Twitter Is Arguing Over Whether Or Not You Should Wash Your Rice

Actress, model, best-selling author, and "Top Chef" host Padma Lakshmi can add one more title to her long and impressive resume: Twitter pot-stirrer. The Bravo host recently sparked some heated debate among her Twitter followers after retweeting a humorous TikTok video about whether people should or shouldn't wash their rice before cooking it. "Do you wash your rice??" Lakshmi asked her fellow Twitter users, and many of them were not shy about chiming in with their take.

According to The Kitchn, rinsing rice before cooking is a good practice because it helps remove the surface layer of starch on the grain. It if is not washed off, the excess starch can leave the rice with an unpleasant, gummy texture, so a thorough rinsing can help ensure the finished cooked product is light and fluffy, not gross and clumpy. Regardless, some Twitter users admitted they still didn't take the time to rinse their rice. "Honestly I don't. I don't want to waste the water," one user explained, adding, "If I am making traditional sushi rice sometimes I will. I have never noticed any issues or it being over starchy. I don't buy giant sacks of rice though maybe that's why it works." Another user replied that there was "no need" to wash their rice now, only "years ago when rice had dirt and things ... Not today's modern packaged rice."

Most people agreed rice should be rinsed before cooking

While washing rice might help improve the meal's texture, rinsing the food does have some downsides. According to NPR, rinsing rise does reduce the levels of some important nutrients, including folate, iron, niacin, and thiamin by a significant "50 to 70 percent," so some cooks might be justified in skipping this step. While there are some mistakes everyone makes when cooking rice, it seems that the bulk of Padma Lakshmi's Twitter followers were solidly on the side of washing the food item. "I'm not the kind of person to disobey what my mom, grandma, and aunts told me to do. With that said, I wash my rice until the water is colorless," one fan replied. Another user warned "Warehouses often have mice, which not only eat rice, but pee on the sacks. Always wash the rice well. Always."

A few other users pointed out there were additional benefits to washing the rice since the leftover water could also be quite useful. "In India we used that water to starch our cotton sarees. But that kanji water is rich in nutrients and can be consumed," a Twitter user wrote, while another suggested, "Of course you wash the rice then you save the water let it ferment & make your way into poreless skin and strong hair."