Peas Pulao or Matar Pulao is a quick, filling, one-pot, flavorful rice dish that is nutritious as well as takes care of your carb cravings. Made using green peas, long grain rice, and a few spices, this dish can be made in under 30 minutes using pantry staples (gluten-free).
About This Recipe
Peas in Hindi is matar and pulao refers to a flavourful rice dish, so peas pulao is basically a flavourful one-pot dish made using fresh green peas, long grain basmati rice, and a few spices.
Also called Matar wale Chawal, this peas pulao is a quick (under 30 minutes) rice dish which is prepared especially in winters when fresh peas are in season. However, with the availability of frozen peas all around the year, you can make this mutter pulao any time you want.
Each family has its own way of making matar pulav. Some like to keep it very simple and use only whole spices, rice, and peas and some like to add onion and few herbs to it. I am sharing the way I make this delicious matar pulao at home.
This Matar Pulao is,
- Can be made vegan
- Quick + Easy
- Perfect to include in festive meals
Rice – I prefer to use long grain basmati rice to make my all-time favorite Matar Pulao, as they turn out so aromatic, fluffy, and separate. But you can use any other rice, that is used in your everyday cooking.
You can also use quinoa or brown rice to make peas pulao. Check out my Brown Rice Pulao to know about the Rice: Water ratio.
Onions – Thinly slice the onions to add to the peas pulao. I like to caramelize or brown the onions a bit, as it adds a nice flavor.
Green Peas – Use fresh green peas, if it’s available. If they are not you can use frozen green peas too.
Add frozen green peas to a bowl of warm water for about 5 to 10 minutes, discard the water and they are ready to use. I freeze my peas every year and they keep good throughout. Do check out How to Freeze Green Peas and store some in winters.
If the fresh peas are not tender, you can boil them with little salt and sugar before adding them to the matar pulao.
Whole Spices – Whole spices when added into ghee, adds a beautiful fragrance and flavor. I have used cumin seeds, cloves, black cardamom, and black peppercorns. You can skip the ones which are not available to you.
Also crushing the spices gently before adding in the ghee or oil makes the matar pulao even more fragrant.
Ghee – I use ghee to make my matar pulao, but you can also use vegetable oil, olive oil, or butter instead. Use oil if you want to make the pulao vegan.
Others – Apart from the above ingredients, we will need lime juice and salt. Lime juice adds a refreshing taste along with a little hint of tanginess to this green peas pulao.
You can also garnish it with some fried cashews and finely chopped coriander leaves.
How to make Peas Pulao?
Wash 2 cups of long grain basmati rice with water 2-3 times until the water runs clear. Soak the rice in 4-5 cups of water for 20 minutes. If you don’t have basmati rice, make it with anyone that is available.
Heat 2 tbsp ghee in a pan. When the ghee is hot, add 1 tsp cumin seeds and fry on medium heat for 2 seconds. Use oil in place of ghee for the vegan version.
Slightly crush 3-4 whole cloves, 2 whole black cardamoms, and 5-black peppercorns in a mortar and pestle and add them to the pan. Fry on medium heat for 3-4 seconds. Crushing the spices releases all their flavor in the ghee.
Add 1 cup of sliced onions and fry till it is golden brown. It will take 6-8 minutes on medium heat.
Drain the rice and add it to the pan rice along with 1 cup green peas, 2-3 drops of lime juice, 2 tsp salt, and 4 cups of water.
Cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid and cook the pulao on low heat until all the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender. It will take 20-25 minutes. Stir the rice gently once in between cooking using a fork.
Remove the pan from heat and let the pulao rest for 5 minutes. Fluff the matar pulao gently with a fork and serve hot.
Frequently Asked Questions
To make peas pulao in a pressure cooker, follow the steps until adding rice and water and then put the lid of the pressure cooker.
Pressure cook for 2 whistles on high heat and then turn off the heat. Let the pressure release on its own and then open the lid and fluff the pulao.
To make it in a microwave, heat ghee in a microwave-safe pan for 2 minutes.
Add cumin seeds and micro on high for 30 seconds.
Add the whole spices and micro for 30 minutes. Now add soaked rice, water, peas, and salt, and micro for 10 minutes. If pulao is not cooked, micro for another 3-4 minutes. Cover the pan while cooking.
To make it vegan, just substitute ghee with vegetable oil or olive oil in this recipe. All the other ingredients used in this matar pulao recipe are vegan-friendly.
To make it with coconut milk, replace water with thin coconut milk, and follow the remaining process as mentioned below.
To make matar pulao in Instant Pot, Press SAUTE. Add ghee and when the ghee is hot, add cumin seeds and whole spices and fry them for a few seconds. Add onion and fry until they turn brown. Now add the drained rice, peas, salt, and lime juice. Add 1.25 cups of water for a cup of rice. Close the lid and set the valve to sealing. Press PRESSURE COOK. Set the timer to 5 minutes and once the timer goes off, let the pressure release automatically for 10 minutes. Release the remaining pressure manually and open the lid. Fluff the pulao using a fork. and serve.
Pro Tips by Neha
Try to use long grain basmati rice to make matar pulav. The grains are long and very fragrant giving this peas pulao a lovely aroma and texture. If the rice grain is old, it’s best for making pulao. So choose rice that is at least 2 years old.
You can use fresh or frozen peas to make matar pulao.
You can add some garam masala powder and fried onion to your pulao to give it a slightly different taste.
Adding a few drops of lime juice while cooking the rice makes it fluffy and whiter. So do add a few drops while cooking it.
Washing the rice prior to cooking makes it fluffier too.
Try adding some fried paneer cubes to make a nice matar paneer pulao. You can also add potatoes and veggies to this rice.
Crush the whole spices a bit to release their aroma in the dish to their best.
You can serve it on its own with just pickle and a raita of your choice.
You can serve it as a side dish with your special or festive meals.
This green peas pulao will last in the fridge for about 2 days when stored in an airtight container. Reheat it in a pan or microwave, until nice and warm.
If you feel it has become a little dry, then sprinkle a little water and add a little ghee and mix well while reheating.
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Peas Pulao Recipe
- 2 cups long grain basmati rice
- 2 tablespoon ghee (use oil for a vegan version)
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 3-4 whole cloves
- 2 whole black cardamoms
- 5-6 whole black peppercorns
- 2 whole bay leaves
- 1 thinly sliced onion
- 1 cup green peas
- 2 teaspoon salt
- 2-3 drops lime juice
- Wash 2 cups of long grain basmati rice with water 2-3 times until the water runs clear. Soak the rice in 4-5 cups of water for 20 minutes. If you don’t have basmati rice, make it with anyone that is available.
- Heat 2 tbsp ghee in a pan. When the ghee is hot, add 1 tsp cumin seeds and fry on medium heat for 2 seconds.
- Slightly crush 3-4 whole cloves, 2 whole black cardamoms, and 5-black peppercorns in a mortar and pestle and add them to the pan. Fry on medium heat for 3-4 seconds.
- Add 1 cup of sliced onions and fry till it is golden brown. It will take 6-8 minutes on medium heat.
- Drain the rice and add it to the pan rice along with 1 cup green peas, 2-3 drops of lime juice, 2 tsp salt, and 4 cups of water.
- Cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid and cook the pulao on low heat until all the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender. It will take 20-25 minutes. Stir the rice gently once in between cooking using a fork.
- Remove the pan from heat and let the pulao rest for 5 minutes. Fluff the matar pulao gently with a fork and serve hot.