Vegetable Pulao ~ Bagara in a Pressure Cooker

Vegetable Rice, Pilaf, Vegetable Pulav, Blogging Marathon, Pressure Cooker Recipe

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I use my pressure cooker(s) on a regular basic, at least two – three times a week, if not every day. I use it mostly for cooking lentils & legumes, goat meat and once in a while to cook bottle gourd. Although bottle gourd looks tender, at times it takes longer to cook and in a pressure cooker, it cooks in a jiffy. Other than the above mentioned food, I rarely use my pressure cook for other preparations such as rice varieties and curries. Even the dals I cook in the cooker are only to cook the lentils and later, I finish it off by tempering it in a saucepan. Some of my family members do cook dals in a pressure cooker, even the tempering, but I prefer tempering it at the end.  I recently stated cooking vegetable rice or pulao in a pressure cooker since the blogger meet early this spring. Pavani was gracious to host us and she made bagara in a pressure cooker. The rice was perfectly cooked. Since then I wanted to try it and have recently started cooking it in pressure cooker and am loving it! Now I have another use to my good old pressure cooker!  I have five pressure cookers in various sizes but use only couple them on regular basis.

Vegetable Rice, Pilaf, Vegetable Pulav, Blogging Marathon, Pressure Cooker Recipe, One Pot Meal

When Valli announced blogging marathon # 35, I right way decided my themes and one of them is Pressure Cooker Recipes. So for the next three days, I will be posting recipes that are cooked in a pressure cooker. When I say pressure cooker recipe, even the tempering is going to be in the cooker. I won’t be using any other pot or pan, but for the pressure cooker.  Well, I might use a another vessel to cook the food in the pressure cook, but not directly on the stop.

The first recipe under this theme is vegetable bagara. I already blogged this recipe here but since this is in a pressure cooker recipe, I am posting it again. I actually wanted to post a methi pulao recipe and I also prepared it. The weather in our part of the world is so bad for the past few days that we hardly saw the sun in the last one week. It either rained all day or was cloudy most of the day. I did not like how my pictures turned out hence posting this recipe which I made this Saturday.   These pictures a bit better than the methi pulao pictures.  Anyway, all my vegetable pulaos or vegetable bagara recipes are pretty much the same, except the vegetables that go in it. I had very little methi or fenugreek leaves to cook methi pulao again, so made this instead. I had some spinach which had to be used up right away, so threw some in it. The one thing I like about vegetable bagara is we can throw in any vegetable we like and it turns out good!

Vegetable Rice, Pilaf, Vegetable Pulav, Blogging Marathon, Pressure Cooker Recipe, One Pot Meal

Total Time: 30 – 40 minutes
Preparation: 10 – 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 – 25 minutes
Serves: 3-5

The measuring cup used here is the one that comes with the rice cooker, which is 160ml.

  • 3 cups Basmati Rice soaked in water for 30 minutes
  • 3 – 4 ½ tbsp. Oil (I used 3 tbsp. oil)
  • 6 Cardamoms
  • 3 Cloves
  • 1” Cinnamon Stick
  • ½ – ¾ tsp. Shah Jeera
  • 3-5 Bay Leaves
  • 1 Biryani Flower (opt.)
  • 1 medium Onion Sliced
  • 1 ½ – 2 tbsp. Ginger Garlic Paste
  • ¾ cup Chopped Mint
  • 2 cup chopped Spinach
  • 9 Green Chilies (adjust to spice tolerance level)
  • 1 cup Carrots cut into 1 – 1 ½” pieces or 3 Carrot
  • 15 or 1 cup of 1 – 1 ½” pieces of Beans
  • 1 medium – large Potato or 1 ½ cup diced Potato
  • 1 ½ – 2 cup Lima Beans (frozen)
  • 1 tbsp. Salt (adjust to taste)
  • 3 ¾ cups Water
  • Cilantro ~ Kotmir ~ Fresh Coriander chopped for garnish


  • Wash and soak the rice for 30 minutes.
  • While the rice soaks, cut the vegetables.
    • Slice onion, chop mint & spinach, slit green chilies into two and cut beans to 1 – 1 ½” pieces.
    • Cut carrots into 1 – 1 ½” pieces and cut each piece to 2-4 pieces, lengthwise. Do not cut into very thin pieces as carrots tend to cook very fast and we do not want mashed carrots.
    • Cut potatoes to ½” – ¾” cubes. I cut one potato into 18 pieces.
  • In a 4 liter pressure cooker, heat oil. Even 3 liter cooker would work but rice would cook better in at least a 4 liter cooker.
  • Once the oil is hot, add cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, shah jeera, bay leaves, and biryani flower and let the spices crackle.
  • Once the spices turn brown, add onions and sauté till light golden brown.
  • Add mint, spinach and cook for a minute or two until greens are wilted.
  • Add potatoes cook for another minute or two.
  • Add rest of the vegetables and cook for another minute or two until the vegetables are lightly roasted.
  • Drain the rice, add it to vegetables. Cook for couple of minutes until rice is roasted a little.
  • Add water, salt and give it a good stir.
  • Close the pressure cooker and let the steam build up. Once the steam begins to escape from the vent, put the whistle and cook for one whistle. Reduce the flame to low and cook for another 2 minutes.
  • Turn off the heat and let the pressure inside the cook cool down. This will take at least 10 – 15 minutes. Once the pressure cools off, or when ready to serve, open the pressure cooker and mix lightly.
  • Transfer to serving bowl, garnish with cilantro and serve hot with riata or any gravy curry.


  • The vegetables and the quantity of veggies that go into this pulao are subjective to once preference. Other vegetables and herbs that can be added to this pulao are cauliflower, methi or fenugreek leaves. Lima beans can be substituted with green peas or can use both.
  • I used fresh vegetables here but one can use mixed frozen vegetables
  • Cooking in a pan/sauce pan on stovetop or in a rice cooker, use 1: 1 ½ cups rice to water ratio.
  • Cooking in a pot If cooking on stove top, add water to rice and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and cook covered until almost all the water evaporates. Reduce the heat to low and cook for another five minutes or until all the water evaporates and rice is well cooked.
  • Cooking in a Rice Cooker If using a rice cooker, add rice & vegetables mixture to rice cooker container, add water and switch on the cooker. The cooker shuts off once the rice is done. Let the rice rest for at least 10 minutes before serving.

Recipes I posted this month in 2009 and in 2010 .
Blogging Marathon: To know more about the various themes and participating bloggers for blogging marathon# 35, checkout the blogging marathon page
Events: This pulao is on it’s way to Cooking with Seeds, an event started by Priya and hosted by Rafeeda. The theme this month is Rice.

17 thoughts on “Vegetable Pulao ~ Bagara in a Pressure Cooker

  1. Pulao looks delicious. Pressure cooker is a great tool to make perfect rice. Thanks for the mention 🙂
    Looking forward to your creations in the pressure cooker.

  2. I too made pulav in pressure cooker and never ever used pan for that. Glad you are trying pulao in it. Veg pulao looks delicious with each grain separated ! And ofcourse clicks are amazing..

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