Vegetable Rice Recipe Indian

Vegetable pulao, also known as veg pulao, is a delightful and vibrant Indian rice dish brimming with colorful vegetables, aromatic spices, and a touch of sweetness. Perfect for vegetarians and adaptable to various preferences, this recipe offers a delicious way to explore the rich tapestry of Indian cuisine.


  • 1 cup basmati rice, rinsed (or any long-grain white rice)
  • 1.5 cups water or vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon ghee or vegetable oil
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 green chili, chopped (optional, adjust for spice preference)
  • ½ teaspoon ginger paste
  • ½ teaspoon garlic paste
  • 1 medium tomato, chopped
  • ¾ cup mixed vegetables (peas, carrots, green beans, corn kernels) – thawed if frozen
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon red chili powder (adjust for spice preference)
  • ½ teaspoon garam masala powder
  • ¼ teaspoon coriander powder
  • Salt to taste
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped (for garnish)


  1. Rinse the rice: In a fine-mesh strainer, thoroughly rinse the basmati rice under cold running water until the water runs clear. This removes excess starch, preventing the rice from becoming mushy.

  2. Prepare the vegetables: While the rice rinses, chop the onion, green chili (if using), tomato, and your chosen mixed vegetables.

  3. Heat the ghee/oil: In a medium pot or pressure cooker, heat ghee or oil over medium heat. Once hot, add the bay leaf and cumin seeds. Let them splutter for a few seconds until fragrant.

  4. Sauté the aromatics: Add the chopped onion and green chili (if using) to the pot. Sauté for 2-3 minutes until the onions become translucent.

  5. Introduce the ginger-garlic paste: Add the ginger paste and garlic paste and cook for another minute, stirring constantly, to release their aromas.

  6. Incorporate the tomato: Add the chopped tomato and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the tomato softens and releases its juices.

  7. Time for the spices: Add the turmeric powder, red chili powder, garam masala powder, and coriander powder. Stir well to coat the masala paste with the oil and spices. Cook for an additional minute, allowing the raw fragrance of the spices to cook off.

  8. Add the vegetables: Add the mixed vegetables to the pot and stir to combine with the masala paste. Sauté for 2-3 minutes, or until the vegetables are slightly softened.

  9. Season and simmer: Add the rinsed basmati rice, salt to taste, and water or vegetable broth. Stir gently to combine all the ingredients. Bring the mixture to a boil.

  10. Pressure cooker method (optional): If using a pressure cooker, close the lid securely and ensure the pressure valve is engaged. Cook on medium heat for 2 whistles (or according to your pressure cooker’s specific instructions) for basmati rice. Let the pressure release naturally for 5 minutes before carefully opening the lid.

  11. Stovetop method: If using a pot on the stovetop, reduce heat to low, cover the pot tightly with a lid, and simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until the rice is cooked through and all the liquid is absorbed.

  12. Fluff and garnish: Once cooked, remove the pot from the heat and let it stand covered for an additional 5 minutes. This allows the rice to steam and develop a fluffy texture. Fluff the rice gently with a fork and garnish with chopped fresh cilantro before serving.

Tips and Variations:

  • Vegetable options: Feel free to customize the vegetables based on your preferences. You can include cauliflower, bell peppers, green beans, peas, corn, or any other vegetables you enjoy.
  • Spiciness: Adjust the amount of red chili powder to suit your spice tolerance.
  • Flavor Boosters: For a richer flavor, add a tablespoon of cashews or raisins while sautéing the onions. You can also add a sprinkle of lemon juice before serving for a touch of tanginess.
  • Leftovers: Vegetable pulao reheats well and makes for a delicious lunch or dinner the next day.

Embrace the Culinary Adventure!

This vegetable pulao recipe offers a delightful introduction to the vibrant world of Indian cuisine. With its fragrant spices, colorful vegetables, and fluffy rice, it’s a satisfying and flavorful dish that’s perfect for vegetarians and meat-eaters alike. So, embark on your culinary adventure and enjoy the deliciousness of homemade vegetable pulao!

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