Gimme Some Oven

Fried Rice

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This Chinese-inspired fried rice recipe is my absolute fave. It’s quick and easy to make, customizable with any of your favorite mix-ins, and so irresistibly delicious.

The BEST Fried Rice Recipe from Gimme Some Oven

Hey friends! I’m digging back into the blog archives today to share one of my all-time favorite recipes.

My favorite homemade fried rice. ♡

Growing up, our family had a tradition of eating lunch every Saturday at our neighborhood’s favorite local Chinese restaurant. And every single Saturday for lunch, I ordered the same thing — egg drop soup and fried rice, my absolute favorites. This restaurant set the bar high for me early when it comes to how amazing fried rice could be. Theirs was always perfectly al dente with slightly crispy edges, full of rich savory flavors, and loaded up with plenty of extra veggies, eggs, and whatever protein sounded good.

After our favorite restaurant sadly closed over a decade ago, I spent years tinkering around with dozens and dozens of batches of fried rice, attempting to recreate a fried recipe that tasted as good as theirs. And while nothing will ever match the original in my book, this fried rice recipe that I’ve landed on is as close as I’ve come and has been my favorite go-to ever since. It’s surprisingly speedy to make, easy to customize with your favorite add-ins, and SO flavorful and comforting. Thousands of our readers have also made and enjoyed it over the years since. So if you’re looking for a good recipe to try, I hope you’ll enjoy it too.

Let’s make some homemade fried rice!

Fried Rice Recipe | 1-Minute Video

Tips For Making The Best Fried Rice:

Ok, let’s get right to it. Here are the important things I have learned over the years about how to make the best fried rice.

1) Use cold rice: You’ve gotta plan ahead and use thoroughly-chilled cooked rice. A fresh batch of warm (or even lukewarm) rice will not fry well when it hits the hot pan, and will result in soggy and sticky clumps — no good. So leftover refrigerated rice is ideal! Or, if you are in a hurry (or have an impulse craving for fried rice, which I completely understand ?), just cook up a fresh batch of rice. Then spread it out on a baking sheet or another large flat pan, drape the rice with a layer of plastic wrap, then pop it in the fridge for 30 minutes (or in the freezer for 10-15 minutes) until it is thoroughly chilled (not frozen).

2) Use butter: Yes, butter. I have made many a batch of fried rice using various oils, and I’m now convinced there’s a reason why Japanese steak houses use that big slab of butter when they’re making fried rice. It just tastes so much better, and also makes everything brown up perfectly. (Although by contrast to Japanese steak houses, we only use 3 tablespoons for a large batch of rice in this recipe.)

3) Use veggies: This is one of my big pet peeves with lame take-out fried rice — not enough veggies! In addition to adding some nice spots of color, veggies go a long way in adding some flavor and freshness to fried rice. Our local Chinese restaurant always added both white and green onions, too, which I included in this recipe. But feel free to modernize this recipe with some other delicious stir-fried veggies as well!

4)  Use toasted sesame oil and oyster sauce: If you do not eat seafood, you can leave out the oyster sauce and your fried rice will still be great. But this ingredient makes such a difference in good fried rice, and a little goes a long way. So even if you’re not into oysters, don’t be scared of oyster sauce! Toasted sesame oil, on the other hand, is 100% non-negotiable. It is my favorite smelling ingredient in my kitchen, and tastes wonderful in fried rice. (Also note that sesame oil is meant as a finishing oil, not a cooking oil, so remove the pan from the heat and then stir it in.)

5) Use high heat: This will help fry and brown the rice and veggies well, and will also help prevent the rice from steaming in the pan instead of frying.

6) Let the rice brown a bit on the bottom: If you’re like me and love your rice to be a bit crispy, let it rest for a bit in between stirs so that it can brown a bit on the bottom. It also helps greatly to use a non-stick skillet so that the rice doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.

7) Don’t be afraid to add in some extra soy sauce at the end: I know that everyone has different sensitivities to salt, and different brands of soy sauce also contain pretty dramatically different levels of sodium. So I went a little light on soy sauce in the recipe below. But please add more at the end if this tastes good to you. I almost always stir an extra drizzle into my portion and love it.

Homemade Fried Rice Recipe

Homemade Fried Rice Ingredients:

Alright, so let’s talk ingredients. To make this fried rice recipe, you will need (affiliate links included):

  • Cooked, chilled rice: Any kind of white or brown rice will do. Just be sure that it is cooked (I always cook mine in this rice cooker, which works like a charm) and thoroughly chilled (in a sealed container in the refrigerator) before adding it to your hot skillet. Again, freshly-cooked rice will not work well in this recipe.
  • Eggs: Which add great flavor, texture and protein.
  • Carrots, onions, green onions and peas: This is the base mix of veggies that I always use for fried rice, but feel free to add in other stir-fry veggies you love (see ideas below).
  • Garlic: Freshly-minced.
  • Soy sauce: I created this recipe using low-sodium soy sauce. So add less if you’re using traditional soy sauce.
  • Oyster sauce: This is a major flavor booster in fried rice and (don’t worry) doesn’t taste like oysters. You can find it in the Asian section of grocery stores, or order it on Amazon. 
  • Toasted sesame oil: The finishing touch in this recipe, which is a must. You can also find it in the Asian section of grocery stores, or order it on Amazon.
  • Butter: My favorite way to stir fry rice.

How To Make Fried Rice | Sauté onions, carrots and peas

How To Make Fried Rice | Be sure to start with cold rice

How To Make Stir Fried Rice

How To Make Fried Rice:

To make this homemade fried rice recipe, simply:

  1. Scramble your eggs: Using a small pat of butter, scramble some eggs in a large sauté pan, breaking them into small pieces as you go. Then transfer the eggs to a separate plate, and set aside.
  2. Sauté your veggies and garlic: Return your sauté pan to the heat, and sauté the onions, carrots, peas and garlic until soft and cooked through.
  3. Stir fry rice: Then turn the burner to high heat. Scooch the veggies over to one side of the pan, melt the remaining butter in the other half, and add the chilled rice, soy sauce, and oyster sauce (if using). Then stir to combine with the veggies and continue sautéing the rice, stirring every 15-20 seconds or so for 3 minutes, or until you notice the rice and veggies starting to brown slightly.
  4. Remove pan from heat. And stir in your green onions, sesame oil, and scrambled eggs.
  5. Taste and season. Give the rice a taste, and season with salt and pepper, plus any extra soy sauce or sesame oil if needed.
  6. Serve! Then dish it up and serve nice and warm!

The BEST Fried Rice Recipe | Feel free to add chicken, beef, pork, shrimp or extra vegetables

Easy Fried Rice Variations:

The sky’s the limit when it comes to homemade fried rice variations, so feel free to get creative and use up other leftover ingredients you may happen to have on hand. That said, here are some classic add-ins:

  • Chicken Fried Rice: You can either sauté some chicken in a separate sauté pan while making your fried rice. Then shred or dice and add to your fried rice. Or for a shortcut, I like to shred a rotisserie chicken. Or even better, shred leftovers from my favorite baked chicken breasts recipe.
  • Pork Fried Rice: Sauté a boneless pork chop in a separate sauté pan while making your fried rice. Then dice and add to your rice.
  • Beef Fried Rice: Sauté steak or brown ground beef in a separate sauté pan while making your fried rice. Then crumble or dice and add to your rice.
  • Shrimp Fried Rice: Sauté half a pound of peeled, raw shrimp in separate sauté pan while making your fried rice. Then add the shrimp to your rice.
  • Vegetable Fried Rice: Any stir-fry friendly veggies would be great in fried rice! Just sauté at the same time that you cook the onions, carrots, peas and garlic. Then stir to combine with the fried rice.
  • Kimchi Fried Rice: Fresh kimchi adds a major flavor boost to fried rice. Just chop and stir it in to make kimchi fried rice.
  • Pineapple Fried Rice: Fresh pineapple can be traditional in Chinese or Thai fried rice. Just chop and stir it in to combine.

Also, in lieu of using traditional white rice in this recipe, feel free to make:

  • Fried Brown Rice: For a healthier twist, feel free to use cooked brown rice in this recipe instead of white rice.
  • Quinoa Fried Rice: Here is my favorite recipe.

What To Serve With Fried Rice:

Looking for inspiration? Some of my favorite recipes to serve with fried rice include:

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The BEST Fried Rice Recipe from Gimme Some Oven

Fried Rice

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 -6 servings 1x

Description

Learn how to make fried rice with this classic recipe. It only takes 15 minutes to make, it’s easy to customize with your favorite add-ins, and it’s SO flavorful and delicious!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 3 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2 eggs, whisked
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 small white onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • salt and black pepper
  • 4 cups cooked and chilled rice (I prefer short-grain white rice)
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 34 tablespoons soy sauce, or more to taste
  • 2 teaspoons oyster sauce (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil

Instructions

  1. Heat 1/2 tablespoon of butter in a large sauté pan* over medium-high heat until melted. Add egg, and cook until scrambled, stirring occasionally. Remove egg, and transfer to a separate plate.
  2. Add an additional 1 tablespoon butter to the pan and heat until melted. Add carrots, onion, peas and garlic, and season with a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Sauté for about 5 minutes or until the onion and carrots are soft. Increase heat to high, add in the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons of butter, and stir until melted. Immediately add the rice, green onions, soy sauce and oyster sauce (if using), and stir until combined. Continue sautéing for an additional 3 minutes to fry the rice, stirring occasionally.  (I like to let the rice rest for a bit between stirs so that it can crisp up on the bottom.)  Then add in the eggs and stir to combine. Remove from heat, and stir in the sesame oil until combined.  Taste and season with extra soy sauce, if needed.
  3. Serve immediately, or refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 3 days.


Notes

*Sauté pan: If you happen to own a nonstick or cast-iron pan, I would recommend it for this recipe.  But that said, any pan that you have can work — you may just have to be a bit more vigilant with stirring so that the rice and eggs don’t stick.

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2,022 comments on “Fried Rice”

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  1. Wow, this recipe is easy to understand. I will try to make it at home.

    • Amazing! Not gonna lie way better than I thought I used light soy sauce and seasoned my chicken with a little onion powder and garlic salt. But most importantly cook your rice the night before. I had mine refrigerated for six hours before making it and wish I had taken that extra step.

  2. I have made this recipe time and time again. It is great I put some General Tso sauce in it also give it a little Heat, I have added shrimp and chicken so far to the main base. And I use the bag of mixed frozen vegetables because that’s what I had and it was fine. I use a bag success rice.

    • I treat the vegetables like you treat the egg, set aside and let the rice cook alone in the pan. I’m going to continue in the same manner. I do however appreciate your advice about using cold previously cooked rice. The ouster sauce and toasted sesame seed oil are also tips I will try. I find you cook times stunningly short. What’s the deal with that?

  3. I cooked and chilled on the same day. Put it in the fridge for about 3 hours and it still not the right consistency, It is Yummy but not the right consistency is really soft :/ Any advice or tips?

    • Sheila, I chilled my rice by spreading it out on parchment paper on a large pizza pan (1/2 recipe – 2 cups rice), then covering with another sheet of parchment paper. Left it in fridge for about an hour – hour & 1/2 before frying. Worked well for me. I think the paper soaked up some of the moisture from the rice which helped with consistency.

    • A chef friend of mine always says to use cooked rice that has begun to dry out, and recommends chilling rice overnight in the fridge uncovered for crispier rice. Hope this helps!

    • Sheila, I usually make more rice than I need for a given meal, I then store the room temperature rice in a container in the fridge to use for fried rice later on. The rice dries out allowing the grains to separate and absorbed the liquid better. Hope this helps.

    • Soak rice for 10-15 mins than rinse until water runs clear. I always use a little less than 2 cups of water per 1 cup of rice when I cook it.

    • Sheila-
      Any advice on the consistency??! READ THE RECIPE. The recipe says multiple times to USE COLD RICE, USE DAY OLD RICE. Cook rice…refrigerate…make your fried rice the next day. Simple. My advice, read the whole article and recipe before trying something new.

  4. I’ve used this recipe a few times. My family loves it. I used edamame instead of peas and doubled up on the veggies and added shrimp.

  5. Best recipe I’ve tried! Flavours are spot on and my kids love it. Thanks!!

  6. Simple & tasty will definitely be cooking it again 🙂

  7. easily the best fried rice

  8. This recipe is super simple and straight to the point. I made this for my family and they love it evrytime. Im not a mom by the way :)

    • Mine came out perfectly! I wish I could upload a picture of it! I added some shrimp and subbed regular butter for I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter as a healthy alternative!

    • Benita, what are you? I think it’s fine you are not a mom. Personally, I just LOVE to cook and eat! Glad you replied!

  9. This was so delicious and easy to make. I used chicken in it this time but next time I will try shrimp. This will be my go-to fried rice recipe, it’s just about perfect.

  10. This fried rice is the Best!!!!!! The flavor is on point. It didn’t last past the second day. I love how butter is used instead of oil, it really makes a big difference! Along with all of the other ingredients, this is a most superb yet easy recipe. Thanks so much for sharing,

    • Soooooooo frigging AWESOME!! Added cooked diced pork, couple extra veggies (diced celery, baby carrots, water chestnuts). Day old refrigerated rice
      was the key, perfect texture (as well as the oyster sauce and sesame oil)!!

      Thank you!

  11. Followed the recipe and added shrimp! So delish!

  12. YUM! omg, so freaking good!!!!!! Nothing else to say except I used the Oyster sauce…

    Thank you!!

  13. I had high hopes for his recipe, however, after using day old chilled rice, and oyster sauce, it came out mushhyyy… ugh

  14. Seriously, Panda Express ain’t got sh%@ on this rice!!!
    Made this with a bag of Walmart frozen stir fry mix and yeah boy, this hit the spot.

  15. I am an addict. I’m addicted to this stir-fried rice, and always add shrimp. Amazing flavor!

  16. Though I’ve been making this dish for a very long time, and it’s fantastic, I keep forgetting to ask you: What brand of Oyster Sauce do you use? I have Lee Kum Kee brand I purchased from Amazon, but it makes the entire dish look really dark though I’ve cut it down to 1 teaspoon, yet still too dark. Oyster Sauce makes a big difference in flavor! Please email me with your advice, thank you!!!

  17. Excellent technique and recipe. It came out great.
    I substituted the butter with sesame oil and added a teaspoon of minced ginger to the sauté.

    Thank you

  18. This is the BEST fried rice recipe!! IT’S THE BUTTA BABY!!! it’s sooo good! This will be my go to recipe! Thank you!

  19. Made this tonight. It’s delicious.

  20. Oh my goodness, so yummy. A new favorite dish! Thank you.

  21. This recipe is fantabulous. My whole family loved it and I will definitely be cooking it again soon.

  22. I made a few tweaks that made this even better. No oyster sauce, added garlic chili paste. And plain distilled vinegar. The vinegar was a game changer. It really pulled it all together. I only added 4 tbsps to three cups of rice.

  23. Good suggestions.

  24. This is an absolutely delicious recipe! The only thing I don’t use is the oyster sauce. I spread the rice out on a parchment lined cookie sheet and pop in the freezer for about 15 to 20 mins. Also, I use the shredded frozen veggies.

  25. This is my go to fried rice recipe! Make sure to use the cold rice. I also like to add 1 tsp. Of sesame oil instead of 1/2.

  26. I used Ponzu rather than regular Soy, added that certain something..Oh, and a giant pinch of hot pepper flakes
    11/10

  27. very good ,thanks for taking the time to explain these recipes

  28. I just made this recipe. It is excellent!! I added more peas but otherwise followed the recipe as written. Not having any oyster sauce, I learned online that a 50/50 mix of soy sauce and hoisin sauce is a pretty good substitute. I tasted the rice before and after adding the toasted sesame oil, and believe me, the oil makes a huge difference! Next time I will make this recipe with shrimp. Thank you for posting this excellent recipe!!

  29. This is the best Fried Rice I’ve ever had. I made it exactly like the recipe. Great directions! It was so easy to make. I did add diced sweet red pepper and mushrooms. I used long grain white rice.

  30. Was so easy and delicious. I’ve made it twice since last week…once with leftover rice and once using the sheetpan chilling recommendation; cooking rice an hour before making fried rice.

  31. I have been making this recipe for years. I know it by heart. I make it my own by substituting peas with chopped bok choy and add crispy spam. An absolute favorite!

  32. I make this recipe over and over again. My boys love it. My son and his room mate make it in the form kitchen. They put all sorts of stuff in it… spam, steak, chicken.
    Love it!!

  33. Looks delicious! Can I use instant rice for this recipe?

  34. I’ve been making this recipe for my family & friends for the past 5.5 years and we LOVE IT!!! Definitely stands up to the claim of “better than take out!” However that being said, I use frozen carrots and peas, and I also add chicken. I make 4x the recipe (sometimes more LOL!) and just freeze it for future lunches or dinners. My daughter is always asking for the fried rice for her school lunch. It’s also really easy to bring to a potlucks, parties, girls night etc…. Always a HIT!! I’m actually making it right now

  35. Made per recipe. Added Trader Joe’s pancetta as meat.
    Didn’t need additional soy but added some sriracha for heat.
    Definitely a keeper. Thank you!

  36. Easy to make and excellent blend of flavors.

  37. This page was really helpful

  38. I would use less butter but that is just for my personal taste. I added frozen peas and carrots. That may or may not have helped overall. I couldn’t use any oyster sauce either because mine is gluten free and tastes off. I know that it would have added a world of difference though. I doubt that my soy free soy sauce changed anything. The egg part was way different then my usual fried rice dishes. I usually make room in the center of the pan, scramble the egg and mix it together. It was good though. I will use this recipe again but may make some changes (for example I didn’t use sort grain rice that was suggested). I only tried it tonight so I will have to contemplate on any needed changes. Go for it, everyone! This is easy. Prep first, of course.

  39. Very good! Used cast iron skillet with dripping from chicken leg quarters for eggs and cooked as written but didn’t have any oyster sauce. Sooo good! Just like a good Chinese restaurant. Saving this recipe!

  40. An excellent recipe to begin with. Following the recipe to the T is great. You can customize it absolutely anyway you wish with different veggies, more rice, less rice, hoisin rather than oyster sauce, hoisin plus oyster sauce, more eggs, fewer eggs, add grated ginger, any bits or pieces of protein you have in the fridge you can throw in this and it will be terrific. I always add more garlic and grated fresh ginger to give it some zing.

  41. This is a super awesome recipe we now have it every Wednesday and I have family coming back for more and never no leftovers 😉

  42. Amazing not gonna lie that was way better than I thought!!!!

  43. This is defintely the best recipe for fried rice! Made exactly and added chicken breast!butter does make a difference! Thank you for a great perfect recipe

  44. Tasty quick and easy stir fry that my fussy eater enjoyed! Have made this dish countless times now. Thank you for sharing this wonderful recipe : )

  45. Yum!!! I’ve made this quite a few times now! Thank you 😊

  46. I cooked this Fried Rice go to with my Chicken Stir Fry today. It was amazing. I will definitely pin this recipe for next time. I pampered my Mama for Mother’s Day both of my brothers came with their family. I’m not that good at deciding how much food to cook for a crowd. Needless to say I have a lot of Fried Rice leftover. I am going to freeze and vacuum seal it for a later dinner. I think it will work.
    Thank you for sharing

  47. It is OUTSTANDING and utterly amazing – better than I’ve ever had in any restaurant! The only thing I added was a touch of chili sauce for some heat and some additional veggies – mushrooms and cauliflower. We’re vegan and so I omitted the egg.

  48. I made this with cauliflower rice instead and it was really good

  49. I just made this recipe and it is fantastic, so yummy and filling! So easy to customize for picky eaters. This is definitely going into the weekly rotation.