Most common question asked, how much water does black rice need to cook, how long does it take? And if one would like to cook more batches of rice, how to scale? 

You may have a rice-to-water ratio that has been working out well for you, but here what we feel gives that ideal 'chewiness', not too hard, not moist either, first  when using a pot, then with a rice cooker.

All there is to know, is that most water is absorbed into the grains while a bit of water is evaporated, needs to escape, along the process.

Let's break both parts up here.

 First, absorption.

1 Cup of Rice


1 Cup of Water

Rice needs to absorb water in a 1:1 ratio.

Simple. If you double your batch of rice, double the volume of water. If you triple the rice, then triple the volume of water.

Second, evaporation.

Extra Water for Evaporation

While rice is being cooked some extra water evaporates, so you have to compensate this loss by adding 'some extra' water at start.

Note that this extra water has nothing to do with the amount of rice you want to cook, but solely depends on your cooking equipment. 

To find out the exact volume needed for evaporation, cook first 1 cup of rice with 1 cup of water. Taste and most likely you will find the texture is still a bit hard and some extra water is needed.

Add ¼ cup water

Do so by adding ¼ cup of water and simmer (covered) until all this water is gone. Taste again and repeat until you got the texture that works for you. You end up probably somewhere between ¼ (harder texture) to ¾ (softer, more moist) of a cup.  This is and will remain the same volume, ALWAYS, regardless how many batches of rice you decide to cook next time. 




Ratio    :

1 Cup of Rice



1 Cup of Water

Extra Water for Evaporation

For example at our home, when we want to cook 3 batches of rice - with our equipment we know our evaporation water volume is ¼ cup - we got to go with 3 + ¼ cup of water.

Then, two more things.

First, once cooked, don't keep the rice at room temperature for too long, either hold the rice warm (a rice cooker offers this functionality) or refrigerate/freeze. Also, reheat overnight leftovers.


And second, the plant pigment that colors grains and fruits black-purplish, anthocyanin, is WATER-SOLVABLE, therefore anthocyanin dissolves in water. It's simple as that. Even soaking rice overnight will result in a loss of up to 15% of anthocyanin content. The more water you use, the more anthocyanin will mix with water.

Cooking Instructions and Time

With a Pot

Rinse Heirloom Black Rice or Black Jasmine Rice

Bring rice and water to a boil for 5 minutes (use the same cup to measure water volume; for ratios see above). Cover and simmer (medium-low heat) for 25 minutes.

Fluff the rice and simmer for another 5 minutes. 

Turn off the heat, keep covered and let the rice stand for 15 minutes so the grains can firm up. 

Keep covered with lid both while simmering as at the end when you have the rice sit. And - this we can't stress enough - get a heavy-bottom pot to avoid the rice to burn or stick.

In a Rice Cooker

We have been asked what's better: a rice  cooker or a pot? We feel rice is tastier when using a pot, but a simple rice cooker works just fine, and that's what we - and most people in Thailand - use most of the time. It's so easy, just follow your rice cooker's rice-to-water ratio recommendation and once ready, the rice cooker will shut itself off while the rice is kept warm!

Nevertheless, you can determine the amount of evaporation water the same way as we did above. You will end up with a bit more evaporation water though. At home we always do a rice-to-water-ratio of 1:1 + ¾ .

We are not used to pressure cookers, but same goes for this cooking method . Build up the necessary water volume as you would do with a pan. However, one additional element to consider: select the pressure you feel comfortable with and time the interval, from the moment the pressure cooker is finished until you open the lid (evaporation is still doing its part!) We recommend a 10 minutes interval.

Rebirth Rice Co., Ltd.
113/14 Moo 10
Suthep Muaeng
Chiang Mai 50200
Rebirth Rice LLC
1425 Broadway STE 20334
Seattle WA 98122