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Layered Rice and Veggies with Spices. A delicious and flavorful dish. Soy Free, Gluten Free and Vegan Recipe. Jump to Recipe

Layered Rice and Veggies with Spices. A delicious and flavorful dish. Soy Free, Gluten Free and Vegan Recipe. #glutenfree #veganricha #vegan

Biryani is a set of rice-based foods made with spices, rice (usually basmati) and meat, fish, eggs or vegetables. The name is derived from the Persian word beryā(n) which means “fried” or “roasted”.

The rice and meat/vegetables are cooked separately and then layered and cooked or baked to set the layers and served with Raita(spiced yogurt), pickles, salads,curries and other sides depending on the region. Biryanis also usually have a lot of spices which bring up the heat level. The spices are not like chili spice which hits the tongue and lips. These spices make you feel the heat and the strong taste from the inside out. You have to eat a good Biryani to know what I mean:) . This dish is soy free and gluten free.


This is my version of Vegetable Biryani. I have used moderate amount of spices. They can be increased or decreased depending on your taste preference.

Some other Biryanis I posted a long while back.

Ricelove Biryani (Layered Rice and Veggies with Spices) Vegan.

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By: Vegan Richa
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 1 hour
Servings: 4 servings
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Gluten-free, Soy-free, Vegan
Layered Rice and Veggies with Spices. A delicious and flavorful dish. Soy Free, Gluten Free and Vegan Recipe. 
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  • 1 cup long grain Basmati Rice
  • 1.25 cups water
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 inch cinnamon stick
  • 2 green cardamoms
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon oil


  • 1/2 medium onion, (thin slices, cooked to a golden brown)
  • 1/2 cup cilantro leaves
  • 1/4 cup mint leaves
  • 1/3 cup cashews, (small pieces)
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/4 teaspoon saffron soaked in a Tablespoon of water or non dairy milk for 10 minutes


  • 2 cups veggies, (I used cauliflower florets, zucchini, carrots and potatoes. add green beans, peas, broccoli, any chunky veggies of choice!)
  • 4 tablespoons Cashew/non dairy Yogurt or Cashew cream+1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ginger paste or minced ginger
  • 1 teaspoon garlic paste or minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon minced Serrano chili pepper, (more or less by taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste

Spices/biryani masala:

  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 green cardamoms
  • 1 black cardamoms
  • 3 cloves
  • 2-3 black peppercorns
  • 1/2 inch cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg or mace, (optional)



  • Wash and drain rice and keep for 10 minutes.
  • Bring water to a boil, add the spices, rice and oil and salt and mix slightly.
  • Let the rice cook to about almost done. Keep ready


  • Cook/roast, cashews and raisins in a little oil and keep aside.
  • Cook the onions till golden brown and keep.


  • In a large pan, add all the spices and dry roast them for 2-3 minutes on medium heat, stirring almost continuously till they release a strong aroma. Blend/grind them coarsely and keep. You can get Biryani masala spice mix from an Indian store and use 2 teaspoons or more, but it doesnt taste as good as the fresh spices!
  • In the same pan, add 2 teaspoons of oil and heat at medium heat.
  • Add in the minced ginger, garlic, chili and turmeric and mix for a few seconds.
  • Add in the veggies and salt an mix well.
  • Let veggies cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Mix the roasted spice mix in cashew yogurt or cream and add to the vegetables.
  • Mix well, adjust salt and spice.
  • Cook covered on low heat for 10-15 minutes stirring occasionally, till the vegetables are tender. Taste for spice, make and add more roasted biryani spice mix if you like. The veggies should be on the spicier side. The spice gets distributed when layered with rice.


  • Grease a deep baking dish.
  • Put a layer(1/4 inch) of rice at the bottom.
  • Add a layer of the spicy vegetables
  • Top it off with another rice layer.
  • Sprinkle the saffron water on the rice.
  • Top the rice with the brown onions, cashews and raisins(garnish) and any other preferred dried fruits.
  • Drop some cilantro and mint(you can add these after baking as well).
  • Bake covered (foil or baking dish cover) for 10-15 minutes at 350 degrees F to set. (20-25 minutes, if you prepped everything a day before and the layers are not already warm/hot). You can also cook in heavy bottom deep pan on low heat on the stove, covered for 15 minutes.
  • Sprinkle lemon juice and serve hot with pickles or Raita(Add salt, cumin powder, chili powder and chopped onions to non dairy yogurt. mix, top with chopped cilantro and serve)


Nutritional value is based on 1 serving


Calories: 383kcal, Carbohydrates: 73g, Protein: 10g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 600mg, Potassium: 544mg, Fiber: 7g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 4875IU, Vitamin C: 17.5mg, Calcium: 90mg, Iron: 3.4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Did you make this recipe? Rate and comment below!


About Richa

Hi, I'm Richa! I create flavorful plant based recipes that are inspired by my Indian upbringing, including many gluten-free, soy-free, and oil-free options.

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  1. Richa says:

    Thank you Melynda, Rosa and Yuri!

  2. Rosa's Yummy Yums says:

    That Biryani is wonderful! I cannot resist such a fragrant basmati dish.



  3. says:

    I love biryani! Tried it for the first time in culinary school 4 years ago. Nice to *meet* you through Junia’s #ricelove bloghop 🙂

  4. Melynda says:

    I appreciated learning about the history and reason behind the name of the dish, these things are always fascinating to me. Thanks for sharing with the Hearth and Soul hop.

  5. Richa says:

    Thank you all!! #ricelove back at ya!
    do let me know if you try the biryani! Have an amazing weekend!

  6. EA says:

    Fabulous dish! I can’t wait to try this, along with many of your other recipes that look delicious too! Happy to have found tour blog and to join you in the #ricelove blog hop 🙂