Step by Step Recipe for Vegetable Biryani for Veg Lovers

When we hear the word “Biryani” the image that comes across our mind is of succulent meat pieces layered with aromatic long grained rice. But here, I’m going to be discussing the vegetable biryani. Yes, for many people vegetable biryani doesn’t appeal much, but trust me here I’m going to share the best recipe for vegetable biryani.

Vegetable biryani is the amalgamation of vegetables, exotic Indian spices, and aromatic herbs and long grained Basmati rice. This dish will hit all the right spots with its flavorful and rustic aroma.

Recipe for Vegetable Biryani – Ingredients used in the recipe

The ingredients used in vegetable biryani are almost the same used for Mutton/Chicken biryani.
Here is the list of ingredients used in making the vegetable gravy for biryani.

  1. Assorted vegetables finely chopped (I use the frozen mixed vegetable bag) – 2 cups.
  2. Potatoes 2 large
  3. Cauliflower 1 finely cut
  4. Onions 1 medium size
  5. Tomatoes 2 medium size
  6. Green chilies 6 whole
  7. Ginger garlic paste 1 and half tablespoons
  8. Salt to taste
  9. Red chili powder 1 and a half teaspoon
  10. Coriander powder 2 teaspoons
  11. Turmeric powder one fourth teaspoon
  12. Fennel powder 2 teaspoon
  13. Saffron infused milk half cup
  14. Ghee
  15. Fresh coriander leaves chopped
  16. Lucky masale vegetable biryani (optional)
recipe for vegetable biryani

Whole spices

  1. Bay leaf 1
  2. Green cardamoms 4
  3. Cloves 6
  4. Cinnamon stick 1
  5. Three fourth teaspoon shahi Jeera ( caraway seeds)

Unlike the meat biryani where meat is marinated before making the gravy, here vegetables are not marinated. Only potatoes and cauliflower are pan fried lightly before cooked into the gravy.

Veggies – In this recipe for vegetable biryani, assorted vegetables can be used. Potatoes, cauliflower, beans, bell peppers are used in making vegetable biryani. Fresh cut vegetables can be used, but I make vegetable biryani using frozen mix vegetable bag, potatoes and Cauliflower.

Preparation of Rice

Rice is the main ingredient in vegetable biryani and it is prepared exactly in the same manner as we would prepare for Meat biryani. Ingredients needed for this part are as follows:-

  1. Rice 4 cups ( Basmati long grain)
  2. Salt 8 teaspoons
  3. Bay leaf 1
  4. Cloves 3-4
  5. Garlic 2-3 cloves whole
  6. Ginger 2-3 pieces

Soak rice in enough water for at least half an hour. The practice of soaking rice before cooking helps the rice to puff up easily. To cook Basmati rice always use a large open pot so that the water doesn’t overflow. Boil water in the pan (the ratio of water and rice is 3:1, 3 part water and 1 part rice), water can be more also. When water is rolling boil add soaked and washed rice in it with all the above mentioned whole spices and salt. The whole spices mentioned above can also be tied in a clean muslin cloth and dropped in the water. Once the rice is cooked the bag can be removed easily. Keep an eye on it and when the rice is 80% cooked, remove it from the gas and drain all the excess water. Also discard the whole spices if the muslin cloth is not used.

Step by Step Recipe of Veg Biryani

Here I’m going to write the recipe for vegetable biryani step by step.

Step 1 – In a pot drizzle little oil and fry potatoes and cauliflower separately till golden brown. Remove them and put them in the plate.

Step 2 – In the same pot add little more oil and add the whole spices mentioned in the ingredients list. Once they start to crackle add the finely chopped onions. When the onions are golden brown add ginger garlic paste and let it fry for a minute.

Step 3 – Now add chopped tomatoes and green chilies and all the powdered spices. I have mentioned Lucky Masale vegetable biryani spice Mix (Optional) for those who doesn’t want to use the individual powdered spices. Add the water so that the spices do not get burnt. Let them fry for 10 minutes till the oil gets separated. Now add the mixed vegetables, potatoes and cauliflower mix them well, cover the lid and let them cook for another 10 min.

Step 4 – Now comes the best part layering the biryani! In a large open pot layer it with half of the boiled rice, put the prepared vegetables over it, chopped fresh coriander leaves and again layer the top with the remaining boiled rice. Drizzle the saffron infused milk on the top layer of rice and put the hot ghee also on it. It helps in separating the rice and also adds sheen to the rice. Cover the lid and put the pot on low flame for 20 minutes. The delicious vegetable biryani is ready to be served.

Vegetable Biryani Tips and Tricks

Tips and tricks for making any biryani is the same. Main role is played by the rice in biryani and special care is taken in preparing it.

  1.  Quality of rice is very important, don’t compromise on it. Use long grain rice only.
  2.  Soaking the rice before boiling it is very important. It allows the rice to puff up completely.
  3.  Salt is the taste enhancer and a must ingredient for boiling the biryani rice. A secret which is passed down to me from my mother in law is what I’m sharing it here. For example, if you are taking 4 cups of rice add 8 teaspoons of salt in it. Same for 3 cups of rice add 6 teaspoons of salt. It’s because when the excess water is drained out from the rice, the salt becomes perfect.
  4.  After draining the excess water from rice, leave the rice to cool down in the strainer for at least 10 minutes. This trick won’t let the rice mushed up.
  5.  Saffron can be mixed in the water also, but mixing it with milk is more liked. Milk helps in separating the rice and won’t make it mushy.
  6.  Time control is very important, as it makes sure that the rice are not only fully cooked but are also separate. Rice should not be mushy and for that look for the visual signs.


Biryani is a delicacy which is loved by each and every age group. Though meat lovers can’t even think of biryani without the tender pieces of meat but trust me this vegetable biryani is no less a treat for the gastronomes.
It’s a perfect harmony of vegetables, spices and herbs and rice and it’s is best served with Raita, a condiment of yogurt and cucumbers. This luscious vegetable biryani will satiate the taste buds.