Original content posted May 2019. Updated June 2022.
Want rice that turns out perfectly every single time? This easy way to make rice in the microwave yields rice that is fluffy and clump free. It’s so simple to do and a great time saver for an easy dinner!
For years, we have cooked rice in the microwave, and everyone always asks us how we get our rice to be so clump free and the perfect rice? I always say, we just do it in the microwave! Seriously the easiest way ever!!
Have some questions like….
Typically for microwaving white rice, we use a 2:1 ratio of water to dry rice. If you’re making brown rice, you will want to use more water. You can find the ratios in a list in this post.
If you are making rice in the microwave, you can do 1 cup of dry white rice and 2 cups of water. It will yield 3 cups of cooked rice.
You can change out the water for chicken broth and feel free to add other seasonings. Looking to pair with a rotisserie chicken, try adding a tablespoon of lemon pepper seasoning to your rice before microwaving it.
If you are microwaving rice, you are going to want to leave the lid on. The steam helps to cook and plump the rice. If the lid is removed, you will end up with dry, crusty rice.
Have leftover rice? Simply put in a microwavable safe dish or container and sprinkle a teaspoon or two of water over before microwaving for a minute. This will help to soften up the rice again and bring back the moistness it may have lost.
:: PIN IT NOW FOR LATER ::
Making rice in the microwave is something I don’t even think much about since we have done it SO much. Everyone at our house loves rice, so it’s a side dish at our house quite often!
We love to eat rice as a side dish to go with this teriyaki grilled chicken! So tasty!
And, no worries about it sticking to the bottom of the pan like it does so often if you make it on the stove. And, no extra appliance needed, just your good old microwave!
ALL YOU NEED IS THE RIGHT RATIO OF WATER TO RICE, AND YOU CAN HAVE RICE THAT TURNS OUT PERFECTLY EVERY TIME!
So, what do you need to have if you’re wanting to cook rice in the microwave?
- the right ratio of dry rice to water
- the right size dish since the rice will triple in volume when cooked
- a microwave where you can change the power setting
The right ratio of water to rice is very, very important!
The most important part of cooking rice is the ratio between rice and water. Since you don’t touch the rice after you put it in the microwave, this ratio will help you cook the rice evenly. The right ratio will help the rice to cook evenly since after you start the rice in the microwave, there is no stirring or touching it!
You need the right size dish to avoid a mess in the microwave!
Your rice is going to expand while cooking, so try to use a larger casserole dish (or glass Pyrex mixing bowl or large glass measuring cup) than you might think you need.
You need a microwave where you can adjust your power settings.
Most microwaves have a setting where you adjust your power level. For some who’ve never changed that on their microwave, it’s probably just a matter of checking out your microwave’s buttons. The power setting is usually easy to figure out! Full power is going to be a 10 or 100% power. The lower you go, the “less” power there is.
So here’s what I did when I wanted 4.5 cups of COOKED rice
I used 1.5 cups of dry white rice and 3 cups of water.
If you want it to yield more or less rice, all you need to do is change the ratio of water to rice. Use a 2:1 ratio for regular white rice. (The larger number being the water amount, of course.)
(Use 2 1/4 cups of water to 1 cup of rice for whole grain brown rice. If I’m doing brown rice, I usually just splash a little more water in the casserole dish.)
So for making my 4.5 cups of cooked rice, I used 1.5 cups of dry white rice and 3 cups of water.
I placed the water, rice and a couple of tablespoons of butter or margarine and a dash of salt in a 2.5 quart casserole dish with a lid.
Basically you just need room for the water to boil and rice to expand as it will triple in volume as it’s cooking. So, depending on how much rice you’re cooking, you might have to experiment with what size casserole dish or microwavable glass bowl works best.
When we have more people home or people over for dinner, we know that we can get 2.5 cups of dry rice and 5 cups of water in our large casserole dish. . . . and just barely! And, how do we know? Because after making it over and over and it would boil over, we decided to experiment with how much we could get in there and it still fit. We got it to where it was the most we could get in the casserole and it still fit. Haha! So experiment and see what works for you!
I put the prepared casserole dish (with it’s lid on) in the microwave at 70% power for 25 minutes.
(We have this microwave–a Whirlpool, over the range microwave, 1000 watts of cooking power.)
When it was done, I let it sit another 5 minutes and then fluffed it with a fork. (To tell if it is done, you should clearly see that all the water in the dish has been absorbed.)
After being fluffed with a fork, it was ready to serve! So simple!
So, here’s a basic ratio done for you:
- 1/2 cup dry white rice, 1 cup of water yields 1.5 cups of cooked rice
- 3/4 cup dry white rice, 1.5 cups of water yields 2.25 cups of cooked rice
- 1 cup dry white rice, 2 cups of water yields 3 cups of cooked rice
- 1.25 cups dry white rice, 2.5 cups of water yields 3.75 cups of cooked rice
- 1.5 cups dry white rice, 3 cups of water yields 4.5 cups of cooked rice
- 1.75 cups dry white rice, 3.5 cups of water yields 5.25 cups of cooked rice
- 2 cups dry white rice, 4 cups of water yields 6 cups of cooked rice
- 2.25 cups dry white rice, 4.5 cups of water yields 6.75 cups of cooked rice
- 2.5 cups dry white rice, 5 cups of water yields 7.5 cups of cooked rice
- 1 cup whole grain brown rice, 2.25 cups of water, yields 3.25 cups whole grain brown rice
- 2 cups whole grain brown rice, 4.5 cups of water, yields 6.5 cups whole grain brown rice
Again, here are the basic steps to cooking rice in the microwave.
- First off, in a casserole dish or other microwavable safe bowl combine your dry rice, water, 1-2 Tbsp. butter or margarine and salt. Stir. Place the lid on. (If you don’t have a lid that goes with your bowl, a wet towel will work.) Refer back to the ratio of water to rice list (a little farther up in this post) according to how much rice you want to make.
- Put the dish in the microwave and change the power to 70%. Microwave for 20-25 minutes, leaving the entire time with no stirring or removing the lid.
- When it is done and you can clearly see that all the water is absorbed, remove from the microwave and let sit for 5 minutes with the lid on. This step is important in that leaving it to sit with the lid on will allow the steam to continue to plump the rice even more.
- Fluff with a fork and serve!
THIS FLAT-ROASTED CHICKEN PAIRS NICELY WITH RICE!
(click the image for the yummy recipe)