Veg Biryani

The Vegetable Biryani recipe is one of the best food to cook and has great flavour to savour. There are hundreds of variations of making biryani each having its own unique taste and flavor.

In a vegetarian biryani we can always add a variety of vegetables to make it more colourful and flavourful. 

We can add a mix of cauliflower, potatoes, carrots, french beans, bell pepper / capsicum, button mushrooms and peas. To make it more lavish we can even add aubergines, cabbage, broccoli, spinach and kale.

Veg Biryani recipe is light, a bit spicy and super delicious having subtle flavors of the garam masala, onions and yogurt in the vegetable chunks.

Each bite of the vegetable had the taste, flavor and aroma of the masala as well as the unique taste of that veggie.

In one word, veg biryani is heavenly. Veg biryani recipe given below is step by step recipe with some pictures to enjoy while learning the recipe as much as I enjoy making this biryani. Layering of biryani is also important which can be done by making separate layers of the rice and curry. 

We can make variations by the rice or curry is topped with fried onions also known birista. Fragrant ingredients like rose water, pandanus extract generally called kewra water and saffron infused milk, ghee or clarified butter are also sprinkled from the top. The assemble of the semi-cooked rice and gravy with the various toppings are then dum cooked. Authentically, a biryani is always slow cooked on dum to give uniqueness and originality. Veg biryani is a beautiful medley of the aromas, flavors and tastes coming from ingredients added in it.

  • Prep Time45 min
  • Cook Time45 min
  • Total Time1 hr 30 min
  • Yield3 Plates
  • Serving Size300 g
  • Energy437 cal
  • Cuisine
    • Indian
  • Course
    • Breakfast
    • Main Course
  • Cooking Method
    • Cutting
    • Boiling
    • Sauteing


  • For Soaking Rice
    • 300 grams / 1.5 cups basmati rice 
    • 1 cup water for soaking rice
    • 150 grams / 1.5 cups cauliflower florets
    • 100 grams / 2 medium potatoes / 1 cup chopped potatoes
    • 100 grams / 1 medium to large carrot / ½ cup chopped carrots
    • 50 grams/ 11 to 12 french beans/ ¼ cup chopped french beans
    • 8 to 10 white button mushrooms, sliced or chopped, (optional)
    • 50 grams capsicum / 1 small to medium capsicum / ¼ to ⅓ cup chopped bell pepper (optional)
    • ½ cup green peas – fresh or frozen
    • 115 grams onion / 1 large onion / 1 heaped cup thinly sliced onions
    • 10 grams / 2 pieces of 2 inch ginger / 1.5 tablespoons finely chopped ginger or 1 tablespoon ginger paste
    • 5 grams / 10 to 12 medium garlic cloves / 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic or ½ tablespoon garlic paste
    • 2 green chilies, slit or sliced
    For Cooking Rice
    • 3 green cardamoms
    • 1 black cardamom
    • 3 cloves3 cloves
    • 1 inch cinnamon
    • 1 tej patta (indian bay leaf)
    • 2 single mace strands
    • 5 cups water
    • ½ teaspoon salt or add as per taste
    For Biryani Curry/Gravy
    • 3 tablespoons ghee (clarified butter) – can use 3 tablespoons oil instead of ghee
    • 1 teaspoon shah jeera (caraway seeds)1 teaspoon shah jeera (caraway seeds)
    • 1 tej patta (indian bay leaf)
    • 3 green cardamoms
    • 1 black cardamon
    • 1 inch cinnamon
    • 200 grams / 1 cup curd (yogurt), whisked
    • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
    • 1 teaspoon red chilli powder or cayenne pepper or paprika
    • ½ cup water for pressure cooking and ¾ cup water if cooking in a pot
    • 2 tablespoons cashews
    • 1 tablespoons sultanas or raisins (without seeds)
    • 2 tablespoons almonds – raw or blanched, peeled and sliced
    • salt as required
    For Assembling And Layering
    • 20 grams / ⅓ cup chopped coriander leaves (cilantro)
    • 5 grams / ⅓ cup chopped mint leaves
    • 4 to 5 tablespoons milk
    • ¼ teaspoon saffron strands
    • 2 teaspoons kewra water (pandanus extract) or rose water




  • Put basmati rice in a bowl and place it under running water cautiously till the water runs clear of starch.
  • Soak the rice in 1 cup of water for 30 minutes.
  • Drain the rice after 30 minutes and keep aside.
  • When the rice is soaking prep all the veggies and ingredients. Keep aside.

Cooking Rice

  • Take a deep bottomed pan. Add water to heat it on a high flame.
  • While water gets hot, add all the salt and following spices tej patta, green cardamoms, cloves, black cardamom, cinnamon, strands of mace.
  • Bring the water to a boil. Then add the rice.
  • Gently stir the rice.
  • Do not reduce the flame
  • Continue to cook the rice.
  • The rice has to be ¾ᵗʰ cooked. The grains should have a slight bite to them when cooked. The rice must be half cooked or under cooked 
  • Drain the rice in a colander. Gently fluff and keep aside.

Making Vegetable Curry/Gravy

  • In a pressure cooker or a pan, heat ghee. Add spices – shah jeera, tej patta, green cardamoms, cloves, black cardamom and cinnamon. Sauté the whole spices till they crackle.
  • Add the onions. Stir and sauté them on a low to medium flame.
  • Add a pinch of salt to quicken the cooking process.
  • While onions are cooking, take 1 cup fresh curd (yogurt) in a bowl and whisk the curd to make it smooth.
  • Sauté the onions till they become golden brown or caramelize.
  • Add ginger-garlic paste and sliced green chillies. 
  • Sauté till the raw aroma of ginger-garlic goes away.
  • Add the turmeric and red chili powder. Stir and mix well.
  • Next add the chopped veggies. Sauté for a minute or two.
  • Lower the heat and add the whisked curd (yogurt). Stir and mix well after adding the curd and water.
  • Season with salt. Stir again.
  • Pressure cook for 1 whistle on medium flame. . Don’t overcook vegetables.
  • Warm 4 to 5 tablespoons milk and add ¼ teaspoon of saffron strands. 
  • Remove the lid after pressure subsides and check the gravy.
  • Cook until vegetables are tender and simmer the vegetable biryani gravy without the lid.
  • Add cashews, raisins and almonds to the vegetable gravy. Mix and stir. Keep aside. Do check the salt.

Assembling & Layering

  • Take a thick bottomed pan, layer half of the veg biryani gravy first.
  • Layer half of the rice.
  • Sprinkle half of the chopped coriander leaves, mint leaves and saffron milk.
  • Layer the remaining veg biryani gravy.
  • Layer the remainder of the rice. Sprinkle the remaining coriander leaves, mint leaves, saffron milk on the top.
  • Sprinkle the rose water or kewra water.

Dum Cooking Biryani

  • Seal and secure the pot with aluminium foil. Then cover with a lid. You can also seal the handi with a moist cotton cloth and then cover with the lid.
  • Take a tava/griddle/skillet and heat it on medium flame.
  • You can dum cook veg biryani for the first 15 minutes on direct low flame and then for the last 10 minutes, place the handi on the hot tawa/skillet and cook on a low flame.
  • There should be no liquids at the bottom.
  • After dum cooking, give a standing time of 5 to 7 minutes and then serve the dum biryani.

Serving Biryani

  • While serving, ensure to serve the vegetables as well as rice.
  • Serve the delicious hyderabadi veg biryani with your choice of raita, onion salad, mango pickle, roasted papad. other accompaniments for this biryani are mirchi ka salan and veg shorba gravy.


  • Rice:  Use a good quality basmati rice – preferably aged basmati rice. Soak the Sella basmati rice grains for an hour. The cooking time will also increase for this variety of basmati rice.
  • Cooking of rice: Cook the rice grains till they are ¾ᵗʰ done. Do not cook the rice all the way as they will become mushy by the time the biryani is dum cooked.
  • Spices: The lovely fragrance and aroma in a biryani comes from using whole spices. 
  • Curd (Yogurt): Use fresh yogurt that is slightly sweet and not sour. The curd or yogurt should also be made from whole milk. 
  • Biryani gravy: The curry or gravy for the biryani should have a medium to medium-thick consistency. 
  • Vegan variation: Use almond milk yogurt or cashew milk yogurt. Replace ghee or clarified butter with oil. You may use any vegetable oil or neutral tasting oil.
  • Serving Suggestions: Biryani is generally accompanied with a raita or yogurt dip. The raita can be a simple onion raita or made with a mix of onion, tomatoes and cucumber. It can be served with mirchi ka salan or green chilli curry) and raita. 
  • 4 servings per container
  • Serving Size300 g
  • Amount per serving
  • Calories437
  • % Daily Value*
  • Total Fat15 g19.23%
  • Saturated Fat7 g35%
  • Trans Fat0 g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat1 g
  • Monounsaturated Fat2 g
  • Cholesterol27 mg9%
  • Sodium836 mg36.35%
  • Total Carbohydrate67 g24.36%
  • Dietary Fiber7 g25%
  • Total Sugars10 g
  • Protein12 g24%
  • Vitamin D (Cholecalciferol)1 IU0.13%
  • Calcium152 mg11.69%
  • Potassium637 mg13.55%
  • Vitamin E (Tocopherol)1 IU3.03%
  • Vitamin K17 mcg14.17%
  • Vitamin B1 (Thiamin)1 mg83.33%
  • Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)1 mg76.92%
  • Vitamin B3 (Niacin)3 mg18.75%
  • Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)1 mg58.82%
  • Vitamin B12 (Cobalamine)1 mcg41.67%
  • Phosphorus250 mg20%
  • Magnesium78 mg18.57%
  • Zinc2 mg18.18%