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How to cook rice in an air fryer

Ever thought about cooking rice in the air fryer?

How to cook rice in an air fryer

No rice cooker? No problem. Cooking rice in an air fryer is easy. It also requires a lot less babysitting than hob or stove-cooked rice. So you can get on with the rest of your meal, while the air fryer hums quietly in the background.

What do you need to cook rice in an air fryer?

To cook uncooked rice, you’ll need a couple of bits and bobs from elsewhere in the kitchen, because you won’t be able to cook rice in the normal air fryer basket. Rice needs water to cook, and you can’t just tip cups of water in there. So, make sure you’ve got a sieve, a cake tin or barrel (this is what the rice will go in), some water, the kettle, and a pinch of salt.

…and of course, an air fryer.

Cooking rice in an air fryer 

 Start by straining your rice with warm water to remove all the starch. Long-grain rice works best with the air fryer. Boil the kettle and set the air fryer to preheat at 200°C for a few minutes. Once your rice is sufficiently strained (and the water is clear), pop it into the cake tin and add your boiled water and salt. Tightly cover the dish with aluminium foil, stick it in the air fryer and cook for 25 minutes.

 When it’s done, the tin and foil will be very hot. So, make sure you use oven gloves to retrieve the tin from the air fryer basket. Gently remove the foil, let the rice dry for a bit, fluff up with a fork and serve.

Is it the same for all rice?

While the method for cooking rice doesn’t vary massively and therefore won’t make a difference in an air-fryer, there are some types of rice that just won’t work.

For instance sticky rice which is made from short grain rice needs steaming and so is much better cooked in a rice cooker or in a steamer. Read up on our guide on how to use a rice cooker here.

 Air-frying pre-cooked and ready-to-heat rice

 Ready-to-heat rice isn’t really a perfect fit for the air fryer – stick to the microwave. However, you can reheat leftovers from yesterday. It’s simply a case of placing them in an oven-proof dish, or a cake tin like we mentioned above, and making sure everything is evenly warmed throughout. Make sure to remove the grate from the basket beforehand, to give you a little bit more clearance at the top.

 Throw in your favourite supporting ingredients, like some protein or veggies, and a splash of oil or butter, and you’ll be enjoying lightly toasted rice in no time. Aim to cook for around 15 mins (varying depending on how much is in the basket), stirring regularly to ensure everything gets cooked thoroughly. Although you can try this with any type of rice, long-grain is best, as short-grain can be a bit tricky when dry.

Looking for some more inspiration on what to cook tonight? Check out our how-to page, full of step-by-step guides.