if you’re cooking sticky rice, you can rest assured by activating that mode. When you do that, the rice cooker will set the cooking time and the temperature in a way that the dish is neither overcooked nor undercooked. 

Then again, most programmable rice cookers come with ‘Fuzzy Logic’ nowadays. This feature is actually an AI integration inside the rice cooker. The integration at first collects data from the cooking medium using the heat and pressure sensors. Once the information is collected, those are processed in the integrated microcomputer of the rice cooker, and that chip then sets the temperature and time parameters to perfect the cooking. This is the best way of cooking sticky rice in a rice cooker.


The durability of a rice cooker is very important. A rice cooker can be used for many years if it’s a good one. Even if you get an expensive rice cooker, every penny will be worth it if you can use it for ages. That’s why it’s very necessary to pick a durable rice cooker. Then again, if you’re going to invest, invest for the long term. Don’t cheap out and get a rice cooker that’s made of plastic. If you get a rice cooker with the solid build quality, you’ll be able to use that for years. 


The brand of the rice cooker is equally important when you’re picking one. There are a lot of brands on the market now, but not all of them are equally good. If you’re looking for the best rice cookers, you should opt for the rice cookers from Panasonic or Zojirushi. These rice cooker brands have been around for a long time, and they are genuine Japanese brands that build their rice cookers like tanks. 

Although they’re Japanese brands, they don’t make their products in Japan anymore. However, as their reputation is at stake here, they ensure the quality of the rice cookers anyway. It’s true that you need to pay a premium for getting these brands, but trust me, every penny will be worth paying. 


Now, a lot of people don’t fit their budget, and they blindly dive into a market. This is one of the worst decisions that you can take. If you don’t fix the budget, you’ll get lost among thousands of products on the market. 

Then again, if you fix your budget, it’ll be easier for you to determine which features you can afford. You don’t want to get fixated on a certain feature only to find out later that you can’t afford that. That’ll be heartbreaking. 

It doesn’t matter what your budget is; you’ll always find an amazing rice cooker for yourself. So, fix yourself a budget, and proceed!

Best Rice Cooker for Sticky Rice: Zojirushi NS-WAC18-WD:

The best rice cooker for sticky rice is definitely the Zojirushi NS-WAC18-WD 10-Cup (Uncooked) Micom Rice Cooker and Warmer. It comes from a reputed brand, offers all the features that you may require for cooking sticky rice, and it comes at a reasonable price as well! 

The Minimalist Micom Rice Cooker and Warmer

Multiple menu settings and two delay timer settings for a reasonable price; with micro computerized fuzzy logic technology, automatic keep warm, and dent resistant plastic body.

Product Link: Click Here

Frequently Asked Questions:

What’s the Most Important Factor to Consider when Buying Rice Cooker for Sticky Rice?

The major factor that you need to consider when buying a rice cooker for sticky rice is the programmability. If that rice cooker isn’t programmable, you won’t get a perfect dish of rice. If you use a standard rice cooker for cooking sticky rice, you’ll find that the dish ends up being overcooked or undercooked. 

It must be remembered that sticky rice is an extremely delicate dish, and it’ll get pretty messy if you take one wrong step. However, with the programmable rice cookers, you’ll be able to cook a perfect dish of sticky rice with the click of a single button! 

What’s Micom?

There are programmable rice cookers that come with fuzzy logic. Now, fuzzy logic is essentially an artificial intelligence that’s stored on a microcomputer. These microcomputers are called Micom in short. 

What’s the Benefit of Getting a Compact Rice Cooker?

If you get a rice cooker with a small footprint, you can get a lot of benefits from it. Here are some of them:

  • They occupy only a small space; this can save a lot of kitchen space
  • They are portable. You can carry them around easily
  • They usually come with low wattage. If you want to cook rice for one or two people, these are the best choice as these will save a lot of your electric bills. 

Is Panasonic a Good Brand?

Panasonic is considered to be one of the best rice cooker brands. The Panasonic rice cookers last for a considerable amount of time, and this earned them the reputation of being built like a tank. 


If you’re looking for the best rice cooker for sticky rice, you should get the Panasonic SR-DF181. This rice cooker not only provides all the necessary features and accessories, but it also features a great build quality, and it will last for a long time as well. So, overall, it’s a great investment. Then again, it comes at a reasonable price, which makes it even better. You won’t find a better alternative to this rice cooker for sticky rice on the market. 

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