Fried rice is one of those comforting dishes that’s easy to make and to enjoy. There are so many types of fried rice to make and this version uses Thai basil for a distinctly fresh and crisp flavor. Unlike Italian basil Thai basil has a more herbal, anise-like flavor that’s unique and refreshing.
This dish uses tofu, but you can swap in any cooked protein of your choice, including eggs, chicken, beef, or seafood.
The sauce that flavors each bite of this rice is a mixture of fish sauce, oyster sauce, and soy sauce. If you happen to be missing fish sauce or oyster sauce you can add a bit more soy sauce. But, if you can use at least one of the seafood sauces to get that signature Thai flavor.
Likewise use Thai basil if you can get it since it’s got a different flavor to other varieties of basil.
This is a great way to use up leftover rice and it makes a wonderful meal all on its own. But, for a bit of extra flavor serve this fried rice with some cucumber and some lime wedges. These little add-ons give it more freshness and they make it look nice, too.
If you love Thai basil and the flavors of Thai cooking then this recipe is for you. It’s simple, healthy, and makes a nice change of pace from any other types of fried rice.
Thai Basil Fried Rice
15m prep time
21m cook time
For the sauce:
- 4 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 2 tablespoon fish sauce
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon mirin
For the rice:
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 7 oz tofu cubes or protein of your choice
- 1 onion, sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 Birdseye chiles (or to taste), minced
- 3 cups cooked jasmine rice
- 3/4 cup Thai basil leaves, chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
For the toppings:
- 1 English cucumber, cut into thin strips
- 1 lime cut into wedges
- Whisk together sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
- Heat oil in large skillet or work over medium-high heat. Pat tofu dry with paper towels. Add tofu to pan and fry until golden brown on each side, about 12 minutes.
- Use slotted spoon to remove tofu from pan. Wipe out pan. Add more oil if needed. Add onion, garlic, and chilis to pan and reduce heat to medium. Fry for 3-4 minutes.
- Add rice and sauce to pan, tossing to coat completely. Let set in pan until bottom later gets lightly crispy about 5 minutes. Add tofu back to pan along with basil. Toss to combine and remove from heat.
- Serve piping hot with cucumbers and a wedge of lime to squeeze on top.
Recipe adapted from Woon Heng.