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Biryani Recipes

Updated on September 1, 2016
Gordon Hamilton profile image

Gordon loves cooking and experimenting with food. He loves making new dishes, particularly with unusual or under-used ingredients.

What Are Biryani Dishes?

Biryani is essentially a dish made from rice and spices, as well as a combination of meats and/or vegetables. The name is derived from a Persian word meaning, "Roasted," or, "Fried," but as I hope to show on this page, it is also possible to make delicious biryani style recipes without employing any roasting or frying techniques. I tend to use the same blend of spices when preparing biryani recipes of whatever type but it is entirely possible to experiment in this respect and come up with your own biryani spice mixture which is best suited to your own individual tastes.

My Biryani Spice Mix
My Biryani Spice Mix

My Biryani Spice Mix

Rather than including the ingredients of my Biryani spice mix in the text of each individual recipe, I thought that it would be more productive to simply include it here, at the top of the page, before we proceed to look at specific Biryani recipes.

As each recipe on this page will be in the quantities designed to feed two people, for every recipe you will require the following mix of spices:

1/2 tsp ground turmeric

1/2 tsp cumin seeds (toasted and crushed)

1/4 tsp chilli powder

1/4 tsp ground coriander seed

Preparation Method

The cumin seeds should be added to a dry frying pan and toasted until they begin to darken in colour and give off an enticing aroma. They should then be removed from the pan, crushed in a pestle and mortar in to a fine powder and mixed with the remainder of the ingredients. Although it is entirely possible to use pre-ground cumin seeds, it is my belief that this method adds a little extra something in terms of flavour to the finished dish.

NB - I will also add cinnamon to each recipe at different stages and in different forms, depending upon my chosen cooking method. I will cover this aspect in each individual recipe.

Cauliflower Biryani Recipe

Cauliflower Biryani
Cauliflower Biryani

This extremely simple, vegetarian/vegan Biryani recipe is also very quick to prepare in the sense that it requires no marinating of any of the ingredients.


1 small cauliflower head (broken in to florets)

5oz basmati rice

1 small onion (finely sliced)

Biryani spice mix (see above)

1 pint of fresh vegetable stock

2 cloves of garlic (crushed or grated)

2" of cinnamon stick

1 tbsp roughly chopped coriander/cilantro (plus 2 leaves for garnish)

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

6 lettuce leaves

6 cucumber slices

1 medium tomato (sliced)

1 tbsp sunflower oil


The rice should be washed and drained thoroughly in cold water. The sunflower oil should then be added to a large pot or pan and brought up to a medium heat. The onion and garlic should then be added and stirred around for a couple of minutes until the onion starts to turn translucent but not to darken. The spices, cauliflower, cinnamon stick, seasoning and rice should then be added and mixed thoroughly to coat all of them in oil before the hot stock is added. The stock should then be brought up to a simmer for around fifteen minutes.

The Biryani should be stirred occasionally during this cooking period. Only when the rice has been seen to have absorbed all of the stock should the chopped coriander/cilantro be stirred through the dish and the Cauliflower Biryani served on lettuce leaves with cucumber and tomato garnish as shown above.

Egg Biryani Recipe

Egg Biryani
Egg Biryani
Egg Prepared for Biryani
Egg Prepared for Biryani

This incredibly simple Egg Biryani recipe is essentially just egg fried rice with the Biryani spice mix and some onion and garlic. It is absolutely delicious, however, and can either be eaten on its own or even as an accompaniment to a meat-based curry.


5oz basmati rice

2 large eggs

Biryani spice mix (as above)

2" cinnamon stick

1/2 small onion (finely sliced)

1 clove of garlic (finely chopped)

1 tbsp freshly chopped coriander/cilantro

1 tbsp corn oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper


Wash the rice and add it to a pot of boiling, salted water, along with the cinnamon stick. Simmer for around twelve minutes, then drain it well, discard the cinnamon stick and spread it out on a plate to cool quickly.

While the rice is cooking, beat the two eggs and melt a little butter in a small, non-stick frying pan. Add the beaten eggs and increase the heat to medium, gently drawing the egg mix in from the sides with a spatula until the eggs begin to set. When the omelette is almost cooked, carefully turn it over to complete the process. Unlike when making a French omelette, we need the eggs here to be completely cooked. When the omelette is done, turn it out on to a plate to cool. When it is cool, gently roll it up (so as not to break it) as you would a carpet and slice to a thickness of around 1/4".

Add the corn oil to a hot wok and when it is heated, add the onion, garlic and spices. Cook for around a minute before adding the rice and stir fry for a further couple of minutes before adding the egg for a final minute of cooking. Stir through the coriander/cilantro, season and serve.

Lamb Biryani Recipe

Lamb Biryani
Lamb Biryani

Lamb Biryani is one of the more popular Biryani dishes. As with all meat based Biryanis, it does take slighly longer to prepare as the finished result is much better where the meat has been marinated in the spices.


1/4lb finely diced leg of lamb

2 tbsp vegetable oil

5 oz basmati rice

1 pint fresh chicken stock

Biryani spice mix (see above)

2" cinnamon stick

1/2 small cauliflower head (broken in to florets)

1 tbsp roughly chopped corinder/cilantro

1 tomato (cut in to 6 segments)

6 slices of cucumber

Salt and freshly ground black pepper


The first step in making Lamb Biryani in this fashion is to start the lamb marinating. One tbsp of vegetable oil should be mixed with the Biryani spice mix in a small bowl and the lamb subsequently stirred carefully in to ensure even coating. The bowl should then be covered with clingfilm and refrigerated for at least an hour.

After this time, the remaining tbsp of vegetable oil should be heated in a pot before the onion and garlic are added, followed by the marinated lamb and spices. The heat should be increased to evenly brown the lamb, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. The cauliflower, cinnamon stick, seasoning and washed rice should then be added for a minute or two before the hot stock. Fifteen minutes' gentle simmering should cook the dish and cause all the stock to be absorbed by the rice.

Prior to serving, the tomato, cucumber and chopped coriander/cilantro should carefully be folded through the mix.


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    • Gordon Hamilton profile image

      Gordon Hamilton 4 years ago from Wishaw, Lanarkshire, United Kingdom

      Thank you, fivesenses :)

    • fivesenses profile image

      Leena 4 years ago from new delhi

      nice biryani recipes.