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Vegan Kimchi Fried Rice

  • Author: Liz Madsen
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 6 cups 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


Satisfying as an entree or exciting side, this Vegan Kimchi Fried Rice is surprisingly easy and quick to make.


Units Scale

Vegan Kimchi Fried Rice

  • 1 bunch green onions (or any onion), chopped (separate white and green parts)
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups vegan kimchi (see note 1), roughly chopped + extra for garnish
  • 4 cups cooked rice, preferably day old (see note 2)
  • 1 cup frozen peas or vegetable of choice
  • 1/4 cup reduced sodium soy sauce or gluten-free tamari(see note 3)
  • 1-2 tablespoons toasted or regular sesame oil, optional (see note 4)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar, or any, optional

Optional garnishes


  1. Saute the onions: Start by sauteing the chopped white parts of the green onion in a large nonstick pot. If you cook with oil, add a little neutral high heat oil to the pan and let it warm up before adding the green onion. If you don’t cook with oil, just add the onions and a splash of water (about a tablespoon) if things start to stick or brown. Cook the green onions for 1 minute over medium high heat.
  2. Add garlic: Add the minced garlic and stir well, cooking for an additional minute.
  3. Add kimchi: Now add the chopped vegan kimchi. Cook for about 4-5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  4. Add rice: Add in the cooked rice. Break up any clumps with your cooking spoon. Stir well and let the rice absorb the juices from the kimchi.
  5. Mix the sauce: Mix the soy sauce, sesame oil (if using), and coconut sugar in a small bowl and add to the pot. Stir well.
  6. Add veg: Add your vegetables now. If using frozen peas, you can just add them frozen and they’ll cook perfectly.
  7. Cook: Stir and allow the mixture to cook for 2-3 minutes undisturbed. This will create a little crispiness at the bottom. Stir and repeat the same process once or twice, depending on how you like your rice. 
  8. Add remaining onions: Stir in the green parts of the green onion (save a few for garnish if you like) and remove from heat.
  9. Serve: Serve immediately and garnish as you like.
  10. Store: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 4 days.


  • Note 1: So kimchi is not traditionally made vegan, so you’ll need to make sure that the brand you buy specifically says Vegan. I have a few brands in my grocery stores (US-Midwest based) that have a vegan kimchi, including Wildbrine, Nasoya, and Mother-in-Law (they also make non-vegan kimchi, so be sure to read the label). You can also make your own vegan kimchi if you prefer. A quick note that cooking the kimchi does take away the probiotic effect, so save a little to top your rice with if you’d like to get some probiotic benefit from this meal.
  • Note 2: Any short grain rice works well (I used white Jasmine rice here)--I’ve also seen people use quinoa or other grains. Brown or white rice are both fine. Day old refrigerated cooked rice is best for this as it soaks up more flavor and the starch is a bit different, but you can absolutely just cook a batch of rice and then make this dish. Just let the rice cool a little bit while you do the other prep work.
  • Note 3: You can use any soy sauce you like, but I generally find regular soy sauce to be much too salty. If you’re gluten-free, try gluten-free tamari. If you can’t have soy, try No-Soy or Coconut Aminos.
  • Note 4: Okay, so I’m a mostly oil-free blog now promoting you use oil… This is definitely optional. Sesame oil is super flavorful and adds a lot to dishes with Asian influences. I was inspired by a lot of recipes that do use sesame oil as a big flavor boost. However, I understand that some oil-free folks cannot make any allowances. The recipe is absolutely delicious either way, but if your diet allows for a tiny bit of oil, add a little of sesame oil (ideally toasted sesame oil to your fried rice.
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Category: Entree
  • Method: Stove top
  • Cuisine: Korean

Keywords: Vegan, Oil-Free, Nut-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, Can Be Gluten-Free, Can Be Soy-Free, Vegan Fried Rice, Vegan Kimchi Fried Rice