Pork fried rice is an extremely popular dish in Chinese take-out. Anything that combines rice and pork is sure to be a hit with Chinese food enthusiasts. At my parents’ restaurant, we often served pork fried rice as a side dish to complement various main courses, resulting in a steady stream of orders.
Note: This recipe was originally published on our blog in October 2014. We have updated it with more useful information and links as of September 2019, but the recipe itself remains unchanged. Enjoy!
What’s in Pork Fried Rice?
You may be wondering why the pork used in take-out pork fried rice has a red color. The reason is that it’s actually char siu, a type of Chinese BBQ pork with a sweet flavor and a glossy, brick-red crust on the outside.
If you haven’t had the chance to try char siu pork before, I highly recommend making your own using boneless pork shoulder or butt, along with our easy char siu recipe. The entire process takes just an hour from start to finish!
Once you’ve prepared it, you can freeze chunks of char siu and use them in this pork fried rice recipe or in other dishes like roast pork with Chinese vegetables, steamed pork buns, or roast pork puffs.
However, if you have a good Chinese supermarket or restaurant nearby that sells BBQ pork, you can always purchase it instead. Asian grocery stores with a hot bar often prepare fresh batches of BBQ pork daily.
The Best Rice for Fried Rice
When it comes to fried rice, we highly recommend using jasmine rice, which also happens to be our everyday rice of choice. It’s a fragrant, long-grain rice with a delightful texture that consistently yields perfect fried rice. We usually opt for high-quality premium jasmine rice imported from Thailand.
Before making fried rice, the rice must be cooked. We frequently receive questions about whether it’s better to use freshly cooked rice or leftover cold rice for this dish.
Our answer is simple: either option works! Using leftover rice may be slightly easier, especially if you’re new to wok cooking, as it has less moisture and is easier to separate into individual grains. However, if you didn’t plan ahead, you can always cook a batch of rice in your rice cooker specifically for making fried rice.
While pork fried rice may not sound glamorous at first, when executed correctly, it is truly amazing. Just writing about it is making me hungry!
Pork Fried Rice Recipe Instructions
To start, combine hot water, honey, sesame oil, Shaoxing wine (or dry sherry), soy sauce, dark soy sauce, and white pepper in a small bowl. This mixture will serve as the sauce that you’ll add to the rice, so it’s best to have it ready before you begin cooking.
Fluff the cooked rice using a fork or your hands (rinse your hands with cold water if the rice starts sticking to them). Make sure there are no large clumps.
Over medium heat, add a tablespoon of oil to the wok and sauté the onions until they become translucent.
Then, add the roast pork to the wok.
Add the rice and mix everything together. If the rice is cold from the refrigerator, stir-fry until the rice is warmed, which should take about 5 minutes. If the rice is freshly cooked, simply mix until all the ingredients are evenly incorporated.
Regarding fried rice, leftovers are the best. But how did you initially cook the rice? If you haven’t purchased a rice cooker yet, I strongly recommend considering it. Look for a simple rice cooker without too many fancy features! Check out our Chinese Cooking Tools page for more information and helpful product links.
Next, add the sauce mixture and salt to the wok, and mix it with a scooping motion until the rice is evenly coated. Use the wok spatula to break up any remaining clumps of rice. Don’t worry too much about perfection; the rice should be hot by this point.
Throw in the mung bean sprouts…
Mix everything thoroughly for another minute or two, and it’s ready to serve!
I must say, it looks pretty authentic!
And it’s even better with a splash of hot sauce!
Don’t forget to try our classic chicken fried rice, another easy homemade dish. If you’re in the mood for vegetables, give our vegetable fried rice a go. For something a little different, our shrimp fried rice with Thai basil is a great option. And if you’re feeling adventurous, give our Cantonese chicken and salted fish fried rice a try.
Enjoy these delightful fried rice dishes with your loved ones!