Quick Overview: Fried Rice Recipe
- Set up the cooking station
- Heat butter
- Scramble eggs
- Saute vegetables
- Add rice and sauce
- Add scrambled eggs
- Serve immediately
- What Is Fried Rice?
- Tools You Will Need
- Recipe: Quick and Easy Fried Rice
- Nutrition Facts
- Easy Fried Rice Variations
- Tips For Making The Best Fried Rice
- Storing Leftover Fried Rice
- Frequently Asked Questions
I find something about a bowl full of warm fried rice very comforting. While digging a little deeper into the history of this dish, I found out that fried rice became a staple as early as the Sui Dynasty in China. One of the main reasons for the continued popularity of this dish comes down to 2 things: First, you can adapt this dish to your preferred flavor profile, and second, people almost always cook too must rice to eat in one sitting.
Let’s take a look at some delicious fried rice variations and some quick tips that will give you a lip-smacking bowl of fried rice every single time.
1. What Is Fried Rice?
Fried rice is a quick and delicious dish that transforms leftovers into something greater. While you might think that certain ingredients like eggs and garlic are typical of fried rice, the only things you actually need to make fried rice are high heat, rice, and oil. Anything else you add to this bowl of rice is up to you.
Fried rice comes in many styles. In China, it’s typically lightly seasoned with salt and perhaps a little soy sauce or another sauce, along with scant amounts of aromatics and meat. In the Chinese-American tradition, you might find it made with bigger chunks of meat and much more sauce. You may also add any vegetable you like, such as frozen pea and carrot, bell pepper, bok choy, or anything else that you fancy. These variations really depend on what you feel like adding to your fried rice.
2. Tools You Will Need
Making fried rice is a relatively easy process, but with the right tools, you can cut meal prep time in half and have your bowl of fried rice ready in no time.
This 3-ply aluminum-core piece of cookware is designed to help you create magic in the kitchen. This high-performing, medium-weight, and ultra-functional cookware is built to last a lifetime. Unlike other aluminum cookware, this one uses cladding technology to fuse additional thick gauge layers of non-reactive stainless steel that works well when browning and braising foods. Since fried rice cooks best on high heat, this wok is exactly what you need to do the job like a pro.
- The wok boasts impeccable conductivity to quickly heat up and evenly cook a full range of culinary delights, from thick proteins to delicate omelets.
- The lid is made of thick, extra-strong, 4mm tempered glass that provides a clear window during the entire cooking process for more precise cooking.
- The wok comes with an Eterna coating which has non-stick properties that last for a long time and makes sure your fried rice does not stick to the bottom of the wok when being cooked on high heat.
- The all-metal handle of this wok can get hot on use, so be sure to use oven mitts or kitchen gloves when using it.
- The 12” wok can be slightly difficult to store, especially if you have a compact kitchen with small drawers and shelf space.
2. Chef Knife 8”- Shogun Series | Dalstrong
The successful preparation of Fried Rice requires a sharp knife. Supreme function and stunning elegance come together to make this knife an exceptional tool. This chef knife is very versatile and has exceptional cutting prowess. The exquisite hammered finish is not only a beautiful statement of craftsmanship, but it also helps reduce drag and minimize stuck on food. This also helps achieve uniform cuts of vegetables for your fried rice.
- The blade has scalpel-like sharpness at a staggering 8-12 degrees angle per side. This helps you sail through meal prep and any other culinary challenge.
- The knife is rust-resistant which means your knife will stay cleaner and lasts longer.
- The full tang of the knife provides maximum robustness and makes the knife strong and durable.
- The blade of this knife is also impervious to heat, cold, and moisture.
- This knife comes with a slightly heavy price tag. For more pocket-friendly blade options, you can take a look at the other chef’s knives available.
- If you are new to the kitchen, you can start with a shorter 6-7 inch blade. That will be less intimidating to use and will help you get used to using professional blades for cooking at home.
This is the perfect knife to invest in if you are new to the kitchen. The 6” blade is super comfortable to start off with and is very well priced. The knife is super maneuverable and can handle anything, from the heat of a professional kitchen to preparing a simple meal for one.
- The edge is painstakingly hand sharpened to 16-18 degrees per side, maintaining the perfect balance between blade sharpness and maximum resilience.
- The ergonomic handle shape provides maximum comfort, grip, and maneuverability.
- This knife cleans easily and is very simple to maintain.
- If you are a seasoned chef or are someone that works on large meal preps often, you might want to go for a longer blade that will help you work faster.
- You could go for a longer blade if you slice up large quantities of meat. While this knife can be used to tackle meat, you won’t be able to achieve clean long cuts of meat because of the short blade.
4. Corner Cutting Board- Teak Wood | Dalstrong
Make meal prep a breeze with this cutting board that acts as the perfect base for all your chopping, mining, cutting, and slicing purposes. This board is crafted with 100% sustainably sourced Tropical Teak Wood which is known for its impressive moisture resistance and durability.
- Designed to reclaim space, this board fits snugly into the inner corner of your countertop to assist with everyday chopping and cutting tasks.
- The wood used to make this board is hard enough to offer clean, precision cuts with enough “give” to maintain your knife’s sharpness after every use.
- Wood is natural antibacterial properties, and the tight-wood grain ensures a long-lasting hygienic cutting surface that is ideal for wet environments like a professional kitchen.
- The board does not come with side handles that can make it difficult to lift and move the cutting board around.
- This board demands a little care as you need to wash the board by hand and immediately fry it after every single use.This ensures that no bacteria will build up on your cutting surface.
This apron is designed with premium, rugged material and is built to outlast you in the heat of the kitchen. While making fried rice isn’t a messy process, it is always a good idea to have an apron on to protect yourself from unwanted kitchen messes.
- The apron features two chest pockets for easy, convenient storage of your markers, pens, phone, and notepad. It also has two generously sized outer front pockets, a kangaroo pocket, and towel and tong loops.
- The adjustable leather cross-back harness is built for practicality and evenly distributes weight across your shoulders, preventing neck strain.
- The super durable waxed canvas of the apron comes with a water repellent coating, and it is as stylish as it is functional.
- If you are looking for something to protect you from the BBQ heat, you can go for a more heavy-duty apron, specifically designed to keep all your BBQ needs in mind.
- If you don’t cook as often, you can go for a more simple apron. You can check out more options from our Apron Collection here.
3. Recipe: Quick and Easy Fried Rice
Let’s take a look at one of my go-to Fried Rice recipes that is not only delicious but can be made in less than 20 minutes.
- 3 tablespoons butter (divided)
- 2 Large Eggs (whisked)
- 2 Medium Carrots (peeled and diced)
- 1 Small White Onion (diced)
- ½ cup Frozen Peas
- 2 cloves Garlic (minced)
- Salt (add to taste)
- Black Pepper (Add to taste)
- 4 cups cooked and chilled rice
- 3 Green Onions (thinly sliced)
- 3-4 tablespoons Soy Sauce (adjust to taste)
- 2 teaspoons Oyster Sauce (optional)
- ½ teaspoon Toasted Sesame Oil
- Set up the cooking station. Assemble all the tools listed above and set up the cooking station.
- Heat butter. Heat ½ tablespoon of butter in a large wok or saute pan over medium-high heat until melted.
- Scramble eggs. Add whisked eggs to the pan or wok and cook until scrambled. Remove the scrambled egg and transfer it to a plate.
- Saute vegetables. Add a tablespoon of butter and heat until melted. Add carrots, onions, peas, and garlic, and season with a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Saute this for about 5 minutes or until the onions and carrots begin to soften.
- Add rice and sauce. Increase the heat to high, add in the remaining 1½ tablespoons of butter, and store until melted. Add rice, green onions, soy sauce, and oyster sauce immediately and stir until combined. Continue sauteing for an additional 3 minutes to fry the rice. If you like a crisp texture, you can let the rice rest for a bit between stirs so it can crisp up on the bottom.
- Add scrambled eggs. Add the scrambled eggs that you cooked and set aside earlier. Fry the eggs and stir this into the rice and combine well.
- Serve immediately. Remove the wok from heat and stir in the sesame oil until combined. You can also add extra soy sauce if you prefer. Serve piping hot or refrigerate it for a later meal.
4. Nutrition Facts
- Calories: 320kcal
- Total Fat: 13g
- Saturated Fat: 2g
- Cholesterol: 62mg
- Sodium: 307mg
- Total Carbohydrates: 43g
- Dietary Fibers: 4g
- Total Sugars: 5g
- Protein: 8g
- Vitamin C: 9mg
- Calcium: 57mg
- Iron: 3mg
- Potassium: 274mg
5. Easy Fried Rice Variations
Your fried rice can be whatever you want it to be. Here are a few delicious variations to your classic fried rice that will take your leftover rice meal to the next level.
Pulled Pork Fried Rice:
- Freshly Ground Black Pepper or White Pepper
- 3 Eggs
- 1 cup Pulled Pork
- 2 cups Rice (preferably day-old rice)
- 1 cup Frozen Peas (can be fresh also)
- 1 Jalapeno (sliced)
- Sriracha (if you like it spicy)
- Crack and whisk eggs in a bowl. Add salt and black pepper.
- Heat up oil over high heat in a large saute pan or wok. Scramble the eggs until mostly set but still slightly runny. The eggs will cook a bit more once you fry all the ingredients together.
- Remove and set aside.
- If the skillet dries up, add a tiny bit more oil, and then add the pulled pork. Fry over medium-high until crispy.
- Fry the rice and stir occasionally. Break up the rice until the rice is crispy and heated through.
- Add the eggs, peas, and sliced jalapenos into the skillet and fry and mix until everything’s evenly distributed.
- Taste and season with salt and pepper. Serve with sriracha on the side for some extra spice.
Note: You can also use minced pork for this recipe.
Kimchi Fried Rice:
- 1 cup Kimchi (ideally two days old. If not, add ½ tsp rice vinegar to make it sour)
- 150g Bacon (cut into thumbnail size pieces)
- 1 pack of Enoki Mushrooms (root removed, rinsed, and drained)
- 3 cups Steamed Short Grain Rice (if freshly cooked, leave it out for 5-10 mins at room temperature to cool down)
- 4 pcs Etrax-large Eggs (cooked sunny side up or scrambled)
- ½ Teaspoon Garlic (minced)
- ¼ cup Kimchi Juice (see *Note)
- ½ Tablespoon Sesame Oil
- 1 Tablespoon Cooking Oil
- 1 Tablespoon Toasted Sesame Seeds (to garnish)
- ½ Stalk Green Onion (thinly sliced, use to garnish)
- Roasted Sesame Seaweed (shredded)
*Note: This is the juice that you find at the bottom of your kimchi container. If your kimchi is fairly new, it might be difficult to obtain ¼ cup of it. In that case, use 2½ tablespoons of Kimchi Juice and 1 Tablespoon of Gochujang. If you want to skip the spice, you can also add 1 tablespoon of Soy Sauce to the kimchi juice.
Preheat a pan/wok on medium-high heat. Once heated, add cooking oil and spread it with a spatula.
Add garlic and stir it fast for about 10 seconds. Then throw in the bacon and stir it well until half of it is cooked.
- Add the Kimchi and stir until 80% of it is cooked.
Add the mushrooms and mix them well for a few seconds. Reduce the heat to medium-low.
- Add the rice and the kimchi juice. Mix everything well together.
Now add the sesame oil and mix it up.
Remove the rice from heat.
Plate the Kimchi fried rice and garnish it with some sesame seeds, green onions, and seaweed strips.
Place the cooked egg on top of this.
Serve hot, and enjoy!
6. Tips For Making The Best Fried Rice
Use chilled cooked rice:
A newly cooked rice is not ideal for fried rice. It will not fry well when it hits the hot pan and will result in soggy, sticky clumps of rice. For the best fried rice texture, I recommend using refrigerated rice, preferably cold rice.
However, if you want to make it instantly, cook up a fresh batch of rice, spread it on a baking sheet or any large flat pan, drape the rice with plastic wrap and then cool in the fridge for about 30 minutes or freezer for 10-15 minutes. Remember, you want to chill rice, not frozen.
Butter is best:
When it comes to making fried rice, use butter over any cooking oil. Butter helps brown and fry all the ingredients beautifully and also tastes SO MUCH BETTER than any other cooking oil.
Toasted sesame oil and oyster sauce are game-changers:
All right, if you do not eat seafood, you can leave out the oyster sauce, but if you do, I highly recommend adding it. A tiny bit of oyster sauce makes such a big difference in the flavor of your fried rice.
However, toasted sesame oil is non-negotiable. It smells absolutely wonderful and also adds a lovely boost of flavor to your fried rice. But do keep in mind that sesame oil is a finishing oil and not a cooking oil. Remove the pan from heat and then stir it in.
7. Storing Leftover Fried Rice
- To maximize the shelf life of leftover fried rice, refrigerate the fried rice in an airtight container. Properly stored fried rice can last for 5-7 days in the refrigerator.
- To make your fried rice last longer, freeze it in a covered airtight container or heavy-duty freezer bags. If stored properly, it should maintain the best quality for about six months but will remain safe beyond that time.
- Any leftover fried rice thawed in the fridge can be kept for additional 3-4 more days in the refrigerator before cooking. However, if the rice was thawed in the microwave or cold water, it should be eaten immediately.
- If leftover fried rice develops an off odor, flavor, or appearance, or if molds appear, discard it immediately.
8. Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best-kept secret to good fried rice?
Use cold leftover rice. Used medium to long grain rice. You can also use jasmine rice. Use a blazing hot wok or saute pan. Use a big wok or saute pan. Don’t overdo it with the seasoning. Add a little and then adjust individually by adding more soy sauce or chili sauce.
What is the secret ingredient in Chinese fried rice?
A lot of Chinese restaurants use chicken broth, stock, or powder to add flavor to the fried rice.
What makes Chinese fried rice taste so good?
The most important sauces to add are soy sauce and oyster sauce. The toasted sesame seed oil also helps boost flavor dramatically.