Easy Vegetable Biryani

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Vegetable Biryani is a bold and flavorful Indian rice dish with bell peppers, peas, carrots and potatoes in a spiced rice dish made with turmeric, garam masala and other warm spices.

We’re working through a list of our favorite Indian recipes including Indian Butter Chicken and Easy Chicken Tikka Masala and it felt only right the next recipe shared would be a biryani dish which is amazing served with Cucumber Raita.

Vegetable Biryani
 Easy Vegetable Biryani

Biryani has always been a recipe I’ve been intimidated to make even though it looks like it would be a recipe that’s easier to make than most Indian dishes. The rice is always so heavily flavored I worry about how long to cook it for and how the final combination of vegetables and rice will cook together so both are perfectly tender and soft at the same time.

When I started cooking with my family friend who is well versed in Indian cooking my first request was chicken biryani (coming soon). We discussed spices, I mentioned I’d only made biryani with a spice packet before, never mixing single spices together to put together that spicy, bold, flavorful rice on my own.

This biryani is easier than most, no whole spices being toasted and ground. No red curry paste or ginger garlic pastes are needed. The resulting flavors are incredibly delicious and addicting.

What to serve with vegetable biryani:

Most Indian recipes work well together, this dish is a bit spicy so a yogurt raita would be great to cool it off a little. Naan would also be a delicious side option as would other vegetarian Indian dishes like saag paneer or vegetable korma.

vegetable biryani

What kind of rice is used in vegetable biryani:

A classic biryani is made using basmati rice. This rice is thinner and longer than a traditional long grain rice.

How do you make biryani rice?

The rice is traditionally made using ghee (clarified butter) along with onions, garlic and ginger. Once cooked vegetables are added in with spices and cooked until the spices bloom. Rice is added along with stock and cooked until fluffy.

Why is biryani rice yellow?

The yellow coloring in the rice comes from the use of turmeric along with other spices. These spices are added into the dish before the uncooked rice is mixed in.

easy indian biryani rice

Tools used in the making of Vegetable Biryani:
Basmati Rice: The perfect rice for the biryani, do not substitute long grain rice.
Cast Iron Dutch Oven: I used to fry in my cast iron skillet, but this dutch oven is perfect for cooking the vegetables and rice, maintaining heat without any hot spots that may burn the food.

Recipe

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Easy Vegetable Biryani Recipe

4.98 from 39 votes
  • Yield: 6 Servings
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Course: Side Dish
  • Cuisine: Indian
  • Author: Sabrina Snyder
Vegetable Biryani is a bold and flavorful Indian rice dish with bell peppers, peas, carrots and potatoes in a spiced rice dish made with turmeric, garam masala and other warm spices.

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil or ghee if available
  • 1 yellow onion cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 tablespoon garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon ginger minced
  • 1 roma tomato minced finely
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup peas
  • carrot sliced into thin coins
  • 2 russet potatoes peeled and chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper sliced
  • 2 stalks celery thinly sliced
  • 1 cup cauliflower florets
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 cups basmati rice rinsed and drained

Instructions

Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.

  1. Add olive oil in a large dutch oven over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the onion, and cook until translucent, about 3-4 minutes.

  3. Stir in garlic, ginger, tomatoes, and ½ cup water.
  4. Bring to a simmer, and cook until the water has evaporated, about 10 minutes.

  5. Add in the peas, carrot, potato, bell pepper, celery and cauliflower and stir well.
  6. Add in the salt, cayenne, black pepper, garam masala, turmeric, cumin and cinnamon, stirring well.
  7. Add in the vegetable broth and bring to a boil.
  8. Rinse basmati rice.

  9. Add in the basmati rice, reduce to low heat and cook (covered) for 18-20 minutes.

  10. Turn off the heat and let sit, covered, for five minutes before opening and serving.

Nutrition Information

Yield: 6 Servings, Amount per serving: 393 calories, Calories: 393g, Carbohydrates: 72g, Protein: 7g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 1435mg, Potassium: 605mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 2380g, Vitamin C: 37g, Calcium: 54g, Iron: 1.8g

All images and text © for Dinner, then Dessert.

Keyword: Easy Vegetable Biryani
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Vegetable Biryani with peas, potatoes and cauliflower
Easy Vegetable Biryani

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Comments

  1. So relieved to find this recipe! All the other ones online require ingredients I don’t have at home, or more than one pot to clean!

  2. This was quick and delicious! I made a couple of changes due to what I had on hand – skipped the celery and potatoes and doubled the amount of cauliflower and peas. Also, tempered the spice by adding them before all the vegetables and letting them cook for a few minutes. Will definitely be making this again!

  3. Can this be done in a slow cooker? If so can I just throw everything in including the rice? Thank you 🙂

    1. Of course! Just make sure to cool it down to room temperature before placing it in an airtight container or storage bag. I’m so glad you enjoyed it.

  4. Great recipe obviously you can substitute vegetables the methodology is spot on.It’s great to have recipes that you can slightly altered I E add chicken or any other cooked meat and still end up with a delicious dish. I am a very happy follower!

  5. I been trying different recipes for a long time but this one is the closest to restaurant taste i could find . I left out celery and put in chopped green beans. Basically do what you use to. I made enough to fill 2 small takeaway tubs by doing half the broth , 1 potato, one cup of rice ,3/4 tbsp ginger and 3/4 tbsp garlic .the rest i used the same measures. Thankyou so much this really has made my day .

  6. I don’t own a Dutch Oven but my large thick bottomed frying pan with lid worked perfectly. It makes quite a lot so there was plenty for leftovers. Really easy and tasty!