This colorful beet fried rice is made by stir-frying diced beets with coconut oil, curry paste, and spices, and then crisping them in the pan with cooked rice. Stir-fried vegetables and/or protein can be added to make it a meal!
I thought you’d like a little break from Thanksgiving-y comfort food. But this beet fried rice is still very autumn appropriate! And I definitely won’t stop you from serving it at Thanksgiving if you’re going the non-traditional route :).
Kind of like how I don’t always feel like soaking and blending raw cashews, sometimes I am just not in the mood to spend an hour roasting whole beets. I figured I would see what happened if I cut the beets into tiny cubes and stir-fried them in coconut oil, and it turns out that I LOVE cooking them this way. They get juicy and sweet but still maintain some bite. Combining them with crisped fried rice and a curry and citrus sauce, I think I’m pretty close to beetroot heaven.
I love the vibrant pink color that the beet infuses into this whole fried rice dish. Even better is the flavor! I’m always looking for ways to add a little natural sweetness to my curries and stir-fries so that I can avoid added sugar, and beets absolutely delivered on that here. Beets and oranges are a classic pairing and so I also sweetened the stir-fry sauce with a little bit of freshly-squeezed orange juice.
Also, this rice dish features that turmeric + black pepper combo that I know many of you like to incorporate into your cooking.
This dish works well with both brown or white rice, and you could also try other grains or pseudograins like quinoa or millet for a twist. Cauliflower rice works really well in my Thai vegetable fried rice, but I might not recommend it in my beet fried rice because the cauliflower + beet might be Too Much Earthy. But some people like that I suppose!
I enjoyed my beet fried rice with some vegetables that I stir-fried in a separate wok, as you can see pictured above. Normally when I make this, I cook everything in the same pan. The vegetables were cooked separately this time purely to keep them free of beet blood for the photographs.
I had much difficulty making up my mind whether to title this Beet Fried Rice or Beetroot Fried Rice. Ultimately I went with the American version. But between you and me, I think ‘beetroot’ sounds nicer. Just as I think ‘aubergine’ is a better word than ‘eggplant’. 🙂 Either way, if you try this beet fried rice, let me know in the comments here or by tagging your photos with #yupitsvegan and @yupitsvegan!
Beet Fried Rice
For the beets and aromatics:
- 1 and 1/2 tbsp coconut oil
- 340 g beets peeled and finely diced (2 medium-sized beets)
- 1 inch ginger peeled and minced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/4 tsp ground cumin
- 1/4 tsp ground coriander
- 1/4 tsp ground turmeric
- 1/8 tsp ground black pepper
- 3 tbsp Thai red curry paste
For the stir-fry:
- 1 crown broccoli cut into florets
- 1 bell pepper cut into strips
- 1 onion (any color) sliced
- 1/2 small head purple cabbage chopped
- 3 cups cooked brown rice
- 1/2 cup diced pineapple
For the sauce mixture:
- 1/4 cup freshly-squeezed orange juice
- 2 tbsp freshly-squeezed lime juice
- 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
- Heat the coconut oil in a large, wide pan over medium-high heat. Add the diced beets and stir well. Continue to cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes or until beets are starting to soften. Add the ginger and garlic and cook for 30 seconds, until fragrant.
- Add the cumin, coriander, turmeric, and black pepper, and stir. Immediately add the Thai red curry paste. Cook, stirring constantly, for about 2-3 more minutes or until fragrant.
- Next add your vegetables to the pan and stir well; continue to cook while stirring frequently until the vegetables have turned bright in color and are crisp-tender. Add the cooked rice and diced pineapple and stir to combine. Finally, add the sauce to the pan and cook, stirring frequently, until hot throughout.
- Served warm, garnished with chopped scallions, toasted cashews, and other accompaniments as desired.
Ally ferguson says
Chosen this for a family pre wedding celebration. Would love to make ahead; Will it freeze okay? Many thanks.
Shannon @ Yup, it's Vegan says
You can definitely cook the rice in advance, but I am unsure if the rest of it would freeze well. It might! Maybe it’s worth doing a trial run? Congrats on the wedding in the family!
My first time cooking with BEETS! They’ve always come from a jar with LOTS OF SUGAR! I absolutely love this recipe. The flavors all complement each other. I cut the beets smaller than pictured and it worked out great. Still had some firmness to them. Note: the with broccoli florets should also be small. I will be making this again. I think the key for me was having every item cut chopped and prepped before I started the cooking process.
Carrie R Rosenblatt says
This was so good, and a good way to use leftovers in the fridge – I had beets and tofu. I used less beets, less rice and less veggies than the recipe calls but used about the same amount of seasonings and sauce, and I can barely taste the seasonings.. what went wrong?
Added to my recipe rotation, this was delicious thank you so much
I was looking for something new to make with beets and decided to try this. It was different in a good way and just really good in general! I’ll go out of my way to make it again!
Just made this! It’s soooo good thank u for this recipe!!
This recipe was amazing – I normally eat based on my blood type (B+). It felt this recipe was made for – had all my beneficial veggies – it was so flavourful
Shannon @ Yup, it's Vegan says
Glad to hear that, Veet! I don’t know too much about blood type based eating but I am glad this recipe was a good fit for you!
Amy Carter says
Added the ribs and leaves of bunch of rainbow chard. A little less curry paste and didn’t have pineapple. Everything else the same. This is a fantastic recipe! Will definately make again! Thank you!
Shannon @ Yup, it's Vegan says
The addition of chard sounds delicious! Glad you enjoyed it.
Kari @ bite-sized thoughts says
I love this! What a great colour. I’ve made purple fried rice using purple carrots before, but this would be even more vibrant.
Amazingly beautiful rice ! I love the addition of pineapple in here !