Does it live up to our exceedingly high expectations?

If you’re a regular consumer of rice, then perhaps you’ve had this problem before: you make a ton of rice at once, freeze it to have on hand for later, but then it thaws out as a giant frozen block of smushed goo.

That’s probably because there was too much moisture in the rice when it was frozen. This is where 100-yen shop The Daiso’s water-removing “Rice, Shumai, and Side Dish Storage Container” should have come in…

…but our Japanese-language reporter and 100-yen shop product tester Go Hatori tried this product out before, and it was such a piece of junk that he threw it right in the trash afterwards.

But that was a year ago. Now, Daiso seems to have completely overhauled the product, given it a new name (“Freezer Bowl for Rice”), and re-released it. Will this new product meet Go’s expectations and preserve the rice the way he needs it to? Let’s find out.

Both the 2019 and 2020 products were and are meant to be safe to store rice in the freezer as well as the fridge, and they are also microwave safe, even with the lid on.

They come with a strainer which separates from the main bowl, and this double layer structure is boasted to have many useful purposes: it helps rice stay fluffy and tasty as it defrosts, keeps excess moisture from making the rice too sticky, and circulates steam to help warm up the rice in the microwave.

▼ The separate pieces of the 2020 version

The biggest difference between the old version and the new is that 2019’s version came with two in a package for 100 yen, but the new version comes with just one for the same price. In terms of value per item, the new one doesn’t compare, but in terms of quality the price indicates that it’s much better. The 2020 version does also come with a steam vent, which is a nice addition.

▼ It also has a handy snap-open top.

But probably the most notable difference between the two is that the 2020 version has way more holes in the colander, and they are all cut properly, without any plastic residue hanging on to the edges. That is a major quality upgrade in Go’s eyes.

Now, since he threw away the older Daiso version, Go decided to compare the new version to his most favorite, most beloved rice storage container: Nakaya’s “Fukkura Pack”, or “Fluffy Pack”.

It has more or less the same features of the Daiso’s rice container, just a slightly different shape, and no steam vent.

After putting them side by side, the most obvious observation that Go made was that the Daiso’s rice container looked like it could hold far more rice than the Nakaya pack.

But when he scooped some freshly made rice into the containers, it seemed like they took the same amount. Either way, both of them were the perfect size for a single serving.

▼ Now to put them into the freezer!

▼ One day later…

▼ Tada!

Both are nice and frozen. But how will the Daiso version reheat in the microwave?

▼ Don’t forget to open the steam vent!

▼ Then watch nervously as it warms up…

Ding! Both came out of the microwave nice and hot. Now to remove the rice to a bowl.

That’s when the difference between the two became most apparent.

For Go, the biggest factor in determining the effectiveness of the containers is the amount of water left behind in the bowl after the rice was heated up. This indicates how well the strainer was able to remove the excess moisture from the rice to keep it fluffy.

At first glance, it doesn’t seem like the amount of water was much different. But when he poured each one into a more precise measuring cup…

▼ Nakaya on the left, Daiso on the right

It was clear that Nakaya’s container drained slightly more water than the Daiso’s, which means that it was better able to remove excess water from the rice. However, Go failed to take into account the fact that the Daiso’s had a steam vent. Perhaps some of that extra water evaporated out of the vent instead of dropping down in to the bowl.

Of course, the most important test was yet to come: the taste test. Would the Daiso’s rice container be able to produce the same delicious, fluffy quality of rice as the Nakaya container? Time for the moment of truth…

Rice from the Nakaya container. As usual, a solid thumbs up from Go.

And rice from the Daiso Container.

▼ Hm…

▼ Yes…


“They don’t seem to differ much,” said Go. One the one hand, the rice warmed up in the Daiso container was hot all the way through the middle, which was a pleasant surprise. On the other hand, the rice warmed up in the Nakaya container had the advantage of less excess water and was more firm and smooth.

It would be hard to pick which one was better, he said. Both maintained the texture of the rice and heated it all the way through.

So the Daiso’s “Freezer Bowl for Rice” earns a solid 90 out 100 points, and receives Daiso Tester Go Hattori’s seal of approval. If you need a container that will best preserve the fluffy and delicious constitution of rice, then this is a great affordable option.

And if you’re looking to know if any other 100-shop products are any good, check out Go’s review of the Daiso’s curry spoons, sandals, and VR headset.

Photos: ©SoraNews24
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