Immune Booster

Soothing Stir-Fried Holy Basil Leaves


“Holy Basil Fried Rice” was developed from the more common Stir-Fried Holy Basil, which sees the meat and herbs stir-fried separately before being served over rice. Holy Basil is believed to have begun its rise to popularity in Thailand in the era of King Rama VII, when it was brought here by settling Chinese. However, there are references to the herb that go further back than that though, with mention of “Holy Basil, a fine smelling herb” in the La Loubert Archives, made during the reign of King Narai. The dish really took off around 1957, adapted from a Chinese recipe featuring soybean paste fried with garlic and added to meat.

Nowadays, it is made in a number of ways, with some cooks choosing to add shiitake mushrooms, yardlong beans or even carrots. The dish is both convenient and tasty, so its unwavering popularity is really no surprise.

Health Benefits

‘Soothing Stir-Fried Holy Basil Leaves’
Holy Basil Fried Rice gives a fragrant strong spicy aroma from holy basil, creating a unique menu that is another staple in Thai kitchens.

  • ‘Holy basil’ contains an important substance called carvacrol that helps relieve cold symptoms. and is effective against influenza virus.*
  • ‘Chili’, capsaicin, gives a spicy flavor. Helps relieve cold symptoms and reduces mucus and phlegm.**
  • ‘Garlic’ enhances innate and adaptive immune function.***


  • minced pork 180 gr
  • holy basil 10 gr
  • large chili (sliced) 10 gr
  • bird’s eye chilli 10 gr
  • garlic (chopped) 15 gr
  • fish sauce 12 gr
  • soy sauce 12 gr
  • oyster sauce 5 gr
  • black soy sauce 2 gr
  • sugar 2 gr
  • white pepper 0.5 gr


Pick off the holy basil leaves and finely chop the garlic and bird’s eye chili.

Sautee the garlic and chili until they release an aroma. Add the minced pork and stir-fry until cooked and then flavour with soy sauce, fish sauce, oyster sauce, sugar and pepper.

Add the holy basil leaves and stir-fry until they are mixed consistently.

Garnish with sliced chili and serve.

* Jadhav P, et al. Assessment of potency of PC-complexed Ocimum sanctum methanol extract in embryonated eggs against Influenza virus (H1N1). Pharmacognosy Magazine. 2014; 10(Suppl 1): S86–S91
** vonne D., Ofelia G., Guillermo O., José P., & Tzayhrí G. (2014). Determination of Capsaicin, Ascorbic Acid, Total Phenolic Compounds and Antioxidant Activity of Capsicum annuum L. var. serrano by Mid Infrared Spectroscopy (Mid-FTIR) and Chemometric Analysis. Journal of the Korean Society for Applied Biological Chemistry, 57(1): 133-142.
*** Moutia M, et al. Review Article In Vitro and In Vivo Immunomodulatory Activities of Allium sativum L. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2018; Article ID 4984659.