Are you a fan of Tom Yum Soup? If so, you will love this easy Thai Tom Yum Fried Rice using this easy Tom Yum paste recipe. This recipe uses roasted meat like rotisserie chicken, leftover turkey meat, roasted duck, pork, or ham. And it’s so quick and easy. You can have this delicious fried rice on the table in 20 minutes!
Initially, I had called for leftover turkey meat for this Tom Yum fried rice recipe. After a few questions and realizing how silly it was to limit the deliciousness to only once a year, I adapted the recipe to include roasted meat like chicken, pork, ham, or duck. All are excellent options and allow you to make this delicious fried rice all year round!
What is Tom Yum?
Tom Yum is a famous Thai sour soup using fresh ingredients like lemongrass, galangal, kaffir lime leaves, cilantro, tomatoes, and mushrooms cooked with any protein your choice adds to the soup. Thai dish that uses fresh herbs, tamarind or lime juice, fish sauce, and roasted chili paste to add a dynamic flavor profile.
The Spicy flavors of Thai Tom Yum soup come from using Thai chili paste, Nam Prik Pao. The paste, combined with tamarind juice and fish sauce, adds bold and delicious flavors that bring a delightful flavor explosion to your mouth. Make your own homemade Tom Yum paste using my recipe here!
We will use the same flavor profile for this recipe in the Tom Yum soup. Instead of soup, we will use the instant paste for a stir-fried rice version, giving it a unique twist to the classic sour soup.
Why this Recipe Works
- Use leftover meat like roasted chicken, pork, ham, or duck. Using already-cooked meat is the easiest way to cheat for a fast dinner! This a great recipe for your busy weekdays!
- This Tom Yum recipe uses leftover Thanksgiving turkey meat. Since the turkey is already cooked, you will shave off cooking time by at least 10 minutes, making this dish very quick and easy to throw together.
- The recipes call for a pre-made Tom Yum paste. Not only is this saving you a ton of time making the paste yourself, but it’s two recipes in one. Traditional Tom Yum calls for chili paste, another recipe you must make without using the paste.
- It's an easy stir-fry dish! The recipe is quick and fast. You can throw it together in about 20 minutes.
- You can also use rotisserie chicken meat if you don’t typically eat turkey outside of Thanksgiving, allowing you to make this dish all year!
- Eat like a local! Tom Yum fried rice is a lesser-known dish in Thai restaurants in the United States, but it’s very popular with locals who know this dish!
What Goes into Tom Yum Fried Rice?
Here is the ingredient list for this delicious Tom Yum fried rice recipe, along with a few notes on these specific ingredients that you might find helpful.
- Tom Yum paste. This is the star of the show that binds all the ingredients together into a sour, salty, and umami flavor. I used the Aroy D brand but have used the Mae Sri brand and loved it.
- Rice. Use old rice, meaning leftover steamed white rice cooked a day or two before, for best results. There's less moisture in the day-old rice, making fried rice less soggy when cooked.
- Roasted meat. My original recipe called for leftover Thanksgiving meat. But you can use any roasted meat for this recipe!
- Kaffir lime leaves. Also called “Makrut” in Thai, you can find these leaves in the frozen section of the Asian market. You will need about 3-4 leaves for this recipe, don’t skip out on this amazing taste and nutritious ingredient if you can help it.
- Shallots. You can substitute sweet purple or yellow onion if shallots are unavailable.
- Tomatoes. Use younger firm tomatoes like Roma, Compari, or even some green tomatoes! Use using cherry tomatoes, use young fresh tomatoes. Remove the seeds of the tomatoes before cooking.
- Mushrooms. Use button, oyster, Portello, morelle, or king trumpet mushrooms.
- Fish sauce. Soy sauce is ok as a substitute, but it will alter the flavors slightly.
- Eggs. The fried eggs help buffer the spicy flavors of the Thai chilies used in the recipe. For extra protein, add another sunny-side-up fried egg on the side to help temper the spicy flavors of the fried rice.
- Kaffir lime leaves. The kaffir lime leaves add a distinct flavor to this recipe, don't skip out!
- Shallot and garlic. These two ingredients add an incredible aroma to the fried rice. Red or white onions are good substitutes.
- Sugar. Add sugar to round off the salty, sour, and spicy flavors. White, brown, or palm sugar works great.
- Green onions or spring onions. Use some for garnishing for a beautiful presentation. (:
How to Make Tom Yum Fried Rice with Turkey
Check out the step-by-step photos below to make this delicious Tom Yum fried rice using leftover meat. You can use rotisserie chicken, roasted pork, or ham too! It's a very flexible fried rice dish.
Step 1. Heat a wok or large skillet on medium-high heat and wait until it’s warm before adding oil. Add the garlic and shallot/onion, stir, and let cook for 1 minute. Use avocado, coconut, canola, or vegetable oil.
Step 2. Move the garlic and shallot slightly to the side of the wok, add the eggs, and scramble lightly for 1 minute. Do not stir it too often; you want to leave large chunks of eggs intact.
Step 3. Add the turkey and stir. Fry everything in the wok together for 1 minute.
Step 4. Add the Tom Yum paste, break up the chunks, and stir well with the food in the wok. Turn the temperature to medium heat if the paste cooks too fast. Add 1-2 tablespoons of water if the pan looks too dry.
Step 5. Add the mushroom, stir, and cook for 1 minute, just enough to let everything lightly cook together before adding more ingredients.
Step 6. Add the rice, fish sauce, lime juice, and sugar and stir for 2-3 minutes. Break up the rice chunks well and spread everything evenly on the work surface to let out the moisture so the fried rice won't get too mushy.
Step 7. Turn the heat to high, and add the tomato and green onions, kaffir lime leaves, and cilantro. Stir well together, and cook for 1 minute.
Step 8. Give it one last stir before turning the heat off, and place the fried rice on a serving plate. Seasoned with more fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, and spicy chilis! Enjoy your new favorite stir-fry!
For garnishing. Use sliced cucumbers, more sliced tomatoes, thinly sliced bell peppers, julienned kaffir lime leaves, fresh cilantro leaves, lime wedges, fresh lemon juice, and minced Thai chilis.
Helpful Kitchen Notes
- Rice is the main ingredient in this recipe. Use leftover rice for the best result. Fresh rice has too much moisture when used for fried rice. The rice will turn soggy and not as tasty.
- You can use rice 2-3 days old, but if you have freshly cooked rice, let it sit and dry out on a plate at room temperature for at least 1 hour to let the moisture escape. You can prepare the other ingredients while this is going on.
- Tom Yum Paste. This recipe uses store-bought instant paste found at Asian supermarkets. Aroy D is my favorite brand, but if it's unavailable, use any brand you can find and adjust the flavors to your taste buds with lime juice, fish sauce, and sugar at the end of your cooking.
- Make your own delicious Tom Yum paste for an even more aromatic, fresh, and healthy using this Authentic Tom Yum paste recipe.
- Roasted meat. You only need 6 oz of roasted meat. You can use dark or white meat for this, and it’s ok to leave some of the skin on top if you like the skin. The skin adds extra flavor. Yum!
More Tom Yum recipes
Can't get enough of this famous Thai Tom Yum soup? Make this authentic homemade Thai Tom Yum paste using two easy methods. Then make this easy chicken tom yum soup or this Instant Pot shrimp Tom Yum soup. For a meatless meal, try this easy Thai fried rice recipe here. All have incredible flavors you'll love!
If you love fried rice, try this herbaceous Thai green curry fried rice, it's bold, flavorful, and simply delicious! This is light and refreshing Thai basil fried rice, tasty with a pop of basil! Also, try Authentic Thai shrimp fried rice and my popular pineapple fried rice with shrimp recipe for light and citrusy fried rice! Both have incredible flavors you'll love!
Adaptation of the Tom Yum fried rice recipe
- Add your fresh vegetables to the Tom Yum fried rice. The best vegetables to use are bell peppers. pea pods, onions, Chinese broccoli, baby corn, oyster, king trumpet, or portabello mushrooms.
- Use large shrimp, scallops, crab meat, or squid for a seafood version.
- Use Tofu, tempeh, or add all vegetables to make it a vegetarian version. Do know that most Thai chili paste has a small amount of shrimp paste.
Frequently Asked Questions
Tom Yum soup is typically a sour, salty, and spicy soup. The Tom Yum fried rice has the same flavors but is less intense because the rice and eggs absorb those flavors. However, if you want more spiciness added to your fried rice, you can jazz up the taste more with fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, and chilis.
You should remove the seed of the tomato as best you can before adding the tomato to the stir-fried to ensure that the fried rice won’t get too soggy from the juice of the tomato. Tomato options for this recipe are Roma and the tomatoes on the vine. Those tomatoes are firmer and hold up better in a stir-fried dish.
You can use any mushroom you prefer for this recipe. I used button mushrooms because they’re fast and easy; you can find them at most grocery stores.
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- Tom Yum soup recipe with chicken
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