I don’t think I’m alone when I say that this season of life has included a lot of homemade meals and figuring out how to make that one dish that you usually only get for take-out.
Curried Shrimp Fried Rice is that for me.
It was a matter of using what I had on hand at first, throwing in a bit of this and that, and of course curry powder because when the curry fried rice craving hits, it hits hard, and I needed it.
So here we are: still in this season of life and making all the homemade fried rice we can. Because we can. And because it’s damn good.
There are a few (ok, really just one) really important tips to follow when making fried rice, which we’ll get to, but first do know that I love this recipe because it truly is so customizable.
You can swap vegetables with what you have on hand (or, you know, ones you love). You can switch up the proteins – try chicken, tofu, or just add extra veggies. You really cannot go wrong with the base of this recipe, so let’s get to it!
Steps to Making Shrimp Fried Rice
I know you’re here for easy recipes, and let it be known that this is easy, it just requires a few additional steps to perfection. It’s not a “one and done” kind of meal, but once your prep is out of the way, it’s a breeze to make.
Start by marinating the shrimp in a bit of soy sauce and curry powder (as always, see the recipe card for full details and ingredients). The shrimp transform into flavor loaded curried shrimp and are fan-tas-tic!
We’re only going to do so for about 15 minutes, which is perfect time to prep the remaining ingredients. Chop the carrots, onion, and mushrooms. Mince the garlic and ginger. You know, the sometime tedious work that’s going to pay off big time in the end.
Once the shrimp has marinated, it’s time to cook it.
We’ll sauté the shrimp up first, being really careful to not overcook them as they’ll cook a little bit more once they’re added back into the final dish.
Remove the shrimp, and add the onion and carrots. Since these take longer to soften, they go in first. I like to add a pinch of salt here, because I always like to season my veggies, but that’s up to you, since the soy sauce has plenty of salt to begin with.
Next goes the mushrooms, garlic, and ginger.
Mushrooms have a lot of water in them, so be sure to let them sauté out all the water so they become rich and caramelized.
Then, the final addition: peas. Use frozen (as pictured) that you’ve already thawed out, or add snap peas and let them cook for a minute. I use both just depending on what I have on hand.
You’ll remove the veggies from the skillet so that our rice has the entire skillet to itself.
Here’s the most important fried rice tip that I mentioned earlier: if you want your fried rice to be, well, fried and slightly crisp with actual rice pieces (opposed to a kind of mushy rice mess), use leftover and/or cold rice.
I like to make a big batch of rice in my Instant Pot, spread it out on a large baking sheet, and let it cool in the fridge.
This method works days before or the day of if you have that last-minute craving.
Can you use just cooked rice? Sure, but the texture may not be great. If you’ve just cooked it, I would still recommend letting it cool in the fridge before using in this recipe.
Add oil to the skillet – this is important to get that fried rice texture – and spread the rice in an even layer, leaving it untouched for 3-4 minutes.
Flip it, add the sauce, and spread evenly again.
Last step: put it all together! Add the veggies and shrimp back in, stir it up, and enjoy!
I like to garnish with scallions, cilantro, chopped cashews, and a lime wedge.
I like garnishes, what can I say? But really, they add a lovely brightness and freshness that’s unmatched!
More Better-Than-Take-Out Recipes
- Vegetable Pad Thai
- Lo Mein for Two
- Pineapple Fried Rice
- Vegetable Potstickers
- Miso Ginger Glazed Salmon
- Spicy Teriyaki Sauce
Get the Recipe Curried Shrimp Fried Rice
- Shrimp: Whisk together curry powder, cumin, soy sauce, and olive oil. Pour over shrimp and toss until completely coated. Let sit for 15 minutes.
- Heat a large skillet with sides over medium heat and add the additional tablespoon of olive oil. Add shrimp and sautee approximately 1 minute on each side, until just slightly pint and translucent. You don’t want to overcook as they will continue to cook once added back into fried rice. Remove from pan and set aside.
- The Sauce: Whisk together fried rice sauce ingredients and set aside.
- The Fried Rice: If the skillet is fairly dry, add an additional tablespoon of olive oil. Add carrot and onion to heated skillet and saute for 3-4 minutes until slightly soft. Add the mushrooms, garlic, and ginger, sauteing for an additional 3-4 minutes until mushrooms have cooked down and water has simmered out of them. Add snap peas, or peas, and cook until slightly tender (3-4 minutes for snap peas, 1 -2 minutes for thawed peas). Remove from skillet and set aside.
- Add 3 TBSP neutral oil to the skillet. Spread the cooked rice evenly in the skillet and let sit for 3-4 minutes without touching. Toss with stir fry sauce, and spread again in an even layer. Cook for an additional 3-4 minutes until slightly fried. Add shrimp and vegetables back in, tossing until evenly dispersed.
- Serve immediately and garnish as desired: lime wedges, chopped cashews, scallions, and cilantro are all amazing.