• Jyothi Varne

Mushroom Biryani Recipe

This recipe was on my mind for a long long time. Then there was that age-old debate to either call it a pulav (rice mixed with freshly ground masala) vs biryani which is rice layered with a thick slow-cooked gravy along with meat. None the less I am calling it Biryani because the process and ingredients followed here is pretty much similar to its non-veg cousin.

I've used button mushrooms to make this, so do not know how it would taste if any other variant is used. However, you can try this recipe with a medley of veggies as well, preferably beans, carrots, peas and cauliflower florets.

A good biryani as per me always makes use of excellent quality Basmati rice. Parboiling it with a bouquet of whole spices, without overcooking and avoiding that urge to constantly stir is the key to long-grained, non-sticky biryani rice. I personally prefer Daawat Brand.

I will be making a separate post with details around how a homemade, super fragrant Biryani masala can be made at your home. Trust me its a super-strong blend of spices and you will forget to ever use a store-bought variant :) But if you are in a hurry, do feel free to use any Biryani masala powder available in your nearby grocery store.

Also, like any Biryani recipe, this dish calls out a for a decent amount of prep work. Golden fry your onions in oil/ghee until slightly crispy. Marination of your chopped mushrooms and parboiling rice are some of the critical steps.


2 cups - Basmati Rice

400 g - Button Mushroom, cut in two halves

4 large Onions - sliced

2 large tomatoes - chopped & pureed

2 Bay leaves

1 tsp - Caraway seeds

1 tbsp - Biryani masala

1/2 tsp - Garam masala

1 tbsp - red chilli powder (adjust as per preference)

1/4 tsp - turmeric powder

1 tsp - coriander powder

5 Green Cardamom

1 tbsp - ginger garlic paste

1/2 tsp - Saffron strands, soaked in 2 tbsp milk

4 tbsp - butter, unsalted

3 tbsp - ghee

2 tbsp - refined oil

Few mint & coriander leaves for garnish, during the layering process

For the marinade:

2 tbsp - Biryani masala

1 cup - thick yoghurt

4 tbsp - coriander leaves

1 tbsp - mint leaves

salt to taste


  1. Soak basmati rice for 20mins and parboil (half cook) with sufficient water, a tbsp oil and 1/2 tsp salt with a bouquet/potli of 2 Cardamom, 1-star anise & 4 cloves. Drain the excess water and set aside for later use.

  2. In a bowl add in chopped mushroom, mint & coriander leaves, biryani masala, yoghurt. Mix well and let this marinate for 30mins.

  3. Heat oil in a wok and fry the sliced onions until golden brown and crispy, ensure not to burn them. Drain on a tissue/absorbent paper. Set aside.

  4. Heat oil & ghee in a deep bottom vessel, add whole spices - caraway seeds, cardamom & bay leaves - let them splutter.

  5. Add 2 thinly sliced raw onions, ginger garlic paste and cook until they are translucent. Next, add in the pureed tomato, along with spice powders; coriander, turmeric & chilli. Cook until the oil separates from this mixture with intermittent stirring.

  6. Add salt to taste, biryani masala & the marinated mushrooms and cook until it releases its water & is reduced to a nice thick semi gravy with a closed lid on a medium simmer.

  7. Take out 3/4 of this quantity for layering.

  8. With the bottom layer as mushroom mix, top up with a layer of parboiled basmati rice, sprinkle golden crispy onions and a tsp of saffron milk. Continue this layering until all of the gravy and parboiled rice layers are done.

  9. Finally, sprinkle coriander and mint leaves. Seal the vessel with a lid and roti dough around its circumference or you can keep something heavy to avoid the steam from escaping to give it a "Dum Biryani" effect. Cook on a low flame for 6-8mins.

  10. Turn off flame & let it sit, undisturbed for another 10mins before you remove the lid.

Serve hot with raita

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