Leftovers Fried Rice
Leftovers Fried Rice is just that—a great way to use leftover rice, protein like chicken, beef, or pork, and any leftover vegetables you have. This is especially handy during the Christmas. Thanksgiving and Holiday season when there are a lot of leftover ingredients.
This super easy rice recipe takes just 5 minutes to turn a few simple ingredients into an amazing side dish or easy dinner main dish. It could not be easier to make because in this particular case, the ingredients are already cooked (aside from the onion and beaten egg, but they take just a couple of minutes to cook).
This is one of those dishes that you can add whatever you have in your fridge to use up. Leftover roast chicken, turkey, beef, pork or even ham. The veggies you can add are endless and leftover Christmas leftover veggies are perfect in this.
For the flavor addition, I like to use a mix of soy sauce, toasted sesame oil and vegetable or chicken stock/broth. The reason I add the stock is to dilute the soy sauce to eliminate some of the salt, yet still retain the flavor. Plus, the sesame oil adds an extra layer of flavor.
The best fried rice starts with the best leftover rice
I’ve learned a couple of good tips to achieve the best fried rice. Use day-old rice, allow to dry-out before cooking and cold, not room temperature rice is better as the cold rice is dryer and will fry better rather than steam if moisture is present.
To dry out the rice, spread in an even layer on a sheet pan/tray. Place in the fridge, uncovered overnight.
Another preparation that will achieve perfect fried rice is to separate the rice grains before cooking. You can do this by adding a little oil to your hands and separating the rice grains.
These preparation steps are not mandatory, but they do help to achieve the best results.
The amount of protein and vegetables to add is up to how many leftovers you have and how loaded you like your fried rice. If you have multiple leftover proteins, mix-it-up and add them all.
Type of rice to use for fried rice
White rice like short grain, long grain, basmati, Jasmine rice or brown rice all will work. Short grain rice has more starch so it may clump and stick together more than the others. If you have leftover takeout rice (takeaway rice), this is perfect too!
Best pan for cooking fried rice
A large wok is what works best for heat distribution and the shape helps for ease of tossing and mixing . If you don’t have a wok, use an enameled cast iron pan. The non-stick surface will prevent the scrambled egg from sticking. Make sure to scrape any browned bits of rice off the bottom of the pan.
Optional additions to fried rice
Red or green bell peppers, spicy peppers, green onions/scallions, sesame seeds, bok choy,
Make it low carb fried rice
Substitute the rice for cauliflower rice. Cauliflower has a lot of moisture so the drying out step will really be a benefit to the recipe.