Vegetable Biryani Recipe- Your Food Fantasy

Spiced Vegetable Biryani

“Biryani”, when you hear this magical what comes to your mind? If you visualise fragrant rice smeared in mouth watering spices along with chicken, mutton, egg or veggies, then you are not the only one.

I say “Biryani is a ritual, biryani a religion, biryani an emotion”.

Veg Dum Biryani - Your Food Fantasy
Veg Dum Biryani – Your Food Fantasy

The origin of biryani takes us to Persia, the word biryani itself has been derived from Persian word “birinj”, which is equivalent to rice. Some sources also suggests that it is derived from “beriyan”, which means “to fry”. Whatever the correct theory is, one can relate to both the theories, as biryani does mean rice which has fried contents.

It is uncertain if the dish originated in Persia (and was bought to India by Mughals) or if the biryani was originated in north of india, historians have debated about this, and I am less qualified than those historians to put any claim. Only thing I could say is that Biryani has now “Indian” associated with it now and quintessential to Indian cuisine.

Biryani - Authentic Recipe - Your Food Fantasy
Biryani – Authentic Recipe – Your Food Fantasy

In past, I have shared recipes of Chicken Dum Biryani, Lamb Biryani and Jackfruit Biryani, however as I am a vegetarian myself, I decided that this time around, I will be making (and sharing) the recipe of vegetable based biryani. In terms of steps to make biryani, all these biryanis of mine have similarity, as I like that “Dum” flavour. In future, I do envisage to share other style of Biryani recipes. 

“Dum”, is a process of cooking in steam, and to make Dum Biryani, one needs to close the cooking vessel/ container air tight, so that steam does not go out and let the biryani cook gradually in the steam.

Veg Dum Biryani - Authentic Recipe - Your Food Fantasy
Veg Dum Biryani – Authentic Recipe – Your Food Fantasy

Lot of times people argue that if there is no meat in biryani it is rather be called pulao or pilaf.

So let’s understand what’s difference between Veg Biryani and Pulao/Pilao.

Difference between Biryani and Pulao 

First thing is way of rice preparation.

While Biryani is made by boiling rice in water, and then draining the water away, leftover rice is used to layer up. However, Pulao is made through the absorption process, so the amount of water or stock is completely absorbed by the rice and vegetables in the dish.

Second is the Layering

In Biryani, rice is layered over the semi-cooked veggies or meat and let it cook so that rice gets the flavour from the vegetables or meat used. In Pulao, there is no layering, both rice and vegetables are cooked together.

Vegetable Biryani Recipe -
Vegetable Biryani Recipe –

Third is spices

Biryani is rich in spices, but Pulao normally is less loaded with spices. Fragrance coming from Biryani is unique (thanks to its spices), in Pulao its not so strong. 

Fourth is heat

Biryani is normally cooked on slow heat for long time, this slow heat lets the flavour of Veg (or meat) mix well with the rice. Best to use a heavy bottom pot for cooking biryani. Pulao, on other hand is made on medium to fast heat and takes much less time to cook compared to Biryani.

Vegetable Biryani Recipe - Your Food Fantasy
Vegetable Biryani Recipe – Your Food Fantasy

Hoping my above explanations can put to rest the age old debate of Biryani vs Pulao.

Of course there are other variants of rice like, Fried rice, Tehri / Khichdi, may be I will create a dedicated post to explain differences between all of these rice dishes.

Homemade Vegetable Biryani - Your Food Fantasy
Homemade Vegetable Biryani – Your Food Fantasy

Let’s now get to step by step recipe of making this delicious Vegetable Biryani at home.

Vegetable Biryani - Your Food Fantasy by Meenu

Vegetable Dum Biryani

A popular spices and vegetables mixed rice dish which is prepared by layering the biryani gravy and basmati rice in flat bottom vessel and sealing the lid.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Marination 40 mins
Total Time 2 hrs
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 5 Portions
Calories 653 kcal


For Marination

For Rice

Other Ingredients


  • First of all, add saffron to warm water and keep aside. Now, in a mixing bowl, add everything listed under marination category, and mix well. Keep it aside for 30-40 minutes.
    Marinating Vegetables for Biryani | Your Food Fantasy
  • Take a heavy bottomed pan/kadhai and heat ghee/clarified butter in it. Once hot, fry cashews and raisins till they are golden and take them out on a kitchen towel.
  • Now to the same ghee in the pan, add asafoetida, cumin seeds, cinnamon stick, black Cardamom and peppercorns and sauté for a minute. Add chopped onion and saute them till they are translucent.
  • Add Biryani Masala, salt, chopped tomatoes and green chillies and roast this until it starts leaving oil.
  • Now add the marinated vegetables and 1/3 cup water and let it cook on medium flame for 10 minutes.
    Getting the Veggies ready for Vegetable Biryani | Your Food Fantasy
  • In an another pan, bring 4 cup of water to boil. Add cloves, black cardamom, green cardamom, peppercorns and bay leaves to it. Add salt, oil and lemon juice to it and give a stir.
  • Now add soaked rice to it and let it cook till the rice are 90 percent done. It will take around 8-10 minutes. Drain them in a colander and keep aside.
  • By this time, the vegetables would have cooked. Switch off the flame. Now take out half of the cooked vegetables in a bowl, layer half of cooked rice in the pan over cooked vegetables and spread chopped coriander, mint, fried onions, cashews, raisins and half of saffron water.
    Homemade Vegetable Dum Biryani - Your Food Fantasy
  • Again layer the rest half of cooked vegetables which we took out in the bowl, and repeat the above process of layering rice, mint, coriander, cashews and raisins topping it up with rest of saffron water. Add kewra water and orange colour mixed with water.
    Vegetable Dum Biryani Recipe - Your Food Fantasy
  • Cover the pan with lid and let it cook for 20 minutes on the lowest flame.
  • Biryani is ready. serve it with onion tomato Raita and enjoy.
    Vegetable Dum Biryani -


1) Adding orange colour is optional.
2) You can skip marination if making in hurry, and can directly cook the vegetables with the ingredients.
3) You can use refined oil instead of ghee but this Biryani tastes best when cooked with ghee.
4) I have used the Cinnamon stick, Bay leaves, Cloves, Cardamom  and Peppercorns separate in rice and gravy as it enhances the flavour of biryani however you can use them together in one place only. 


Nutrition Facts
Vegetable Dum Biryani
Amount Per Serving
Calories 653 Calories from Fat 216
% Daily Value*
Fat 24g37%
Saturated Fat 9g56%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 9g
Cholesterol 34mg11%
Sodium 1406mg61%
Potassium 829mg24%
Carbohydrates 101g34%
Fiber 11g46%
Sugar 14g16%
Protein 18g36%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keyword Biryani, Rice, Vegetarian
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How To Make Vegetable Biryani - Your Food Fantasy
How To Make Vegetable Biryani – Your Food Fantasy


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