Most rice cooker inner pots are made from aluminum with a non-stick coating called Teflon. However, this material imposes a serious health risk once burnt. Many rice cookers are now made with non-toxic materials like ceramic and stainless steel. Today, we’ll find out which rice cooker is better, with ceramic or stainless steel inner pot and why!
Why Rice Cooker Inner Pots Matter
Rice cooker inner pots are made from different materials such as aluminum, Teflon, ceramic, and stainless steel to name a few. However, the ever-dependable rice cooker can also be toxic and dangerous to our health.
The inner pots are usually coated with Teflon to avoid the rice from sticking to the bottom of the pan. Teflon can actually withstand cooking temperatures more than 500 °F and this suits rice cooking which is usually at 212 °F.
It only becomes harmful once it is burnt or scratched. Once the Teflon coating is scratched, it can release dangerous chemicals and may contaminate our food and body organs.
Teflon is made with Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) which can cause liver diseases, testicular cancer, and thyroid disorders.
Now, this is why rice cooker inner pots matter. You wouldn’t risk your family’s health just like that.
Choosing a safer and healthier inner pot alternative is easy, with the rise of new materials like ceramic and stainless steel. Find out which one suits your needs.
Ceramic Rice Cooker Inner Pots
There is a new trend in rice most rice cooker inner pots today that provides a healthier alternative to aluminum Teflon coating. Ceramic rice cooker inner pots became popular because of its natural minerals.
Ceramic does not contain the chemicals found in Teflon non-stick coating like PTFE, lead, cadmium, and PFOA. The ceramic inner pot is kiln-glazed instead of coated or dipped, like how most pots are made of.
Why Choose Rice Cooker with Ceramic Inner Pots?
There are actually two types of ceramic inner pots that you can choose from. Most of the brands out there offer sprayed ceramic-coating to other materials like stainless steel or aluminum.
However, this is not the healthiest pot to use since the coating can still easily be scratched. The healthiest ceramic inner pot is the one that is baked and glazed.
So why choose a ceramic inner pot for your rice cooker? Here are some notable features that you should know:
- Toxic and Chemical-free
- Easy to clean
- Even heat distribution
- Able to withstand high temperature (up to 2,700 °F)
True enough that ceramic rice cooker inner pots are almost ‘natural’ and safe to use, the drawbacks I see are its durability and pricing.
Some ceramic pots are prone to breakage once dropped, while high-end ceramic rice cookers are costly.
Fortunately, there are some brands that feature high-durability ceramic rice cooker inner pots.
What About Stainless Steel Rice Cooker Inner Pots?
Another non-toxic material used in most rice cooker inner pots is stainless steel. It is believed that stainless steel is almost indestructible.
In fact, stainless steel cookware is already popular because of its many advantages over other cooking materials.
There is also a huge demand for rice cooker inner pots made with stainless steel due to its durability and several more benefits.
Stainless Steel Inner Pot Advantages
Stainless steel has a lot of perks that anyone who cooks would certainly love. So if you own a rice cooker with a stainless steel inner pot, you will get the following advantages:
- Preserves Flavor
While you get all these advantages, there are also a handful of cons that stainless steel brings:
- Poor heat transfer. (Unless it’s bonded with copper or aluminum base)
Ceramic vs. Stainless Steel Rice Cooker Inner Pot
You can still get the optimum rice cooking performance whether you choose ceramic or stainless steel rice cooker.
However, if you are going to choose either of them, then consider these features carefully:
Investing in appliances with high durability features is essential since it will take you a long time before you can replace it. For this, stainless steel is known to withstand the test time and heat.
Stainless steel may undergo discoloration due to high heat cooking but it can stand breakage once dropped, unlike ceramic inner pots which are very vulnerable.
Your next top concern should be your safety. Remember, you are trying to avoid chemical contamination from non-stick coatings like the Teflon so you must greatly consider which is safer to use between ceramic and stainless steel inner pot.
According to most experts, ceramic is close to almost ‘natural’ since it is made from clay unless you buy cheaper brands which only use a ceramic coating.
Stainless steel, on the other hand, is still metal, which can get burnt in the long run and can get pitted. Tiny metal parts may contaminate your food.
Generally, ceramic inner pots are safer compared to stainless steel.
Ease of Use
If you are a beginner, then you are most probably looking for an easy to use kind of rice cooker. Ceramic inner pots are easier to use compared to stainless steel because the rice doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot.
There is a slight difference between the prices of ceramic and stainless steel inner pots. It all depends on the brand you are planning to purchase.
High-quality rice cookers come with a price so you have to carefully consider which brand suits your needs.
Which is Better and Why?
In terms of health and safety concerns, I prefer using a ceramic rice cooker inner pot for many reasons.
One of which is the all-natural quality of the pot that preserves the flavor of food you cook in it apart from rice. Next is the easy-to-use feature that anyone from beginner to expert levels can greatly enjoy.
Remember, your choice of rice cooker will highly influence the overall quality and safety of food preparation so you cannot afford to choose wrong.
Overall, both non-stick rice cooker inner pots are actually good. Each has its own qualities that you might prefer over the other.
The best way to choose is to narrow down your needs.