How to Fix Undercooked Rice: Tips to Deal with Mushy Rice, Hard Rice and Crunchy Rice

We still think that cooking rice is a very basic thing and it is difficult to make mistakes. But actually that’s not true. If you miscalculate the ratios or timing incorrectly, your delicious rice cooker may turn mushy, hard or crunchy. That’s why KITCHENBAR thinks everyone should know how to fix undercooked rice.

How to Tell if the Rice is Undercooked or Overcooked

How to tell if the rice is undercooked or overcooked

If this is your first time cooking rice, chances are you did it incorrectly. It can be overcooked or overcooked.

Undercooked rice means all the water has evaporated, but the grains are still quite stiff at the core. You can easily feel this hardware when you press on a bead with your thumb. While the outer parts can be easily pressed in, you will find that the middle will be difficult to crush. Here’s how you know the rice is undercooked.

Far from the soft and smooth texture we think of perfectly cooked rice, undercooked rice will be a bit stiff and crunchy. On the other hand, overcooked rice has a soft, watery feel, and has a consistency that is almost identical to a mashed potato.

How to fix Undercooked Rice

How to fix undercooked rice

Mushy Rice

You may all have gone through the grainy scenario (or you won’t be able to avoid it) and I assume most of you have tried to solve the problem one way or another. Of course, I hope you will also share your ideas and efforts later. In fact, there are many ways you can try to ease the situation and save your rice dish, for example:

  • Microwave the mushy rice

Most people microwave when they need to fix the rice paste. Why? It is the simplest and fastest solution out there.

Step 1: Spread rice on a baking tray.

Step 2: Microwave on low setting for a minute or two.

  • Refrigerate the mushy rice

There is a “cool” solution to the rice paste problem, and it’s also very easy.

Step 1: Place your rice paste on a baking sheet (the thinner the layer, the faster it will dry) and then cover with parchment.

Step 2: Transfer the rice to the refrigerator and let it sit for about half an hour.

Step 3: Once the rice is dry, microwave it, reheat it and serve!

  • Drain and cook the mushy rice

Step 1: Drain the excess water from the rice.

Step 2: Replace the rice pot (no lid!) On the stove and turn on low heat.

Step 3: Wait for the excess water to evaporate and the rice to dry.

Step 4: Turn off the heat but leave the pot in place for about a minute.

Step 5: Rice is ready to serve.

  • Use the salt method

A little salt can also save the day. It sounds a bit unusual, but just do the following:

Step 1: Pour table salt into a small bowl of dipping sauce.

Step 2: Put the salt bowl into the pan with the rice.

Step 3: Leave it there for about fifteen minutes and it will absorb all excess moisture.

  • Oven-dry the mushy rice

You will need the same equipment as for the previous method, and here’s how you do it:

Step 1: Again spread the rice evenly over the baking sheet lined with parchment.

Step 2: Put the rice in the oven and lighten it low.

Step 3: Monitor the process by opening the door from time to time and checking if the rice is dry.

Step 4: When you are sure the rice is dry enough, turn off the oven and let the rice sit for about a minute or so.

Step 5: Take the rice out of the oven and serve as usual.

Hard Rice

Before you do anything, let’s take a look at it. Does rice really burn? If it’s the black of the runway, throw it away, as the burnt rice really can’t be fixed. But if the rice doesn’t burn but smells and looks crunchy (like the photo above), then that’s really pretty cool.

Many cuisines around the world honor crispy rice: in Korean cooking, nurungji refers to elderberry or fried rice; socarrat is the crispy base of the Spanish mixed rice dish; tahdig is the golden crust at the bottom of Persian dumpling (in theory, not always rice). Use a wooden spoon to scrape them up in case there are some golden brown seeds on the bottom of your rice cooker. You can also pour in a small amount of hot water to loosen the rice. Enjoy these golden bites as a crisp contrast in your rice dish.

Maybe you cook on too high a heat, evaporating the water before the rice is fully cooked. You may have opened the lid too soon, causing the steam to escape. You probably didn’t add enough fluids to get started. Either way, if your rice looks dry, or the texture is still hard or crunchy once all of the liquid has been absorbed, add up to ½ cup of water and boil again with the lid turned on. Patience. Don’t increase the temperature to rinse the rice – it will get you back to where you started.

Crunchy Rice

If you have a microwave, you can use it to fix non-crispy rice. Follow these 6 steps:

  • Place the rice in a microwave safe bowl. I highly recommend buying this for all your warming needs.
  • Take a few paper towels and wet them completely.
  • Wring out nearly 20% moisture of the towel (not to the point of drying it).
  • Cover the rice bowl with a wet paper towel and microwave for a few minutes.
  • Once done, take the rice bowl out of the microwave and carefully remove the wet paper towels.
  • Now the rice will soften or no longer cook.

If the rice isn’t cooked yet, try again – until the rice is cooked. Since each microwave oven won’t last longer than a few minutes, you won’t run the risk of overcooking or burning the rice in the microwave.

How to Cook the Perfect Rice

How to cook the perfect rice

The first step in cooking delicious rice is knowing how much rice you want to cook. This amount of water determines how much water you will need to add as well as how long it will take to cook. In general, you add 2 cups of water for every cup of rice. However, note that the amount of water needed to add largely depends on the type of rice. Long grain rice usually needs more water than short grain rice.

Add water to your pot containing rice. Boil the pot without the lid on. When the water has almost evaporated and the rice is no longer visible, cover the pot and lower the heat to low. Leave it on for 15 minutes then you can remove the lid and stir the rice. Finally, cover and cook for another 5-10 minutes until finished. It is best to cook rice with a saucepan with a heavy bottom as this prevents the rice from burning at the bottom. A nice sealed lid will help keep the steam for effective cooking.

When cooking rice through the rice cooker, first check the appliance for instructions. Most of them recommend using one cup of rice with one cup of water. You may need to do some testing and adjustments to get the proportions right. The benefit of using rice cookers is that they actually do all the work for you. You won’t even need to think about cooking times and temperatures. To get delicious rice with a rice cooker, tinker and adjust the proportions based on experience.

How to Reheat Rice

If you’re heating up the rice on the stove, just put it in the pot. Cover the pot and let it simmer for 5 minutes until the rice is cooked. If you heat it up in the microwave, simply place it in a microwave-safe dish and cover it with a lid. For each cup of rice, cook for one minute on high. However, if it is frozen, cook on high heat for about 2 minutes per cup.


Cooking is never easy, even cooking rice is the same. Please always prepare yourself to handle any problems that may arise. Hopefully, through this article by KITCHENBAR, you already know how to fix undercooked rice like mushy rice, hard rice and crunchy rice expertly.

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