This vegan fried rice is so quick and easy to make. It uses frozen vegetables so it can be ready in 30 minutes. This recipe is the perfect weeknight dinner alternative to Chinese takeout.
If you love Chinese takeout fried rice, you’ll love this vegan alternative.
It uses frozen veggies to save time chopping. Plus you can make it at home whenever you want!
This recipe is also customizable so you can use the ingredients you have on hand.
Leave out the tofu for an even easier veggie fried rice. Or serve it alongside this teriyaki tofu for a complete meal.
So, the next time you find yourself craving takeout, make your own vegan fried rice at home!
Ingredients and Substitutions
You'll need these 12 simple ingredients to make this easy recipe.
For the rice:
- Rice – Use cooked day-old rice that has been chilled in the fridge for the best results. I used and recommend jasmine rice, but any long-grain white rice or brown rice will do.
- Peas and carrots – Use frozen peas and carrots to keep this vegan fried rice recipe quick and easy. If you have fresh carrots you can use them instead.
- Soy Sauce – This gives the recipe its classic salty taste and dark color. Use tamari as a gluten-free replacement.
- Maple syrup – The sweetness of the maple syrup neutralizes the saltiness in the soy sauce. You can use any liquid sweetener you have available.
- Green onions – Use fresh green onions including the white part.
- Garlic – Fresh garlic is best for this recipe, but you can also substitute it for garlic powder.
- Sesame oil – The sesame oil brings the flavors together and I highly suggest it. But if you don’t have any, it can be left out with great tasting results still.
For the tofu:
- Tofu – Extra firm tofu is best for this recipe. You can also use Just Egg as a vegan egg substitute (see the recipe card notes for detailed instructions).
- Oil – I used coconut oil, but any neutral high-heat vegetable oil or vegan butter can be used.
- Nutritional yeast – This adds flavor to the tofu scramble.
- Turmeric – This gives the scramble its color.
- Salt – I used Himalayan pink salt to season the scramble. Use any salt you have on hand.
Vegan fried rice is so easy to make. Just follow these simple steps.
Step 1: Sauté the Veggies
Add the minced garlic and chopped green onions to a wok or large skillet along with a bit of oil.
Sauté them for about 3-5 minutes or until fragrant.
Now add the frozen peas and carrots to the wok.
Sauté them until fully heated and softened, about 10-15 minutes.
Step 2: Heat up the Rice
Add the cold rice to the wok.
Mix it in and heat over medium heat until it is hot. Break up any chunks you may find.
Step 3: While the rice heats up cook the tofu
Add the bite-sized tofu pieces, oil, and seasonings to a pan and mix everything together.
Cook over medium heat for 10-15 minutes, or until it is to your desired texture.
Step 4: Add in the sauce and tofu
In a small bowl, mix together the soy sauce, maple syrup, and sesame oil. Pour the mixture over the rice and stir it in.
Now turn off the heat and add in the warm tofu scramble.
Stir everything together and serve immediately topped with freshly chopped green onions.
The best part about this vegan fried rice recipe is how easy it is to customize!
Enjoy it as a main dish or a side dish.
Use any vegetables (fresh, frozen, or leftover) you’d like.
Try it with frozen bell peppers, corn, shelled edamame, or green beans.
Or use up those fresh veggies in your fridge before they go bad. It would be delicious with broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, brussel sprouts, or cabbage.
Replace the green onions with shallots, leeks, or diced white onion.
Sauté some mushrooms for a meaty texture or add pineapple chunks for sweetness.
Switch out the tofu scramble for Just Egg.
Or leave the tofu out and serve this veggie fried rice alongside my lemon pineapple tofu.
The options are endless!
Tips to make the perfect vegan fried rice
Use cold rice: Cold leftover rice is best since it firms up in the fridge and becomes less sticky. The firmer grains make it easier to break up any clumps. It also lessens the chance of the rice becoming too mushy.
Use plenty of oil: The oil keeps the ingredients from sticking.
If your ingredients are sticking to the pan push them away from the center. Add about 1-2 teaspoons of oil to the bottom of the pan, then use a flat spatula to spread the oil around the bottom of the pan under the rice. Repeat as necessary to keep the ingredients from sticking.
Adding in the sauce: The sauce should be mixed in once the rice is hot. This will keep it from becoming too sticky.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes! It’s a great replacement for the scramble.
To prepare the Just Egg, pour the desired amount of liquid into a separate pan. Use a spatula to move the Just Egg around the pan scrambling it while it cooks.
When the liquid is fully cooked and fluffy, use the spatula to break the scramble into bite-sized pieces. Then add it to the rice at the end as you would the tofu scramble.
Any long-grain white rice is ideal. I use and recommend jasmine rice for the best taste and texture. You can also use basmati rice, medium-grain rice, or brown rice. I don’t recommend short-grain sushi rice. It’s too sticky and will stay clumped together.
This recipe is best with cold rice, but fresh rice that has been chilled can also be used.
To chill freshly cooked rice, line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Then evenly spread the warm rice out on the parchment paper. Place the baking sheet in the fridge for 20-30 minutes or until the rice is cold. Remove the rice from the fridge just before adding to the wok.
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- 1 (14-ounce) block extra firm tofu, broken into bite-sized pieces
- 2 Tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 2 teaspoons coconut oil, or neutral vegetable oil
- ½ teaspoon Himalayan pink salt, or salt of choice
- ⅛ teaspoon turmeric, for color
- 4 cups cooked and chilled jasmine rice
- 2 cups frozen peas and carrots mix
- 1 bunch of green onions, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1-3 Tablespoon coconut oil, or neutral oil for sautéing
- 4 Tablespoons soy sauce, or tamari
- 1 and ½ Tablespoons maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon sesame oil
Prep the tofu
- Add the crumbled tofu pieces and remaining tofu ingredients to a medium pan. Gently mix everything together until the seasonings are fully incorporated. Set aside and proceed with making the fried rice.
(Doing this step first will help the recipe move along quickly. The tofu is cooked in step 5 below)
Tip: If you want to cook the tofu right away, you can do so. Fully cook it then set it aside and reheat in step 5 before adding to the rice.
- Sauce: In a small bowl mix together the sauce ingredients -soy sauce, maple syrup, and sesame oil. Set aside.
- Veggies: In a large wok (or non-stick skillet), add the oil, garlic, and green onions. Cook over medium-low heat for about 3-5 minutes, or until fragrant.
Tip: Save some of the chopped green onions for garnish.
- Now, add the frozen peas and carrots to the wok and turn the heat up to medium-high. Cook over medium-high heat for about 8-10 minutes to defrost, soften, and slightly brown the veggies. Stir frequently.
- Rice: Next, add the cold rice to the wok and mix. Break up any clumps you may find. Frequently mix the rice as it cooks to evenly heat. Add more oil to the pan if the ingredients are sticking.
Tip: To "fry" the rice, let it sit at the bottom of the pan between mixings to lightly crisp up.
- Tofu: While the rice is heating up, cook the tofu over medium heat for about 10-15 minutes or until it is firm and browned to your liking. Stir periodically while it cooks.
- Once the rice is hot, pour in as much of the sauce mixture as you'd like. Mix everything together until the sauce is evenly distributed.
- Now, turn off the heat and mix in the warm cooked tofu.
- Serve immediately topped with chopped green onions.
- To replace the tofu with Just Egg: Pour the desired amount of Just Egg into a separate pan. Use a spatula to move the Just Egg around the pan scrambling it while it cooks. When the liquid is fully cooked and fluffy, use the spatula to break the scramble into bite-sized pieces. Then add it to the fried rice at the end as you would the tofu scramble.
- Type of rice to use: Any long-grain white rice is ideal. I use and recommend jasmine rice for the best taste and texture. You can also use medium-grain rice or brown rice. I don’t recommend short-grain sushi rice. It’s too sticky and will stay clumpy.
- Cold rice: Cold leftover rice is best since it firms up in the fridge and becomes less sticky. The firmer grains make it easier to break up any clumps.
- To use freshly cooked rice: If you're in a pinch and need to use fresh rice, it's best to chill it in the refrigerator first.
To chill freshly cooked rice, line a baking sheet with parchment paper, then evenly spread the warm rice out across the parchment paper. Place the baking sheet in the fridge for 20-30 minutes or until the rice is cold. Remove it from the fridge just before adding to the wok.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 457Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 11gUnsaturated Fat: 9gSodium: 1450mgCarbohydrates: 57gFiber: 4gSugar: 5gProtein: 11g
**Nutritional info is provided as an estimate based on the ingredients I used and for convenience and as a courtesy only.**
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