Not sure what to do with leftover holiday ham? Then make my EASY Ham Fried Rice Recipe! Stir fried veggies, leftover rice and chopped up ham make this ham fried rice a hearty dinner. This recipe features my SECRET ingredient for homemade fried rice that tastes just as good as takeout!
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The BEST Ham Fried Rice
If you have ever read my blog posts before, you know that fried rice is one of my absolute favorites. It is a delicious, easy and well balanced meal that me and my family love! I make fried rice at least once a week with whatever vegetables or protein I have on hand! I’ve been testing lots of holiday recipes and I have lot’s of ham leftover so I thought why not make a ham fried rice! It’s the perfect recipe for repurposing holiday leftovers!
This Ham Fried Rice has all of the flavors of typical fried rice plus my secret ingredient I add to ALL of my fried rice recipes: BUTTER!
Why add butter to fried rice?
First don’t knock it till you tried it! Have you ever watched them cook fried rice at hibachi restaurants? They always use butter! Why? Butter adds so much flavor and also helps to caramelize and brown the veggies and protein! To me it adds more depth of flavor compared to a neutral cooking oil. Try it the next time you make fried rice you will not be disappointed!
Ingredients for Ham Fried Rice
- Butter: Just like I explained above this is the secret to truly delicious fried rice. I saw them use butter at hibachi restaurants so I tried it and it was a game changer! You can substitute it with any other cooking oil if you prefer, but I suggest you give it a try!
- Eggs: Whisk your eggs thoroughly so you get even and fluffy scrambled eggs. These are for added protein, but if you don’t like eggs or don’t want to add them you can just omit them.
- Veggies: I used carrots, onions, garlic, and peas. You can also add extra veggies like broccoli, bell peppers or corn! Use what you have on hand!
- Leftover Rice: Your leftover rice should be cold. This ensures that the rice does not lump together and become mushy.
- Ham: I used a thick-cut, lean ham for this recipe. Leftover holiday ham works great for this recipe!
- Low Sodium Soy Sauce: I always use low sodium soy sauce, however, regular soy sauce will do as well! If you are afraid of too much salt, just but back a little bit and add more to taste.
- Oyster Sauce: Oyster sauce adds an umami flavor that is really delicious. You can find oyster sauce in the international aisle at the grocery store!
- Sesame Oil: Sesame oil adds a nutty, smooth flavor that no other oil can offer. Keep in mind that a little bit goes a long way!
How to Make Ham Fried Rice
- Cook your eggs: In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of butter. Add in the eggs and scramble until cooked. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Sauté the veggies: Add the additional tablespoon of butter and sauté your carrots and onion until tender, about 3-4 minutes. Then, stir in the garlic and cook for an additional minute.
- Add the rice: Add in the cold rice and sauté for 3-4 minutes. The rice should brown up a bit. Then, stir in the peas and ham.
- Combine it all: Add the eggs back to the pan and stir in the soy sauce, oyster sauce, and sesame oil. Cook 1-2 minutes to heat through. Serve immediately and garnish with green onions and sesame seeds, if desired.
Tips for the Best Ham Fried Rice
- If you don’t have leftover, cold rice on hand, don’t fret. Make some rice and then on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, spread the hot rice in a thin layer. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze for 20-30 minutes and you will have cold rice in no time!
- For an extra healthy ham fried rice, add even more veggies! You can truly pack this meal with veggies if you wish by adding broccoli, bell peppers, corn, and green beans. You could even replace the rice with cauliflower for a low carb option.
- Spice it up by adding some sriracha or garlic chili sauce when serving!
Frequently Asked Questions
Why do I need to use cold rice?
If you use fresh, hot rice that you just made, the fried rice will become mushy. Trust me, I have tried this with every temperature of rice and cold, previously cooked rice makes for the best fried rice! Each grain of rice will stay separate and fry up just the way you want it to.
What can I use instead of oyster sauce?
Can I make fried rice in an air fryer?
More Easy Rice Recipes to Try
Ham Fried Rice
- Heat 1 tablespoon of butter in a large skillet.Add in the eggs and scramble until fully cooked. Remove them from the pan and set aside.
- Add the remaining tablespoon of butter into the pan. Add carrots and onion to the pan and cook until tender, 3-4 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook for an additional minute.
- Add in the cold rice and sauté for 3-4 minutes. The rice should brown up a bit.Stir in the peas and ham.
- Add the eggs back to the pan and stir in soy sauce, oyster sauce and sesame oil. Cook for 1-2 minutes to heat through.Serve immediately with green onions for garnish, if desired.