Common Questions About Commercial Rice Cookers
How much can these industrial rice cookers hold?
The capacity of a commercial rice cooker can range from as few as 20 cups to as many as 110 cups. If your establishment is only putting out rice as the occasional side dish, a smaller unit will serve best, but if you are serving rice with virtually every meal – common in sushi, Korean barbeque, or Asian fusion restaurants – one or more larger cookers may be necessary. Most of these units come with a rice cup measure. It is important to know that rice cup measurements are not the same as traditional U.S. cups, so check your recipes and review the equipment manual before using the steamer. The rice industry standard cup holds 6 ounces, while the U.S. standard cup measures 8 ounces.
The diameter of these cookers maxes out at 24 inches with 2-inch diameter intervals between sizes, so the greater the cup capacity, the larger the diameter will typically be. Pay attention to this size if you plan on using a rice steamer on a countertop to ensure you have enough space.
Do I need an electric or gas cooker?
Most of our cookers are electric, but in some instances, a gas powered rice cooker might serve best. For example, a food truck may not have the electricity available to operate a rice cooker in addition to its other equipment. In some parts of the country, natural gas is more cost-effective than electricity – though this is rare – but gas machines might require a hood for operation, depending on local regulations. Some electric models require more power than a standard 120 volt outlet provides, so ensure your system can supply the appropriate socket and power for the machine you're purchasing.
Should I get manual or digital controls?
One-touch manual controls provide the ease of set-it-and-forget-it operation, though digital controls add the convenient ability to use your commercial rice steamer in a variety of ways. Many rice steamers include a setting that, when used with a basket, will enable you to prepare vegetables and sticky rice using steam. If your establishment needs only a machine to cook rice, the manual options will generally save a bit of money, but the more complex digital options can provide extra cooking processes.
What other features are available on industrial rice cookers?
- Automatic warming is available on some models. Once the rice is cooked, the unit will switch into a warming mode and keep the rice at just the right temperature until it is served.
- The simple operation of a trigger-lift lid provides hands-free operation when plating dishes or rolling sushi. This trigger-lift lid could also be helpful on buffet lines, where your customers may have their hands full with plates and space to set a lid may not be readily available.
- Units with a moisture collector add even more convenience by moving condensation away from the rice, keeping it fluffy. The containers can be non-stick and are removable for cleaning.
- Moisture control can help ensure your rice is never soggy or mushy. Sticky rice and rice balls cannot be shaped and eaten by hand in the traditional way if the rice is too mushy. The ability to control the moisture within the unit can also help prevent your rice and other dishes from drying out or scorching.