Chicken Biryani

Prep Time:

Cook Time:



About the Recipe


Chicken: 750grams approx., with bone

Sella rice: 4 cups (washed and soaked in warm water for 3 hours)

Onion: 2 medium thinly sliced

Tomatoes: 5 medium sized, diced

Garlic paste: 1 tbsp.

Ginger paste: 1 tbsp.

Green chili paste: 1 tbsp.

Yoghurt: 1 ½ cups, whisked

Salt: 1 tbsp. or to taste

Turmeric: ¾ tbsp.

Red Chili powder: 1 tbsp. or to taste

Kashmiri mirch/ Degi mirch: 1 tbsp.

Dried plums: 8 to 9

Whole peppercorns: approx. 1 tbsp.

Cinnamon: 3 sticks

Cloves: 6 to 7

Cumin: 1 tbsp.

Dried coriander powder: 2 tbsp.

Star anise: 1 flower

Green cardamoms: 4-5

Vinegar: 1 tbsp.

Lemon juice: 2 tbsp.

Fried onion: ½ cup

Fresh Coriander and mint leaves chopped: 1 ½ cup

Oil for cooking: 1 cup

Yellow food color: ½ tsp

Milk for food powder: ¼ cup


Cumin: 1 tbsp.

Cinnamon: 3 sticks

Nutmeg: ¼ of whole nutmeg

Mace: 2 petals of the whole flower (NOT the whole flower!)


Water: approx. 3 liters or as plenty to submerge rice deep

Bay leaves: 3

Cloves: 4 to 5

Salt: 3 tbsp.


· In a large bowl, mix together chicken, yoghurt, garlic ginger and green chili paste, along with salt, red chili powder, degi mirch, dried coriander, turmeric, lemon juice, vinegar, 1 cup of coriander and mint leaf mix and fried onions. Mix well, cover with a cling film or a plate and refrigerate for about 1 to 2 hours.

· To make chicken gravy, in a pot, add the oil, then add peppercorns, cinnamon sticks, cardamom, cloves, star anise and cumin. Fry them until fragrant then add the sliced onion and fry them until translucent and just golden brown on the edges but not full golden brown.

· Add in the tomatoes, cook them until soft, about 7 to 8 minutes.

· Add in the marinated chicken along with the grind masala, mix well and cook for about 4 to 5 minutes uncovered. Then cover and cook until the chicken is tender, masala is well incorporated and oil separates from the gravy.

· In a separate pot, bring the water to a boil, add in the salt, bay leaves and cloves. Once water is boiling, add in the soaked rice and cook uncovered until rice are almost cook through (about ¾ cooked through, the rest will cook in steam). Drain the water, don’t rinse the rice, keep them aside but keep them warm.

· Start layering the biryani in the same rice pot, with bottom most layer of rice then gravy then rice and so on, until all of your gravy and rice are used. The top most layer should be rice. Sprinkle over the leftover coriander mint leaves along with lemon and tomato slices.

· Finally make holes with handle of spoon in the rice. In a bowl, mix milk and food powder together, spoon the mixture into the created holes and spill the leftover over the top layer.

· Cover the pot with a lid, steam for about 15 to 20 minutes, by putting the pot over the lowest heat on stove. If heat on stove cannot be controlled or lowered, put the pot over a flat skillet or tawa.

· Mix well after the time is complete, and serve warm with some zeera raita and fresh salad.


If you would like to watch the video, here is the link (1) Karachi ki mash’hoor chicken biryani - YouTube