Spicy Kale and Coconut Fried Rice

I created one of my old favorites to share once again because I’m jet lagged after my trip to Greece. It is nourishing and comforting, which is just what I need right now.

In fact, I like this dish so much that it served as the inspiration for the vibrant coconut fried rice with edamame on page 182 of my cookbook. You’ve truly been missing out if you haven’t tried that one yet.

This dish is a fun substitute for my go-to extra vegetable fried rice and a fairly quick evening meal. Sriracha, lime, and cilantro are among the Thai flavors in this dish.

I also included coconut flakes. Large, roasted coconut flakes have a savory flavor that makes me think of bacon. We all agree that bacon and eggs go well together, so today I’m going to give you a vegetarian, healthier alternative.

For some reason, I referred to this recipe as a stir-fry when I first shared it four years ago. It’s not a stir fry; it’s fried rice! It’s a stir-fry. Going forward

You are welcome to add whatever thinly sliced vegetables you may have in your refrigerator as well. Both chopped Brussels sprouts and red bell pepper are delicious. Carrots cut into very thin slices must also be delicious.

Also read: Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Crispy Baked Tofu with Honey-Sesame Glaze

The basic recipe for this stir fry was discovered in a fantastic cookbook that a PR representative delivered to my home. Brassicas: Cooking the World’s Healthiest Vegetables is the book’s fitting title.

Kale, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, as well as less popular items like bok choy and turnips, are all members of the cruciferous vegetable family known as brassicas. Have you ever heard of arugula being a brassica? That surprised me.

Brassicas are a worthy (and delicious) addition to your meal since they lower inflammation, boost liver detoxification, and help prevent cancer.

The spicy kale fried rice recipe from the book was fantastic, but I couldn’t resist enhancing it with some additional tastes. I was enjoying my first trial run when I thought of how delicious lime and cilantro are with kale in my burritos. Then I thought of that incredible kale and coconut flakes salad by Heidi Swanson. My second attempt was even better once I incorporated the aforementioned.


  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil or quality high-heat oil such as avocado oil, divided
  • 2 eggs, whisked together with a dash of salt
  • 2 big cloves garlic, pressed or minced
  • ¾ cup chopped green onions (about 1 bunch)
  • Optional: 1 cup chopped vegetables, like bell pepper, carrot or Brussels sprouts
  • 1 medium bunch kale (preferably Lacinato but curly green is good, too), ribs removed and leaves chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¾ cup large, unsweetened coconut flakes* (not shredded coconut)
  • 2 cups cooked and chilled brown rice**
  • 2 teaspoons reduced-sodium tamari or soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons chili garlic sauce or sriracha
  • 1 lime, halved
  • Handful fresh cilantro, for garnish


  1. Heat a large (12-inch or wider) wok, cast iron skillet or non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot enough that a drop of water sizzles on contact, add 1 teaspoon oil and swirl the pan to coat the bottom. Pour in the eggs and cook, stirring frequently, until the eggs are scrambled and lightly set. Transfer the eggs to your empty bowl. Wipe out the pan if necessary with a paper towel (be careful, it’s hot!).
  2. Add 1 tablespoon oil to the pan and add the garlic, green onions and optional additional vegetables. Cook until fragrant or until the vegetables are tender, stirring frequently, for 30 seconds or longer. Add the kale and salt. Continue to cook until the kale is wilted and tender, stirring frequently, about 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer the contents of the pan to your bowl of eggs.
  3. Add the remaining 2 teaspoons oil to the pan. Pour in the coconut flakes and cook, stirring frequently, until the flakes are lightly golden, about 30 seconds. Add the rice to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until the rice is hot, about 3 minutes.
  4. Pour the contents of the bowl back into the pan, breaking up the scrambled egg with your spatula or spoon. Once warmed, remove the pan from the heat.
  5. Add the tamari, chili garlic sauce and juice of ½ lime. Stir to combine. Taste, and if it’s not fantastic yet, add another teaspoon of tamari or a pinch of salt, as needed.
  6. Slice the remaining ½ lime into wedges, then divide the fried rice into individual bowls. Garnish with wedges of lime and a sprinkling of torn cilantro leaves, with jars of tamari, chili garlic sauce and/or red pepper flakes on the side, for those who might want more.