indonesian fried rice

If we have a national dish – that is well known all over the world for, it would be “Nasi Goreng Indonesia”. Indonesian fried rice has been popular in and out of the country. If you are stranded in some city or town or village and you stepped into local eateries, and if you happened to be not too adventurous in culinary quest, it is the safest item to order and you can always find it in any decent restaurants in sight. Even when they don’t have it in the menu, providing that restaurant do serve rice, you can request for it.

Indonesians like to fit all sorts of flavors and textures in one biteful. That is what sets the fried rice apart from other version found in the region. The condiments are fried shallots, fried rice / prawn crackers, shredded chicken meat and fresh vegetables such as lettuce, sliced cucumber, sliced tomatoes. The flavor is enriched by shrimp paste, chili, garlic and shallots.

As always, the rice used is day-old rice. Newly cooked rice can also be used, if they are properly cooled. However, the fried rice will turn out to be stickier, so proper care in adjusting the heat is needed to ensure that doesn’t happen. Fried rice with grains sticking together is such a turn-off.


11 (35 grams) red chilies
3 (15 grams) garlic cloves
6 (40 grams) shallots
1/2 teaspoon (2,5 gr) shrimp paste, toasted
1/2 tablespoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 tablespoon sweet soy sauce (Indonesian brand is preferred)
1/2 tablespoon soy sauce
950 grams cooked rice
5 tablespoons cooking oil


1/4 cup fried shallots
1 (250 grams) cucumber, peeled and sliced
150 grams gnemon crackers, fried (emping)
50 grams red & white crackers (alternatively can be substituted with prawn crackers), fried
2 (30 grams) leeks, white and green part, finely chopped
10 grams chinese celery, finely chopped
125 grams chicken breast (cooked by pan-frying / deep-frying and shredded)
5 eggs, pan-fried into thin slices of omelette and cut thinly
Shallots and chili pickles (recipe follows)


  • Place chilies, garlic, shallots, salt, sugar and shrimp paste in a mortar and pound with the pestle to form a paste
  • In a separate bowl, mix the soy sauce and sweet soy sauce with the rice, stir well
  • Heat cooking oil in a wok till smoky. Add the paste and stir fry for 2 minutes, until the color turned slightly brownish and fragrant
  • Add rice, breaking any lumps, until all ingredients are combined evenly and the rice is heated through. This will take 15 to 20 minutes
  • Adjust the seasoning by adding more salt if needed and toss in chopped celery and leek. Cook for another 3 minutes
  • Serve garnished with fried shallots and other condiments


If you don’t like getting physical – electric blender can be used to grind the spices. If you don’t have a big wok, work on it in small batches.

The level of spiciness can be adjusted by reducing the amount of red chili (or thai chillies) called for, or you can always remove the seeds before grinding them

Cooking oil used should be flavorless such as canola, sunflowers or corn oil. Strong smelling cooking oil such as coconut oil would be too overpowering

I did read another version where the spice paste is mixed well in a bowl with rice and then stir-fried. It is an interesting technique worth experimenting with

Indonesian fried rice normally used javanica, which is a medium grain, fat and dry with low sticky character. The better quality rice would be the nicely polished and white ones with no broken grains.

Preparation time 30 minutes

Yield 4 – 6 servings

Step by Step Shots

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28 Responses to “Indonesian Fried Rice, Nasi Goreng”

  1. 1

    Christelle — April 16, 2009 @ 4:54 pm

    Welcome back, and you return with a gorgeous recipe and photos. That’s a great dish, tasted it many times in restaurants but never made it! I will now :) ) Thanks!

  2. 2

    noobcook — April 17, 2009 @ 3:28 am

    glad you’re back! fried rice looks really good, and I luv your composition and beautiful food styling.

    noobcook’s last blog post..Baked Nacho Chips with Bacon, Cheddar & Jalapenos

  3. 3

    mycookinghut — April 17, 2009 @ 12:11 pm

    Glad to see you back and blogging again! The fried rice looks real good!

    mycookinghut’s last blog post..Soba Noodle in Kombu Dashi with Teriyaki Salmon

  4. 4

    Tangled Noodle — April 19, 2009 @ 2:52 am

    Thanks for this recipe! Nasi goreng is delicious but I don’t get to eat it as often as I’d like.

  5. 5

    pablopabla — April 19, 2009 @ 10:16 am

    Good to see you again and this is an all-time favourite in this region :D

    pablopabla’s last blog post..Fried Bitter Gourd with Salted Egg

  6. 6

    Kevin — April 19, 2009 @ 3:01 pm

    This fried rice sounds really good. I like all of the flavours in it.

  7. 7

    tigerfish — April 20, 2009 @ 1:08 pm

    Glad that you are back.

    Look! The wok is hot! That is how great fried rice is done!

    tigerfish’s last blog post..Onion Soup (Non-French Style)

  8. 8

    Jun — April 22, 2009 @ 3:52 am

    Christelle ,
    Thank you so much for the nice comment!

    It is certainly nice to be back. I just realised how much I missed blogging

    Thank you .. I really tried to put your food photography tips in practice, and as always, more practice is needed

    You should totally do this at home, very tasty and it can keep you filled up for quite a while. Hahaha.

    It is a feast in a plate

    I know, it’s great to be back. The wok was hot. I guess that’s the reason why mine never worked before.

    I know, fried rice is always nice as meal. Thank you for dropping by

  9. 9

    Happysurfer — April 22, 2009 @ 5:50 am

    Fried rice is the safest dish to order anywhere and it’s the easiest to prepare at home. I like mine with salted fish too. Great post – recipe, pictures and all. Kudos, Jun! Again, good to have you back blogging. :)

    Happysurfer’s last blog post..Investing in Amanah Saham Malaysia

  10. 10

    Alice — April 23, 2009 @ 9:41 am

    Simply delicious and lovely!

  11. 11

    Citro — May 1, 2009 @ 6:32 pm

    This is my favourite breakfast. Really fast to prepare it and tasty. The picture looks great Jun. :)

  12. 12

    Citro — May 1, 2009 @ 6:39 pm

    This is my favourite breakfast. Really fast to prepare and tasty. The picture is great… Jun. Just like you. :)

  13. 13

    Clarice — May 12, 2009 @ 5:56 am

    This looks absolutely delicious. I was also wondering, what are gnemon crackers? I live in Canada, so I’m not sure if they’re available here.

  14. 14

    RavenousCouple — May 17, 2009 @ 3:30 pm

    Just discovered your site…great food and photogaphy. May we request the recipe of ong choy/morning glory w/ belecan? Love that!

  15. 15

    RavenousCouple — May 17, 2009 @ 3:31 pm

    Just discovered your site…great food and photogaphy. May we request that you one day make ong choy/morning glory w/ belecan? Love that!

  16. 16

    Vani — August 6, 2009 @ 9:14 pm

    Hi Rina, I tried your version of Nasi Goreng and loved it. Thanks for a great recipe. Have linked this post from mine-

  17. 17

    Ronald SK Mitchell — October 23, 2009 @ 10:18 pm

    Aloha Rina, I really miss makanan Indonesia. On of the simple dishes was sajur menijo degang ikan kering, sambal tjabe rawit dangang trasi dan lalab pete beans……

  18. 18

    Hj.Sugi Darmayanti,S.Pd — February 16, 2010 @ 7:40 am

    i like all recipes very much,thanks,it’s very helpful

  19. 19

    Ridho — July 28, 2010 @ 9:40 am

    Halo semua, saya orang indonesia asli nih… hahaha… gak nyangka ya, makanan indonesia ternyata terkenal di luar negeri. Oh ya, ibu saya pandai memasak. jadi kapan-kapan kalo mampir ke Jakarta bisa hubungi saya. siapa tau kita bisa wisata kuliner bareng. haha. salam. (

    hi everybody. i’m indonesian. i wonder that indonesian food has been apreciated well in another country. Uhm, my mom really good chef. so, when you visit to Jakarta you can contact me. id like to join wisata kuliner with you. regards. (

  20. 20

    Michael Young — August 10, 2010 @ 2:19 pm

    Hi, this is where I found you. I added you to my facebook. I only signed up to facebook to be able to contact you. you are pretty and great cook too.

  21. 21

    Nasi Goreng – Fried Rice « Indonesia at World Expo Shanghai 2010 — August 30, 2010 @ 7:28 pm

    [...]   “Indonesia is counted amongst the largest producers of nutmeg and [...]

  22. 22

    Ronald SK Mitchell — November 19, 2010 @ 12:30 pm

    Halo Rina, Saja juga bisa masak makanan enak dari Indonesia. Kamu tau dimana saja bisa balle cripic maningo? Cripic maningo enak sekali dengan combinasi, ikan kering, nasi kuning, gadogado dan sambel trassi goreng.

    Translation: Hi Rina, I also can cook good food from Indonesia. Do you know where can I can I buy maningo chips? Cripic maningo is very tasty with the combination of dried fish, yellow rice, gadogado (vegetables with peanut sauce) and fried hot chills, with shallots, tomatoes, garlic, shrimp paste.

    Salamat Tingal Jumpa Lagi dengan email- Plesent Journey until we meet again via email. Saja juga ada di face book – I’m also on face book.

  23. 23

    Karisma — September 15, 2011 @ 4:13 am

    hi, what can we substitute for the shrimp paste for vegetarians

    • Jun replied: — September 25th, 2011 @ 8:26 am

      Karisma, shrimp paste is usually substituted by mushroom paste. It is a ‘fake’ shrimp paste catered for vegetarians in Indonesian dishes.

  24. 24

    Karisma — September 15, 2011 @ 4:18 am

    also how do u make nasi groeng paste ???

  25. 25

    Masak Nasi Goreng Telur | Masakan Indonesia — May 23, 2014 @ 12:51 am

    [...] Indochine kitchen » indonesian fried rice , nasi goreng If we have a national dish – that is well known all over the world for, it would be “nasi goreng indonesia”. indonesian fried rice has been popular in and out. [...]

  26. 26

    Fdma — April 9, 2015 @ 10:13 pm

    i very very like it fried rice indonesia

  27. 27

    raku — April 9, 2015 @ 10:14 pm

    yes i like it fried rice :*

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