Top 15 Best Electric Food Steamers in 2020

Food steamers have become an indispensable part of the kitchen, as more people opt for healthier cooking methodsTop 15 Best Electric Food Steamers in 2018 over fried and greasy foods. Steaming is effective and produces great results, because food retains its nutrients and flavours, without the need for extra oil. The most common type of steamer is the traditional stovetop, but this is gradually being swapped out for the convenience of electric types, many of which come with multiple functions.

Here, we will look at the usage and types of electric food steamers, its benefits as well as key features to look out for. We have also written complete guides about best food dehydrators and best food saver machines to change your cooking experience more than you can imagine!

Key Benefits and advantages of electric food steamers

While conventional stove top steamers do an adequate job, they come with limitations, the most obvious being that users will have to keep an eye on the stove and manually adjust cooking times. This kind of steamer does not usually come with separate compartments for preparing different ingredients.

Electric food steamers, on the other hand, are equipped with timers – so food can be left cooking while you busy yourself with other kitchen work. Some have ‘smart’ features to optimise cooking time for protein, greens or seafood. Their versatility allows for many different kinds of food to be made, such as stews and soups, and some even double as rice cookers or food warmers. Electric types usually feature multiple compartments so that users can prepare a few different items simultaneously.

Types of Electric Food Steamer

  • Multi-tiered/stackable – Perhaps the most common type of electric steamer on the market, this design featuresTop 15 Best Electric Food Steamers in 2018 several tiers that can be stacked on top of each other. The minimum is usually two, and the maximum is three ‘layers’, allowing for up to three dishes to be prepared simultaneously. However, cross contamination of flavours and smells is common, since the condensation drips from the top to the bottom tray. Also, since the bottom has more contact with steam, it tends to cook faster than other tiers.
  • Single tier – No stacking, but usually features a large surface to accommodate items such as whole fish or poultry. This design may include separate compartments to cook different ingredients on the same layer.
  • Multi-functional – Some models can be used beyond steaming, and have pre programmed settings for keeping food warm, simmering or making stews and soups.

Key Features of High Quality Electric Food Steamers

  • Capacity – Depending on your usage, you might want to go for a steamer with a large capacity. Tiered types can accommodate a lot of food, making it suitable for big families or hosting guests, while single tiered types or steamer-rice cooker designs are handy for those living alone.
  • Power – To save on time and hassle, go for steamers that are able to produce steam within a short amount ofTop 15 Best Electric Food Steamers in 2018 time upon switching on.
  • Versatility – A good electric steamer should not only steam well, but also be multifunctional. Aside from steaming conventional produce such as vegetables and protein, a handy steamer may also be able to make rice, porridge, cakes, stew and more for a convenient all-in-one cooking process.
  • Controls – The steamer should have easy to use controls and display. Pre-programmed settings, optimised for different ingredients, can ensure the best results every time. For manual adjustments, digital displays should be clear, while dial timers should not be too sensitive to touch.
  • Water indicator/external spout – Monitoring water levels are crucial in any steaming process. A good steamer should not only have an external indicator to let you know how much water is left, but also a spout to add water when the reservoir runs low.
  • Safety – Safety features such as auto switch off when the reservoir is dry, or cool touch handles on the steaming baskets, will ensure that no untoward accidents occur.
  • Design – Well-designed steamers should have no run off or leakage, and the condensation from steaming should not mix into the reservoir. Meanwhile, nested baskets save space and can be stored easily when not in use.

Top 15 Best Electric Food Steamers in 2020 – Chart

Picture
Name
Features
Price
Rating
Picture
Name
Feature
Price
Rating
1. Oster 5712 Electronic 2-Tier 6.1 Quart Food Steamer
3.8-quart and 2.3-quart steaming bowl $$ 4.8
2. T-fal VC1338 Balanced Electric Food Steamer, 4-Quart, Black
1-year limited warranty $$$ 4.8
3. Breville BFS800BSS Food Steamer
Sync on or off $$$ 4.7
4. Nutri Ninja Auto-iQ Blender (BL482)
Powerful 1000-Watts $$ 4.6
5. Aicok Electric Food Steamer
Up to 9.5 quart capacity $$$ 4.6
6. Hamilton Beach Digital Steamer
2-tier steaming $$ 4.5
7. KLARSTEIN Food Steamer
1500 W power. Total of 1.9 qt $$ 4.5
8. Kalorik Food Steamer
11.25 in. L x 7.5 in. W x 9.5 in. H ( 3.9 lbs. ) $$ 4.5
9. Aroma Professional Rice Cooker &amp Food Steamer (ARC-6106)
15- hour Delay Timer $$ 4.4
10. Oster CKSTSTMD5-W 5-Quart Food Steamer
Automatic 60-minute timer $$ 4.3
11. Aroma Housewares Professional Digital Rice Cooker and Food Steamer
Includes Steam Tray, Rice Measuring Cup $$ 4.2
12. BELLA BLA13872 7.Housewares 4 Quart Healthy Food Steamer
2 basket cooking system $$ 4.1
13. Rosewill Electric Food Steamer RHST-15001
3-tier stackable BPA-free transparent baskets $$ 4.0
14. Aroma Housewares ARC-914SBD Digital Cool-Touch Rice Cooker and Food Steamer
15-hour Delay Timer $$ 4.0
15. Aroma Housewares Rice Cooker and Food Steamer (ARC-743-1NG)

Full-view tempered glass lid

$$ 3.9

 

1. Oster 5712 Electronic 2-Tier 6.1 Quart Food Steamer

Healthy and delicious meals are just a few steps away with the Oster 5712, a convenient and easy-to-use electric foodOster 5712 Electronic 2-Tier 6.1 Quart Food Steamer steamer. Comprising two tiers with a total capacity of 6.1 quarts, the steamer can be used to prepare a complete meal, from rice to fish, poultry, vegetables and more. The steamer comes with two transparent steaming bowls which can be stacked on top of each other, allowing for two different foods to be cooked simultaneously. The top bowl, which has a large capacity of 3.8 quarts, has nooks to make up to eight soft or hard boiled eggs at a time, while the bottom can hold 2.3 quarts of food. To make rice, simply pop the included 10-cup-capacity rice bowl into the lower steaming bowl and cover with the lid.

Power and Controls

No more waiting for your utensils to fire up: the Oster has an instant-steam function, which heats up water in the reservoir quickly to generate steam. This is done using a powerful 900-watt heating element that can reach up to 212 degrees Fahrenheit. The control panel features an LCD display to indicate the time, as well as lights that turn red when in cooking mode or green when food is done and being kept warm, in addition to emitting an audible beep signal.Keep tabs on the water level with an exterior indicator, but fret not if you’ve forgotten, as the steamer will sound an alarm and automatically switch itself off once water levels are too low to complete its cycle.

However, there are several things that can be improved with the Oster’s controls, such as the time settings, as the steamer does not allow users to set it to cook below five minutes. Its maximum time is 95 minutes. The automatic keep-warm mode can be a blessing or a hassle, as the food continues to steam and can become overcooked if you forget to switch the machine off. Another grouse with the Oster is the LCD display, which is dark grey and does not light up, making it difficult to read.

Design

Measuring 10 x 10.8 x 14.4 inches, the Oster is moderately sized and should be able to fit two whole corn cobs in its bowls. The trays are fully collapsible for easy cleaning and storage. While the bowls come with integrated handles for a secure grip, the bottom drip tray, which collects liquid and condensation, does not. This makes it difficult to remove right after the cooking process. Most of the parts are dishwasher safe and made from BPA-free plastic.

A major design flaw of the Oster is the water fill spout at the front corner of the unit, which supposedly allows users to fill in the water reservoir once it runs low on water. However, the funnel is extremely small and prone to overflowing. As the water reservoir itself cannot be taken apart and fully drained, there is also no way to guard against mold.

Additional Features

The Oster comes with a one-year warranty for manufacturing defects.

Pros

  • Convenient, easy to use
  • External water level indicator
  • Auto off safety feature
  • Instant steam function
  • Two tier for steaming different foods
  • Keep-warm mode
  • Indicator lights

Cons

  • Poorly designed water funnel
  • Reservoir cannot be thoroughly cleaned

2. T-fal VC1338 Balanced Living Compact 2-Tier Electric Food Steamer

Compact and inexpensive, the T-Fal is perfect for those living alone or couples on a tight budget, who still want toT-fal VC1338 Balanced Living Compact 2-Tier Electric Food Steamer enjoy healthy, fat-free cooking. Its two-tiered design has a four quart capacity, with each of the tiers able to hold two quarts of food. Prepare a meal for two complete with fish, chickens and vegetables, or remove the plate in between the stackable tiers to accommodate larger ingredients. Separation among the tiers is excellent; for example, vegetables steamed on top of fish retains its natural taste, with no crossover of flavours.

However, its versatility aside from greens and poultry is limited, as there is no cup for steaming rice. It also fares poorly with tortillas or bread which become very wet from the large amount of vapour produced by the machine.

Power and Controls

The T-Fal works as advertised and operates through digital controls, specifically a 60-minute timer button that can be adjusted up or down through buttons. The reservoir is transparent and can be monitored from the outside, even though there is no funnel to add water during the cooking process. Owing to its small size, the unit has a smaller water reservoir and produces less steam, so food takes a longer time to cook. The front of the steamer lists recommended cooking times for different ingredients, but some experimentation might be needed to achieve best results.

Design

Built for easy storage, the T-Fal is compact at 15 x 13.5 x 14.2 inches, lightweight and should easily fit on a countertops or overhead cupboards. In spite of its small size, the build is sturdy and made from BPA-free plastic. The oval rather than round shape of its simplistic but attractive design contributes to its space-saving feature, but the unit is still large enough to lay a whole fish fillet without having to section it into smaller parts. The steaming bowls are dishwasher safe and easy to clean.

Additional Features

The T-Fal comes with a one-year limited warranty for manufacturing defects.

Pros

  • Compact, space saving
  • Good separation of flavours
  • Easy to use
  • 60-minute timer
  • Sturdy build
  • Attractive look

Cons

  • Limited use, no bowl for steaming rice
  • Slow steaming

3.Breville BFS800BSS Food Steamer

With an extra large steaming tray that measures 16 inches, the Breville fulfils a household’s steaming needs withBreville BFS800BSS Food Steamer exceptional efficiency. Steam everything from whole fish and chicken to  large cuts of meat and seasonal vegetables, or sort the ingredients into smaller, more manageable portions with two seven-inch steaming baskets, which can then be placed into separate cooking zones. The steamer can even accommodate bamboo baskets for making Asian-style cuisine such as dimsum and dumplings.

Power and Controls

Boasting an impressive 1,800 watts of power and Rapid Start technology, the Breville can reach its maximum steaming power in less than 30 seconds. The machine’s design and controls allow for plenty of customisation. Choose from five steam-level modes, including high, low, high keep warm, low keep warm and keep warm. As different ingredients tend to require different cooking times and power, the usual practice is to first steam items that need longer cooking, before stacking the other on top. With the Breville, however, the smart Sync-Finish function allows for independent steam zones to finish cooking at the same time, saving you time and hassle. The steamer also comes with an automatic keep warm setting for up to 45 minutes, to ensure food is ready to be served at anytime.

Design

Rather than stackable tiers, the Breville sports a flat, horizontal design. The streamlined oval shape is especially great for steaming whole fish. Despite the single layer, there is no flavour cross contamination, and because the surface is closer to the water reservoir, the food has better contact with the steam, delivering a more even cooking temperature throughout. The body is made of stainless steel, as are the steaming baskets which come equipped with tough glass lids. The only minor flaw with this design is that it does not have a funnel for adding water, and water levels cannot be monitored externally.

Additional Features

The steamer comes with a one-year warranty for manufacturing defects.

Pros

  • Large steaming surface area
  • Single tier delivers even cooking
  • Stainless steel
  • Sturdy build
  • Smart syncing
  • Various modes
  • No flavour crossing

Cons

  • No funnel to add water
  • Water levels cannot be monitored externally

4. Cuisinart STM-1000 CookFresh Digital Glass Steamer

Make steamed dishes for the entire family with the STM-1000 CookFresh steamer by Cuisinart, a trusted brandCuisinart STM-1000 CookFresh Digital Glass Steamer around the world that is well known for its quality cookware. The glass pot has a capacity of 5 litres, which is plenty of space for vegetables, poultry, fish, seafood and even rice. It can also double as a serving dish right off the steamer, while leftovers can be stored in pot and popped in the fridge. Ingredients can either be steamed directly in the pot, or placed on an included steaming tray. Unfortunately the CookFresh does not come with separate bowls or individual compartments for steaming different items. While two different items can still be placed together in the steamer, its single tray design with no separators means that there will be some degree of flavour contamination. We also noticed that food cooks best at 80% of the pot’s capacity, rather than at full.

Power and Controls

Clocking in with 1,875 watts of power, the CookFresh is is a powerful and efficient unit that rarely takes more than 30 minutes to steam dishes. Unlike traditional steamers, it uses a unique Steam Tower technology that channels the steam from top to bottom, to create even and thorough results. There are six convenient pre-programmed food settings, one each for poultry, seafood, grains and vegetables, as well as a manual and ‘keep warm’ option

The 60-minute timer can be adjusted with a dial, but users have complained that the dial is inaccurate and overly sensitive, so a more user-friendly ‘button’ timer would be a good idea for future improvements. Meanwhile, the control panel houses an easy to view LCD display, start and stop buttons, as well as pause and reheat buttons. The reheat option is especially convenient so that food is served at optimum temperature without being overcooked. To alert users when the food is done, an audible alert will sound.

Design

Many electric food steamers don’t allow for the water reservoir to be removed, making it difficult to drain the unit entirely, which may encourage the growth of mold and bacteria. The CookFresh, however, has a 1L removable clear plastic water tank, located on the side rather than underneath the steaming tray. This position makes it easy to add water separately while cooking. On the other hand, those concerned with odours and chemicals will like that the 5L steaming pot is made entirely of glass, so at no point in the cooking process will food come into contact with plastic. It also maintains the food’s natural taste, as there are no plastic odours or residues to influence the flavours of the food.

The stainless steel steaming tray at the bottom can be used in two positions, depending on what ingredients you are using the steamer for. However, the design can be improved as the edges of the tray are straight and sharp, and can pose a hazard for cuts. All of the above components are dishwasher friendly and easy to clean.
The flipside of the steamer’s large capacity is its overall size . At 13.7 x 13.2 x 9.4 inches, the unit is bulky and does not lend well to storing. It is also heavy and takes up a large amount of counter space.

Additional Features

The steamer comes with a three-year limited warranty for the US and Canada only.

Pros

  • Convenient preset modes
  • Large capacity
  • Timer function
  • Beep alert
  • Multifunctional glass pot
  • Removable water reservoir

Cons

  • Sensitive dial
  • No compartments or separate steaming baskets
  • Bulky, difficult to store
  • Sharp edges on steaming tray

5. Aicok Electric Food Steamer

The Aicok electric steamer offers not one or two but three tiers, with a total capacity of 9.5 quarts (3 litres) – plenty ofAicok Electric Food Steamer room for meat, vegetables, eggs, dumplings, cakes and more. The baskets have a nested design that gets progressively larger from the bottom to the top, and each layer features nooks to place up to six eggs in a vertical position. Also included is a smaller rice up that can be fitted into one of the baskets to cook grains. The tiers are stackable, and can be used singularly to warm small amounts of food.

Power and Controls

Sporting a powerful 800W heating element, the Aicok heats up quickly and comes with a dial timer that goes up to 60 minutes. Once cooking is done or when there is not enough water in the base reservoir, the device sounds an alarm bell and automatically switches off. Food can turn cold quickly due to steam escaping from the outlets, since there is no keep warm function. To monitor water levels, keep an eye on the external water level indicator, and refill the reservoir through a small spout at the side, without having to remove the steaming baskets.

Design

Like many steamers with a large number of stackable tiers, the Aicok suffers from uneven cooking. The bottom, which is closest in contact with steam, cooks ingredients faster than items placed in the top tiers, so food that takes a long time to cook should be placed at the bottom. The reason for this is because the bottom tier is the only one that fits snugly onto the base, as the two other tiers are larger in size. If vegetables are placed on the bottom, for example, they will end up soggy and overcooked before the rest of the tiers are done.

Another design flaw of the Aicok is that juices from the top tend to drip down onto the bottom, creating a cross contamination of flavours. The condensation from the food, however, drips down into a bottom black plate filter, which separates the water from the reservoir and keeps it clean. Like many other electric steamer designs, the reservoir is welded shut and can only be drained from a small opening, so it cannot be thoroughly cleaned.

For peace of mind, the baskets are made from BPA-free plastic that are highly resistant to chemicals and can withstand temperatures of up to 284 degrees Fahrenheit. The material is dishwasher safe, and the nested design is great for storage.

Additional Features

The Aicok comes with a two-year warranty against manufacturing defects.

Pros

  • Large capacity
  • Versatile
  • Convenient nooks for eggs
  • External water level indicator, spout for adding water
  • Dishwasher friendly
  • Timer dial

Cons

  • Uneven cooking
  • Poor separation of flavours, liquid drips from top to bottom
  • No keep warm option
  • Does not drain completely

6.Hamilton Beach Digital Steamer

Canned, processed meals will quickly lose their appeal once you’ve gotten a Hamilton Beach steamer – a handy unitHamilton Beach Digital Steamer that cooks up healthy, colourful and nutrient-rich foods, minus the added oil and grease. Designed for versatility, its two-tiered system allows users to prepare a whole meal in one easy-to-use appliance, be it steamed seafood, chicken breasts, vegetables or more. Each basket holds roughly two quarts, and the divider separating the tiers can be removed to accommodate larger items such as a standing corn on the cob or a whole head of broccoli. Also included is a smaller cup for steaming grains. Portions are just right for a family of two to four persons.

Power and Controls

The Hamilton is powered by a 650 Watt heating element. While it produces adequate steam, it might take a longer cooking time than more powerful steamers. A convenient feature of the steamer is its delay time button, which can be set up to 24 hours in advance, so you can fill the machine up with ingredients and start steaming later. The electronic timer gives users the freedom to complete other tasks while the food steams, and lets you know when it’s done with a beep. It also automatically switches to keep warm mode for an hour before turning off.

Although the unit comes with a digital water level indicator, its purpose is redundant, as there is no way to add water through a spout should the water run out. To avoid this, always fill the reservoir to its full 1-quart capacity.

Design

The overall design of the steamer needs some improvement, especially the divider separating the two tiers as it collapses easily, even when unintended. A common point of contention among users of multi-tiered steamers is the differing cooking times, and the Hamilton is no exception. To ensure even cooking, place food that requires longer steaming time closer to the base, or add the top bowl filled with food that has shorter steaming times halfway through the steaming process. Users should note that while the bowls, drip tray and removable collar are dishwasher safe, the plastic material is not BPA-free and feels rather flimsy so care should be taken when handling them.

Additional Features

The product comes with a limited one-year warranty.

Pros

  • Delay time button
  • Timer
  • Keep warm mode

Cons

  • Slow to heat up
  • No external water fill spout
  • Divider collapses easily
  • Flimsy material

7. KLARSTEIN Food Steamer

The Klarstein is a basic but handy steamer to have in the kitchen, especially for small households, couples, orKLARSTEIN Food Steamer individuals who live alone. The unit is made up of three sections: one large compartment at the back and two small ones at the front, for a total capacity of 1.9 quarts (two litres). The separate compartments allow users to cook up to three different dishes simultaneously, such as vegetables, chicken and rice, for a healthy and well-balanced meal.

Power and Controls

The steamer runs on 1,500 watts of power and heats up quickly. For convenience, there are seven preset programmes, including an optimised setting for vegetables, fish, poultry, eggs and grains. The side-by-side arrangement of the steaming bowls ensures fast heating and accelerates the cooking process in an energy-efficient manner, while its keep warm function lasts for up to 40 minutes. Users can monitor the water levels via a digital reading on the front of the machine.

The downside of the steamer, however, is its lack of control when it comes to regulating cooking times for different produce. Cooking for all three compartments starts at the same time, but when the timer for one finishes, the others continue to cook while the former goes into warming mode. If one is making vegetables or potatoes, this will end up being overcooked or soggy. The way to avoid this would be to reset the timers for the remaining food compartments, but users will have to do this separately up to three times, which can be a hassle.

Design

Despite its somewhat smaller capacity compared to models like the Oster, the Klarstein is quite chunky at 13.8 x 13.4 x 10.7 inches, and will take up considerable space in the cabinet or on the countertop. The bowls do not have a nested design and have to be stored separately.

The good thing about the unit is that there is an external refill shaft that folds out, so water can be added during steaming without having to remove the top panel. The steaming bowls are made of plastic, but the bottom is made of stainless steel and very sturdy. It comes in a modern and chic-looking silver hue.

Additional Features

None

Pros

  • Three compartments, versatile
  • Timer
  • Keep warm function
  • Preset programmes
  • External refill shaft
  • Sturdy build

Cons

  • Small capacity but bulky design
  • Lack of controls to regulate timer of different compartments

8.  Kalorik Food Steamer

An inexpensive solution to wholesome, home-cooked meals, the Kalorik multi-tiered steamer provides a healthier,Kalorik Food Steamer easier way to prepare various foods. It’s generous nine quart capacity is enough to feed the whole family, and saves time from having to use different cooking appliances to make separate dishes. The transparent, stackable tiers allow for up to three different items to be prepared simultaneously, such as seafood, chicken and vegetables, and it also comes with a smaller rice cup for cooking grains. The machine accommodates three to six lobsters in one go, although larger items like whole cabbage heads need to be cut into half.

Power and Controls

Boasting 800 watts of power, the Kalorik is equipped with a Turbo Steam function for easy and fast cooking, heating the unit up within seconds. Although it lacks a digital display or indicator, water levels can be monitored thanks to the slightly translucent shade of the reservoir. When water runs low, simply add more through two small water spouts at each end, without disrupting the steaming process.

The Kalorik lacks preset programmes, but the timer can be adjusted up to 60 minutes using a simple dial. However, this means that longer cooking items should be placed at the bottom, and faster cooking ones on top, to avoid overcooking. The unit automatically turns off once the timer is done.

Design

The Kalorik has a basic design common to vertical-tiered steamers, with a smaller steaming basket on the bottom that gradually tapers up. It measures 11.25 x 7.5 x 9.5 inches and weighs 3.9 lbs.

The holes on the bottom of each basket are quite large and this results in sauce or water dripping from the top to the lower tiers, which may cross contaminate the flavours. To collect the run off, use the dripping tray underneath. All parts can be disassembled and are dishwasher safe, but as there are many, cleaning can be a hassle.

Owing to its inexpensive price, construction of the basket feels flimsy and thin, so care should be taken while handling the machine. The baskets are made from Polypropylene (PP) and Polycarbonate (PC) plastics, which are not BPA free, as well as aluminium. A plus point for the steamer is that it comes with stay cool handles, which allows users to lift the baskets immediately after the steaming is done.

Additional Features

The Kalorik is ETL and cETL certified. There is no warranty; instead users purchase a separate ‘protection plan’ for up to two years.

Pros

  • Turbo steaming
  • Timer
  • Large capacity
  • Stay cool handles
  • External water spout

Cons

  • Cross contamination of flavours
  • Not BPA-free
  • Flimsy material
  • No warranty

9. Aroma Professional Rice Cooker &amp Food Steamer

If you’re looking for an all-in-one cooking device that does it all, look no further than the Aroma Professional. NotAroma Professional Rice Cooker &amp Food Steamer (ARC-6106) only is the unit a rice cooker, it also doubles as a steamer for meat, fish and vegetables, and is able to make everything from steamed cakes and porridge to oatmeal, soup and stews. The machine is especially handy for students who live in dormitories without a kitchen stove, and comprises a large nonstick inner pot and a steam tray that can be fitted over the pot so that rice continues to cook underneath while the top layer steams. Owing to its versatility, users can even add other liquids such as chicken stock instead of just water to cook the rice or steam dishes.

Power and Controls

There are a number of pre-programmed controls on the Aroma, including keep-warm and steam, as well as dedicated buttons for cake, porridge, oatmeal, soup, stew and slow cooking.

The preset modes are convenient, as the timer is always optimised for a particular dish or ingredient. For rice, there are three modes, namely White Rice, Brown Rice and Quick Rice, the last of which shaves down cooking time by up to 28 minutes. Also included is a delayed timer function which allows for flexible meal planning, as it can be set up to 15 hours prior.  Users can set it the night before and enjoy a piping hot, fresh breakfast in the morning.

A unique feature of the Aroma is its Saute then Simmer (STS) function, which enables users to utilise the unit like a frying pan or wok. STS provides high heat sautéing to cook meat and seafood, before automatically switching to simmer mode once liquid is added.

Design

The Aroma’s egg-shaped design is ergonomic, with dimensions measuring 10.6 x 14.5 x 8.6 inches. However, it cannot be taken apart and nested, unlike multi-tiered steamers, so a considerable amount of space should be allocated for the unit. The inner pot is made of aluminium with a nonstick coating and seems durable. It comes complete with markings to indicate the water levels. The steaming basket, on the other hand, is made of a BPA-free plastic but feels thin and flimsy. Another downside to the Aroma is that there is only one steaming section, so only one dish can be prepared in addition to rice. The rice also absorbs the flavour of whatever ingredient it is steaming with.

Additional Features

In addition to the pot and steaming basket, the Aroma comes with a rice measuring cup, soup ladle and serving spatula.

Pros

  • Versatile
  • Preset modes for making various items
  • Unique saute and simmer function
  • Delayed timer
  • Keep warm
  • Attractive design

Cons

  • Cross contamination of flavours
  • Flimsy steaming basket
  • Can only prep one dish at a time

10. Oster CKSTSTMD5-W 5-Quart Food Steamer

For basic, no-frills cooking, the Oster is a decent choice that comes at a very affordable price. It offers a large capacityOster CKSTSTMD5-W 5-Quart Food Steamer of five quarts, with two transparent steaming bowls forming a double-tiered unit to cook different foods simultaneously. However, its function is limited to vegetables, proteins such as chicken and fish, eggs, or bread, as it does not come with a separate cup for cooking grains.

Power and Controls

The steamer runs on 400 Watts of power, which can take time to heat up. Controls are straightforward, as it comprises a simple timer dial that goes up to 60 minutes. The unit automatically shuts off when a cycle is completed, or when the water reservoir is empty. An external water level indicator lets users know how much water is left. However, as the steamer lacks a spout, there is no way to add water other than by removing the steaming baskets, which can be a hassle. Another area of improvement that can be done is the power indicator, which provides a visual reference to let users know when the steamer is switched on. However, it does not beep or emit noise when a cycle is done, so users will have to keep an eye on the unit.

Design

s a basic steamer, the Aroma does the job, but there are improvements that can be done. A major complaint is the cheap construction of the steaming baskets, which are not BPA-free and flimsy to boot. While the baskets can be placed in the dishwasher, care should be taken as the material is thin and subject to breakage. The machine produces a lot of steam and condensation but does not have an effective design to collect the drippings, which results in leaks and an oily reservoir that is difficult to clean. Cross contamination of flavours is also likely to occur.

Additional Features

The Oster comes with a two-year limited warranty for manufacturing defects.

Pros

  • Large capacity
  • Cheap
  • Timer

Cons

  • Limited use, very basic
  • Cross contamination
  • Cheap materials
  • Flimsy build
  • May leak

11. Aroma Housewares Professional Digital Rice Cooker and Food Steamer

The Aroma Professional ARC-2000SB is perfect for large families, as it doubles as a rice cooker and steamer. SimilarAroma Housewares Professional Digital Rice Cooker and Food Steamer in functionality to the ARC-6106 model from the same series, it has a larger capacity that can cook up to 20 cups of rice. Versatility is the name of the game, as the steaming basket, which fits snugly over the inner pot, can be used to steam meat, fish or vegetables while the rice cooks below, for a complete meal of carbs, protein and greens. The unit is also able to make soup, stews and chilli with its Saute-then-Simmer function.

Power and Controls

The ARC-2000SB comes with six convenient preset modes to optimise your cooking everytime. There are three modes for rice: White Rice, Brown Rice and Quick Rice, the latter of which cuts down cooking time by up to 50%. Once cooking is done, the steamer automatically goes into Keep-Warm mode. You can leave food in the steamer for up to one hour, although this is not recommended, as it tends to create a crust on the rice, or overcook steamed food. Unlike traditional steamers and cookers that require users to manually set the timer dial, the ARC-2000SB features a unique Sensor Logic Technology that uses an on-board micro-computer chip that automatically optimises cooking temperature for different ingredients, in order to enhance its flavour and texture. Last but not least, the Saute-Then-Simmer mode provides high heat for sauteing or browning foods before switching to a low simmer once liquid is added, so that you can make stew, chilli or even risotto.

Prep ahead of time using the programmable 15-hour delay timer to deliver delicious meals when you need them.

Design

Sleek and modern-looking, the ARC-2000SB is a welcome addition to any kitchen, albeit bulky at 10.8 x 11.2 x 10.8 inches. Its stainless steel exterior is sturdy and easy to maintain, while the inner pot is made of aluminium with a non-stick coating and comes with measurement levels on the side. The steaming basket is made of BPA-free plastic, but feels thin and poorly constructed. When cooking is done, the pot and all accessories remove for easy cleanup in the dishwasher, but not the lid which is attached to the machine and needs to be wiped down. Since the design only features one steaming section, only one dish can be prepared in addition to rice. Cross contamination of flavours is apparent, as the rice soaks up the flavours of the ingredient it is steaming with.Additional Features

For peace of mind, the cooker and steamer comes with a one-year limited warranty for manufacturing defects. Included with the set is a rice measuring cup and serving spatula.

Pros

  • Large capacity
  • Versatile
  • Six preset modes
  • Delay timer
  • Saute and simmer function
  • Smart cooking

Cons

  • Flimsy plastic steamer basket
  • Cross contamination of flavours
  • Only cooks one dish at a time

12. BELLA BLA13872 7.Housewares 4 Quart Healthy Food Steamer

Lightweight and easy to use, the Bella is a versatile steamer that lets you steam everything from fish, red meat,BELLA BLA13872 7.Housewares 4 Quart Healthy Food Steamer poultry and seafood, to tofu, vegetables, dumplings and dim sum. Its large 7.4 quart (7 litres) capacity holds a generous amount of food enough for the whole family, while the two-tiered design allows simultaneous cooking of different ingredients. Each tray has specialised nooks for steaming eggs, while an included rice cup goes to cooking rice and grains. The results are even and thoroughly cooked.

Power and Controls

The Bella has simple controls that are easy to operate. Unlike some higher end steamers, the Bella lacks preset programmes, so cooking times have to be manually adjusted. Its quick start heating system creates steam quickly and is ready for cooking in as little as 30 seconds. Adjust steaming duration with a dial timer that goes up to 60 minutes, and monitor water levels with an external indicator. For safety, the Bella switches off automatically when the water reservoir runs dry. Water can be added via a small chamber that swings out and closes back in to lie flush.

Design

The Bella boasts a simple but attractive design which looks great in the kitchen, but the unit is rather bulky at 11.6 x 8.9 x 11.7 inches and will take up considerable space on the countertop. A helpful guide with recommended cooking times for different ingredients is embossed on the front of the steamer. The two baskets are numbered, and they should always be placed in order as the bottom tier seals to the base correctly. Cleaning up is easy as all the parts, excluding the electronic steamer itself, are dishwasher safe.

That being said, the Bella is not without its flaws. The dial design is poor and it is difficult to see the steaming time numbers, as well as the indicator arrow on the dial. The tray to catch drippings is shallow and tends to overflow when the unit is used beyond 30 minutes. Construction of the baskets is cheap and feels flimsy, with some users reporting cracks and burns after prolonged use.

Additional Features

The Bella comes with a limited two-year warranty for manufacturing defects.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Large capacity
  • Two-tiered design
  • Basket has nooks for eggs
  • Timer

Cons

  • Poor dial design
  • Shallow collecting tray
  • Cheap build

13. Rosewill Electric Food Steamer RHST-15001

As it is able to prepare large quantities of food at the same time, the Rosewill is a decent choice for big families or forRosewill Electric Food Steamer RHST-15001 preparing meals ahead of time. Its three-tiered stackable baskets can hold an impressive 9.5 quarts (9 litres), to accommodate ingredients such as vegetables, poultry and seafood. Chicken, fish or meat should be placed in foil wrap before steaming to avoid sticking. There are also built-in holders for standing eggs up vertically. The separate rice bowl has a capacity of 1 litre.

Power and Controls

Equipped with 800 watts of power, the Rosewill has a turbo steam ring design that starts generating steam in less than 40 seconds. While it does not come with preset programmes, it does have a 60-minute dial timer that automatically switches off when the water reservoir is empty. Keep tabs on the water level with an external indicator and add water when it runs low through inlets on both sides of the steamer. The unit does not beep to indicate cooking is done, but utilises a power light instead.

Design

The Rosewill measures 12.2 x 9.2 x 15.6 inches, but the BPA-free, plastic baskets have a nested design for convenient storage. The baskets, along with the rice bowl, are dishwasher safe and easy to clean. Meanwhile, the front of the steamer features a helpful guide with recommended cooking times for different ingredients. However, a common complaint with users is that the ink printed on the unit comes off with water, making the timer markings impossible to read. The poor design of the drip tray also causes water to leak onto the counter, unless if a towel is placed under the steamer. Transfer of smell and flavour is unavoidable owing to the vent holes in each basket.

Additional Features

There is a limited one-year warranty for manufacturing defects.

Pros

  • Large capacity
  • Heats up quickly
  • External inlets for adding water
  • Nested steam baskets for convenient storage
  • Dishwasher safe components

Cons

  • Ink print comes off
  • Poor design causes leakage
  • Cross contamination of flavours

14. Aroma Housewares Digital Cool-Touch Rice Cooker and Food Steamer

The Aroma ARC-914SBD follows the same format and design as the rest of the Aroma range, doubling as a versatileAroma Housewares ARC-914SBD Digital Cool-Touch Rice Cooker and Food Steamer rice cooker and food steamer. Its large capacity inner pot holds up to eight cups of cooked rice, and a steaming tray goes over the opening for cooking greens, poultry, meat and other ingredients while rice cooks underneath. It can also be used to make stews and soups, chilli and jambalaya. The compact unit is a good choice for those living alone or students living in a dormitory looking to enjoy healthy, convenient meals. The one-pot cooking style means that you will not have to do washing up for multiple cooking utensils.

Power and Controls

The steamer comes with several preset modes, including three for rice: white, brown and a quick rice function that shaves cooking time by up to 50%. The rice tends to crust when left for too long in keep warm mode, so it should be tended to immediately after it has finished cooking. The other setting is steam. By employing a unique Sensor Logic Technology which uses an on-board micro-computer chip, the steamer automatically optimises cooking temperature to get the best results. Alternatively, you can adjust the timer to your own specifications by pressing the plus and minus buttons on the digital controls. The programmable 15-hour delay timer is a useful function for people on the go.

Design

Cleaning is a breeze with the Aroma. The cool touch stainless steel exterior makes for convenient handling, and the inner parts are easily removable and dishwasher friendly. The non-stick inner pot is made from aluminium, while the steaming tray comprises BPA-free plastic. However, it suffers the same issue as the other Aroma models, being thin, flimsy and prone to breakage. The Aroma is a compact unit that is easy to store, measuring only 8.5 x 9.3 x 8.7 inches.

Additional Features

Included with the set is a recipe booklet, rice measuring cup, serving spatula and soup ladle. The Aroma is insured by a one-year limited warranty.

Pros

  • Compact size, convenient storage
  • Easy to clean
  • Versatile
  • Delay timer

Cons

  • Flimsy steaming basket

15. Aroma Housewares Rice Cooker and Food Steamer

Last but not least, we have another Aroma model: the ARC-743-1NGB. Small but useful, it holds up to six cups ofAroma Housewares Rice Cooker and Food Steamer (ARC-743-1NG) cooked rice in its main chamber, which is also able to accommodate soups, stews, jambalaya, chilli and more. The steaming tray fits meats, poultry, vegetables and seafood and sits snugly over the pot while rice cooks below. Its versatility extends to items such as oatmeal, quinoa and other grains.

Power and Controls

The ARC-743 is very basic and lacks the preset modes available in other models of the series. There is only a cook and a warm button. This means that users have no control over the cooking time, and results may vary for different ingredients. The unit automatically switches to keep warm mode when food is done. With rice, this can create a slightly burnt crust if left in the steamer/cooker for a long time.

Design

The inner pot is made of non-stick aluminium, while the steaming tray is made of plastic, which seems to be made of more durable material than its counterparts of the same series. Both are dishwasher safe and can be cleaned in the top rack. At 11.1 x 10.4 x 8.1 inches, it is a compact unit and features a full-view tempered glass lid. Available in black, red and white designs to match your kitchen decor.

Additional Features

Aside from a one-year limited warranty, the unit comes with a rice measuring cup and serving spatula.

Pros

  • Versatile
  • Automatic keep warm function
  • Durable

Cons

  • Basic, limited controls

 

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