3 slow cooker recipes to make in your rice cooker

A cross between a slow cooker, a clay pot oven and a stove top saucepan, a rice cooker is capable of more than just making rice. Read on for helpful suggestions on how to use a rice cooker to prepare three delicious slow cooker recipes.

3 slow cooker recipes to make in your rice cooker

Steel-cut oats

Oats aren't too different from rice when it comes to preparing them, so rice cookers are great for preparing things like oatmeal.

Here's how you can use your rice cooker to prepare steel-cut oats:

  • Put 1-1/4 cups of steel-cut oats, 3 cups of water and a pinch of salt into the rice cooker bowl, close the cover and set to porridge cycle.
  • If your cooker doesn't have a porridge setting, cook only half the maximum capacity of the rice cooker and use the regular setting.
  • The rule to follow to make great oats is to use about 3 parts liquid to 1 part steel-cut oats.
  • Many rice cookers have a delayed timing feature. This means you can put all your ingredients in the rice cooker bowl the night before, close the lid, set the timer and have oatmeal ready when you wake up.
  • Whenever you enjoy your oatmeal, just add your favourite toppings and dig in.

You can also use your rice cooker to cook other whole grains such as barley, farro and quinoa. You can enjoy them as hot breakfast cereals, salads, side dishes or desserts.

Poached pears

Pears require gentle cooking to remain whole as they poach. Rice cookers, with their low, even porridge cycles do a beautiful job with this. Here's how:

  • In a 6-cup rice cooker, place 4 firm, slightly under-ripe pears, peeled with stem intact.
  • Add 3 cups water, 1 cup sugar and the juice of 1 lemon to the rice cooker bowl.
  • You may soak the pears overnight, setting the delay timer, or just start the porridge cycle and checking the fruits' consistency after 30 minutes.
  • You'll know that your pears are ready once they're easily pierced with a fork. They should also retain some firmness.
  • Once your pears are ready, let them cool for an hour or more, but keep the poaching liquid to pour over the pears later.
  • When you serve them, consider adding a custard sauce or whipped cream and toasted nuts.

Chicken chili

Here's a recipe for a basic rice cooker chili. You can adapt it to suit your own tastes, experimenting with different beans, ground meats and degrees of spiciness.

  • Cook 450 grams of lean ground chicken in your rice cooker on the regular cycle until browned and cooked through.
  • Stir in 1 cup of tomato sauce, 1 tablespoon of tomato paste and 2 cans of your favourite beans.
  • Add half a packet of your favourite chili seasoning, 2 teaspoons dried oregano and salt and pepper to taste.
  • Let this simmer for a full cycle on the regular setting.
  • If you're looking for a way to punch up your chili's presentation, then serve bowls of it with dollops of plain Greek yogurt and chopped scallions.

Much more than just rice

A rice cooker is a great kitchen tool and something that can cook much more than just rice. To use your rice cooker for something new, give one of these three tasty recipes a try this week.

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