Which One Is Better: A Rice Cooker Or A Pressure Cooker?

Published on:
Rice cooker and pressure cooker with a text "pressure cooker vs rice cooker"

Rice is a staple food in many countries. It’s inexpensive, nutritious, and filling. Should you use a pressure cooker or a rice cooker to cook your rice? Which one makes better rice?

If you cook rice, you need a rice cooker. Rice cookers make moist, fluffy, flavorful rice every time. Pressure cookers also cook rice but have more functions than rice cookers. The quality of cooked rice from a pressure cooker is not as good as from a rice cooker. 

Aroma rice cooker in the counter with a logo of Fooducopia on the upper left side of the image.

How Do Rice Cookers Work?

Rice cookers are electric cookers designed to make cooking rice foolproof. They have a removable inner pot on top of a heating element. The appliance heats the inner pot to 212° F, boiling the rice and water. 

As the water evaporates, the rice steams inside the inner pot. The cooker maintains a constant temperature until all the water evaporates. Then, the rice cooker switches to a “Keep Warm” setting that keeps your rice warm for up to 12 hours. 

Is A Rice Cooker A Type Of Pressure Cooker?

No, a rice cooker is different from a pressure cooker. Pressure cookers heat food above 212° F. They trap steam and create pressure inside a sealed chamber. Foods cook quickly inside pressure cookers because of the high heat and pressure. 

A rice cooker is a kitchen appliance that cooks rice and other foods. Rice cookers do not cook with pressure. They heat water to boiling and cook with steam. 

White backdrop showcases a solo electric cooker.

Electric Pressure Cooker Vs. Stovetop Pressure Cooker

Electric and stovetop pressure cookers cook the same way. Electric cookers plug into an outlet. They automatically set the right amount of heat depending on your chosen cycle. Once you start them, they cook on their own. You shouldn’t open the lid until the food is cooked and the pressure is released. 

Stovetop pressure cookers cook on the stove. They can get hotter and hold more pressure than an electric cooker. You should constantly monitor the pressure of a stovetop cooker. Once the cooker reaches the correct pressure, you must adjust your stove burner so the pressure doesn’t get too high. 

Advantages Of A Rice Cooker

Whether you cook rice often or infrequently, a rice cooker is worth it

Perfect Rice Every Time

Rice cookers cook moist, fluffy rice with little supervision. Simply add your ingredients, select the right setting, and walk away. I love the convenience of setting up my rice cooker and moving on to other kitchen or household tasks. After about 45 minutes, my dinner is ready!

Check On Your Food While It Cooks

It’s easy to open the lid and check on your meat or veggies while your rice cooks. If you do it too often, you’ll lower the temperature and disrupt the cooking process. I check on my food once or twice, and it doesn’t affect cooking time or quality.

Turns Off Automatically

Once the cycle finishes, your rice cooker will switch to the “Keep Warm” setting. Your rice won’t overcook or become mushy; your cooker will keep it warm until you are ready to serve it.

Cook Other Foods With Your Rice

Most rice cookers have a removable steamer basket on top of the inner pot. I love steaming veggies or meat while my rice cooks. I have a complete meal with little effort when the cooker finishes. 

Easy To Use And Clean

Rice cookers have a simple, user-friendly display with only a few buttons. Select the cooking cycle according to the type of rice or grain you want to cook. 

The inner pot is non-stick and washes up easily. Food doesn’t stick to it no matter how long I leave it unwashed. I usually hand wash my rice cooker, but the inner pot and lid can also go in the dishwasher. 

She's wiping the outer part of the rice cooker with a logo of foodcupia in the lower right side of the image.

Disadvantages Of A Rice Cooker

Rice cookers have certain drawbacks that may make them less desirable than other kitchen appliances. 

  • They don’t have as many functions as electric pressure cookers. They also shouldn’t be used for ingredients that must be cooked above 212° F. 
  • Rice can burn if you don’t measure your ingredients correctly. 
  • The non-stick coating requires that you use plastic or wooden utensils. Metal forks and spoons will scratch the coating and make your cooker unsafe. 

Advantages of A Pressure Cooker

Pressure cookers use steam and pressure to cook foods. They cook more quickly than rice cookers. Most pressure cookers can cook rice in as little as 15 minutes. 

Intensify Flavor

Pressure cookers seal tightly and retain moisture. Foods cooked this way lose little flavor during cooking and turn out moist. 


You can cook almost anything in a pressure cooker. Veggies, roasts, soups, stews, potatoes, and boiled eggs. Electric pressure cookers also make yogurt; some new models even preserve food. 

Disadvantages of A Pressure Cooker

Though pressure cookers have many advantages, they also have disadvantages.

You Can’t Check Your Food While It Cooks

Once you start your pressure cooker, leave the lid sealed until all the pressure is released. Opening your pressure cooker while it’s cooking is dangerous. It could explode and injure you.

Electric Models Can Be Complex

Electric cookers have a big, complicated display with many buttons. They have more options than rice cookers. Some people may be overwhelmed by all the choices. 

Easy To Overcook Foods

Pressure cookers get very hot, and overcooking food is easy. I’ve always found it easy to overcook veggies in a pressure cooker. 

Can’t Leave Unattended

Never leave a stovetop pressure cooker unattended. It cooks at a high level of pressure and needs constant supervision. Electric pressure cookers are safer, but those, too, require management.  

Not Non-Stick

Pressure cookers are made from metal and are not non-stick. They are harder to clean than rice cookers because cooked food easily sticks to the pot. 

Can A Pressure Cooker Replace Your Rice Cooker?

A pressure cooker can perform more tasks than a rice cooker. However, the quality of the rice made in a rice cooker is superior. Pressure cookers tend to make gummy, sticky rice.

I would never give up my rice cooker. The rice I make in my rice cooker is much better than the rice I used to make in my pressure cooker. I wouldn’t want to replace my rice cooker with a pressure cooker.

The Bottom Line

Pressure cookers can perform more tasks than rice cookers. They can cook virtually any food, make yogurt, and preserve food. Rice cookers can cook various foods, but are made to cook rice with excellent quality. They are inexpensive and easy to store. If you cook rice, you need a rice cooker. 

Sarah Pearce Avatar


Leave a Comment