Vegetable Biryani

Urvashee Patel | Dessarts Updated

Vegetable Biryani is a tasty aromatic one-pot rice dish that’s perfect for a vegetarian dinner. Cold weather be darned, this makes everything better!

Vegetable Biryani Photo

An order of vegetable biryani is always a must anytime we go out for Indian food. At first glance, it seems like a simple enough dish to make at home. After all, its just rice mixed with vegetables right?  Yet, I almost never make it at home. This is because biryani requires a little more time and attention than my everyday rice and vegetables.

To make biryani, rice and vegetables are prepared and cooked separately. Then they are layered and baked together for their final cooking.  This creates a wonderful blend of unique tastes. The rice is infused with saffron and mixed with spicy vegetables.

Vegetable Biryani Picture

Biryani has a rather long list of ingredients, but once you have it all prepped it’s not so bad. The trickiest part is getting the rice to be the right texture. You want loose fluffy rice not overcooked sticky rice. I made the mistake of fully cooking my rice the first time around and I just couldn’t call it biryani. It’s important to undercook the rice initially because it finishes cooking in the oven.

It may sound like a lot of work, but the end result is well worth the effort. You will know this just from the wonderful aromas coming from your kitchen as you make it. This recipe is perfect if you are looking for something to serve as a vegetarian main dish. It’s also great for a dinner party because you can prepare it ahead of time and then finish it off in the oven. If you need a side, my cucumber raita recipe makes an excellent accompaniment.

Vegetable Biryani Image

Oh, and did I mention that I made it in this gorgeous new pot? Soleil is one of my favorite Le Creuset colors.  At 6 ¾ quarts, this Dutch oven is perfect for cooking and serving for big family get togethers. I also think it’s great for biryani because the same pot goes from stovetop to oven to table.

Happy Holidays!

Vegetable Biryani Recipe

    6 Servings


  • 2 cups Basmati Rice
  • 8 Green Cardamom Pods
  • 10 Whole Cloves
  • 1 Cinnamon Stick
  • 1 cup Carrot, diced
  • 30 French Beans, cut into 1" pieces
  • 2 cups Cauliflower Florets
  • 1 cup Peas
  • 1 teaspoon Butter, or ghee
  • 1/4 cup Cashew Nuts, split
  • 2 tablespoons Canola Oil
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin Seeds
  • 1 tablespoon Ginger Paste
  • 1 tablespoon garlic paste
  • 1 1/2 cups Onion, diced
  • 1 cup Tomato Puree
  • 3/4 cup Plain Yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon Turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon Red Chili Powder, red
  • 1 tablespoon Coriander Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Garam Masala
  • pinch of Saffron
  • 2 tablespoons Milk
  • 1/2 cup Fresh Cilantro, chopped


  1. Soak the rice in cold water for 20 minutes.
  2. Wash and drain the rice. Add rice to 5 cups of boiling water with 1 teaspoon salt, 3 cardamom, 5 cloves, ½ cinnamon stick. Cook the rice until its ¾ done. Drain well, fluff with a fork, and cool.
  3. Boil the carrots, beans, cauliflower and peas until half cooked. Drain and place in a bowl of ice water for 1-2 minutes. Drain and set aside.
  4. Heat the ghee or butter and gently fry the cashews until slightly brown. Set aside.
  5. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the cumin seeds, remaining cardamom, cloves, cinnamon stick and bay leaf. Cook for about a minute or until fragrant and lightly brown.
  6. Add the onions and stir for 1 minute. Add the ginger and garlic and stir for another minute.
  7. Add the tomato puree and let it cook for 3-4 minutes.
  8. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the yogurt, mixing well.
  9. Return the pot to the heat and add the turmeric, chili powder, coriander powder, and garam masala.
  10. Add the vegetables and salt to taste. Cook until the vegetables are soft. (You may need to add a small amount of water if it looks dry)
  11. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  12. Soak the saffron in warmed milk for a few minutes and fold it into the rice.
  13. Layer half the rice in a Dutch oven (or a lightly greased baking dish) and cover with half the cilantro and cashews.
  14. Next, layer the vegetables in the dish and cover with remaining rice and then cilantro and cashews.
  15. Cover tightly and bake for 15-20 minutes. Serve immediately.



Disclosure: This post used to feature a giveaway provided to you by Le Creuset. It is now over. The views and opinions expressed by contributors on Food Fanatic are based entirely upon the contributor's experiences with Le Creuset products. Neither the contributor nor Food Fanatic was compensated monetarily by the brand for this post, but the contributor did receive the items listed for review. 

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Urvashee Patel

About Urvashee

Urvashee blogs about delectable desserts on her blog, Dessarts. Lucky for us, she's sharing her delectable vegetarian dishes too as a Vegetarian Fanatic.