Cambodian Pineapple Rice

Pineapple Rice

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Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Total: 25 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
666 Calories
23g Fat
74g Carbs
42g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 666
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 23g 29%
Saturated Fat 3g 17%
Cholesterol 261mg 87%
Sodium 2018mg 88%
Total Carbohydrate 74g 27%
Dietary Fiber 3g 12%
Total Sugars 18g
Protein 42g
Vitamin C 53mg 267%
Calcium 156mg 12%
Iron 4mg 23%
Potassium 752mg 16%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Say "pineapple rice with chicken" and most people will say, "Thai." They'd probably follow that up with "Delicious!" And they'd be correct on both counts. But, to be more accurate, pineapple rice, with chicken or seafood, is also a Cambodian dish. It just wouldn't be fair to let the Thais get all the credit. 

What Is It?

What is this pineapple rice dish exactly? It's fried rice, pure and simple. But, to the basic fried rice, chunks of fresh pineapple are added. The pineapple chunks are cut from the pineapple flesh that is scooped out of a halved pineapple. The juices that get squeezed out during the scooping process are not thrown out but, along with the diced pineapple flesh, added to the rice as well. Because there is chile in the dish, the sweet pineapple chunks and juice get mixed with the heat of the chiles creating a delicious balance.

Chicken or Shrimp

Which is best for pineapple fried rice: chicken or shrimp? Both are good. Neither one is "better," but your choice will affect the flavor of the cooked dish, naturally. There is even no need to limit the choice between chicken and shrimp. Go for squid or diced fish fillets. Catfish fillet is an especially inspired choice. So, treat the "400 grams shelled shrimps" in the ingredients list below as something that can be substituted with chicken, squid, or fish.

As a final note, this is a stir-fried dish. Stir-frying requires extremely high heat during all stages of cooking.


  • 1 whole pineapple

  • 2 to 3 tablespoons oil

  • 1 pound shrimp, shelled

  • Salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic

  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger

  • 1 teaspoon finely sliced bird's eye chiles

  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped shallots

  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped tomatoes

  • 1/3 cup roughly chopped bell pepper

  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce, plus more to taste

  • 2 slices ham, cut into strips

  • 3 to 4 cups cooked rice, day old

  • 1 cup pineapple chunks

  • 1/2 cup whole cashews, toasted

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Place the pineapple on a cutting board. Holding it securely with one hand, cut it lengthwise into halves. Scoop out the flesh from both halves, leaving about an inch of flesh attached to the skin.

  3. Take the pineapple flesh and dice. Measure a cup; reserve the rest for another dish or for munching.

  4. Save any juices that drip off.

  5. Heat the cooking oil in a wok or frying pan. Add the shrimps. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Stir-fry just until the shrimps change color. Scoop out and transfer to a bowl. Set aside.

  6. Add the garlic, ginger, chile, shallots, tomatoes and bell peppers to the hot oil. Drizzle in about a tablespoonful of fish sauce and stir-fry for half a minute. Add the ham and continue stir-frying for another half a minute.

  7. Add the rice to the vegetables and ham. Drizzle in more fish sauce and the pineapple juice. Stir-fry for a minute. 

  8. Finally, add the pineapple chunks, shrimps and cashew nuts. Continue stir-frying for another minute. Taste the rice, adjust the seasonings if needed.

  9. Ladle the rice into the hollowed pineapple halves. Sprinkle with scallions. Serve at once.

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