For delicious but healthy comfort food that tastes like take-out, try this easy vegan fried rice! It’s naturally gluten free, freezer friendly, incredibly easy to make and features an incredibly simple tofu scramble to make it egg-free!
I don’t know about you, but I’m all about the freezer and pantry friendly recipes these days. Especially ones that are big on flavor, easy to make ready in under 30 minutes, which is exactly what this vegan fried rice is!
This simple recipe tastes like it came straight from a restaurant, but you can control everything that goes into it.
Most fried rice contains scrambled eggs so it is not considered vegan. This recipe uses tofu scramble to keep things completely plant based!
Plus, it can be frozen! While this recipe will keep in the fridge for about 5 days, it will be good in the freezer for about 2 months in a freezer safe bag or container.
Some say the secrete ingredient to fried rice is butter, so if you want to add extra flavor, add in 2 tablespoons of your favorite vegan butter to the mix!
Do your future self a favor and make a double batch and keep any extras in the freezer ASAP! If you love this recipe, try my cauliflower rice next!
How to make fried rice
First things first, if your rice isn’t already cooked, do that now! You need 3 cups of cooked rice which is equal to 1 cup uncooked white rice.
You are welcome to use frozen as well! If using frozen, use a bit more than 3 cups since it’ll shrink as it defrosts.
While that’s happening, there are two main steps to making this recipe. The first step is to make the simple tofu scramble, which takes all of five minutes. The second is to make the main rice/veggie dish!
To make the scramble: Remove the tofu from the package and drain out any excess liquid. Take half the block and cut into cubes.
Add the tofu to a pan with the oil. Using the back of a fork, mash the tofu until it has a scrambled egg consistency, retaining some larger pieces. You can make it as mashed as you like, but in this recipe I think it works best with some texture.
Add the turmeric, salt and garlic powder to the tofu and stir together over low heat. Let cook, uncovered, for about 5 minutes to blend all of the flavors.
To make the rice: Meanwhile, finely dice the onion and add to a pot with the oil. Saute for about 2-3 minutes or until it softens slightly and becomes very fragrant.
Add in the minced garlic and ginger and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until the garlic browns very slightly.
Add in the peeled and chopped carrots and saute for about 5 minutes to let them soften. I like to chop the carrots pretty small.
Next, add in the corn and peas and let cook until defrosted (assuming you’re using frozen).
I used peas and corn that were frozen separately, but you can also get bags of frozen carrots, peas and corn and use all of that together. If using that, you’ll need a total of 2 cups worth.
Whisk together the soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil and chili garlic sauce.
If you don’t have the chili garlic sauce, feel free to omit or you can sub for oyster sauce if you have that instead. Add the sauce and rice to the pot of veggies and mix well to combine.
Carefully fold in the tofu, trying not to let it smush into everything else since it’s a bit delicate! Let everything simmer and lightly fry to absorb all of the flavors for about 5 minutes.
The longer it sits, the more flavorful it gets! Top with chopped scallions and sesame seeds.
Make it a meal!
Thanks to the tofu and veggies in this recipe, this is a main dish all on it’s own! The tofu adds a lot of protein so it’s a perfect dinner or lunch recipe.
However, if you want something more, you can serve it with my sesame cauliflower, orange cauliflower, teriyaki salmon or some extra steamed veggies on the side.
How to store and freeze
Once prepared, this vegan fried rice will keep in the fridge for 3-5 days in an air tight container.
It’s totally freezer friendly too, so just allow it to cool, then transfer to a freezer safe bag or container and it’ll keep for up to 3 months.
You can reheat it right on the stove until it’s warmed through and enjoy!
Variations & tips
This recipe calls for 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) of gluten free soy sauce (also known as tamari) or regular soy sauce.
I always use low sodium soy sauce in my recipes because things can get quite salty really quickly if you’re not careful! I usually add a bit more than 4 tablespoons because I love the umami flavor it brings, but start with 4 tablespoons and add more to fit your preferences.
If you don’t want make it soy free, you can omit the tofu scramble and use coconut aminos instead of soy sauce. The flavor will be a bit different, but still delicious!
Feel free to add any additional veggies of your choice! I kept it pretty classic (minus the corn), but you can add in some broccoli, bell peppers, or even pineapple!
While there isn’t one type of rice that is best for fried rice, I personally prefer short grain white rice. You can use brown rice as well, but I think short grain is preferable to long grain for this recipe.
Try these next!
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Vegan Fried Rice
by: claire cary
- 3 cups cooked short grain white rice 1 cup uncooked
- 1 medium white or yellow onion
- 4 cloves garlic
- 2 teaspoons fresh minced ginger
- 2 medium/large carrots peeled and chopped
- 1 cup peas
- ½ cup corn
- 4 tbsp low sodium tamari or soy sauce or more to taste
- 2 teaspoons brown sugar
- 1-2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon chili garlic sauce
- ½ block extra firm tofu
- ¼ teaspoon ground turmeric
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 teaspoon olive oil
- First things first, if your rice isn’t already cooked, do that now! You need 3 cups of cooked rice which is equal to 1 cup uncooked white rice.
- Remove the tofu from the package and drain out any excess liquid. Take half the block and cut into cubes.
- Add to a pan with the oil. Using the back of a fork, mash the tofu until it has a scrambled egg consistency, retaining some larger pieces.
- Add the turmeric, salt and garlic powder and stir together over low heat. Let cook, uncovered, for about 5 minutes to blend all of the flavors.
- Meanwhile, finely dice the onion and add to a pot with the oil. Saute for about 2-3 minutes or until it softens slightly.
- Add in the minced garlic and ginger and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.
- Add in the peeled and chopped carrots and saute for about 5 minutes to let them soften.
- Next, add in the corn and peas and let cook until defrosted (assuming you’re using frozen).
- Whisk together the soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil and chili garlic sauce.
- Add the sauce and rice to the pot of veggies and mix well to combine.
- Carefully fold in the tofu and let simmer to lightly fry and absorb all of the flavors for about 5 minutes.
- The longer it sits, the more flavorful it gets! After about 5 minutes, taste and add any additional sauces or seasonings as desired.
- Top with chopped scallions and sesame seeds.
This was so delicious! Great flavor, with the perfect hint of spice. Super easy to make as well. I will definitely make this one again!
Claire Cary says
Thanks Morgan! So happy you enjoyed it!
I made this recipe yesterday and omg! It was so good! My husband really liked It.
Claire Cary says
Thanks Claudia, so glad it was a hit!