Soft and Sticky Calrose Rice Has a Cult Following
This story is part of our Rice-o-pedia, a cook’s guide to a dozen of the most commonly used types of rice. Click here for the full guide.
The new kid on the rice block, Calrose is not as widely known as basmati or brown rice, but it’s still prized for its soft, sticky texture. Once you try Calrose for yourself you’ll want to know every way to cook and eat it. Here’s what you need to know, all in one place.
What Is Calrose Rice?
Calrose rice is a medium-grain white rice grown in California (hence the “Cal” at the beginning of its name). A relative newcomer to the rice world, it was first released in 1948. These days Calrose accounts for 85% of the state’s rice production. It’s very mild, so it pairs well with pretty much any other flavors. When it’s cooked, Calrose rice is soft and somewhat sticky, making it a good option for a side dish, stir-fries, or making sushi.
How Should You Cook Calrose Rice?
Stovetop? Oven? A countertop appliance? No matter how you cook Calrose rice, we have the best method.
How to Cook Calrose Rice on the Stove
Measure 1 cup Calrose rice into a fine-mesh strainer, and rinse under cool running water until the water runs clear. In a small saucepan, combine the rinsed rice, 1 1/3 cups water, and salt to taste; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat to low, and simmer until the water is absorbed, about 20 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and let stand, covered, for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork before serving.
How to Cook Calrose Rice in an Instant Pot
Measure 1 cup Calrose rice into a fine-mesh strainer. Rinse under cool running water until the water runs clear. Combine the drained rice, 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon water, and salt to taste in the pot. Lock the lid in place and set to cook under High pressure for 6 minutes. Allow the pressure to fully naturally release (about 10 minutes). Fluff with a fork before serving.
How to Cook Calrose Rice in a Rice Cooker
First, always check your manual to see if it offers specific instructions for Calrose rice. Measure the rice with the cup that came with your rice cooker, then rinse it in a fine-mesh strainer. Add the rinsed, drained rice to the pot, then add salt to taste and water to the level indicated for white rice (rice cookers should have markings inside the pot). If you don’t have a rice cooker cup or markings inside the pot, try a ratio of 1 cup rice to 1 1/4 cups water. Set to cook using the white rice mode. Let the rice stand in the closed cooker for 10 to 30 minutes after cooking. Fluff with a fork before serving.
How to Bake Calrose Rice in the Oven
Preheat the oven to 375°F with the rack in middle of the oven. Measure 1 cup Calrose rice into a fine-mesh strainer, and rinse under cool running water until the water runs clear. Combine the rinsed rice and salt to taste in a 2-quart baking dish. Bring 1 1/2 cups water to a boil in a small saucepan or tea kettle. Pour the boiling water over the rice, stir, and spread the rice in an even layer. Cover the dish tightly with foil and bake for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and let the dish rest, covered, for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork before serving.
How to Cook Calrose Rice in a Slow Cooker
We don’t recommend cooking Calrose rice in a slow cooker; it has a relatively short cooking time and gets gummy quickly in the low-and-slow heat of the slow cooker.
How to Store Calrose Rice
Store uncooked Calrose rice in your pantry, either in its original packaging or in an airtight container, such as a Mason jar or tightly lidded plastic container.
How Long Does Calrose Rice Last?
- Uncooked Calrose rice will keep almost indefinitely in your pantry when stored in the proper container (see above).
- Cooked Calrose rice will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 to 5 days. Or portion it out and freeze it in a freezer bag or freezer-safe container for up to 6 months.
Our Favorite Calrose Rice Recipes
Calrose rice’s soft, sticky texture is great in recipes like these.