How To Steam Rice In A Bamboo Steamer

A Bamboo Steamer

If you are looking for a healthy way to steam rice without losing its nutrients, color, shape, and flavor, going for a bamboo steamer is the option so far. Also, you must have enough knowledge how to steam rice in a bamboo steamer perfectly.

Well, there’s nothing to worry as long as you are reading this article. We have come up with every necessary information you should know this topic. From what a bamboo steamer is to how you can use it and how you can maintain it, we’ve laid out every relevant information.

Let’s get to the point directly.

What is A Bamboo Steamer?

Several interlocking baskets are piled up on top of each other and come out as bamboo steamers. There is a pot What is A Bamboo Steamer?(filled with simmering water) under the entire setup. From the bottom of every basket, the open ridges let the steam rise as well as cook the rice inside the steamer.

You may find it a bit excessive to investigate a bamboo steamer, you may also think that a bamboo steamer is not one of the important cooking tools. But when you completely learn how to steam rice in a bamboo steamer, you will use it more often than you may have imagined.

This cooking method, steaming, is famous in Asian cuisine just like roasting and baking is in European and American cooking.

You have a number of options to steam (e.g rice, dumplings, buns, vegetables, breads, cakes, proteins, and whatnot) while using a bamboo steamer. Steaming is good for both cooking and reheating foods. Since steaming helps to reintroduce moisture to your food, you can easily make your food fresh again.

Another amazing feature bamboo steamers possess, their lids do not accumulate condensation that may drip into your food as well as change its appearance, taste, or texture.

Why Steam Rice Using a Bamboo Steamer?

If you are one of them who can ask ‘why steam rice is an option for me?’, then here you will find the answers.

  • If you don’t have a rice cooker just because you don’t cook rice so often that it justifies the purchase. Or perhaps, you own a rice cooker but you need to cook on the stove because the power went out.
  • Steaming rice lowers the chance of overcooking the rice as the liquid doesn’t touch the food here.
  • Steaming rice using a bamboo steamer means you have chosen a healthier option than boiling. Why? Well, since nutrients that are water-soluble will not become leached from your food into the water.

How to Steam Rice in A Bamboo Steamer

Now, let’s get to know how you can steam rice perfectly in a bamboo steamer.

Step 1: Fill a Wok With Water

The very first thing you have to do is to fill a wok or any other skillet, shallow pan with enough water. Make sure the water rises above the bottom rim of your steamer, it will be around ¼” to ½”.

Do this job carefully making sure that the water rises high enough to swamp the bottom of your steamer in the water as well as protect it from scorching. There’s an inside bed of your steamer, so it needs to be low enough as neither the inside bed nor the food sitting on it does get in touch with the bubbling water.

An additional point worth mentioning here is, if you are using a brand new bamboo steamer, you can do a trial to know if it does scorch or not. To do so, soak the bottom rim of your steamer and wait for around 30 minutes. And, once you’re done using it, you should pat it dry completely and then put it away.

Note: When you are putting something here in conjunction with the bamboo steamer, you want to use a wok because it’s the possible tool for this job. It’s because a wok is thin and it’s pretty easy to regulate water temperature as well as boil water when you use a wok here. Also, a wok comes with a wide rim that puts up different-sized bamboo steamers.

Step 2: Put the Rice into Your Steamer

Put the Rice into Your SteamerNow, it’s time to put your rice into the steamer. Make sure you have washed the rice properly before you place it into your steamer. And, the measurement, you will need the same amount of water as the rice to steam rice. For example, if you are steaming 3 cups of rice, you need to add 3 cups of water.

So, wash your rice under the tap until the water looks whitish. It will ensure that the surface starch of the rice is removed.

Then, you should submerge the rice in water for around 2-3 hours. Also, you can leave it longer if you want to.

Step 3: Cover the Inside of Your Bamboo Steamer

When you’re done with steps one and two, it’s time to line the bamboo steamer baskets. There are many levels of a bamboo steamer. Most steamers come with 3 levels and you can work with 1, 2, or 3 at once, based on the amount of food you want to steam.

You will need something to line the steamer using a cotton cloth or large leaves of vegetables like cabbage, using banana leaves is also a good idea. It will allow you to prevent your food from being stuck to the bamboo.

Step 4: Drain the Rice

We are almost done. Now, you need to drain the rice and then put it into your steamer. Do this task carefully as you don’t make a mess while draining the rice.

Step 5: Place Your Bamboo Steamer in Wok

Hence, you can choose one path between the two. You can preheat the water to make sure that it’s simmering while you put the steamer into your wok. On the other hand, putting a steamer into your wok while the water is cold can be another option. After that, turn the heat on and let the temperature up gradually.

Step 6: Allow Your Food to Steam

Allow Your Food to SteamYou will notice the vapor while the water in your wok starts simmering. The most important thing here is, make sure you don’t neglect the cooking of your rice.

You have to keep an eye on the whole process and check the water level frequently.

Steaming rice properly will take around 30 minutes. So, check if your rice is at the point you like it, then get back your steamer from the wok.

There you have it! Once you’ve taken the rice out of your steamer, you can simply serve it on your own.

How to Make Your Steamed Rice More Interesting

Do you want to make your steamed rice more interesting? Here are some useful ideas to make the rice more delicious.

  • Use coconut milk or tea instead of water to steam your rice. It will bring extra flavor and fragrance.
  • If you use water, add a small amount of water and salt to the water.
  • For more umami, go for vegetable stock, pork, stock, chicken stock, or mushroom stock.
  • Adding spices, tomato, fried onions, or any other flavor you want to add is a good idea to make your rice more delicious.

Tips to Care For Your Bamboo Steamer

It’s important to keep your bamboo steamer clean all the time. Proper cleaning and maintenance will ensure a longer lifespan for your steamer. Using organic products to clean your bamboo steamer is the option since it’s made of an organic ingredient.

Here’s how you can clean your bamboo steamer properly:

Using Lemon

You should avoid too abrasive cleaning agents to clean your bamboo steamer. And, guess what? Lemon is not too abrasive and also it brings a lovely smell. Moreover, lemon works like a champ when it comes to disinfecting the dishes.

Cleaning a bamboo steamer with lemon is pretty easy. You just need to take a slice of lemon as well as rub it to clean your bamboo steamer. Finally, rinse the steamer with fresh water and see how clean it is!

Using a Tea

Here’s another great way to clean your bamboo steamer perfectly. Grab a black tea first. Then soak the tea in a bowl filled with hot water. Once the teabag is soaked, rub it on the bamboo steamer and do this job gently.

It works great for removing any food or bacteria. Rinse your bamboo steamer using warm water, it will remove any remaining tea or any other unwanted residue.

Using a Nylon Brush

Don’t overlook this method thinking it’s an old-fashioned way. Sometimes, it’s the option to return to the old-fashioned method and simply scrub. However, make sure you use a soft nylon brush because bamboo steamers are quite a bit delicate.

To make it happen, steam the bamboo in the very first place. It will make sure that you deep clean your bamboo steamer. After that, get a bowl filled with hot soapy water and get a soft-bristled nylon brush. Finally, use cold water to rinse the bamboo steamer. Make sure there’s no soapy water left on your steamer before using.


Frequently Asked Questions

How much water should I use to steam rice?
It varies based on the type of rice you are going to steam. However, 2 cups of water for one cup of rice is the basic ratio.
How do I know when rice is done steaming?
It takes almost 30 minutes to get the rice done. Perfectly steamed rice should be soft and sticky.
Is steaming quicker than boiling?
Yes, steaming requires less time than boiling. Also, it’s always better to steam your food than boiling.



Hopefully, you have got a crystal clear idea of how to steam rice in a bamboo steamer. It’s not an uphill battle to do the job. You can simply make it happen by following our instructions carefully.

One important point we want you to remember, always use a potholder when it comes to removing the lid. It will keep you from scorching or burning. Also, maintain a minimum distance from hot water to avoid any unwanted happenings.

Good luck!

Mumtahina Adira

Hello World! I am Home Improvement blog writer of KnowBend. I also try to use the product and then write a review about the product, so that my audience is not harmed.

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