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A Healthy Fried Rice Recipe That Doesn’t Make You Feel Like You Just Ate Fried Food
Fried rice is a process.
Not the “ugh, this is such a process” kind of process like when you’re at a busy DMV.
I mean a step-by-step process that can easily be followed every time you make healthy fried rice. Regardless of what ingredients you add. Kale fried rice (like this recipe), chicken fried rice, tofu fried rice, broccoli fried rice, [insert ingredient name] fried rice all follow the same steps. More on the process below.
After you run through this healthy fried rice recipe, you’ll gain freedom from Chinese takeout. Don’t get me wrong, we all have cravings for a tasty plate of crispy rice every once in a while.
But, your freedom from takeout isn’t because a restrictive diet doesn’t allow you to indulge in a crispy and salty craving. It’s because you can make food yourself that satisfies your craving. The only difference is that it’s much more healthy and flavored with confidence – something that no takeout food will have.
The best part? This healthy egg fried rice is super simple and quick to make. Exactly what you need after a long day.
Is Fried Rice Bad For You?
I know what you’re thinking: aren’t I on a healthy eating website and isn’t fried rice bad for you?
Well, you’re both right and wrong.
When you order takeout fried rice, it’s probably not great for you. There are two reasons for this.
- Portion size, specifically the amount of rice, is generally multiple servings worth of food.
- Large amounts of unhealthy processed oils are used to “fry” the rice.
This kale fried rice recipe takes care of that because there is a better balance between rice, veggies, and eggs so it’s not as carbohydrate heavy. Healthy olive oil used for “frying” the rice and another healthy oil, sesame oil, is used for finishing.
To recap: takeout fried is unhealthy because of large portion sizes that are heavy on rice and the use of unhealthy oils. This fried rice uses more veggies and substitutes healthy oils like olive and sesame.
The Process: Fried Rice
The key to make fried rice stress-free is preparing all of your ingredients before starting the cooking process. Once ingredients start hitting the pan, the dish moves quick. So, you don’t want to be distracted by having to cut up veggies or mix sauces.
- Make Rice – If you can, make the rice a day or two in advance. Leftover rice will have less moisture and crisp better. If not, then prepare your ingredients while the rice cooks.
- Prepare all of your ingredients
- Cut up veggies and meat (if using)
- Mix sauces – You should have two: one that is added during cooking and one for finishing
- Scramble eggs
- Heat oil in a pan and cook veggies and meat (if using)
- Remove veggies once finished. Add more oil to pan and cook eggs.
- Once eggs are finished, add rice and add cooking sauce. Mix together and cook undisturbed for rice to crisp.
- Remove from heat, add veggies, meat (if using), and finishing sauce. Mix together and serve.
How to Make Healthy Kale and Egg Fried Rice
Gather your ingredients.
Prepare your ingredients.
- Combine garlic and soy sauce/tamari in a small bowl.
- Combine sesame oil and vinegar in another bowl.
- Separate kale stems and leaves. Chop leaves and thinly slice stems.
- Cut scallions into 1/2 inch slices
- Whisk eggs until no bright yellow streaks remain. Mix in 1/2 tsp kosher salt.
Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large pan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add kale stems. Cook until browned and starting to crisp, about 4 minutes.
Add kale leaves and scallions. Cook until leaves are wilted, 3-4 minutes. Remove veggies from pan and set aside.
Add 3 tbsp olive oil then eggs. Stir eggs constantly to avoid burning until cooked, 30-60 seconds. Add rice and soy sauce mixture to the pan. Mix with the egg and let cook, undisturbed for 3 minutes.
Remove from heat. Add sesame oil mixture and cooked veggies. Mix and serve.
How Long Does this Fried Rice Keep?
This fried rice will keep 3-4 days covered in the refrigerator. These leakproof containers are great for storing completed dishes like this one.
Healthy Kale and Egg Fried Rice
- 4 eggs
- 1 bunch kale, leaves and stems separated. Leaves roughly chopped and stems thinly sliced.
- 1/2 bunch scallions, cut into 1/2 inch slices
- 2 cloves garlic, grated
- 1 tbsp tamari or soy sauce
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup brown rice (about 3 cups cooked)
- 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
- 3 tbsp sesame oil
- 1 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1 inch piece of ginger, grated (optional)
- Fill a medium pot with 6 cups water. Add a few pinches of salt and bring to a boil. Add rice and simmer for 30 minutes. Drain water and place lid on pot. Let sit, off heat, covered for 10 minutes. Rice can be made up to 3 days in advance.
- Prepare all of your ingredients before starting the cooking process. Mix garlic, ginger (if using), and soy/tamari in a small bowl. Mix vinegar and sesame oil in another small bowl. Cut kale and scallions. Whisk eggs and 1/2 tsp kosher salt in a bowl until no yellow streaks remain.
- Heat 1 tbsp olive oil over medium in a large pan or Dutch oven. Add kale stems. Cook until browned and crispy, about 4 minutes.
- Add kale leaves and scallions. Season with salt. Cook until kale is wilted, 4-5 minutes. Remove veggies from the pan and set aside.
- In the same pan, heat remaining 3 tbsp olive oil over medium-low heat. Add eggs and stir constantly until set, 30-60 seconds.
- Add rice and soy sauce mixture. Mix rice and eggs and cook undisturbed for 3 minutes.
- Remove pan from heat. Mix in vegetables and vinegar mixture. Serve.
Gain Freedom From Takeout
Now that you’ll be slinging fried rice that tastes just as good as your local Chinese food takeout joint, maybe you can invest in those takeout boxes. This will really set the mood.
I was kind of joking. But now that I’m thinking about it, it would be funny to serve this fried rice in those containers (I found them here) to someone who thinks healthy food doesn’t take good.
Ask them what they think of the “new” Chinese restaurant you wanted to try out. See if they can tell the difference. I bet they can’t.
More Articles From Our Kale Series
Everything you need to know about eating, buying, storing, cooking, and using kale. Plus, why you should.
- Kale 101: Everything You Need to Know to Buy, Store, Cook, and Eat Kale
- 12 Health Benefits of Kale: Why You Should Eat More Kale
- Everyday Simple Kale Salad
- Quick Sauteed Kale With Garlic and Sesame
- Anchovy and Garlic Braised Kale
- Roasted Kale Chips In the Oven
- Simple Chickpea and Kale Salad With Avocado
- Red Pepper, Potato, and Ricotta Frittata