Chicken Fried Rice

I like to cook a whole-grain like brown rice or quinoa at the start of the week. I may season some to serve as a side one night. Then I’ll save the rest to reheat as needed for grain bowls or a quick stir-fry. But, let’s get real here – there are lots of time when that level of meal prep just doesn’t happen!

My solution? Keeping a few ready-to-heat grain pouches in the pantry. 

They’re ready in two minutes, and there are lots of whole-grain options to choose from now (even Target’s store brand offers an assortment!). Basically, these pouches can save the day when throwing together a last-minute meal. BUT they also work perfectly when making fried rice. Using hot or freshly cooked rice creates a soggy and texture-less dish, so it’s ideal to use a previously cooked and chilled grain in fried rice recipes. So these unheated pouches can be opened and added directly to the hot skillet. 

It seems too easy to be whole-grain and healthy, right? Maybe so, but I know you’re going to love it! Let me know what you think by sharing your final product on social media! Be sure to tag me : Instagram @realfoodreallife_rd / Facebook @Real Food. Real Life. - Carolyn Williams, PHD, RD. Stay tuned for more recipes to come!

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Chicken Fried Rice

Makes 4 to 6 servings

Cook Time: 12 minutes 

I like to use Eat Smart’s Vegetable Stir-fry Bag that has snow peas, broccoli, carrots, and shredded cabbage, but you can use any assortment of cut fresh vegetables. When it comes to rice options, use ready-to-heat packages, previously cooked and cooled brown rice, or cauliflower “rice” to go lower-carb. 

If using fresh cauliflower crumbles, add to skillet at the same time the other vegetables are added in Step 3. For frozen rice cauliflower, thaw and press moisture out. Then, add according to Step 3 with cooked chicken. 


  • 2 teaspoon canola oil

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into ½ to 3/4-inch cubes

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil 

  • 2 cups fresh stir-fry vegetables (such as snap peas, carrots and broccoli)

  • 3 tablespoons less-sodium soy sauce

  • 2 teaspoons ginger paste or chopped fresh ginger

  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic 

  • 2 (8.8-oz) ready-to-heat brown rice (such as Uncle Ben’s) OR 4 cups cooked, cooled brown rice 

  • 2 green onions, chopped  4 teaspoons canola oil, separated


  1. Heat canola oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Cook chicken 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until cooked through. Remove from pan; keep warm. 

  2. Whisk eggs together in a small bowl. Lightly coat pan with cooking spray. Add eggs, cooking over medium heat, to scramble. Remove from pan; coarsely cut into smaller pieces. Set aside.  Wipe skillet clean.

  3. Heat sesame oil in skillet over medium heat. Add ginger, garlic, and vegetables. Cook 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Add rice, cooked chicken, soy sauce, scrambled egg, and green onion; cook 2 additional minutes or until warm throughout. 


  • Yields 4 servings (serving size: about 1 3/4 cups):

    • 465 Cal | 15g Fat, 2g Sat Fat | 35g Protein | 40g Carb, 3g Fiber, 2g Sugar (0g Added Sugar) | 550mg Sodium

  • Yields 6 servings (serving size: about 1 cup):

    • 310 Cal | 9g Fat, 1g Sat Fat | 23g Protein | 27g Carb, 2g Fiber, 1g Sugar (0g Added Sugar) | 367mg Sodium