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Fluffy steamed white rice is a must-have on my family’s dinner table as long as I remembered. As young as 12 years old, I was tasked with the daily chore of washing the rice and cooking it in the rice cooker. I remembered my mother always asked me to preserve the rice water so we can wash our face and also water the plants with it. It’s believed to have anti-aging effect on our skin. My family loves white rice, especially from Thailand, the Hom Mali rice, also known as Jasmine rice or fragrant rice. As we live separately now, I do not have a rice cooker in my home and would sometimes cook rice on the stove instead. My mother’s method of cooking rice always work. And here’s how it rolls – how to cook white rice on the stove.

Water to rice ratio

The most methodological way to measure water to rice ratio is simply using the measuring cup. One cup rice to one and 1/4 cup of water. There are methods where one can use the finger or the hand to measure but this measuring cup method works better for me. This is despite what Uncle Roger says in the video below — use the finger, but everyone has got different length of finger no? ????

The art of washing the rice

Wash the rice in water 4-6 times, the cloudiness of water will start to clear out and it means lesser starch on the rice thus after cooking, the rice will be less sticky and gluey. According to Japanese rice cooker brand Zojirushi, there’s an art to rice washing, such as the strength used and the number of times you should wash rice, depending on the type of rice.

wash rice

How to cook rice on a stove

Cooking the rice on the stove requires careful monitoring, in order to make sure we do not undercook or overcook the rice. Making sure you see the rice boiling and know when to turn down the fire and eventually turn off the fire is key.

How to keep leftover rice

The key is to cool and refrigerate leftover rice as quickly as possible. It’s important to let it cool thoroughly before putting it in an airtight container and then chill in the fridge. I prefer to keep the rice for no more than a day before reheating it or using it to cook fried rice. Anything more than that, if the rice smells bad, you should throw it away.

Need some ideas on dishes to accompany rice? Check out my post on mapo tofu.

steamed white rice

Fluffy Steamed White Rice

How to cook white rice on the stove – here is my Mummy's recipe tried and tested. Washing and cooking rice is one of the first chore I learnt from my mother since 12 years old.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course dinner, lunch
Cuisine Chinese
Servings 2 persons
Calories 68 kcal


  • 1 cup white rice washed and drained
  • 1 ¼ cup water


  • Wash the rice in water 4-6 times, the cloudiness of water should clear out after every wash.
    wash rice
  • Add 1 1/4 cups of water to rice (I used 1 cup of rice). Take note that the ratio is 1 cup rice to 1 1/4 cups of water.
    wash rice
  • Boil the rice on high heat. This step should take about 5-6 minutes. Keep the lid on but you can take off the lid once in a while to see if it's boiling.
    wash rice
  • Once the rice started to boil, and water bubbling on the surface, turn heat to the lowest and cook the rice over simmering fire. This step should take about 3 minutes. During this process, keep the lid on but check once in a while.
    wash rice
  • Rice is considered cooked when the bubbling stops. Turn off the fire.
  • Keep the lid on for another 10 min to steam the rice.
  • Fluff the rice gently with a fork or spatula to break up any lumps. Cooked rice should be of light, soft and fluffy consistency. It's perfectly cooked if it doesn't stick to the bottom.



Calories: 68kcal
Keyword chinese, rice
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