We all know that rice cooker is a multifunctional device. It does not only cook rice, you can make soup, steam vegetables, stew and many more. And as an electronic device, it is important that we, the users, know exactly how to clean a rice cooker and maintain it with care.
That being said, others find it a bit complicated to clean. Don’t fret! It may look complicated but cleaning this awesome device is easy.
Here are some practical tips on how to clean your rice cookers and preserve its good form:
1. Take Time to Read the Manual
First and foremost, review the cleaning tips of your rice cooker’s manual to check on any special instructions to better take care of it. The user manual is a booklet that contains almost all information, specifically technologically, and will help you use your product in the most effective and safest way.
Rice cooker comes in many different types and may require different types of cleaning instructions and maintenance. Today’s rice cookers have lots of advanced technology like fuzzy logic. So you must know how to care for them.
This tip is important as well for security purposes. Make sure to unplug it before washing, all components are perfectly dry before plugging, and do not expose any of the electrical parts, including the hotplate, to water.
In the case you cannot locate its manual, check the brand name and model number of your rice cooker. You can look up a copy of the manual in the Web. The manuals are mostly downloadable in the brand’s website. You need to know how to use rice cooker in the right way.
2. Always Give It a Time to Cool Down
After the rice cooker has been unplugged, give it ample time to cool down before actually cleaning it. This tip is not just for the rice cooker’s advantage, but also to make sure of your own safety. The amount of time needed for it to cool down may vary depending on the rice cooker type especially its brand and size.
This is when we go back to the first tip; check the manual for the specific amount of cooling time. Albeit very less likely to happen, if in the case the cooling time is not indicated in the manual, 30 minutes to full 1 hour will do.
3. How to Clean a Rice Cooker Carefully Washing Its Components
It is important to know and understand each parts of your rice cooker’s function and to know exactly on how to clean them. Once unplugged and cooled down, disassemble the parts that can be removed and clean it individually.
The following are the most common parts of rice cookers and some tips and instructions on how to clean them:
The inner part is mostly removable. This can be left to soak and be cleaned the same way you clean your dishes. Use water, a dishwashing soap and a nonabrasive washcloth in order not to damage the pot.
Usually, after cooking rice there are bits of burnt, you may need to use a dampened sponge or washcloth to remove it or if it really is stubborn, pour a cup of water in the pot allowing the bits of burnt rice to soften and then proceed in cleaning it.
The lid may be detachable. If this is the case, wash and clean it with soap and water just like the pot. If the lid is attached, use a sponge to clean it down its inner surface and make sure the water does not get inside the rice cooker to avoid heating problems.
Rice cookers usually come in several different accessories. For example the steamer tray, ladle, condensation collector or cup and the measuring cup. These are commonly safe to be put in the dishwasher together with your other dishes or depending on your preference, you can manually hand wash them.
Usually, a wet washcloth can easily clean the hotplate. If it has been sometime that it was not cleaned, the hotplate may have a brownish burnt color. If this happens, take into account the use of sand paper to gently scrape it and any small amounts of food particles off of the hotplate.
It is a must that its surface maintains its smoothness to allow complete contact with the inner pot and ensure its even heating for your rice to be cooked properly. The hotplate is a very important part for the rice cooker to continue its function.
Clean this as much as needed. Use a dampened cloth to carefully wipe the outside of the rice cooker for any residue or stains. If needed, the cord can be wiped by a dampened cloth as well.
4. Clean It the Same Day It was Used
To extend the life value of your rice cooker as long as possible, make it a habit to clean it every after use granting it already is cooled down. This appliance produces a fair amount of moisture and if not thoroughly cleansed, may lead to formation of mildew or mould.
To prevent mildew and mould formation, dry the rice cooker using a cloth or turn the pot upside down allowing it to naturally dry before storing it or before reuse. Before using and plugging it again, make sure all components are perfectly dry.
Below is a short video on how to wash one of the most popular rice cookers – Zojirushi NS-ZCC
5. Use the Right Cleaning Materials
Do not use a thinner, benzene, abrasive cleaners and hard brushes, bleach or anything that may cause scratches, deformation, and discoloration or damage the surface of the rice cooker.
Most importantly and last but definitely not the least, handle your rice cooker with care.
In order for a product to last long, it is a must that we address and handle it with utmost care. As long as you give your rice cooker the proper care it needs, it will pay you back by it lasting for years.