Instant Pot Shrimp biryani is a delicious, biryani made with long-grained aromatic basmati rice layered with prawns and cooked together. This restaurant-quality dish can be made easily in the Instant Pot!
I’ve said it several times on my blog and on Instagram, biryani is a top qualifier for my favourite meal ever! What’s not to love about a one-pot rice and meat dish, flavoured with warm spices, fresh mint and coriander, onions and enriched with raisins and cashews? It is a feast and can be enjoyed as a meal in itself, or with a little yogurt or relish (I prefer Indian pickle) on the side.
Once you make biryani in the Instant Pot, you really won’t be looking back. I have made chicken biryani and posted about it before here. Shrimp biryani is simpler, with fewer steps, and lesser cooking time, as shrimp quicks real quick. If you are a beginner interested in trying out Indian food, this recipe would be ideally suited for you!
Keep this in mind when you make Shrimp Biryani:
Coconut Milk: I make my shrimp biryani with coconut milk, instead of yogurt which is typically used in meat-based biryanis, as a tenderizer and a thickener. I prefer coconut milk as a milder, less tangy and slightly sweeter alternative to yogurt, and because shrimp doesn’t need tenderizing, in contrast to chicken, lamb or any other meat.
Onions: Sauté the onions, until lightly brown – biryani isn’t complete without onions. Traditional biryani recipes call for deep-fried (until crisp) onions to add flavour in the dish. In this version, I sauté them until light brown.
Garam Masala: Garam masala is key to so many Indian dishes and I can’t stress on this one pantry essential enough! I make my own garam masala, but you could use store-bought garam masala as well. Here is my recipe: In a pan on the stovetop, dry-roast (without oil) the following spices: ½ cup fennel seeds, 5-6 cardamoms, 6-7 cloves, a 2 inch piece cinnamon, 2-3 pieces of mace. Once the spices are heated, grind them in a high power blender, or coffee grinder. Store the ground spice mix in an air-tight jar and use as needed.
Basmati Rice: Use long grained Basmati rice for best results. I like to soak the rice in water for at least 30 minutes before I add it to the Instant Pot, as this helps in keeping the rice grains intact and prevents them from breaking. Drain the water before you add the rice.
Here is a handy video tutorial to make Instant Pot Shrimp Biryani:
Go, on, make this easy shrimp biryani and enjoy a one-pot meal that is irresistibly flavourful!
Instant Pot Shrimp Biryani
- 1.5 teaspoons ghee
- 2 medium red onions (sliced thin)
- 1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste (see notes)
- ½ cup raisins and cashews
- 2 small green chillies (slit)
- 3-4 bay leaves
- 1 large chopped tomato
- ½ cup chopped fresh mint and coriander
- 1 teaspoon red chili powder (Use Kashmiri red chilli powder for best results, it imparts colour and not much heat)
- ¾ teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon garam masala (see notes)
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 2.5 cups basmati rice (soaked in water for 30 minutes, then drained)
- 1 ¾ cups water
- 1 teaspoon salt (adjust this according to your preference))
- 500 grams shrimp (deveined, tails-on) (If frozen, thaw before using)
- Turn the IP to 'Sauté' mode in the 'More' setting. Add the ghee, followed by the sliced red onions. Sauté until the onions begin to brown.
- Add the ginger-garlic paste, followed by the raisins and cashews, green chillies, bay leaves, chopped tomato, fresh mint and coriander.
- Sauté until the tomatoes release their moisture and start to soften (around 1 minute).
- Add the red chili powder, turmeric and garam masala and stir to combine with the rest of the ingredients.
- Add the coconut milk and milk well.
- Add the basmati rice. Give it a good stir to combine.
- Add 1 ¾ cups water and mix well.
- Add the shrimp, followed by the salt and mix well to combine.
- Put on the lid of the IP, and with the valve in 'sealing' position, switch to 'Manual' mode, in 'High' setting. Set the time for 5 minutes. Let the biryani pressure cook, and let the steam release naturally (do not open the valve to release steam, let the vent go down on its own) for 10 minutes. Then, lift the vent to release any residual steam.
- Open the lid of the IP and gently fluff up the biryani with a spoon. Serve with a garnish of coriander, squeeze of lime, and yogurt of the side.
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