Everything You Need to Know About Bomba Rice: Should You Wash It?

Everything You Need to Know About Bomba Rice: Should You Wash It?


Bomba rice is Spanish rice that has become increasingly popular in the United States. This rice is known for its unique texture and flavor, but there is one question that many people ask: should you wash bomba rice before cooking it? In this post, we will discuss the multiple facets of bomba rice and how it compares to the more common white rice. We will explore what makes this type of rice so particular, where it comes from, and explore its taste.

What Is Bomba Rice?

Bomba rice is a type of Spanish rice that hails from the Canary Islands and is distinguished from its white counterpart by having a texture similar to that of milled flour. The rice also has a nutty taste, which makes it appealing to those who want something different than their regular white rice.

How Do You Wash Bomba Rice?

To get the most out of bomba rice, wash it before cooking. Bomba rice has a thick, hard outer shell that is difficult to remove. The outer shell can be removed by soaking the rice in water mixed with vinegar or lemon juice for at least 20 minutes.

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After soaking the bomba, you will want to wash it under running water until all traces of the vinegar or lemon juice are gone. Once all traces are gone from your hands, give the rice a final rinse and drain it in a colander for about half an hour. 

What Are The Benefits Of Washing Bomba Rice Before Cooking It?

1. If you cook bomba rice without washing it first, your entire meal could be ruined by a strange and off-putting taste. Bomba rice can sometimes infuse the water in which it is cooked with a sour, acidic taste that ruins the entire dish.

2. If you leave the thin outer shell on bomba rice and try to eat it, you may experience discomfort. This is because bomba rice has a tough shell that takes many hours of vigorous chewing to break down its texture (unless you break it down in a food processor).

3. Like all rice, bomba rice can become complex when kept in an airtight container for a long time. Leaving your bomba rice in an airtight container for even a month will become harder and harder to chew. Interestingly, bomba rice is also one of the market’s most expensive types. This high price is because homemade bomba rice becomes tastier and more fragrant over time!

How Do You Cook Bomba Rice, And What Are Some Of The Dishes You Can Make With It?

After washing the rice, you must cook it. You can do this by boiling it in salted water or cooking it in a rice cooker. Boiling the rice will take about 20 minutes while cooking it in a rice cooker will take only 10 minutes.

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You can see how much bomba rice can be utilized by looking at what other countries have done with the word “bomba.” The term “Bombay” was initially used for the city of Mumbai, India, but is now commonly used for any type of Indian dish.

1. Bolognese

This popular Italian dish is made with spaghetti, ground beef, and tomato sauce. However, if you want to create a bomba-style bolognese, use bomba rice instead of pasta in your recipe. You can make it in a pot or on the stovetop.

2. Pad Thai Salad

This may sound familiar to those who have tried vegetarian versions of this Thai recipe: noodles and vegetables stir-fried with garlic and chiles in a spicy tamarind sauce spiced up with fish sauce, lime juice, and sugar.

3. Paella

If you want to make a bomba-inspired paella, simply replace the rice with bomba rice.

4. Bomba Pudding

For those more interested in desserts, cook bomba rice with sugar and water over low heat until it reaches a creamy consistency.

Is There A Difference Between Washed And Unwashed Bomba Rice Regarding Taste Or Texture?

No difference has been found between washed and unwashed bomba rice regarding taste. However, if cooked with the outer shell still on, you may find that bomba will not be as soft as other types of Spanish rice when finished cooking. On the other hand, if you soak your bomba in water for 20 minutes with some vinegar or lemon juice and then drain it for about half an hour before cooking, you will ensure a more tender end product.

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As far as texture goes, washed and unwashed bombs can be used interchangeably in many dishes, such as in paella or bolognese.

Are There Other Types Of Rice That Should Be Washed Before Cooking, And If So, How Should They Be Washed?

If you have white rice, it is best to wash it before cooking. This is because white rice begins the process of becoming hard as it sits in an airtight container.

You should use a little vinegar or lemon juice when washing them before cooking brown rice and other types of rice that are scratched or bruised. The acid released by vinegar or lemon juice will help soften any problematic areas.


While bomba rice may be hard to come by, it is popular among rice lovers who wish to try something new with their favorite grain. You can easily find recipes using bomba rice or simply use it as a substitute for the more common white rice in your favorite dishes. 

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