Instant Pot Chicken Biryani

Instant Pot Chicken Biryani

My wife and I love Indian cuisine, and one of our favorites is Instant Pot Chicken Biryani. It’s a dish that combines chicken, basmati rice, onions, and a variety of spices into a “one pot meal” that is absolutely delectable and gluten free.

This Instant Pot Chicken Biryani is based on the recipe developed by Archana Mundhe for The Essential Indian Instant Pot Cookbook, which, if you enjoy Indian cuisine and have an Instant Pot, is a must-have. She also has the recipe (and many more!) on her website.

Instant Pot Chicken Biryani

As with many recipes, I’ve made a variety of modifications to the Chicken Biryani ingredients and cooking instructions.

Marinade Ingredients

Chicken and Rice Ingredients

  • 3 lb boneless skinless thighs, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 3 cups Basmati Rice
  • 3 cups water
  • 3 tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 2 large onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tsp Salt
  • 1 cup raisins

I’d like to make a note here about the chili powder used in the recipe. Archana recommends — and I strongly second! — that you use Kashmiri Chili Powder. Using the same chili powder as you might for a BBQ recipe is definitely not going to taste the same!

Recipe Modifications

To prepare the Chicken Biryani, follow Archana’s recipe as you normally would after substituting the ingredients, with the following exceptions:

  • After cooking the onions and setting them aside, once the chicken is done sautéing I add the onions in a layer on top. But feel free to save some to use as garnish if you like!
  • DO NOT mix in the rice after you pour it over the chicken and onions. Just leave the rice as a layer on top, then add the water. Just DON’T FORGET the water or you’ll have a biryani disaster on your hands!
  • Add the raisins on the very top. Then you’re ready to cook under pressure!

Regarding the raisins, nearly every Indian restaurant I’ve been to serves Chicken Biryani with raisins, so I was actually a bit surprised it wasn’t in Archana’s recipe. Someone once commented to me that in India it’s typically prepared without raisins, unless it’s for a special occasion like a wedding. But since having Chicken Biryani is always a special occasion for us, I add raisins every time I make it!

Serve your awesome Instant Pot Chicken Biryani with some Riesling wine if you like, and you’ll have yourself an awesome meal!

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