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Simple Fried Rice: the "perfect leftovers dish" from America's Test Kitchen hosts Kevin and Jeffrey Pang

Jeffrey and Kevin Pang, who have their own show at America's Test Kitchen, called "Hunger Pangs," offer "Sunday Morning" viewers their take on Simple Fried Rice, and explain why it works: 

America's Test Kitchen

"The perfect leftovers dish of stir-fried rice made with yesterday's rice, simple seasonings, and modest mix-ins makes for an incredibly satisfying meal. Day-old rice works best; the stiff, dry clumps relax during cooking into tender-firm, distinct grains and can be pushed around without turning mushy. 

"This fried rice needs no ginger or garlic, spices, or sauce. It's really all about the rice, so don't overdo it with mix-ins. Cooking sliced scallion whites in oil infuses the rice with subtle oniony savoriness. To make fluffy, tender pockets of scrambled eggs, we pour beaten eggs into smoking-hot oil; the eggs puff as their water rapidly turns to steam. 

"If you don't have day-old rice, cook your rice 2 hours ahead, spread it on a rimmed baking sheet, and let it cool completely before chilling it for 30 minutes. All rice should be roughly room temperature when you stir-fry. You will need a 14-inch flat-bottomed wok or a 12-inch nonstick skillet for this recipe. If using a wok, make sure that it is well seasoned so that the rice does not stick."

For more recipes check out the "Sunday Morning" 2023 "Food Issue" recipe index!

Simple Fried Rice

Serves: 4
Total Time: 30 minutes


3 large eggs
1½ teaspoons kosher salt, divided
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
1 carrot, peeled and cut into ¼-inch pieces
4 ounces Spam or ham steak, cut into ½-inch pieces (¾ cup)
4 scallions, white and green parts separated and sliced
4 cups cooked jasmine rice or long-grain white rice, room temperature
¼ teaspoon pepper
½ cup frozen peas

Simple Hibachi-Style Fried Rice.  Joe Keller/America's Test Kitchen


  1. Beat eggs and ¼ teaspoon salt in bowl until well combined. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in 14-inch flat-bottomed wok or 12-inch carbon-steel or cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Add eggs and cook, stirring frequently, until very little liquid egg remains, 30 to 60 seconds. Transfer to large plate.
  2. Add 1 teaspoon oil to now-empty pan and reduce heat to medium. Add carrot and ¼ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring frequently, until just beginning to brown, 2 to 4 minutes. Add Spam and cook, stirring frequently, until Spam is warmed through, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to plate with eggs.
  3. Add scallion whites and remaining 1 tablespoon oil to now-empty pan. Cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add rice and stir until combined. (It's OK if some clumps of rice remain.) Spread into even layer. Sprinkle pepper and remaining 1 teaspoon salt evenly over rice. Continue to cook, stirring frequently and pressing on rice with spatula to break up clumps, until grains are separate and heated through, 2 to 5 minutes. Add peas, egg mixture, and scallion greens and cook, stirring frequently and using edge of spatula to break eggs into small pieces, until peas are warmed through, about 2 minutes. Serve.

For more info: 

"Hunger Pangs" hosts Jeffrey and Kevin Pang on family and food 04:42
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