Rice Cooker Vs. Pressure Cooker Vs. Slow Cooker Comparison with Differences

By Consumer Advise Team
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Rice cooker, pressure cooker, and slow cooker make cooking easier and serve food on the table within minutes.

Now, the question is: which would you prefer to add to your kitchen?

You may have heard of each appliance when you want honest recommendations among Rice Cooker vs. Pressure Cooker vs. Slow Cooker. Thus picking up the most suitable cooker has become a bewildering task for you. Take an insight into this guide and know the unique features of rice, pressure, and slow cooker to enhance your cooking efficiency. 

What is a rice cooker?

As the name implies, rice cookers are excellent cooking appliances for making steamed rice. If you face trouble cooking perfectly flavored rice grains, a rice cooker will be your one-stop solution. It helps cook whole grains like oatmeal, quinoa, millet, and everyday breakfast cereals.

If you want to cook rice or other grains more quickly, this automated rice cooker would be of your help. The best rice cookers in India are energy-efficient, user-friendly, and designed to cook rice for everyday needs.

As long as people consider rice a staple diet, multifunctional rice cookers are evident. This kitchen appliance has gone through so much transformation and become more innovative than ever with passing years. Take a look at the multiple benefits and limitations of incorporating rice cookers in your kitchen.

advantages of rice cooker

The advantages of rice cooker

  • Cooking rice efficiently is a crucial factor in comparing rice cooker vs. pressure cooker vs. slow cooker. Most people remain concerned about making non-sticky rice every time they cook. But with a rice cooker, this is no longer an issue. Here, rice is being made so that every grain gets separated from one another.
  • Many times, cooking rice by traditional methods can result in overcooking. Whereas rice cooker doesn’t cause any such problem, thus you can automatically acquire uniformly cooked rice.
  • Usually, cooking rice needs practice. Using a rice cooker can get you perfectly cooked rice without worrying about getting overcooked or undercooked. Place your measured ingredients in rice cookers and let the cooker function as per the set timer.
  • Although it’s named a rice cooker, this kitchen appliance can make you relaxed by helping you to prepare your daily breakfast items like cereals, oatmeal, etc. Even if you are leading a hectic schedule, you can use a rice cooker for steaming small servings of fish, vegetables, and chicken.
  • As rice cookers are available in multiple sizes and shapes, you have the flexibility to pick out the most suitable one as per your requirements.
  • Since rice cookers have multiple programmed settings, you can adjust the temperature and time to reduce your labor effectively.
  • If you consider cleaning and maintenance, rice cookers are convenient. The steel containers inside the tabletop rice cookers can be safely cleaned in dishwashers.
  • Most brands offer to measure cups along with lines on the surface of rice cookers for helping the users to add the right amount of water and dry rice for preparing the food well.
  • Rice cookers can keep your food warm from merely 20 minutes to half a day. To avail of this fantastic benefit, you need to check its availability before buying.

Disadvantages of rice cooker

  • Do not use metal ladle on the non-stick containers inside the rice cooker, damaging the cooking surface.
  • Some introductory rice cookers may not automatically deactivate with completion until you switch off the power source. Thus, you can unnecessarily waste your electricity. 
  • Compared to using conventional cookware on the gas stove, rice cookers are in the higher price zone. Thus, you need to spend almost ₹2000 to buy a premium quality cooker. 
  • If your kitchen lacks sufficient space, a rice cooker may not be an ideal choice for you. As these cookers are larger in size, you may face a challenge in keeping them on the countertops.

Best uses of rice cookers

Buying a rice cooker will be a good decision for people who find it hard to cook rice perfectly without assistance. If you’re habituated to cooking plenty of rice every day for your family, getting a rice cooker can be helpful for the long run.

Make your cooking of rice, barley, polenta, quinoa, millet, oatmeal, and other steaming completely hassle-free, and get ready for a delicious serving. 

The best part of using this kitchen appliance is that it helps your rice keep warm for hours. Thus, there’s no need to heat it repeatedly whenever you eat. Moreover, you can spend extra quality time with your family as the rice cooker prevents you from checking the rice during preparation.

Editor’s recommendation for rice cooker

Prestige PRWO 1.8-2 700-Watts Delight Electric Rice Cooker has a capacity of 1.8 liters with two cooking pans. It requires 700 watts of power to cook up to 1 Kg of rice at a time. Having cool-touch handles and keep-warm mode, it is a safe choice for everyone.

Prestige 1.8 Litres Electric Rice Cooker (PRWO 1.8 Litres)| 2 Aluminium Cooking Pans...
  • Content: Prestige Delight Electric Rice Cooker (1.8 Open Type with Aluminium Cooking Pan-2U)
  • Net Quantity: 1 Unit.Voltage : 230 V
  • Voltage: 230V; Wattage: 700W
  • Warranty: 1 Year
  • Troubleshooting guidelines: Do not wash the main body of cooker or immerse it in water. Its electrical insulation may get damaged. Read user...

What is a pressure cooker?

A pressure cooker is sealed cookware that can boil grains and other food items in high-pressure steam. When the cooking process is over, the inner pressure is reduced to the outside atmospheric pressure to open the vessel conveniently.

There’s no denying that pressure cookers are one of the most common cooking utensils in every kitchen. As per ideal gas law (PV=nRT), the temperature of fluids increases with the rise in pressure while the volume is kept constant. In a pressure cooker, the volume is fixed by its capacity, and the pressure rises as long as water evaporates and turns to steam. This increases the boiling point of water to 121°C (instead of 100°C) and helps the food cook faster.

For a hassle-free daily cooking experience, there’s no better option than pressure cookers. In case you are in a hurry and want to cook your food items or grains within a brief time while maintaining their flavors, a pressure cooker will be ideal for you. The best pressure cookers in India are durable, easy to use, and efficient for cooking.

There’s no substitute for pressure cookers for making your everyday meal cooking super-fast. From preparing beans, rice, lentils, pasta to single-meal like vegetable stew, braised chicken – you can reduce your cooking time to half than the usual.

cooking on pressure cooker

Types of pressure cookers

Available in both stovetop and electric models, these are multifunctional cookers. Under stovetop models, the two commonly available cookers are stainless steel pressure cooker and aluminum pressure cooker. While aluminum pressure cookers cook food faster, stainless steel pressure cookers are more durable and long-lasting. Compare stainless steel and aluminum pressure cookers to learn more about them.

The modern-day electric pressure cooker will be your best solution if you want effortless cooking. You just need to plug the device into an electrical plug, and the food will get ready simply with the help of customized cooking menus. 

Also Read: Pressure Cooker vs Pan

Benefits of using a pressure cooker

  • If you want one power kitchen piece of equipment that can make your everyday cooking much more accessible, there’s no better option than a pressure cooker!
  • The significant benefit of using a pressure cooker is its offering to reduce cooking time by two-thirds. The trapped steam increases the water’s boiling point (121°C or 250°F) and quickens the cooking process. 
  • With the facility of one-pot cooking, you can prepare the whole meal with less mess and minimum spoilage. 
  • Compared to conventional cookware, the pressure cooker makes nutritious food as it seals all the nutrition. Thus, you don’t need to worry about losing vitamins and minerals from your food.
  • Get your delicious food items like soup, curry, mashed potato, chicken stew, stocks, and all other things ready in a few minutes. Using pressure cookers can prepare your food almost 70% faster than usual. 
  • Investing in high-quality pressure cookers is worthy. The only component you might have to replace is the rubber seal as it wears off over the years. Otherwise, it’s everlasting cookware that can serve you for a lifetime without the need for repurchase. 
  • Over decades, much new functionality and advancement have been assembled to the latest models of pressure cookers. So, now you can have many safety aspects to prevent unwanted accidents. 
  • When using traditional cookware, the surrounding surface area gets messy with spillage. A pressure cooker comes with a lid, thus preventing the spattering of fluids over the stove or the adjacent walls.

Limitations of pressure cookers

  • Once you cover the lid, it’s impossible to open it up until the meal is ready. Thus, there’s no chance of checking the taste or adding seasoning to achieve the desired level of correctness in your preparation. 
  • Compared to the regular cooking utensils, operating a pressure cooker is somewhat tricky, thus needs a little bit of time for mastering it.
  • A common issue every beginner faces while starting to use a pressure cooker is overcooked food. The slightest timing can make all the difference and come out with undone or overdone food.

Best uses of pressure cookers

After putting the food along with the right amount of water, seal the lid and adjust with the valve so that no moisture can come out. Once the steam starts building, the increasing pressure and temperature will prepare the food.

You can try out different yummy dishes like dried beans, grains, hard-boiled egg, curry, soup, risotto, porridge, mashed potato, vegetables, chicken broth, cheesecake, and many other food items to prevent the lengthy time of food making.

Editor’s recommendation for pressure cooker

Hawkins Contura hard-anodized aluminum pressure cooker comes with various capacities of 1.5, 2, 3, 3.5, 4, 5, 6.5 liters. Having a base with 3.25 mm thickness, it is pretty durable and long-lasting. If you are looking for a good quality pressure cooker, it can be an excellent choice.

Hawkins 3 Litre Contura Black Pressure Cooker, Hard Anodised Inner Lid Cooker, Handi...
  • Ideal for 3 or 4 Persons
  • Hard Anodised body and Stainless Steel lid
  • Black body heats faster
  • Does not react with food
  • Inside-fitting safety lid − will not open until pressure falls

What is a slow cooker?

The slow cooker cooks food items at a lower temperature and takes more cooking time than usual. Slow cookers function entirely in the opposite principle of pressure cookers.
They have a heating element installed at the bottom, and when electricity is applied, it slowly heats up the container and the food. Slow cookers also come with lids that help lock the moisture inside the pot. These lids are made of metal (mostly stainless steel), glass, or ceramic.

You can understand from its name that a slow cooker allows cooking food in a simmer setting. Thus, the low heating and slow process can make your food even unattended for a long time.

If you want power-saving cookware, the slow cooker is your best option! From 1970 till now, slow cookers have gone through many transformations. You can now choose from a wide range of available options like programmable, portable, and even manual slow cookers for regular use.

Advantages of slow cooker

Advantages of slow cooker

  • The most significant advantage of using slow cookers is its low temperature, which helps the food retain its nutrients.
  • The gradual heating in slow cookers helps the inside food moist up and increase the flavor. Recipes that need low temperature can be amazingly cooked in slow cookers with the slightest adjustments.
  • Keeping the food warm is an essential aspect of comparing rice cooker vs. pressure cooker vs. slow cooker. Even after the cooking process has been completed, slow cookers can keep the food hot if closed up.
  • The meals that you make in slow cookers are inexpensive. From rice, stew, soup – these all are food items that you can consume daily at a stretch if required. Thus, you can save a lot of money on electricity and gas as you make the whole-day meal in a single pot.
  • You don’t need to worry about overcooking with slow cookers.
  • Slow cookers don’t need much cleaning and maintenance; thus, you can save time doing essential tasks. 
  • If you want to surprise your guest at the dinner table with juicy, tenderized meat, the slow cooker will be your best solution for excelling in the art.

Drawbacks of slow cookers

  • Frozen foods are not suitable for cooking in slow cookers.
  • Prolonged power interruption might spoil the food of slow cookers if left unattended for a long time.
  • The steam condensation inside the enclosed lid results in a reverse water drip that can make your food bland flavored. 
  • Slow cookers are not appropriate for every recipe. If you want to cook a recipe that includes multiple ingredients or a dish that needs grilling before cooking will not work at all in slow cookers.

Editor’s recommendation for slow cooker

Bergner Elite Stainless Steel Electric Slow Cooker has a large capacity of 2.5 liters and runs only on 160 watts of power. You can adjust the heat generation with three modes- low, high and warm suitable for any particular recipe.

Hawkins 3 Litre Contura Black Pressure Cooker, Hard Anodised Inner Lid Cooker, Handi...
  • Ideal for 3 or 4 Persons
  • Hard Anodised body and Stainless Steel lid
  • Black body heats faster
  • Does not react with food
  • Inside-fitting safety lid − will not open until pressure falls
Rice cooker vs pressure cooker vs slow cooker

Comparison of Rice Cooker vs. Pressure cooker vs. Slow cooker

Point Of DifferenceRice CookerPressure CookerSlow Cooker
Energy SourceElectricityLPG/PNG or electricityElectricity
ApplicationRice cookers are used for cooking rice faster than the traditional method with handi.Pressure cookers are used for cooking food items (meat, rice, vegetable) faster.Slow cookers are used for slow cooking recipes like stew, soup, etc.
SafetyRice cookers are safe to use with automatic shut-off.Pressure cookers are safe to cook on a pressure cooker, but users should take care from steam.Slow cookers are the safest appliance to use as they do not produce superheated steam.
Cleaning and MaintenanceEasy to clean and maintain.Takes more effort to clean compared to rice cookers.It is also easy to clean and maintain.
CostRice cookers are costlier than pressure cookers and cheaper than most slow cookers.(Price Range: ₹700-₹4000)Stainless steel pressure cookers are the cheapest kitchen appliances compared to rice and slow cookers. But electric pressure cookers are the costliest. (Price Range: ₹300-₹8000)Slow cookers are costlier than both pressure cookers and rice cookers.
(Price Range: ₹2000-₹8000)
Ease of UseIt is the most easy-to-use cooker compared to others.It is convenient to use while you are in a hurry. Slow cookers are easier to use than pressure cookers.
Power RequirementRice cookers consume moderate electricity in the range of 500w to 800w.Metallic pressure cookers do not need electricity to run. However, the electric pressure cooker consumes the highest electricity (more than 1000w) compared to the rice cooker and slow cooker.The power consumption rate of slow cookers is the lowest (100w-400w).

Differences of Rice Cooker, Slow Cooker and Pressure Cooker  

Rice, slow, and pressure cooker have some crucial differences based on their working methods, application, maintenance, price, convenience, safety, power requirement, etc. You should be aware of them before selecting the ideal cooker for your kitchen.

1. operational Differences

Different stages through which the rice gets cooked are- rinsing in water, boiling, steaming, and warming up. In rice cookers, the heating element transfers the heat to the cooking pan for warming up the rice and water. The cooking pan transfers the heat faster because of highly conductive metals such as copper or aluminum.

A pressure cooker works slightly differently than a rice cooker. It comes with a safety valve that keeps the internal pressure in check. As soon as the cooker’s temperature goes up, superheated steam is produced by the inside liquid, and it gradually increases the pressure. It stimulates the fast cooking of the food. The fluid and moisture are also absorbed into the food rapidly, which expedites the cooking process and makes solid food items like meat softer. 

Slow cookers are a very convenient device for cooking meals in an automatically set timer, where the time required for cooking the meal ranges from 2 hours to 8 hours. The lid of the slow cookers is used to cover the pot and seal it, which promotes even distribution of heat. With programmable slow cookers, you can set the temperature at high or low, set a timer for cooking, and get your meal ready accordingly. This is why slow cookers are better for making one-pot meals than pressure cookers or rice cookers.

2. Different Applications

As the name suggests, rice cookers are made to cook rice more hassle-free than traditional methods. Beyond what the name suggests, rice cookers are also used to prepare hot cereals, cooking vegetables, chicken breast, fish fillets, and even shrimp. Rice cookers can also be used for steaming purposes. You can also use a rice cooker efficiently for making stews, soups, or beans by adding a sufficient quantity of water and the required spices and ingredients. 

Pressure cookers are perfect for fast cooking. The multiple purposes that a pressure cooker serves include boiling food, braising them, and even simmering it. Some of the dishes that can be conveniently cooked using pressure cookers include stews and soups. You can also use a pressure cooker to boil vegetables like carrots, beans, and beetroots. The best electric pressure cookers in India come with an automated option for cooking various dishes.

Although we generally use a slow cooker for cooking rice or one-pot meals, there are many other purposes that a slow cooker serves, which include boiling, baking, and even frying. Thus, slow cookers can also be used to make stews and soups, but their applications are limited compared to a pressure cooker.

3. Which cooker is safest to use?

Rice cookers are electric kitchen appliances for which the manufacturers include automatic cut-off systems. To use the rice cookers safely, read the user manual and follow the instructions given. The area where you are using the rice cooker must be free from any hindrance.

Pressure cookers are among the most convenient kitchen appliances, but you should be careful when using them. The non-electric pressure cookers have stainless steel or aluminum bodies that heat up when cooking. So, be cautious and do not touch it with bare hands. On the other hand, electric pressure cookers are safer to use, like rice cookers.

Slow cookers are safe to use and can be left unattended for a couple of hours. However, one must make sure that they have set the correct temperature timer and filled up the required ingredients to cook properly.

4. Cleaning and Maintenance requirements

Firstly, following the instructions given in the user manual is essential for the daily cleaning of a rice cooker. Make sure to turn off the power and unplug it before the process. Then use a wet cloth soaked with soap solution to clean the rice cooker body. Clean the interiors after every use. You can wash the cooking pot like any other cookware.

For proper cleaning of the pressure cooker, detach all the parts of the pressure cooker: the lid, gasket, pot, and valve, and then wash them thoroughly with a detergent. But remember not to use any harsh chemicals on the gasket.

If the food is stuck on the pressure cooker’s base, you can soak it with warm water and then wash it with a dishwasher detergent. Finally, completely dry the different parts of the pressure cooker before reassembling it. Pressure cookers need more maintenance compared to rice cookers or slow cookers.

Before cleaning a slow cooker, make sure to unplug the slow cooker and remove the inner bowl. It can be washed with soap water or dishwasher detergent. The exterior of the slow cooker must be cleaned with a damp cloth with the soap solution. Drying the interior bowl before attaching it to the body is recommended.

5. pressure cooker vs. rice cooker vs. slow cooker: Cost

Rice Cooker: The cost of a rice cooker ranges from a minimum of ₹700 to over ₹4000. 

Pressure Cooker: The cost of a pressure cooker ranges from a minimum of ₹300 to ₹8000. 

Slow Cooker: The cost of a slow cooker is around ₹2000 to ₹8000. 

Therefore, if you are looking for a budget-friendly cooker, choose a pressure cooker made of stainless steel. Otherwise, rice cookers are good options as slow cookers are the costliest in the Indian market.

6. Ease Of Use

A rice cooker is straightforward to understand and use. Although rice cookers have several variations, the cooking procedure is similar. Following the instructions in the manual will help you have a mess-free cooking experience.

Pressure cookers are easy to use but not as easy as rice cookers or slow cookers. However, with just a little attention, you will be able to cook any dish super quickly and without any difficulties.

Slow cookers promote one of the most convenient forms of cooking as you can adjust the temperature and timer and then sit back and relax until the food is cooked. Unlike a rice cooker or pressure cooker, using a slow cooker is super easy and does not require your constant attention.

7. Power Requirement

Rice Cooker: In general, a 1.8L rice cooker requires 550 watts of power for cooking. The average range is 500-800 watts.

Pressure Cooker: The stainless steel pressure cookers are not powered by electricity. However, a 3L electric pressure cooker consumes an average of 1000 watts of energy.

Slow Cooker: Slow cooker use a little electricity to run. A typical 3.5L slow cooker consumes around 200 watts of power. The average power usage is around 100-400 watts.

Therefore, we can conclude that pressure cookers made of stainless steel are most preferable as they do not need electricity to run. Slow cookers are also a reasonable option with low power consumption in terms of power requirement.

So, Pressure Cooker, Rice Cooker, or Slow Cooker – Which is Better for You?

Now, the most confusing thing that comes to your mind is choosing between Rice Cooker Vs. Pressure Cooker vs. Slow cooker. Well, to make your task easier, here’s the solution.

Pressure cookers are the most suitable option compared to rice cookers or slow cookers. This is because they have the most versatile uses- what you can cook in a pressure cooker can also be cooked in the rice cooker or slow cooker. On the other hand, rice cookers specialize more in cooking rice, and slow cookers are perfect for making stews.

Look into your food habits, cooking time, convenience, kitchen space, flexibility, and other vital factors that can help you get an exceptional meal every time you want. When you initiate making your daily rice preparation in a rice cooker, the slow cooker will help you get your perfect side dish done. So, choose the ideal cooker wisely and make your kitchen time fully functional.

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Last update on 2024-07-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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