We never really grew up eating biryani at home. But it always sounded so exotic– layers of saffron infused rice with meat or vegetables in a gravy, mmm.
Then in my late teen years, my mom found a recipe and started making handi biryani in her kitchen. We were in love! But she I always noticed how time consuming it was. She fried the vegetables, made the gravy, cooked the rice, then assembled them all, added the toppings, and lightly baked them in the oven. It resulted in a lovely meal full of tender vegetables, spicy gravy, crispy onions and a delicate aroma of saffron. Multiple spices and ingredients with flavors that mesh beautifully to make a dish complete on its own, with some raita ofcourse.
Given the amount of ingredients and steps I only made this with sufficient time on my hands, which wasn’t often. But then the life changing event occurred- the Instant Pot arrived!
Well that and the fact that I decided that this biryani needed to turn into a healthier fare. So out go the frying steps and the rice. Welcome quinoa!
Thus was invented the Instant Pot Vegetable Quinoa Biryani- same flavors, healthy, and made in half the time. WIN!
If you don’t have the Instant Pot, use a regular pressure cooker and follow the same steps. To save on chopping time, use frozen vegetables instead of fresh ones. Don’t let the number of ingredients intimidate you, it’s super easy I promise! Happy cooking 🙂