Kimchi Fried Rice Recipe - Pamela Salzman Skip to content

Kimchi Fried Rice Recipe

Oh my gosh, I am excited about this recipe!!  My whole family goes gaga for all fried rice dishes but this one is hands-down their favorite.  It is a total flavor party!!  In fact, I make it for my son one a week and reheat it for school lunch.  I’ve eaten kimchi fried rice with an egg or tofu for breakfast and it is an ideal way for me to start the day.  If you have never bought kimchi before, this is your invitation!

Why you’ll love this recipe: 

  • It’s fast! Stir-fries are always quick.
  • Super flavorful;
  • Very adaptable. Rice doesn’t have to make up the base of this. There are so many other options I share below. And you can add any veggies or proteins you like. 
  • Kimchi is a probiotic POWERHOUSE! I dare you to find any food with more natural probiotics.


Kimchi Fried Rice Ingredients

  • Olive oil: I like the flavor of olive oil here, but use avocado oil for a neutral flavor.  
  • Toasted sesame oil: make sure you buy toasted, dark sesame oil which is packed with flavor.
  • Scallions: these are milder than regular onions and I love using them in stir fries. If the the recipe doesn’t specify white or light green part only, it means you will be using the entire thing. 
  • Quick cooking vegetable: I used dinosaur kale, but you can use mushrooms, defrosted/frozen vegetables or any veggies that cooks quickly.
  • Rice: I like to use a white basmati rice, but you can use brown rice, another grain of choice or even a riced vegetable. 
  • Shoyu: is a Japanese-style soy sauce made from fermented soy beans and wheat. Look for gluten-free tamari if you are gluten-free or you can try coconut aminos if you are soy-free (it also contains less sodium than shoyu and tamari.) 
  • Kimchi: is a Korean fermented food typically made of cabbage, garlic, ginger, chili peppers, salt, and fish sauce and it is LOADED with probiotics. You can find it in the refrigerated section of the grocery store. 

How to Make Kimchi Fried Rice

  1. Heat olive oil and sesame oil in a large wok or skillet over medium-high heat. Add the scallions and kale and sauté until the kale is wilted. 
  2. Add the rice and sauté until warmed through. Douse with the shoyu and toss to combine. Turn off the heat and stir in the kimchi. You don’t want to cook the kimchi because you don’t want to kill the live probiotics.  Taste for seasoning and serve immediately with or without suggested accompaniments. 

Tips for Making Kimchi Fried Rice

  • Have all your ingredients chopped, measured, and ready to go. Stir-fries are fast. 
  • I prefer cooling and chilling the rice before using it in the stir-fry.  You can use precooked rice or even frozen cooked rice.
  • Add a protein to make it a meal. Here I used prebaked tofu, but a fried egg is great, as is cooked rotisserie chicken or shelled edamame or peas.

Substitutions for Kimchi Fried Rice

  • Rice: COOKED quinoa, millet, lentils, cauliflower rice or other riced vegetable. 
  • Shoyu: gluten-free tamari or coconut aminos. 
  • Kale: any leafy green or other quick-cooking vegetable like julienned carrots, mushrooms, cabbage, blanched broccoli, riced cauliflower, snow peas.

If you think kimchi is a food that you’re not going to like, I am encouraging you to get some and try this recipe.  The flavors are so balanced – sharp, tart, sour, maybe spicy (depending on the type you get.). I guarantee you’ll be hooked on kimchi and you’ll start adding it to grain bowls, burritos and eggs.  


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Kimchi Fried Rice
Serves: 4
  • 2 Tablespoons unrefined olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil or ghee
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • Pick 1 cup of a quick-cooking vegetable like chopped, stemmed kale or sliced mushrooms, any kind
  • 4 cups cooked rice or quinoa (see notes)
  • 2 Tablespoons shoyu (soy sauce), tamari or coconut aminos (this is adding salt; if you don’t
  • want to use any of these in the dish, add salt to taste.)
  • 1 cup chopped kimchi, any variety
  • Serving suggestions: crispy tofu, fried or poached egg or a cooked scrambled egg, chopped; sesame seeds; chopped fresh cilantro; your favorite hot sauce
  1. Heat the olive oil and sesame oil in a large wok or skillet over medium-high heat. Add the scallions and kale and sauté until the kale is wilted.
  2. Add the rice and sauté until warmed through. Douse with the shoyu and toss to combine. Turn off the heat and stir in the kimchi. Taste for seasoning and serve immediately with or without suggested accompaniments.
Millet, lentils, or fresh or frozen cauliflower rice can be subbed for the rice. You can also use part grain/part chickpeas.
Other quick-cooking vegetables could be diced zucchini, shredded carrots, blanched or frozen/defrosted small cauliflower florets, or peas.
Fried egg:
Heat a small skillet over medium heat. Add butter, ghee or oil of choice and heat through. Crack the egg into the pan. Cover with a tight lid and cook for 3 minutes (sunny-side up), or until white is set, but the yolk is still soft. Remove from pan.
Or, flip the egg over and cook for 30-60 seconds for over-medium eggs, or 2-3 minutes for over-hard eggs and the yolk looks done. Remove and serve immediately. Season with salt and pepper, if desired.


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  1. Hi! Where did you buy the jar of mild kimchi?
    Thanks 🙂

    • It is the Melissa’s brand which I had in my produce delivery. My Whole Foods sells several brands of kimchi, such as Mother In-Law’s, and I have seen mild versions there.

  2. this looks so delicious. I would like to know what pan you are using to put this all together. thank you!

    • I used the 13.5 inch double handle cast-iron fry pan by staub. It’s my favorite pan! I use it all the time. Here’s a link to take a peek:
      Hope you give this recipe a try. It’s so good!

      • thank you so much for replying to my message and thank you for continuing to create so many good recipes!

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I come from a large Italian-American family with 28 first cousins (on one side of the family!) where sit-down holiday dinners for 85 people are the norm (how, you might ask – organization! But more on that later …).

Some of my fondest memories are of simple family gatherings, both large and small, with long tables of bowls and platters piled high, the laughter of my cousins echoing and the comfort of tradition warming my soul.

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