Recipe by: Sandhya Puri

Source: Sandhya’s Mother’s recipe

Serves: 4

Sandhya's Indian Chicken Biryani
Sandhya’s Indian Chicken Biryani


  • 2 chicken Breasts
  • 2 pcs of chicken thigh (skinless / boneless)
  • 2 cups basmati rice
  • 2 medium onions, chopped fine
  • 7 cloves garlic, chopped fine
  • 3 cardamoms
  • 3 cloves
  • 3 dried bay leaves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 large tomatoes, pureed
  • 3 Tbsp Ghee (Indian clarified butter)
  • 1 tsp chicken tandoori masala
  • ½ tsp salt for chicken
  • ½ tsp salt for Rice
  • Water
  • 2 eggs boiled, cut into 4
  • 2 Tbsp milk
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • Pinch of saffron


  • 3 rounded tsps. yogurt
  • 1 tsp Kashmiri chili powder
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp tandoori chicken powder
  • Salt to taste

Instructions (Marinate)

indian chicken biryani 2

  • Cut the chicken breast and chicken thigh in to medium sized pieces.
  • In a bowl or box add all ingredients in the marinate and mix well. Add the chicken pieces to the marinate and set aside in the fridge overnight.


  • In a frying pan, heat up the Ghee. Add the cardamoms, cloves, bay leaves and cinnamon and fry for 30 seconds. Add the onions, garlic and 1/2 tsp salt and cook on low to medium heat till the onions turn golden brown. Make sure you mix it continuously so that the onions and garlic don’t burn.
  • Add the Chicken Tandoori Masala, tomato puree and ½ cup water. Cook the mixture for 15-20 mins till the masala reduces in quantity.
  • Add the marinated chicken and another ½ cup water and cook on a low to medium flame. After 5 minutes cover the pan and cook for 40-45 mins stirring occasionally till the masala is reduced.
  • While the chicken is cooking, wash and soak 2 cups of basmati rice with ½ tsp salt. Let it soak for some time. Cook the rice on the flame or rice cooker.
  • After cooking, go through the chicken to remove the dry spices like cardamoms, cloves, bay leaves, cinnamon etc.
  • Layer the cooked rice with the chicken in a pan and serve.

indian chicken biryani 3


  • In a small bowl take milk and heat it up in the microwave. Put the butter and saffron strands in it and let it sit aside for some time.
  • Place a flat pan on the fire and put the pot of layered chicken biryani on top of the flat pan. Cook on low fire. The point of the pan is to reduce the heat on the chicken so that it is cooked together slowly and is called Dum. If you want to cook a traditional Dum biryani (slow cooked layered biryani), you would use cooked chicken and ½ cooked rice and simmer on Dum for 1-2 hours till the rice is cooked. The point of the Dum is to ensure the heat is low enough not to burn the rice or chicken but is long enough to actually cook it. Pour the milk and saffron strands on top of the biryani while it is cooking
  • Before serving decorate with fresh coriander and boiled eggs
  • A Biryani served with Boondi Raita would be considered a full meal

Download PDF here: Indian Chicken Biryani Sandyha Puri