Authentic South Indian Biryani Recipe -
Authentic South Indian Biryani Recipe
  • READY IN hrs

Authentic South Indian Biryani

Recipe by  

"The deep flavors and piquant aromas of southern Indian cooking come to life in this recipe. Chicken simmers in a yogurt and tomato sauce rich with herbs and spices. This recipe calls for chicken, but you can use whatever meat you prefer. It can be a vegetarian dish, too. Just add vegetables instead of meat."

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 4 servings Change Servings
  • PREP

    15 mins
  • COOK

    2 hrs

    2 hrs 15 mins


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
  2. Heat oil in a large oven-proof pot over medium heat. Add cardamom, clove, and cinnamon stick. Stir in chopped onions, and fry until golden brown. Stir in garlic and ginger. Stir in chicken pieces, and fry about 3 minutes. Stir in chili powder, and cook several minutes. Stir in tomatoes, and cook about 5 minutes. Mix yogurt with 3 tablespoons water and lemon juice; stir into sauce.
  3. Cover pot, and bake in a preheated oven until the sauce is somewhat thickened and concentrated, about 15 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, cook rice in enough salted water to cover. Bring to a boil, and cook until it is half cooked, about 7 minutes. Drain rice, and stir into chicken and sauce. Stir in butter, season to taste with salt, cover pot, and bake 1 hour. Stir in mint and cilantro immediately before serving.
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Jun 30, 2010

Loved this! I cooked it a lot more simply (and faster), and would do that again. I didn't bake it at all, but just simmered it for about 10 minutes on the stove after adding the yogurt. I used only 1 Tbl. oil, 1 onion (which I thought was plenty!), 2 pods of cardamom (1 wasn't enough), 2 tsp. ginger (instead of 1/4 tsp.), 1/2 tsp. chili powder, and didn't dilute the yogurt with water. The recipe didn't state when to add the mint and cilantro, so I just added them at the end, right before serving (in addition, I used only half the amounts of mint and cilantro called for). Perfect! Note that 16 oz. of yogurt is equal to 2 cups. I also made the rice separately in my rice cooker. Thanks so much for the recipe!

Most Helpful Critical Review
Apr 22, 2008

This was very bland. I live in an Indian neighborhood and have had excellent Biryani before and this was a huge disappointment. It smells right but tastes like nothing!


21 Ratings

Dec 17, 2008

I'm the author of this: apologies. Please add the mint while cooking the gravy and add cilanthro at the very end in the gravy as well. The rice must be boiled half way before putting it in to bake, otherwise it will turn into mush!

Jun 02, 2006

Considering that Biryani is totally a north Indian dish, I was intrigued by the title. I was all the more puzzled when the recipe called for baking. However, following the recipe, I ended up with a fabulous dish. Really as authentic as I have known it. Few pointers. The quantity of salt is not clear. I added 1.5 teaspoons of salt to the rice and a teaspoon to the sauce. The recipe does not tell you what to do with the cilantro,mint and lime. Squeeze the lime before baking. Cilantro,mint can be added the last minute and tossed before taking out of the oven. Being a vegetarian, I totally eliminated the chicken and substituted it with 2 boiled eggs. Worked just fine! Great with cucumber raita! Worth the effort!

Sep 17, 2007

My whole family really really enjoyed this dish. It wasn't too spicey for the picky kids but was interesting and flavorful enough for my husband and I to enjoy. I'll definitely make this again.

Jun 16, 2009

I wouldn't know about the authencity, as I have never had this before.......but I do know about flavour, flavour!! Unfortunately I didn't have time to bake, so did a little extra time on stove and basmati rice on the side. I added an extra clove and pod, cause you can never have too much of a good thing. Will be making and baking this one again. Thank you.

Jan 22, 2007

I rated this one the day after I made it and said that I thought the proportions were out - too much rice! Not enough liquid & spices..added garam masala, coriander, cumin etc...also added steamed (can microwave or fry) chunks of potato before baking...tasty with afew modifications..

Jul 24, 2006

Sorry, but I just wasn't thrilled. The rice turned to mush and the overall flavor was just so-so. It would maybe be helped by making the sauce and cooking the rice completely on the stove and skipping the oven part all together. Also, I'm glad I looked at the reviews to figure out when would be a good time to add the cilantro and mint.


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  • Calories
  • 860 kcal
  • 43%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 135.4 g
  • 44%
  • Cholesterol
  • 75 mg
  • 25%
  • Fat
  • 14.1 g
  • 22%
  • Fiber
  • 5.4 g
  • 21%
  • Protein
  • 44.9 g
  • 90%
  • Sodium
  • 185 mg
  • 7%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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