Can You Eat Undercooked Rice?

by Charlie
Can You Eat Undercooked Rice

You’ve probably heard friends say how nice they feel when eating undercooked or raw noodles. What about rice, will it be tasty? When looking for new tastes, you may try out cooking your food differently. Some will be harmful, while others will remain nutritious. 

Can you eat undercooked rice? Yes, you can eat undercooked rice. However, it has its share of problems. You may have to bear a stomach upset or suffer food poisoning. 

Perhaps it doesn’t sound like a good idea after all.

What Does Undercooked Rice Taste Like?

While undercooked rice doesn’t change appearance from the packed rice, it swells up a bit. Avoid using swelling as a determiner of cooked or undercooked rice because it can be misleading at times. 

What does undercooked rice taste like? When you scoop undercooked rice to taste, you will get a crunchy feeling on top of a flat or spicy taste, depending on how you cooked the rice. If you boiled it with salt, you might experience an almost unseasoned or foreign flavor. 

Unlike cooked rice, which is soft and you can effortlessly chew, undercooked rice is hard. Thus, giving you the crumbly feeling which requires some effort to grind. 

How Do You Tell Whether Rice Is Undercooked?

It is easy to tell whether some types of food are fully cooked by watching them. However, other dishes prove difficult to examine through observing. For instance, when you fry an egg, you can tell if it is cooked by observing, you are sure when to eat it.

How can you know if rice is undercooked? Undercooked rice lacks a fluffy and soft consistency. It is a bit hard and excessively chewy. 

In contrast, undercooked rice is too soft such that the rice grains may fall apart, making it mushy. It will have an evenness of mashed potatoes rather than that of typically cooked rice. 

How Do You Fix Undercooked Rice?

Over the years, we have used the microwave for numerous purposes. You can use it to reheat food, thaw out meals, and cook food. Can a microwave help you out in case you undercook rice? Let’s find out.

A microwave can help fix undercooked rice. First, place your undercooked rice in a microwavable bowl, then soak two paper towels with water. Squeeze 20% of the soaked water on your rice and use the towels to cover the bowl.

You should ensure the paper towels are soggy as you place them on the bowl. Microwave your rice for 2 minutes, then check to ensure it is no longer undercooked. The water on the rice and the paper towels provide steam that completes the cooking process. Hence, you get a fluffy and soft consistency. Such an easy way to fix undercooked rice!

What Can Happen After Eating Undercooked Rice?

While you may enjoy eating undercooked rice because it is crunchy, it can be harmful to your health. Different things may happen to you when you eat undercooked rice. They include:

  • Food Poisoning 

Taking undercooked rice increases your chance of getting food poisoning. Undercooked rice can accommodate harmful bacteria commonly found in soil called Bacillus Cereus (B Cereus). This bacteria contaminates and forms spores in your rice, enabling them to survive when you undercook your rice. 

However, when you cook rice properly, you expose this bacteria to high temperatures long enough, rendering it harmless. Some of the food poisoning symptoms you may experience include stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea around 15 to 30 minutes after consumption. 

  • Gastrointestinal Problems

Undercooked rice contains lectins, which are not friendly to your digestive system. While it is a type of protein, it is also used as a natural insecticide and reduces your ability to absorb nutrients. Human beings cannot digest lectins, so they pass through your digestive tract in their original state. 

Consequently, they damage your gut wall causing effects like vomiting and diarrhea. Usually, when you cook rice properly, the heat eliminates most of these lectins. Now you know why you’ve had stomach issues after consuming undercooked rice.

Why You May Crave Undercooked Rice

Have you ever seen an expectant lady who feasted on undercooked or raw rice often? If you have, you are probably wondering why they do so. Various reasons can cause you to crave and eat undercooked rice.

Why do you crave or eat undercooked rice? Pica may be one of the reasons. Pica is a condition where you yearn for non-nutritive food or substance. While it is uncommon, this condition occurs mostly in pregnant women and children. 

Insufficient vitamins and minerals can also cause such cravings. You should take a nutritious and well-balanced meal to prevent the craving. Also, increase your fruit and vegetable intake for better results.

Common Rice Cooking Mistakes You Should Avoid

Rice makes a great meal with numerous dishes. If you want to enjoy it and avoid the side effects of undercooked rice, you will need to watch out for these mistakes.

Mistake 1: Wrong Steaming 

Most people find themselves covering rice after cooking. After covering your cooked rice, you contain the steam, which continues the cooking process. It may overcook your rice; hence you might eat some mushed rice. 

Mistake 2: Stirring Rice

Have you been wondering why there is always a layer of starch on your pan that causes sticking and burning as you cook rice? The answer might be stirring your rice. If you want it to be fluffy and soft, let it cook. Don’t meddle with it. There are some exceptions, like the risotto, which requires stirring. For such, you can stir!

Mistake 3: Cooking on High Temperature

When you use high temperature for cooking your rice, you may get undercooked middle rice. You might have to do some intense cleaning or say goodbye to your pan. You may also have to bear a bowl of bad-tasting rice. To avoid these, cook your rice in moderate heat.

Final Thoughts

  • You can eat undercooked rice. However, you may have to deal with possible gastro intestinal issues.
  • Undercooked rice is crunchy and has an almost flat or foreign flavor. You will not like it if you are eating it for the first time.
  • When you eat undercooked rice, you can get side effects like food poisoning or gastrointestinal issues. You may experience symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps, and diarrhea.
  • To enjoy well-cooked rice, avoid mistakes such as stirring and high temperature as you cook and covering it after cooking.

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