Easy Chicken Fried Rice

There are some dishes that have been around forever.  So long that many of us don’t even think about them as a delicious weeknight option — even when we have all the ingredients on hand. Even though it’s something we love, and is super simple to make. I think we should give those classic standbys some love and this Easy Chicken Fried Rice is one that deserves some attention.

chopped vegetables and peas

Fried rice is a favorite here because it uses common, everyday ingredients and comes together lickety-split.  I generally start mine with ingredients like bell peppers, onions and carrots, then I scavenge for whatever other veg I have on hand.  In this case, I was using up some frozen peas, but you could use mushrooms or broccoli — and certainly water chestnuts if you’ve got a can hanging out in the pantry.

garlic, ginger, cilantro

The key to flavorful fried rice is the aromatics and sauce.  Ginger and garlic are a must, as is soy sauce and sesame oil.  Garlic-chili paste adds flavor and heat!

sautéed vegetables in a pan

Start by stir-frying the onions, bell pepper and carrots.

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stages of making fried rice

Then add the rice and cook for several minutes before adding the chicken (or pork, shrimp, beef etc.) and the sauce mixture.  Finally add the egg and the last of the vegetables, green onion and cilantro.

Easy Chicken Fried Rice in a pan with spoon

This whole dish takes about 15 minutes to put together and it’s a great way to use up leftovers.  So next time you make rice — make a little extra with this quick and easy dinner in mind for later in the week.

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easy chicken fried rice with a pair of chopsticks.
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5 from 4 votes

Easy Chicken Fried Rice

Put your leftover rice to good use with this easy, delicious fried rice…  
Author: Lisa Lotts
Course Main Course
Cuisine Asian Inspired
Keyword fried rice
Dietary Restrictions Gluten-Free
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 2


  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • ½ cup onion chopped
  • ½ cup bell pepper chopped
  • 1 large carrot finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 2 cups leftover white rice chilled overnight – do not use freshly cooked rice — it will be too sticky
  • 1 ½ cups chicken diced (can substitute pork, beef or shrimp)
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon chili garlic sauce
  • 1 large egg lightly beaten
  • ½ cup frozen peas
  • 3 scallions thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup cilantro chopped


  • Chop the vegetables and chicken before you begin cooking and have them ready to go
  • In a small bowl combine the soy sauce, sesame oil and chili garlic sauce, stir to combine and set aside.
  • In a large skillet, heat the canola oil over medium high heat.  When the oil starts to slick across the pan, add the onion, pepper and carrot, stir,  cooking until the vegetables become tender 3-5 minutes.
  • Add the garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.  Add the rice, stirring occasionally to break up clumps and heat through 1-2 minutes.  
  • Add the chicken (or other protein) and soy sauce mixture, stirring until well combined.  Add the egg and toss well to combine with the rice mixture.  Add the peas, scallions and cilantro, cooking just until the peas are thawed.  Serve.


Calories: 457kcal | Carbohydrates: 59g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 123mg | Sodium: 501mg | Potassium: 501mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 7965IU | Vitamin C: 72.7mg | Calcium: 76mg | Iron: 4.9mg

Don’t Forget To “Pin It” For Later!

This easy fried rice recipe uses up your leftovers in a quick, tasty 20-minute one-pan dinner! Easy Chicken Fried Rice is a weeknight favorite!

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  1. 5 stars
    I have all these ingredients during my covid-19 lockdown. I’m gonna make this tonight! Thank you!!!!

  2. Rachel Roszmann says:

    Are you supposed to cook the egg before you add it to the rice?

    1. No, whisk the egg and add it to the rice — it will cook with the rest of the ingredients.

  3. Awesome recipe! Love how you molded the rice. Pinned to my Nice Rice Board! Also just pinned your fish tacos to my seafood delights board!

    1. Thanks, Mona! I’m glad you like the rice – I just put it into a bowl and pressed down, then inverted it on a plate.

  4. Yum! You are right. This has been a childhood favorite and I don’t make it nearly enough anymore. Love the styling of your first photo.

  5. 5 stars
    I ove fried rice and am especially fond of green peas in mine :). We honestly don’t make it that often but now your post has me wondering – why? And now I have all the cravings for it!

  6. Michele Hall says:

    5 stars
    I love fried rice… and so much better when its with veggies that I already have! We make it when we are just too tired to cook a lot, and have no desire to go out to eat! Im going to try your recipe because its flavored a little bit different that ours… I mean IM LOVING the addition of the chili garlic! Brilliant!

    1. Fried rice is one of those often forgotten standards, don’t you think, Michele! Hope you like it!

  7. I love fried rice, and chicken fried rice is a favourite. The colours of your ingredients make it look super delicious and I love that you serve it in the domed bowl-shape, makes it look even better.

    1. That’s my super-fancy food styling – LOL!

    1. And usually, you’ve got everything you need on hand!