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

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.

Saute onions, carrots and peas for fried rice

How to make fried rice

How To Stir Fry 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!

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 a boneless pork chop in a separate sauté pan while making your fried rice.  Then 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:

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Fried Rice

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!


  • 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
  • 3-4 tablespoons soy sauce, or more to taste
  • 2 teaspoons oyster sauce (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil


  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.
All images and text ©

If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #gimmesomeoven. I'd love to see what you cook!

The BEST Easy Fried Rice Recipe

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935 comments on “Fried Rice”

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  1. Why is people still afraid of Butter!? Saturated Fat, unlike common believe, is NOT bad for you! Look at other Wildlife, right outside your window… If people should worry about Bad Fat, Vegetable Oil’s is there to kill you!!!

    Oh and don’t ever put hot Food inside a Fridge or Freezer, unless it is the only thing IN the Frige or Freezer…

  2. So yummy!!! 
    Thanks for the recipe!!

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  6. Love this recipe! It’s become a staple at our house.
    I attend a ladies Bible study group of senior citizens. We have monthly brunches to celebrate birthdays, this is my go-to contribution. I add chicken to give it some added protein that they may be missing in their diet. It’s always a favorite. I make lots so they can take some home as well.
    This month I’m printing the recipe for them to make at home.
    Thank you, thank you, thank you!
    And my ladies thank you too!

  7. Thanks for the recipe. Trying it this weekend and can’t wait to see how it tastes. :)

    I do have one request, however. Please remove the video from the “Print” feature. It forces the recipe to bleed over onto the second page and splits it up awkwardly, which is quite annoying. And the video doesn’t help at all on the printout, so doesn’t have any use there.

    • We hope you enjoy it, Bryant! I will email Ali about the printer issues — thanks for the heads up!

  8. Hello GSO!
    First of all, I made your recipe and loved it! Thank you!! Second, I wanted to point your attention to something I’m sure was unintentional but something I thought you might like to know for future posts. In Japanese (and I assume in Chinese as well) culture, sticking chopsticks in a bowl of rice straight up or to the side like you have pictured here and in a few other photos/recipes I noticed, is considered extremely rude and cringe-worthy, as rice is a sacred food in Asian countries and the chopsticks represent incense, which symbolize death and mourning. Incense are used to honor the dead and are used on a near-daily basis. I am 100% sure you were trying to simply compose a beautiful photo, but I wanted you to be aware that it could potentially come off as culturally insensitive, which I’m sure is not your intent. I hope this didn’t come off as condescending Or angry, since it is truly coming from a place of awareness and understanding :) I love your posts and follow you here and on Instagram. Thanks so much for all you do! – Lisa 

    • Thank you for letting me know, Lisa! I will try to re-shoot that recipe soon — definitely did not mean to offend anyone. I really appreciate you letting me know. :)

  9. This rice was fabulous!!

  10. This was great….the butter was unique twist and made it toasty delish……

  11. Pretty yummy! We felt the rice need an extra egg and a bit more flavour. 

  12. Thank you so much for this recipe. This was my first attempt at fried rice. I love your humor filled comments and suggestions which were very helpful and it turned out awesome!!! I doubled the eggs as I love eggs in my fried rice. I wish I had made a “double batch”…I was forced to share with my daughter so next time I will make more for sure!! Again thank you sooo much!!! Absolutely the best!! Sandie

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  14. Hi!
    I’m from Germany, but I love trying “american” recipes. This is the first new recipe my boyfriend had aboluteley nothing to gripe about! So it was a huge success!!! Thank you!

    • Hi Julia! We’re so happy you both enjoyed this — thank you for giving it a try, and for your sweet comment! :)

  15. This turned out incredibly delicious!! Thank you, for this KEEPER recipe!!

  16. I just made this meal for dinner and only a few bites in, I’m regretting that I didn’t make more! It has a wonderful creamy texture and no one flavor overwhelms any other. …My husband just came in the room to tell me dinner was delicious! Every time I’ve made fried rice in the past, it’s ended up dry and bland. I’m so glad I found this recipe!

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  18. I LOVE this dish! It totally scratches my Chinese-takeout itch! One question: have ou ever tried to make it with cauliflower rice? Trying to cut the carbs… Just curious! Thanks for all yhe delicious recipe! You have never steered me wrong!

    • Thank you, Chrissy, we’re so glad you enjoy it! We haven’t tried this with cauliflower rice, but we think that sounds yummy and that it’s definitely worth trying — if you give it a go, let us know how it turns out! :)

  19. Hi, Thanks for the recipe, it worked much better than my last attempt. My rice sort of clumped together though, any idea what I did wrong?

    • Hi Molly! It sounds like the rice might have overcooked a bit? Did you try fluffing it with a fork after it finished cooking? Doing that and letting it cool some if you can should help prevent it from clumping up like that. We hope this helps!

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  21. Loved this recipe! I left out the oyster sauce and added an extra clove of garlic. My family and I are taking on a new adventure called the Real Food Adventure. In short, we’re trying to eat real food! Your recipe fit the bill and went great with my chicken chips. I blogged about it and added your link to my post.

    Thanks so much for this fabulous recipe!

    • We’re so glad you enjoy it, Sarah! And you are so sweet to mention GSO on your lovely blog — we appreciate you sharing with us!

  22. Hello I love this and will be making it for sure. Looks delish! I  too prefer short grain rice but have not had good results with it :( hope you can offer some tips.  I bought short grain sushi rice rinsed it till barely cloudy then soaked it for 30 minutes. In fridge overnight horrible gloppy. What can I do? What brand do you use and how do you prepare it? Any tips greatly appreciated.  Thank you!

    • Hi Sarah! It sounds like sushi rice isn’t the best kind of rice to use for this (it’s soooo sticky and has a ton of starch). We like Bob’s Red Mill, and we just prepare it according to the package instructions. We hope this helps!

  23. I’ve made a bunch of fried rice recipes looking for something even close to my favorite takeout. This is it!

  24. I have to make this for about 50 people, how many batches do you think that I need to make?

    • Hi Ann! To have enough to serve 50, we would make 10 batches. We hope this helps!

  25. HI after incorrectly posting comment  on   the  French onion soup recipe I am now posting on the right recipe ;) . I  want to make this recipe with short grain rice. No luck with it. I wash  till almost clear and soak 30 minutes and into fridge overnight. The rice I use is Sushi short grain organic.   When out of fridge it is very gloppy and cannot be used for fried rice.  I’ve tried a few times but no luck. I hope you can give tips and maybe a specific brand. Any help would be great. I  so want to make this recipe. It looks delish! Thank you.

  26. Hi Hayley is Bob’s red mill rice short grain? 

  27. Thank you so much for all your help!

  28. This recipe makes the best fried rice I’ve ever made at home! Thank you. I made a few little changes – my partner is deathly allergic to shellfish, so, being cautious, I used Hoisin sauce instead of the Oyster sauce, even though I’ve read that most Oyster sauce doesn’t contain shellfish. I also used frozen, shelled edamame instead of peas, and threw in a few pieces of broccoli and a splash of Sriracha. Yum!

    • Thank you, Bonnie — we’re so happy you enjoy it, and we love that you used edamame in this!

  29. I tried it but ommited the onions this is gonna be my choice for fried rice now.
    My family enjoys it especially the kids who are very picky eatters so this is a +.Thanks for the recipe gimme some oven its greatly appreciated.

  30. I just made this today.  Fabulous!  I added char sui today but can’t wait to experiment with shrimp and tofu.  

    • Thanks for sharing, Stephanie — we’re so glad you enjoyed it!

  31. Have you ever made chicken lomein that taste like takeout. If so can I get the recipe. I hsve been trying for years to replicate it and I get close but no cigar. The chinesse sherry and vinegar but maybe the measurements are off. Not

  32. How small should one cut up the carrots to cook in 5-10 min, I make this (I think it is your recipe) with quinoa instead of rice, and the carrots take forever. I do “dice” them up about the size of your fingernail…I usually end up covering it for a few min at the end of the cook time to help “steam” the carrots before adding quinoa/rice etc.

  33. This recipe looks so appetizing and easy to make ! I will definitely try it. But where can i find TOASTED sesame oil ? I live in Bangkok, Thailand and I only have plain sesame oil. Will it be as good or not with plain sesame oil ?

    • Thanks, Madeleine, we hope you enjoy it! Toasted sesame oil just has more flavor (like how when you toast nuts, they have more flavor than un-toasted nuts). Regular sesame oil will be fine though. :)

  34. Ali, I have been living in South East Asia (China, Japan and now Thailand) and Lisa is absolutely right about the position of the chopsticks; they should be placed on top of the bowl, closely together.

  35. i just followed your recipe and it turned out perfect! best fried rice i’ve made. thanks for the simple but well tested/balanced recipes!

  36. So loved this for dinner tonight! My first time making fried rice …. Delicious! 

  37. OMG!!!!  This recipe is spot-on!!!  I did add some chicken chunks that we had sautéed and added back in when we added the eggs and sesame oil.
    We’ve tried and failed with a lot of fried rice recipes but this was awesome!!!!!  Thanks for sharing!!!!!!❤️❤️❤️

  38. Thank you so much. I too am a fried rice junkie. I have search high and low for a good recipe. Search is over. This it it!  Although I didn’t have oyster sauce the sesame oil made it perfection. Thanks again!

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  40. This recipe is divine!!!  My whole family loves it. I didn’t add the oyster sauce, but may still try it. 

  41. Best fried rice recipe. Omitted egg, can’t eat them. The sesame oil and oyster sauce was the needed ingredient. Ty so much!

  42. Thanks so much for all the tips, my daughter and i read through all of them and it made such a difference! finally can make amazing fried rice at home and not worry about what is put in it! thanks for the great recipe, everyone loved it! i’m a decent cook, but never been able to replicate chinese take away. yay!!!

  43. I made this, changed some thing to suit what I had on hand. I used sesame oil instead of butter. I did not add peas, or white onion. I added chopped green onions with the carrots, also chopped ham. I had no oyster sauce. I halved the recipe because I was using last nights pint of take out white rice.. I love it!

    • Thanks for sharing, Pat, we’re glad you were able to make this with some adaptations and that you loved it! :)

  44. This was a great recipe for it’s information and the end product was loved by my family. The one problem I had was the lack of flavor since my family isn’t crazy for soy sauce I had to add about a tsp of salt. I also added some orange juice (going for an oriental flavor) while cooking the veggies when they started sticking to my pan.

    But like I said the family loved it! Thank you :)

    • Thanks for sharing, Kirra, we’re so glad you and your family enjoyed it!

  45. So easy and delicious!!

    Rating: 5
  46. Made this recipe very good, except for the fact that I can never get my rice to be fried, without being
    slightly sticky. Followed receipt to a tee. Am I doing something wrong,should I do something different.
    Any suggestions???

    • Hi Nicole! Fried rice tends to work best (and not be as sticky) if you use day-old cooked rice (or older). Freshly cooked rice has a lot of moisture in it. We hope this helps, and here are some other tips we found:

  47. It’s so flavorful and so fresh! I’ve made it a few times! Thank you for sharing the recipe.

    Rating: 5
  48. Great recipe. You are so right. The secret to the recipe is the cooked rice that has been cooled.

    Rating: 5