Frozen Fried Rice in the Air Fryer in Under 15 Minutes!

Sometimes, all you want is takeout for dinner. If you’ve seen the price of delivery fees lately, though, you may think twice. Instead, why not opt for this frozen fried rice in the air fryer option instead? It’s quick, easy, tasty, and best of all – no delivery or pickup required!

frozen fried rice in the air fryer recipe dinners done quick

Why This Recipe Works

Starting with frozen fried rice just makes things quicker and more convenient all around. There’s no cooking of dry rice, chopping vegetables or any preparation really required! Plus, you don’t have to wait for your takeout delivery.

The air frying method gives you nice, crispy rice with perfectly cooked vegetables and, if you’re using a meat variety, meat that comes out juicy and delicious.

air fryer chicken fried rice in a black bowl with chopsticks to the side

Speaking of, this preparation method works with any flavor of frozen fried rice, be it chicken, beef, shrimp, or vegetable.

What You’ll Need

frozen fried rice next to packaging box
  • Frozen fried rice, any brand and flavor
  • Toppings or sauce, if desired

Ingredient Tips & Notes

  • Any flavor of frozen fried rice will do. I have Korean barbecue chicken flavor, but you can grab any chicken, beef, shrimp, or vegetable option
  • Additionally, the brand of fried rice doesn’t matter. I’m using the Bibigo brand, but have made Trader Joe’s, InnovAsian, and PF Chang’s before as well
  • My topping recommendations generally include a fried egg, sliced green onions, soy sauce, or spicy mayo, but you can choose your favorites (and it’s completely optional)

How to Cook Frozen Fried Rice in Air Fryer

  1. Preheat your air fryer to 350°F
  2. Cut a piece of foil or parchment to fit in your air fryer basket to prevent the rice from falling through the grate, or place the rice in an oven-safe dish that fits in your air fryer. Make sure not to block all air flow though, or the rice will cook unevenly
cut foil to line air fryer
  1. Place frozen fried rice on the piece of foil in the preheated air fryer basket
place frozen fried rice on top of foil in air fryer basket
  1. Cook on the air fry setting for 8-10 minutes, pausing every 3 minutes to stir the rice around, until temperature reaches 165°F and desired level of browning is achieved
  2. Serve with any toppings or sides desired!
overhead view of air fried frozen fried rice in a bowl with edamame and spring rolls on the side

What to Serve With Fried Rice

  • Fried egg
  • Egg drop soup
  • Wonton soup
  • Sweet and sour soup
  • Dumplings
  • Crab rangoon
  • Egg rolls
  • Spring rolls
  • Chinese broccoli
  • Bok choy
  • Edamame
  • Stir fry
  • Tempura
  • Short ribs
  • Tofu

Try your frozen fried rice served with a side of my Frozen Tempura Shrimp in the Air Fryer, Frozen Crab Rangoon in the Air Fryer, crispy Air Fryer Frozen Spring Rolls, sesame-ginger Air Fryer Bok Choy, or learn How to Cook Bibigo Dumplings in the Air Fryer.

Recipe FAQs

Can You Cook Frozen Fried Rice in an Air Fryer?

Yes, you can cook frozen fried rice in an air fryer. You’ll just want to use foil, parchment, or an oven safe dish to prevent the rice from falling through the grate.

This method produces a crispier result than the microwave, requires less time than the oven, and needs less tending than the stove, making it a great option.

How Do You Reheat Frozen Rice in an Air Fryer?

To reheat frozen rice in an air fryer, cook for 8-12 minutes at 350°F, stirring every few minutes.

The actual time will vary slightly based on your particular air fryer, as well as if you’re reheating frozen plain, fried, or brown rice.

Can You Cook Frozen Chinese Food in an Air Fryer?

Yes, most frozen Chinese foods can be cooked in an air fryer. This includes fried rice, beef, pork, and shrimp dishes, as well as egg rolls, dumplings, rangoons, and other sides.

You can reheat frozen leftover Chinese takeout as well as premade frozen items from the grocery store.

Can You Cook Fried Rice From Frozen?

Absolutely! You can cook fried rice directly from frozen. In fact, the moisture will help to steam the rice as it defrosts during cooking, so your fried rice doesn’t dry out as much.

This works whether you’re making it in an air fryer, on the stovetop, or another method of your choice.

What’s the Recommended Temperature and Cooking Time For Frozen Fried Rice in the Air Fryer?

The recommended temperature for cooking frozen fried rice in the air fryer is 350°F (175°C). Cook for about 8-12 minutes, pausing to shake the basket or stir the rice every 3-4 minutes for even cooking.

The exact time needed will vary based on the variety of fried rice, how deep it is in the air fryer, and your specific air fryer’s brand and model. Cook to 165°F before consuming for food safety.

How Can I Prevent My Frozen Fried Rice From Becoming Too Dry in the Air Fryer?

To prevent your frozen fried rice from drying out in the air fryer, you can lightly spritz it with oil before cooking. Alternatively, you can add a small dish of water to the air fryer to maintain some moisture during cooking.

When you stop to stir it, make sure to check in on the moisture level and adjust if needed.

Can I Add Extra Ingredients to My Frozen Fried Rice in the Air Fryer, Such as Vegetables or Protein?

Yes, you can enhance your frozen fried rice by adding ingredients like vegetables or protein before air frying. Simply mix them into the frozen rice to customize your meal.

Avoid additions that will alter the cooking time required, however, such as adding raw protein into an otherwise frozen dish. Use previously cooked and frozen cubes of protein or vegetables to keep it similar.

What Are Some Common Mistakes to Avoid When Cooking Frozen Fried Rice in the Air Fryer?

Common mistakes to avoid include overcrowding the air fryer basket (which can lead to uneven cooking), forgetting to stir the rice periodically for even heat distribution, and cooking at too high a temperature, which can cause overcooking on the outside and undercooking on the inside.

Make sure to cook in batches if need be to prevent overcrowding, and check in on your rice when you stir so you can adjust as needed for other issues.

Recipe Pro Tips

  • If you want your rice a little more browned and crispy, you can add additional cooking time as needed. However, make sure to keep additional time in 1-2 minute increments so you can check frequently and don’t overcook
  • Make sure to leave a small gap between the basket and foil or parchment on each side to allow air flow to come through, or else you’ll end up with unevenly cooked rice
  • I recommend a spatula or spoon to stir the rice round during cooking. Forks may puncture the foil or paper and make a mess
close up of air fried frozen chicken fried rice in a bowl

Storage and Reheating

  • Store any leftover fried rice in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Do not refreeze after cooking once, as this will dry it out significantly
  • You can reheat leftover fried rice in the air fryer for 3-5 minutes at 350°F, microwave for about 1 minute on high, or heat in a pan on the stovetop over medium heat. In all cases, I recommend adding about 1 Tbsp of water with it to keep it from drying out too much, as it loses moisture with each subsequent heating

Additional Asian Inspired Air Fryer Recipes to Try

Final Thoughts

Making frozen fried rice in the air fryer is all the best things about takeout, but never having to leave home or pay for delivery! Whether you’re cooking up chicken, beef, shrimp, or vegetable fried rice, they’re all great thanks to the air fryer.

You’ll get the perfect crispy texture on the rice, along with juicy meat and tender veggies. It’s better than the microwave, faster than the oven, and requires less attention than the stove. All in all, you can’t go wrong!

Fried rice is a great side dish for nearly any Chinese entrée or soup, or you can serve up some other sides along with it to make it a meal all its own. This quick and easy dish is perfect for weeknight dinners and lazy weekends alike!

It would also make a great side for my honey sriracha chicken air fryer recipe!

frozen fried rice in the air fryer recipe dinners done quick

Frozen Fried Rice in Air Fryer Recipe

Start with frozen fried rice and cook it in your air fryer for a meal almost as good as takeout at home. It’s perfectly cooked in under 15 minutes!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 12 minutes
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine American, Asian, Chinese
Servings 3
Calories 270 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
  

  • 20 Ounce package frozen fried rice any brand or flavor
  • Toppings or sauce if desired (optional)

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your air fryer to 350°F
  • Cut a piece of foil or parchment to fit in your air fryer basket to prevent the rice from falling through the grate, or place the rice in an oven-safe dish that fits in your air fryer. Make sure not to block all air flow though, or the rice will cook unevenly
  • Place frozen fried rice on the piece of foil into the preheated air fryer basket
    20 Ounce package frozen fried rice
  • Cook on the air fry setting for 8-10 minutes, pausing every 3 minutes to stir the rice around, until temperature reaches 165°F and desired level of browning is achieved
  • Serve with any toppings or sides desired!
    Toppings or sauce if desired

Notes

  • Any flavor of frozen fried rice will do. I have Korean barbecue chicken flavor, but you can grab any chicken, beef, shrimp, or vegetable option
  • Additionally, the brand of fried rice doesn’t matter. I’m using the Bibigo brand here, but have made Trader Joe’s, InnovAsian, and PF Chang’s before as well
  • My topping recommendations generally include a fried egg, sliced green onions, soy sauce, or spicy mayo, but you can choose your favorites (and it’s completely optional)
  • If you want your rice a little more browned and crispy, you can add additional cooking time as needed. However, make sure to keep additional time in 1-2 minute increments so you can check frequently and don’t overcook
  • It’s important to leave a small gap between the basket and foil or parchment on each side to allow air flow to come through, or else you’ll end up with unevenly cooked rice
  • I recommend a spatula or spoon to stir the rice round during cooking. Forks may puncture the foil or paper and make a mess
  • Exact nutritional values will vary based on brand of ingredients, additional toppings or sauces, and quantity consumed, so please consider this a guideline only

Nutrition

Serving: 177gCalories: 270kcalCarbohydrates: 41gProtein: 10gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 35mgSodium: 740mgFiber: 1gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 599IUVitamin C: 13.5mgCalcium: 52mgIron: 1.08mg
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Katie Vine