Vegetarian Nasi Goreng

Top view of vegetarian Nasi goreng with fried egg

Nasi Goreng – basically Indonesian fried rice – is a really delicious dish which isn’t as popular as I think it should be. It’s easy to make and seriously tasty. This is my take – a vegetarian Nasi Goreng. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

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There are certain things that make a Nasi Goreng. One of those is kecap manis – a sweet soy sauce. Now, unfortunately my local supermarkets have not quite reached the multicultural 21st century and did not have any – nor did I have time to jump online – so I have made this with sugar in the spice paste and a little normal soy sauce. If you have kecap manis, omit the sugar from the spice paste and use it in place of the soy. If you don’t have it, well – here’s the recipe for you!

Nasi Goreng is traditionally served with a fried egg on top. Cook it simply and let that runny egg drip into the rice – yum!

This is a vegetarian version – Nasi Goreng often has meat or fish and dried shrimp. I’ve left those out to make it deliciously meat free.

Vegetarian Nasi Goreng – The Ingredients

  • Peanuts – add a delicious nutty taste to the spice paste.
  • Shallot – I used banana shallot but you can use any type.
  • Garlic – use as much as you like! Six large cloves gave this a whack of flavour.
  • Ginger – fresh ginger adds a hint of spice.
  • Red chilli – you can make this as spicy or as mild as you like. I used one red chilli to add just a little warmth (my chillies were quite mild). Leave out if you don’t want that chilli hum.
  • Turmeric – ground turmeric gives this dish colour and warmth.
  • Nutmeg – ground nutmeg is an incredible flavour in this dish – it runs underneath everything and lifts it up. Delicious!
  • Palm sugar – to add sweetness. As mentioned above, omit this if you are using kecap manis.
  • Olive oil – to bind the spice paste.
  • Cooked rice – as with any other fried rice recipe, this is made with cooked rice. You could use those packets of cooked white rice from the supermarket. Any white rice will do.
  • Carrot – one large carrot is all you need.
  • Mushrooms – chestnut mushrooms add a nice bit of texture to this nasi goreng.
  • Peas – frozen peas are an awesome staple to have in the freezer and bring sweetness to this dish.
  • Eggs – perfectly fried eggs with a runny yolk make this nasi goreng so delicious! Use fresh eggs!
  • Prawn crackers – a big handful of prawn crackers to scoop up that rice are a necessity. Make sure your prawn crackers are vegetarian friendly (lots are).

Cooking the Recipe

This is a simple recipe to cook for your dinner. Here are some tips to make it a success:

  • Be careful not to overcook the spice paste. Nobody likes the taste of burnt garlic! If it starts cooking too fiercely, just turn the heat down.
  • The peas only need a few minutes of cooking time. Put them in right at the end to make sure they keep their texture.
  • Frying the egg – put your oil in a nonstick frying pan on a medium-high heat and leave for a minute. Crack your egg in, and leave for two minutes, letting it crisp and bubble up. Then turn the heat down really low and put a lid over the frying pan (it doesn’t need to fit fully). Leave for 3-4 more minutes and you’ll get the most perfectly runny yolk with a fully cooked white.

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Top view of vegetarian Nasi goreng with fried egg

Vegetarian Nasi Goreng

Save This Recipe
Harriet Young
Delicious vegetarian Indonesian style fried rice
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indonesian
Servings 4 people


Spice paste

  • 25 g peanuts
  • 1 banana shallot
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 25 g ginger
  • 1 red chilli
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp palm sugar
  • 2 tbsp olive oil


  • 500 g cooked rice
  • 1 tsp tomato puree
  • 1 carrot
  • 150 g chestnut mushrooms
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 150 g frozen peas
  • 4 eggs
  • Prawn crackers to serve


  • Put all of the ingredients for the paste (after peeling the ginger, garlic and shallot) into a food processor and whiz until they make a smoothish paste.
  • Put the paste into a large pan and heat for 30 seconds, until it becomes fragrant.
  • Add the cooked rice, tomato puree, sliced carrot, chopped mushrooms and soy sauce. Fry for 5 minutes, stirring often, then add 100ml water.
  • Put a lid on the pan and cook on a low heat for 10 minutes.
  • Add the peas to the rice and heat through.
  • Fry the eggs in a separate pan (see tips above). Season each egg with salt and pepper.
  • To serve, top a generous portion of the rice with the shallots and a fried egg, and serve with the prawn crackers on the side.
Keyword rice, vegetarian

5 responses to “Vegetarian Nasi Goreng”

  1. 5 stars
    This is a delicious and satisfying dish. The combination of fresh vegetables and flavorful spices makes for a perfect meat-free meal.

  2. 5 stars
    We loved this dish so much, and this homemade recipe is even better! Brings so many beautiful memories! Thank you!

  3. 5 stars
    I often enjoy fried eggs with white rice, but this Nasi Goreng is next level delicious!!!

  4. 5 stars
    Yum! I love Nasi Goreng. Yours looks amazing with all those spices and especially the fried egg on top.

  5. 5 stars
    I made this nasi goreng with dinner last night and it was delicious! The perfect side dish for any meal!

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Hi there!

I’m Harriet, writer and cook, and I’m so pleased to have you here! I love nothing more than cooking delicious food and sharing it with the world. You can find out more about me here.

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