Vegetarian Indian Biryani

Vegetarian Indian Biryani

Vegetarian Indian Biryani

If you were one of the 90,000 people who attended Natural Products Expo West at the Anaheim Convention Center earlier this month, you may have had a chance to sample my uber-popular Indian Biryani with Chickpea Risoni.

My friends at Explore Cuisine introduced this new product at the Anaheim show to rave reviews. Chickpea Risoni is rice-shaped chickpea flour (made into pasta, orzo style) produced in Italy that is gluten-free, higher in protein and fiber than white rice.

South-Asian Biryani is traditionally made with white rice and incorporates chicken, meats or fish to make a flavorful, all-encompassing one-pot dish. Here we substitute chickpea risoni for rice to provide protein for a very substantial vegetarian dish. Exotic spices, garlic, ginger, nuts, fruits, fresh herbs, caramelized shallots, and fresh lime juice all add fabulous textures and flavors.

The recipe is simple and easy…the result is layered and complex.

Vegetarian Indian Biryani Recipe

Vegetarian Indian Biryani


1 box Explore Cuisine Chickpea Risoni, cooked, rinsed and drained well

2 T. olive oil
1 ½ t. each garam masala and turmeric
2 t. garlic paste
2 t. ginger paste
2/3 c. plain yogurt or vegan yogurt
almonds, toasted and chopped
dried golden raisins and currants
fried shallot
cilantro, chopped


Heat olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add spices, garlic, and ginger. Cook for one minute, stirring. Add risoni and toss to coat with the spice mixture, fold in yogurt and add salt to taste. Then add almonds, fruit, shallot, and cilantro. Squeeze lime juice on top.

Vegetarian Indian Biryani

Fans of high-protein rice alternatives also try Red Lentil Risotto with Chorizo, recipe here.

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