Basics and sides

Bagoong kanin

In the canon of deadly-simple Filipino dishes that use up leftover rice, there are two recipes that really stand out. The first is sinangag that just adds garlic to day-old rice. Bagoong rice is nearly as simple, and adds the sautéed shrimp paste so beloved of Filipinos and so misunderstood by virtually everyone else.

I have been making bagoong rice for decades, and prefer mine with my own scrambled eggs, which are essentially a sliced omelette.

Bagoong kanin

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By Ann Marie Eastmond Serves: 4
Cooking Time: 5 mins


  • 2 tbsp groundnut oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 small red onion (or half a large one), finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp sautéed shrimp paste (e.g. Dagupan guisado bagoong)
  • 720g (4 USA cups) of day-old cooked rice
  • 1 tbsp liquid seasoning (e.g. Knorr or Maggi)
  • Pinch sea salt
  • 2 spring onions, chopped



Heat the oil in a wok. Quickly fry the garlic and onion, but take care not to burn the garlic. Add the rice and toss in the garlicky oil. Add the shrimp paste and turn through.


Stir in the rice, break up any lumps and combine with the flavourings. Add the liquid seasoning and cook on high for about 3 mins.


Season to taste with salt. Serve with the spring onions scattered over.


A pinch of MSG goes not go amiss in this dish. Add it along with the salt.

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