Almost every Asian country has its own way of making fried rice. But, Thai fried rice tends to set it apart from all of them. In this article, we wish to address why this dish is so unique in flavor and content.

Thai fried rice, popularly known as Kho Pad in Thailand, is a simple, yet delicious rice dish. It is a complete meal. And it has variations depending on the source of protein used and the cooking method. However, a set of common ingredients show up in almost every variation that includes:

  • Rice
  • Proteins
  • Sauces
  • Vegetables
  • Garlic
  • White pepper

Let’s see why this Thai rice dish is so flavorful and what important things we must learn if we make it at home.

What Is In This Fried Rice?

The unique ingredients create the magic of this dish. There’s nothing fancy. But, the very few elements used here give an incredible taste to this dish. The ingredients, especially the vegetables and sources of proteins in this dish may vary depending on the cook.

Thai Fried Rice-SpiceRally

Rice– Jasmine rice is the traditional kind, in addition to basmati rice and long-grain rice varieties.

Proteins– Eggs, chicken, pork, shrimp/prawns, mixed seafood, crab meat, salted fish, etc.

Sauces– This dish mainly requires fish sauce, apart from light soy sauce, Thai dark soy sauce, and oyster sauce.

Vegetables- Onions and Chinese broccoli (gai lan) are the main vegetables in this dish other than cabbage, tomatoes, spring onions/ scallions, and bell peppers.

Spices and herbs– garlic, ground white pepper, Thai red chiles, Thai sweet basil, and cilantro.

Do you love discovering the common herbs used in Thai cuisine? We are ready to educate you! Click on this link and read the post we have shared here!

Other Ingredients Used In This Fried Rice

In addition to the main ingredients in Thai fried discussed above, it may also have the following ingredients:

  • Oil- usually uses sesame oil, vegetable oil, or a type of neutral oil
  • Salt
  • Sugar
  • Lime wedges (when serving)
  • Cornstarch- occasionally used to velvet meat like pork

How To Make Rice Dish At Home?

Making this dish at home is easier than you ever expected! Here we bring you a classic recipe to make Thai chicken fried rice (Khao Pad Kai). We have added our own bling to this recipe to add more depth and flavor. So, let’s get started!

Thai Fried Rice Recipe!

5 from 1 vote
Recipe by SpiceRally


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  • Spices & Herbs
  • 6 cloves 6 Garlic (roughly chopped)

  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 White pepper (ground)

  • 2 2 Fresh Thai spur chiles (red chiles, cut into small rings)

  • 1/2 cup 1/2 Fresh Thai sweet basil leaves

  • Other ingredients
  • 4 cups 4 Jasmine rice (cooked- see preparation note for cooking instructions)

  • 10 oz 10 Chicken thigh filet (thinly sliced)

  • 1 1/2 cups 1 1/2 Cabbage (sliced)

  • 2 2 Onions (sliced)

  • 4 tbsp 4 Vegetable oil (plus one tablespoon extra)

  • 4 4 Eggs

  • 1 tbsp 1 Light soy sauce (plus one teaspoon)

  • 1 tbsp 1 Thai dark soy sauce

  • 1 1/2 tbsp 1 1/2 Fish sauce

  • 2 tsp 2 Oyster sauce

  • 1 tsp 1 Sugar

  • To serve
  • Chopped cilantro

  • Lime wedges

  • Cucumber slices



  • Preparation
  • To cook the rice- It would be best to cook the rice one day before making the fried rice. So, to cook the rice:
  • You must keep the water a little lower than the amount you usually use to cook the rice.
  • Sprinkle a dash of salt, a pinch of sugar, and a few drops of oil, stir well, and then cook your rice the ordinary way.
  • As soon as the rice is cooked, take the content out of the cooker, spread it on a separate plate, and let it cool down.
  • Once the rice is cooled down, put it in the refrigerator and leave it there until you make your fried rice the next day.
  • Take out the rice 10 minutes before you start making the fried rice.

  • Getting prepared
  • To begin with, take your sliced chicken and season it with one teaspoon of light soy sauce. Leave it aside and let it marinate for about 3-10 minutes.
  • At the same time, crack the eggs into a bowl and lightly whisk them. Keep them aside until you need them to make the rice.
  • Then, take another small bowl, and mix in the remaining light soy sauce, Thai dark soy sauce, oyster sauce, fish sauce, and sugar together. Mix well and leave it aside.

  • Let’s make the Fried Rice
  • Heat the wok or pan over high heat. Add 4 tablespoons of oil to the hot wok or pan.
  • Once the oil is heated, add the sliced onions and let them stir-fry for a minute.
  • Now, add the garlic, saute for a minute, and follow up with the marinated chicken slices.
  • Let the chicken cook for about 3-4 minutes.
  • When the chicken is almost cooked, add the cabbage. Let the cabbage pieces stir-fry for another 2-3 minutes or until the chicken is cooked.
  • Then, move everything to the side of the wok or pan and add one tablespoon of vegetable oil to the space.
  • Let the oil heat and add the beaten egg mixture. Let the eggs cook in oil for a few seconds. Then, flip and scramble eggs with your spatula, mixing them with the vegetables and chicken.
  • Next, add the rice and the sauce mixture you prepared earlier. Combine everything very well until all the rice grains are well-coated.
  • Lastly, add the ground white pepper, give a final good mix, and switch off the flame.
  • Do your taste check and adjust the seasonings if needed.
  • Mix in the fresh Thai sweet basil leaves and let the leaves wilt with the heat of the rice.
  • Separate portions into serving bowls, top with chopped cilantro, and cut Thai chiles.
  • Serve with sliced cucumber and lime wedges!

Tasty Tips and Suggestions by SpiceRally

  • If you do not like using chicken, you can use any type of meat like pork, beef, mutton, lamb or fish, shrimp/prawns, crab meat, etc., depending on what you like.
  • Skip the chiles if you do not like the extra punch of heat it gives.
  • We have used cabbage since it is an easy vegetable to find from anywhere. But, if you can find Chinese broccoli, use it instead of cabbage to get a more authentic taste to your Thai fried rice.
  • If you prefer a vegetarian version of this rice dish, skip eggs and chicken.
  • You can use the same recipe to make vegan Thai Fried Rice, but without eggs, chicken, and fish sauce. Add some marinated tofu if needed instead of chicken.
  • If you cannot find jasmine rice, proceed with basmati rice or any other type of long-grain rice that does not get mushy when cooked.
  • Adding Thai sweet basil is not compulsory. Skip this ingredient if you can’t find it.

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What Are The Different Variations Of this dish?

This fried rice can be made of any protein and vegetable. But still, there are a few popular variations of this dish served across Thailand, such as Thai Chicken Fried Rice (Khao Pad Kai), Thai Pork Fried Rice (Khao Pad Mu), Thai Shrimp/ Prawn Fried Rice (Khao Pad Kung), Thai Seafood Fried Rice (Khao Pad Thale), Thai Crab Meat Fried Rice (Khao Pad Pu), Thai Salted Fish Fried Rice (Khao Pad  Pla Krapong), Thai Vegetarian Fried Rice (Khao Pad Che) and Thai Egg Fried Rice (Khao Pad Kai).

What Vegetables Go Well With this dish?

This rice dish is not so heavy on vegetables. Therefore, vegetables like Chinese broccoli, cabbage, spring onions, scallions, onions, and tomatoes go well with the flavor and texture of this dish.

What Is The Difference Between Classic Thai Fried Rice and Thai Fried Rice Variations Made With Thai Curry Pastes?

The main difference between these variations is that they are made by infusing various authentic Thai curry pastes. And these curry paste include Thai red curry paste, tom yum paste, Thai green curry paste, etc.

These fried rice recipes typically hold more complexity with a more depth of flavor than regular Thai rice recipes would do. They offer a robust “curry” note, and sometimes, coconut milk or cream is used when making the rice.

Is this dish Vegan-friendly?

This fried rice is a highly adaptable dish. Thus, you can make vegan fried rice by skipping eggs, animal proteins, fish sauce, and oyster sauce. And instead of animal proteins, you can use tofu to add depth and amp up the taste of your rice dish.

Does this Fried Rice Contain Gluten?

This dish does not contain direct gluten-related ingredients. But, the flavoring components added to this dish may contain traces of gluten such as soy sauce and oyster sauce

Make The Perfect Family Meal- Make This Fried Rice For Lunch or Dinner!

Loaded with authentic and exotic Thai flavors, this dish is one of the most comforting foods that you can have. The best thing about this dish is that it has many variations and is highly versatile to make it suit your palate. With or without meat or seafood, this fried rice will satisfy everyone’s rice craving without a doubt! 

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