Pineapple Fried Rice

This Pineapple Fried Rice features just a touch of sweetness from the fresh pineapple…and it’s seriously tasty!

This Pineapple Fried Rice features just a touch of sweetness from the fresh pineapple...and it's seriously tasty!Have you guys ever gone back to your favorite restaurants from when you were younger?  Maybe it’s a favorite restaurant from your childhood.  Or maybe it’s that well-loved pizza place you’d go to every Friday night in your 20’s.  Going back to those places is a real trip down memory lane…but sometimes you realize that the food just isn’t as good as you remember.

This Pineapple Fried Rice features just a touch of sweetness from the fresh pineapple...and it's seriously tasty!Case in point: Laura’s favorite Chinese restaurant in her hometown in Pennsylvania.  For years, Laura told me about this little Chinese restaurant that was just across the street from her house.  They’d go there quite often growing up, and in fact their neighbors owned the restaurant.  So of course I wanted to check this place out!  Every time we’d visit, we’d always say, “Let’s go to that Chinese place across the street.”  But we never seemed to make our way there.  Until one recent trip.

This Pineapple Fried Rice features just a touch of sweetness from the fresh pineapple...and it's seriously tasty!We arrived in town late and decided to pick up Chinese take-out for dinner.  We ordered way too much food (isn’t that always the case?), and settled down after a long day on the road.  As we dug into each container of food, we slowly realized that it just wasn’t that amazing.  I mean the food wasn’t bad, but it just wasn’t as good as Laura remembered it being.  There’s a Mexican place back in Durham, NC where I went to college…and I think about that place often.  They had the best quesadillas and burritos!  It was the perfect late-night food after a night of partying, or, uh, studying.  But I wonder whether that place is as good as I remember?

This Pineapple Fried Rice features just a touch of sweetness from the fresh pineapple...and it's seriously tasty!One of the dishes we ordered from Laura’s favorite Chinese place was a simple fried rice.  And it just didn’t have any flavor.  Like none.  At all.  (We ended up ‘doctoring’ it with other ingredients at home…)  Laura and I love whipping up fried rice if we ever have leftover rice in the house.  So I set out to come up with a darned good recipe for fried rice.  And that’s where this Pineapple Fried Rice comes into the picture.  It’s darned good!  Like really darned good!

This Pineapple Fried Rice features just a touch of sweetness from the fresh pineapple...and it's seriously tasty!I normally don’t like Pineapple Fried Rice as I feel like it’s just way too sweet.  (And I have issues with sweet and savory in the same dish…)  But this version totally works.  It’s mostly savory with just a little bit of sweetness from the diced pineapple.  And this Pineapple Fried Rice comes together in no time at all.

I highly recommend prepping all of your ingredients first.  (This can be done while the rice cooks and then cools.)  Once you start cooking this one, it’ll be done before you know it…so be ready.  And then be ready to eat because this Pineapple Fried Rice is amazing.  It’s seriously way better than takeout!  Enjoy, my friends!

Did you make this recipe at home?  Leave a comment, or snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog) – I’d love to see your version!

This Pineapple Fried Rice features just a touch of sweetness from the fresh pineapple...and it's seriously tasty!

Pineapple Fried Rice

This Pineapple Fried Rice features just a touch of sweetness from the fresh pineapple…and it’s seriously tasty!
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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 380kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 cups uncooked white rice
  • 4 cups water
  • ¾ cup white onion finely diced
  • 2 medium carrots finely diced
  • cups pineapple diced
  • 3 Tbsp canola oil divided
  • 2 large eggs lightly beaten
  • 2 tsp garlic minced
  • ½ cup peas frozen or fresh
  • ½ cup corn frozen or fresh
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • green onions

Instructions

  • Using a large saucepan, combine rice and water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and let simmer for 20 minutes. (Tip: Place the rice in the refrigerator to cool. Cooled rice tends to break apart easier in the pan, which is perfect for fried rice.)
  • Using a wok or large sauté pan, add 1 Tbsp of canola oil; place over high heat. Once hot, add onion, carrots and pineapple. Cook, stirring often, for 5-7 minutes, or until vegetables have softened. Remove mixture and set aside.
  • Once rice is cooked, pour remaining 2 Tbsp of oil into wok or sauté pan. Once hot, crumble cooked rice into pan with fingers; stir until well combined. Push rice to sides of pan to create a well; add eggs into well, stirring constantly to scramble eggs in pan. Once eggs are cooked, add the garlic, cooked pineapple/carrots/onions, peas, corn, soy sauce and sesame oil; stir until well combined. Continue cooking, stirring constantly, for 60 seconds.
  • Garnish with green onions before serving.

This Pineapple Fried Rice features just a touch of sweetness from the fresh pineapple...and it's seriously tasty!

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24 Comments

    1. Ohhh, I think this pineapple fried rice would definitely be good friends with some juicy, marinated chicken. 🙂 Great idea, Jeff!

  1. Now you have me thinking back to all my fav restaurants and cafes from my younger days – there was this one hole in the wall place in Abu Dhabi that used to make THE BESTEST eva fish curry – at least – that used to be what my 17 year old self thought when I lived there – you have me pondering what I’d think now… then there was that apple-cake place in Sri Lanka that would have me sneaking cupcakes into the house and eating them in the bathroom so I didn’t have to share… hmmm… am gonna be pondering if I need to take a trip there to check those apple cakes out for myself now!
    Btw – back to this pineapple fried rice – glad you overcame your issues with sweet and savory enough to come up with this concoction! I, personally, love the combo of sweet and savory and this sounds like it would disappear quickly in our home!

    1. That’s the funny thing about food memories…I mean, will the actual taste live up the memories that we have of it? Sometimes it does. But sometimes it doesn’t. So that’s why we’ve taken to recreating so many recipes at home! Now I have a recipe that I know will taste good whether I make it now or 20 years from now! 🙂 Thanks so much, Shashi!! (Also, sneak me an apple cupcake? Please?)

  2. I can’t think of any restaurants that aren’t as good as I remember but my mom used to make cottage cheese pancakes when I was little and I LOVED them. I asked her to make them a few years ago and they were so gross I couldn’t even finish one. I felt bad but my mom was like whatever–apparently she never understood why I liked them in the first place :). This fried rice sounds AMAZING! I love the addition of pineapple. Have a great week, David!

    1. Haha! So I just chalk that one up to your tastebuds changing over time. You know, they say our tastebuds change every 7 years. And apparently cottage cheese pancakes were totally a thing of the previous tastebud generation! 🙂

  3. Hi David. This would be my entire meal. I love fried rice, but the few times I have had it at restaurants it seemed to be lacking in flavor and freshness. The fresh pineapple here really brightens this dish. I make a bacon fried rice that’s pretty tasty.

    1. Oh, we definitely made a meal out of this fried rice, Dorothy! I am a huge fan of fried rice, and I’m really glad I finally tackled this one at home. It’s so darned tasty…and now I don’t have to hope that the fried rice from the restaurant tastes good. And bacon fried rice? Why have I not done that yet?? You and I share a total love for all things bacon! 🙂

  4. That totally sucks when you go to a favourite restaurant that you used to visit only to discover it is not as good. Like, what happened? Did your tastes change? Did the food. Ugh. One thing is for sure, though – homemade is always better and the presentation of this one is a sure beauty, David! How fun to serve at a dinner party. P.S. You ALWAYS have to order extra Chinese food when getting take out…it’s kinda mandatory cause you always need leftovers for the next day 😉

    1. See, I totally agree with you, Dawn! You end up wondering whether the restaurant just wasn’t that good in the first place, or whether your tastes changed over the years. That’s why we’ve taken to just creating recipes here at home…and thus, the food blog. 🙂 Now whenever I want good pineapple fried rice, I have a recipe I can turn to! And, yes, this one does indeed make enough for leftovers…that’s a requirement. Haha!

  5. This is definitely a childhood memory for me!! We use to go every Sunday, to this chinese restaurant called Mario! I waited always for the warm rolls with butter at the beginning of the meal and the fried rice in the pineapple! gosh!

    1. The restaurant was called Mario? That sounds like it should be an Italian place not a Chinese place! Do give this one a shot, Gaila…maybe it will bring back some childhood memories! 🙂 Thanks so much, my friend!

  6. I’ve never been a fan of pineapple fried rice. I’m sort of a rice purest and the pineapple chance in my rice throws off my taste buds. But I know how popular this dish is, all of my friends love it, I’m just the odd ball with weird taste buds. My Mom took us to a restaurant she loved going to when she was young and a roach ran across the table. I felt so bad for her, of course, we didn’t eat there and she was heartbroken.

    1. Hey, I’m ok with being a fried rice purist! In fact, I probably still prefer the plain version of fried rice, but the pineapple is a fun way to mix it up. Oh my gosh, what a terrible thought about going to that restaurant your Mom used to love. I would’ve been horrified!

  7. This fried rice looks like it’s full of flavor! Love the pineapple added to the rice and the pineapple bowl! Very clever!!! Things always seem different than when you were a kid. I’ve revisited several places that I always thought were humongous only to realize – nope…not big at all! I think we have a different perspective as a kid.

    1. Oh, this fried rice really is packed with flavor! That’s how I like to roll, Kathy…tons of flavor. 🙂 (That’s also why we decided to learn how to make fried rice at home as the restaurant versions often lacked the flavor we wanted.) And it really is funny to think about our perspectives as kids. My tastebuds have changed so much since then!

  8. Like Jeff said above David, I just love how you’ve used the pineapple shell to serve the pineapple fried rice! Ingenious! 🙂

    Lynne and I used to love an Indian restaurant near her home town of Greenock. It served the most amazing curry and superb Kingfisher Beer on tap. Unfortunately the last time we went there they had become too big for their boots and were trying to cope with a full restaurant as well as a busy take out business. Well, we waited ages for our food and when it came it didn’t taste right. I had lamb desi, I usually had that at that Indian restaurant as it was always well cooked and tender. Not this time, it was like old boots. I felt ill and had to leave. And to top it all they knocked over a drink on the table whilst serving and didn’t replace it. Shame. It was good once!

    1. Why thank you very much, Neil! This one was as much fun to serve as it was to eat. 🙂 Oh man, that sounds like a terrible experience at that Indian restaurant near Lynne’s hometown. I’m sure you guys went in with the highest expectations for a meal like you remembered…and then they just let you down in so many ways. I guess it’s time to master lamb desi at home, eh? 🙂

    1. Thank you so much, Lindsay! I had fun serving this rice (and taking the photos), and then we totally chowed down on it right from the pineapple! 🙂

  9. I know just what you mean – several years pass and restaurants are rarely how I remember them. Either they change or maybe my tastebuds do! There are some places that I’m honestly afraid to go because I don’t want to damage the memory. (Silly, I know.)

    Fried rice is an absolute favorite dish of mine. This one looks fantastic and so pretty served in the pineapple!

    1. Yeah, it really is frustrating when a restaurant (or any place for that matter) doesn’t live up to the memories you have of it. You go in expecting something amazing, and leave feeling cheated! And for that reason, I think you’re onto something with just not going at all. Keep the good memories unblemished and all! Thanks so much, Marissa! 🙂

  10. yeah, i feel like i hype things up too much in my mind. my mom loves chicken wings from a chinese place in sf, but always feels like they aren’t as good as they used to be. and i’m pretty sure that mexican food isn’t as good as you remembered, unless you prep yourself with some more “studying” beforehand (;

    1. I think that’s the thing, Heather! We hype up our memories so much that the actual experience never lives up to our expectations. That’s what led us to recreating so many recipes here at home! Also, studying before Mexican? I can’t study any more! I’m done with school. Haha! 🙂

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