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How long to Cook Rice in a Microwave?

Microwave rice is a quick way to prepare the dish for your favorite recipes, but this method isn’t familiar to most people. But the good thing is you can quickly grab its steps if you know the basics to follow and master the cooking time. Learning how to cook rice in a microwave is a handy technique every food enthusiast must understand, and if you identify as one, you’re in the right place.

How long to Cook Rice in a Microwave

Rice Nutrition Facts

How long to Cook Rice in a Microwave

Why Cook Rice in a Microwave?

It sounds laughable to consider cooking rice in a microwave, especially if you already own an instant pot or slow cooker. But the method comes with its advantages, some of which you’ll discover today;

Faster- Cooking rice on the stovetop or rice cooker takes time, and the former leaves quite a mess. The microwave method, however, is the opposite.

Less Chance of Burning- Have you had issues with sticky crockpot or burnt stovetop rice recipes? Then, consider that problem over with the microwave method!

Budget-Friendly Style- If you own a microwave oven, then cooking rice will become just as simple as doing it in any sophisticated appliance. And the result will come out just as good.

Great for Small Batches- Do you need a small amount of rice for a recipe but don’t want to waste resources? Then, the microwave is an excellent way to prepare it with less power and materials.

Works for Many Rice Types- You can use this procedure for numerous types of rice and still get fantastic results. It’ll work for glutinous white rice, but also cook basmati, jasmine, or brown rice.

Steps for Microwave Rice

Before focusing on the cooking time, it’s important to note the necessary procedures for making rice in a microwave.

Rinse the Rice

You’ll need to remove excess starch from the rice before cooking, which contributes to a gummy, sticky texture. And one ideal way to achieve it is with a rice water rinse. Cover the rice in a bowl with cold water and swish so the excess starch and dirt come off. Then, drain the rice, and repeat the process two to three more times until the water becomes clear.

If you’re cooking brown rice, you won’t have to worry about excess starch and only need one rinse. As for sticky glutinous rice, consider soaking it in water for a minimum of 15 minutes before rinsing and cooking.


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Water to Rice Ratio

Like every other method, you also have to get the ideal water amount for microwave rice. Balancing the two elements is what guarantees you a fluffy, non-sticky texture after cooking. And you can alternate with broth for a tastier result if the water feels too bland. For sticky, basmati, jasmine, and microwave rice, follow these instructions;

1½ cups of water per cup of rice when cooking two cups, and;

1¼ cups of water per cup of rice when cooking more than two cups.

But brown rice requires extra cooking time, thus more water, and will need 3½ of water per cup for every 1½ cups of rice.

Choosing the Cooking Container

A microwaveable bowl is essential for this cooking method, and it helps to consider one with enough space for the rice as it rises. It’s also helpful to use a microwave rice steamer, which is considered a straightforward container for this purpose. It comes with a vented lid, so steam circulates in the container- a necessary process when cooking microwave rice.

But if you’re using a regular microwaveable bowl, ensure to seal it with ¾ plastic wrap or a loose plate. The reason is that steam builds up in the container as the rice cooks, and if the lid is tight, the pressure will cause it to blow off.

Cooking Time for Microwave Rice

The doneness duration for rice with this method depends on the amount you’re cooking and the microwave’s efficiency. Once the rice is washed and prepped in the bowl, you’ll have to cook it at HIGH power for the first 10 minutes, followed by MEDIUM powder for the remaining time. And the rice shouldn’t be stirred throughout the cooking process. The total duration can be determined following the table below;

White, Jasmine, and Basmati Rice

  • One cup – 10 minutes
  • Two cups – 12 minutes
  • Three cups – 14 minutes

Brown Rice

  • 1 ½ cups – 25 minutes
  • Two cups – 30 minutes

Once the rice is ready, leave it covered for three minutes so the texture is enhanced. Also, if you’re using microwave rice, follow the tips on the package for better results.

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Microwave-Cooked Rice (6 Servings)

  • Author: Bobby


  • Two cups of white rice
  • Three cups broth


  1. Pour the rice into a microwaveable bowl, and add enough water to cover it. Then, swish the rice around to wash off the excess starch and dirt, and drain through a sieve. Repeat the process three more times, until the water is barely cloudy.
  2. Return the rinsed rice into the microwaveable bowl, and add the broth, then cover with ¾ plastic film and place it in the microwave.
  3. Cook at 100% power for 10 minutes, then reduce the power to 50% and cook for two more minutes.
  4. When the time is up, take the bowl out and let it sit for three minutes before uncovering. Then, fluff the cooked rice with a fork and serve as desired.

More tips can be followed here.

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