Biryani is one of the most popular Indian delicacies. While you may have tried many different varieties of it, here’s a biryani which you must try cooking at home. In this recipe, we make use of seeraga samba rice, which is a signature ingredient in Chennai-style biryani. Most of the cooks and chefs in Tamil Nadu use this variety of rice to make biryani. What makes Chennai-style biryani so distinct is the flavour of rice, the addition of coriander chutney to the pot and the amazing taste of biryani masala which can be made at home. The lovely freshness of the coriander clings to the meat, thus resulting in a dish that might really leave you craving for more! Furthermore, the rice, which resembles cumin seeds, is even considered to be the perfect choice for making biryani. This style of biryani was made famous by restaurants such as ‘Dindugal Thalapakkati’, due to the fact that the rice easily absorbed all the flavours of other ingredients. Here’s how you can make seeraga samba chicken biryani, or as we call it, Chennai-style biryani.  



- 2 cups seeraga samba rice  

- 500-gram boneless chicken 

- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder 

- 1 teaspoon red chilli powder 

- 1/2 cup curd 

- 1 tablespoon coriander chutney 

- 1 cinnamon stick 

- 1/2 tablespoon biryani masala 

- 2-3 green cardamom pods 

- 1 bay leaf  

- 1 chopped onion 

- 1 chopped tomato  

- 3 cups water  

- 1/2 teaspoon salt 

- 2 tablespoons ghee 


- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds 

- 2 cloves 

- 1 star anise  

- 1/2 cinnamon stick 

- 1 bay leaf 

- 2 green cardamom pods 

- 3-4 black peppercorns 

- 1 teaspoon anardana powder 

- 1 teaspoon coriander powder 

- 1 teaspoon nutmeg powder 


  • To make your own biryani masala, blend all the ingredients together at high speed.
  • To make biryani, soak the rice for 30 minutes.  
  • Marinate chicken in curd, salt, red chilli powder and turmeric powder. Set aside.  
  • In a big pot, heat ghee on medium flame.  
  • Once the oil begins to crackle, add cardamom pods, cinnamon stick and bay leaf.  
  • Now add chopped tomato and onion. Mix it all together for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add biryani masala and coriander chutney along with the marinated chicken.  
  • Make sure that the masala coats the chicken pieces.  
  • Now add 3 cups water.  
  • Once the water begins to boil, add the rice.  
  • Now cook everything, until the water evaporates completely.  
  • Add lemon juice, and cook for another 5 minutes.  
  • Adjust salt, if needed. Serve.


We hope you’ll enjoy the recipe!