Investing and the Filipino

Energy Saving: Rice Cooker vs. Microwave Oven

Posted by tagabacolod on July 31, 2007

May I digress…

Our highschool batch yahoogroups discuss interesting topics in our threads. We have topics ranging from tuna chorizo to the effects of laptops on men’s fertility.

The “hot” topic today was cooking rice using the microwave.

Apparently, some of my friends have been nuking their rice and it struck me as amazing. Naturally, I “googled” around and saw some tips on how to do it. For my friends “technique” involves “microwaving” the rice at 5 minute intervals and stirring until done. Generally, they said, it takes them 14 to 15 minutes to cook their rice.

Now, I cook rice using the rice cooker. I prefer leaving it there while doing other stuff while I wait for it to be done. Now here comes my question:

Which of the two methods would be more energy efficient?

So, again, I “googled” around. I am lucky. Believe or not, four Indian scientists did a study comparing the energy consumption of cooking rice using the microwave, electric rice cooker, and the pressure cooker.

The title of the paper is “Energy consumption in microwave cooking of rice and its comparison with other domestic appliances and was authored by S. Lakshmi, A. Chakkaravarthi, R. Subramanian, , and Vasudeva Singh.

I didn’t have access to the full paper ( I’d have to buy it), but the abstract gave me what I needed to know.

Among the cooking appliances, the electric rice cooker was the most energy-efficient while the microwave had the least cooking time (15 – 22 min). Now, this one’s useful, right?

And oh, here’s the bit that interested me the most. Presoaking the rice will save us energy between 5 to 11%. 🙂


Related to this here’s a blog by The Ethicurean.


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