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The Secret to Ham Fried Rice [+ Video]

15 Reviews

With this Ham Fried Rice you don’t have to even leave your kitchen to have restaurant worthy Chinese food. This is the secret to ham fried rice faux takeout style.

Is Fried Rice Gluten Free?

If the rice is fried with soy sauce, it is most likely made with gluten-containing soy sauce. It can also be made with other sauces that may contain gluten.

If you are making fried rice at home, gluten free soy sauce is available in most stores.

Frying rice with just oil and salt and the other fresh ingredients is gluten free.

Ham Fried Rice in a white dish on a wooden table.

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My mom is probably a lot like your mom, she sacrifices the heck out of everything to make sure that we all have what we need and taking the time to teach us everything she knows so that one day we could walk on our own as kind, contributing citizens. Most of all she just loves us dearly and what more could we want, well other than her cheesy ham and potato bacon bake or busy day casserole?

Ham Fried Rice on a white serving platter.

There’s only two things Mom ever wanted other than the gift of us kids not fighting for one whole day (or nothing at all, as she often said for holidays), and that was hot french fries or a meal at The Great Wall, her favorite restaurant.  I may not know how to recreate her favorite Won Ton soup, but I can help out with the secret to ham fried rice.

Ham Fried Rice in a white dish on a wooden table.

Actually there’s a story about Safeway too, but I’ll leave that for the upcoming Sesame Chicken post. And do stay tuned because I believe it turned out pretty fantastic.

Ham, peas and carrots in a pan on a wooden table.

The Secret to Ham Fried Rice

The secret to ham fried rice is actually to use 1 to 2 day old rice. Trust me, it’s the best way to ensure that your rice absorbs all of that flavor and fries up nicely in the pan.

Start with the rice a day or two ahead (which is why I love that I can use it in one meal, make extra and have my next meal started already).

What Rice is Best to Use for Fried Rice?

Medium to Long grain white rice works best with fried rice.

Short grain rice is stickier and best to use with sushi.

What Vegetables go in Ham Fried Rice?

The most commonly used vegetables in ham fried rice or fried rice is carrots and peas, with some green onions to garnish.

You can’t go wrong adding in some sautéed onions for additional  flavor.

Ham Fried Rice in a pan on a wooden table.

Next, you’ll want to whisk up a little sweetened soy sauce mixture and then once you’ve “fried” your rice in a little oil just add the sauce, stir and the remaining ingredients. Last, sprinkle a little green onion to brighten the whole dish and voila!

Can Fried Rice be Frozen?

Now how much do you love that you can make perfect rice by using leftovers?! Get on this recipe my friends. You’ll love it!  Best part is fried rice can be frozen, make sure you use freezer bags to press out all the air.

Ham Fried Rice on a white serving platter.

More HAM RECIPES You Will Love:

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Ham Fried Rice on a white serving platter.

The Secret to Ham Fried Rice

4.54 from 15 votes
Prep Time: 1 day
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 day 10 minutes
Servings: 6 -8
You don't have to even leave your kitchen to have restaurant worthy Chinese food. This is the secret to ham fried rice faux takeout style.


  • 1 1/2 cups peas
  • 1 1/2 cups carrots cubed
  • 2 cups ham chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 cups cooked rice
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper
  • 2 green onions chopped for garnish


  • Up to 2 days prior cook your white rice, we prefer Calrose
  • Steam the carrots and peas and set aside.
  • In a small fry pan add a little oil and heat to medium heat.
  • In a small bowl, lightly whisk together the eggs and add to the pan, lifting and tilting the egg and pan until all of the liquid is touching the pan and cooking and none is sitting on top of the egg.
  • Carefully flip and cook until set.
  • Remove the egg and chop.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, sugar, ginger and crushed red pepper.
  • Set aside.
  • In a large saute pan, over medium heat add the rice and oil, cooking until hot and the rice is beginning to pop.
  • Add the sauce mixture, stirring to combine.
  • Add the eggs, ham, carrots and peas and stir until heated through.
  • Top with green onion and serve immediately.


Make sure you make your rice at least one day ahead, cool, place in a bag or tupperware in the fridge to store.
Nutrition Facts
The Secret to Ham Fried Rice
Amount Per Serving (1 g)
Calories 373 Calories from Fat 126
% Daily Value*
Fat 14g22%
Saturated Fat 4g25%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 7g
Cholesterol 83mg28%
Sodium 1321mg57%
Potassium 423mg12%
Carbohydrates 41g14%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 6g7%
Protein 18g36%
Vitamin A 5747IU115%
Vitamin C 17mg21%
Calcium 49mg5%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

photo collage - The Secret to Ham Fried Rice

Looking for more faux takeout recipes? Read on before you grab the secret to ham fried rice recipe.

The Secret to Ham Fried Rice


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About the authors

carrian feik cheney oh sweet basil

Cade and Carrian have three children and love to spend time together whether it’s vacationing or snuggled up on the couch for a good movie.

And this family especially loves to eat.

They love everything from the keep you fit and healthy to the get out your sweat pants indulgent and everything in between.

But most of all, they love the memories made, shared and treasured and it’s all thanks to a meal shared together with loved ones.

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Recipe Rating


  • Made this last night and it was AMAZING! Thanks for sharing such a great recipe!

    • Reply
    • Isn’t it so dang good?? It is perfect for leftover Easter ham!

      • Reply
  • Sounds great. Do you always add ham even if you will want it for chicken teriyaki for example?

    • Reply
    • I would skip the ham and add the teriyaki chicken. Though having ham in the rice with teriyaki chicken is not a bad idea!

      • Reply
  • Feel good casseroles!

    • Reply
    • Amen sista!

      • Reply
  • I am thinking about making this today even though it is Christmas day we are staying home for dinner so it will be for the 2 of us. It sounds very delicious as we both love fried rice. I will update you when I get done with it.

    • Reply
    • Yay! How did it go? It makes great leftovers too!

      • Reply
  • Instead of using soy sauce, I use ketchup to season my fried rice. It’s so good!

    • Reply
  • Your recipes look great! I want to make the Teriyaki chicken casserole … and would like to know how to make the fried rice you mention “in the link above”…. Is that the Ham fried rice with all the ingredients? Sorry to be confused… I’ll really appreciate your help. Thanks! Have a happy day!

    • Reply
    • Yes, this is the ham fried rice for the teriyaki chicken casserole, so first you’ll make this and then proceed with the casserole

      • Reply
  • I was wondering what kind of ginger you used in the recipe. Was it the grated ginger root or ground ginger? Thank you for your time, have a Happy New Year and I hope to hear from you soon.

    • Reply
    • Hi Michelle, just ground ginger. I’ll edit the recipe now. Thanks for the heads up!

      • Reply
  • Wow! it is colurful! and I love it!

    • Reply
  • Here’s just a little tid bit of info for you and your followers. Yes, always best to use at least day old cooked rice, but here’s some really good news. Did you know that once you cook rice and chill it it loses 1/2 it’s calories? It’s a fact from the break down it goes through! Awesome! So there’s a bonus for all the people who are watching what they eat! Thought you would like this info.

    • Reply
    • Thank you Diana!

      • Reply
      • I think the rice has to be cooked with a little coconut oil and be refrigerated overnight for it to have 1/2 the calories. Google it.

  • Is there any way to substitute the egg for people allergic to eggs? Thanks

    • Reply
    • Hi Grace,

      The rice is still delicious without the egg, so I would just skip it.

      • Reply
      • Have you tried duck eggs? Many people that are allergic to chicken eggs can tolerate duck eggs quite nicely. Go slow & check with your doctor. Good luck

  • I am wondering if I could make a big batch of this a freeze it?

    • Reply
    • Hi Val, I’ve never frozen eggs, but the rest certainly could be and then throw in fresh egg when you reheat.

      • Reply
      • You can freeze cooked egg. I make scrambled egg, bacon, sausage burritos ahead of time and freeze them so my family can pull one out and microwave it for a quick, hot breakfast! 🙂

      • Jen, no. way. That is so smart!! Totally going to try it!

  • Is there a specific oil to use for this? I’m assuming peanut, but I’d prefer olive if it won’t drastically change the outcome.

    • Reply
    • Hi Emily,
      Canola or peanut work best as olive oil gives it a totally different flavor.

      • Reply
    • Adding sesame oil gives it that great smoky taste you find in good Chinese restaurants.

      • Reply
  • I’m making this tonight and can’t wait!! Quick question though – do you use fresh ginger or ground? Thanks!!

    • Reply
    • Oh! Ground ginger!

      • Reply
  • Can you please tell me if you can substitute orzo pasta for the rice. I have two household members that hate rice. Why? I have no idea. I would like to make this and other recipes calling for rice. Please help me!!!

    • Reply
    • Ya know, I haven’t tried it with orzo so you could attempt it but I would need to test it myself before I’d feel comfortable recommending it.

      • Reply
  • I didn’t have any ham, but I fried up some chopped bacon instead. This is a wonderful recipe! So good! Thanks for sharing! Even my 3 year old ate it, veggies and all 🙂

    Katie @ Being Dawson’s Mom

    • Reply
    • Don’t you love when the little ones eat dinner? I feel like it is such a win!!

      • Reply
  • Thanks for the recipe.
    Maybe you are not really a rat…what I mean is the Chinese New Year is not the same. My husband & I are both born in the same year but my birthday is the beginning of February & his is later in the year so we are actually 2 different signs. Birthdays that fall in Jan or Feb are not always the same as the rest of that year. 😉 The date is different each year as well.
    Check out this site – you can enter your birthdate & it will tell you based on the year cycle. 🙂

    • Reply
  • While fried rice is technically (I think) Chinese, my Japanese mother-in-law taught me the other secret ingredient to perfect fried rice. Yes, day-old cold rice is definitely a must, but the other thing is to add a pinch of Hon Dashi. It’s granulated fish stock. Seriously. I honestly didn’t believe her until I finally tried it. It’s the missing element that I could never figure out!

    • Reply
    • No way!! I can’t wait to try it, if I can track it down of course. Thank you so much!!

      • Reply
      • LOL You’re welcome. It’s possible you’ll find it in the Asian section of a large supermarket, but your best bet is an Asian store. We are in the Seattle area and have a wonderful small, local chain called Uwajimaya. If you don’t have a store like this around you, you can find it on Amazon.

      • Awesome! Thanks!

  • This looks so yummy! When I’m sick I always crave fried rice. It’s weird but soo good!

    • Reply
  • I love this! I grew up eating fried rice so we always used 1-2 day old rice. . also love that your mom’s fave restaurant was a Chinese restaurant! 🙂 I’m also a rat. . but some people think the rats are lucky! 🙂

    • Reply
    • Really?! Myabe the rat isn’t so bad then!

      • Reply
  • Perfect comfort food! I could dig into a big bowl of this any day!

    • Reply
  • Ham Fried Rice? Genius! Few days old rice is always great for fried rice, totally craving it right now!

    • Reply
    • I just love fried rice. It smells as good as it tastes!

      • Reply
  • I always fry my left over rice the next day, but never have tried it with the sweetened soy sauce which I absolutely will try the next time I make it!

    • Reply
    • You will loooove it!!

      • Reply
  • Mmmm, this looks and sounds oh so tasty! Can’t wait to try it out 🙂

    • Reply
  • This is one of my favorite “cheat” go to meals for the family. I love it because it has vegetables, protein and carbs all in one dish. And I love that it (usually) only dirties one pan. And the rice cooker. Your recipe turned out beautiful!

    • Reply
    • Thanks Traci. And I’m the same, I’m all about using less dishes when possible

      • Reply
  • Such a brilliant tip to use leftover rice! Love that! Fried rice is a total weekend staple in my household so I am excited to make it myself!

    • Reply
    • It seriously is so much better with old rice, which kinda soungds gross to say it like that. haha

      • Reply

Cozy Christmas Movie & Snack Nights 🎥🎄