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Best Rice

Updated June 2022
Bottom line
Pros
Cons
Best of the Best
RiceSelect Royal Blend Texmati White, Brown, Wild, and Red Rice
RiceSelect
Royal Blend Texmati White, Brown, Wild, and Red Rice
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Most Versatile
Bottom Line

From adding a nutritious side to your favorite meal to creating gourmet rice dishes, chances are this rice blend will become your go-to favorite.

Pros

Offers a unique blend that includes white, red, brown, and wild rice that adds distinctive flavor and texture to meals and recipes. Great served as a side with fish or poultry. Comes in a handy BPA-free storage jar that locks in freshness.

Cons

Price per pound is higher than many competitors.

Best Bang for the Buck
Botan Musenmai Calrose Rice
Botan
Musenmai Calrose Rice
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Simple Yet Solid
Bottom Line

Not only will you love how easy it is to make sushi with this moderately sticky option, but you'll also appreciate that it works well for numerous other recipes.

Pros

A good choice for making sushi, as the premium grains are fairly short and stick together when cooked to soft consistency. Suitable for casseroles, soups, and more. Rinsing after cooking makes it great as a side dish. Nice, mild flavor.

Cons

Reports of quality control issues that include bags that were leaking, ripped, or completely open upon arrival.

Thousand Lakes Minnesota Grown Wild Rice
Thousand Lakes
Minnesota Grown Wild Rice
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Rich in Fiber
Bottom Line

A hearty wild variety that's delicious and nutritious.

Pros

Delicious wild variety that provides fiber and protein thanks to being whole-grain. Flavor is rich and nutty and pairs nicely with many main courses. Bag is resealable to maintain freshness.

Cons

Takes longer to cook than other types.

Pride Of India Extra Long Indian Golden Basmati Rice
Pride Of India
Extra Long Indian Golden Basmati Rice
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Convenient Packaging
Bottom Line

Grown in India, these high-fiber grains won't stick together, but can take a while to prepare.

Pros

Features a low glycemic index thanks to its high fiber content. Fragrant and fluffy when cooked, and grains do not stick to each other. Grown organically and aged for flavor.

Cons

Preparations take longer as you need to soak and rinse.

Molinella Arborio Rice
Molinella
Arborio Rice
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Best for European Cuisines
Bottom Line

Traditional Italian short-grain variety perfect for traditional dishes.

Pros

Best type for risottos, flan, and puddings. From Molinella in the Po Valley of northern Italy, where the soil is naturally rich in minerals.

Cons

Small bag for the price.

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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. About BestReviews  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.About BestReviews 
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Buying guide for Best rice

It is hard to overstate the importance of rice as a food source. First domesticated in China over 7,000 years ago, over half the world’s population now depends on rice as an integral part of their diet.

From sushi and stir fry to side dishes and a wide variety of processed foods, the rice consumed by billions of people across the globe on a daily basis has a caloric and nutritional footprint that cannot be ignored. Not bad for a grass seed that is difficult to grow, harvest, process, and store!

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While there are no exact figures, it is estimated that there are over 40,000 varieties of rice in the world.

Key considerations

Grain size

Long grain rice: Long grain rice has longer kernels and tends to cook up light and fluffy.

Medium grain rice: The kernels of this rice are shorter and tend to stick together more than long grain rice.

Short grain rice: Short grains usually cook up stickier than other rice sizes, so they're ideal for making sushi.

Types of rice

In addition to grain size, you will need to decide which type of rice you desire. Different rice types have unique textures, flavors, and colors. In turn, this can affect how you use them. Here are some of the most common rice types.

Basmati: With a nutty flavor, basmati is a long-grain rice common in India and Pakistan. This is one type of rice that you should be able to find pretty much anywhere.

Jasmine: Another long-grain rice is jasmine rice, also known as Thai fragrant rice. Like basmati, jasmine rice is highly popular and easy to find. It is often prized for the fact that it cooks up a bit on the sticky side.

Brown: Brown rice is less processed and darker in color than white rice. It still contains the germ and bran layers that are typically removed from white rice. Therefore, it is more nutritious than white rice, but it is also a bit more time-consuming to cook. Due to its less-processed nature, brown rice has a much shorter shelf life than white rice.

Wild: Often added to rice blends, wild rice isn’t actually a true rice at all, but rather the seed of marsh grass. Wild rice contains more fiber and protein than white rice, which can be a plus for those seeking to add protein to their diets. Like brown rice, wild rice can take longer to cook than white rice.

Sticky: Also known as sweet rice, this short-grain rice sticks together when cooked, making it a must for sushi. Often grown in Asia, sticky rice is a staple in a wide range of Asian dishes.

Forbidden: Also known as black rice due to its color, forbidden rice adds a nutty flavor and high nutrients to Thai and Chinese dishes.

Quantity

Rice is typically sold in quantities of 1 to 10 pounds. Bottom line: give some thought to how much rice you will need and know how much you are getting.

Certified rice

Some sellers state that their rice is certified kosher, which is a bit unnecessary because all legumes and grains, including rice, are considered kosher, so we’re kind of in “water is wet” territory here.

Non-GMO certification is a bit different. While some makers state on the package that the rice is non-GMO certified, other rice varieties are actually genetically modified to enhance or limit certain aspects of the rice, be it taste, texture, or nutritional content. If you are limiting GMO foods in your diet, keep an eye out for a non-GMO statement on a rice listing.

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Did You Know?
Rice is actually an edible seed from one of two different grass species: African rice (Oryza glaberrima) and the more common Asian rice (Oryza sativa).
Staff
BestReviews

Features

Container

Unless you are planning on cooking all the rice at once, the bag or bin that it ships in is likely to become its long-term storage container. These range from simple poly bags to thick bags with zip lock tops to rugged plastic containers with lids. The best storage container for rice is a durable one that holds up over time and seals in freshness via a zip lock, lid, or screw cap. Any bag or container you use should also be BPA-free.

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Did You Know?
Around 75% of the rice consumed in the world is grown in irrigated fields and is known as lowland rice.
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Rice prices

A number of factors may affect the price of rice.  The type of rice can affect how much you pay per ounce. If you get a bulk amount, the price tends to be much less per ounce. Everything from weather to global pandemics can affect rice supply, which in turn can impact price. And don’t discount the mark-up that you will find with well-known brands.

That said, here is a rough idea of what you can expect to pay for several different types of rice.

Inexpensive: Basic long-grain white and brown rice tend to cost around $0.10 per ounce. Expect to pay a bit more for brown rice than white rice here.

Mid-range: In the mid-range, you will find familiar rice such as jasmine ($0.10 to $0.20 per ounce) and basmati ($0.15 to $0.25 per ounce).

High-end: High-end rice includes forbidden rice, which costs $0.30 to $0.40 per ounce, and wild rice, which costs $0.40 to $0.50 per ounce. Rice mixes that combine several different types of rice will also be in the $0.30 to $0.40 per ounce range.

Dyk2 
Did You Know?
Some rice varieties, such as basmati and sticky rice, turn out better if you soak them in water before cooking them.
Staff
BestReviews

Tips

  • If you get enriched rice, don’t rinse it. This type of rice is coated with a vitamin/mineral spray that easily washes off in water. All other rice types should be rinsed to remove the starch coating, which can lead to gummy rice if allowed to stay on.
  • To take your dinner or side dish to the next level, try a rice blend. These blends usually combine several different rice types, which can create a more varied taste and texture.
  • If you are in a hurry, try instant rice. Also called quick rice, it can save you a considerable amount of cooking time. However, this type of rice tends to have less flavor and texture than traditional rice.
  • Cook your rice in a pan with the cover tightly sealed. This helps keep the steam in. Failure to do so can result in undercooked rice.
  • For an easier rice-cooking method, try the microwave. Microwaving rice requires less hands-on work and less cleanup. Note that microwaving rice usually requires less water than other methods.
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Seeking to lose weight? Go with brown rice, which is low in calories, has less carb content, and is more nutritious than white rice.

FAQ

Q. What is parboiled rice?

A. Parboiled or converted rice is, in many ways, right in the middle of the spectrum between white and brown rice. Parboiled rice undergoes a steam-pressure treatment that allows it to cook up fluffier than traditional rice while retaining more of the rice kernel nutrients than white rice. It takes a bit longer to cook than white rice, which may allow it to work better in slow cooker recipes that call for rice.

Q. What is the best method for cooking rice?

A. There are a variety of ways to cook rice, and the method you use may be dictated by personal preference or the type of rice you’re cooking. The three most common methods of preparation are absorption, steaming, and boiling.

  • Absorption: Rice is often cooked using absorption. In this method, specific amounts of rice and water are added to a pot. The mixture is then cooked until the water is completely absorbed, and the rice is done.
  • Steaming: In this method, rice (often pre-soaked) is added to a steamer basket over boiling water and steamed until it is done. One plus here: you won’t burn the rice or end up with rice stuck to the bottom of a pot.
  • Boiling: Boiling rice is similar to boiling pasta. Water and rice are added to a large pot, and the rice is allowed to cook for a specific amount of time. The rice is then drained and cooled with cold water to stop the cooking process. This method is often used to cook brown rice.

Q. How long does rice last?

A. This depends on whether it is cooked and what type of rice we are talking about. Uncooked white rice can last for one to three years when stored in a dry, cool, dark area. Note, however, that brown rice has a considerably shorter shelf life of up to six months.

When cooked, rice can be kept in the refrigerator for two to three days. You can also store it in the freezer for up to eight months.

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