A quick recipe for takeaway-style chicken fried rice with loads of flavour. I’ve included lots of swaps so you can use up whatever you’ve got in your pantry.
Chicken Fried Rice on a white plate with chopsticks

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This chicken fried rice is such a great recipe for using up leftover scraps of chicken from your roast chicken dinner.

We hate seeing food go to waste, and will always try to find ways to turn leftovers into further meals or freeze for another day.

One thing that’s become a ritual after I make a roast dinner, is Chris slicing up any leftover meat into one parcel for sandwiches/salads, then wrapping up shreds of meat for fried rice or soup, and then boiling up the carcass for stock.

So I’m using leftover roast chicken for this recipe. You can use rotisserie chicken, cooked chicken breast or other cooked and sliced/shredded meat if you prefer.

What do we need?
Ingredients for Chicken Fried Rice on a wooden table

How to make chicken fried rice

Full recipe with detailed steps in the recipe card at the end of this post.

  1. Soften a chopped onion in the wok in a little oil. Then add chopped red pepper, garlic and peas and cook for a couple of minutes.
  2. Add cooked shredded chicken, a splash of sesame oil and cold boiled rice. Turn up the heat to high and keep tossing everything together in the wok until the rice is hot.
  3. Once the rice is hot, push the rice over to the side of the pan and crack the two eggs in the space, then add a little splash of soy sauce. Stir the eggs, heating through until lightly scrambled, then stir the eggs into the rice.
  4. Add in more soy sauce, plus salt and a squirt of lemon juice and give everything a good stir

8 image collage showing how to make Chicken Fried Rice

Serve topped with spring onions (scallions).
I quite like a drizzle of sriracha on mine too.

Chicken Fried Rice on a plate with chilli sauce on top

You can serve the rice as a meal in its own right, or you can have serve it with a few sides, or even serve the rice as a side dish.

Why not serve as part of a Chinese banquet with some of these recipes

Homemade Crispy Duck with Spicy Plum Sauce (full masterclass recipe)

Sticky Sesame chicken

Crispy Sesame Prawn Toast

Spicy Ginger Beef

Sticky Chinese Pork Belly – melt-in-the-mouth tender

Baked Cauliflower Wings in a delicious Asian sauce

Oven-Baked Ribs with Crispy Onions

 


The boiled rice – getting it right every time

To make the best fried rice, it’s really important to get the boiled rice bit right first.
It needs to be boiled (I’ve got a simple tutorial here for how to boil rice in a pan perfectly), then cooled, so the rice dries out a little.
This will help stop the rice from sticking together and will also help it to absorb more flavour.

Close up image of Chicken Fried Rice

Swaps for fried rice

  • Swap out the chicken for cooked shredded/sliced pork or beef.
  • You could also add ham, crispy bacon and/or cooked chorizo pieces.
  • If you want more veggies, add in cooked carrots, sweetcorn, broccoli, mushrooms, sugarsnap peas, canned beansprouts or canned bamboo shoots.

More rice recipes

Special fried rice

Indonesian fried rice

Cauliflower egg fried rice from my chicken stir fry

Homemade pilau rice from my chicken jalfrezi recipe

Watch how to make it

 

YouTube video

 

 

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5 from 9 votes

Chicken Fried Rice

A quick recipe for takeaway-style chicken fried rice with loads of flavour! Great for using up leftover cooked chicken!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 4
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Asian

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 onion peeled and diced
  • 1 red bell pepper deseeded and finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and minced
  • 115 g (2/3 cup) frozen peas
  • 250 g (2 cups) cooked shredded/sliced chicken
  • ½ tbsp sesame oil
  • 800 g (4 cups) boiled and cooled long-grain rice this is about 1 1/3 cups (300g) of dried rice that has been boiled in water
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • juice of 1/2 a lemon

To Serve:

  • ½ bunch of spring onions/scallions chopped
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Instructions 

  • Add 1 tbsp of the oil in a large wok. Add the onion and cook, stirring regularly on a medium heat for 5 minutes until the onion starts to turn soft and translucent.
    2 tbsp vegetable oil, 1 onion
  • Add in the remaining vegetable oil, chopped red bell pepper, garlic, and peas. Cook for a further 2 minutes, stirring regularly.
    1 red bell pepper, 2 cloves garlic, 115 g (2/3 cup) frozen peas
  • Now add chicken and sesame oil. Stir together, then add in the rice and turn up the heat to high.
    250 g (2 cups) cooked shredded/sliced chicken, 1/2 tbsp sesame oil, 800 g (4 cups) boiled and cooled long-grain rice
  • Use a spatula to toss everything together and to ensure the rice doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan. Keep moving the rice around so that it's all getting reheated.
  • Once the rice is hot (this will take about 5 minutes), push the rice over to the side of the pan and crack the two eggs in the space. Add a little splash of the soy sauce to the eggs.
    2 eggs, 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • Making sure the part of the wok with the eggs in is over the heat, fry the eggs, giving a mix with the spatula until the egg starts to cook and looks scrambled, but is still a little runny.
  • Now mix the egg into the rice.
  • Pour in the remaining soy sauce, sprinkle on the salt and mix it all together.
    1/4 tsp salt
  • Add the lemon juice, stir and taste. Add a little more lemon juice if required.
    juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • Divide between 4 bowls. Top with spring onions (scallions).
    1/2 bunch of spring onions/scallions

Video

YouTube video

Notes

1. Can I make it ahead?

Yes! I think reheated fried rice actually tastes better! 
Cook the rice, then spread it out in a large dish (so it will cool quickly) cover and refrigerate for up to a day. Don't leave cooked rice out at room temperature. Bacteria can grow on cooked rice very quickly, so it's important to:
  • Refrigerate it as quickly as possible
  • Don't store for more than 24 hours in the fridge, and
  • Thoroughly reheat it.
Reheat in a wok, over a medium-high heat, moving it around the pan with a spatula, until piping hot throughout. You may need to add an extra splash of oil, as the rice will have absorbed the oil whilst in the fridge.
I would also add an extra squeeze of lemon juice and some fresh chopped spring onions (scallions) on top before serving.

2. Can I freeze it?

Yes, you can freeze this chicken fried rice. 
Cook the rice, then spread it out in a large dish (so it will cool quickly) cover and freeze.
As per the instructions above - Don't leave cooked rice out at room temperature. Bacteria can grow on cooked rice very quickly, so it's important to:
  • Freeze it as quickly as possible
  • Defrost in the refrigerator overnight (and don't store for more than 24 hours)
  • Thoroughly reheat it.
Reheat in a wok, over a medium-high heat, moving it around the pan with a spatula, until piping hot throughout. You will need to add an extra splash of oil, as the rice will have absorbed the oil upon storing.
Add an extra squeeze of lemon juice and some fresh chopped spring onions (scallions) on top before serving.

3. Nutritional information is per serving

- this recipe serves 4

Nutrition

Calories: 477kcal | Carbohydrates: 54g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 134mg | Sodium: 737mg | Potassium: 427mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 1279IU | Vitamin C: 50mg | Calcium: 52mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Some of the links in this post are affiliate links – which means if you buy the product I get a small commission (at no extra cost to you). If you do buy, then thank you! That’s what helps us to keep Kitchen Sanctuary running. The nutritional information provided is approximate and can vary depending on several factors. For more information please see our Terms & Conditions.

 

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Hi, I'm Nicky and I love to cook! I want to share with you my favourite, delicious family friendly recipes. I want to inspire you to create fantastic food for your family every day.

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Comments

  1. Kris says:

    5 stars
    We all really thought it was so very good!

  2. Jeff says:

    You never gave the ingredients!

    1. Nicky Corbishley says:

      There’s a recipe card with full ingredients and instructions at the bottom of the blog post (you can jump to it, using the ‘jump to recipe’ button at the top of the page.

  3. Lizzy says:

    5 stars
    Fab!!! A big hit in our house and so quick to make. x