Instant Pot Vegetarian Paneer Biryani is an easy, authentic, kid-friendly, vegetarian/vegan dinner in under 30 minutes.
Ever since I created a one-pot, easy but authentic Chicken Biryani, readers have asked for a vegetarian version, and I finally made it yesterday. I also have a low-carb chicken biryani that is full of flavor, and definitely worth trying. This one of course, is not low carb. What it is, however, is delicious and easy.
I used frozen paneer which I got from the Indian grocery store, although the internet is full of recipes for how to make your own paneer. Armed with ready-made paneer, and a cup of frozen vegetables, I was ready to get started with this one. I know most of you will want to add more water to this recipe–don’t do that. The rice was al dente, each grain was separate as you see in the picture below, and it all just worked.
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- 1 small onion, thinly sliced
- 1 piece of ginger, thinly sliced ( about 2 teaspoons)
- 4 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 jalapeño peppers, diced
- ½ cup cilantro, chopped
- 6-8 sprigs of mint, finely chopped
- Heat ghee in the Instant Pot and when it's hot, put in all the tempering spices. Once they start to sizzle, put in the thinly sliced onion and cook until the onions well-browned and crisp at the edges.
- Add in the ginger, garlic, jalapeños, and cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Add salt to taste and mix well. Remember you need enough salt to flavor the rice you'll shortly be adding as well.
- If you're using ready-made garam masala instead of whole spices, add it now and mix well.
- Add in paneer and the frozen vegetables. Spread out the paneer and veggie mixture to cover the bottom of your Instant Pot.
- Sprinkle the chopped cilantro and mint on top it.
- Spread the rinsed, drained rice across everything. Do not stir.
- Pour in the water, and gently push the rice down so it is mostly covered by the water.
- Cook on high pressure for 5 minutes, and let the pressure release naturally.
- Open and inhale deeply! Enjoy the true-to-tradition aroma of this dish and then either mix it gently from the bottom, or serve by scooping up a layer from top to bottom so you've served paneer, vegetables, herbs, and rice in every serving.
I am not a registered dietician or nutritionist. Nutritional information is provided a courtesy, and can vary depending on the exact ingredients you use.