Jan 6, 2014

Foxtail Millet Biryani

First of all, The Meal Algorithm wishes you a very happy new year!

May your year be filled with healthy and delicious food, shared with loving family and friends.
And may your plates always be colorful and your glasses clinking!

For sometime now, I’ve been looking for good and healthy rice substitutes, some complex carbs which are healthy , easy too cook and very easy on the pocket too. In that endeavor, am experimenting with various kinds of millets. And I must say I’ve got quite comfortable with incorporating them in my meals. Which is why I gathered the confidence to share one of my millet recipes here. There are more on the way, but this one’s an easy , tasty and full meal!


Korralu, as they are called in Telugu or Foxtail millet is one of the easily available millets, and can be used in almost any dish as a rice substitute. I pack these millets for my lunch box also, and mix them with dal and sabzi for lunch. For dinner, I resort to recipes like this which make a full meal.


Soak them for 15 min in water before you plan to cook, and cook it with sufficient amount of water (I used twice the water quantity) in an open pot. My mother eats Korralu on a regular basis and she pressure cooks them. I am yet to understand how much time it takes to pressure cook these millets , and once I get a hang of it, I’ll share that method too. Meanwhile, all my foxtail millet recipes are cooked in the open pot style.


I’ve added chick peas to this recipe to pack in extra protein. But feel free to omit those if that’s not what you like. You can add any other protein sources, or just make a regular vegetable pulav with this method. But do follow the instructions to cook the millets, atleast for the first few times till you get a hang of it.

Foxtail Millet Biryani or Foxtail Millet cooked with masala and vegetables
Cooking time - 20 min
Preparation time - 30 min
Serves - 2
Level - Medium

Korralu or Foxtail millet - 1/2 C
Chick peas - 1/4 C, soaked in water overnight
Assortment of Vegetables - 1 C, cut in small pieces [I used French beans, carrots and potatoes]
Onion - 1 medium sized, diced
Garlic - 5-6 cloves, chopped fine
Biryani Masala powder - 1 Tsp [You can also use garam masala or any curry masala powder]
Salt - To taste
Cooking oil - 1/2 Tbsp
Water - 1 C, to cook the foxtail millet

Wash the millets in water and soak them for 15 min.
While they are soaking, place the soaked chick peas in a microwave safe container along with enough water and microwave the peas for 15 min on high power.
As an alternative, you can pressure cook the chick peas in a pressure cooker.

While both the millets and chick peas are being prepared, get onto making the vegetables.
Sauté the onion and garlic pieces together in a heated pan with the oil till they turn golden brown.
Sauté the vegetables along with the onion.

Once the chick peas are cooked, drain them from the microwave container and sauté them along with the vegetables.
Add enough salt and masala powder to this now.

Now add the soaked millets and water and mix well.
Let this cook on in a closed pot for 10 min on a medium flame.
The dish is ready when the millets are cooked, in approximately 15 min.

Serve hot, with raita or any chutney or as-is.


  1. With some curd on the side, this would make a complete meal! Lovely pictures.
    I use the rice cooker to cook the foxtail millets. I add just enough water to drown the millets and add a touch of ghee to it and they come out nice and fluffy!

    1. Nice. Am going to try this method of cooking it next! :)

  2. Awesome start to the year! I make korralu in the pressure cooker, double water, 2 whistles on full and on sim for 5-6 minutes. they come out good. I've used the same method to make pulav and khichdi too with foxtail millets, adding extra water if using additional pulses or vegetables

  3. Arundati, yeah... Am going to try cooking via pressure cooker method next :)

  4. I am sure this biryani is more appetizing than other ones. Thanks for sharing post


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