It’s a fantastic idea to eat fried rice as it is. However, serving it with a savory side dish can make even a casual dinner unforgettable.
So, you’ve probably wondered what to serve with fried rice for one of these events.
Fried rice is a colorful and hearty Asian dish consisting of rice, peas, scrambled eggs, green onions, peppers, and carrots. It may or may not have additional protein.
It also helps if you have several seasonings, such as oyster sauce, sesame oil, and soy sauce. With these, the meal can turn out pretty much like one in an Asian restaurant.
Also, look over our shopping checklist for seasonings and spices that we love (and why) to keep handy for making sides for fried rice and other Chinese, Thai, and all kinds of Asian-inspired cooking.
To add more flavor to your meal, here are 18 dishes you can serve with fried rice, leaving you and your guests delighted.
This one is a given, right? Anyone who’s had a delivery menu slid under their door has seen this one.
In Chinese cuisine, egg drop soup is a staple. Note that fried rice is already flavored and hearty, and you only need to add a little of the egg drop soup.
This appetizer is excellent, has mild flavors, yet it’s not too filling. That’s what makes a fabulous starter dish.
2. Fried Egg
Wondering what to eat with fried rice?
Without a doubt, a fried egg is the most straightforward ingredient. If you’ve already loaded your fried rice with everything, a fried egg is excellent for topping up the dish.
What’s great about this choice is you don’t need much to enhance it.
All you need to do is fry the egg, leaving the yolk runny. This is a simple recipe for beginners to follow.
Hot and sour soup is a popular Asian soup with a perfect acidity balance obtained from vinegar.
You can make it as spicy as you want it—it’s made with red peppers. Carrot is another ingredient of hot and sour soup and tofu, which gives the soup a silky consistency.
These ingredients—vinegar, red peppers, carrots, and tofu, make a delicious and light soup, providing you with the perfect appetizer or fried rice side dish.
If you’re wondering what goes with fried rice, Chinese Broccoli (Gai Lan) is a vegetable with fat leaves and stems that are easy to incorporate into your meal.
It’s leafier than the popular cruciferous veggie. The dish has sweet and mildly bitter flavors, thanks to its super crunchy leaves and stems.
Preparation is quite simple, requiring you to steam the broccoli, after which you can serve with mushrooms.
Chinese cabbage suits fried rice due to the lighter contrast and the pop of color it adds to the dish. It’s just lovely!
These little plum lovelies didn’t come out looking great (visit the link to see) and are more meat…ovals…than balls. But the plum sauce came out a nice thick tangy and sweet sauce.
We used turkey to lighten things up a bit but you can use beef or pork.
Pro Tip: We’ve learned since then that putting your meat mixture in the freezer for about 20 minutes, forming into balls, and then freezing them again for about 15 minutes before popping them in a hot conventional oven (instead of the skillet) will help loose ground turkey or chicken keep their shape.
This tried and true recipe we actually paired with a simple fried rice with no egg and just veggies, but it was a delicious sidecar.
Chinese dumplings (Jiaozi) are another perfect complement to fried rice.
They are sweet, juicy, savory, and overall, quite delicious.
Whether your favorite is shrimp, pork, or beef, all will taste great and add flavors to your fried rice.
Xiao long bao is another Chinese dumpling that I love. Trust me; it’s yummy. Unlike the Jiaozi, it has an added spicy soup inside a wrapper.
Gyoza is yet another delicious dumpling that comes from Japan and features a half-moon shape. Preparation involves deep frying or boiling. The dumpling is filled with either vegetable or minced meat.
How you cook, it doesn’t matter. To get a super meal, accompany the dish with fried rice.
Though not Asian, brussels sprouts, when infused with Asian seasonings, taste perfect with a dish of fried rice.
If you are wondering which is the best Asian seasoning to use, sesame seed oil is so lovely.
The oil’s earthy and nutty flavor will leave your sprouts with a distinctive taste.
To add more sweetness to your sprouts, add some honey, then put them in an oven to roast.
The final dish is crispy, delicious sprouts filled with an Asian flair.
9. Egg Rolls
Anytime I visit a Chinese restaurant, the temptation of ordering egg rolls is hard to ignore. How addictive!
Commonly served as appetizers, these deep-fried rolls are also enjoyable when you eat them with fried rice. It’s a fabulous combination.
Fill the crunchy egg rolls with cabbage, ground meat, carrots, and add spicy fried rice.
The result is a spectacular meal.
If you’re curious about what to make with fried rice and need a delicious protein, this is it.
Your savory rice, especially if you aren’t adding chicken, beef or seafood, might need a dish with a smoky and sweet flavor to complement it, just like the one chicken teriyaki offers.
Note that chicken teriyaki is meaty; thus, you need no more protein in your meal. Instead, add veggies such as garlic, carrots, onions, Broccoli, and leeks.
This is one of the reasons why Andi loves Thai food so much, and also why she rarely makes it at home. It has a laundry list of ingredients that seem hard to get, like kaffir or makrut lime leaves (?) and fish sauce, but really you can find them online if not at your local grocery store.
I keep one of those tubes of lemongrass paste in my fridge so I rarely need to hunt down the stalks.
Coconut milk and red chili paste aren’t so mysterious, right? I’d double this recipe and savor every bite.
Just remember to save room for the fried rice!
This is a list of so many wonderful salsas, salads, and dishes made from mango that we couldn’t pick just one.
Mango is a natural coupler with Thai, especially, but that tongue-tickling tropical flavor can’t be beat.
Mango Sticky Rice, of course, with or without the custard, just belongs with fried rice.
Beautiful chunks of fresh pineapple and perfectly ripe avocado come together with green onion and just a few spices to add a thick side that goes so great with fried rice.
It’s not loose or soupy, it’s actually more of a chunky “guac” consistency, but leave the avocado in big chunks so you can fork it in with every bite of fried rice.
The video below will give you steps for this easy side.
14. Asian Slaw
This brightly colored and flavored carrot-and-red-cabbage slaw will add a delightful crunch to round out a hearty fried rice dinner.
As a tried-and-true recipe here at CookingChew, we love this by itself, with deconstructed egg rolls, and we make this even when we have ordered Chinese delivery because the freshness can’t be beat.
Use gorgeous red cabbage to get that eye-popping color.
We have step-by-step instructions and you can always make it ahead because the veggies are sturdy.
Ebi Tempura! Yes, this is a Japanese favorite that pairs really well with seafood fried rice.
Once you add the savory tempura sauce to this deep-fried, battered shrimp, you get a tasty dish. Even better when you eat it with fried rice.
Your sweet fried rice and savory shrimp will amaze.
They contrast each other quite well.
In this recipe, hearty asparagus gets a flavorful sauce coating to give it an Asian touch. That is because it’s not a staple dish in Asian cuisine.
Be careful not to add so much of the sauce because it’s extremely sweet and super thick.
A small amount of hoisin sauce will do, then roast it in your oven. If you’re wondering what goes good with fried rice, this is a classic veggie with an Asian twist.
You can also serve fresh-cut pineapple rings slathered with a brown sugar-butter mop and charred on the grill as sides for fried rice or as dessert.
These fruits offer a citrus-sweet flavor, which complements the main dish of nearly any kind of fried rice quite well.
This is one of our first recipes that we wanted to make sure worked really well for our readers, and it is still one of my favorites to make and eat year round—with pretty much any Asian dish (or grilled meat or picnic food).
The trick is to not turn the pineapple rings too soon, so the edges can get a nice dark brown.
What goes with pork fried rice that can create a great contrast of flavor?
Once you eat this filling chili potato curry with chickpeas, you’ll want to eat it next time, too.
First, you boil the potatoes, then fry them with onion, adding capsicum, tomato sauce, and chili powder.
If you don’t like food that is too hot-spicy, reduce the capsicum.
A few more vegetables like English peas, cubed carrots, or zucchini chunks will make the potato curry an even more delicious side dish for fried rice.
The bottom line
Fried rice is a fairly hearty dish on its own, and it’s good to consider what you’ve got going in there when you are planning side dishes.
As shown above, there is a wide array of recipes that you can choose from.
Which one pleases you most, and do you now have inspiration on what to serve with fried rice?
And of course leftovers are king. Check out our montage with tips for reheating rice:
- Egg Drop Soup
- Fried Egg
- Hot and Sour Soup
- Chinese Broccoli Stir Fry with Garlic Sauce
- Asian Turkey Meatballs
- Chinese Dumplings
- Sesame Roasted Brussels Sprouts
- Egg Rolls
- Garlic Teriyaki Chicken Thighs
- Thai Coconut Soup
- Pineapple Avocado Salsa
- Asian Slaw
- Shrimp Ebi Tempura
- Hoisin Roasted Asparagus
- Grilled Pineapple Rings
- Chili Potatoes Curry
- Plan your style of fried rice: Protein? Vegetarian?
- Pick one or two of our sides and add them to your meal.
- Share your favorites with us.