Should Rice Be Washed Before Cooking? The Myths & Truths


Many people have had this questions on their mind for a very long time. I have even seen some arguments about it among my male friends who try to know if it makes sense to wash or rinse rice before cooking. Those that wash rice prior to cooking try to explain that it is the right thing to do while those that don’t think it does not make sense but they have all been lazy to do a Google search on it at least to see what experts are saying. We are going to address this topic in this post today to make things clear to us.

So, Is It Necessary To Wash Rice Before You Cook It?

This is not a straightforward questions, so I would answer YES and NO. You ask why? Often, we only do things because that is the way it has always been done and do not bother to ask, “why?” Such is the case with the issue of rinsing of rice in water before we cook. Some people even soak or parboil the rice and change the water after some minutes of cooking – like we recommended you do with beans if you don’t want it to make you fart after eating.

washing rice before cooking
Photo: blog.umamimart.com

To explain my YES to prior washing of rice...

Rinsing rice has been done for ages to rid the grains of surface starches, prevents clumping, and yields a clean, fresh taste. If you rinse rice very well, the cooked rice will have a reduced likelihood of clumping together because you have removed some of the total starch present (surface starch).

Some types of rice from some parts of the world are processed with talc -a mineral made up of hydrated magnesium silicate in order to give it a whiter and cleaner appearance. These types of rice need a rinse to remove this talc. Sometimes when rice has been packed and stored for long, you see some kind of dust on their surface when you take them out, washing will get rid of dusts like these and sometimes few weevils in the rice.

To explain my NO, which also answers “if you wash nutrients away when you wash rice”…see page 2 (click 2 below).

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Ahmed Ogundimu
Ahmed is a Food Scientist/Technologist first of all. A Seasoned Blogger, Astute Marketer, Food Enthusiast and Manchester United Lover. I read anything and everything available so I know so many useful and useless things.

15 Comments

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  1. I’d say if your rice is a GM rice, wherein the nutrients enriched in it had been done genetically, then washing or parboiling it won’t take out the nutrients but if its the kind of enrichment that’s done by coating the rice with vitamins, then you are certainly washing off the nutrients if you wash.
    However, if you bought your rice in an open market where the bag of rice had been open by the seller and some portion was sold to you, then I suggest you wash and enrich it by eating your rice with vegetables and other nutrients sources

  2. This is so interesting! It’s more of a sch than u think. Tnks for enlightening most of us on sm things we never thought of. Blz u

    1. Thanks for that contribution. Like I said in the concluding part of the article too – I was my rice because I don’t know if the dust on it is due to fortification or dirt. This picture is amazing.

    1. I prefer unwashed Rich because it has Taste and smells well here in Uganda. Therefore i think for hygienic purposes i think the farmers should harvest the rich clean for some of us to keep enjoying.

  3. It is very interesting explaination of the rice uses, but as a person I have question,#
    how would people know the differences of the rice from other parts of the country that contain nutrients which is not to be wash and the rice
    that has talc which you mentioned as it makes rice whiter and it is supposed to be wash away?, #because a buyer can just go and buy rice without knowing whether it is a rice that has nutrient or rice that have talc and if the cook wash it then it might be a rice contain nutrient and if not wash then it could be the rice that contain talc , #as an experts what do you think could makes differences?

  4. I do wash my rice very well befor I cook it If H didnt wash it I will cook it for the first time and race the water then cook it again I love that

  5. I do wash my rice very well befor I cook it If I didnt wash it for the first time. I will cook it for the first time and race the water then cook it again I love that

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