Nasi goreng

Nasi goreng

30 min
Nasi goreng means fried rice in Indonesian. If you replace the rice with noodles, the dish is called bami goreng.


  • Start by cooking the rice according to the instructions on the packet and leave to cool (unless you are using cooked leftover rice).
  • Mix the yoghurt and sweet chilli sauce in a bowl.
  • Cut the meat into smaller pieces. Peel and finely chop the onion. Cut the cabbage into smaller pieces.
  • Heat the oil in a large frying pan or wok. Fry the onions and vegetables until soft and shiny.
  • Add the rice, soy sauce, kecap manis, terasi, tomato paste and meat. Heat, stirring, for 4-5 minutes until everything is warmed throughout.
  • Serve with the sauce.

Nasi goreng

What is the difference between fried rice and nasi goreng?
Nasi goreng is much bigger and bolder in flavour than fried rice. It’s typically sweeter, spicier, and saltier with a unique dark brown colour.
What is nasi goreng sauce made of?
While there are many recipes for the sauce, traditional versions include kecap manis (a sweet soy sauce that can either be bought or made at home with soy sauce and palm or brown sugar) and shrimp paste. However, there are many variations to these ingredients like sweet chili, hoisin or even teriyaki sauce.
What is the difference between nasi goreng and nasi goreng kampung?
Nasi goreng kampung is a Malaysian variation of the original dish and means villager’s fried rice. The recipe traditionally uses normal soy sauce instead of the sweeter variety, and adds bird’s eye chilli, water spinach, shrimp paste, and anchovies to the list of ingredients.
How long can you keep nasi goreng?
If you used fresh rice, your leftovers would keep for up to four days if refrigerated in an airtight container. If you used leftover rice from a previous meal, you need to be more cautious, and it’s generally not recommended to store the dish for more than a day.
Can you reheat nasi goreng?
Definitely. Simply add a few tablespoons of water and reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop. Remember that rice can only be safely reheated once so any reheating after that is not recommended.


Rice (about 317 g cooked)
85 g
Fried boneless pork loins, pork chop or chicken
400 g
Yellow onion
Chinese cabbages
400 g
Rapeseed oil
1 tbsp
Spinach leaves
100 g
Japanese soy sauce
3 tbsp
Ketjap manis (Indonesian ketchup)
2 tsp
Terasi (prawn paste)
1 tsp
Tomato paste
2 tbsp
½ tsp
Black pepper
½ tsp
Turkish yoghurt
200 ml
Sweet chilli sauce
50 ml

Fried rice with an Indonesian twist

Dark brown and beautifully caramelised in colour, spicy, sweet, and smoky in flavour. Nasi goreng is one of Indonesia’s most celebrated dishes. This one is easily recreated at home using leftover rice, pork or chicken, and sweet chili sauce to recreate the sweet and spicy notes that the dish is famous for.

The origins of nasi goreng

Directly translated, nasi goreng means fried rice in Indonesian. Generally considered as the country’s national dish, it was created as a way of using leftover rice. And while the technique was originally introduced by Southern Chinese immigrants, it didn’t take long for the recipe to become quintessentially Indonesian as local ingredients like shrimp paste and kecap manis (a sweet soy sauce) were added to the list of key ingredients.

The spice and seasonings of nasi goreng

There are two key ingredients that give this dish its distinct colour and flavour. The first is kecap manis, a sweet soy sauce that has a thick, syrup-like consistency. Combined with the salty, earthy, and rich taste of terasi (Indonesian shrimp paste), it creates the perfect balance of caramelised sweet and savoury that nasi goreng is famous for.

Try these different garnishes

A traditional garnish would be a fried egg, gently placed on top of the finished dish. A sprinkling of fresh green onion, chili, and fried shallots is also a great combination that not only looks great but will add an extra freshness and crunch to your plate.

Top storage tips

Place your leftovers in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to four days (if you used a fresh batch of rice) or one day (if you used leftover rice from a previous meal).