Spiced vegetable biryani

Spiced vegetable biryani

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(81 ratings)

Takes 50 minutes - 1 hour


Serves 6
This simple vegetarian curry, full of fresh Indian flavours, is quick to make and cooks in a single pot

Nutrition and extra info

  • Vegetarian


  • kcal494
  • fat12g
  • saturates1g
  • carbs89g
  • sugars0g
  • fibre5g
  • protein14g
  • salt0.99g
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  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 small cauliflower, broken into small florets



    A brassica, like cabbage and broccoli, cauliflower is a mass of tiny, tightly packed flower…

  • 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
    Sweet potatoes

    Sweet potato

    sweet po-tate-toe

    Sweet potatoes have a creamy texture and a sweet-spicy flavour that makes them ideal for savoury…

  • 1 large onion, sliced



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 1l hot vegetable stock
  • 3 tbsp hot curry paste (Madras is good)
  • 1 red chilli, seeded and finely chopped
  • large pinch of saffron strands



    The stigma of a type of crocus, saffron threads have a pungent and distinctive aroma and flavour…

  • 2 tsp mustard seed (black or white)
  • 500g basmati rice
  • 140g trimmed green bean, halved
  • 2 lemons, juice only



    Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

  • a handful of fresh coriander leaves
  • 50g packet salted roasted cashew nuts



    The seeds from the 'Cashew Apple' - a tree which bears bright orange fruit and is native…

  • poppadums and raita, to serve


  1. Preheat the oven to 220C/gas 7/fan 200C. Pour the oil into a large roasting tin or ovenproof dish and put in the oven for a couple of minutes to heat through. Add all the vegetables to the tin, except the beans, stirring to coat them in the hot oil. Season with salt and pepper and return to the oven for 15 minutes until beginning to brown.

  2. While the vegetables are roasting, stir together the stock, curry paste, chilli, saffron and mustard seeds.

  3. Mix the rice and green beans with the vegetables in the tin, then pour over the stock mixture. Lower the oven to 190C/gas 5/fan 190C. Cover the dish tightly with foil and bake for 30 minutes until the rice is tender and the liquid has been absorbed. Stir in the lemon juice and check the seasoning, then scatter over the coriander and cashew nuts. Serve with a pile of poppadums and a bowl of raita.

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Comments, questions and tips

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22nd Jul, 2011
I have a suggestion, however - cook the onions a bit first and then put the vegetables in together with the rice. Don't cook them for 15 minutes before adding the rice as this leaves them overcooked. Esp. when it come so cauliflower.
22nd Jul, 2011
Fab recipe! Turned out really well for me. Light and fluffy. Although I did not have any curry paste and just used curry powder instead and also added a few cloves of garlic. I think that to work well this recipe really needs to be made with white basmati rice. If I was cooking it with brown, then I would probably double the time in the oven and upped the liquid content. Will now make it with different veg.
8th Jul, 2011
A lovely tasty biryani, although quite time consuming to make and a little on the dry side.
5th May, 2011
It was OK, but nothing to get excited about, just curry flavoured rice. I prefer a curry with a bit more sauce to it and this was very dry. Shame, as it had potential :(
5th Feb, 2011
Delicious, will definitely make this again. So easy, so tasty & so healthy. Made today for vegetarian friends - they loved it - for meat / fish eater will follow previous recommendation of adding prawns while roasting vegetables – may also consider using chicken.
30th Dec, 2010
Have cooked this a few times now and love it. I also add chicken and vary the veg depending on whats in the cupboard, comes out brilliant every time. This recipe is a keeper.
23rd Dec, 2010
Taste great! I also like to make rice with peas --peas pulao that's quite easy to make: http://www.vegrecipes4u.com/peas-pulao.html
6th Dec, 2010
Lovely receipe, have done a few times now and can add spices to suit each time. Lovely flavours!
27th Sep, 2010
In one hour all the ingredients were absolutely uncooked. Will hardly make it again.
25th Sep, 2010
Has anyone cooked this in a slow cooker, please?


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