Restuarant style Veg Dum- Biryani at home! (Vegan)

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This is a simple recipe in which I have used the vegetables that were available in my home yesterday. Dum-Biryani is a classic dish of Mughal Nizams and one of the most loved delicacy in India and amongst all the Indians residing abroad. Also, you all must be aware that practically, there is no vegetarian biryani as the original biryani is a chicken or mutton one. However, we can replicate the same recipe into a vegetarian or vegan version as shown here and enjoy the delicious flavors seeping into the rice.

Life is like a Biryani, you have to fill it up with the best aromas and flavors..

Making dum-biryani can become a tedious process so most of us opt to order it from outside; but let me show you a simple step-by-step process which will make your life much easier. It is best to make this in an earthen cookware, but don’t worry if you don’t have one – yours will taste as delicious as the one from restaurant.

Veg Dum-Biryani

The main thing to remember in this recipe is to cut the vegetables in remarkably bigger sizes and marinate it for a few minutes and cook just about right. Also, make sure that the quantity of vegetables is as much as the rice. Nobody enjoys rice with less or no gravy left for them, right? Let’s see the recipe.

Veg Dum-Biryani

Let's cook this delicious Mughal recipe at our home, with minimum ingredients and loads of love!
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Total Time40 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Biryani, Biryani Recipe, Dinner Recipes, Dum-Biryani, Sabz-dum-Biryani, Vegan Biryani, Vegan Recipes


For Rice

  • 2 cups Basmati Rice (preferably aged)
  • 6 cups Water
  • 1 tsp Shahi Jeera / Caraway seeds
  • 1 Tej Patta / Bay leaf
  • 1 inch Dalchini / Cinnamon Stick
  • 3 Elaichi / Green Cardomoms
  • 4 Lavang / Cloves
  • 2 tsp Oil (you can use ghee too, but i prefer the oil used in frying onions)
  • 4 tsp Salt
  • 2 Green chili slit

For Gravy

  • 3 tbsp Oil
  • 2 Onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 Potato, chopped in medium-small squares
  • 1 Tomato, chopped
  • 1 Capsicum, chopped (optional)
  • 1 cup Green Peas
  • ½ cup Coriander leaves, chopped
  • 1 Chakri Phool / Star anise
  • 3 Elaichi / Green Cardomoms
  • 2 tsp Biryani Masala
  • 1 inch Dalchini / Cinnamon Stick
  • 2 tsp Shahi Jeera / Caraway seeds
  • 2 tsp Salt (as per taste)
  • 1 tsp Red chili powder
  • 1 tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 1 tsp Jeera Powder / Cumin powder
  • 1 cup Curd (optional, If you want, use vegan curd. I did not use in my recipe)
  • ½ cup Mint leaves, chopped
  • 2 tsp Ginger-Garlic paste

Optional Ingredients

  • 2 tsp Hot milk with saffron soaked in it.
  • 1 cup Vegetables of your choice like carrots, beans, cauliflower etc. or whatever you have handy.
  • 2 tsp Kewda and / or Rose water
  • 2 tsp Ghee (I prefer oil though)
  • 1 tsp Anar-dana (pomegranate seeds)
  • 1 tsp Kasuri Methi (Dried fenugreek leaves)

For sealing the pot

  • cup Flour dough as we make for roti / paratha (salt and oil not needed)


Cooking Rice

  • Wash the rice a few times till water runs clear and soak it for about 30 minutes. Drain the water.
  • In a large pot, keep about 6 cups water (double the quantity of rice) for boiling and add all the ingredients except salt and rice.
  • Once the water starts bubbling, add the salt and soaked rice. Cook until al-dente, therice should be firm, grainy and about 80% cooked.
  • Drain the water and keep aside. Do not throw the water.

Making Gravy

  • Marinate all the potato and capsicum in curd (curd enhances the taste). Add salt, red chili powder, turmeric powder, jeera powder, kasuri methi, anardana. Keep aside.
  • In a pan, heat the oil and fry sliced onions till golden brown. Please be careful and do not burn, trick is to switch off the heat once it starts turning reddish. Remove from the oil and keep aside.
  • Now, on low flame, saute the masalas and ¾th quantity of fried onions, marinated vegetables. Add ginger-garlic paste paste. Simmer for about 2 minutes and add tomatoes and biryani masala. Stir for 1-2 minutes. The vegetables should be half cooked.
  • Add the green peas. I added corn too as I had them. Stir for about half a minute and add a part of mint and coriander leaves. Now, gently layer the cooked rice and sprinkle the remaining fried onions, coriander leaves and min leaves on them evenly. Pour the kesar milk evenly at this stage. I also add about 2-3 tsp of oil that we used in frying onions, it gives a nice aroma to the rice.
  • Dum-process: Sprinkle about 2-3 tbsp of water that we kept aside from draining cooked rice. Cover with a tight lid and seal the covering with the dough. Now, for about 1-2 minutes keep the heat on high flame and then let it cook slowly on low flame. You may keep a tava below your pot so that the heat is evenly distributed. This allows all the aromas and flavors to seep into the rice nicely.
  • After 10-12 minutes exactly, switch off the flame and remove the seal carefully with a knife. Check the rice, you will notice that the water that we sprinkled is gone, rice is perfectly cooked, vegetables are intact, didn't overcook or burn and everything looks delicious.
  • Serving: Making biryani is not as tough, but a lot of people screw it up at the time of serving. So make sure you take out the biryani with a flat and thin spatula and remove it from pan in layers from the side. Do not mix. Garnish with mint leaves, dry fruits if you want to add, fried onions. Serve with raita and pickle. Ta-da-da!! You're now never going to order a biryani from outside..!

If you’re bored of eating basic dal-rice and khichdi at home during this lockdown, do try this recipe. It only takes about 40 minutes to one hour if you do it in an organised manner. Please share the recipe and feedback with me and all the good looking, aromatic biryani with your loved ones. Thank you for checking out this recipe.

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