A Pulao or Biryani need not necessarily be high in calorie. With health awareness being the top priority for everyone now, its the need of the hour to consistently make healthy choices and eat happily. This effort, though requires time,  makes meal planning  innovative and interesting. 

In today's recipe, the traditional Basmathi is replaced with a millet - Little Millet @ Saamai. I have already shared my thoughts on Millets and its benefits in some of my previous posts. Millets in general are Diabetic friendly, low in glycemic index, gluten free and also can be converted vegan delights. It has a good dose of fiber for low gastric emptying and ensuring longer satiety without spiking sugar levels. What more? Enjoy all the goodness in a Pulao with just a single replacement. Now for the recipe. I have given options for both vegetarian and vegan versions. Choose whatever suits your taste.
Preparation time: 10 min
Cooking time: 15 min
Category: Main course/ Vegan/ Gluten-free
Cuisine: Indian
Spice level: Moderate
Difficulty level: Easy
Serves: 2-3
Nutrition Facts
Servings 2.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 392
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 15 g23 %
Saturated Fat 2 g10 %
Monounsaturated Fat 6 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 2 mg1 %
Sodium 690 mg29 %
Potassium 546 mg16 %
Total Carbohydrate 107 g36 %
Dietary Fiber 17 g67 %
Sugars 15 g
Protein 15 g30 %
Vitamin A53 %
Vitamin C77 %
Calcium14 %
Iron36 %
  • 1 cup Saamai/ Little Millet
  • 2 Onions chopped
  • 1 Carrot diced into small cubes
  • 12 beans cut into squares
  • 1 cup green peas ( fresh/ frozen)
  • 1 tsp freshly ground ginger,garlic, green chilli and mint paste
  • 1 tsp garam masala powder
  • 2-3 cloves
  • 1 inch piece cinnamon
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 staranise
  • 1/ tsp fennel
  • 2 cardamoms
  • a dash of turmeric powder
  • a dash of sugar
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk for vegetarian version/ 1/4 cup trim coconut milk for vegan version ( totally optional)
  • 1 tbsp oil / 1 tbsp ghee ( use according to diet preference)
  • Salt to taste
  • Coriander for garnish
  • Clean Saamai rice off grit and stones. Set aside. Preferably buy cleaned variety to skip this step.
  • Grind together 1 inch piece ginger, 2-3 flakes garlic, 3 green chillies (use according to pungency), a fistful of mint leaves into a  coarse paste.
  • Heat oil or ghee in a pressure cooker. Add all the whole spices and saute until a fragrant aroma wafts.
  • Add onions and saute until translucent. Add ginger garlic mint chilli paste and saute on low flame.
  • Add in vegetables and a dash of salt. Saute well. Meanwhile, wash and rinse the millet. Let it drain. 
  • When the vegetables are half done, add millet , mix well and add 1.5 to 2 cups of hot water (too much water makes the millet mushy), buttermilk or coconut milk (in case u prefer to) salt to taste, sugar, turmeric, garam masala powder and mix well.
  • Let this mixture boil for few mins until some liquid evaporates. Close the cooker with lid and pressure cook on low flame up to two whistles. Or you can even choose to open cook until all the water evaporates. 
  • Once the pressure goes off, open and fluff the Pulao. Garnish with coriander and serve hot with any Raita and crisps.


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