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How to Cook Porridge/Congee (Stove-top Method)

How to cook porridge

Check Out: Pumpkin Porridge Recipe

Cooking porridge is one of the easiest things ever. Even easier than cooking rice to me, because there is hardly any risk of using the wrong amount of water – you can easily add more water during cooking if the water dries out, or you if add too much water, the cooked porridge will soak it up after some time (or you can also ladle away a top layer of water). So forgive me for posting such a simple tutorial. But easy as this may be, I was completely clueless when I wanted to cook porridge for the first time. So this little step-by-step pictorial tutorial is for those who have not cooked porridge before :)

Printable Recipe
How to cook porridge Wash rice grains, use your hand to give the water a few swirls and then discard water. You may want to repeat this more than once – some people like to rinse until the water is completely clear, while others like to rinse once while the water is still a bit opaque.
How to cook porridge Fill pot halfway with water. It is not really necessary to measure the water because it is very forgiving. It is better to add too much water than too little, as the cooked porridge will soak up the excess liquid. Anytime the water runs dry (you will hear ‘popping’ sounds), just add hot water to keep the porridge watery and simmering.
How to cook porridge Cover with lid and bring the pot to a boil.
How to cook porridge When the pot comes to a boil, reduce heat to a low simmer. Leave the lid partially opened. This step is VERY important. Otherwise, the water will bubble out of the lid and create a terrible mess and also pose a potential hazard.
How to cook porridge Every 10 minutes or so, use a soup ladle to gently scrap the bottom of the pan to loosen and dislodge the rice grains that stick to the bottom.
How to cook porridge Cook the porridge according to the consistency you like. If you still want to see the rice grain, it usually takes about 20 minutes.
How to cook porridge Another 10 minutes and the grains separates. This is the consistency I like. You can simmer even longer for a more watery, finer and more congee-like consistency.

Leave a Comment

52 Responses to “How to Cook Porridge/Congee (Stove-top Method)”

  1. Eat. Travel. Eat! — September 1, 2010 @ 8:52 am

    I usually make my congee in the rice cooker but it is nice the directions for if I didn’t have a rice cooker! It’s funny on how airlines fix the the porridge soaking up the water. I saw the flight attendant with a metal box of porridge, and then they added boiling water for the coffee/tea to heat the porridge up as well as making it more liquidy.


    • wiffy replied: — September 2nd, 2010 @ 11:00 am

      that’s what I did for too – just pour hot water hehe … So many ppl make the congee in the rice cooker! I really must learn.


  2. Lorraine — September 1, 2010 @ 1:34 pm

    Excellent tutorial and an inspirational website for ‘Noobies’.
    Would like to know where I can buy the Chicken Bowl ?
    Looking forward to your upcoming ikan bilis powder and fried shallots recipes.


    • wiffy replied: — September 1st, 2010 @ 3:19 pm

      chicken bowl for the shallots oil? I bought it at a pasar malam at Kovan. But I think you can find it at neighbourhood shops selling those traditional looking cookware and cutlery or at Chinatown. Thanks for your kind words :)


  3. Tastes of Home — September 1, 2010 @ 4:36 pm

    Nice pics as always!! Congee is one of my fav Chinese comfort foods..:)


  4. Easy Picnic Recipes — September 1, 2010 @ 5:57 pm

    awesome post! what a delicious recipe! can I take it tasty! :)


  5. Reeni — September 1, 2010 @ 11:11 pm

    Since I have never cooked porridge this was very useful for me! Thanks for showing us how! I shall make my own now.


  6. Cat @ The KitchenMaid — September 14, 2010 @ 10:35 am

    In recent months I’ve made a great discovery: my slowcooker makes pretty good congee! Actually I put the rice and water into the pot before I go to bed, turn it on low. and I wake up to the aroma of rice in the morning. It’s very nice!


  7. Trissa — September 17, 2010 @ 4:57 pm

    I think all the commenters have said this already but for what it’s worth – this is a wonderful tutorial on how to make congee. In the Philippines we have a similar dish called Arroz Caldo which is also rice porridge – with your tips I’m going to be adapting my recipe to your soon.


  8. PJ — September 18, 2010 @ 3:12 pm

    Nice tutorial..We love conjee and this is our Sunday breakfast[Can u belive that!!].We use a mixture of rice like forbidden rice,brown rice,white rice,some lentils like green gram ,black bean,ground nuts,a little snow fungus etc.It s super yum and easily prepared in a pressure cooker:)


  9. Nicholas — November 14, 2010 @ 11:55 am

    Thank you for your guide. Now I know how to make porridge for myself and family already.


  10. Harmony — August 6, 2012 @ 6:44 pm

    Thanks! I didn’t know what rice porridge was but it sounds so good that I wanted to make it. xD