Zojirushi NS-LHC05 Review: Small Cooker For Brown Or Jasmine Rice

The Zojirushi NS-LHC05 rice cooker and warmer is the right size for a single person or a couple. It cooks up to three measuring cups of white rice and two measuring cups of brown rice. Our Zojirushi NS-LHC05 review considers its key features and answers a few questions before reaching a conclusion.

Zojirushi NS-LHC05: Key Features

The Zojirushi NS-LHC05 is similar to other Zojirushi 3-cup rice cookers such as the NL-BAC05. It can cook white rice, sushi rice, brown rice, GABA brown rice and rice porridge. Most noteworthy is that the NS-LHC05 has a menu setting for cooking jasmine white rice.

  • 6 oz. measuring cup, spatula and holder are included.
  • Cooked rice is kept warm automatically.
  • Digital rice cooker with microcomputer which controls cooking process.
  • GABA brown rice setting.
  • Inner lid is detachable for thorough cleaning.
  • Jasmine white rice menu setting.
  • LCD with clock and internal battery.
  • Nonstick cooking pot with high-contrast water level lines.
  • Retractable power cord.
  • Rice can be reheated during the keep warm cycle.
  • Three cup rice cooking capacity is perfect for small kitchens.

Is the Zojirushi NS-LHC05 made in Japan?

No, the Zojirushi NS-LHC05 rice cooker is probably made in China. Nonetheless, the quality control is good, and the rice cooker is made with quality parts.

Does it keep rice warm?

The rice cooker goes into keep warm mode after completing one of the menu programs. However, keeping mixed rice dishes or rice porridge warm is not recommended due to the risk of spoilage or bad odors. The display will flash “0h” after cooking with the MIXED or PORRIDGE setting. This reminds you to cancel the keep warm cycle and to remove the rice from the cooker.

The Zojirushi NS-LHC05 will display the elapsed hours until it reaches twelve hours. Then it starts to blink “12h” to remind you to cancel the warmer function and to use the rice. The manufacturer does not recommend keeping rice warm for longer than twelve hours.

The NS-LHC05 control panel does give you the ability to either increase or decrease the keep warm temperature. You do this by pressing and holding the CANCEL button for more than three seconds until you hear three beeps and the display blinks ‘0’. This is the default keep warm temperature. There are three keep warm presets available: 1, 2 or 3. Press the up or down buttons to change the temperatures. You should increase the temperature if the rice tends to develop bad odors. Decrease the temperature if the rice becomes too dry or changes color in the keep warm cycle.

Can it reheat rice?

The Zojirushi NS-LHC05 has a START/REHEAT button. The reheat function only works if the rice cooker is in keep warm mode (keep warm light is on). You should add one or two tablespoons full of water and stir the rice before pressing the START/REHEAT button. The cooker will reheat the rice in about ten minutes. It goes back to the keep warm mode after reheating the rice.

Is the pot nonstick?

Yes, the inner cooking pot is covered with a nonstick coating. Treat it with care like you would any other piece of nonstick cookware. Use only the included spatula or some other non-scratch utensil. Do not clean the pot in the dishwasher, and do not use abrasive scourers or cleaning fluids. Wash it with a soft sponge and soapy water. You can always order a new pot if the coating starts to peel off after a few years of regular use.

Does it have a timer?

The Zojirushi NS-LHC05 has a delay timer with two settings. The clock must be accurate for the timer to be accurate. You set the timer to finish cooking at a certain clock time, such as 06:00 or 18:00. The rice cooker remembers the timer settings even when it is unplugged due to its small internal battery. For example, use the first timer setting to cook rice porridge for breakfast and set the second timer setting to cook white rice for your evening meal.

What is the power rating?

This model is made for the American market and requires AC, 120V, 60Hz power. It consumes 450 watts during cooking and 28 watts while keeping rice warm.

Zojirushi NS-LHC05 rice cooker with bowls of rice
It cooks sushi rice, brown rice and jasmine rice.

Zojirushi NS-LHC05: Conclusion

The Zojirushi NS-LHC05 is more expensive than ordinary analog 3-cup rice cookers because it has a microcomputer, multiple menu settings, LCD control panel and the Zojirushi name tag. However, it might be worth spending extra money if you are serious about the taste and texture of the rice that you eat. This Zojirushi rice cooker really cooks white, brown and jasmine rice better than cheaper on/off electric rice cookers.

The only problems we could find were with the time it takes to cook rice and with the battery replacement. The Zojirushi NS-LHC05 takes almost twice as long as analog electric rice cookers to cook white or brown rice. The other problem that people report is replacing the internal battery after about five years when it dies. You have to contact Zojirushi customer services and send the whole cooker away at your own cost to a factory to get the battery replaced. The rice cooker will still cook rice without the battery, but it will not save the clock time or timer settings.

The 3-cup capacity of the NS-LHC05 might be enough for one to three persons, depending on how much rice they eat. The keep warm function is good for keeping rice warm for hours until you want to reheat it.

The Zojirushi NS-LHC05 might be an expensive 3-cup electric rice cooker, but the results are very good. You may check today’s price for the NS-LHC05 on Amazon.