Fried Rice

This Chinese restaurant-style fried rice recipe is the absolute BEST.  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 guys!  I’m digging back into the blog archives today to share one of my all-time favorite recipes with you again.  And I really do mean all-time.  

Because fried rice and I go wayyyy back.  😍

Like specifically, back to my picky-eating days that lasted — oh — until college, when I was totally “that girl” who refused to even look at anything else on the menu at a Chinese restaurant besides fried rice and my trusty egg drop soup.  Guys, I was crazy about my fried rice.  And this was thanks in large part to our amazing little neighborhood Chinese restaurant that knew how to fry up a mean batch of rice, and set the bar high for what I expected fried rice to be.  I mean, back then, I just assumed that all fried rice was perfectly stir-fried and full of big flavors and irresistibly delicious!  Little did I know about the painfully bland, boring, and tasteless stuff that I would encounter at too many other Chinese restaurants once I ventured out of the nest.  Even today, I still can’t believe it when I stumble across a bad batch.  Such a missed opportunity!

Anyway, I figured out pretty quickly once I left for college (in a small town with zero good fried rice) that this was a problem I was going to have to remedy in my own kitchen.  So over many years and literally dozens of test batches, I finally landed on my favorite recipe back in 2014 that has been my go-to ever since.  It’s surprisingly speedy to make, easy to customize with your favorite add-ins, and more flavorful and amazing than any take-out I’ve ever ordered.  And it’s all thanks to a few simple tips that hundreds of readers have agreed totally work.

Let’s make some homemade fried rice!  💛

The BEST 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 ol’ slab of butter when they’re making fried rice.  It just tastes so much better, and also makes everything brown up perfectly.  (Although don’t be scared — we only use 3 tablespoons for a very large batch of rice!)

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 and sticking together too much.

6) 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 fried rice, 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.
Chicken and Broccoli Stir-Fry to go with the BEST Fried Rice

This 12-Minute Chicken and Broccoli recipe pairs perfectly with fried rice.

What To Serve With Fried Rice:

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

Print
The BEST Fried Rice Recipe from Gimme Some Oven
4.9 from 253 reviews

The BEST 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!


Scale

Ingredients

  • 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 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 teaspoonoyster sauce (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoontoasted 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 stirring for an additional 3 minutes to fry the rice. Then add in the eggs and stir to combine. Remove from heat, and stir in the sesame oil until combined.
  3. Serve immediately, or refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 3 days.

The BEST Easy Fried Rice Recipe | Gimme Some Oven

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1,159 comments on “Fried Rice”

1 15 16 17
  1. 5 stars
    I made this and it was SOO good. I made too much rice (used brown) by accident ad I’m so glad I did so I can make more of this tomorrow. Thank you!!!!

  2. 5 stars
    I have been making this recipe for the last year or two. It is the best we have ever eaten. Thank you!

  3. 5 stars
    Amazing recipe!

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  5. 5 stars
    Very yummy! I love the addition of the oyster sauce. I also love how easy it was!! Thank you :)

  6. 5 stars
    I made it and it was great

  7. 5 stars
    I have tried so many times to make fried rice (which I LOVE) and failed. This time it turned out wonderfully!! I am so happy! Thank you! I used frozen veggies cause I was in a rush and added canned chicken.

  8. 5 stars
    Made this recipe 8/23/19 and wow was it delicious! The only adjustment made was the oyster sauce, not a big fan. Thank you for sharing this quick and delicious recipe.

  9. 5 stars
    I made this recipe last night. It was truly delicious! I opted for the shrimp version and doubled the amount of shrimp. My wife won’t eat peas so we left those out. Thanks for posting this.

  10. 5 stars
    This was amazing and so easy to make! I added in mushrooms with the other veggies because I love them. My husband hates peas so I almost left them out but decided to keep them in. He ate 3 full bowls! Thank you for this keeper recipe!!!!!!

  11. 5 stars
    Amazing. Best I’ve ever made. I added a Fresno pepper for a little heat, and and tenderloin (for my meat eating boys), but this recipe is what made it great.

  12. 5 stars
    I make this all the time. It is so easy with just a bag of frozen mixed veggies, onions, garlic and those awesome sauces! The sesame oil finish makes it all come together. And it’s great left over, cold, right out of the fridge at 11:00 pm, I’m just sayin’.

  13. 5 stars
    Highly highly recommend – usually fried rice recipes are bland, this is far from it. Put my own veggie mix in, and some chicken thighs that I had cooked. Truly awesome and SO easy and fast to throw together. Add this to your regular rotation!!

  14. 5 stars
    Looking for something both teens would eat without getting takeout. This fit the bill. Made it twice in two weeks! Yummy. I omitted peas and added red pepper and BBQ pork.

  15. 5 stars
    Ali, you are so right about the Oyster Sauce – it makes all the difference, giving it a richer taste without changing the basic flavor. I also used leftover brown rice and it was terrific!

  16. 5 stars
    I used a hack by buying a bag of frozen mixed veggies (corn, green beans, carrots, and peas) to save time! Delicious

  17. For the oyster sauce, there are lots of vegetarian “oyster” sauce and vegetarian “fish” sauces to use instead of those with actual oyster or fish.

  18. 5 stars
    Amazing fried rice, easy recipe and fairly quick. I follow the recipe as written but do add mushrooms and shrimp. Makes a decent amount; perfect for lunch the next day.

  19. 5 stars
    Thanks great recipe

  20. I can’t wait to try this recipe! Question: Can I use coconut aminos instead of soy sauce?

  21. 5 stars
    I’ve made this twice fo a very picky eater in my family and he loves loves it!!! It’s a winner!

  22. 5 stars
    I made this last night for dinner and the whole family LOVED it! The recipe was easy and quick which is just what I need for our crazy weeknights. I subbed coconut aminos for the soy sauce to make it soy/gluten free and it turned out perfectly. Thanks for the easy recipe!

  23. 5 stars
    It was good. Didn’t make as much as the recipe and will get the sesame oil for next time. Not as hard to make as I thought. I cooled the rice in the freezer. My husband was impressed.

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  25. 5 stars
    I’ve tried soo many fried rice recipes and this is the best! I really think the oyster sauce makes a difference and you’re onto something with the butter (vs oil). Thank you for an awesome recipe!

  26. 5 stars
    This is exce
    Great. I made it yesterday and will make it again tonight

  27. What are your thoughts on using fried rice seasoning mix?

  28. 5 stars
    Absolutely delicious! So simple…I tried another recipe, it was ok…but the oyster sauce and sesame oil is KEY to an authentic fried rice! Kudos to you !

  29. 5 stars
    Thanks for the inspiration!! 2nd time to make this in as many weeks and it is phenomenal. I added some frozen corn, stir fried chicken and water chestnuts.

  30. 5 stars
    Excellent!!!

  31. 5 stars
    I made this the other day and it was so so good! I added shrimp to it and my daughter who usually hates shrimp even loved it! I didn’t use oyster sauce but that’s only because I didn’t have it on hand. I’m going to add it the next time I make this. It was a family hit! Thank you!

  32. Pingback: Better than Take Out Fried Rice! | Autumn Becomes Me

  33. Question: should I use real butter or is margarin fine? I only have country crock atm…

  34. 5 stars
    Great flavor. Great hints and starting point for making the best fried rice.

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  36. I make this recipe alot. With different veggies and meat. Try it with turkey bacon! Too good!

  37. 5 stars
    I had a few pieces of ginger pork tenderloin and a ton of leftover rice. I mixed with frozen peas and carrots and a chopped onion and my kids devoured this! They wanted to know why there wasn’t more! I always have leftover rice so this will be my go to from now on!

  38. 5 stars
    so good

  39. 5 stars
    Delicious!! My husband loved it too. Had to make rice.. did it as you directed. Turned out fine. Thanks for the recipe. I’m sending it to my daughter.

  40. So I have this weird obsession with chicken fried rice in a box called chicken helper or Asian helper. I live in Cananda and we stopped selling it years ago up here so I would stock up heavily when I went to the states. Then it was off the market and I have never been able to make fried rice I liked as much as that one… Until now! This was amazing! The only difference I made was that I added chopped up chicken breast and chopped up ham (and I’m not sure if yours had chopped celery but I added some to mine) to it. The oyster, soy and sesame sauces blend perfectly together and taste excellent! Thanks so much for sharing your great recipe!

  41. Brilliant recipe!!! loved it and so did the clients :)

  42. 5 stars
    Love it! Super easy to make.

  43. 5 stars
    This recipe was yummy and very easy. I followed the recipe pretty closely and then added a few things. I had a left over egg foo yung patty and chopped that up and used some of the leftover sauce on top. Also had some leftover roast that I also added. It was a winner or our family! Thank you for sharing!

  44. 5 stars
    Made tonight but added red, yellow and orange bell peppers. I had all good reviews. Next time I’ll add even more veggies. Loved it.

  45. 5 stars
    The rice should be slightly chewy to begin with… not fluffy soft rice. And yes, let it sit overnight in fridge.
    Butter likely burns at high heat. Generally you can just use canola or peanut oil. But if you’re cooking at a lower temp, butter I guess works okay.
    They usually prepare fried rice with chicken stock. That’s likely the flavor you’re trying to re-create with butter.
    First just fry your protein with veggies in oil. Remove that. Then heat oil, fry the rice until well coated with oil. Then add chicken stock, cook stirring often until it absorbs well into rice/cooks off. Your iron or carbon steel wok should be very hot. This isn’t something you cook in some non-stick skillet, that non-stick coating stuff with burn off and be in your food.
    But yeah, the chicken stock is why you want chewy, dry rice so it can absorb the chicken stock to some degree.

  46. 5 stars
    I’ve made several attempts at homemade fried rice in the past, most of which were pleasantly mediocre. This however, is a game-changer! I don’t know if it was the butter or the timing, that I was starting with perfectly-cooked and cooled brown rice, or just that I’ve eaten enough restaurant/take-out fried rice in the intervening years -and cooked enough- to know what I like and to have picked up a skill or two; but this recipe, followed nearly to a T, turned out so good that I had far less left over than I should have. I couldn’t stop shoveling it into my face (and neither could my husband, which was a good sign, since he’s a little particular)! SO good!! Especially drizzled with the garlic chili oil I made awhile back. I could die now…

    My egg drop soup technique, on the other hand, still needs work. I was not a super-fan of the linked recipe… it could have been the stock I used, and for me @1tsp ginger was too much, it overpowered the whole dish, so I’ll have to revisit that one with a few modifications. It’s a good thing the fried rice will be in regular rotation now, I’ll have plenty of opportunity to perfect the soup.

    Thank you SO much for this brilliant fried rice recipe. It offered precisely the guidance I needed to make a simple, delicious, not altogether terrible-for-us meal that was in a lot of ways BETTER than take-out. I’ll also be adding it to a custom cookbook for my young adult daughter. Woot!

  47. 5 stars
    Delicious. This is on our meal rotation. Definitely make sure to have cold rice!

  48. 5 stars
    Excellent!!! I am allergic to eggs so left out and it was still so yummy! I used left over roasted chicken as well as diced sweet pepper out of my garden. This is an easy recipe that I will use often. My Husband had 3 servings it was that good!

  49. Would fish sauce be ok instead of oyster sauce? I only have fish sauce on hand. Cannot wait to make this!