This chicken fried rice recipe is one of the simplest weeknight dinners to add to your menu rotation. The hearty rice is mixed with veggies and protein and finished with an authentic sauce. You can’t go wrong with this delicious combination!
Chicken Fried Rice Recipe
Chicken fried rice is a classic dish served at most Asian restaurants. You can easily recreate it at home in just 30 minutes! The tender chicken, fluffy rice, and flavorful sauce will wow even the pickiest eaters in your home. Plus, you get to control all the ingredients that go into the dish, making it far better for you and your family than ordering takeout!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Simple ingredients. The recipe calls for the most basic ingredients you most likely already have on hand.
- Meal prepping. This a fantastic recipe to divide and enjoy throughout the week.
- Crowd-pleasing. The best dish for serving company!
- Use up veggies. The perfect way to use up leftover rice and clear out vegetables from your fridge.
- Homecooked is best. Homemade, but restaurant-style meal!
Chicken Fried Rice Ingredients
The ingredients for this fried rice with chicken are kitchen staples, no need to grocery shop for specialty items.
- Basmati Rice- the best rice for fried rice is a day-old, long-grain rice. We used basmati rice but you can substitute it for your favorite long-grain rice.
- Chicken- use boneless skinless chicken breasts or skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces.
- Carrots- grated or julienned will work. We use this grater for everything.
- Eggs- a classic addition to fried rice that brings in delicious savory flavor to the rice.
- Garlic- to flavor the fried rice.
- Green onion- chopped up as an optional garnish for the rice.
- Seasonings- the basic salt and pepper are all you need to season the chicken.
- Sesame oil- this is the secret to the authentic, nutty flavor loved in fried rice.
- Soy sauce- adds Chinese flavor with notes of saltiness and umami.
- For a full list of ingredients and quantities, see the recipe card below.
How to Make Chicken Fried Rice
This recipe is an easy stovetop meal that’s restaurant quality, yet simpler than you’d think to make at home. We recommend prepping your ingredients before you get started.
- Cook rice: Cook rice using your favorite cooking method or according to package instructions.
- Prep and cook chicken: Cook the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Heat a skillet or wok over medium-high heat with 1 teaspoon oil. When the pan is hot, add the chicken and season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook until fully cooked through and golden brown. Remove chicken onto a plate and cover to keep warm.
- Saute carrots: To the same pan, add a tablespoon of butter along with the carrots. Saute until soft. Remove from the skillet and add to the chicken.
- Scramble eggs: Add another tablespoon of butter to the skillet. Add the eggs and scramble, stirring as needed.
- Recombine: Add the chicken and carrots back into the eggs and stir to incorporate. Add the minced garlic and cook until fragrant.
- Add rice: Add rice and mix gently to combine all the ingredients.
- Prep sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together the sesame oil, soy sauce, and water for the sauce.
- Add sauce: Add the sauce to the fried rice. Stir together to evenly distribute the sauce.
- Serve and enjoy, friends!
Substitutions and Variations
This fried rice recipe is traditionally made with chicken but can be switched to suit your preferences.
- Different protein: You can make rice with shrimp, beef, pork, or ham. Keep in mind that the cooking time will differ depending on what protein you use.
- Swap veggies: Fried rice is very forgiving, you can not go wrong with your choice of veggies. Add in peas, green beans, corn, broccoli, or even zucchini.
- Different rice: Substitute the basmati white rice for classic long-grain rice, brown rice, or even cauliflower rice.
This recipe is satisfying when enjoyed as a stand-alone meal, but it also pairs perfectly with a variety of sides. Here are some recommendations:
- Side salad: Add some freshness with a kani cucumber salad or with a creamy cabbage salad.
- Appetizers: Serve the rice with a traditional appetizer side such as pork potstickers or your favorite spring rolls.
If you didn’t cook rice the day before, you can use freshly cooked rice in a pinch. Simply cook the rice, spread it out on a sheet pan, and let it cool for 1-2 hours before using it in the fried rice recipe.
The flavor of freshly cooked basmati rice is best, but you can use instant rice in a pinch. The results will be slightly different.
If the cooked rice did not cool enough before using it in the fried rice recipe, the rice may turn out sticky. Allow rice to cool to room temperature, or better yet, use day-old, refrigerated rice. Also, the rice may have been overcooked.
Store & Freeze
- Storage. Leftovers store well in the fridge for up to 4 days, making it a great meal to meal-prep!
- Freeze. Allow the rice to cool completely. Then, place into a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw and reheat to serve.
- Reheat. Reheat on the stovetop over low heat until warm, or microwave until reheated.
More Rice Recipes
Easy Chicken Fried Rice
- 1 1/2 cup basmati rice, uncooked
- 3 cups water
- 1 lb chicken breast, boneless skinless
- 2 carrots, grated
- 2 large eggs
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp oil
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
- green onion, to taste
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 tsp sesame oil
- 1/3 cup soy sauce
- 3 Tbsp water
- In a casserole dish combine the rice and 3 cups water. Cook at 400F for 25-30 minutes (rice is ready when fluffy). Fluff rice, set aside to cool.
- In a skillet with 1 tsp oil cook the chicken until golden and fully cooked. Lightly season with salt and pepper.
- Remove the chicken from pan. Add 1 Tbsp butter with the carrots. Sauté over medium heat until fully cooked. Remove carrots (add to chicken).
- Add 1 Tbsp butter and scramble the eggs, stirring as needed.
- Add the chicken and carrots back to the skillet with garlic, stir to incorporate.
- Add rice and stir.
- In a small bowl, combine ingredients for the sauce. Pour sauce into skillet. Add green onion. Fry another 2-3 minutes, stirring as needed.