Every so often I crave a simple and filling BUT healthy meal option. I found that combination in brown “fried” rice and it is a recipe that is definitely made in my house every few weeks. The main difference between regular fried rice and this healthier version, of course, is that the version I make is made with brown rice not white rice. I have tried a few different variations of recipes for brown fried rice (one version is here, the other I have on a recipe card – old school!) but really, there isn’t much a recipe you need to follow at all except for the sauce. And ironically, the sauce I when I make it comes from this quinoa fried rice recipe. (Note: a few weeks ago I made the cauliflower version of fried rice and liked it enough that I just made it again last week – recipe here – but again, used sauce from the quinoa version. It does take more prep time, FYI. And nothing wrong with the quinoa version, just found you have to eat a lot for it to truly be filling enough).
Here is what I do:
- When making fried rice, the easiest step is to make the brown rice ahead of time if you can (following directions on the package) and just store it in the fridge until you’re ready to make the recipe.
- Then, I usually make sure I have enough of a mix of vegetables on hand in the fridge and/or the freezer, that goes well with the recipe. I always use onion and/or garlic, and a little bit (1 cube) of ginger, and frozen edamame (usually by the time I get to adding the edamame, it’s been sitting out for a bit and has thawed a little and since it cooks really fast, I throw it on towards the end). The other “hard” vegetables I use varies but is usually some combo of red pepper, carrot, or even broccoli florets.
- Then I just generally follow the recipe from the quinoa fried rice version. And I use a 12″ pan so there is plenty of room for it all.
- The most recent time I made this recipe I had leftover chicken that I threw in at the end, which adds some protein to the meal.
- Feel free to drizzle sriracha sauce on top at the end if you like – I do! Or add extra soy sauce, like my husband does. 🙂
- You could make an additional side to go with this meal which sometimes I do, like roasted broccoli, if I’m not mixing in the broccoli with the rice.
Note: I should mention that one of my daughter’s (g-d forbid both of them!) actually enjoys this meal – minus most of the vegetables but she’s fine with the chicken – basically she likes rice, chicken, and the sauce mixed together. In any case, it’s a big win in my book just because it breaks the monotony of the small line-up of other foods she eats for dinner.
Tip: You could definitely use more ginger then the 1 cube I use (if you’re using fresh ginger, it’s like 1 tsp). My husband isn’t a big fan of it so that is why I use only a small amount. Also, I warm up the frozen cube in the microwave for 5-8 seconds, just enough to soften it slightly before putting it in the pan.