This easy kimchi spam fried rice is one of our rice recipes, amongst Korean tuna rice, shrimp fried rice, and sha cha beef fried rice! It's perfect for you, if you enjoy bold flavors of tang, heat, and some funky kimchi flavors. Top it off with a golden fried egg for an additive weekday meal or midnight snack!
If you know us, you know that we are suckers for midnight snacks, especially those that are easy to throw together! This kimchi spam fried rice definitely checks the mark since it takes only 15 minutes!
When we make kimchi spam fried rice as a regular meal, we like to pair it side dishes like Korean volcano eggs (gyeran jjim) and sautéed garlic bok choy to complete the meal. They are so good together!
If you're looking for more Spam recipes, check out our Spam kimbap! It's one of our favorite road trip snacks and picnic foods to make.
Please scroll down to the recipe card for the ingredient quantities!
- Spam - We like to alternate between classic Spam and light sodium Spam. Both taste great! It's definitely the co-start next to kimchi.
- Fermented kimchi - It is absolutely crucial that you use fermented kimchi. That's where all the flavor and the tanginess of kimchi fried rice come from.
- Kimchi juice - This is the flavoring of the whole dish! And you'll only get kimchi juice from fermented kimchi. Fresh kimchi won't have enough juice and won't be sour enough either. Since all the flavor is in the kimchi and kimchi juice, we highly recommend using good kimchi. Use a brand that you love or make your own homemade napa cabbage kimchi!
- Yellow onion - To add some natural sweetness to the fried rice, which helps balance the tanginess of the kimchi.
- Day old white rice - Medium grain white rice is the best. It's got the perfect chew for kimchi fried rice.
- Toasted sesame oil - Although sesame oil is optional, we do recommend it. It gives the kimchi Spam fried rice that extra bit of fatty, nuttiness that goes really nice with the tangy kimchi.
- Green onion, seaweed snack, sesame seeds - These are recommended, but optional add-ons. Also, it is popular to eat kimchi spam fried rice with seaweed snack.
- Egg - Optional but highly recommended! Fried eggs or scrambled eggs add so much flavor to fried rice. You can even have both!
- Oil - Any neutral oil will do.
How to make kimchi spam fried rice
1. In a large nonstick pan over medium high heat, add a small amount of oil, about 1 to 2 teaspoons. Once the oil is hot, add the diced Spam and stir fry until the Spam are mostly golden brown.
2. Next, add the fermented kimchi and yellow onion. Stir fry for a couple of minutes until the onions look slightly translucent and the kimchi is a little drier.
3. Add the day old white rice. Toss and stir fry the rice while breaking up any large clumps.
4. Pour the kimchi juice around the pan and stir fry until the rice is heated through and everything looks evenly seasoned with kimchi juice, about 2 to 3 minutes.
5. If you want, add the sliced green onions, sesame oil, seaweed snack, and/or toasted sesame seeds to the kimchi spam fried rice. Stir fry until everything is well combined.
6. Transfer the fried rice to serving plates. Top with a fried egg and garnish with more sesame seeds. Mix everything up and enjoy on its own or eat with more seaweed snack!
- Drain the kimchi well to ensure that you're not adding too much kimchi juice to the fried rice. Too much juice can make your kimchi fried rice soggy or overly seasoned. You may even need to squeeze the kimchi!
- Use day old white rice for best texture and to prevent sogginess.
- Make sure to use fermented kimchi! It's the flavor backbone of this fried rice.
- Add an egg! Or two! Fried eggs and scrambled eggs are amazing in fried rice. If you didn't add eggs and your fried rice feels like it's missing something, try adding some eggs!
Kimchi Spam fried rice fixes
The secret to the best kimchi spam fried rice lies in good kimchi. But here are some quick fixes if your kimchi fried rice needs a boost:
- Want it spicier? Add ground cayenne to your desired level of spiciness. If you only want a little more spice, some gochugaru (Korean red pepper flakes) will do the job.
- Not salted enough. Add a small amount of soy sauce , fish sauce, or salt. Do note that fish sauce is the saltier and more pungent than soy sauce, so use with caution! Start with 1 to 2 teaspoons of soy sauce or fish sauce and adjust as needed. For salt, start with a generous pinch.
- Too sour. If your kimchi and kimchi juice is super sour, or you just simply prefer a less tangy fried rice, balance out your kimchi spam fried rice with a small amount of sugar. Start with a generous pinch.
Storage and Reheating
Let all leftover kimchi Spam fried rice cool completely before storing in an air tight containers. It will stay good in the fridge for up to 4 days or for 1 to 2 months in the freezer.
To reheat, you can microwave the fried rice until hot. Make sure to use a microwave container and loosely cover with a lid.
You can also reheat the fried rice in a pan, on the stovetop. Just heat the pan over medium to medium high heat with about a tablespoon of oil. Once the oil is hot, add the rice and stir fry until the rice is completely heated through, about 5 to 10 minutes.
Kimchi is a traditional Korean side dish made with salted and fermented vegetables. The kimchi used in this fried rice recipe is fermented napa cabbage kimchi, to be specific. You can find it at most Korean markets and some Asian markets.
Every jar of kimchi may taste different, from brand to brand. Sometimes the same brand of kimchi can taste different when you buy it at a different time! So experiment and find your favorite brand...or make your own homemade kimchi!
Cold, day old rice is the best rice for making any fried rice at home. It'll help prevent your fried rice from become soggy. Also, since this is a Korean style fried rice, we highly recommend using medium grain white rice for the best texture.
If you’ve made this recipe or any recipes from our blog, please tag us on Instagram using #twoplaidaprons! You can also tag us in your Instagram stories using @two_plaid_aprons. We would love to see your creations! It absolutely makes our day! 🥰
Easy Kimchi Spam Fried Rice
For the fried rice:
For the fried rice:
- In a large nonstick pan over medium high heat, add a small amount of oil, about 1 to 2 teaspoons. Once the oil is hot, add the diced Spam and stir fry until the Spam are mostly golden brown.
- Next, add the fermented kimchi and yellow onion. Stir fry for a couple of minutes until the onions look slightly translucent and the kimchi is a little drier.
- Add the day old white rice. Toss and stir fry the rice while breaking up any large clumps.
- Pour the kimchi juice around the pan and stir fry until the rice is heated through and everything looks evenly seasoned with kimchi juice, about 2 to 3 minutes.
- If you want, add the sliced green onions, sesame oil, seaweed snack, and/or toasted sesame seeds to the kimchi spam fried rice. Stir fry until everything is well combined.
- Transfer the fried rice to serving plates and garnish with more sesame seeds. Enjoy on its own or eat with more seaweed snack!
For the optional fried egg:
- In a nonstick pan over medium high heat, add a couple tablespoons of oil. Once the oil is shimmering and hot, crack the eggs into the oil.
- Let the eggs fry until the bottoms are set, golden brown, and crispy. If needed, spoon the hot oil over the top of the egg whites to help cook the whites while keeping the yolk runny.
- Spam - If you prefer, you can use light sodium spam or your preferred luncheon meats.
- Day old rice - We highly recommend breaking up the rice with your hand before starting the fried rice to make the cooking process easier. This way, there'll be less clumps as well.
- Kimchi & kimchi juice - Kimchi fried rice needs fermented kimchi! It gives the fried rice that iconic tang and depth in flavor. Plus, only old, fermented kimchi will give you enough juice. Also, keep in mind that good kimchi makes good kimchi fried rice! So if you have time, make a batch of your own homemade kimchi.