Tag: meal prep

Broccoli Salad

Broccoli Salad

If you’re looking for a quick and delicious way to enjoy broccoli, this simple broccoli salad might just become your new favorite. Inspired by my recent trip to Seoul and reminiscent of banchan, the dizzying array of small side dishes that accompany a Korean BBQ read more

Poached Chicken

Poached Chicken

In theory I get the appeal of meal prepping. In practice though the idea of making a big batch of say, chicken and rice, on a Sunday and then eating that same chicken and rice on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday is my personal read more

Thai Chicken Fried Rice

Thai Chicken Fried Rice

Hard to believe but summer is already winding down to a close, with lots of kids heading back to school next week. To ease you back into the daily grind, I’m sharing one of my easiest and fastest meals, Thai Chicken Fried Rice. It makes excellent use of leftovers; so excellent in fact that you’ll find yourself making extra batches of both rice and chicken so they will be on hand for this speedy family favorite. What makes this dish Thai? I use Jasmine rice, season it with a pop of funky fish sauce, and as a finishing touch I serve it with prik nam pla, the fiery hot sauce I shared last week. Some chopped cilantro, a couple slices of crunchy cooling cucumber, and a squeeze of fresh lime… it’s a feast of flavors in a simple little meal that you can make faster than you can say homework battles and soccer practice.

ingredients thai chicken fried rice

Leftovers Make Thai Chicken Fried Rice Magic!

One of the things I most love about this recipe is that it uses leftover, chilled rice (read about how chilled rice makes the best fried rice here) and also leftover chicken. You have some roast chicken from Sunday’s dinner in the fridge? Perfect! You can even use a store bought rotisserie chicken. Really any kind of leftover chicken will work. If your chicken was made with spices/herbs, you can give it a quick rinse and no one will be the wiser! Using up these leftovers isn’t just economical, it means your Thai Chicken Fried Rice is ready in less than 15 minutes. I start by prepping the garlic and scallions. Like all quick stir fried dishes, it is best to have all your ingredients measured and prepped before beginning.

mince thai chicken fried rice

I can’t say enough good things about cold rice in the fridge. It’s the Asian equivalent of sliced bread in the cabinet: a true staple and workhorse that’s always ready when hunger strikes. Not only can you count on it as a side for quick weeknight meals and fried rices, but it’s perfect for mid-day snacks with a little furikake or topped with a fried egg (insert link here). Since it stays fresh for several days, it’s handy to always have some.

One quick tip about using cold rice: it’s clumpy and in order to heat it evenly and thoroughly, you need to help it along. So use clean wet hands and use your fingers to gently crumble it until all of the lumps are broken up.


Have all of your ingredients right by the stove because you are adding oil and garlic in a smoking hot pan and garlic goes from golden brown to burnt in seconds. Keep a close eye because you will be be tossing in the chicken and in just a few seconds.

Once you add the chicken and rice, you want to use a pressing motion to sear the rice along the sides of the pan before scraping it off and mixing it back in. Searing the rice gives it that authentic flavor that is the hallmark of good restaurant fried rice. Cold rice tends to stick to the pan, but as it heats up, it will be easier to work with so just keep pressing, searing, and scraping.


fish sauce thai chicken fried rice

Once the flavorings are added, give it another minute to fully absorb the fish sauce and then you’re done.

I like to serve my Thai Chicken Fried Rice garnished with some lime, cilantro and sliced cucumber and pass around the prik nam pla so everyone can make theirs as spicy as their heart desires.

Thai Chicken Fried Rice is the perfect meal for a busy school/work night, and I hope everyone at your table loves it! Leave a comment and let me know what you think, and of course tag us in your pics @funkyasiankitchen, we love hearing from you!

If you love Thai food as much we do try some of our other popular recipes like this Green Curry Tofu or Tamarind Shrimp.



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recipe card thai chicken fried rice

Thai Chicken Fried Rice

  • Author: Funky Asian Kitchen
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: serves 2


  • 3 Tablespoons neutral oil
  • 6 cloves garlic minced
  • 6 ounces cooked chicken (about 1 ½ cups roasted, grilled, or even poached is fine)
  • 3 cups cold cooked rice (preferably Jasmine or a medium grain)
  • 2 scallions 
  • 1 Tablespoon fish sauce
  • Ground black pepper


  • 1 persian cucumber trimmed and sliced
  • 1 handful cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
  • 2 lime wedges
  • *Thai Fish Sauce With Hot Chiles 


  1. Trim and mince the scallions, then set aside. 
  2. Separate the rice with wet hands or a fork so that you don’t have any large clumps and set aside.
  3. Heat a wok or wok pan over high heat for several minutes until very hot and smoking. 
  4. Add the oil and the garlic. Swirl the garlic in the oil for a couple of seconds until lightly golden. 
  5. Add the chicken and stir fry for a minute, mixing it well.
  6. Add the rice and keep stir frying for a couple of minutes, pressing the rice into the sides of the pan to sear it and then scraping it off and mixing it back in. It may stick to the sides of the pan at first but it will become less sticky as it cooks. 
  7. Turn off the heat and add the scallions, fish sauce, and ground black pepper to taste. Turn the heat back on and continue cooking for another minute. 
  8. Transfer Thai Chicken Fried Rice to a platter or individual plates. Garnish with the cucumbers, cilantro, and lime wedges.
  9. Serve with the chile fish sauce on the side for additional seasoning.

Keywords: thai, fried rice, chicken, khao phat gai, fast, spicy,

Jackfruit Bowls

Jackfruit Bowls

What shreds like pork, absorbs flavor like tofu, and packs more nutrients per serving than both? Jackfruit! Jackfruit is an incredibly versatile tropical fruit that is grown throughout Southeast Asia. When ripe, it gets sweet, sticky, and yellow-orange and is used in a variety of read more



We are quickly approaching the season of overindulgence. Cocktail parties, Friendsgiving, Thanksgiving, New Years brunches….all filled with delicious, and filling, foods. It’s nice to have a wholesome, nutrient dense meal to restore and recharge in between. That’s where Hijiki comes in. Hijiki is a sea read more

Coconut Shrimp

Coconut Shrimp

Who else loves fried food but doesn’t exactly love deep frying at home? The heat, the splatters, having to dispose of all that oil afterwards… But we still want our yummy, crispy fried foods, right? I’ve come up this Coconut Shrimp recipe that captures everything we love about fried foods, without the mess and the hassle. I honestly prefer the flavors of this one to the standard Coconut Shrimp: the coconut flavor is so much more pronounced and the tamarind dipping sauce is a perfect marriage. Best of all, you can prep the shrimp ahead of time, and just bake right before serving, making this perfect for all the upcoming holiday gatherings.

coconut shrimp ingredients

Tamarind Dipping Sauce

What is Coconut Shrimp without a great dipping sauce? This one comes together in seconds. The tamarind concentrate is at once sweet and tart. The mayo adds a creamy richness, soy sauce a hit of umami, and a little brown sugar and garlic powder to round it out.

tamarind coconut shrimp

Now that the sauce is done, it’s time to prep the shrimp. I butterfly them to provide more surface area for the crispy coconutty coating. Also, it will crisp up more evenly and look attractive on your plate.

If you buy IQF shrimp (individually quick frozen) already peeled, it should take less than a minute to prep each shrimp. I used a jumbo size, which makes for a dramatic presentation, but it’s definitely a luxury. If you’re using smaller shrimp, which would taste just as delicious, cook them for less time to avoid tough overcooked shrimp.

slice coconut shrimp

The butterflied shrimp will look like this:

butterflied coconut shrimp

Real Coconut Flavor

Coconut Shrimp is such a popular appetizer in restaurants. But I’m frequently disappointed when I order it, as you can barely taste the coconut. When I first tried to make it at home, I reached for unsweetened coconut flakes. I always have them at home and I’m naturally inclined to avoid adding extra sugar. That first attempt was pretty good, but the coconut flavor wasn’t as pronounced as I wanted. I switched to sweetened flakes, you know-the kind you find in the baking aisle. Mixing the sweetened flakes with panko provided all the deep coconut flavor and crunch I was craving.

The key to oven frying I’ve found is to give the coating a head start. Raw crumbs never achieve the crisp crunchy texture in the oven, no matter how much oil you use. Toasting the bread crumbs and then the coconut in a pan will make a world of difference. Try the technique for any oven-fried recipe that requires crumb coatings. You will get results that are so good, you may not go back to deep frying at home.

toast coconut shrimp

flour coconut shrimp

I line up the shrimp, flour, eggs, and coconut breadcrumbs. Having it all set up minimizes mess and makes quick work of dredging the shrimp.

dredge coconut shrimp

Then the shrimp gets dredged in the panko coconut mixture. I take the time to lightly press it on, we want that coconut crunchy goodness on every bite.

panko coconut shrimp

spray coconut shrimp

Bake the shrimp until golden brown, about 10 minutes total. Keep a close eye because shredded coconut can burn pretty quickly and you don’t want tough overcooked shrimp. Alternately, you can cook these in an airfryer on 400 for about 10 minutes. With either cooking method, you don’t need to flip the shrimp.

You can prepare the shrimp and keep them in the fridge overnight and bake right before eating. They also freeze beautifully, and you can cook them straight from the freezer, making this a perfect party food! I hope you enjoy these easy Coconut Shrimp as much as we did, leave a comment below and rate the recipe. And let us see your creations by tagging us @funkyasiankitchen, we love hearing from you!

coconut shrimp beauty



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coconut shrimp recipe card

Coconut Shrimp

  • Author: Funky Asian Kitchen
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: serves 4-6 1x
  • Category: small plates
  • Cuisine: Pan-Asian



Tamarind Dipping Sauce:

  • ¼ cup tamarind concentrate
  • 2 Tablespoons neutral oil
  • 1 Tablespoon packed light brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce

For Shrimp:

  • 1 pound peeled and deveined jumbo shrimp, (13/15 count)
  • 1 cup sweetened coconut flakes 
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 Tablespoon Neutral Oil
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup all purpose flour 
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon onion powder
  • 4 dashes salt
  • A pinch of ground black pepper
  • Oil Spray


  1. Combine all the sauce ingredients (tamarind concentrate, oil, garlic powder, mayonnaise, light brown sugar, and soy sauce) in a small bowl and stir to combine. Set aside. 
  2. Pat the shrimp dry and then cut ¾ of the way through the back of the shrimp. Flatten the shrimp gently (either with your hand, back of your knife, or a heavy cup) so it’s butterflied. Set aside. 
  3. Heat a small skillet over medium heat. Add the panko breadcrumbs and the oil. Toast the breadcrumbs for 2-3 minutes, moving them constantly, until they are a nice golden color. Set aside in a bowl.
  4. Heat the same pan over medium heat and add the coconut flakes. Toast them in the pan the same way: 2-3 minutes on medium heat, moving them around, until lightly golden. (The coconut flakes will not be completely golden, which is fine because they will finish toasting later in the oven). Add them to the bowl of toasted panko breadcrumbs and stir to combine. Set aside to cool.
  5. Combine the flour, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder in a shallow bowl and use a fork to stir to combine. Set aside.
  6. Crack the eggs into a small bowl and whisk with a fork. Set aside. 
  7. Season the shrimp with the salt and pepper and toss to combine.
  8. Line up your dredging station with the shrimp, flour mixture, egg wash, and coconut breadcrumbs.
  9. Take one shrimp and dredge the shrimp in the flour so it’s completely coated. Dust off any excess flour and then dip it into the egg. Finally put the shrimp into the coconut crumb mixture. Lightly press the coconut into the shrimp so it is well-coated. Set aside on a plate and continue dredging the remaining shrimp.
  10. Preheat the oven to 425. 
  11. Line a baking tray with parchment paper and spray generously with the oil spray. Line the shrimp on the baking tray and spray the top of the shrimp again with the oil.
  12. Bake the shrimp for 10-12 minutes until the shrimp are golden brown. Serve immediately with the tamarind sauce on the side.


*You can prep and refrigerate the shrimp to bake the following day. 

*You can also prep the shrimp and then freeze them on a tray until frozen solid. Then store them in a freezer bag until ready to bake. Bake them straight from the frozen state, adding 3-4 more minutes to your cooking time.

Keywords: coconut shrimp, tamarind, baked