Zojirushi NHS Conventional Rice Cooker: A Detailed Review

The Zojirushi NHS rice cooker line offers high-quality conventional electric models with simple single switch controls and glass lids. Choose from three sizes: a 3-cup, 6-cup, or 10-cup uncooked rice capacity. While I’ve reviewed Zojirushi’s fuzzy logic cookers, I haven’t covered the NHS conventional models yet. In this review, I’ll provide an overview of the NHS-06, NHS-10, and NHS-18.

Zojirushi NHS Rice Cookers: Sizes And Models

First, Zojirushi uses a 180ml (6.1oz) measuring cup for raw short grain rice to determine the 3-cup capacity listed for this rice cooker. Every Zojirushi rice cooker includes a 6oz plastic measuring cup, which is about 3/4 of a US cup. The capacity is measured in these 6oz cups of uncooked rice. Do not confuse the included rice cooker cup with standard US cups, as they differ in size. The listed capacity refers to the number of 6oz cups of raw rice the cooker holds. However, cooking other grains may result in a reduced capacity.

The Zojirushi NHS-06 has a 3-cup raw rice capacity, equal to about 0.6 liters, or 6 cups of cooked rice. It does not have a steamer basket, for the reason that its cooking pot is just too small to cook both rice and steam food at the same time.

The next model is the Zojirushi NHS-10, which has a 6-cup raw short grain white rice capacity, or about 1.2 liters. This model does have a stainless steel steamer basket that can be used for steaming vegetables or other food.

The largest model is the Zojirushi NHS-18, which has an uncooked rice capacity of up to 10 cups, or 1.8 liters. Similar to the previous model, the NHS-18 also includes a stainless steel steamer basket.

Therefore, if you only want to cook rice and never want to steam any food, then the Zojirushi NHS-06 should be the most affordable choice (check price on Amazon – paid link). However, you will have to buy either the NHS-10 or the NHS-18 when you want to cook both rice and steam food.

Do the Zojirushi NHS models have a keep warm function?

I have noticed that, according to the Zojirushi website, the keep warm function is only available on the NHS-10 and NHS-18 models. Therefore, the NHS-06 model does not have a keep warm function.

Actually, I can now see that the small control panel on the NHS-06 model only has a single indicator light with the word COOKING printed underneath it. In contrast, the control panels of the NHS-10 and NHS-18 models have two indicator lights: one light for KEEP WARM, and another light for COOKING.

Zojirushi NHS-06
As you can see, the Zojirushi NHS-06 does not have a keep warm indicator light.

Is the single switch control easy to use?

The Zojirushi NHS conventional rice cooker allows you to cook rice with the flip of a single switch. Simply add rice and water to the cooker, flip the switch to start cooking, and walk away. When the rice is done, the switch automatically clicks off and the cooker switches to keep-warm mode, ensuring perfectly cooked rice with no monitoring required.

With its basic on/off switch, the Zojirushi NHS delivers reliably consistent results every time. It cooks rice quickly and evenly, then keeps it at an ideal serving temperature until you are ready. Just fill it, flip the switch, and let the cooker work its magic.

The ease of use and quality construction make this an excellent choice for anyone who wants cooked rice at the push of a button. With no timer or separate warming function to manage, this no-frills rice cooker keeps meal preparation straightforward. Just add your rice and water, flip the switch, and wait for the click that signals cooked rice ready to be enjoyed.

Can you use the Zojirushi NHS to cook brown rice?

The Zojirushi NHS rice cooker produces excellent white rice, but it struggles to properly cook brown rice. While some users report decent results, many find the rice turns out too mushy, too dry, or burnt on the bottom. The cooker lacks brown rice-specific settings and instructions. It tends to boil over and make a mess when cooking brown rice. The manual recommends not using the keep warm function for brown rice, requiring you to unplug it when done cooking.

Overall, the Zojirushi NHS rice cooker is a quality product for white rice, but it is not optimized for brown rice. Users who frequently prepare brown rice may want to consider other cookers designed for brown rice.

Is the inner cooking pot easy to clean?

Since the pot has a nonstick coating, handle it gently. While you could wash the cooking pot and steamer basket in the dishwasher, I recommend hand-washing the cooking pot with warm, soapy water and rinsing it clean to preserve the nonstick surface.

In contrast, the stainless steel steamer basket can go on the top dishwasher rack safely. Note that unlike the stainless steamer, the Zojirushi NHS cooking pot itself is not stainless steel but rather aluminum with a nonstick coating.

Does the Zojirushi NHS model have a stainless steel steamer?

The stainless steel steaming basket is only available on the larger NHS-10 and NHS-18 models. The smaller NHS-06 model lacks both the keep warm function and steamer basket. Without the steaming insert, the NHS-06 is limited to just cooking rice. I prefer the compact size of the NHS-06, but the lack of a steaming basket means that I would not be able to steam vegetables.

Zojirushi NHS-18
The Zojirushi NHS-10 and NHS-18 models have a stainless steel steamer basket.

Zojirushi NHS Has Glass Lid With Steam Vent Hole

The Zojirushi NHS rice cooker works well for cooking rice, but the lid design causes some problems. When the rice is cooking and the water is boiling, water splashes out from the steam vent hole in the lid and also leaks between the lid and metal pot. This splattering occurs with other rice cookers that have glass lids too.

While the rice cooker does not burn the rice, the faulty lid sprays rice water everywhere, making a mess on the lid and countertop. A small amount of droplets on the lid is expected, but the main issue seems to be that the lid does not fit tightly onto the cooking pot. No matter how you adjust the portions or rinse the rice, once the lid is on, the boiling water starts spluttering and bubbling out.

Many reviews mention the loose lid causing bubbling problems. The lid allows water to leak out, an unfortunate issue seen with all rice cookers with glass lids. To reduce the messy splatter, either buying a model with a larger cooking pot or rinsing the rice more thoroughly before cooking may help.

What do users have to say about the Zojirushi NHS rice cooker?

The Zojirushi NHS rice cooker is functional, but it has some issues. The most common complaints in reviews are splattering from the steam vent and rice sticking to the bottom of the pot. These can be minimized by adjusting the water level and thoroughly rinsing the rice before cooking.

Another frequent complaint is that the keep warm function is ineffective because the lid does not fit tightly on the pot. If you really need to keep the rice warm for many hours at a time, then you should get a Zojirushi fuzzy logic rice cooker that has a better keep warm function and a tighter lid design. In that case, you might read my Zojirushi NS-TSC10 review. The NS-TSC10 model has both an automatic and extended keep warm cycle, and a reheating function.

The simplicity of the one-button design draws praise, so some may prefer this basic single-switch model for cooking rice. Though some owners report the cooker splashing starchy water on their countertops, others do not have this problem. Following the recommended water measurements in the manual may help avoid splashing.

For those seeking a no-frills cooker for white rice, the Zojirushi NHS is a satisfactory choice.

Zojirushi NHS Rice Cooker: Problems And Disadvantages

The Zojirushi NHS rice cooker has some drawbacks. The glass lid might splatter starchy water when cooking. Cleaning is tricky since water can splash through the small hole in the glass lid. There’s a steam release hole that emits moisture.

In addition, the cooked rice browns slightly at the bottom with each use. Furthermore, the cooked rice can get mushy in warm mode.

The Zojirushi NHS rice cooker is durable and easy to operate, but a bit pricey when compared to other similar rice cookers with glass lids. Reducing the cost would make it more appealing. Otherwise, it’s a reliable rice cooker with a few minor flaws.

What are the advantages of the Zojirushi NHS rice cooker?

The Zojirushi NHS rice cooker offers many benefits that make cooking rice easy and convenient. It has a simple, one-button operation to cook rice automatically every time.

The non-stick inner pan allows for quick cooking and easy cleanup. The inner cooking pot has easy-to-read water measurement markers inside. The pot’s interior markings for water and rice levels make measuring simple.

Even though the NHS-06 model does not have a steamer basket, the NHS-10 And NHS-18 models have both steamer baskets and keep warm functions.

While a bit pricier than basic cookers, Zojirushi rice cookers are durable, versatile appliances that produce excellent rice with little effort required.


The Zojirushi NHS rice cooker gets some negative reviews due to hot, starchy water blowing out of the steam release hole in the lid during cooking. While it makes great rice and steams vegetables well, the steam vent hole spews rice starch droplets around the counter. This not only makes a mess to clean up, but poses a safety risk from the scalding steam. While it makes tasty rice, your counter could get soaked every time you use it.

The Zojirushi NHS is a basic rice cooker that is easy to clean despite having minimal features beyond cooking rice and steaming vegetables. It is an easy to use rice cooker that has only one switch. However, you might dislike the simplicity of a single-switch rice cooker if you like the more technologically advanced digital rice cookers that use fuzzy logic and offer multiple cooking functions.

In conclusion, the Zojirushi NHS rice cooker is recommended for people looking for a no-frills rice cooker which does the job of cooking white rice automatically. Click here for current price on Amazon (paid link).