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  • Writer's pictureLeanne Fullwood

Kimchi Fried Rice

I’d seen this sort of dish cooked a few times on some tv programmes and it ticked all the right boxes for me. I’ve been a fan of kimchi for a long time and I’m fortunate enough that I can get it in Chinese supermarkets around the midlands pretty easily. Health food shops and some larger supermarkets do stock this though! If you can’t get kimchi, you could add some steamed cabbage and some good quality chilli sauce as a simple alternative. Kimchi has great nutritional benefits including being a great source of folate (important during pregnancy), potassium and calcium. Kimchi is fermented which is proven to have great benefit for intestinal health and anti-inflammatory support. The only thing to be aware of is that kimchi can be high in salt content so do read the label of the kimchi you’re using and you definitely don’t need extra salt in the fried rice- this is all the seasoning you’ll need.

The recipe calls for cold, cooked rice and it’s definitely important for the dish. When cooking and cooling rice, it’s vital to cool it quickly to avoid harmful bacteria. I put a large baking tray in the fridge while the rice is cooking. I cook rice using a 1:2 ratio (1 cup of rice to 2 cups water) and when it’s cooked, I tip the fluffy rice onto the tray and “fan“ the rice with a baking tray/thick piece of cardboard or hand fan, turning the rice regularly to cool it as quickly as possible. once cooled, it’s fine in the fridge for up to 2 days.

Because there’s minimum prep to this dish, you can put it together from start to finish in about 15 minutes- definitely my kind of weekday, speedy supper!!

Kimchi Fried rice

Serves 2

Takes about 15 minutes to make!


1 tbsp rapeseed oil

1 clove garlic, crushed

1/2 tsp ginger purée

2 cups cooked, cold rice

1tsp Sesame oil

1 leek, thinly sliced

3 spring onions, sliced

100g Thick cut ham (or ham trimmings) or 6 crispy cooked rashers of bacon

Handful of spinach

100g kimchi (available from Chinese supermarkets)

100g frozen peas (optional)

Splash of soy sauce

Pinch chilli flakes (optional if you like it hor

Optional toppings: chilli sauce, black sesame seeds, fresh coriander


1. Heat the rapeseed oil in a wok on a medium heat and add the garlic, ginger, chilli flakes, sliced leeks and the chopped white parts of the spring onions (preserve the green stalks for garnish). Gently fry for 2-3 minutes.

2. Turn up the heat and add the cold, cooked rice. Press up the sides of the pan and leave to cook and you’ll start to hear the rice pop and crackle as it goes crisp.

3. After 2 minutes, add the chopped ham or cooked bacon, spinach, frozen peas, soy sauce and kimchi and stir everything together. Drizzle with the 1 tsp sesame oil.

4. Pile the kimchi rice into bowls, and scatter with extras like corriander, black sesame seeds and extra chilli paste if you really like it hot!

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