What is Beef Fried Rice? A Delicious Rice Dish With Beef, Veggies, and Flavorful Sauce

Beef fried rice is a popular Chinese takeout dish and stir fry made with tender beef, rice, vegetables, eggs, and a savory sauce. It is a complete one-pan meal that is easy to make at home. With just a few ingredients you likely have on hand, you can create a restaurant-quality beef fried rice any night of the week.

What Makes Beef Fried Rice So Tasty?

There are a few key components that make beef fried rice so delicious:


Thinly sliced beef is quickly stir-fried to create flavorful, tender pieces of beef throughout the rice. Flank steak, sirloin, or skirt steak are common cuts used. The beef is marinated before cooking to help tenderize it and impart flavor. Just a bit of baking soda in the marinade can help break down proteins in tougher cuts of meat.


Precooked rice is used, preferably cold, day old rice. This helps the rice grains stay separated and the exterior stays dry and crispy when fried. Long grain white rice is traditional, but brown rice or cauliflower rice can also be used.


A quick sauce made with broth, soy sauce, sesame oil, and spices adds tons of flavor. The sauce coats each rice grain during cooking.


Onions, peas, carrots, and scallions add color, crunch, and freshness.


Scrambled eggs add extra protein and give the rice a silkier texture.

Wok Hei

Wok hei refers to the smoky, toasted flavor achieved from high heat stir frying. A very hot wok and a splash of wine tossed at the end imparts wok hei.

Step-By-Step Instructions

Follow these simple steps for restaurant-worthy beef fried rice at home:

Prep the Ingredients

  • Slice beef thinly across the grain. Marinate in a bit of soy sauce, oil, cornstarch, and baking soda.

  • Cook rice a day ahead and chill completely. Fluff with a fork before using.

  • Whisk eggs in a bowl.

  • Chop onions, carrots, peas, and scallions.

  • Make the sauce by combining broth, soy sauce, sesame oil, and spices.

Cook the Dish

  • Heat 1 Tbsp oil in wok over high heat. Add eggs and scramble, remove and set aside.

  • Add 1 Tbsp oil and sear beef briefly until partially cooked. Remove and set aside.

  • Add remaining oil, onions, carrots and peas, cook briefly.

  • Add rice and sauce. Cook, breaking up clumps, until heated through.

  • Add beef and eggs back to wok and stir to combine.

  • Add scallions.

  • Splash wine around edge of wok to impart wok hei.

  • Adjust seasoning and serve immediately.

Tips for Making the Best Beef Fried Rice

Follow these tips for authentic fried rice with great texture and flavor:

  • Use day old, chilled rice. Freshly cooked rice is too moist.

  • Break up clumps of rice while stir-frying. Use a spatula to flatten and separate grains.

  • Use high heat and work in batches. Overcrowding the wok steams rather than fries.

  • Let rice rest a minute after adding sauce to allow it to absorb flavor before adding other ingredients.

  • Add wine around edge of wok at the end for an authentic charred aroma.

  • Season with additional soy sauce if needed. White pepper adds spice without heat.

  • Serve immediately, fried rice waits for no one!

Ingredient Substitutions

Don’t have an ingredient on hand? Try these easy swaps:

  • Beef: Chicken, shrimp, pork, or tofu can all be used. Adjust marinade and cook times.

  • Rice: Cauliflower rice or quinoa make flavorful low carb options. Other rice varieties work too.

  • Broth: Chicken, beef, or veggie broth all work well. Water with extra seasoning can also be used.

  • Oil: Peanut, vegetable, avocado, or olive oil can be substituted.

  • Wine: Chicken broth with a splash of vinegar.

  • Onions: Shallots, leeks, or chopped cabbage would also be tasty.

How to Store and Reheat Beef Fried Rice

Properly stored fried rice will keep in the fridge 3-4 days. To store:

  • Allow to cool completely and place in airtight container. Glass storage containers work best.

To reheat:

  • In a skillet over medium heat. Add a splash of water to help loosen up the rice.

  • In the microwave, cover and heat in 30 second intervals, stirring between.

  • Can also be reheated in the oven at 300°F covered in foil.

The fried rice may not have quite the same crispy texture once reheated, but will still taste delicious!

Freezing is another great option. Allow to cool completely before transferring to a freezer bag or freezer-safe container. Thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating.

Favorite Variations

Once you master the classic, try one of these fun beef fried rice variations:

  • Mongolian Beef Fried Rice: Swap the traditional sauce for one made with hoisin, rice wine, and chili garlic sauce.

  • Cheesy Beef Fried Rice: Finish with a sprinkle of shredded cheese, green onions, and sesame seeds.

  • Hawaiian Beef Fried Rice: Pineapple, bell pepper, and teriyaki sauce give this a tropical flair.

  • Loaded Beef Fried Rice: Bacon, sausage, ham and veggies like broccoli and mushrooms make this a meal in itself.

  • Spicy Beef Fried Rice: Chili paste, sriracha, or cajun seasoning amp up the heat.

  • Beef and Vegetable Fried Rice: Load it up with your favorite mixed vegetables.

Top Recipe Tips

Follow these expert tips for the perfect beef fried rice every time:

  • Cut beef across the grain for tenderness. Slice beef very thin for quick cooking.

  • Allow rice to dry and separate after cooking. Chilled rice is ideal.

  • Cook beef in two batches. Sear, then stir fry again later with other ingredients.

  • Let wok heat back up between batches for proper stir frying technique.

  • Use a heavy bottomed nonstick wok or skillet for best results.

  • Add wine at the end by pouring around edge of wok. Do not stir in.

  • Work quickly! Once sauce is added have all ingredients ready to combine.

  • Taste and adjust seasoning at the end. Add more soy sauce and white pepper if needed.


Still have questions about how to make beef fried rice? Here are some commonly asked questions:

Can I prepare the rice and beef in advance?

Yes! The rice and marinated beef can both be prepared a day or two ahead of time. Having precooked rice ready makes this dish come together very quickly.

What’s the best cut of beef to use?

Thinly sliced flank steak, sirloin, or skirt steak work best. Look for a cut that is on the leaner side.

Do I really need day old rice?

Older, chilled rice is best for fried rice to get that classic crispy texture. But in a pinch freshly cooked works too. Just be sure to dry out the rice before stir frying.

Is regular soy sauce ok or does it need to be dark?

Dark soy sauce adds richer color and flavor, but regular soy sauce will still taste good. Add a splash of sesame oil for extra flavor.

Can I use brown rice instead?

Yes, brown rice can be substituted 1:1 for white rice. Just be sure to adjust the cooking time if starting with uncooked rice.

What wine is best for fried rice?

An inexpensive dry sherry, rice wine, or white wine like chardonnay or pinot grigio work well. Avoid sweet wines.

How spicy is this dish?

This recipe has just a touch of heat from white pepper. Add sriracha or chili garlic sauce if you want it spicier.

Can I use turkey or chicken instead of beef?

Absolutely! Just reduce marinade time to 10-15 minutes and adjust cooking time accordingly.

So grab some steak, day old rice, and veggies and get stir frying! With this easy recipe, you can enjoy restaurant-worthy beef fried rice from the comfort of your own kitchen.

Frequency of Entities:

thewoksoflife.com: 2
thecozycook.com: 1
what is beef fried rice: 14
beef fried rice: 46
rice: 37
beef: 36
fried: 22
sauce: 10
wok: 9
soy sauce: 5
eggs: 5
veggies: 4
wine: 4
sesame oil: 3
flank steak: 3
sirloin: 2
skirt steak: 2
baking soda: 2
wok hei: 2
scallions: 2
peas: 2
carrots: 2
onions: 2
dark soy sauce: 2
chill: 2
crispy: 2
tender: 2
flavor: 2
delicious: 1
popular: 1
Chinese: 1
takeout: 1
stir fry: 1
complete: 1
one-pan: 1
meal: 1
few: 1
ingredients: 1
likely: 1
hand: 1
restaurant-quality: 1
night: 1
week: 1
makes: 1
tasty: 1
key: 1
thinly: 1
sliced: 1
quickly: 1
create: 1
throughout: 1
marinated: 1
cooking: 1
impart: 1
flavor: 1
precooked: 1
preferably: 1
old: 1
exterior: 1
stays: 1
dry: 1
crispy: 1
fried: 1
long grain: 1
white: 1
traditional: 1
brown: 1
cauliflower: 1
quick: 1
broth: 1
spices: 1
coats: 1
grain: 1
color: 1
crunch: 1
freshness: 1
extra: 1
protein: 1
silkier: 1
texture: 1
smoky: 1
toasted: 1
high heat: 1
splash: 1
follow: 1
simple: 1
thin: 1
across: 1
break: 1
proteins: 1
tougher: 1
whisk: 1
chop: 1
heat: 1
oil: 1
wok: 1
sear: 1
partially: 1
cooked: 1
remaining: 1
briefly: 1
heated: 1
combine: 1
adjust: 1
serve: 1
immediately: 1
restaurant-worthy: 1
great: 1
texture: 1
work: 1
batches: 1
overcrowding: 1
steams: 1
fries: 1
absorb: 1
flavor: 1
ingredients: 1
edge: 1
charred: 1
aroma: 1
needed: 1
spice: 1
without: 1
heat: 1
hand: 1
easy: 1
swaps: 1
shrimp: 1
pork: 1
tofu: 1
cauliflower: 1
quinoa: 1
low carb: 1
varieties: 1
veggie: 1
avocado: 1
olive: 1
vinegar: 1
shallots: 1
leeks: 1
cabbage: 1
store: 1
allow: 1
cool: 1
completely: 1
airtight: 1
container: 1
glass: 1
storage: 1
reheat: 1
skillet: 1
medium: 1
splash: 1
water: 1
loosen: 1
rice: 1
microwave: 1
cover: 1
heat: 1
intervals: 1
stirring: 1
oven: 1
foil: 1
texture: 1
delicious: 1
freezing: 1
option: 1
freezer: 1
bag: 1
thaw: 1
overnight: 1
fridge: 1
master: 1
classic: 1
fun: 1
variations: 1
mongolian: 1
hoisin: 1
rice wine: 1
chili: 1
garlic: 1
sauce: 1
cheesy: 1
finish: 1
sprinkle: 1
shredded: 1
cheese: 1
green: 1
onions: 1
sesame: 1
seeds: 1
hawaiian: 1
pineapple: 1
bell: 1
pepper: 1
teriyaki: 1
tropical: 1
flair: 1
loaded: 1
bacon: 1
sausage: 1
ham: 1
broccoli: 1
mushrooms: 1
itself: 1
spicy: 1
sriracha: 1
cajun: 1
seasoning: 1
amp: 1
mixed: 1
follow: 1
expert: 1
across: 1
grain: 1
tenderness: 1
cooking: 1
sear: 1
batches: 1
ingredients: 1
properly: 1
3-4: 1
days: 1
cool: 1
completely: 1
place: 1
airtight: 1
glass: 1
best: 1
skillet: 1
medium: 1
splash: 1
loosen: 1
texture: 1
allow: 1
completely: 1
transferring: 1
freezer: 1
safe: 1
thaw: 1
overnight: 1
fridge: 1
questions: 1
commonly: 1
asked: 1
prepare: 1
advance: 1
precooked: 1
ready: 1
together: 1
quickly: 1
cut: 1
leaner: 1
old: 1
really: 1
pinch: 1
freshly: 1
cooked: 1
sure: 1
brown: 1
adjust: 1
cooking: 1
starting: 1
uncooked: 1
inexpensive: 1
dry: 1
sherry: 1
avoid: 1
sweet: 1
heat: 1
touch: 1
amp: 1
garlic: 1
sauce: 1
turkey: 1
chicken: 1
grab: 1
steak: 1
veg: 1
fry: 1
enjoy: 1
restaurant-worthy: 1
comfort: 1
kitchen: 1

Beef Fried Rice with a twist!


What is considered fried rice?

Fried rice is a dish of cooked rice that has been stir-fried in a wok or a frying pan and is usually mixed with other ingredients such as eggs, vegetables, seafood, or meat. It is often eaten by itself or as an accompaniment to another dish.

Why does Chinese fried rice taste so good?

The answer: high heat, expert tosses, and something known as ‘wok hei. As J. Kenji López-Alt writes for Serious Eats, expert cooking with a wok (and the gas range it requires) is one of the main reasons that fried rice from a Chinese restaurant tastes so much better than what you can make at home.

What is the meaning of fry rice?

noun. : a dish of boiled or steamed rice that is stir-fried typically with soy sauce, beaten egg, chopped meat, and vegetables.

Leave a Comment