I have probably stated this before and I have no shame in saying it again. Biryani is my weakness. Especially Chicken Biryani. There is something about how the different components of this dish come together that makes this so, so attractive to me. It is just a harmonious confluence of flavors and textures. The perfectly cooked rice grains layered with the soft, succulent ‘falling off the bone’ chicken pieces, the flavorful potatoes, the toasted nuts and the fresh cilantro. And then there is the incredible aroma from all those spices and if you add saffron too, then it becomes just heavenly!
Being on a Paleo diet for more than a year now, I do miss my rice. But when someone talks about Biryani, I cannot stop drooling! Sine last month, I have been allowing myself a little bit of rice every now and then to see if it gets me a reaction or not. I seem to be doing ok as long as I have only a little. So that’s the reason I decided to make this Instant Pot Biryani two weeks ago.
Now if you are thinking that you would need to labor a lot for making this exquisite dish, then I am going to make you happy. Although I have posted the traditional long version of Chicken Biryani before, this one that I am sharing today is a relatively easy version plus you can make it in the Instant Pot! You could also follow the same steps and make it in a regular pot (with a tight fitting lid) except you will need to cook it for longer. I have included some notes on this in my recipe below. You can make your own biryani masala (I have included the recipe for that ) or buy store bought.Biryani masala.
With this Instant pot version, you can make Chicken Biryani even on a weeknight! Oh gosh, it was so tasty and once I opened the lid of the Instant pot, the whole house smelled divine! I ended up having some – yes I did have only a small helping 🙁 eating more of the chicken than the rice, but the kids and the Mr enjoyed it thoroughly!
If you try this recipe, do let me know in the comments below how you liked it. And don’t forget to come back and rate it too!
I made a video of this video too – Check it out !
- 6 pieces of chicken drumsticks (legs) or about 6 large chicken thigh pieces (about 1½ lbs)
- 1 tsp sea salt
- ½ tsp kashmiri chilli powder
- ½ tsp turmeric powder
- 2 tsp ginger garlic paste (see notes)
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1½ cups of Basmati rice washed and soaked in water for 15 mins at least
- 2 tbsp olive oil or ghee
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 bay leaves
- 3-4 cloves
- 2 black cardamom
- 3-4 whole black peppercorns
- 2 one inch piece of cinnamon sticks
- 2 medium red onions, thinly sliced
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp turmeric
- ½ tsp red chilli powder (I use Kashmiri chilli powder)
- 2 tsp coriander powder
- 2 tsp Biryani masala (for homemade check recipe below or you can use store bought
- 1 medium potato, cut into long slices
- 4-6 strands of saffron (optional)
- 2¼ cups water
- ½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- ½ cup cashew nuts toasted in ghee or olive oil
- 4 cloves
- 4-6 whole black pepper corns
- 1 tsp caraway seeds (shahi jeera)
- 1 tbsp coriander seeds
- 4 whole green cardamom pods
- 1 black cardamom pod
- 1 two inch cinnamon stick
- 1 mace
- 1 star anise
- 2 kalpaasi / dagad phool flowers /stone flower(optional)
- Add all the ingredients listed under biryani masala to a coffee grinder (spice grinder) and blend till fine. Store in air tight glass or metal container.
- Wash the basmati rice 3-4 times and cover with water. Keep aside for at least 15 mins.
- Put the Instant Pot on and press Saute mode. Ad the olive oil or ghee. And then add all the whole spices - cloves, bay leaves, cardamom, black peppercorns and cinnamon. Stir for 30 secs and then add the onions. Stir fry for 2 mins. Add the salt and the spices and Cover with a lid and cook for 2 mins. Open lid and add the potato slices.
- Drain the water from the rice and add the rice to the Instant Pot. Add the saffron (if adding) and the measured quantity of water. Stir to mix and make sure all the rice and the potatoes and chicken are under the water level.
- Close the Instant pot lid and turn the valve to sealing position.
- Press Cancel to trun saute mode off.
- Press Pressure Cook and manually change time to 8 mins.
- Once the timer goes off (after 8 mins), press Cancel to turn heat off. Then manually release the pressure (Do this carefully covering the valve with a towel and using a wooden spoon to lift the valve)
- Open the lid but don't stir the rice now. Let the rice cool for about 10-15 mins before adding the toasted cashew nuts and cilantro. Serve warm.
You can also use a regular pot or a pressure cooker to make this recipe. You would need to cook on low heat for anywhere between 10-14 mins.