The Oster 6-Cup Rice Cooker is a simple, electric rice cooker that is easy to operate. It's made of better materials than most other small rice cookers. The most inexpensive models offer a plastic inner pot, while the Oster 6-Cup is completely metal. Like other pot-style cookers, it comes with a glass lid with a steaming vent and one-touch operation.
The design of the unit is modest. The outer cooking shell comes in either black or red, which isn’t as sleek as higher-priced stainless steel rice cookers. The pot can hold up to 3 cups of uncooked rice and yields 6 cups of fully cooked rice. The controls are straightforward. One click starts the rice cooker, and small, pixelated graphics show you whether the unit is in cooking or warming mode. When the rice is ready, unplugging the unit will safely shut it off. This model requires you to stir the rice. If you’d prefer not to have to do that, take a look at the Aroma 6-Cup Pot-Style ARC-743-1NG.
The Oster 6-Cup includes a steaming tray, a measuring cup and a ladle for steaming vegetables or meats, though it does not include a ladle holder like other rice cookers in the same price range. The steam tray is adequately sized, but the thin aluminum tends to warp after multiple uses. There are no extra bells and whistles with the Oster 6-Cup, but it is well suited to its main purpose – cooking rice.
The Oster 6-Cup has the same limitations as other pot-style rice cookers. The steaming vent on top is prone to occasionally spitting water onto the counter and nearby cabinets. For this reason, it is best to use it away from cabinets and with a nice layer of paper towels underneath. While the unit can yield up to six cups, staying below its maximum capacity will help reduce mess. The instructions also state that the rice should be stirred after 15 minutes, which defeats the purpose of a rice cooker’s convenient functionality.
The Oster 6-Cup rice cooker is a sufficient rice steamer that is an upgrade from cooking rice in a pot, but it doesn’t offer the same functionality as higher-end rice cookers.