Vegan fried rice is simple and perfect for weeknights when you're craving a flavorful, healthier option than take-out. With veggies and JUST Egg (optional), this fried rice is always a hit! Add your favorite vegan protein to turn it into a 1-pot full meal.
We make a large pot of rice almost every Sunday. That means that Monday night I am SO prepared to make veggie fried rice!
Obviously, fried rice is delicious and everyone loves it, but you know what else is great? It's such an easy way to use up any random vegetables you have in the fridge. Plus, if you don't have fresh veggies on hand, you can make amazing vegan fried rice with frozen vegetables!
This dish is a win-win no matter how you look at it. Well, the only exception to this is for the oil-free folks. Y'all know I love to share oil-free recipes, but we're going the classic Chinese fried rice route today and using oil.
Here are a few notes on the ingredients needed for fried rice, including the specific vegetables used in this batch. Keep in mind that you can switch up the veggies as desired.
- Cooked rice - my favorite rice for fried rice is white jasmine, but the day I shot these photos I didn't have any so used basmati instead. Brown rice can also be used if you prefer whole grains. See below for tips on preparing the rice.
- Oil - any neutral-tasting cooking oil is fine for fried rice. Many people prefer to use butter for its flavor, as prepared in Japanese teppanyaki restaurants. Feel free to use vegan butter instead of oil.
- JUST Egg - I love the color and flavor this vegan egg product adds to fried rice, but you can easily omit this ingredient without any issues. In the Substitutions section below see my tips for using tofu to replace the JUST Egg.
- Vegetables - the veggies often used in fried rice are onion, carrot, and green peas. I included cabbage (because I love it and had some in the fridge), a few mushrooms (same reason), green onion, and frozen edamame instead of peas.
It's easy to make fried rice as vegetable-heavy as you like. Aim for around 2 to 2 ½ cups of chopped vegetables.
Other vegetables that are great in fried rice:
- snow peas
Making fried rice is done in 4 basic steps. Cooking happens quickly so you'll want to have all of the ingredients prepped and ready to go.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a wok or skillet over medium-high heat, and add the rice. Stirring occasionally, cook until the rice is toasted and has a lightly chewy texture, about 4 minutes. Transfer rice to a plate.
- Add 2 more teaspoons of oil to the pan and bring up to temp. Add the vegetables and cook until lightly softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Create a hole in the center, and pour the soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, and red pepper flakes directly on the hot surface. Stir into the vegetables.
- If using ½ cup or less of JUST Egg, you should have enough room to scramble it by pushing the veggies to the side. If making an egg-heavy fried rice, transfer the veggies to a plate so that you'll have more room (JUST egg is very liquid and will spread). Add the vegan egg to the skillet/wok and cook for about 1 minute, tossing and scrambling.
- Mix the scrambled JUST Egg into the veggies. Add the green onion, return the rice to the pan, and stir. Taste and season with salt and pepper if desired.
Tips for Cooking Rice
- Rinse the rice first and drain well.
- Cook rice in a pressure cooker, Instant Pot, or rice cooker if you have one.
- The water-to-rice ratio will depend on the cooking method and type of rice used. I like to cook rice in the Instant Pot. For perfect rice every time, rinse it first, and use a 1:1 ratio of water to rice. Cook white rice for 4 minutes at high pressure with quick release; cook brown rice for 22 minutes at high pressure, also with quick release.
- Most fried rice recipes call for leftover chilled rice, but freshly cooked rice can also be used. Fluff it carefully, and allow to cool for about 15 minutes. Then spoon the rice onto a large baking sheet to cool, careful not to disturb or stir the rice too much.
- Use your hands to break up the cooled/cold rice into a large bowl before you preheat the wok or skillet.
- Gluten-free - use a certified gluten-free tamari to keep this dish GF. Though JUST Egg is not labeled as gluten-free, it does not include any gluten-containing ingredients.
- Soy-free - sub coconut aminos for the soy sauce, and choose green peas instead of edamame.
- Onion - instead of green onion, try fried rice with shallots, leeks, or any variety of regular onion that you have. Add these to the pan early, with the rest of the vegetables, instead of near the end of cooking.
- Edamame - use frozen green peas for a more classic fried rice.
- JUST Egg - crumbled firm tofu makes a great replacement for the vegan egg. Simply crumble about 8 ounces of extra firm tofu into a bowl (depending on how much tofu you want). Place a lint-free towel over the tofu and press down to remove some of the water. Season the tofu with 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast, a generous pinch of ground turmeric (for color), and salt and pepper. Add the crumbled tofu to the pan while cooking the vegetables.
Vegan fried is totally versatile! Try these flavorful variations:
- Cashew - in Step 1, before frying the rice, add ⅔ cup raw cashews to the preheated pan. Stirring frequently, toast for 2 to 3 minutes then transfer to a plate and proceed with the recipe.
- Kimchi - omit the salt and red pepper flakes, and add approximately ¾ cup spicy kimchi near the end of cooking.
- Pineapple - for a sweet and fruity twist, cook 1 cup chopped pineapple after removing the rice from the pan and before cooking the vegetables. When the pineapple is slightly caramelized on the edges, transfer it to a plate, then cook the vegetables.
- Protein Options - turn your vegan fried rice into a full meal. Here are a few ideas:
- Tofu - add cubed super- or extra-firm tofu when the veggies are added.
- Soy curls - first, rehydrate in broth; squeeze out the excess, then sauté after moving the rice to a plate and before adding the vegetables. Click here to learn more about soy curls.
- Vegan sausage - crumble or chop store-bought vegan sausage (like brats or a spicy variety), and add it to the pan before the vegetables. Go the homemade route with my spicy vegan andouille sausage or seitan pepperoni recipe.
- Pre-Cooked Seitan - this basic homemade seitan recipe is perfect for fried rice, or use store-bought seitan. Chop it into cubes, or pulse it in a food processor. Add the seitan to the pan when the veggies are almost done so that it can heat through.
Fried Rice FAQs
Yes! The key is to make sure the rice is not damp or too sticky, which has as much to do with the cooking method as whether it's day-old or not. To use freshly cooked rice fluff it with a fork, and spread it out on a large baking sheet to cool while preparing the other fried rice ingredients.
Our favorite is white jasmine rice, but other white varieties are also good. If you prefer a whole-grain option, brown rice may be used for fried rice.
Yes, a large, 12-inch cast iron skillet is also works well, and if you don't have cast iron, select another heavy-bottomed skillet with tall sides.
I hope you enjoy this tasty vegan egg fried rice! If you try the recipe I would LOVE to hear from you. Leave a star rating and comment below to let us know.
Easy Vegan Fried Rice Recipe
- 3 cups cooked rice, cooled or chilled - I prefer white jasmine rice; see Note 1.
- 2 tablespoons neutral oil, such as grapeseed or sunflower
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 large carrot, peeled and diced
- ½ cup frozen peas or shelled edamame
- approx. 2 cups additional chopped mixed vegetables - such as mushrooms, cabbage, corn, onion, snow peas; fresh or frozen.
- 3 green onions, chopped
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari (for GF)
- 1 ½ teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- ½ cup JUST Egg, optional - Plant-based egg product; See Note 2.
- pinch of red pepper flakes, optional
- salt and pepper
- Cooking happens quickly, so it's helpful to have all of the ingredients prepared and ready to go. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a wok or cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add the rice. Stirring occasionally, cook until the rice is toasted and has a lightly chewy texture, about 4 minutes. Transfer rice to a plate.
- Add 2 teaspoons oil to the pan. Cook the vegetables, excluding green onion, until lightly softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Create a hole in the center, and pour the soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, and red pepper flakes directly onto the hot surface. Stir into the vegetables.
- If using ½ cup or less of JUST Egg, you should have enough room to scramble it by pushing the veggies to the side. If you would rather make an egg-heavy fried rice, transfer the veggies to a plate so that you'll have more room (JUST egg is very liquid and will spread). Add the vegan egg to the skillet/wok and cook for about 1 minute, tossing and scrambling.
- Mix the scrambled JUST Egg into the veggies. Return the rice to the pan, and add the green onion. Stir to incorporate. Taste and season with salt, pepper, or additional soy sauce, if desired. Serve immediately.
Estimated Nutrition (per serving)
Nutrition information is an estimate and will vary depending on the exact amounts and specific products and ingredients used. We calculate this information using the online calculator cronometer.com. For the most accurate nutrition information we recommend calculating it yourself to reflect the specific ingredients used in your dish.