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How to cook multigrain rice or brown rice in a rice cooker
잡곡밥 (밥솥)

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gluten free
prep time: 
5 min
inactive time: 
480 min
cooking time: 
60 min
total time: 
545 min

This recipe is for cooking multigrain rice, brown rice or a mix of white rice with other grains. Like multigrain bread, multigrain rice is much healthier than plain white rice. For this reason, many Koreans eat multigrain rice with their meals. In Korean, it's called "Japgokbap" meaning mixed grain rice. There is no one formula for what grains you have to use, but Koreans usually mix 5-10 different grains. Brown rice, brown sweet rice, black rice, barley, black pea, white pea, red bean, sorghum, millet, Job's tears, buckwheat, kidney bean, white cowpea and wild sweet rice are all examples of grains Koreans enjoy. Often they mix these grains with plain white rice, because white rice gives a nice smooth texture and has a stickiness that other grains lack.

The water ratio is different for cooking in a pot than for cooking white rice.
cooking multigrain rice in a pot
cooking white rice in a pot
cooking white rice in a rice cooker

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Change to: Metric US
1 cup  Rice, white short grain 쌀
1 cup  Mixed grains (multigrain) 잡곡
2½ cups  Water 물

Good to Know

1 cup (240ml) of rice usually serves 2 people.

For multigrain rice, pre-soaking is necessary unless you have a pressure rice cooker with mixed rice option. Ideally you want to soak it overnight (if not, at least 3 hours). To get the water ratio right (since the rice will start absorbing the water and you won't be able to tell how much more water you need), wash and add the right amount of water before soaking. Then, just cook without adding more water.

You can get pre-mixed grains at Korean grocery stores, or you can mix whatever grains you like. If you are cooking just plain brown rice, you can use water ratio for mixed grains.

Rice & Water Ratio

For cooking MIXED GRAINS or BROWN RICE in a RICE COOKER, the grain-water ratio is usually 1 part of multigrain & 1½ parts of water.
2 cups grains -> 3 cups water
3 cups grains -> 4½ cups water
4 cups grains -> 6 cups water

For cooking white rice using an electronic RICE COOKER, the rice-water ratio is usually 1 part of rice & 1 part of water.
The ratio may vary a little depending on the brand of rice and your personal preference. Some people like their rice more watery than others do.

2 cups rice -> 2 cups water
3 cups rice -> 3 cups water
4 cups rice -> 4 cups water
5 cups rice -> 5 cups water

If you are mixing white rice with mixed grains in a rice cooker, you need to use the above ratios to get the right amount of water.
For example,

* Mixing 1 cup white rice & 1 cup mixed grains:
1 cups water + 1½ cups water = total 2½ cups water

* Mixing 1 cup white rice & 2 cups mixed grains:
1 cups water + 3 cups water = total 4 cups water

* Mixing 2 cups white rice & 3 cups mixed grains:
2 cups water + 4½ cups water = total 6½ cups water

If you use a pot, the ratio is different. See cooking mixed rice in a pot

Frequently Asked Questions

What type of rice cookers should I buy?
If you can afford it, I highly recommend pressure rice cooker. Rice tastes much better with it especially for multigrain rice. Pressure makes the rice tenderer and brings out all the flavors well. I recommend Korean brands over North American brands. Think about it. Koreans eat rice every meal and they know how to make good rice cookers.

If your budget is tight, any rice cooker should do the job of cooking rice without the hassle of cooking in a pot.

More questions? Please leave your questions below in the comment section. We will do our best to answer as soon as we can.

Ingredient amounts in the recipe instructions are for the default serving size.
Click to enlarge photos.
Ingredient amounts in the recipe summary are for the default serving size.

1. Wash rice

Wash 1 cup of white rice and 1 cup of mixed grains (or brown rice) in cold water. Do not rub it too hard or too long as it will lose nutrients. Wash twice in total. After the second time drain the water as much as possible without losing the rice grains.

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Wash rice

  • in cold water
  • gently
  • twice

drain completely

2. Add water

Add 2½ cups water *See tips for water ratio for different amounts.

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Add 2½ cups water

3. Soak

For multigrain rice, pre-soaking is necessary unless you have a pressure rice cooker with mixed rice option. Ideally you want to soak overnight (if not, at least 3 hours).

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Soak overnight

image: clock.png 480 min

4. Cook

Place it in the rice cooker and select white rice (if there is an option). It’s best to leave it (don’t open) for 5-10 min even after the cooking completion light has come on.

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Place in the rice cooker

5. Serve

With a rice spatula, flip through the rice very gently. Serve in a rice bowl.

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Flip rice gently

Serve in a bowl