Fried rice is one of the most popular dishes out there, and for good reason. Not only is it incredibly tasty and versatile, but you typically make fried rice using leftover, fully cooked rice, making it easy to throw together. If there is one downside to fried rice, it’s that there isn’t a whole lot of nutritional value to it. Now, thanks to recipe developer Hayley MacLean’s quinoa fried rice recipe, you can enjoy the tasty dish all while knowing that it’s packed with nutrients!
"My favorite thing about this recipe is how flavorful and nourishing it is," MacLean says. "It is full of protein and fiber and the sauce is light and delicious — it is hard to eat just one bowl!" MacLean also notes that, unlike rice, quinoa is full of protein. "While rice has its own merits, I think this quinoa fried rice is a much healthier version of a ‘typical’ fried rice!" If you are looking for a tasty way to use up some leftover quinoa and get a healthy serving of vegetables, this recipe will leave you full and satisfied.
Gather the ingredients to make the quinoa fried rice
Before you can dive into this recipe, you’ll want to make sure that you have the right ingredients. For starters, you’ll need some olive oil, eggs, peeled and diced carrots, a diced onion, minced garlic, and frozen peas. Of course, you’ll also need some cooked quinoa, and MacLean says that she prefers using leftover quinoa as opposed to freshly cooked. "Having spent a day or two in the fridge allows the quinoa to dry out a bit and not become mushy when cooking it — giving it that traditional fried rice texture," she explains. To give the dish some flavor, you’ll need soy sauce, oyster sauce, toasted sesame oil, salt, and pepper, Finally, you’ll want some thinly sliced scallions and sesame seeds for garnish.
Start by scrambling the eggs
Now that you have your ingredients sorted, you can begin making this dish. First, heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat, then pour your beaten eggs in. Be sure to stir them occasionally to scramble, until they are cooked to your liking. Once the eggs are ready, put them on a plate and set them aside.
Cook the vegetables in the pan
Add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil to the skillet and turn the heat up to medium-high. Add the diced carrot and onion into the skillet and allow them to cook until softened, for about 5 minutes. The onion should begin to look translucent as it cooks through. Add the garlic and cook for another minute, allowing the wonderful flavor to absorb into the vegetables, while the fragrance fills up your kitchen. Finally, add in the frozen peas and cook everything for another 2 to 3 minutes. You’ll know that the peas have warmed when they plump up.
Fry the quinoa with the rest of the ingredients and serve
Now that the veggies are cooked through, you can add the quinoa, soy sauce, oyster sauce, and toasted sesame oil into the skillet. Give everything a stir, and then cook for an extra 3 to 5 minutes, allowing the quinoa to fry. Drop the scrambled eggs into the mix, stir everything together, and you’re ready to serve! Garnish the dish with sliced scallions and sesame seeds for a final touch.
"This dish could definitely be paired with a main protein to make a complete meal," MacLean suggests. "Some chicken or salmon with a teriyaki glaze would be wonderful — or you could even chop them up and mix them in with the rice." If you end up with leftovers, you can keep them in the fridge for up to five days or even freeze them for up to three months.
Try a twist on your usual fried rice dinner by substituting the grain for quinoa. A flavor-packed meal packed with nutrients is great any night of the week.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
- 1 small white onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup frozen peas
- 4 cups cooked quinoa
- 4 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons oyster sauce
- ½ teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- 3 scallions, thinly sliced, to garnish
- ½ tablespoon sesame seeds to garnish
- Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Add the beaten eggs and cook while stirring occasionally until they are scrambled and cooked through.
- Transfer the scrambled eggs to a plate and set it aside.
- Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the skillet and turn the heat to medium-high.
- Add the carrot and onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
- Add the garlic and cook for another minute,
- Add the peas and continue to cook until they are warmed through and plump, about 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add the cooked quinoa, soy sauce, oyster sauce, and toasted sesame oil and stir to combine.
- Cook for an additional 3 to 5 minutes to fry the quinoa.
- Add the scrambled eggs into the mixture and mix well.
- Remove from heat and serve immediately, garnished with scallions and sesame seeds.