How to Cook Nishiki Rice

A steaming bowl of Nishiki rice sits on a plack table with a pair of chopsticks aside it.
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The cornerstone of the Japanese diet, Nishiki rice is a Japonica medium-grained, slightly sticky rice that begs to be eaten with chopsticks and molded into sushi rolls. If you don't know how to make Japanese rice, it can be quite tricky. However, with a few simple steps, you are able to create a light and fluffy rice on the stove or in a rice cooker with ease.

On the Stove

Step 1

Measure your desired amount of rice with a measuring cup and pour it into a pot. Add water to the pot and swirl the rice around several times until the water becomes cloudy, then pour the water out. Repeat this process two or three times and drain the water from the rice.

Step 2

Measure fresh water and it add to the pan. For each cup of dry rice that you are cooking, you will need to add 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons of water Allow the rice to soak in the water for 30 minutes to 1 hour before cooking. Cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid.

Step 3

Turn the heat to high and bring the water to a boil. Once you hear the water boiling, without lifting the lid, turn the heat down to medium and cook the rice for 5 minutes. Then, turn the rice down to low and cook for 10 minutes. Remove the rice from the heat and, leaving it covered, let it rest for an additional 10 minutes. Remove the lid and fluff the rice with a fork.

In the Rice Cooker

Step 1

Add the measured amount of rice you are using to your rice cooker's bowl. Add water to cover it and swirl it around several times with your hand. Pour the water out and repeat this process several times until the water is relatively clear. Drain the rice.

Step 2

Measure and add the amount of water you need. Use 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons of water for each cup of rice you are cooking. Leave the rice to soak for 30 to 60 minutes before you beginning cooking.

Step 3

Turn your rice cooker on. Once the cooking cycle is complete, fluff the rice with a fork and serve.


Rinsing and soaking Japanese rice in an important part of achieving properly cooked rice. While a 30 minutes soak is ideal, if you are short on time, soak rice for at least 10 minutes to allow it to soften and cook more evenly.


Cooking rice creates a lot of steam which can be dangerous. Along with preventing the rice from cooking properly, lifting the lid of rice cooking on the stove or in a rice cooker can be dangerous and cause burns.