The best-fried rice should leave you full, satisfied, and with that contented feeling after a great takeout. So long as you have some leftover chicken and rice from a different meal, you can make this incredibly simple meal whenever you like in barely any time at all!
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Chicken Fried Rice
Fried rice might just be the ultimate leftovers dish, capable of utilizing basically any leftover food from days before that you have. Protein, vegetables, and day-old rice all combine together into one delicious, filling, and incredibly cheap recipe with not much effort.
This recipe focuses on making a tasty chicken fried rice, so you can be sure that it will be filled with protein, while still managing to remain low fat, making it a wonderfully healthy weeknight meal.
How To Prepare Your Rice
By far the best rice to use for making any kind of fried rice dish is rice that is leftover from a different meal the night before.
This isn’t just a good way to use up leftovers, however. By keeping your leftover rice in the fridge overnight, the rice grains have a chance to dry out, which lets them more easily crisp up in the pan when you use them to make fried rice.
Make sure to not keep rice for too long, however, especially after actually turning your rice into fried rice. Rice that has been cooked twice gets an incredibly large quantity of surface area, which can actually be a serious problem when it comes to the development of bacteria, and it is super easy to get sick from eating twice-cooked 2-day-old rice.
When you go to actually prepare your fried rice, make sure to get the pan super hot, as well as the oil you are going to use, so as to ensure the rice crisps up properly. If you don’t make sure it is really hot, you might end up with sad, soggy fried rice, instead of the crispy goodness that we want.
What Type Of Cooked Chicken Should You Use?
This chicken fried rice dish was originally designed to be made the day after cooking a chicken as a way to use up any leftover meat that you have.
However, even with the most careful of meal planning things don’t always go to plan and you might find yourself without any cooked chicken on hand leaving you with a few choices.
The easiest is to just grab some cooked chicken from your local store. This could be chicken slices, cooked chicken breasts, or an entire rotisserie chicken, any will work for this recipe.
Alternatively, you could cook chicken, especially for this dish but that will add to the cooking time and somewhat defeats the simplicity of the dish. If you do choose to do this both chicken breasts and thighs work well it just depends on your taste.
If you find yourself making chicken fried rice regularly you might want to consider batch-cooking your favorite chicken pieces when you have free time. You can then portion them up and freeze them so that you always have them on hand when you want them.
Tips For Cooking The Eggs To The Perfect Texture
This recipe uses the tried and tested method of mixing in some whisked eggs to the rice just as the recipe is approaching done.
This not only helps boost the protein content of the whole meal, but that little bit of extra egg, fat, and liquid gives each bit of rice an absolute ton of juiciness and tenderness.
Without the egg, the rice might feel a bit too crunchy and savory, whereas the addition of just a little bit of whisked egg gives you tons of that juicy, creamy flavor that only the very best fried rice recipes have.
To make sure your eggs don’t get overcooked and have their texture ruined, make sure to keep stirring the eggs while they are cooking and then mix them thoroughly into the whole fried rice mixture.
The Best Vegetables To Use In Your Fried Rice
This chicken fried rice recipe is an excellent way to use up leftovers, so if you have any vegetables that are leftover from the previous day, you should use them as your vegetables of choice.
If you don’t have any vegetables going to waste in the back of your fridge, however, there are a few options that work best with your chicken fried rice.
- Frozen Vegetable Mixes
Frozen vegetables are always a good go-to for quick weeknight meals such as this one. You can buy frozen vegetables in advance and then just pull out what you need from the freezer and not have to worry about the rest going off as it will last for months.
To add as much color and flavor as possible to your chicken fried rice, opt for a frozen vegetable mix.
Typically mixes will include something along the lines of carrots, peas, and corn for maximum color, brightness, and flavor.
- Fresh Peas
Fresh peas are a popular addition to fried rice dishes as they add color, texture, and a subtle sweetness, as well as round out the nutrition in your fried rice.
- Fresh Or Canned Corn
Another great option is fresh or canned corn, especially if you want to add a fresh sweet taste to the dish without overly complicating the total flavor.
- Shredded Cabbage
Shredded cabbage is ideal if you want a vegetable that blends into the dish while still contributing a textural difference. Just make sure to give it a little bit of cooking time at the start to help release some of its water, get tender and release more nutrients!
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Chicken Fried Rice
- Prep Time
- 10 minutes
- Cook Time
- 20 minutes
- Main Course
- Karlynn Johnston
- 6 slices bacon (chopped)
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 2 Tablespoons sesame oil
- 2-3 Tablespoons soy sauce to your taste
- 2 -4 Tablespoons oyster sauce
- 5 cups cooked rice (chilled completely I prefer Jasmine rice)
- 1-2 cups cooked chicken (chopped)
- 1 cup cooked vegetables of your choice
- 2-4 eggs whisked
- 3 Tablespoons green onions to top
- In a large, over-sized skillet, fry the bacon on medium-high heat until it reaches desired doneness. We like ours tender-crisp in rice.
- Add in the garlic and fry for 1-2 minutes.
- Add in the sesame oil, soy sauce and oyster sauce. (you can mix in more at the end, so start at 2 tbsp of each. I prefer 2 tbsp soy and 4 tbsp Oyster sauce, but feel free to mix it up to your liking!). Stir until all the sauces and bacon mix are combined.
- Add in the rice and fry until it crisps up how you like it.
- Stir in the cooked chicken and vegetables of your choice.
- Push the rice to the side or make a well. Add in the eggs and stir fry in that well until scrambled. Once done, mix the egg into the rice mixture.
- Fry the rice some more, taste and see if you want to add more soy or oyster sauce. Mine always needs more oyster sauce, it gives it the most fabulous flavor ever!
- Serve up in bowls, let the family top with green onions and enjoy
All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.