Should You Rinse Your Rice

Rice is one of the most popular grains throughout the world. As recipes for rice can be found in just about every cuisine worldwide as well, this has lead to culture clashes over the simple matter of weather to rinse rice or not.

In much of Asia, rinsing rice is a part of cooking. Whereas, in many Western countries, there is greater tolerance for clumpy rice as rinsing is less common.

When it comes to food preparation, it is customary to wash fruits and vegetables before cooking and eating them. But what about rice?

The majority of recipes and rice packages do suggest rinsing rice before cooking it.


Bowl Of Cooked White Rice

That sounds like a good idea as rinsing will get rid of dirt, dust, bugs, and debris things you probably don’t want on your dinner plate.

Should You Rinse Your Rice

Current studies have reported that, as rice is grown, it can pick up arsenic that is found naturally in soil. Arsenic is an element that can exist in soil, water, plants, animals, and the air. It can be toxic when consumed in large amounts.

Experts suggest rinsing rice in order to remove the arsenic. However, research by the FDA reports that rinsing rice before cooking has a “minimal effect” on the arsenic content.

Rinsing rice also helps remove excess starch. This is especially true for white rice. Rinsing away the starch can result in a fluffier and lighter textured rice and more of a separation between the individual grains.

Not Rinsed Before Cooking Long Grain White Rice

Not rinsing the grain could result in a pot of gummy or overly sticky rice.

A dish like risotto that uses Arborio rice, doesn’t require rinsing, as the starch helps create the ideal creamy texture for the dish. Like this Pumpkin Pecan Risotto With Dried Cranberries & Goat Cheese.

Should You Rinse Enriched Rice

A package of enriched white rice has been thoroughly washed, then coated with a dusting of vitamins and other nutrients. Rinsing will remove a large portion of these beneficial ingredients.

Enriched rice is typically low in dirt and other contaminants, but it does still contain surface starch.

According to MasterClass – Cook enriched rice according to the package instructions because too much water will dilute its nutritional value.

The variety—such as jasmine rice, extra-long grain white rice, or basmati rice—and whether or not the rice is parboiled will dictate the water-to-rice ratio and cook time.

Ultimately, choosing to rinse or not to rinse your rice is entirely up to you. Skipping the rinse might alter the texture, but it won’t ruin it.

How to Rinse Rice

If you choose to wash your rice, rinse the rice under running water in a sieve.

Start with cold water and keep rinsing until the water runs almost clear, about 2-3 minutes.

Alternatively, you can rinse rice using a large class bowl. Add the rice first, then add cold tap water making sure rice is submerged.

With clean hands, move the rice about in the bowl several times. Then stop and wait for the rice to settle to the bottom of the bowl.

You will note cloudy water and some impurities floating on the surface.

Next, tilt the bowl just a little to pour the impurities plus the cloudy water. Try to pour all the water out, and do not let any rice escape. Repeat this process 2-3 times.

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