Margarita's International Recipes


Nasi Goreng

Vegan Indonesian Fried Rice

Nasi Goreng

Nasi Goreng, a dish of rice cooked with a spice mix and sweet soy sauce, is one of Indonesia's most popular dishes, both at home and abroad. There are lots of variations, of course, and the one I used was the most basic. It had, however, the most important ingredients: rice, a spice paste and kecap manis. I made the latter myself, but simply boiling together regular soy sauce and brown sugar and forgoing all the other spices.

You can add all sorts of toppings to this dish. Fried eggs, sliced cucumbers tomatoes or carrots, lightly blanched veggies, cooked meats, seafood or fake meats, crispy shallots and salted peanuts are all popular choices. As this was for my vegan daughter, I went with scrambled vegan eggs and cooked fake chicken. She was quite pleased with it.


Nasi Goreng


  • 2 small shallots, peeled and sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
  • 2 tsp shrimp paste or vegan alternative*
  • 1/2 tsp sambar oelek or to taste
  • 3 Tbsp peanut or vegetable oil, divided
  • 2 cups cooked and cooled jasmine, basmati or another long-grain rice
  • 2 Tbsp kecap manis
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • Toppings of your choice

*Substitute with a vegan shrimp paste, fermented bean paste, miso paste, marmite or vegan stir fry sauce. I didn't have any, so I used Maggi sauce.


Using a food processor or a blender, process together the shallots, garlic cloves, shrimp paste or substitute, sambar oelek and 1 Tbsp oil until you get a smooth paste. Set aside.

Heat 2 Tbsp of oil in a wok or frying pan over high heat. Add the spice paste and cook for one minute.

Gradually add the rice, breaking up clumps as you go and mixing it with the spice sauce. Stir fry until heated through. Stir in the kecap manis and soy sauce. Stir fry for another minute then taste and adjust seasoning. Serve with optional toppings on top.

Adapted from a recipe at The Guardian

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