Rice Cooker Bread

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Introduction: Rice Cooker Bread

So, let's say you're a student. You live in a residence, and they probably don't allow hot plates. You definitely can't have an oven. But you love baking bread! Well, never fear, I have the answer. Rice cooker bread. Rice cookers are usually ok to use in residences because they have an auto-off (or at least auto-don't cook anymore) so that you won't burn anything down. And the bread they make is just delicious.

This will take you anywhere from 3-5 hours, so make sure you budget yourself enough time. Prep time is about 30 mins, then two 1 hour rises, plus 1.5-3 hours of baking depending on yuor rice cooker.

Step 1: Ingredients

Gather your ingredients. You'll also need a rice cooker. Fancy ones are probably better, but mine is the simplest they come, so yours can do it too!

You'll need:

1.5 cups flour
5 grams yeast
21 grams sugar (about 1.5 tbsp)
6.5 grams salt (about 1.5 tsp)
21 grams butter
30ml milk
180 ml water

once you've made it a couple times you can adjust the ingredients to taste, or add in your own secret ingredients. This is a very flexible bread, its taste is not very strong, so it could easily take on other flavours. A saltier or yeastier bread goes very well with chilie, by the way.

Step 2: Mix Dry Ingredients

Before you start, put your 5g yeast in a bowl or cup and add a pinch of sugar and a little (maybe 1/4cup) warm water. Let it proof for aroud ten minutes.

Mix them up into the bowl of your rice cooker. Yeah, right in there! You don't really need any more than three dishes for this bread, I love it.

That's your flour, salt, and sugar.

Step 3: Add Wet Ingredients

Add the water, milk and yeast. Just dump them right in along with the dry ingredients.

Step 4: Mix

This is probably the longest step. You've got to mix this stuff up, and since it's in your rice cooker (probably non-stick) bowl, you don't want to use a mixer. You'll scratch all the non-stick off! Just mix it by hand. People have done it that way for thousands of years, don't be a baby. I'm serious, i hate whiners.

Knead it for about 8-10 minutes, adding a little more flour if it seems too wet. The end result should be a coherent ball of dough that isn't too sticky. Form it into a ball.

Step 5: Add the Butter

This gets its own step because it's so much fun, and important too! Grab your butter, slap it on the dough ball, and knead it in. Knead it in your rice cooker bowl, as this will grease the bowl as well. This is making your bread so delicious that you will have to beat people off with a stick. You could sell it for a dollar a slice! Butter!

Knead it until the butter is all in there and there are no lumps. Your dough should stll be in a coherent ball. It's now ready to sit around for a while.

Step 6: 1st Rise

The first rise is 1 hour. I suggest you use this time to clean up your dishes. Just leave the bread (in the rice cooker bowl) somewhere warm. I've used the rice cooker (on warm setting) a couple times and it works very well.

Let the dough sit undisturbed for an hour, and it will double in size. This is because the yeast in there is eating up the starch and sugars in the flour and breathing out CO2. The CO2 dissolves into the dough, and either escapes, or expands the air bubbles in the dough that were there from mixing. Your dough gets bigger!

Step 7: Punch It Down

DON'T PUNCH IT! You just need to pick it up, and drop it from about 50cm. Do it a couple times and your dough will return to its original size. It's now ready for the second and final rise. Let it be in a warm place.

Step 8: Second Rise

Same as the first. Just leave it alone for 1 hour, and it will puff back up to double its size. Yeast is amazing.

Step 9: Baking Begins!

The original instructions i received for this bread (from Yakitate Japan, an anime about baking that I love) say you should bake it for an hour the first time. I've found that, probably due to my rice cooker's total lack of brains, it only needs about a half hour, and not even on Cook for all of that time. You'll have to be close by to monitor it every now and again to make sure the bottom doesn't burn. Just try and get a feel for it.

I jam an eraser into the switch if i think it should be on cook longer than it wants to.

i don't think you need to see pics of my rice cooker on. It looks just like the rice cooker in every other picture so far except the light is red. And, i didn't take any pictures for these steps. Sorry.

Step 10: Flip and Bake Two

This is the second baking period. It is also supposed to be 1 hour, but it isn't for me. The cooker you use probably makes all the difference here.

Flip your bread out and turn it upside down. Throw it back on Cook!

Step 11: Flip and Final Bake

You're so close you can smell it. Actually, by now, you've been smelling it (and hopefully loving it) for anywhere between 1 and 2 hours already. You are a lucky dog. Final bake is the same length of time as the first two.

Step 12: Why It Works, and EAT THAT SUCKER

Let it cool a little first.

The reason this works out ok is this. In a conventional oven, the bread is cooked by the hot air that circulates aroudn the oven. In a rice cooker, the bread is cooked by the pot that touches it directly. Since the pot is transferring more heat than the air, it doesn't need to get as hot. So what if your rice cooker only goes up to 110 Celcius? You can still bake great bread!

hit it with a little of that butter first, holmes. It's better that way.

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    91 Comments

    I know this was 5 years ago but if you can substitute coconut oil 1 to 1 for butter. Same consistency and it will make the bread slightly nutty in flavor.

    Science happens! record your findings if you attempt this. You will need some other fat to prevent the dough from sticking to the sides of the cooking pot.

    Acidentally burned one side, after only 15 minutes cooking. Turned out fine though, nice. I did have to add a whole lot more flour though. Still, great idea!!

    Hmm, challenge accepted. I had this idea on the way back home tonight and I have learned it is always best to check instructables to see if anyone has paved the way. I am not a student, I am an ex-chef that used to cook the bread for our restaurant everyday. Tired of the long hours and shit pay I re-trained as an English teacher and I am currently in Shanghai. I only have two hobs (gas tops) and a rice cooker. I am going to do a few experiments and get back to you on this one. Good on you sir.

    1 reply

    Well what were your results?

    Can this be done with a slow cooker or crock pot?

    3 replies

    crock pot bread baking was all the rage in the 70's often in an old coffie tin with the top cut out and buttered and slid into the round crock pots... if using an oval crock pot try just useing a metal bread loaf.. When I get another crock pot I am trying this.. When I get a rice cooker I am trying this.. (both on amazon for under 40.00 dollars and on my amazon wish list.

    sure, i don't see why not!

    I made your bread - excellent!
    A co-worker stopped by to give me a loaf of bread she had baked in her rice-cooker. (therefore getting me interested) It was robust to say the least. I recommend everyone also try a plain old white bread recipe (no butter) to see what it is possible. Today I made yellow cake. It turned out about 50 times better than I expected. Same plot. Just throw everything together and cook it till its done. I used the first recipe I came across:
    cake recipe

    suihankicake.JPG
    5 replies

    It's so cute!!! >.<

    did you make this cake in a conventional rice cooker or the one with baking function? cause your cake looks amazing. i tried baking a cake in a normal rice cooker the one without the baking function and my cake got burnt at the bottom and didn't cook all the way through. if you don't mind, share some baking tips using a rice cooker with me. would mean a lot. thanks.

    I have never seen a rice cooker with a baking function.   It was a standard rice cooker, HOWEVER, it was a standard JAPANESE rice cooker (fancy!) - not one of those $15 Wal-mart jobs with only one switch.  I believe the nicer ones have thermostats to prevent them from getting too hot.  When doing a cake, you really can't flip it easily, so you need a kinder, gentler cooker.  Those cheap ones are pretty harsh - which is fine with a bread, because you can flip it when you need to.  If you don't want to shell out the $$$ for a fancy nice cooker, I would suggest attempting to flip your cake, if possible, or maybe lining the bottom with something? 

    wow! Nice loaf! Did you have to flip it, or did it cook all the way through on its own? I just made some soda bread a couple days ago that turned out really well, but i've noticed that so far rice cooker bread lacks a lot of the fluff and texture that oven bread has.

    That is the cake I made - not the bread. No flip needed. I should have taken a picture of the loaf my friend made. It had perfect fluff and texture, and an excellent crust, however you are right: It will not be possible to get a really thick, tough, or crispy crust on a bread using a rice cooker, but some recipes will do better in the cooker than others, I think. If you haven't already, I suggest making up a plain loaf to see what you can do with it. Just flour, water, yeast (and a pinch of sugar for the yeast). Here are some links to some Japanese pages on RCbread: 1234

    I just moved to Japan a couple of months ago and have been wishing I could make homemade bread but unfortunately ovens are very uncommon here. Luckily I have a rice cooker and stumbled upon this site! I was wondering if anyone has tried this with whole wheat? Any suggestions?

    Tried it out today and made pictures to show how it turned out.
    (I added a soda can to the picture to give a scale idea of the result)
    My rice cooker is a chinese Philips one and I used the standard rice cooking program twice - for each side once that is.
    I still prefer an oven baked bread, but if you sont have that option, it's a very nice alternative.

    IMG_0812.JPGIMG_0813.JPG
    1 reply

    That looks delicious! Yeah I definitely prefer oven bread as well, and it's a luxury I now enjoy, but when you're in a pinch this is great and very tasty.

    If you don't want to have to mix up the ingredients every time, go to motherearthnews.com and search for no-knead bread. Click on the first one, and you can make a big batch of dough that rises, then store it in your refrigerator for up to two weeks! I have used the dough to make flatbreads, loaves, and even as I write, I have some dinner roll-sized thingies in a dutch oven in my regular oven. When I saw this rice cooker posting though, I realized that the two were made for each other! Make the dough, then use the steamer thing to steam-bake it in the rice cooker! I just set mine to cooking a few minutes ago. I'll let you know how it turns out.
    Self-reliance is BEST! I bake my own bread, brew my own beer, grow my own tobacco, and roll my own smokes. I get by cheaper than buying stuff, and have better stuff than store-bought.