Non-Toxic Rice Cooker (Made USA) – For Your Rice and Grain Dishes from Around the World
Rice has been a staple for countless generations as a grain that provides nourishment for the body. Rice is an excellent source of complex carbohydrates, which acts as a source of energy for our body. Our body’s ability to convert the carbohydrates in rice into energy is why rice serves as a great addition to many meals.
Looking for a completely non-toxic rice cooker that can cook delicious rice without needing to add unhealthy additives? When looking at conventional cookware, you often find that the rice cooker is never truly non-toxic, with its material, glazes, or other additives leaching toxins into your food. Additionally, you often find that you have to add unhealthy substances to the rice itself to compensate for the rice cooker’s inability to prepare rice, like adding unhealthy cooking oils, fats, and greases. It may seem hopeless, but Miriam’s Earthen Cookware (MEC) has you covered! Making rice in MEC’s pure, primary clay pots is simple, easy, and especially healthy. This article details out the benefits of cooking rice in MEC, compares MEC to other common conventional cookware, and provides some quick tips on cooking rice and some healthy rice recipes for your everyday use.
The Awesome Benefits of Cooking Rice in MEC Non-Toxic Pots
As the article suggests, these pots are 100% non-toxic and the safest for rice cooking. Clay is naturally inert, and because MEC pots are hand-crafted with no additives, chemicals, or glazes, nothing leaches into your rice. Your rice goes into the pot pure, and it cooks and enters your stomach pure!
Cooking rice in a MEC pot is simple and easy. You only need rice and water in the right ratio (typically 1:2), and can cook on the stovetop with no more than medium heat. Once done, cleanup is just as effortless.
After naturally treating the pot with some water and flour in the initial seasoning process, the pot becomes naturally non-stick. No need for non-stick coatings or oils! With its non-stick properties, you can clean the pot with only water and a sprinkle of baking soda.
You don’t need cooking oils, greases, or cooking fats in the cooking process, either. An MEC pot is semi-porous and takes in oxygen while cooking, naturally separating the grains of rice! Conventional rice cookers and pressure cookers are usually sealed air-tight to maintain steam pressure, but because MEC has unique steam management by naturally condensing rising steam, it doesn’t require the lid to be locked tight. Cooked rice comes out moist, fluffy, and perfectly cooked.
You can also make wholesome one-pot meals with the rice! A typical rice cooker allows you to cook just rice. It does not do a very good job when trying to cook a wholesome combo meal with other ingredients: the ingredients stick, burn and cook unevenly– we’ve all heard those horror stories! As a result, most times we need to cook other ingredients separately, then add them to the rice. This is not the case with Miriam’s Earthen Cookware! MEC pure clay cookware cooks foods gently and thoroughly with unique far-infrared heat, so ingredients can be added to the pot and cooked halfway without burning or sticking, then rice can be added to cook in the same pot to complete the meal (recipes below)!
This gentle far-infrared heat cooking also means the rice tastes better and is more nutritious. Conventional cookware cooks using near-infrared heat. This is a rather damaging form of heat that could destroy delicate nutrients in the grain like some of the complex carbs, important trace minerals, and vitamins. On the contrary, MEC pots made of “pure earth” radiate far-infrared heat that cooks without damaging even delicate nutrients. (This elemental difference in heat is explained here in more detail).
In turn, this nutrient dense food is better tasting and does not require the addition of stock, broth, oil, or fats to enhance flavor!
Pros and Cons of Other Pots for Rice Preparation
Stainless Steel Cooking Pot
Rice cookers with a stainless steel inner pot are helpful for cooking rice very quickly. They are also very easy to use, with their one click button for instant pot rice. Rice stays hot with a “keep warm function”, making sure cooked rice is warm for some time after it is made. Additionally, a stainless steel rice cooker may feature a delay timer, if you want freshly cooked rice later.
Although stainless steel cookers are simple, easy, and convenient for quickly heating rice, this luxury comes at a cost. Stainless steel cooking comes with uneven heat distribution in the pot, creating potentially sticky rice or even burned rice (unless the inner pot has thicker walls to help with heat distribution). Not only does this affect rice taste, but this sticky or burned rice clings to the sides of the inner pot, making cleanup a hassle.
The airtight seal on a stainless rice cooker also causes problems, too. A stainless steel pot is sealed to keep the steam from escaping the device. However, as a result of it being sealed off from oxygen, the rice struggles to finely separate from each other. To help with rice separation, additives or oils are needed, which makes your rice far less healthy overall.
On top of that, stainless steel is a reactive metal. When heated up, the nickel and the chromium in stainless steel react with the hydrogen bonds in the rice. These reactions cause metallic compounds to leach into the rice, and these metals are toxic and accumulate in the body over time (Curious on how much leaches into your food? Try this baking salt test at home). Heavy metals are of no use in the body and are the cause of a plethora of illnesses.
Here are some scientific publications that highlight the dysfunction caused by heavy metals in the body:
Teflon-Coated Inner Cooking Pot
Because stainless steel may be difficult to clean, some inner pots have a Teflon coating that makes the pot nonstick. Teflon, or PTFE, is an artificially-made chemical that helps ensure that food does not cling to the pot. Unfortunately, the benefits of non-stick Teflon end there. When heated to high temperatures, Teflon can release toxic fumes into the air and your food. These have been proven to cause a lot of health issues, including lung damage, breast cancer, prostate cancer, liver tumors, and reduced fertility.
Here are some resources regarding the health effects of PFOA, a chemical that has been used in Teflon production:
In the past, older rice cookers with a Teflon coating were made with PFOA, a chemical that is especially dangerous to both the human body and the environment. Since these discoveries have come to the public eye, cookware companies have phased out the use of PFOA in the creation of Teflon. However, alternatives and substitutes to this chemical like GenX used these days can be just as toxic and dangerous as the original chemical!
Many rice cookers may claim to be PFOA-free or a non-Teflon rice cooker. Despite this claim, if pots have non-stick properties, they are most likely using one of these chemical substitutes instead. Be careful with non-stick coatings!
Ceramic Rice Cooker
As an alternative to Teflon non-stick coatings, ceramic rice cookers have risen in popularity as a healthier choice. A ceramic pot for cooking cups of rice is made of refined clay, and usually is used on the stovetop. Although ceramic has been considered as an alternative for non-stick rice cookers, the clay in ceramic is not pure: it is a secondary clay laden with chemicals used for refinement. A ceramic cooking bowl is more fragile and easily damageable, too. Instead of Teflon accumulating in the bloodstream and organs, the chemicals used for refinement in ceramic can accumulate instead, which defeats the purpose of being an alternative.
On the other hand, an inner pot may have a ceramic coating. This coating has non-stick properties, like Teflon. Usually, ceramic coating has an aluminum core underneath it, which helps with the heating process. Aluminum can be toxic to the body even in small amounts (read more here), which is why it is ceramic coated to ensure no aluminum leaching occurs. Despite this, any scratches to the coating may expose the aluminum, which can cause some leaching of aluminum into your rice. The ceramic coating itself is also chemically laden and can end up in your food, too.
Pressure Cookers with Inserts
Pressure cookers generally have the added benefit functioning as a multi cooker, meaning rice can be prepared with one of its settings. With that versatility, serving cups of cooked rice with vegetables, beans, or other ingredients is made possible through a pressure cooker. Pressure cookers usually have a stainless steel inner pot, aluminum, ceramic inner pot, or a Teflon-coated insert.
Unfortunately,these bear the same drawbacks discussed above. Additionally, pressure cookers are more difficult to clean, even if they have a non-stick coating, because of the many parts and rubber inserts that pressure cookers come with.
Rice Cooking Guide
How to Make Simple Rice
It is very easy to cook rice of any variety in a MEC pot. It is a quick 3 step process:
1. Add Rice: Add uncooked rice to pot and wash the rice from right in the pot, drain water.
2.Add Water: Add cooking water to specified ratio, usually 1:2, where rice is one cup and water is two.
3.Cook to Completion: Set the pot of rice over the stove at medium-low heat. Cover and cook until almost done (until most of the water is absorbed into the grains). Turn stove off while there is still a little bit of water. Your rice finish cooking with the stove off with the heat the pot has retained.
Depending on the type of rice, the rice packaging usually specifies the rice-to-water ratio needed. For best results, set aside a MEC pot for exclusively preparing rice and other grains like quinoa, cracked wheat etc. If you happen to use it for making soups and want to start reusing it for making rice, steam 2 cups of water in the pot for 10 minutes and start using for grains again.
Some Great Recipes and Dishes
Making rice in these pots are so simple and easy, you will want to make some rice with every meal.
Here are some rice recipes from around the world that you can make in your MEC pot with tasty and healthy results:
Amaranth With Rice – Served with coconut milk.
Millie Rice – A South African rice dish with corn, spices, and beans or lentils.
Mexican Rice, Indian Rice, and More – Including cilantro lime and arroz verde.
Here are some healthy dishes that can be served over rice for a delicious meal:
Delicious and Healthy Chicken Curry – A delicious Indian curry that can be served over a bed of rice.
Biryani Made with Chicken, Vegetables, and Rice – A staple rice dish of the East.
Chicken, Mushroom, and Mixed Veggie Stew – Do not be discouraged by the name, stew goes great over rice!