Can opener and rice cooker
November 8, 2016 2:12 PM   Subscribe

I am tired, it's been a long year, and I need some new items for my kitchen. Please make my consumer decisions for me.

OK, so both my manual can opener and rice cooker died this week. Just tell me what to buy. Please. I'd like to never have to replace these items again if I don't have to.

My rice cooker preferences: the old one was a crappy one-button Panasonic thing. It was the thing we cooked rice in but it didn't actually make my life easier in any way. We eat rice pretty frequently, but I don't cook for crowds, just a small family. It would be great if the new rice cooker in my life could handle different types of rice with equal aplomb, as the old rice cooker really didn't know WTF basmati was.

My can opener preferences: manual and hopefully will last forever and ever? I can't believe I have to replace this piece of junk.

It would make my easier this week if it's available through Amazon Prime.
posted by stowaway to Food & Drink (25 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Rice cooker: get a Zojirushi, like this one.
posted by needled at 2:15 PM on November 8, 2016 [4 favorites]

Best answer: I love my OXO can opener. It's manual, has worked very well for me for 6 years with no sign of slowing down, and cuts the cans in such a way that the edges aren't sharp (won't hurt yourself).

We have a Zojirushi rice cooker. Zujirushi is the best brand. You want the simple non-electronic version because they are less likely to fail. My husband's has lasted us forever. (I gave mine away when we moved in together.) The ones with microms can do more things, but it's another point of failure.
posted by ethidda at 2:15 PM on November 8, 2016 [5 favorites]

Best answer: Anything Zojirushi for the rice cooker. It handles different types of rice in its sleep, it has a congee setting, it even has a timer to start up the rice at a certain point, and it does it all with a lovely little chirpy song when it's finished. Yes, they are a little pricey but it's tied for my favorite/most essential small kitchen appliance (the other being my KitchenAid stand mixer) because it's versatile and foolproof.
posted by daikaisho at 2:15 PM on November 8, 2016

Best answer: nthing OXO can opener
posted by janey47 at 2:21 PM on November 8, 2016 [4 favorites]

Best answer: I also have the OXO can opener, it's great. Buy that one
posted by shelleycat at 2:23 PM on November 8, 2016

Best answer: Seconding the Zojirushi that needled linked. Ours is actually the one Amazon linked in the comparison section but they're very similar and work well.

We have a different version of the OXO can opener but it's also been going strong for years
posted by brilliantine at 2:30 PM on November 8, 2016

Best answer: My fuzzy logic Zojirushi is the best Christmas present I ever received. Since we all seem to agree on Zojirushi, I'll add that you should get a good size for your family. We have the 5.5 cup model for a rice-happy family of 3 and I'm very happy with it. (My old Tiger was smaller and that was sometimes a problem.)

I strongly endorse programming it so that you wake up to hot, perfectly-cooked steel cut oatmeal, as well. I used to mess around with a slow cooker bain marie situation, which was a huge faff. I am going to go set the thing up right now, since I'm thinking happy oatmeal thoughts.
posted by chocotaco at 2:31 PM on November 8, 2016

Best answer: I'm another one who has both a Zojirushi rice cooker and an OXO can opener, both of which have been in heavy use for years without any signs of slowing down, or indeed even any visible signs of wear.
posted by anderjen at 2:38 PM on November 8, 2016

Best answer: Nthing OXO can openers and Zojirushi rice cookers. Looks like you're all set!
posted by Everydayville at 2:45 PM on November 8, 2016

Best answer: Nthing Zojirushi rice cookers. Just be aware when looking at cup sizes they meant the cups that come with the rice cooker & not US measuring cups. So you might want a larger size than 5.5 cups if you have more than 4 people in your family or are big rice eaters or like left overs.

Also the OXO can opener.

Some things are just the best.
posted by wwax at 2:49 PM on November 8, 2016

Best answer: Get whatever OXO can opener is for sale. I have used a few versions in different households and they are all great.
posted by jeather at 3:10 PM on November 8, 2016 [2 favorites]

Best answer: i also have the zojirushi/oxo combo and both have made me exceedingly happy.
posted by koroshiya at 3:13 PM on November 8, 2016

Best answer: I asked for and got both those things for Christmas last year. Any zojirushi rice cooker and kuhn rikon can opener.
posted by misskaz at 3:44 PM on November 8, 2016

I have been pleased with my Swing-A-Way can opener for more than 25 years. If it broke, I'd buy another one. If I were younger than 40, I'd buy two.

If my hands quit working (arthritis, etc.), I'd buy one of these.
posted by Bruce H. at 4:01 PM on November 8, 2016 [2 favorites]

Best answer: I've had this OXO can opener for about six years and it's still great.
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 4:31 PM on November 8, 2016

Have you tried cooking rice in the microwave? It's dead simple and doesn't require purchasing another appliance.

Seconding the swing-away opener—the wall mounted model in particular. That handle is so much easier to manipulate than the ones that you turn with just your thumb and fingers.
posted by she's not there at 4:41 PM on November 8, 2016

You're kidding, right?

Don't get a rice cooker! Get an INSTAPOT!!

I keep waiting for my slow cooker to die so I can buy this versatile and beneficial item. It does it all. Christmas is coming and I'm going to treat myself this year and giveaway the slow cooker. Never had a rice cooker before, but after Christmas I will! And so much much more!!

Kitchen space is a premium. Don't sell yourself short. Get the Instapot and don't look back.
posted by jbenben at 4:45 PM on November 8, 2016 [3 favorites]

Best answer: Came here to suggest OXO can opener and Zojirushi rice cooked.
posted by hollyholly at 4:50 PM on November 8, 2016

I don't love the rice that comes out of my Instant Pot. I use my old Rival $20 pot, and if we were supposed to be eating as much rice as we do I'd buy a Zojirushi.

I love everything else it makes, though.
posted by Lyn Never at 6:09 PM on November 8, 2016

Mefi mail me if you're interested in a 3 cup Zojirushi.
posted by Marky at 11:01 PM on November 8, 2016

Best answer: My OXO can opener is starting to go, but it lasted 7+ years. It's cheap enough to replace that I'm not terribly fussed about replacing it.

Since you are a regular rice-eating family, nthing Zojirushi [or Cuckoo, if Korean; my Korean MIL got us a Cuckoo and the quality matches our previous Zoji]. I make ALL the grains in it and it handles them all beautifully. Primarily short-grain white rice, but also jasmine, basmati, arborio, forbidden, quinoa, farro, barley ... also, oatmeal, porridge, jook/congee ...
posted by Pandora Kouti at 7:54 AM on November 9, 2016

Response by poster: You folks had me sold the Zojirushi (especially about cooking oatmeal, we eat oatmeal for breakfast half the time). Then I got to jbenben's comment about the Instantpot. I love and cook a lot of Indian food so I did have in mind that a pressure cooker would be handy to have "someday." Now I am more undecided than ever! If there's any one reading this who has an Instantpot and can speak to their pros/cons, that would be helpful.

If only rice and oatmeal could make everything better.
posted by stowaway at 8:07 AM on November 9, 2016

I don't have an InstaPot, but I'd been thinking of getting one until I started reading reviews that describe it as a mediocre-at-best rice cooker. I might still be interested in one to replace our crockpot, but I'm less enthusiastic about it now that I'm not thinking it could also replace the rice cooker.

I have a Tatung rice cooker. I like it. You control the cook time by the amount of water you add to the outer pot. It does take some experimentation to figure out how to cook different types of rice and grains. I use it for white and brown rice, steel cut oatmeal, and steaming vegetables. We seldom make more than 3 c rice at a time, but the 10 c size is great for steaming a lot of vegetables. It has separate pans for doing fancier stuff, but I don't know how. The reasons I'd hesitate to recommend it is that it is not intuitive, foolproof, or programmable. If it ever breaks, I'll probably go for a Zojirushi, but I'm pretty sure the Tatung is indestructible so I'll never get that chance.
posted by Kriesa at 8:36 AM on November 9, 2016 [1 favorite]

I absolutely use my Instant Pot constantly, sometimes twice a day. I put my crock pot away because I'd much rather figure out dinner an hour in advance instead of 8-10. But I'd rather have sesame chicken or beef and broccoli going there and rice cooking simultaneously in something else, particularly when it needs to sit and wait for everything/everyone to be ready to sit down and eat, rather than the rice sit and get cold because I cooked it first, or have dinner sitting getting cold while I cook rice - probably not very well - afterwards.
posted by Lyn Never at 12:59 PM on November 9, 2016 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: Folks - I bought the oxo can opener immediately and it's great. I had to wait until Christmas for the Zojirushi … and … oh … I love this thing. I hate to be the person who says "I love this thing" but it has made my life so much easier. I set it up at night and every morning we have proper porridge and I don't have to deal with making breakfast for small children in an under-caffeinated state. And it's really great at rice, obviously. But the porridge, oh, the porridge …
posted by stowaway at 9:49 PM on January 4, 2017 [1 favorite]

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