Quick ketchup fried rice – this is the perfect recipe for using leftover cooked rice or vegetables. A no-fuss rice dish that’s ready in about 20 minutes.
The ketchup fried rice is a quick and comforting meal, comforting and delicious after a long day, and perfect for using any kind of leftovers you might have in your refrigerator.
And if you like fried rice, check out our Simple Tuna Fried Rice or the Fried Rice with Spam and Eggs.
Why will you love this recipe?
- Quick: Dinner should be on the table in less than 30 minutes.
- Super versatile: You can use any veggies you happen to have in your fridge, you can use frozen or canned vegetables, can add chicken, other cooked meats, or deli meats.
- Family-favorite: The kind of food that kids love. Rice, ketchup, eggs, carrots, and green peas – that’s children’s food all the way.
- Lunch box: Ketchup fried rice is suitable for taking to work or school in a box, for picnics, and so on.
- Basmati or Jasmine rice are both great for making fried rice.
- You can also use brown rice or a mixture of Basmati and wild rice, just keep in mind that the texture will be slightly different (chewier but delicious) and that these sorts of rice need to be cooked for longer (check the package instructions, they usually need about 30 minutes).
- Vegetables: Carrots, onions, garlic, bell pepper, peas. However, you can use most anything you have in the refrigerator. See below for more ideas.
- Sauce ingredients: Ketchup, soy sauce, fish sauce, sesame oil, and ground black pepper.
- Garnish with green or spring onions, toasted sesame seeds, and a few sprigs of parsley, if you have any.
Swaps or add-in ingredients
- Use other vegetables, like zucchini, mushrooms, sugar snap peas, broccoli, green beans, or cauliflower.
- Use canned veggies like corn, peas, or frozen vegetables.
- Add cooked chicken pieces, pork, or beef (leftovers from any roast).
- Chopped ham, bacon, or other deli meats are great as well.
- Leave the eggs or replace the scrambled eggs with fried eggs.
- Add red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, sriracha, sambal oelek, or another hot chili sauce to make the dish spicy.
- Prepare everything before you start cooking: Chop the vegetables. Whisk the eggs with a bit of salt and pepper in a small bowl.
- Eggs: Heat the vegetable oil in a wok or a large pan and cook the eggs on medium heat for a few minutes until cooked yet slightly wet (1,2). Remove them from the pan.
- Cook the vegetables (onions, garlic, carrots, pepper, and peas) in the remaining oil for about 2 minutes (3).
- Add the cold rice, ketchup, soy sauce, fish sauce, sesame oil, and a generous amount of black pepper (4).
- Stir fry on medium-high heat for 3-4 minutes or until the rice is heated through.
- Adjust the taste, if necessary, but it probably won’t be required.
- Garnish with green onions, sesame seeds, and a bit of chopped parsley (5).
- Using day-old rice is mandatory for making good fried rice; freshly cooked grains will make the dish soggy.
- You can use leftover rice, otherwise, plan ahead and cook the grains the day before. Chill the rice quickly and refrigerate in an airtight container until ready to cook.
- Get everything ready before cooking; the cooking steps are fast, and you will not have enough time to chop or measure anything once the cooking starts.
- Don’t overcook the vegetables; they should not become mushy.
Long-grain rice, like Basmati or Jasmine. For best results, cook it one day ahead.
Refrigerate ketchup rice in an airtight container; it will keep for about 3 days.
Freeze the meal in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Defrost in the fridge.
Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop.
How to serve?
- Serve with a bit of extra ketchup if you like it.
- Make a salad, steam or roast some vegetables, and serve them with ketchup fried rice.
More Asian-style dishes
Quick Ketchup Fried Rice
- Wok or large skillet
- 3 cups day-old cooked rice 350 g/ 12 oz, Notes 1,2,3
- 2 tablespoons oil divided
- 3 eggs
- ½ onion finely chopped, about 50 g
- 2 garlic cloves large
- ½ cup carrots diced about 50 g
- ½ cup red bell peppers diced about 50 g
- ½ cup peas about 50 g
- 2 tablespoons ketchup
- 1 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 2 green onions
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds roasted
- a few sprigs of parsley optional
- fine sea salt and ground black pepper
- Prepare the vegetables: Finely chop the onions and the garlic and dice the carrots and bell pepper. Set aside.
- Cook the eggs: Whisk the eggs with a pinch of salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large pan. Cook the eggs until set; they should not be completely dry. Transfer them to a plate.
- Cook the vegetables: Add the remaining oil to the pan. Cook all the vegetables (except for the green onions) on medium-high heat for about 2 minutes.
- Fry the rice: Add rice, ketchup, soy sauce, fish sauce, sesame oil, and black pepper. Stir fry for 3-4 minutes or until hot.
- Chop the scrambled eggs and fold them in gently.
- Adjust the taste with salt and pepper if necessary.
- Garnish: Stir in the chopped green onions. Sprinkle with the roasted sesame seeds and some parsley and serve immediately.
- Long-grain white rice like Basmati or Jasmine rice.
- Cook the rice one day in advance and chill it.
- To get 3 cups of cooked rice, you will need to cook about 1 1/3 cups of rice.