A homemade biryani masala to make delicious Indian rice dishes like vegetable biryani, vegan dum aloo biryani and eggplant biryani. This aromatic spice mix takes minutes to make, and rewards you with amazing flavor.
A reader asked me for my Biryani Masala recipe, so here it is.
I hadn't shared this recipe before because it does include ingredients that most people in the West who cook Indian food would likely not have in their pantries, and it can be easier to just buy a pre-made biryani spice mix off the shelf or online.
That said, however, there really is no storebought version that can compare with a good, fresh homemade spice mix. This one smells so amazing, you will literally want to eat it by the spoonful (although you shouldn't. Seriously).
The ingredients used in this biryani masala are not at all hard to find if you live within range of an Indian grocery store or if you are able to buy them online. There could be some things here that you haven't heard of before. But if you do go to the trouble of getting them, it will be well worth it, and once you get the whole spices, they will keep for ages.
This biryani masala mix recipe is enough for two to three uses and that is good enough because you don't really want to keep the mix around for too long after grinding it up, for the best flavor. Once spices are ground, the essential oils that give them their flavor and aroma will dissipate. To delay that process, you should store the spice in an airtight jar and a refrigerator would be preferable, although on the shelf in a cool, dark pantry would be fine too.
More biryani recipes
Biryani Masala Spice Mix
- ¼ cup coriander seeds
- 2 tablespoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon shah jeera (black cumin seeds)
- 2 dry bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon dagad phool (also called stone flower)
- 2 inch cinnamon stick
- 10 cloves
- 1 teaspoon mace
- 1 tablespoon peppercorns
- 7 pods green cardamom pods
- 2 pods black cardamom
- 2 teaspoon kasoori methi (dry fenugreek leaves)
- 2 tablespoon fried onion (use the kind you get from the store, like French's, or at the Indian store. Onions fried at home would contain too much oil which could go rancid over time)
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 2 teaspoon cayenne
- 1 teaspoon dry pomegranate seeds (anardana)
- 4 dry plums (chopped into smaller pieces)
- Place all the ingredients except the plums in a spice grinder or a blender. Process into an even but coarse powder.
- Mix in the plums and store in an airtight jar, in the refrigerator or in a cool, dark place in your pantry or kitchen.
I can't wait to try this, but I am not sure; does dry plum mean prunes, as we would have in the US? Those seem too moist to keep in a jar. Could you point me to a product you like? Thank you so much, I'm very excited to try this!
Do you dry roast the spices before grinding them? Thanks
No need to roast!
I am a big lover of Indian food and I have been following you for quite a long time. This masala seems amazing. I ordered the 3 spices missing in my pantry and I'll try it... Tank you!!
Awesome, so happy you're trying it!
Thank you for sharing amazing recipes
Especially the Briyani spice
I love briyani
Thanks Lallie! 🙂
Thank you for this recipe. I love biryani. I'm looking forward to having such fresh spices to make the biryani recipes you have provided. Thank you!
Thanks, Maggie, hope you try it! Nothing can beat a freshly ground spice mix. 🙂
I keep most every thing to make south and north indian dishes.But your Masala spice mix extends more to the buying, more jars and so on, not only that these are used not very often. I was in Chennasi recently stayed 3 months, Briyani restuarents are poping up every corner of the city. Last year we were in chennai also , happened to take home Thalapakattu Briyani, Very bad one, loaded with way too much masala . Have you ever heard of Ambur briyani
my home town is 18 miles away from it. good briyanis less with spices, pale color all those really good, prowen over the years of existence. read Hindu paper article.
Hi, keep in mind you don't use up all of the spices in one recipe -- like it says in the instructions, you have enough here for at least three liberal uses, and perhaps many more. Most biryani recipes, including all I post, usually call for between 1 tsp to 2 tbsp of masala, which is not a lot if you're making biryani with 2-3 cups of rice. Otherwise your biryani won't have any fragrance or aroma.
Is there a measurement for the stone flower/dagad phool? And I'm assuming the pomegranate seeds are dried, right? Thanks!
1 tsp dagad phool! And yes dry pomegranate seeds.