Exotic Chicken Biryani Recipe to Impress Your Taste Buds

Are you looking for a flavorful and satisfying meal that will transport your taste buds to the vibrant streets of India? Look no further than my Chicken Biryani with Cucumber Raita Recipe!

This traditional dish is made with fragrant basmati rice, tender chicken breast, and a medley of aromatic spices such as cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and cardamom. The dish is then topped off with the refreshing and cooling Cucumber Raita, a yogurt-based sauce with chopped cucumbers, fresh mint leaves, and roasted cumin powder.

As an Israeli chef who has been trained in the art of Indian cuisine, I can assure you that this recipe is not only delicious but also easy to make at home. With a few simple ingredients and some basic cooking skills, you can elevate your weeknight dinners or impress your dinner guests with this exciting and exotic recipe. So grab your apron, turn up the heat, and let’s get cooking!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Chicken Biryani With Cucumber Raita
Chicken Biryani With Cucumber Raita

If you’re looking for a delicious and flavorful dish to add to your dinner repertoire, look no further than this Chicken Biryani with Cucumber Raita recipe. Not only is it bursting with warm spices and flavorful herbs, but it’s also incredibly easy to make and perfect for feeding a crowd.

One of the reasons I love this recipe is because of its versatility. You can easily swap out the protein for lamb or mutton if you prefer, or even make it vegetarian by omitting the chicken altogether. The fragrant basmati rice is flavored with a unique blend of spices like cinnamon, cloves, and cardamom, while the tender chicken breast balances perfectly with the tangy cucumber raita.

And let’s talk about that raita for a minute – it’s the perfect pairing for this biryani. Made with fresh cucumbers, smooth yogurt, and zesty lemon juice, it cools down the spiciness of the dish while adding an interesting texture. It’s so good you’ll be spooning extra on top of your rice without even realizing it!

Moreover, this recipe uses ingredients that are readily available in most grocery stores. From plain yogurt to spices like cumin and turmeric, everything can be found at a nearby supermarket so you don’t have to spend too much time searching around.

Finally, this recipe is perfect for those who meal prep or cook ahead of time. You can easily double or triple this recipe to have leftovers throughout the week or even freeze portions for later enjoyment.

In summary, if you’re looking for a flavorful one-pot dish that will excite your taste buds and is easy to make, then this Chicken Biryani with Cucumber Raita recipe is something you shouldn’t miss.

Ingredient List

 Behold the tantalizing aroma of my Chicken Biryani, hot off the stove.
Behold the tantalizing aroma of my Chicken Biryani, hot off the stove.

Ingredient List

This Chicken Biryani With Cucumber Raita Recipe is packed with a whole host of mouth-watering spices and herbs. Here are the ingredients required to make this delicious dish:

For the Biryani:

  • 2 cups basmati rice, rinsed and drained
  • 4 chicken breasts, cut into cubes
  • 2 onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 3 cardamom pods, crushed
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cube chicken bouillon
  • Salt to taste (about 1 tsp)
  • 3 cups water

For the Cucumber Raita:

  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 cup cucumber, grated
  • Salt to taste (about 1 tsp)
  • Cumin powder (roasted) – 1/4 teaspoon
  • Few sprigs of fresh mint leaves, finely chopped

The recipe also calls for sunflower oil or any vegetable oil, butter (optional), a large onion (chopped), fresh ginger (finely chopped), red onions, tomatoes, a small red onion (thinly sliced), lemon juice and chicken bouillon.

The Recipe How-To

 One look at this colorful dish and you’ll be transported to the bazaars of Hyderabad.
One look at this colorful dish and you’ll be transported to the bazaars of Hyderabad.

Now that you have gathered all the ingredients needed for this recipe, let me guide you on how to make an aromatic and flavorful Chicken Biryani with Cucumber Raita that will surely satisfy everyone’s cravings!

Step 1: Cook the Basmati Rice

  • Rinse and soak 2 cups of basmati rice in water for 30 minutes. Drain water and set aside.
  • In a large pot, bring to boil 8 cups of water, 2 cinnamon sticks, 4 whole cloves, 4 green cardamom pods, and 2 teaspoons of salt.
  • Add the rice into the boiling water and stir well.
  • Let the rice cook over medium-high heat for about 10-12 minutes until it’s almost done (around 70%).
  • Drain the rice in a colander and keep it aside.

Step 2: Cook the Chicken

  • Add 3 tablespoons of sunflower oil to a large non-stick pan or skillet over medium heat.
  • Once hot, add 2 medium-sized onions, chopped, and sauté until they turn golden brown.
  • Add in some crushed ingredients such as 4 garlic cloves and 1 inch fresh ginger, finely chopped, stir for a minute until fragrant.
  • Add in 2 small chopped tomatoes followed by boneless cubed chicken pieces (500g chicken breasts) to the pan. Mix well and cook for 5 minutes until chicken is no longer pink.
  • Next, add in spices – 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder, 1/2 teaspoon of red chili powder, 1 teaspoon of ground cumin powder, 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper, 3/4 teaspoon of garam masala, and salt to taste.
  • Cook everything until soft but not too mushy. Once done, remove from fire.

Step 3: Layering the Biryani

  • Preheat your oven to 180°C.
  • Take a deep baking dish or Dutch oven, drizzle with some oil at the bottom to avoid any sticking of biryani.
  • Layer half the prepared basmati rice evenly into your baking dish, then layer with all cooked chicken pieces including its juice.
  • On top add another layer of remaining rice mixture evenly.
  • Before putting this into oven add roasted cashew nuts and chicken tikkas all over cooked biryani evenly. If desired can sprinkle little more Garam Masala over that nuts-tikka layer.
    Note: To prepare chicken tikkas use boneless small bite-size pieces marinated with basic Tikka Masala like – hung curd (thick yogurt), ginger-garlic paste, red chili powder, cumin-coriander powder etc
  • Cover dish tightly with aluminium foil wrap or put its lid on top so that biryani becomes fully sealed from all sides. Place this

Substitutions and Variations

 Savor every bite of the perfectly cooked, flavor-infused chicken and rice.
Savor every bite of the perfectly cooked, flavor-infused chicken and rice.

A great thing about cooking is that it offers ample space to experiment and get creative. With biryani being an excellent dish on its own, there are a few substitutions and variations you can make to make it your own. Here are some of my recommendations:

– Meat replacements: If you prefer something other than chicken, lamb or mutton make for great meat substitutes. You can also use veggies like cauliflower, peas, carrots and potatoes for vegetarian options.

– Dairy alternatives: For those with lactose intolerance, you can swap the plain yogurt with almond or coconut yoghurt for that creamy texture.

– Spice level: Biryani usually comes packed with lots of spices and herbs, but if you’d like to tone down the heat, use less chili powder. You could even leave it out completely if you’re serving to someone who can’t handle the heat.

– Raita Options: The coolness of cucumber raita balances off the spice of the biryani well. However, you could try other raita options like onion raita, mint sauce or even a simple vegetable raita made with grated cucumber and yogurt sour.

Remember, these are just suggestions. Don’t be afraid to try different ingredients or add your own spin to make this recipe truly yours.

Serving and Pairing

 The aromatic spices and herbs are the secret to our delicious dish.
The aromatic spices and herbs are the secret to our delicious dish.

Once you have made the perfect chicken biryani with the cucumber raita recipe, it’s time to think about how you can best serve and pair this delicious dish. The biryani is a one-pot meal that is incredibly filling and flavorful, so you do not need to serve it with any other sides.

The cucumber raita is the perfect side dish to serve with your chicken biryani. It’s a cooling accompaniment that pairs perfectly with the rich flavors of the biryani. You can also add some mint sauce on the side for an extra burst of flavor.

If you want to elevate your serving game, sprinkle some fresh mint leaves on top of your chicken biryani before serving. The mint will add a pop of freshness that complements the spices in the biryani perfectly.

When it comes to pairing your chicken biryani with a drink, go for a refreshing lassi, an Indian yogurt-based drink. A sweet mango lassi or a salty lassi will complement the flavors of the biryani perfectly.

Lastly, for all those meat lovers out there, you can also use this recipe as a base for lamb or mutton biryani. The spices and herbs work well with any kind of meat, so feel free to swap out the chicken for lamb or mutton to make this dish more suitable for your taste buds.

Overall, chicken biryani with cucumber raita is a complete meal that has everything from protein to carbs and vegetables. Serve it hot and enjoy it with your loved ones!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Whether it’s a lazy Sunday or a frenzied weekday, make time for some Chicken Biryani!
Whether it’s a lazy Sunday or a frenzied weekday, make time for some Chicken Biryani!

One of the best parts about chicken biryani is that you can make it ahead of time and let the flavors meld together even more. You can store this dish in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.

To reheat, add a splash of water or chicken stock and heat over a low flame until heated through. Avoid using a microwave as it can dry out the dish.

If you have leftover cucumber raita, it can also be stored in an airtight container for up to 2-3 days in the fridge. Mix thoroughly before serving again.

Make sure to store the biryani and raita separately to avoid any sogginess or loss of texture.

If you’re planning on making this dish for meal prep, you can divide it into individual servings and store them in separate containers to make reheating even more convenient.

Tips for Perfect Results

 A spoonful of cucumber raita is a refreshing addition to each mouthful.
A spoonful of cucumber raita is a refreshing addition to each mouthful.

To make sure that your chicken biryani with cucumber raita turns out well and tastes delicious, here are some tips to bear in mind:

Firstly, when you cook the rice, add a few whole spices like cinnamon, cloves, and cardamom. This will give the rice a beautiful aroma and flavor that complements the rest of the dish.

Secondly, make sure to use a heavy-bottomed pot or pan to cook the biryani. Since this recipe has multiple layers of ingredients, it’s important to cook it in something sturdy that can withstand the weight without burning.

Thirdly, after you cook your chicken, leave it to rest for a few minutes before shredding or chopping it up. This will help keep the meat tender and juicy.

Fourthly, when you’re cooking the onions for this recipe, make sure they’re cooked down properly so that they melt in your mouth instead of being chewy. This requires patience and time but it’s worth it for the depth of flavor it adds to the dish.

Fifthly, when making cucumber raita, be sure to use thick and creamy plain yogurt along with fresh cucumbers. Add in other ingredients like spices or herbs to build up the flavor profile.

Sixthly, if you’re making this recipe for guests or any special occasion, consider serving it with extra sides such as naan bread or samosas for a complete meal experience.

Lastly, feel free to make substitutions based on your preferences or dietary requirements. For example, you could swap out chicken for lamb or mutton to make lamb biryani instead. The key is to experiment and find what works best for you while still keeping the essence of this flavorful Indian dish intact.


As you start cooking this tasty chicken biryani with cucumber raita recipe, you might have some questions or face certain challenges. In this section, we cover some of the most common FAQs that home cooks encounter while making this delicious dish. Whether you’re wondering how to store leftovers or substitute ingredients, we’ve got you covered. Read on to make your biryani cooking experience completely hassle-free.

Do you mix raita with biryani?

Looking for an easy-to-make and delicious side dish to complement your biryani, pulao, kebabs, or snacks? Give raita a try! This refreshing dish is made with curd, veggies, and a blend of spices and herbs, making it a perfect accompaniment to your main course.

What is cucumber raita made of?

In Indian cuisine, we prepare a delightful condiment called cucumber raita by combining two key ingredients – curd (yogurt) and cucumber. To add some zing, we incorporate roasted cumin powder, chat masala, rock salt, or black salt, while also giving it beautiful garnishing with cilantro or mint. This dip, or sauce, is known for its invigorating taste that tantalizes the taste buds.

How to eat chicken biryani with raita?

To prevent the vessel from collapsing due to the atmospheric pressure during cooling, it is recommended to make a small opening in the seal of the aata. Later when you are ready to savor your meal, you can crack open the dum and indulge in the delightful aromas of freshly steamed biryani. This can be enjoyed with a side of refreshing raita and crunchy papad.

Is cucumber raita the same as tzatziki?

Raita and Tzatziki are two similar dips that have some slight differences. The Indian Raita and the Greek Tzatziki share many similarities, but the main variation lies in the type of yogurt used in each recipe. Raita is typically made with plain yogurt, while tzatziki requires thicker Greek yogurt. As a result, the consistency of the two sauces varies, with Raita being thinner and tzatziki being thicker.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this chicken biryani with cucumber raita recipe is a must-try for anyone who loves bold and aromatic Indian flavors. With the perfect amounts of spices and herbs, this dish is sure to please your taste buds and impress any dinner guests. The refreshing cucumber raita adds a cool balance to the warm and savory biryani.

What’s more, this recipe is easy to make with simple ingredients that can be found at any grocery store. Plus, with the helpful tips and variations provided, you can customize the dish to your liking or accommodate any dietary restrictions.

So why not add some variety and adventure to your next meal? Give this chicken biryani with cucumber raita recipe a try, and you won’t be disappointed. Happy cooking!

Chicken Biryani With Cucumber Raita

Chicken Biryani With Cucumber Raita Recipe

This is a recipe for a delicious and authentic Chicken Biryani. I have combined and modified a few recipes to create this, and after trial and error I am very happy with it. There is a lot of preperation involved, but well worth the effort! Enjoy!
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Prep Time 1 hr 30 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Calories 578.1 kcal


  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 large red onions, chopped finely
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped finely
  • 2 teaspoons fresh gingerroot, grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 medium tomatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 3 teaspoons plain yogurt
  • 3 teaspoons fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 4 chicken breasts, cut into cubes
  • 1 large red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 2 cups chicken bouillon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cucumber, peeled and seeded, then chopped into chunks
  • 2 small onions, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tablespoon fresh gingerroot, grated
  • 2 tablespoons of fresh mint, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 cups plain yogurt (at least 2%)


  • To make the Raita, blend together the cucumber, onion, garlic, ginger, mint, and lemon juice. Pour the mixture into a bowl, and add yogurt. Stir together until smooth, and then refrigerate.
  • We want to create brown butter. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat for ~15 minutes, stirring constantly, until the butter turns a light brown colour. Set aside.
  • In a large non-stick skilled, add 2/3 of the brown butter over medium heat. Add the potatoes and cook until browned, then remove and set aside.
  • Add the onion, garlic, and ginger and cook for 15-20 minutes, or until onion is very soft, stirring occasionally.
  • Add your ground chili, chili flakes, ground black pepper, ground turmeric, ground cumin, ground cardamom, salt, and tomatoes. Cook for 5-10 minutes stirring frequently.
  • Reduce heat to a low setting, and add yogurt, mint, and the cinnamon stick. Cook covered until ingredients are very soft and tomatoes mixed inches Stir occasionally, allow 30-45 minutes for this step. Add a small amount of water if the mixture is sticking to your skillet.
  • Wash rice and set aside to drain in a colander until needed.
  • Add the chicken breast cubes and mix in the sauce to coat it, then cover and cook for another 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • In a large skillet or pot, heat the remaining browned butter, then add onion and cook until golden. Add ground cardamom, cloves, cinnamon stick, ground ginger, and rice (drained earlier) Mix until the rice is well coated.
  • Heat chicken bouillon and salt in a pot to boiling, then pour into the rice mixture, stirring well.
  • Add the chicken mixture and potatoes to the rice, and carefully mix together.
  • Heat to a boil, and then cover, turning heat to very low. Allow 20 minutes to cook rice.Serve immediately with Raita (Naan is also a good addition to the meal).

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 411gCalories: 578.1kcalCarbohydrates: 54.3gProtein: 28.8gFat: 28.1gSaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 110.8mgSodium: 1349.8mgFiber: 5.8gSugar: 9.9g
Keyword < 4 Hours, Chicken, Chicken Breast, From Scratch, Indian, Meat, Onions, Poultry, Stove Top, Vegetable
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