Vegetable Biryani with Cashews & Mint

Cooking time
Serves4-8 people
Vegetarians Gluten-free diets
Vegetable Biryani with Cashews & Mint

Fragrant biryanis are fabulous for sharing with friends and family. This veggie biryani is made with marinated veg and white basmati rice slowly cooked till tender and fluffy. Serve it topped with cashews, mint, coriander. With creamy, cooling yogurt on the side.


  • 270g white basmati rice
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • A thumb of ginger
  • 1 lime
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • A pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 250g French beans
  • 2 red peppers
  • 3 carrots
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 6 cardamom pods
  • 1 onion
  • 60g cashews
  • A handful of coriander
  • A handful of mint
  • 450g Greek style yogurt

Prep: 30 mins| Cook: 45 mins

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1. Tip the basmati rice into a large bowl and cover with cold water. Whisk the rice till the water goes cloudy (this is the starch). Drain the rice, tip it back into the bowl and cover with more cold water. Whisk again, drain, then tip back into the bowl. Cover with fresh cold water and set aside to soak.
2. Peel and grate the garlic and ginger. Scoop them into a large bowl. Finely grate in the lime zest. Add the cumin, garam masala, turmeric and a pinch of cayenne with 3 tbsp oil. Season with salt and pepper. Stir into a marinade.
3. Trim the woody ends from the French beans, then chop into bite-sized pieces. Halve the red peppers, scoop out the seeds and white pith, then roughly chop. Trim and peel the carrots, then thickly slice. Add the veg to the marinade and stir to mix. Set aside to marinate.
4. Fill and boil the kettle. Preheat your oven to 200°C/Fan 180°C/Gas 6. Drain the rice and tip it into a pan. Pour in 550ml hot water and add a pinch of salt. Set the pan on a high heat and bring to the boil, then turn the heat down, pop on a lid and simmer the rice for 5 mins. Take off the heat and set aside, lid off.
5. While the rice cooks, peel and finely chop the onion. Add 1 tbsp oil to a large, ovenproof casserole dish on a medium heat. Add the onion, season and fry, stirring occasionally, for 5–6 mins till golden brown.
6. Add the veg and their marinade to the pan with 2 tbsp cold water and fry, stirring regularly, for 4-5 mins till the veg are starting to soften. Add the cinnamon stick and cardamom pods to the pan. Tip in the par-boiled rice and stir well to mix. Take the pan off the heat and cover with a layer of foil. Pop a lid on, slide into the oven and bake for 30 mins, till the rice is tender and cooked through.
7. Roughly chop the cashews. Pick the coriander and mint leaves off their stalks and roughly chop any large leaves.
8. Divide the biryani between warm plates or bowls. Top with the cashews and chopped herbs. Serve with yogurt.
9. Get Ahead
You can chop and marinate the veg the night before you want to cook the biriyani. Transfer them to a tub or dish and keep in the fridge. The marinade contains turmeric, so store the veg and their marinade in a glass, pyrex or china dish or bowl to avoid staining the dish.
10. The Right Pan For The Job
If you don't have a casserole dish, fry the onion and veg in large pan, then transfer to an ovenproof dish. Add the cinnamon stick, cardamom pods and rice. Cover with a double layer of foil and bake.
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