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15 mins
Chicken Biryani Recipe

Chicken Biryani

Mamtha Sunil Kumar

Recipe by  

Biryani is a set of rice-based foods made with spices, rice (usually basmati) and meat, fish, eggs or vegetables. The name is derived from the ancient Persian word "beryā" which means "fried" or "roasted".

This delicious recipe for Chicken Biryani (along with tandoori chicken) has helped to take genuine Indian cuisine to the world. In fact, in UK, Indian cuisine reigns supreme, there being over 10,000 Indian restaurants at the last count. Many of these have been recognized by the Michelin Guide of outstanding European restaurants. A similar situation has also developed in USA, in places like San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, the New York City.

      Preparation Time: 30 Minutes

      Cooking Time: 45 Minutes

Ingredients for Chicken Biryani

If you are not familiar with any ingredients, please check our International Cooking Terms page.
If you want to know more about Indian ingredients, check our Indian Spices and our Indian Pulses, Rice and Seeds pages.
US Imperial Measurements  UK Imperial Measurements  Metric Measurements

Currently displaying quantities in US Imperial Measurements
to serve 4:
½ lb
jasmine or white rice
1½ lb
2 tablespoons
ghee (clarified butter or drawn butter)
whole cardamom pods
bay leaves
1 small
green chilies
1 tablespoon
ginger garlic paste
6 fl oz
natural yoghurt
½ teaspoon
fresh curry leaves
1 pint
1 sprig


How to Cook Chicken Biryani

  1. Soak the rice for 30 minutes in cold water, then allow it to drain in a colander. Skin and wash the chicken and cut it into 2" (5cm) pieces. Place the pieces in a colander to let any excess water drain away.
  2. Peel and chop the onion and finely chop the chilies. Heat the ghee in a large frying pan (skillet) over medium heat then stir in the cloves, cardamom, bay leaves and onions, and cook for about 5 minutes until the onions are soft. Add the chilies and the ginger garlic paste, then stir in the yogurt, salt, and curry leaves. Add the chicken pieces to the pan and cook over a gentle heat for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. When the chicken is cooked and the cooking liquids have condensed, add the rice, the water and the whole coriander sprig and bring to the boil.
  3. Cover with a lid and cook at a rolling boil over a medium heat for 20 minutes. Check the rice after about 10-12 minutes and, if necessary, add more water (if the water is evaporating too quickly before the rice is cooked). Once all the water is absorbed by the rice, your Chicken Biryani is ready to serve hot.

For vegans instead of using chicken, use vegetables like broccoli florets.
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