I want to have cooked rice in the morning when I wake up.

My plan is to prepare the uncooked rice before going to bed, add the water, set a timer and go sleep.

Is it possible to leave the rice and water in my rice cooker until a timer starts uo the cooking? Will soaking the rice overnight make it mushy?

  • 1
    Is your rice cooker the oriental style that seals like a pressure cooker, or American style that's just an electric steamer?
    – Eris
    Jun 22, 2016 at 5:15
  • 1
    If it wrecked the rice then it should not have the timer.
    – paparazzo
    Jun 22, 2016 at 11:10

1 Answer 1


If your rice cooker has that kind of timer, yes, you can do that. Just before you go to bed, add cold water (the same amount you would use if you were cooking it right away), rice and optional salt and butter. Stir well and set the timer for about 1/2 of an hour before you get up.

If you're using an external timer, be sure that it actually starts the rice cooker when it kicks on. Some appliances have to be switched on after they are plugged in.

There is not a complete consensus here that this is safe, but millions of Japanese do it, and there hasn't been a big enough outbreak of anything to warrant any kind of warning that I have ever seen. And many recipes call for 12 or more hours of room temperature soaking - including one I just did last week for sticky rice. For an extra level of protection, you can use ice water (including cubes) and measure it by weight. Just don't feed it to pregnant women or the immunocompromised, OK?

  • 3
    Huh, I always thought I would end up with a mushy pile of white stuff instead of rice... No reason not to try it then!
    – JS Lavertu
    Jun 21, 2016 at 23:49
  • 3
    @AerisFang Rice is often soaked before cooking. Some people usually cook all types of rice that way. Just start with cold water and set it up just before you go to bed. See also: cooking.stackexchange.com/questions/41142/…, both answers and comments. There is a very slight safety concern, but it is hugely common to soak rice overnight on the counter. Starting with very cold water somewhat mitigates that tiny risk.
    – Jolenealaska
    Jun 21, 2016 at 23:54
  • If the rice is sufficiently heated after soaking overnight would that not kill any possible bacteria anyway (obviously not enough for immunocompromised person but what regularly prepared food is)
    – SGR
    Jun 22, 2016 at 8:06
  • @SGR : The issue isn't the bacteria (Bacillus cereus), but the toxin that it produces (cereulide)
    – Joe
    Jun 22, 2016 at 13:41
  • @Joe Ah, understood
    – SGR
    Jun 22, 2016 at 13:42

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