‘Pineapple Fried Rice ? Mama are you the kind of person who likes pineapple on pizza ?’ . That was my daughter’s first reaction when I made this dish for the first time. While I often make different kinds of fried rice this was the first time I tried adding a tropical twist to it. I must admit I myself was a bit skeptical about it in the beginning but was pleasantly surprised with the result.Jump to Recipe
Usually, fried rice is served as a side dish but this colorful Pineapple fried Rice full of veggies, chicken and pineapple is a complete one pot meal in itself. If you have the rice ready it comes together in a snap .
Spice it Up
My kids prefer the simple flavors of garlic, soy sauce, salt and pepper along with veggies, pineapple and chicken but you can add your favorite sauce for a kick if you wish. Also, feel free to add scrambled egg or any other stir fry veggies that you have on hand. This time I simply added frozen peas, carrots, red bell pepper and green onions but I often add chopped onions, frozen broccoli florets and sliced mushrooms to it.
Getting the perfect rice texture
We normally use basmati rice in our house but for this particular recipe I prefer using Jasmine rice to get the authentic Chinese restaurant like texture. It is usually recommended to use day old refrigerated rice for fried rice as it ensures that the rice does not get mushy and each grain remains separate after frying. However, I often make a fresh pot of Jasmine rice in the morning and let it cool completely before using it in the afternoon for lunch. If you are in a rush you can spread the rice on a tray for it to cool down faster.
To rinse or not to rinse, that is the question . I grew up seeing that rice always needs to be rinsed several times and soaked before cooking. It wasn’t until recently that I found out that using the same technique for rice such as Jasmine or Long Grain which is commonly available here in the US leads to extremely mushy rice and also we end up rinsing out nutrients. I normally use Mahatma Jasmine Rice and the website states that ” Most white rice produced in the US is thoroughly washed then fortified with vitamins and other nutrients, which appear as a dusty layer on the individual grains. If you want to preserve those nutrients, do not rinse.” So, while I still rinse and soak basmati and other varieties of Indian rice, I don’t do the same for Jasmine rice any more, especially when I am making fried rice.
Easy Pineapple Fried Rice with Chicken
Quick and easy Pineapple Fried Rice with Chicken recipe
For Boiling Rice
- 2.5 Cups Jasmine Rice
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 tbsp Cooking Oil
For Chicken Marination
- 1 lb Boneless Chicken Small Cubes
- 1 tsp Garlic Paste
- 1 tsp Ginger Paste
- 1 tbsp All Purpose Soy Sauce
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1/2 tsp Pepper
Other ingredients for Stir Frying
- 1 Cup Frozen Peas and Carrots
- 1/2 Red Bell Pepper Chopped
- 1 Bunch Green Onions Chopped
- 1 Cup Canned Pineapple Tidbits
- 1 Tbsp Crushed Garlic
- 1.5 Tbsp All Purpose Soy Sauce
- 1.5 Tbsp Dark Soy Sauce
- Salt According to taste
- Pepper According to taste
- 4 Tbsp Cooking Oil Divided
Prepare Boiled Rice
Boil Jasmine Rice according to package instructions. Add salt and oil while boiling.
When rice is done, fluff gently with fork. Cool completely. If you want to cool rice quickly you can spread it in a tray. Leftover rice that has been refrigerated works well too but it is best to bring it to room temperature before using.
Marinate and cook Chicken
Marinate boneless chicken for about 15 minutes with ginger and garlic paste, soy sauce , salt and pepper.
Heat about 2 tbsp oil in a large wok or non stick frying pan. Stir fry the marinated chicken on high heat until cooked thoroughly. Take out from the pan and keep aside.
Prepare Fried Rice
In the same pan which was used to cook chicken add about 3 tbsp oil and heat. Add the frozen vegetables followed by chopped bell pepper, white part of green onion, crushed garlic and pineapple. Stir fry briefly on high heat. The vegetables should remain crunchy.
Add soy sauce, salt and pepper.
Add cooked chicken.
Add cooled rice, breaking large lumps with your hand. Mix everything well on medium-high heat and saute for a few more minutes until rice is steaming hot and no white rice can be seen. Adjust seasoning.
Add the green part of onion. Switch off flame and cover pan for a few minutes before serving. Enjoy !
- You can add veggies like frozen broccoli florets, sliced mushrooms, boiled corn.
- Scrambled egg can also be a good addition to fried rice.
- For flavor variation you can add Oyster sauce, Fish sauce, Chili Garlic sauce or Sriracha.
- If you don’t have Dark Soy Sauce you can substitute it with equal amount of Regular All Purpose Soy sauce.
- Do not over cook the veggies. They should remain a bit crunchy.
- If you are using fresh peas and carrots instead of frozen, par boil them before adding.