This easy, healthy Mushroom Biryani makes for the perfect weekend -- or weeknight -- dinner. All you need to go with it is a vegan raita, like this Cucumber Raita. A gluten-free, soy-free recipe.
If you love a delicious vegetable biryani, you will adore this yummy mushroom biryani.
It showcases beautifully just how well mushrooms go with Indian recipes (like this Railway Mushroom Curry and Chettinad Mushroom Masala, to name just two amazing Indian mushroom dishes).
The mushroom biryani is spicy, yummy, and it makes a great one-dish meal. And the aroma around the house as it cooks is incredible!
I use a quick-blended version of my homemade cashew yogurt in this recipe, and it's quite, quite perfect. Use a storebought or homemade biryani masala to flavor the biryani.
This mushroom biryani makes a flavorful, delicious, and vegan treat for any weeknight or weekend meal.
- Dutch oven with lid or any large pot
- 1 ½ cups basmati rice (Soak the rice for 30 minutes and then wash thoroughly to remove as much of the starch as you can).
- 2 teaspoon shahjeera (or caraway seeds. Use cumin as a substitute if you can't find these)
- 3 pods green cardamom
- 2 bay leaves
- 16 oz cremini mushrooms or button mushrooms, quartered
- ½ cup raw cashews
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- ¼ cup dill or mint, chopped
- ¼ cup cilantro (chopped)
- 2 heaping tbsp biryani masala
- 2 tablespoon ginger garlic paste
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- ½ teaspoon cayenne or paprika
- ½ cup fried onions (use the kind you find in the supermarket, like French's, or at the Indian store, or make your own. I spray sliced onions with some cooking spray and roast them in the toaster oven at 350 degrees until they are brown, about 30 minutes.)
- Salt to taste
- A pinch of saffron strands soaked in ¼ cup nondairy milk
- Blend the raw cashews with 1 cup of water and the lemon juice. Set aside.
- In a saucepan, place 2 cups of water, cardamom, bay leaves, and half the shahjeera. Add salt to taste.
- Pour in the drained rice and place over a medium fire. When the water starts to boil, cover the saucepan with a tight-fitting lid and then turn down the heat to the lowest setting.
- Let the rice steam for 8 minutes. Turn off the heat.
- Heat the oil in a large saucepan with a tight-fitting lid. Add the remaining shahjeera seeds or cumin seeds and, when they start to change color, add the mint and coriander leaves. Stir to mix.
- Add the ginger garlic paste and saute another couple of minutes, stirring frequently to ensure they do not stick to the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle on some salt and pepper to season.
- Add the turmeric, cayenne or paprika, biryani masala, half of the fried onions, and the blended cashew-lemon paste. Stir well to mix and let it cook for a minute. Add salt.
- Add the mushrooms to the saucepan and stir to coat with the spices. If the mixture looks too dry, add ½ cup of water or vegetable stock. Let the sauce come to a boil.
- Turn off the heat. Spread the cooked rice on top of the sauce in an even layer. Sprinkle on the remaining fried onions and the saffron with the milk.
- Cover with a tight lid. If the lid you have doesn't fit snugly, you can cover with a sheet of aluminum foil and then place the lid on top to make it as airtight as possible.
- Turn the heat to high for about three minutes, then lower it to the lowest setting, and let the biryani cook, undisturbed, for 20 minutes. Turn off the heat and let it stand for at least 10 minutes, uncovered, before serving.
I am enjoying your recipes, but have a question about the caraway seeds in the rice. I found the seeds too hard when eating the biryani. Am I doing something wrong?
Hi Susan, The caraway seeds are small and you shouldn't be able to even know they're there--are you using the right seed? Otherwise you can just leave them out, or sub with cumin. Cheers.
Hope you're well!
Thank you for an excellent, flavourful recipe. My husband and I are just beginning to veganize our lives and we are so grateful for your recipes. Can't imagine the effort behind each and every one - so, thank you!
I made this today, exactly according to your instructions. Didn't have saffron nor mint, but man! This was delicious!!! And easy!!! Next time I will make sure I have the omitted ingredients on hand because I can imagine the flavour would be even better. Which is saying a lot... because we loved tonight's dinner 🙂
Hi..Vashali could you elaborate what spices are in the briyani masala..
Love all your recipies. Thanks
Hi Vaishali, I just love this recipe. I made your other biryani recipe in the past, and wanted to try it out as soon as I saw this. Everyone, my husband and kids, were licking their fingers. And no oil, this is amazing.
Thanks, Roshni, glad you liked it!
Can Brown Rice be used for this recipe?
Mukta, yes, you definitely can. Precook the brown rice which would take longer, of course, and follow the rest of the instructions.
Thank you SO much for this wonderful blog. I am learning so much abut the origins of this cuisine, and as someone who is lukewarm about the cooking process, this is quite a feat indeed!
Mushroom biryani looks so YUM!
Mushroom biryani taste so much like meat. I always make mushroom biryani when we have friends(non-vegetarians) for dinner.
This sounds delicious, I am definitely going to try it out. I really like your blog, although I am not Indian I grew up eating almost exclusively Indian food (long story) so your description resonated with me. (Original comment linked to a wrong blog)
This sounds delicious, I am definitely going to try it out. I really like your blog, although I am not Indian I grew up eating almost exclusively Indian food (long story) so your description resonated with me.
happy New Year to you and your family. That was one lovely post about some great times in the past! I remember the very first time I made Tomato Rasam. I say this because I am a Rasam Lover and I can sip cups and cups of piping hot rasam and enjoy the comfort it gives. As I seasoned the cumin, hing and mustard in a little ghee and added the chopped cilantro I was thoroughly overjoyed. Everytime I season Rasam these days I remember that first whiff of the rasam i made! Low fat biriyani looks amazing.
Shobha, I am a rasam lover too, and like you I can sip cups. Especially when there's a little ginger added to the mix. Hot rasam is a great food to mark one of life's milestones-- thanks for sharing your memory.
Lovely memories!! I started cooking very early as mom wanted me to be very independent. She did the same thing with my brother 🙂 I still remember my attempts of making bhakri. I also have various memories just like you that I associated with various smells, tastes. But for the longest time, I hated cooking, now I myself can't believe that!!
This is really good recipe, will try soon.
Hi Mints, It's hard to imagine you once hated to cook, given all the great recipes you share on your blog. I for one am glad you got over that phase and learned to love cooking. 🙂
Super recipe...looks flavorful & delicious..
wow love the color... looks so much like restaurant style!!! Love the pictures, espescially the last one!!! so droolworthy!!!
Ongoing Event - Mission - Breakfast
Happy 2012 Vaishali! finally getting some time after all the holidays to catch up.. the biryani looks delicious!
I did not cook regular when at home ever.. the first things i cooked were things like veggie manchurian, chopsuey and the likes:). i finally picked up some roti/paratha making in the weeks before heading out to work in a different town. and then everything else just came by the need of neccesity to eat while masters here. I loved cooking, so i would cook up the days meals at 3 in the night in exchange for all cleaning duties done by my non cooking roomies:))
Hi Richa, happy 2013 to you. This really is the story of us desis living abroad, isn't it? We learn by necessity and then fall in love with it. 🙂 All's well that ends well.
loved your memorable time with the family. Every time I make Nepali food, it reminds me times with my parents, and how life was back home. Biryani is one of those things, I am really scared of making because its one of my fav and im afraid to ruin the experience for me by trying to make it healthy and all that. your mushroom biryani with coconut milk sounds delicious!
Hi Dixya, biryanis are, counter to their rather glamorous image, almost foolproof. At worst your rice will be a little mushy or the sauce too spicy or not spicy enough, but how bad can a pot of rice and veggies mixed up with delicious spices taste? I say go for it!
Wish you and your family Happy 2013!
I am thankful to food blogs like yours and few other that I visit. Has helped me immensely to cook better.
I never cooked while I was in India, I would turn the stove probably for coffee or tea at times. I come to US and that is when I ventured into cooking. I have come a long way now in about 6-7 years of cooking. My first experiment in the kitchen was to make Thalipeeth as brunch, one of my fav food. Hubby and I were starving so I started to make thalipeeth only to realise it would not come out of the pan as one whole roti instead take it out as broken pieces some burnt and few spots undercooked....and I made hubby wait and wait for that one big circle roti to come off, which never happened BTW!
Never gave up tried after few weeks with some alterations and it was a hit 🙂
I have many failed intial experiments in the kitchen :))
Thanks for sharing such yummy recipes Vaishali. I am a vegetarian so your blog is very resourceful to me.
Sheels, what a great story about the thalipeeth and thanks for sharing it. Never giving up is key in the kitchen, I agree. 🙂 Happy you've found the blog useful.