If You Don't Want Rice To Stick, Add Some Oil

Mushy, clumped-up rice is every rice lover's nightmare, and yet it is so easy to mess up the starchy staple. Rice is one of the few foods that doesn't always require extra ingredients to cook, but adding a little bit of oil goes a long way.

With as little as a tablespoon of oil, you can keep the tiny rice grains from clumping up. Fat creates a buffer between rice grains, preventing them from sticking together as they cook. As an added bonus, your rice will be more flavorful as long as you're using the right kind of oil. Sesame seed oil, avocado oil, olive oil, and even butter will do the trick. You might want to skip canola oil, sunflower oil, or corn oil since these oils don't impart scent.

Coconut oil can also be used while cooking rice, and apparently, it has amazing perks. According to Time, researchers at the College of Chemical Sciences in Sri Lanka found that adding a teaspoon of coconut oil to rice has "10 times the resistant starch as normally prepared rice and 10-15% fewer calories."

You can also toast rice in oil beforehand. By doing so, you allow for each grain to have a coating of oil before you even add water. As a result, the rice grains will be happy and won't unionize. You can also cut down the cooking time by toasting it until golden brown.

Some others ways to keep your rice grains from sticking

If adding oil to rice isn't really your jam, there are other ways to keep rice from sticking together. Some varieties of short-grain rice like arborio and carnaroli are stickier than long-grain varieties like basmati and jasmine rice, so you might want to ensure you are working with the right kind of rice to begin with.

A trusty way to ensure your rice doesn't stick is to wash it thoroughly. It might seem like a hassle if you are new to cooking rice, but this important first step removes the extra starch from the grains. Wash the rice thoroughly until the water runs clear. Soak the rice in water for about 30 minutes to soften up the grains to ensure it cooks thoroughly. Remember to use less water than you normally would for soaked rice to avoid overcooking it.

When it comes to cooking rice, it's best to let it rest rather than constantly stirring it. Stirring rice while it's cooking releases starch and makes rice sticky. After the rice is cooked, allow it to sit for up to 10 minutes so it absorbs all the steam and cooks thoroughly.