6 Desi-Style Fried Rice Varieties For Weekday Dinners

Rice is a staple in Indian cuisine and can be added to meals in a variety of ways such as comforting dal-khichdi and spicy biryani. Easy to prepare, it is also consumed with a plethora of curries, dal and condiments. Even the leftover rice from the previous meal is very useful because it acts as a saviour during the busy weekdays when you have limited time for meal preparation. Within minutes you can transform leftover rice into several delicious and flavourful delights such as risotto, burritos and everyone’s favourite fried rice. 

Speaking particularly about fried rice, this is basically prepared with cooked rice by stir-frying it in a wok or frying pan. It is usually mixed with other ingredients like eggs, vegetables, meat or seafood and is seasoned with a lot of spices and sauces. Loaded with plenty of flavours, each region in the world has their own variations of fried rice such as omurice (Japan), Fujian fried rice (China), khao pad sapparod (Thailand) and Nasi Goreng (Indonesia). Coming to India, there are many desi styles of preparing this dish in both vegetarian and non-vegetarian versions. 

Chicken Fried Rice  

Made with soft, tender and succulent pieces of chicken, this easy and flavourful dish takes only 15 minutes to get ready. All you have to do is combine pre-cooked rice with garlic, soya sauce, vinegar, pepper and your favourite vegetables in a wok and toss it with marinated and stir-fried chicken. You can also add egg into the recipe for an extra flavour and boost protein value.  

Vegetable Fried Rice   

This is the most simple and quickest fried rice recipe you can prepare for dinner. Made with a hearty mix of carrots, cauliflower, peas, green onions and potatoes, it can be ready in less than half an hour. Seasoned with black pepper powder, soy sauce, ginger and garlic, it is incredibly delicious and flavourful. Cooking veg fried rice is also a great way of using your leftover vegetables in the fridge. It goes well with veg manchurian or chilli paneer. 

Egg Fried Rice   

This Indo-Chinese aromatic preparation is packed with health as well as taste, making it a great post-workout meal. It is also a common item in the menu of most Chinese restaurants. Made within half an hour, you can also combine your favourite vegetables into the recipe such as mushrooms, carrots and bell peppers. To prepare the dish all you have to do is break eggs into a bowl, beat it until fluffy and pour into the wok while cooking the rice and spices and enjoy with a variety of sauces or chilli oil.  

Pineapple Fried Rice   

Though you may feel like pineapple is an odd addition to the rice, but its sweet taste will perfectly complement the tangy and spicy flavours of other ingredients. To prepare this unusual dish, cook pineapple chunks with leftover rice, butter, garlic, spring onion, curry powder and soya sauce. You can also garnish the dish with lightly fried cashews for added crunch and good fats.  

Prawn Fried Rice   

Besides chicken and egg, seafood is also a great addition to fried rice for non-vegetarians. Made with capsicum, soy sauce, vinegar, ginger-garlic and spices, prawn fried rice is a crowd pleaser during family dinners. However, its recipe is a bit lengthy than the other fried rice dishes due to the marination process. For the best results, mix the prawns with salt, chilli powder, vinegar and soy sauce and let it sit for at least 1 hour before adding to the rice.  

Schezwan Fried Rice  

Schezwan sauce is an Indo-Chinese condiment which is said to have originated in Kolkata. Made with red chillies, garlic, vinegar and sichuan peppers, it has a hot and spicy taste. When you add this sauce to rice, it gives a spicy and tangy flavour which balances the sweet, sour and hot taste of other ingredients. Feel free to add eggs and chopped vegetables to your schezwan rice.