January 6, 2014

Vegetable Pulao Recipe - How to make Veg Pulao in Pressure Cooker

Learn how to make easy and quick one pot version of vegetable pulao (veg pulao) in a pressure cooker with lots of vegetables, spices, and coconut milk.
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Vegetable pulao is beautiful in its simplicity and often when I am just too lazy to even decide what's for dinner or what to pack for TH's lunch box, I just make a quick veg pulao. It really doesn't need any side dish but won't complain if you make it share space with some dal or vegetable curry. Although I not a fan of cooking rice in a pressure cooker, I can't deny that making vegetable pulao in a pressure cooker in under 30 mins (if you don't count soaking time for rice) is just too good to pass up due to snobbiness. I have experimented quite a bit with the amount of vegetables to rice ratio, how much water to add when cooking rice in a pressure cooker, what vegetables to choose so that they don't cook to a mush, and this recipe below is the ultimate winner. It's also easily adaptable so feel free to give it your own spin.

vegetable pulao-how to make veg pulao recipe

However, if you have some time in hand, I'd definitely recommend this vegetable pulao recipe where you cook the rice separately and add it on later. I love how the grains don't clump together and the basmati flavour shines through. You can also make vegetable biryani and vegetable fried rice in a similar manner, either on the stove top or in a rice cooker.


Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes
Serves 3-4

2 tbsp of ghee
1 bay leaf
4-5 cloves
3-4 whole green cardamom, crushed
A piece of cinnamon
1/2 cup of onions, sliced
1 tbsp of minced garlic
2 cups of chopped vegetables (I use carrot, beans, peas, baby corn)
1 cup of basmati or any long-grained rice
1 cup of thin coconut milk (optional, replace with water if not using)
1 cup of water
1 tsp of red chilli powder
3 tbsp of chopped coriander leaves, for garnish


1. Heat a pressure cooker or pressure pan. Add the ghee and whole spices. Fry until fragrant - about 20 seconds.
vegetable pulao-how to make veg pulao recipe

2. Add the onions and garlic and saute until the onions turn pink and soft - about 2 mins.
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3. Add the vegetables and give it a good mix. Saute for 2 mins.
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4. Add the washed rice and mix again. You can soak the rice for 30 mins in water if you have the time. This makes the grains cook up softer. I often omit this and don't really care about the difference in texture. If you have time, do it.
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5. Add coconut milk (if using) and water.
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6. Top off with red chilli powder and salt and mix well.
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7. Bring this mixture to a light bowl.
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8. Cover the pressure cooker and wait and set the heat to medium low. Wait until steam leaves the vent and then add the "weight". Let the veg pulao cook for 2 whistles (about 12 mins).
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Let the steam escape completely bt leaving the pressure cooker along and then open. Stir the rice gently to combine and add the chopped coriander leaves. I sometimes add one more tsp of ghee at this stage to make the pulao more fragrant.
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- the amount of water required can change based on the quality of rice and the temperature you cook the pulao. 1:2 ratio of rice:water generally works well for me. my veg pulao recipe also has a higher amount of vegetables than normal as you can see in the pictures. I prefer it this way but feel free to adjust that to your liking too
- i'd urge you not to overcook the rice. nothing tastes as bland and meh as overcooked rice.
- experiment with different combinations of vegetables
- if you add coconut milk to cook the veg pulao, refrigerate leftovers immediately and consume within a day
- serve veg pulao with any paneer side dish, dal tadka, or vegetable korma

For vegetable pulao recipe in Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati, Kannada, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu, etc, please use the Google translate button in the sidebar.

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