Steamed White Rice (Fluffy & Soft)

Simple, plain and absolutely essential. Steamed White Rice is the side dish that everyone needs to know how to make.

Steamed white rice

For some helpful tips before you begin, click here. (recommended)

Makes about 6 cups cooked rice.


  • 2 cups (195 g) uncooked long-grained rice, like jasmine rice
  • 3 cups (709 ml) cold water
  • optional – 2 tablespoons (30 ml) vegetable oil
  • optional – 1 teaspoon (5 g) fine salt


1. Rinse the rice.

– Rinse and drain the rice until the water drains clear, about 3 times.

2. Place all the ingredients in a heavy-bottomed saucepan.

– Place the rice in a 2-quart heavy-bottomed saucepan.
– If using oil and/or salt, stir into the rice until the rice is coated.
– Pour in the water and give the rice a stir.

4. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer over low heat.

– Bring the rice to a full boil over medium-high heat. 
– Turn the heat down to low and cover the rice. (Don’t be tempted to add more water.)
– Let the covered rice simmer and steam for 20 minutes. Do not lift the lid.

5. Take the rice off the heat and let sit before fluffing it up and serving.

– Take the rice off the heat and let sit for another 5 to 10 minutes with the cover still on.
– After letting the rice sit, take off the lid (finally) and fluff up the rice with a fork.
– Serve hot.

Steamed white rice in the pot

How to store and reheat leftover Steamed White Rice:

– Store in an airtight container and refrigerate.

– To reheat cold rice, sprinkle a little water on the rice then cover with plastic wrap and microwave until hot.

Steamed white rice

About this recipe

I love my rice cooker. I use it often. But I think it is important to know how to make Steamed White Rice on the stove top. For something as essential as rice, it could be considered a life skill!

Steamed White Rice can be served simply with a little butter and maybe some herbs, but is especially good with saucy, bold-flavored dishes like Adobong Manok.

And dishes using leftover Steamed White Rice, like tasty Sinangag (Garlic Fried Rice with Crispy Garlic), make it worth having a little extra rice left.


Here are 6 helpful tips:

1) The ratio of uncooked rice to water is 1 to 1 1/2.

– To make different quantities of rice, all you need to know is the proportion of rice to water: 1 part rice to 1 and 1/2 parts water.

– Each cup of uncooked rice will make about 3 cups cooked rice. So be sure also adjust the size of your saucepan accordingly.

2) If using different types of rice, follow package instructions.

– We use jasmine rice and basmati rice in our house. Basmati rice is cooked the same way as jasmine rice, but needs to be soaked in water first for about 30 minutes before cooking. For other types of rice, follow package instructions.

3) Use a heavy-bottomed saucepan, if you have one.

– Use a heavy-bottomed saucepan, if you have one. Heat gets distributed more evenly and gently, which should make the rice less likely to burn on the bottom.

4) Do not take a peek, do not lift the lid.

– Do not lift the lid. From the time you turn the heat to low thru the last finishing 5 to 10 minutes off heat, the lid must stay on to keep in the precious steam which the rice needs to absorb to become soft and fluffy.

5) Do not let steam escape.

– Check the lid to your pot. If the lid has a little hole to release steam, block it with a little piece of foil. (See image below.)

Rice steaming in the pot
Steamed White Rice needs steam. Don’t let it escape!

6) Steamed White rice cannot be rushed.

– Steamed White Rice cannot be rushed. Turning up the heat will not make the rice absorb the steam faster. You will most likely get rice that is mushy on the outside and still hard on the inside. For perfect rice, be patient.

Steamed white rice

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Related Recipes:

Serve your Steamed White Rice with…

Adobong Manok

Adobong Manok
Chicken braised in soy, garlic and bay leaf. This chicken is tender, moist and flavorful with crispy skin and plenty of sauce.

Have leftover rice?

Sinangag (Garlic Fried Rice with Crispy Garlic)

So flavorful. Must love garlic!

Other Filipino dishes….

Lumpiang Shanghai (Filipino Spring Rolls)

Lumpiang Shanghai
Crunchy, skinny little meat-filled spring rolls served with a garlicky. gingery sweet & sour sauce.


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