A Single Ingredient Adds Big Flavor to White Rice

Our Garlic Fried Rice is more of a technique than a recipe—and it tastes so good, you’ll come back to it again and again. 

Published May 8, 2022.

When our editorial director Bryan Roof was learning how to make the sensational Filipino dish sisig in Oakland, California, he returned with a little something extra: the method for making garlic fried rice, which is often served with sisig. 

The specifics are below, but the gist of it is simple: Brown a bunch of chopped garlic in vegetable oil and stir in cooked jasmine rice and salt. That’s it—just sprinkle a thinly sliced scallion on top, and it is ready to serve. 

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There is one unusual technique here to ensure success. You rinse the cooked, cooled rice in a fine-mesh strainer under running water, breaking up clumps with your hands as you do so. Then you let the rice sit in the strainer to drain completely. This will make the rice easier to manage in the skillet and eliminate lumps. 

Garlic Fried Rice

Serves 4

One-and-a-half cups of raw jasmine rice cooked with 2¼ cups of water will yield 4½ cups of cooked rice. Make sure that the rice is cold before frying; otherwise, it can turn gummy. 

  • 4½ cups cooked jasmine rice
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 8 garlic cloves, chopped fine
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 scallion, sliced thin

  1. Transfer rice to fine-mesh strainer. Place rice under cold running water and break up clumps with your hands. Let drain for 5 minutes. 
  2. Combine oil and garlic in a 12-inch nonstick skillet. Cook over medium heat until garlic turns golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Add rice and salt and cook, stirring frequently, until garlic is evenly distributed throughout rice, about 2 minutes. Off heat, season with salt to taste. Transfer to dish, sprinkle with scallion, and serve. 

Click here to read Bryan’s On the Road story featuring sisig and garlic fried rice. 

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