Chicken and Veggies Pilau

Servings : Serves 4-5

Easily a quick-fix healthy and filling meal that my whole family loves. You can comfortably add to or substitute the veggies in this dish with whichever veggies you prefer.

Whole spices

  • 1 tbsp whole cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp whole black pepper
  • 2 cardamom
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 small cinnamon stick


  • 3 cups basmati rice (approx 500 gm)
  • 400-500 gm boneless chicken breast or thighs, cut into chunks
  • 4 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp butter or margarine
  • 3 onions, finely chopped
  • 3 potatoes, peeled and cubed small
  • 2 carrots, grated
  • 1/2 cup peas, boiled
  • 4 tbsp sweet corn
  • 2 tomatoes, choppped finely or grated
  • 1 capsicum, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp ginger paste
  • 1 tsp garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • water/stock, as needed
  • salt to taste
  • chopped fresh dhania/coriander


Wash and then soak the rice for about 20-30 minutes.

Heat oil in a pan, add all the whole spices. When they splutter, add the onions and fry until they are golden. Next add ginger and garlic pastes, stir for a few seconds and then add the chopped tomatoes and powdered spices. Mix well then add the chicken chunks and fry in all the ingredients over high heat, stirring regularly for about 5 minutes minutes until all excess moisture evaporates and the chicken is no longer pink (if the mixture begins sticking to the bottom of the pan too quickly, add a splash or two of water or stock). Next add the potato cubes, chopped capsicum, peas, sweet corn and carrots. Stir together and allow to cook for about 3-4 minutes.

Then add water or stock (I normally require 1 and a half cups of liquid per cup of rice, so adjust as per your brand of rice). Cover and allow the water to come to a boil. Add salt and then the rice. Cook on high heat for a few minutes then lower the heat to medium and cook giving it an occasional stir until most of the water has evaporated. Then add the chopped coriander, stir one final time and then lower the heat completely. Level out the rice and then seal your pan by using a tight lid or wetting a kitchen towel and placing it over the pan then placing a lid on top of it. Allow to steam on very low heat for about 15 minutes. Switch off and serve. Remember to garnish with a little fresh coriander. Serve with yoghurt, kachumbar and tomato chutney.

Enjoy! 🙂

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