“This is Japan” is a weekly blog post where I talk a little about my life here.

It’s a place where I can share some of the strange, funny, or thought-provoking stories from my week. You can learn a little about what it is like to live in Japan and some of the weird and wonderful things here.

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Do you recall my post about my new rice cooker? I liked that it had a function to make cakes.

Well, I have now used it to make a cake. I made a rice cooker carrot cake. And I must say, the cake function is far better than not having a cake function.

When I tried to make a cake in my old rice cooker, it just cooked the same way it would cook rice. That means I couldn’t set a timer for how long it would cook. Thus, I would cook it once, it would not be finished, so I would have to cook it again. But I couldn’t just press the button. I had to take it out and let it cool for a while, otherwise it wouldn’t work. Don’t ask me why. It was always a bit of a gamble.

Well, this new rice cooker has a timer, so I can set it for 30 or 40 minutes or whatever. It actually worked too. I didn’t have to take it out and let it cool/deflate before cooking it again.

The next day, I made cream cheese frosting. Because what even is carrot cake without cream cheese frosting?

Here is the recipe I followed/made-up:

Rice cooker carrot cake

The original recipe was for two pans, so the cake would be a double-decker. With a rice cooker, I don’t have time for that. So I cut the recipe in half and made a short cake. This is what I used:


  • 1/2 + 1/8 cup applesauce (I had to make this because I couldn’t find any in Japan)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 + 1/2 eggs (yes, I used half an egg)


  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon


  • 1 cup grated carrot
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts (I used walnuts)
  • vanilla (I just splashed it in until I thought it was enough)
  • 1/2 cup crushed pineapple (not drained)

Cream cheese frosting

  • 1/2 cup butter (softened)
  • 8 oz cream cheese (softened) (I don’t know what an ounce is, so I just guessed)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ?? powdered sugar (until it was the right consistency for frosting, duh)

To make it, combine One. Add Two. Stir in Three. Pour into greased rice cooker dish. I baked for 30 minutes, then 15 minutes more. 40 minutes is probably enough. Once it’s cool, put the frosting on. I also topped it with walnuts, because I felt like it.

Here is the finished cake. I’ve made it twice now, and both times it was yummers.

rice cooker carrot cakecarrot cake

Oh, and if you are interested, here is the original recipe. It’s not a rice cooker carrot cake.

Does this count as a hack, making cake in a rice cooker?


  1. That cake looks delicious and your rice cooker is quite fancy. My mother owned one when I was a little girl but I doubt she knew (or even I for that matter) that you could make cakes inside a rice cooker! You are a clever cookie x

  2. Your rice cooker looks fancy. My mother used to own one when I was really young and we used it a lot. But she did not know (I think) and even I did not that you can make such delicious looking cakes in a rice cooker. Clever you!

  3. Good Lord Jennifer, this looks so delish!! By the way, your new website looks really fantastic, well done!!

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