When eBay had one of their 10% eBay Bucks deals, I pulled the trigger on purchasing a Tatung TAC-03DW Multi-Function Cooker, also available for about the same price on Amazon. You can also get the lower priced Tatung TAC-3A-SF, but I was picky about its looks. I was looking primarily for a small rice cooker that used stainless steel inside rather than using a non-stick coating that peels. You can see my post about my hunt here. Here is a quick unboxing and review.
The box includes a stainless steel pot, steamer, divider bowl, cover, silicone hot pad, rice measuring cup, and rice paddle.
The lid is heavy and isn’t “locked” into place by a mechanical lock. The underside is stainless steel and there are holes for steam to exit. The simplicity of the design makes it very easy to keep clean as you can easily wash the top and rice bowl. The main bowl requires a little more care in cleaning, but there are no nooks and crannies to worry about.
In order to make rice, you use the rice cup and measure between 1-3 cups and then I generally put in 1.5 times the amount of water in as well. Water is poured in between the rice pot and the main pot, cooking the rice in an indirect method.
The top is just placed on and the Cook button is pushed. The top can be locked into place by the handle, but it isn’t a strong lock, so no swinging the rice cooker around while it cooks :).
The rice is cooked utilizing the both the steam generated by the water between the main pot and the rice pot and the even heat generated by the boiling water surrounding the inner pot. This method seems to avoid starchy overboiling of the rice and the top stayed on firmly with none of the water boiling up and even touching the lid. The cooker turns off automatically when the amount of water is low in the main pot.
The rice generated by the Tatung TAC-03DW was fluffy and not too wet. Wait about 5 minutes and the rice will release from the stainless steel rice bowl, making it easier to clean. This rice cooker made enough rice for my two kids who don’t eat full bowls of rice and myself. It probably wouldn’t make enough for four grown ups who eat full bowls of rice (Chinese rice bowls).
Over the last week I have used this rice cooker for other things than just making rice. I steamed some artichokes, chicken, and broccoli and I think it can act as a dim sum type steamer too. I like that I don’t have to worry about the water running out and burning the pot when I steam something. So far I really like it, it is a solid addition to my kitchen, doesn’t take up too much space, and saves me from using my one small pot.
You can see from the comparison photo how the size stacks up against my 6 quart Instant Pot Rice Cooker/Pressure Cooker. I think the Tatung makes better rice than the Instant Pot – it doesn’t dry out , burn or get crunchy on the bottom.