Hyderabadi Chicken Biryani

Servings : Serves 4-6

The simplicity of this one-pot meal recipe is just unbelievable, especially considering the fantastic results in the end! A definite family favourite and a must-try recipe!!


  • 1 medium chicken, skin removed then cut into 8-10 pieces (1 to 1.5kg)
  • 3 cups basmati rice, washed 2-3 times then soaked for half an hour.
  • 4-5 onions, sliced and fried until golden brown
  • 2 cups yoghurt
  • 2 cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp whole black pepper
  • 4 tbsp chopped coriander leaves
  • 1 tbsp chopped mint leaves
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cloves
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 2 tbsp garlic paste
  • 2 tbsp ginger paste
  • 2 chopped green chilli
  • 1 tbsp javetri/mace (optional)
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1/2 tsp saffron
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 3-4 potatoes, peeled quartered and fried until tender (optional)


First, marinate the chicken in all the ingredients (aside from the rice and reserve half the fried onions and half the chopped coriander/mint leaves). You can marinate for 6 hours, but it's preferable to marinate overnight.

When ready to cook, take the marinated chicken out of the fridge at least an hour before you start cooking so that it comes to room temperature. In the meantime, wash then soak 3 cups of rice in water for about 20-30 mins. Soak a few saffron strands in some water and set aside. Bring a big pot of water to boil, add salt, 4 cardamom pods, 2-3 cinnamon sticks and 2-3 cloves plus about 2 tbsp. of oil.

Drain the soaked rice and add it to this water when it is boiling. Cook until the rice is about halfway done (about 6-7 minutes), remove and strain out all the water.

Now take a heavy pot/pan and add the (uncooked) chicken with all its marinade and spread it out in the bottom of the pot (I also added fried potato quarters during this stage on top of the chicken). Then add HALF of the semi-cooked rice, sprinkle some chopped coriander/mint leaves, the remaining fried onions, saffron color, then add the remaining rice over it all, cover tightly with the lid and cook for 30min. First 5 minute at high flame, next 15 minutes at medium flame and last 10 minutes at low flame.

If your pot/pan is thin, make sure you place a tava (the flat pan for making chapatis/parathas/rotis) under the pot so that your biryani doesn't burn. You can place this tava after the first 5 minutes

Serve with raita and green chutney. Enjoy!

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