Quick and Easy Chicken Fried Rice

Makes 4 to 6 servings

The key to good fried rice is using leftover rice, which is drier than freshly steamed. In the interest of keeping it simple, our favorite strategy is to keep a zip-top bag in the freezer where you can empty leftover rice from take-out or home-made dinners. Just pull it out of the freezer in the morning before you head out for work. If you don’t have leftover rice, this is a great time to use those bags of frozen rice you can buy at most grocery stores.


  • One (1-inch) piece ginger, peeled and grated
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-size pieces
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 large carrot, quartered lengthwise and diced (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced (about 1 cup)
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 3 cups cooked brown rice, preferably day-old
  • 1/2 cup shelled edamame (fresh or frozen)
  • 2 scallions, sliced into 1/2-inch pieces, plus more for garnish


  1. In a small bowl, combine the ginger, garlic, vinegar, soy sauce, sesame  oil, and sugar. Set aside.
  2. Heat the vegetable oil in a large well-seasoned cast-iron skillet or non-stick sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the chicken, season with salt and pepper, and cook, turning occasionally, until well-browned and cooked through, about 7 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  3. To the same pan, add the carrot and onion, and cook until soft and browned around the edges. The carrot should be just about cooked through, about 4 minutes. Transfer to the bowl with the chicken.
  4. Reduce the heat to medium-low and add the eggs and a pinch of salt. Cook without stirring until the eggs begin to set on the bottom, about 15 seconds. Stir and continue cooking until large curds form, about 30 more seconds.
  5. Add the rice and reserved soy sauce mixture and stir to coat. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook without stirring until the rice begins to brown at the bottom of the pan, about 1 minute. Stir and cook again, without stirring. Continue this until the rice is nicely browned, about 4 minutes total.
  6. Add the cooked chicken and vegetables, along with the edamame and scallions. Cook about 3 minutes more until the scallions are slightly wilted. Top with more sliced scallions to serve.


  1. pierce.marnie@gmail.com

    Delicious and easy recipe. It was good as leftovers the next day, too. Rather than cooking chicken thighs, I used left-over roasted chicken (light and dark meat) which made the prep much faster. I substituted frozen peas for edamame because that’s what was in the freezer. I also substituted Coco Aminos for soy sauce which I always do. The final change was the use of a rice blend, again, because that was what I had on hand. This recipe is adaptable and tastes great. It is a keeper!

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