This Garlic Salmon Fried Rice is easy to make, great for meal prep, and incredibly tasty! It’s deliciouslygarlicky, loaded with protein thanks to salmon and eggs, and tossed in a mouthwatering and fragrant sesame chili soy sauce!
2 TSP Chili Oil (optional) – (omit if making this mild)
For the Garlic Salmon Fried Rice:
2 TBLS Peanut Oil (or any other cooking oil with a high burning point such as avocado oil)
½ TBLS Sesame Oil
1.5 TSP Chili Oil (optional) – (omit if making this mild)
½ Yellow Onion – minced
3 Spring Onions – chopped, whites and greens separated
1 medium-sized Carrot – minced (brunoise cut)
1 Celery rib – minced (brunoise cut)
12 Garlic cloves – minced
1.5-inch knob of Ginger – minced
4 – 16 Red Chilies, to taste (deseeded if desired for less heat, or omitted entirely to make this mild) – chopped
2 large Eggs – beaten and seasoned with kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste
1.5 TSP freshly cracked Black Pepper, to taste
1 TSP Kosher Salt, to taste
1/2 TSP ground White Pepper, to taste (use more if you’d like an extra kick of heat!)
1.5 – 2 TSP Crushed Red Pepper Chili Flakes (optional), to taste
2 TSP White Sugar, more or less to taste
5 cups cooked Rice, chilled – (I like to use Japanese short-grain white rice, but any type of cooked white or brown rice will work.)
Prepare the fresh ingredients: Chop the onion, garlic, ginger, red chilies, spring onion (be sure to separate the white and green parts), carrot, and celery rib as indicated in the “Ingredients” section. Set aside. Crack the eggs in a bowl and season with kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste. Beat with a fork until smooth, then set aside.
Make the Sauce: Combine the low sodium light soy sauce, Shao Xing rice wine, mirin, sesame oil, and chili oil (if using) in a measuring cup (for easier pouring) or small bowl. Mix with a spoon to thoroughly combine, then set aside.
For the Salmon: Remove the fillets from the packaging they came in and gently wipe with paper towels to dry them. Then place them on a plate and season both sides with kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste. Set aside.
For the Garlic Salmon Fried Rice:
Pan-fry the salmon: Heat olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, place the seasoned salmon fillets skin side down in the pan. Cook undisturbed for 3-4 minutes, then turn over the fillets using a fish spatula and cook the flesh side for another 3 minutes. Use tongs or the fish spatula to turn and crisp up the sides of the fillets – about 15-20 seconds for each side. Once the salmon fillets have cooked through, transfer the fillets to a clean plate and allow to rest for 5-10 minutes. Then flake the flesh with a fork and set aside. (Note: Keeping the skin on is up to you and a matter of personal preference. I prefer to discard the skin and just use salmon fillet flesh for this fried rice.)
Stir-fry the veggies and aromatics: In a large wok, heat the peanut oil, and the remaining sesame oil and chili oil (if using) over high heat. Once smoking, turn the heat down to medium-high and add the onion and spring onion whites. Stir-fry for a minute until translucent, then add the carrots and carrot celery and continue stir-frying for another minute. Add the garlic, ginger, and red chilies and stir-fry until fragrant – about 1-2 minutes.
Cook the eggs: Push the veggies and aromatics to the side and add a bit of oil into the wok. Pour in the beaten eggs and allow to set for a few seconds. Then scramble the eggs with your spatula and toss to combine with everything else in the wok. Season with freshly cracked black pepper, kosher salt, white pepper, crushed red pepper chili flakes (if using), and sugar and stir-fry to combine.
Add the rice, sauce, and salmon: Add the rice into the wok and pour the sauce all over it. Continue stir-frying for 3-4 minutes to combine, breaking up the clumps of rice as you go with your spatula. Then add the flaked salmon and toss for another minute or two, or until heated through. Taste and season with additional sugar, salt, or pepper if needed. Then switch off the heat and stir in most of the spring onion greens until combined.
To Serve: Transfer the Garlic Salmon Fried Rice to a serving dish (or bowls). Drizzle a little sesame oil on top if desired and garnish with the remainder spring onion greens. Serve immediately (or cool quickly and store in airtight sealed containers in the fridge for 3-4 days).
Make it vegetarian: Omit the salmon, or swap for pan-fried tempeh or crispy pan-fried tofu cubes.
Go vegan: Ditto the above, but omit the eggs as well. Or you can just make this incredibly delicious vegan Crispy Tofu Spicy Fried Rice instead!
Add or use different veggies: I kept it simple and went with my go-to fried rice veggies – onion, carrots, and celery. But you can also add/swap for snap peas, peas, corn, broccoli florets, green beans, or any fried rice or stir-fry friendly veggies you like!
Use another type of fish: I’ve made this fried rice with pan-fried cod fillets and it tastes delicious! Simply lightly coat the cod in cornstarch and season with kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Pan-fry it on both sides for 3-4 minutes in a bit of olive oil or unsalted butter, and drizzle a bit of freshly squeezed lemon juice on the fish while it’s cooking. Then flake the fillets and add it to the fried rice instead of the salmon. You can also opt to use halibut, mahi mahi, or sea bass instead of the salmon if you like.
Use a different protein: Just about any protein will work well and taste great in this fried rice. So take your pick from chicken, beef, pork, shrimp, tempeh, or tofu if salmon (and other types of fish) is not your thing.