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Fried Rice Dishes

Fried rice is a popular component of Asian cuisine, especially in Southeast Asia, where it is staple as Southeast Asian foods. It is made from steamed rice stir-fried in a wok, often with other ingredients, such as eggs, vegetables, and meat. It is sometimes served as the penultimate dish in Chinese banquets (just before dessert). As a home-cooked dish, fried rice typically is made with leftover ingredients from other dishes, leading to countless variations.

The many popular varieties of fried rice have their own specific list of ingredients. In Asia, the more famous varieties include Yangzhou and Fujian fried rice. Elsewhere, most restaurants catering to vegetarian or Muslim clientele have invented their own varieties of fried rice including egg fried rice, Malaysian (spicy) fried rice and the ubiquitous “special fried rice”.

Preparation of Fried Rice

Fried rice is made from cold rice already cooked by steaming. The use of leftover rice and other leftover ingredients is common when cooked at home. It is important to use leftover rice because the moisture in fresh rice will cause it to steam instead of fry. The oil may be seasoned with aromatics such as garlic before the rice and other ingredients are stir-fried together in a wok. The other ingredients used in fried rice are greatly varied. They can include eggs, meat (chicken, beef, or cured pork), seafood (shrimp or lobster), vegetables (carrots, broccoli, bean sprouts, celery, peas, corn), mushrooms, spices and peppers, and soy sauce or sometimes oyster sauce. The base of vegetable fried rice does not contain any meat or seafood; others are named for the primary addition (e.g., “chicken fried rice” or “shrimp fried rice”). Other “house” versions may contain several meats and seafoods. It is often stir-fried in a wok with vegetable oil or animal fat to prevent sticking, as well as for flavour. Onions, spring onion and garlic are often added for extra flavour. It is popularly eaten either as an accompaniment to another dish, or as a course by itself.

Popular garnishes include fried shallots, sprigs of parsley or coriander leaves, carrots carved into intricate shapes or sliced chilli sprinkled on top of the heaped rice.

Many food stands found on the streets across Southeast Asia serve fried rice with a selection of garnishes and side dishes that the customer can choose to add.

Common Variations of Fried Rice

AlphabeticalBy Country

Image Name Description
Arroz de Chaufa Cantonese Peruvian Style Fried Rice Arroz de Chaufa – Cantonese-Peruvian Style Fried Rice Chaufa rice is one of the main Chifa dishes, the delicious result of mixing Peruvian and Chinese cuisine. There are many combinations for chaufa rice.

View Arroz de Chaufa Recipe

Chaulafan de Pollo – Ecuadorian Chicken Fried Rice Chaulafan de Pollo – Ecuadorian Chicken Fried Rice Chaulafan is an Ecuadorian version of fried rice. In most major cities in Ecuador you will find chifas or Chinese restaurants which are usually the best places to eat chaulafan; you can either eat at the restaurant or get it as a takeaway meal.

View Chaulafan de Pollo Recipe

Hokkien or Fujian fried rice This variation of Chinese fried rice is from the Fujian region of China; it has a thick sauce poured and mixed over it. The sauce can include mushrooms, meat, vegetables, etc.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Bai cha A Khmer variation of fried rice, it includes diced Chinese sausage, garlic, soy sauce, and herbs usually eaten with pork.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Canton (or Mui Fan) A Cantonese dish of fried rice, typically dry

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

ChaHan or Yakimeshi This Chinese fried rice is suited to Japanese tastes, sometimes adding katsuobushi for flavour.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Yeung chow (or Yangzhou) fried rice This dish consisting of generous portions of shrimp and scrambled egg, along with barbecued pork. This is the most popular fried rice served in Chinese restaurants, commonly referred to simply as “special fried rice” or “house fried rice”.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Yuan yang fried rice Topped with two different types of sauce, it typically has a savoury white sauce on one half, and a red tomato-based sauce on the other half. Elaborated versions use the sauce to make ataichi (“yin-yang”) symbol.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Burmese fried rice (htamin gyaw) Normally uses Burmese fragrant rice which is short grain (rounder and shorter). A popular variety is a very plain version consisting of rice, boiled peas, onions, garlic and dark soy sauce. An accompanying condiment would bengapi kyaw (fried fish paste with shredded flakes) and fresh cucumber strips mixed with chopped onions, green chilli and vinegar.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Khao Phat – Thai Fried Rice This dish differs from Chinese fried rice is that it is prepared with Thai Jasmine rice instead of regular long-grain rice.

View Khao Phat – Thai Fried Rice Recipe

Khao Phat Gai – Fried Rice with Chicken A basic fried rice commonly made by street vendors and fine restaurants alike. It’s best to use day-old rice that’s been cooked and sitting at room temperature.

View Khao Phat Gai – Fried Rice with Chicken Recipe

Khao Khluk Kapi Khao khluk kapi is rice stir-fried with shrimp paste, served with sweetened pork, beef or vegetables, sour mango, fried shrimp, chillies and shallots.

View Khao Phat Kung – Fried Rice with Shrimp Recipe

Khao Op Sapparot – Pineapple Fried Rice Chinese invented fried rice but we think it’s the genius of the Thais that make fried rice sinfully delicious — they concocted pineapple fried rice.

View Khao Op Sapparot – Pineapple Fried Rice Recipe

American fried rice (Khao pad Amerigan) This style of fried rice is actually a Thai invention using hot dogs, fried chicken, eggs as side dishes or mixed into rice fried with ketchup. Apparently, this was served to GIs during the Vietnam war, but now has become very popular and commonplace all throughout Thailand. The Malaysian counterpart, substituting pork with chicken, is called nasi goreng USA.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Nasi goreng An Indonesian and Malay version of fried rice, the main difference compared to fried rice is it is cooked with sweet soy sauce (kecap manis). It is often accompanied by additional items such as a fried egg, fried chicken, satay, and condiments such as sambal, acar, and krupuk. It is served in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and most of the neighbouring countries, and is popular in the Netherlands.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Kimchi bokkeumbap or kimchi fried rice A popular variety of fried rice, it is prepared with Korean pickled cabbage (kimchi) and a variable list of other ingredients. A wide range of fried rice dishes are frequently prepared in Korean cuisine, often with whichever ingredients are handy.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Sinangag In Sinangag, a Filipino version of garlic fried rice, rice is added to stir-fried garlic and then seasoned with salt and pepper. It is a common, everyday breakfast dish.

View Sinangag – Filipino Garlic Fried Rice Recipe

Curry fried rice standard fried rice mixed with curry powder for a spicier flavour.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Sambal fried rice Found in Singapore, this is a variation of fried rice made with sambal, a condiment based on chillies and belachan, derived from Indonesian and Malay influences.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Hawaiian fried rice A common style of fried rice in Hawaii, it usually contains egg, spring onions, peas, cubed carrots, and either Portuguese sausage or Spam or both, sometimes available with kimchi added. Normally, it is cooked in sesame oil.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Arroz Frito (Cuban fried rice) Very similar to “special fried rice”, this version can be found alongside typical criollo dishes in many Cuban restaurants. This dish features ham, grilled pork, shrimp, chicken, and eggs, along with a variety of vegetables. Some restaurants add lechón (Cuban-style suckling pig), lobster tails, and/or crab. Chinese Cubans are responsible for the dish’s introduction.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Omelette rice Also known as omurice in Japanese or nasi pattaya in Malay, it is fried rice wrapped inside the egg omelet. The fried rice is generally mixed with a variety of vegetables and meat.Tomato sauce is added.

View xxxxxxxxx Recipe

Asia

  • Omelette rice – also known as omurice in Japanese, Nasi goreng pattaya in Malay, or nasi goreng amplop in Indonesia. It is fried rice wrapped inside an egg omelette. The fried rice is generally mixed with a variety of vegetables and meat. Tomato sauce is added.
China
  • Canton (or Wui Fan 燴飯) – A Cantonese dish of fried rice, typically served with a thick gravy poured on it.
  • Hokkien (or Fujian) fried rice – This variation of Chinese fried rice is from the Fujian region of China; it has a thick sauce poured and mixed over it. The sauce can include mushrooms, meat, vegetables, etc.
  • Yin Yang Fried Rice– Topped with two different types of sauce, it typically has a savoury white sauce on one half, and a red tomato-based sauce on the other half. Elaborated versions use the sauce to make a yin-yang symbol.
  • Yeung chow (or Yangzhou) fried rice – This dish consists of generous portions of shrimp and scrambled egg, along with barbecued pork. This is the most popular fried rice served in Chinese restaurants, commonly referred to simply as “special fried rice” or “house fried rice”.
Japan
  • Chahan (チャーハン) or Yakimeshi (焼飯) This Chinese-derived fried rice is suited to Japanese tastes, sometimes adding katsuobushi for flavour, prepared with myriad ingredients.
Korea
  • Kimchi bokkeumbap or kimchi fried rice (김치볶음밥) – a popular variety of fried rice, it is prepared with Korean pickled cabbage (kimchi) and a variable list of other ingredients. A wide range of fried rice dishes are common in Korean cuisine, often with whichever ingredients are handy.
Indonesia
  • Nasi goreng – An Indonesian and Malay version of fried rice, the main difference compared to fried rice is it is cooked with sweet soy sauce (kecap manis). It is often accompanied by additional items such as a fried egg, fried chicken, satay, and condiments such as sambal, acar, and krupuk. It is served in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and most of the neighboring countries, and is popular in the Netherlands.
Singapore
  • Sambal fried rice – Found in Singapore, this is a variation of fried rice made with sambal, a condiment based on chilis and belachan, derived from Indonesian and Malay influences.
Thailand
  • Thai fried rice (ข้าวผัด, khao pad or khao phad) – the flavour of this version is radically different from that of common fried rice, mostly due to the use of jasmine rice, and it has various additions not found in Chinese versions. It is usually served with sliced cucumber and prik nam pla, a spicy sauce made of Thai chili, fish sauce and chopped garlic. Thai fried rice is a variety of fried rice typical of central Thai cuisine. It normally contains meat (chicken, shrimp, and crab are all common), egg, onions, garlic and sometimes tomatoes. This dish has many regional variants, as it is a widespread dish. Others variations of Thai fried rice include Coconut Fried Rice, Pineapple Fried Rice, and Basil Fried Rice.
  • American fried rice (ข้าวผัดอเมริกัน, Khao pad Amerigan) – this style of fried rice is actually a Thai invention using hot dogs, fried chicken, eggs as side dishes or mixed into rice fried with ketchup. This was served to U.S. soldiers during the Vietnam war, but now has become very popular and commonplace all throughout Thailand. The Malaysian counterpart, substituting pork with chicken, is called nasi goreng USA.
Cambodia
  • Bai cha – A Khmer variation of fried rice, it includes diced Sausage, garlic, soy sauce, and herbs usually eaten with meat.
Myanmar
  • Burmese fried rice ထမင်း‌ကြော်, htamin gyaw) normally uses Burmese fragrant rice which is short grain (rounder and shorter). A popular variety is a very plain version consisting of rice, boiled peas, onions, garlic and dark soy sauce. An accompanying condiment would be ngapi kyaw (fried fish paste with shredded flakes) and fresh cucumber strips mixed with chopped onions, green chili and vinegar.
Philippines
  • Bagoong rice – a type of Filipino fried rice, which uses shrimp paste as its main flavour. Meat, spring onions (scallions), as well as green mangoes are optionally added to it. It is best when eaten together with Binagoongan dishes.
  • Sinangág – Filipino garlic fried rice, which is cooked by adding stir-fried garlic to rice and then seasoning the mixture with salt and pepper. Vegetables, meats, and other ingredients may be added but it is generally left bare, because other ingredients may interfere with the flavour of the meat dish eaten with the fried rice. Sinangág is a constant component of the breakfast staple tapsilog and its derivatives.
India
  • Rice and curry – a popular dish in the Southern Indian states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu. Rice and curry is prepared using fried rice and other ingredients. Steamed rice is sometimes used.
  • Curry fried rice – standard fried rice mixed with curry powder for a spicier flavour.
Sri Lanka
  • Sri Lankan fried rice (ෆ්රයිඩ් රයිස්) is a Sri Lankan variation of the original Chinese version however basmati rice is used and Sri Lankan spices are also added to it.
Nepal
  • Bhuteko bhat (भुटेको भात) – A Nepalese version of fried rice, it is generally eaten with Achar however curry and dhal are also served alongside it.

Pacific

Hawaii
  • Hawaiian fried rice – A common style of fried rice in Hawaii, it usually contains egg, green onions, peas, cubed carrots, and either Portuguese sausage or Spam or both, sometimes available with kimchi added. Normally, it is cooked in sesame oil.

Americas

  • Arroz frito is a denomination used in the Spanish speaking world, meaning “fried rice”, with popular local denominations to represent the Chinese inspired varieties, e.g. arroz chino, arroz cantonés, arroz chaufa/chaulafán/chaufán/chofán, arroz frito tres delicias.
Ecuador
  • Chaulafan is the name for Chinese fried rice in Ecuador. In Ecuador and Peru, dark soy sauce is preferred for use with fried rice. Meats typically used are pork, beef, chicken or fish/seafood (e.g. shrimp).
Cuba
  • Arroz frito (Cuban fried rice) – very similar to “special fried rice”, this version can be found alongside typical criollo dishes in many Cuban restaurants. This dish features ham, grilled pork, shrimp, chicken, and eggs, along with a variety of vegetables. Some restaurants add lechón (Cuban-style suckling pig), lobster tails, and/or crab. Chinese Cubans are responsible for the dish’s introduction.
Peru
  • Arroz chaufa – a popular name for Chinese fried rice in Peru, belonging to the chifa kitchen. In Chile it is called arroz chaufán. The most common varieties are made using the same ingredients used in China. Some exotic versions are made with dried meat, beef tongue, alligator, lizard in place of traditional meats. In some regions the rice is replaced with quinoa or pearled wheat while in other rice is mixed with noodles. Aeropuerto is big Peruvian arroz chaufa dish with fried noodles and many other additions.
Puerto Rico
  • Arroz mampostea[d]o or arroz frito Yakimeshi is fried rice in Puerto Rico. It was brought over by Chinese and Japanese immigrants to the island and is usually made with left-over rice and typically Asian ingredients such as soy sauce, combined with popular Puerto Rican ingredients such as beans.

Europe

Portugal
  • Arroz chau-chau – is fried rice in Portuguese, and is in Portugal often served together with other food as an accompaniment.

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