Paneer Biryani

I had a biryani craving this week and normally I would just make the usual chicken biryani. This time, I tried something new, and decided to do a vegetarian version instead! It came out fantastic and I’m sure, all the vegetarian folks out there are going to love it. It’s simple and quick to prepare. 🙂


  • Prep time – 30 minutes
  • Cook time – 30 minutes

Ingredients for the Rice:

  • Tilda Basmati Rice – 2 cups (160 ml cup size)
  • Water – 2.5 cups (Vary as per your rice cooker)
  • Cloves – 1 piece
  • Cardamom – 1 piece
  • Cinnamon stick – 1 inch
  • Ginger garlic paste – 2 tsp
  • Large Red Onion (Thinly Sliced) – 1
  • Ghee – 3 tbsp
  • Salt – 1 tsp
  • Coriander for garnish – 1 tbsp

Method to cook Rice:

  1. Add the ghee and spices to a saucepan. When the ghee is hot, add the sliced onions and ginger garlic paste. Saute till onions are brown
  2. Add the rice and fry for 2 to 3 minutes
  3. Add the water, salt, and coriander leaves. Mix well
  4. Cook till rice is done

Ingredients for the Paneer: 

  • Paneer (Cubed) – 400g
  • Plain Yogurt – 1.5 cups
  • Kashmiri Chilli Powder – 1 tsp
  • Turmeric Powder – 3/4 tsp
  • Kasturi Methi (Dried Fenugreek Leaves) – 1 tsp
  • Garam Masala – 1 tsp
  • Cardamom Powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Ginger Garlic Paste – 1 tbsp
  • Coriander Leaves – 2 tsp
  • Mint Leaves – 2 tsp
  • Indian Green Chillies (Finely Chopped) – 1
  • Salt to taste

Method to cook Paneer:

  1. Marinate the paneer for two hours, in all the above paneer ingredients. Set in the fridge to marinate.
  2. Then heat a flat pan, add some vegetable oil, and once hot, saute the marinated paneer for 7 minutes on medium heat. The curry should have reduced a bit so that it is on the thick side.
  3. Set aside to cool.

Ingredients for the Paneer Biryani Topping:

  • Red Onion (Sliced) – 1/2
  • Cashew nuts – 10
  • Raisins – 15
  • Ghee – 2 tbsp

Method to cook the topping:

  1. Saute the red onions in hot ghee until deep fried
  2. Add the cashew nuts and raisins. Saute for one minute. Strain the sauteed toppings and set aside

Ingredients for the Raita:

  • Mini cucumber (Chopped) – 2
  • Pinch of salt
  • Coriander leaves – 2 tbsp
  • Plain Yogurt (mix until smooth)- 2 cups

Method to prepare the raita:

  1. Mix the onion, cucumber, and coriander leaves into the smooth plain yogurt
  2. Set aside in the fridge for an hour until cool

Layering the Paneer biryani:

  • Take a deep serving dish and spread one layer of rice. Then spread a layer of the paneer (including curry). Continue to alternate between the rice and paneer. End with a rice layer
  • Sprinkle the sauteed cashew nut, raisins, and onions over the top. Add some coriander and mint leaves for garnish
  • Enjoy the paneer biryani with raita and pickle 🙂



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