Vegan Jackfruit Biryani

A classic Indian dish, biryani is essentially a casserole with layers of well seasoned rice and curry. Jackfruit is the trendy meat substitute of the moment, and I can see why it has a similar texture t shredded pork or chicken and minimal flavour making it a blank slate. When buying tinned jackfruit, make sure not to buy the ones that are in syrup.

Vegan Jackfruit Biryani

A classic Indian dish, packed with flavour and 100% vegan.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time1 hr 30 mins
Total Time1 hr 40 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: biryani, jackfruit, vegan
Servings: 4


for the rice:

  • 2 cups basmati rice
  • medium red onion thinly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons vegan butter
  • 2 sticks cinnamon
  • 5 cardamom pods
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 gram saffron threads
  • 1 teaspoon nigella seeds
  • salt to taste

For jackfruit curry sauce:

  • 2 400 g tins young green jackfruit
  • 3 tablespoons vegan butter
  • 2 medium brown onions dice
  • 3 garlic cloves crushed
  • 1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 3 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons garam marsala
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • For rice, run the rice under cold water until water runs clear through it. Transfer to a bowl and cover with water then stand at room temperature for 1 hour. Once rice is done resting, drain it.
  • In a skillet, heat the butter on medium until melted. Add the onions and fry for 5 minutes or until softened. Add the spices and cook stirring until fragrant (30 seconds). Add the rice and stir to coat. Add 2 cups of cold water, bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer for 6 minutes or until all water is absorbed. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • For jackfruit curry, remove the jackfruit from the can and shred with two forks then run it under cold water for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, in a skillet, heat the butter on medium and fry the onions for 10 minutes or until just starting to brown. Add the garlic and spices then fry stirring for a further 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and deglaze the pan.
  • Add the shredded jackfruit and bring to a simmer. simmer uncover for 20 minutes or until thickened.
  • Preheat oven to 180°in a casserole dish construct the biryani by alternating layers of curry and rice. Cover with foil then bake for 40 minutes. Serve topped with vegan yogurt.

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