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The Difference Between Short-, Medium-, and Long-Grain Rice

Nadia Galinova
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Nadia Galinova
Different types of rice

Rice is one of the most healthy grainy foods. It is rich in complex carbohydrates (75% - 85%) and protein (5% - 10%), which are the main source of energy for the body. That is why it is so widely used.

However, its preparation proves to be a difficult task for many. The reason is that there are different types of rice. Depending on the size of the grains, it is divided into long-grain, short-grain and medium-grain, which are suitable for the preparation of various dishes. Therefore, if you want to prepare a delicious dish with rice, you need to know what the difference is between the different types of rice and which one should be used for a particular dish.

Long grain rice

long grain jasmine rice

The length of long-grain rice is no less than 0.24″ (6 mm). Of the three types of rice, it is the easiest to cook, so it is suitable for novice cooks. When preparing it, the individual grains do not stick to each other, but remain separated, unless it is boiled. Also, it does not become too fluffy unlike other varieties.

Long grain rice is high in gluten. It is used extensively in Asian cuisine. The most famous varieties of this type of rice are jasmine rice and basmati rice.

Short grain rice

short grain rice with beans

The short-grained rice is 0.2″ (4-5 mm) long and 0.12″ (2-3) mm wide. It is often confused with medium grain rice. It has a higher starch content and a lower gluten content. It is characteristic that its grains stick together and when boiled it turns into a slurry.

It is suitable for making sushi, puddings or any other dish where you need to shape the rice.

Medium grain rice

stuffed peppers with medium grain rice

Medium-grained rice is 0.2″ (5-6 mm) long. It is slightly rounder than the long-grained ones. Its surface is slightly rough. It is characteristic that during cooking, the grains remain separated, but stick together once they have cooled down.

Medium-grained rice is suitable for preparing dishes such as risotto, paella and other dishes, for which the rice needs to have a fluffier texture.

Medium-grained rice is rich in starch, which makes it the most common. Some dishes prepared from it are - sarma, stuffed peppers with rice, chicken with rice, rice with vegetables, wine kebab and many others.