Weeknight Dinner: Chicken Fried Rice

There are some meals that you just go back to over and over again; this is one of mine. I started making this in college because my best friend, Robin,  LOVED fried rice and we were looking for a way to make a healthy version at home. I started with this recipe from Tyler Florence but, as usual, I didn’t have all the ingredients, so I improvised. Since then, I have tweaked it and made it my own. Though I often throw in extra vegetables I have laying around or make substitutions, this is my favorite combination. The keys to this recipe are the fresh ginger and Hosin sauce, other than that, play around. We often cook extra chicken or beef on the grill to have on hand for lunch or so we have it available for recipes like this. You could also use shrimp or rotisserie chicken to make it easy. I like short grain brown rice for this, though it is traditionally made with white rice, there is enough flavor that people don’t notice the substitution. Plus, I think the brown rice gives it a nice bite. This is such a versatile recipe and super easy to make!


Chicken Fried Rice


2 cups short-grain brown rice

4 cups cold water

1 (1-inch) piece ginger, peeled and sliced in 1/2

1 tablespoon kosher salt

1 tablespoon sesame or olive oil

1 teaspoon Mongolian Fire Oil (optional)

4 scallions, sliced thin (reserve some of the green part for garnish)

1 (1-inch) piece ginger, peeled and finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 carrot, chopped

1 cup sugar snap peas, chopped

1 cup pineapple, cubed

½ red bell pepper, chopped

1 egg, lightly beaten

¼ cup orange juice

3-5 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce

1 ½ tablespoons hoisin sauce

2 chicken breasts, cooked and chopped

In a pot with a tight fitting lid, add the rice and 4 cups cold water. Put in the ginger and salt. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside for about 10 minutes. (I usually use a rice cooker so I don’t have to watch it, but you can prepare on the stovetop).

While the rice is cooking, prep the vegetables and chicken. Try to make all the pieces roughly the same size so they cook evenly.

Heat a wok or large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. When it is hot, pour in the sesame oil. Add the scallions, ginger, and garlic; stir-fry for 1 minute until fragrant.

Stir in the vegetables and orange juice leaving out the pineapple and cook for about 2 minutes.

Stir in the chicken to reheat, about 1-2 minutes.

Remove the ginger from the rice and add the rice and pineapple to the wok; stir everything together and break up any clumps of rice.

Add the soy and hoisin and stir some more.

Pour in the egg and stir-fry until cooked, about 1-2 minutes. Taste for seasoning and add more soy sauce if needed.

Stir in the additional green onion and serve.



  1. I forgot to comment here about the fact that this recipe was one of THE reasons I was considered serious girlfriend material for Tony years back. He saw me add egg and knew I wasn’t messing around with cooking him that first dinner! So funny to think about but he still mentions it when we make this now!

    • That is so great! I love that we both still make it! The original recipe still has your writing on it of all the adjustments we made and how good we thought it was.

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