Instant Pot Chickpea Biryani
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This instant pot chickpea biryani is a wonderful dish because of how easy and healthy it is to make. On top of that, it’s gluten-free and rich in fiber and protein!
You are going to love this easy and quick take on this world famous rice dish!
Who would have known that thanks to the humble Instant Pot we can make this dish at home, completely from scratch and with the littlest fuss!
We will use chickpeas as our main protein source, colourful vegetables, a bunch of spices and a plant based fat.
All cooked in as little as 10 minutes.
How awesome is that??
What is Biryani?
Biryani is a mixed rice dish originating among the Muslims of the Indian subcontinent. It is made with Indian spices, rice, and usually some type of meat, eggs and potatoes.
Biryani is one of the most popular dishes in South Asia, as well as among the diaspora from the region. Similar dishes are also prepared in other parts of the world such as in Iraq, Thailand, and Malaysia. Biryani is the single most-ordered dish on Indian online food ordering and delivery services (source Wikipedia).
What does Biryani mean?
The word Biryani is derived from the Persian word “Birian“, which means ‘fried before cooking’ and Birinj, the Persian word for rice.
Can Biryani be Vegetarian?
Although the main versions of this Indian dish are made with either lamb, chicken and fish alongside vegetables, Biryani is so much popular that vegetarians have embraced it and adapted it to a vegetarian dish. In India, veg biryani is a very common dish which is made time and again in many households. In restaurants too there are different kinds of vegetable biryanis served.
The vegetarian ingredient we are going to substitute in our vegan version is ghee, the Indian clarified butter, which in our case will be simple vegetable oil.
Also Biryani is served with yogurt based sauces like raita, and those can also be simply veganized by using a dairy free alternative, like coconut, oat or soy yogurts, according to your needs or preference.
How To Make Vegan Chickpea Biryani in the Instant Pot
First things first, we need to sort out the instant pot. Put it onto sauté mode, and heat the oil with all the spices in it until they start sizzling.
Add in the onions, and cook for three to four minutes, or until slightly soft. A good tip when cooking onions is: don’t be afraid to put the lid on your pan. Onions will steam gently in the liquid that they produce, and this can help you tenderize onions in no time at all! Give it a go soon, it’s genuinely changed the way I cook a lot!
Next, add in the cashew, garlic, and ginger. Then, heat everything through for a few minutes. This will give the flavours a chance to mingle, and you’ll be able to smell the difference – the dish will become wonderfully aromatic!
Now, it’s time for the remaining vegetables to go in. Throw in the carrots, potatoes, green beans, chickpeas, and parsley (or coriander). When you chop up your herbs, make sure to retain the stems and use them in the dish too. They can be a wonderful flavour booster and can lead to some amazing food revelations. If you don’t feel like putting them in your food, then they’ll be great for your compost heap!
Squeeze the juice of half a lemon into the instant pot, and add the zest as well. While they’re in the pot, they’ll infuse gently and give everything a pleasantly acidic hit that really boosts a meal.
Finally, add the rinsed and soaked rice to the pot, and mix everything well. The better you mix things, the more well-distributed the final flavour will be.
Cover everything with water or vegetable broth, and then place the lid on the pilot. Set the instant pot to high pressure for four minutes, and walk away!
I’d recommend using vegetable broth here instead of water – the final flavour will be much nicer.
After the final beep to announce the four minutes have elapsed, allow the instant pot to rest for five minutes. Then, release the valve. Always make sure to be careful – steam is no joke.
Fluff up the rice dish with a fork or a spatula, and then serve the entire thing up. You can serve it as a main, or as an accompaniment to your favourite Indian-inspired dishes. It will be tasty either way!
Instant Pot Chickpea Biryani Recipe
200 g Basmati Rice (rinsed and soaked in water for 15-20 mins)
1 Can Chickpeas (drained)
1 Onion (diced)
1 Potato (Big, diced)
1 Carrot (Medium, diced)
50 g Green Beans (cut in 1 inch pieces)
2 tbsp Vegetable Oil (or chilli oil for a kick)
2 Bay Leaves
2-3 Garlic Cloves (grated or 1/2 tbsp Paste)
1-2 inch Ginger (grated or 1/2 tbsp Paste)
1 tbsp Cashew Nuts (roughly chopped)
½ tbsp Sea Salt
2 tsp Curry Powder (Mild)
1.5 tsp Smoked Paprika
½ tsp Turmeric Powder
½ Lemon (unwaxed)
700 ml Water (or vegetable broth)
Handful Parsley (or Coriander, roughly chopped)
1. Turn on sauté mode on the IP and heat the oil and all the spices until they start sizzling.
2. Add the onions and cook for 3-4 minutes or until slightly soft.
3. Add cashews, garlic, bay leaves and ginger, and heat for a couple of minutes.
4. Now it’s time for all the remaining veggies to go in: carrots, potatoes, green beans, chickpeas and parsley (or coriander).
5. Squeeze the juice of ½ lemon and leave the zest to infuse in the pot.
6. Lastly add the rinsed and soaked rice and mix well.
7. Cover with water or vegetable broth and set on “high pressure” for 4 minutes.
8. Allow to rest for 5 minutes after the final beep, then release the valve.
9. Fluff up the rice with a fork or spatula.
10. Serve as a main or as an accompaniment to your favourite Indian inspired dishes.
Instant Pot Chickpea Biryani
- 200 g (1 cups) Basmati Rice rinsed and soaked in water for 15-20 mins
- 1 Can Chickpeas drained
- 1 Onion diced
- 1 Potato Big, diced
- 1 Carrot Medium, diced
- 50 g (0.5 cups) Green Beans cut in 1 inch pieces
- 2 tbsp Vegetable Oil or chilli oil for a kick
- 2 Bay Leaves
- 2-3 Garlic Cloves grated or 1/2 tbsp Paste
- 1-2 inch Ginger grated or 1/2 tbsp Paste
- 1 tbsp Cashew Nuts roughly chopped
- ½ tbsp (0.5 tbsp) Sea Salt
- 2 tsp Curry Powder Mild
- 1.5 tsp Smoked Paprika
- ½ tsp (0.5 tsp) Turmeric Powder
- ½ Lemon unwaxed
- 700 ml (3 cups) Water or vegetable broth
- Handful Parsley or Coriander, roughly chopped
- Turn on sauté mode on the IP and heat the oil and all the spices until they start sizzling.
- Add the onions and cook for 3-4 minutes or until slightly soft.
- Add cashews, garlic, bay leaves and ginger, and heat for a couple of minutes.
- Now it’s time for all the remaining veggies to go in: carrots, potatoes, green beans, chickpeas and parsley (or coriander).
- Squeeze the juice of ½ lemon and leave the zest to infuse in the pot.
- Lastly add the rinsed and soaked rice and mix well.
- Cover with water or vegetable broth and set on “high pressure” for 4 minutes.
- Allow to rest for 5 minutes after the final beep, then release the valve.
- Fluff up the rice with a fork or spatula.
- Serve as a main or as an accompaniment to your favourite Indian inspired dishes.
For other Indian inspired dishes don’t miss:
– Mangalorean Roasted Cauliflower Curry
– Vegan Paneer Makhani
– Air Fried Vegan Pakora
– Spicy Potato Curry
– Homemade Naans
– Dahl Makhani
– Spicy Mango Chutney
– Lentil Dahl