Coconut milk pulao recipe – Learn to make one of the best flavorful coconut milk pulao with mixed vegetables. A simple vegetable pulao makes a comforting meal and is easy to prepare on a busy day either for a lunch box or dinner. This coconut milk pulao recipe is super quick to make if you have the coconut milk and veggies ready. This is a no onion and no garlic rice recipe so it can be made during festivals and religious ceremonies.
The coconut milk adds a unique and rich aroma to the dish. Since there is no usage of onions in the dish you will save some time taken to fry the onions. I have made this in a pressure cooker, how ever you can also make it in a electric cooker, insta pot or just a regular pot.
This simple rice does not call for a accompanying dish but can be served with any veg or non veg curry gravy. It is nutritious, healthy and delicious too. Using a moderate amount of spices in the seasoning makes the rice aromatic.
For an increased intake of protein you can include soya chunks or nuggets also called as meal maker. I have used freshly chopped veggies, you can replace with frozen chopped veggies available in the frozen sections of supermarkets.
Vegetable coconut milk pulao recipe card below
Coconut milk pulao
Ingredients (1 cup = 240ml )
- 2 tbsp Oil or ghee (adjust as needed)
- 1 large bay leaf or tej patta
- 1 star anise or chakri phool
- 6 to 8 cloves laung
- 2 inch cinnamon or dalchini
- small piece nutmeg or jaiphal
- 4 to 6 green cardamoms or elaichi
- ¾ tsp shahi jeera or caraway seeds
- 1 strand mace or javitri
to powder (optional, but adds a lot of flavor)
- ¾ tsp fennel seeds or saunf
- ¼ tsp pepper corn
- 2 cups rice basmati
- 2 tsp ginger or ginger garlic paste
- 2 cups mixed vegetables (carrot, beans, peas, potato go well)
- ½ cup soya chunks or meal maker (optional)
- 1 green chili (deseeded and slit)
- 8 to 10 cashew nuts (optional)
- ¼ cup mint leaves or pudina (chopped finely)
- 3 ½ cups coconut milk
- Salt as needed
How to make the recipe
Make coconut milk pulao
- Wash rice at least twice and soak it for about 20 minutes. Drain to a colander and set aside.
- Powder fennel seeds and pepper to a fine powder. Keep this aside as well.
- Heat and pan, add oil and fry the dry spices until they begin to sizzle.
- Fry ginger garlic paste until the raw smell leaves.
- Add fennel pepper powder and quickly stir. Be quick otherwise it gets burnt faster.
- Next transfer the chopped veggies and green chilies. Fry for 2 minutes.
- Add mint leaves and fry them as well.
- Pour coconut milk and add salt. Bring it to a boil.
- Completely drain off water from rice and add it to the pan.
- Cook on a medium flame until the coconut milk is absorbed by the rice.
- When there is very little moisture left, lower the flame and cover with a lid. Cook until the rice id done for 5 mins.
If cooking in a pressure cooker
- You can cook the rice for 1 whistle on a medium heat if using basmati rice. For other kinds of rice, you can allow to whistle twice.
If cooking In a pot,
- Cook until the rice is done. If needed sprinkle water as needed. Keep the pot covered for some time.
- Fluff up vegetable coconut milk pulao and serve.
NUTRITION (estimation only)
If you are a beginner or new to Indian cooking, I highly suggest you to check the supporting step by step photos for best results. Step by step photos with description available below after the recipe card.
Preparation for coconut milk pulao
1. You can skip this step if not using soya chunks. Soak soya chunks in hot water till they soften for about 10 minutes. Rinse in lot of cold water, squeeze off the excess water. You get foamy water when you squeeze. Repeat the rinse with cold water. Never proceed to cook soya chunks without following this step, as there is lot of dust and debris that gets on to these chunks when they are sun dried or dehydrated during the process of manufacturing.Make sure no water is left in the chunks. cut each chunk to 2 pieces if they are big, set aside.
2. Wash rice and soak for at least 20 minutes. Drain off and set aside.
3. Powder saunf and pepper. Set this aside. If you don’t have a blender, just use a hand pestle and crush them, but to a fine or slightly coarse powder.
4. If you like to garnish the pulao with fried cashews, fry them till golden and set aside. I like to use it along with the veggies since they taste good when cooked in the spices.
Coconut milk pulao recipe – step by step photos
5. Add ghee or oil to a hot pan and fry all the spices till they begin to sizzle.
6. If you prefer to use onions. You can add them now and fry until golden. I did not use onions, just to cut down the time.
7. Add ginger paste, fry until the raw smell disappears. Do not burn.
8. Time to add in saunf and pepper powder. Saute quickly. Take care not to burn.
9. Add vegetables and chili. I prefer to add cashews now. Fry them for 2 to 3 minutes. If using soya chunks add them now.
10. Next add chopped mint leaves and fry for another two minutes.
Using coconut milk to make coconut milk pulao
11. Pour coconut milk, add salt and taste the milk now. Adjust salt and spice if needed.
12. Drain the rice completely and add it to the pan.
13. Cook till the coconut milk is almost absorbed. Refer the picture.
14. Lower the flame completely. Cover the pan either with a tight lid or with a pressure cooker lid.
15. Cook until the rice is done. If needed sprinkle some water. If using a pressure cooker, cook for just 5 minutes on a a low flame. Switch off the stove, do not allow the cooker to whistle. Let the pressure come down. Fluff up the mixed veg pulao.
Alternate method – Cover the cooker immediately after adding rice. Then allow the cooker to whistle once on a medium heat.
Garnish coconut milk pulao and serve with a raita or gravy.