Chicken Biryani Rice with Figs and Nuts

chicken biryani rice with figs

This chicken biryani rice is an aromatic, spice-filled, one pot rice and meat dish with a healthy-ish spin. It is light on the rice and heavy on the spices, nuts and Orchard Choice or Sun-Maid California Figs! Pair it with a raita or salad and enjoy it with family and friends on those special occasions.

When I make biryani, I like to decrease the amount of rice used – sometimes, I even use quinoa instead. I also increase the amount of chicken and veggies. And, in this recipe, I also added in a hefty dose of pecans and plump and juicy California Figs!

Chicken Biryani with Figs and Nuts

Our take on the spicy rice dish, chicken biryani includes plump mission dried figs, pecans, and juicy chicken. This is the only chicken biryani recipe you need.
chicken biryani rice with figs
Servings 4 people


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 red onion diced
  • 1 pound chicken breast cut into cubes
  • 3 cloves garlic smashed and diced
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • 1 cup rice
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder optional
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • ¼ teaspoon cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon cardamom
  • 2 cups salted chicken broth
  • 2 carrots peeled and diced
  • ½ cup frozen peas
  • 1 cup Sun-Maid® or Orchard Choice California Figs
  • ¼ cup pecans
  • Parsley to taste
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Add oil to a pan over medium heat and sauté the onion for 5 minutes.
  • Then add in the chicken and sauté till chicken is lightly browned on one side. Flip chicken pieces over, add garlic and ginger and cook another 2 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in another pan, over low heat, roast the coriander and cumin for about a couple of minutes stirring frequently as you don’t want the spices to burn. They will change color and become a tad bit darker during the roasting process. Set aside.
  • To the chicken, add the rice, the roasted coriander and cumin, chili powder (if using), turmeric, cloves, cardamom, and chicken broth and stir. Cover and let cook about 15 minutes.
  • Uncover and add in the carrots, frozen peas, California Figs and pecans (no need to mix at this point) and let cook about another 5-7 minutes, or till rice is tender and liquid has been absorbed.
  • Using a fork, fluff and mix the veggies, nuts and California Figs with the lower layers of spiced rice and chicken.
  • Sprinkle some parsley, season with salt and pepper (if needed) and enjoy with a cold salad or raita.


Recipe and photo by Shashi Charles

6 Comments on “Chicken Biryani Rice with Figs and Nuts”

  1. Wow, you have such stunning photos! And these stuffed bell pepers – YUM! These have been on my bucket list for so long – thanks for pushing me to finally give it a try.

    1. Thanks for the comment, Ashley. The chicken fig biryani would be good in a stuffed pepper—good idea.

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