Fried and healthy? This loaded healthy fried rice will become your favourite if you love rice like me and are counting calories for weight loss. highly nutritious, low-fat and super filling meal you can eat for breakfast, lunch or dinner! Gluten-free and vegan options included!
My version of this healthy fried rice tastes as good as your Chinese takeout one, I promise but on a much healthier note. Fried rice often served in restaurants is surely tasty but high fat and sodium contents in it not, of course, suitable for weight loss goals. Also, they use fewer vegetables leaving your stomach empty very soon after consuming it. So skip the take out and make this real healthiest version of it in less than 30 minutes.
If you are too busy to stand and cook consider my oven-baked fried rice
This healthy fried rice is ideal for weight loss or calorie counting diets and is
- super flavourful
- nutrient-rich with many low-calorie vegetables.
- loaded with proteins from eggs.
- less fat using minimal sesame oil(high source of unsaturated fats)
- Low on sodium levels.
- Keeps you full with fewer calories.
Being a core rice lover and an ever needy weight loss aspirant and a fan of quick-cooking, this is the god-sent recipe for me if I may say so. Can you imagine I am so crazy that I can actually finish 5 bowls of plain white rice in less than 3 minutes? No kidding, the madness is real so as my pillowy stomach right now.
Ingredients and substitutes
Cold rice – the key to getting authentic restaurant-style fried rice is to use cold or leftover rice,.the texture of the cold rice will be little firmer s perfect for frying without getting mashed which is the key for perfect fried rice.
Eggs – obviously if you want to make egg fried rice or to even up your protein game. I use yolk as well and if you prefer just whites, go ahead.
Vegetables – now to the most interesting part. This fried rice becomes healthy and ideal for weight loss only when you add all the recommended vegetables. One trick to bulk up the fried rice is to add loads of finely chopped cabbage which acts as rice. I also used low-calorie vegetables like mushrooms, carrots and frozen green peas along with the mandatory spring onions. the more vegetables you add to the fried rice the more filling it becomes. You could also add tiny florets of broccoli too. A filling meal is a true best friend for weight loss, you know!
Oil – the best oil for fried rice I found good personally is sesame oil which is a good source of unsaturated fats. If you want to reduce your risk of heart disease, experts recommend it’s best to reduce your overall fat intake and swap saturated fats for unsaturated fats. I used very less amount possible 🙂
Brown Rice or White rice for Fried Rice?
I am a big fan of using brown rice for the fried rice as the firmness of the grains is more suitable for frying on high temperatures. also, it has more fibre content and is supposed to keep you fuller for a long time when compared to white rice. But I have no hard preference and I enjoy eating both equally.
How about using Cauliflower rice?
Why not if you can tolerate not having any actual rice in the fried rice! Make sure the cauli rice has no moisture in it and use the same recipe below. You could also use 50-50 of rice and cauliflower rice to get you started with.
Whatever variety you choose, try to bulk up the dish with more vegetables and less rice if you are trying to eat for weight loss, this is my most favourite way to eat fried rice in my healthy fitness journey.
You might want to check my other healthy rice recipes here
Tips for making the best fried rice
- Long grain or basmati or short-grain? – my vote is to use short grain rice as basmati tends to break into pieces and also too tender to fry on high temperatures.(I have used basmati in the photos shown, need a food shop soon)
- Using cold rice is a must in my opinion. Rice at least one day old kept in the fridge is the best even. If you don’t have any leftover rice, spread the freshly cooked in a plate evenly, allow it to cool down and keep in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. This will make the grains firmer.
- Use loads of vegetables to increase the filling power and make it an ideal healthy fried rice for your weight loss needs.
- Use a non-stick pan or a wide wok. Using non-stick pan helps as it needs less oil, but you can actually make it in a normal wok too if you are good at scraping 🙂 coz we are not using much oil here to fry the egg or veggies. I wish not to direct this discussion towards the disadvantages of using nonstick cookware etc to keep up with the current context.
- Try to fry the rice and veggies in high flame as much as possible to give that smoky flavour to the dish. Also, we don’t want the veggies to become mushy or even too soft, but just soft enough yet crunchy.
- I find using sesame oil gives the best taste to my egg and vegetables fried rice, it is also a good source of unsaturated fats. Whatever oil you use, try to stick to a teaspoon or two.
- Good quality freshly ground pepper and sea salt or lightly crushed rock salt. I also tried using ground white pepper but I like the crushed black pepper version.
Video recipe for Healthy Fried Rice
Can I make this vegan and gluten-free?
- Absolutely! To make this rice vegan, either skip the egg or use firm tofu pieces instead. Start with stir-frying tofu by seasoning with salt, pepper, red chilli flakes(option) and few drops of soy sauce. Keep them aside and proceed with the recipe as usual.
- You can also use Quorn pieces that are completely a plant-based protein you get in the freezer section of the supermarkets. Few people have digestion issues with Quorn so you might want to try experimenting with little portions first to see if your gut can tolerate.
- To make it gluten-free, use coconut aminos instead of soy sauce.
Fried stays goods in the fridge for 2 days. When you are ready to eat, just microwave it on full power for 1-2 minutes. I often do it in a skillet or pan with some additional cooking spray. Make sure the grains didn’t turn out very hard, if so please do not eat as it can lead to digestion issues.
How about Freezing fried rice?
You can indeed for upto a month, providing you cool it quickly and freeze it as soon as it’s cooled. Also, reheat it until it’s piping hot right through once it’s defrosted.
I personally don’t freeze anything made of egg though.
- Fried rice is usually best eaten as it is, but you can serve with a dollop of tomato ketchup if you like.
- If you still have calorie allowances left for the day, serve with some infused chilli oil.
- You can serve with some additional proteins like stir fried tofu and baked Manchurian balls etc(will post recipes)
- This can be a great lunch box recipe too.
Weight Loss Tips
- Use more chopped cabbage that gets blended with rice easily and bulk up the fried rice. Chop it very fine to make it resemble rice.
- Use plenty of low-calorie vegetables like carrots, peas, broccoli, grated cauliflower, mushrooms.
- Non-stick pan won’t demand you much oil, whatever fat you use, try to limit it.
- Use brown rice instead of white to increase the fibre content which keeps you full for longer.
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