When I was looking for a healthier comfort food option that packed in veggies but still hit a savoury note I decided a mash-up of the classic fried recipe was the way to go. This tofu fried rice recipe is a simple way to use up leftover rice and has a Lacto-Ovo-veggie slant.
USA Rice is a pantry and diet staple for many athletes as it is carbohydrate-packed, affordable and easy on the gut during exercise. Those athletes with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity also like it because it is a gluten-free carb option. As such, rice is a diet staple for many activity-seekers.
We are amidst an incredible time of opportunity for learning new cooking skills and establishing better kitchen routines because we have more time. In this time of self-isolation, many of us have rediscovered our inner chef. It’s the perfect time to elevate our usual rice dishes.
Key Nutrients for Mind and Body
Rice is an excellent source of carbohydrates, making it a fabulous pre- and post-workout choice for boosting energy and refuelling stores. Similar to other grains, US-grown rice also contributes a source of protein providing 2 g per half-cup portion and complements other plant-based protein sources in a vegetarian diet. Combine rice with beans, for example, to offer a full complement of the essential amino acids, or building blocks of protein, required for good health.
Choose white rice before an exercise session to ensure a well-tolerated lower fibre choice for vigorous activity. And, choose brown rice afterwards to contribute a great source of insoluble fibre to your diet. Another bonus? Brown rice is a source of potassium, magnesium, vitamin B6, and iron. Potassium and magnesium are electrolytes essential to optimal muscular function, vitamin B6 aids in the processing of amino acids, and iron is a critical component of haemoglobin which carries oxygen in the blood.
Tasty Ovo-Vegetarian Rice Recipe
I love this tofu fried rice dish because it is a crowd-pleaser, and it incorporates a nice combo of veggies and heart-healthy protein. For athletes who are tofu-shy, I encourage you to give it a go. You’ll be surprised how tasty it is when marinated and grilled. But you can also feel free to substitute in chicken or beef if you would prefer.
For those who are worried about their waistline, carbohydrate-rich foods are a healthy option. At 100-115 Calories per half-cup serving rice provides a reasonable energy allotment. Also, on its own, it is low in both fat and sodium. In this dish, I have added oil and soy sauce. You may want to play with these quantities if you follow a fat or sodium-reduced diet. Though, many endurance athletes, require a reasonable amount of both of these nutrients for good health and performance.
Grilled Tofu Fried Rice
- 3 cups US-grown cooked rice Use leftover rice for best results. I have used white rice but brown will boost your fibre.
- 1 package extra firm tofu drained and cut into 1/2 inch thick slabs
- 1 head broccoli (about 155 g) chopped into small pieces
- 2 medium carrots peeled and finely chopped
- 1 green onion, green stalk and white bulb chopped
- 2 tsp fresh ginger peeled and minced
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- 2 tsp vegetable oil
- 1 egg beaten
- 5 radishes sliced for garnish (optional)
- 2 tsp vegetable oil
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 2 tbsp sodium-reduced soy sauce or tamari for gluten-free diets
- 2 tbsp orange juice
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp Hoison sauce
- 1 garlic clove minced
- Prepare tofu marinade. Slice tofu into 1/2-inch thick blocks and place in a shallow dish. Pour marinade over tofu. Set aside to marinate while you chop and prepare the other ingredients.
- Transfer tofu to an indoor or outdoor grill. Save the extra marinade for later. Grill until browned on both sides. About 3-5 minutes per side. Once cooked, remove from grill, chop into 1/2-inch cubes and set aside.
- Pour 1 tsp of the vegetable oil in a non-stick wok or saucepan. Heat on high. Add the eggs to the pan and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan. Push sides of the egg in to allow runny parts to cook. Once the egg sets pour it onto a cutting board and cut it into small pieces. Wipe out the pan to clean before proceeding.
- Pour 1 tsp of vegetable oil into the saucepan. Add the scallions, broccoli, and carrots. Sautée until they start to become tender. About 8-10 minutes.
- Add the garlic and ginger. Sautée for an additional 1 to 2 minutes.
- Add the rice and the leftover tofu marinade and stir. Add the cubed tofu and eggs. Mix and serve immediately topped with thinly sliced radishes, green onions and a splash of soy sauce.
Don’t forget to get creative and come up with your own rice dishes. Costing only ten cents per half-cup portion, rice is an affordable pantry staple. For more information and inspiration about how you can cook rice check out the Think Rice Campaign which features five different ways, rice can be enjoyed in five different days. For example, cook extra rice and use it for a quick pre-workout high carb snack or re-purpose the rice for another recipe. Rice pudding makes a delicious dessert option.
Nutrition planning is integral to achieve your optimal athletic performance. Gazelle Nutrition Lab delivers one-on-one or group nutritional counselling and consulting to both recreational and high-performance athletes. In addition, our Gazelle Recipe Page is a free resource for healthy recipes and health tips. Have questions? We’d love to hear from you! Get in touch!