Vegan Spicy Thai Basil Fried Rice With Chicken-Style Seitan

| 08/23/2014 | Reply

Fried rice — Thai, Indian and Chinese style — were staples in our household. Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area meant being surrounded by some of the finest restaurants in the nation. Eating the food of every culture in the world, I’ve developed quite the eclectic palate. I love all kinds of food – Vietnamese, Japanese, Indian, Schezwan, Italian, Spanish, French, Mexican, Thai, Cuban, Puerto Rican, and Korean are just a few that roll of the top of my head.

The only problem is that sometimes its a challenge to find what you want or fulfill a taste you have without meat. That’s when it becomes time to get in the kitchen and make the magic happen.

This morning I woke up with a taste for some spicy Thai basil fried rice, a dish I would enjoy back in the day with ground chicken. Plenty of hot Thai peppers and loaded with flavorful Thai basil, I had a need for that taste. I needed to have my mouth set afire.

A quick lunch with friends provided me with the opportunity inspect the dish with an eye for reproducing Thai basil fried rice instead of gobbling it down. I talked to the waitress who gave me the basic ingredients (most of which I already had at the crib). So I stopped at the Asian market on my way home and picked up Thai peppers, long beans, Thai basil, and a red bell pepper (since I used all mine in tofu scrambles). When I got home I pulled out my ingredients, and rolled up my sleeves.

This is the end result! Isn’t it beautiful? And the taste was fabulous. It would have been slightly darker and I would have had more sauce, but as I was dumping it into the pan I spilled quite a bit on the stove and floor. Oh well.

Vegan Spicy Thai Basil Fried Rice With Chicken Seitan

Here is what I started with. What isn’t pictured: carrot chunks and the red bell pepper strips.

Preparing to make spicy vegan Thai Basil Fried Rice

Not pictured, carrot chunks and red pepper strips.

This recipe for Thai Basil Fried Rice whips up quickly if you start with leftover rice. Since I didn’t have any I cooked my rice about 3:00 p.m. I used Jasmine rice because I was all out of Basmati. The texture of Jasmine rice is different in that it cooks up a bit stickier, but feel free to use whatever you have on hand – even plain long-grain white or brown rice.

As the seitan goes, feel free to substitute soy curls marinated in not-chicken broth, or commercial chick’un strips available at your local grocers. I’ve used all of these options at one time or another, and they all work very well.

Once rice has finished cooking, let it sit in the pot with the top on to steam a little bit (maybe 5 minutes), then fluff it with a fork and remove from the pan onto a rimmed baking sheet. Spread it out so that it will cool quickly. I stuck my pan in the refrigerator for about two hours and took it out when I started getting hungry.

While waiting for the cooked rice to cool, I chopped up the vegetables and put them in separate containers for fast assembly when I started cooking (as seen above). If you don’t have a wok, that’s fine – a large non-stick skillet works great.

Vegan Spicy Thai Basil Fried Rice with Chicken Seitan

I used two chiles (wanted to use three but people around here are sissies and tender-mouthed!) Two gave it a nice punch, enough for you to take notice without being overly hot.  I also made a vegan fish sauce which I found here to make the flavor as authentic as possible, but you could just as easily buy some at the Asian market, or leave it out altogether… this recipe for vegan Thai Basil Fried Rice is fine just as it is.

Vegan Spicy Thai Basil Fried Rice with Chick'n Seitan
Created by:
Recipe Type: Entrees
Cuisine: Vegan
Number Servings: 2
Prep Time:
Cook Time:
Total Time:
Try this fabulous version of spicy Thai basil fried rice which uses chicken style seitan in place of ground chicken, and vegan oyster and fish sauces in place of the shellfish-based versions. This is just one of the dozens of exciting new recipes featured in WHY VEGAN IS THE NEW BLACK, a cookbook for transitioning and new vegans. Find out more information at
What You Need
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 red and 1 green Thai chile pepper, sliced fine
  • ½ cup chicken style seitan, cut into ¼" chunks
  • ⅓ cup onion, sliced and cut into 1" pieces
  • ⅓ cup Chinese long beans, cut into 1" pieces
  • ¼ cup baby carrots, cut into quarters lengthwise, then into small pieces
  • ¼ cup red bell pepper, chopped small
  • ⅔ cup Thai basil leaves, sliced
  • 1 Tablespoon vegan oyster sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon vegan fish sauce (or commercial version)
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons double black thick soy sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon low-sodium Tamari
  • 2 Tablespoons water
  • 2-1/2 cups previously cooked Basmati or Jasmine rice, cooled or cold from refrigerator
  • 2 Tablespoons peanut or grapeseed oil
How to Do It
  1. Prepare the ingredients, readying them in individual containers. Put the sauces in one container.
  2. Heat 2 Tablespoons oil in large heavy non-stick skillet over medium heat until hot. Add garlic and chopped chiles and stir fry rapidly until garlic begins to turn brown. Make sure you do not burn it.
  3. Add the chopped seitan and stir fry about 60 seconds. Add the long beans, carrots and red bell peppers. Stir to mix. Add in the four blended sauces and water.
  4. Continue stir frying another minute or two, then add the onion and stir fry until they are slightly limp.
  5. Make sure there are no clumps in your rice, then add it to the sauce mix and flip around with a spatula to mix everything together. Add another Tablespoon of water if needed.
  6. Add the basil and remove pan from heat. Flip mixture 5-6 more times then serve.

Why Vegan is the New Black by Deborrah Cooper

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Category: Entrees, Light Meals

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