Simple veggie fried rice

July 24, 2022 at 10:11 pm (Chinese, Cruciferous rich, East and SE Asia, Grains, My brain, Quick weeknight recipe, To test on plan, Tofu, unrated, Vegetable dishes)

When I have leftover rice in the fridge and I want a quick lunch or dinner I often make veggie fried rice. Alma likes hers pretty plain, so sometimes I made a first batch pretty plain, with just carrots, tofu, peas, and red cabbage, then I make a second spicy batch with celery, garlic, ginger, chilies, scallions, basil, etc. Then we mix the two together in whatever proportion we prefer.

For the spicier fried rice, I usually start by mincing ginger and garlic, then dice celery and carrots. After that prep is done I start the celery and carrots sautéing in olive oil in my cast iron skillet. While the carrots and celery are cooking I finely cube some tofu and throw that in as well. When the tofu is lightly browned on all sides I add some thinly sliced red cabbage (or green, or napa), the garlic, and the ginger. I might throw in some roasted peanuts as well. After about a minute I add the brown rice and wait for it to brown a little. Once it’s a little bit browned I add frozen green peas until they are warmed through, then I add 2 eggs (beaten as below). Finally, I top the fried rice off with sliced scallions, julienned basil (thai basil if I have it) and chili sauce. That’s my go-to combination but if I don’t have celery or carrots or cabbage or scallions it’s not a problem, I just leave them out. If I have other veggies around (like zucchini, mushrooms, cauliflower, bok choy, bean sprouts, or broccoli) I might chop them finely and add them as well at the appropriate time.

I don’t usually measure anything, but if you want to see some possible amounts there is one more detailed recipe below.

Original post from April 26, 2010: I threw together a quick skillet of veggie fried rice today, and Derek said it was excellent and I should blog about it.  Unfortunately, I didn’t measure anything, but here’s my best guess at what I did.


  • 1.5 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 medium zucchini, sliced into half circles
  • 2 large cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 tsp. chili flakes
  • 1 Tbs. soy sauce
  • 1.5 cups cooked short grain brown rice
  • 1 cup of seasoned, frozen tofu (I used a kind of Asian marinade)
  • 2 eggs beaten with a dash of milk and salt and pepper
  • 2 scallions, sliced
  • 2 cups cauliflower marinated with fennel and coriander seeds (from the recent NYT article on quick pickles–mine were pretty low salt)
  • 1 cup green peas
  • 2 Tbs. roasted peanuts


  1. Heat 1/2 Tbs. of olive oil over medium-high heat in a 12-inch skillet.  When the oil is hot add the zucchini slices and cook, stirring occasionally, until the slices start to brown.  Add the garlic and chili flakes and 1/2 Tbs. soy sauce, and saute for another minute.  Push the zucchini to the circumference of the pan and add another 1/2 Tbs. oil to the middle. Add the brown rice and use your spatula to break up any clumps.  Add the tofu. Let cook for two minutes. Move the mixture to a plate.
  2. Add the final 1/2 Tbs. of olive oil to the pan.  When hot add the beaten eggs and scramble.  When almost done add the sliced scallions, stir, and move the eggs to the plate.
  3. Add the cauliflower and peas and heat until warm.  Toss back in all the other ingredients (from the plate), sprinkle with the peanuts, and stir to mix.  Serve immediately.

1 Comment

  1. Healthy vegetarian breakfast ideas | The captious vegetarian said,

    […] but I have trouble cooking them to the right degree, and the ramekins are a pain to clean. Maybe veggie fried rice or cauliflower fried rice? Other ideas? I know we can just eat standard lunch and dinner foods (or […]

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