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Quinoa & Chicken Biryani

This Quinoa & Chicken Biryani might not look like traditional rice biryani,
but it is just as delightful for the senses.

This Quinoa & Chicken Biryani is a healthier take on the Biryani I grew up on as a child. #TheRecipeRedux

When it comes to my senses and food, smell is my all time favorite. True, my sense of taste is what leads me to actually enjoy my food – but smell makes me anticipate it, long for it; and sometimes it’s all about the journey and not the destination – right?

When I was little, the smell of my mom’s biryani cooking is was what would herd my cousins and I inside from playing outside, and compel us to be on our best behavior as we awaited dinner.

Ever since, every time I have smelt her biryani cooking, it has sent jarring jolts to my salivary glands and triggered some wonderful memories!

Biryani is a dish popular in India and Sri Lanka and it is usually an elaborate combination of meat and rice with fresh cardamom and cloves along with spices like turmeric, garam masala, cumin, coriander and chili powder.

Sometimes nuts and raisins are added in and boiled eggs and Papadum (a thin, crispy flatbread usually made with lentil flour or rice flour) are served alongside it.

While biryani is a feast for my taste buds, it does a number on my nostrils! My mom doesn’t make her biryani quite as often these days as she isn’t feeling too well so when I was introduced to Progresso ‘s new Cooking Stocks, I figured I would adapt her recipe a tad bit to make this Quinoa & Chicken Biryani.


Progresso’s new line of premium Cooking Stocks are available in the soup aisle at your local grocery store. They have a rich, meaty, full body flavor, making them ideal for adding deep, complex flavors to many dishes including soups, stews, sauces, gravies and in my case – this biryani. Progresso Cooking Stocks do not contain any artificial flavors and with just 15-45 calories /95-420mg sodium /0-1g fat per serving, Progresso Stocks offers a clean way to boost your flavor game!

This Quinoa & Chicken Biryani is a healthier take on the Biryani I grew up on as a child. #TheRecipeRedux

For my version, I opted to use quinoa instead of rice and olive oil instead of ghee. As Progresso Cooking Stock is a high-quality bone broth made by simmering real bones, vegetables, and aromatic herbs, I figured I would use boneless chicken thighs instead of bone-in chicken thighs for easy eating.

I also tossed in come celery, carrots and spinach because veggies and quinoa and chicken all in one is just plain good eating!

I still used many of the same spices and I made it all in a skillet for easy clean-up. I had my mom taste my version of her biryani and she gave this a thumbs up – and refused to believe that I didn’t use bone-in chicken – go figure!

Curious about Progresso’s new line of Cooking Stocks?
Then chek them out >HERE<
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This Quinoa & Chicken Biryani is a healthier take on the Biryani I grew up on as a child. #TheRecipeRedux

Quinoa & Chicken Biryani

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

This Quinoa & Chicken Biryani might not look like traditional rice biryani, but it is just as delightful for the senses.


  • 4 chicken thighs
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 1/2 cups Progresso Chicken Cooking Stock
  • 5 cardamom pods
  • 5 clove pods
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon coriander
  • 5 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1/2 a yellow onion chopped
  • 1/2 inch piece of ginger grated
  • 2 stalks celery sliced
  • 2 carrots sliced
  • Handful of spinach chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste, I used 1/8 teaspoon of each
  • 2 boiled eggs


  1. Add the olive oil to a skillet on medium flame
  2. Then add in the chicken and let brown on each side
  3. Add in the quinoa and pour over the 2/12 cups of Progresso Chicken Cooking Stock
  4. Add in the cardamom pods, clove pods, turmeric, paprika, garam masala, cumin, coriander, garlic, onion and ginger and mix well and bring to a boil and let simmer 12 minutes covered
  5. Add in the celery, carrots and spinach and cover and let cook 5 more minutes.
  6. Remove from heat and let sit covered for about another five minutes
  7. Uncover, garnish with sliced boiled eggs and enjoy warm.
  8. *You could also add slivered almonds, raisins or dried cranberries as a topping
Nutrition Information
Yield 4 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 498Total Fat 41gSaturated Fat 11gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 28gCholesterol 341mgSodium 291mgCarbohydrates 21gFiber 4gSugar 4gProtein 59g

Did you make this recipe?

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Revathi Palani

Saturday 23rd of January 2016

Such a fabulous idea to try making biriyani with Quinoa. This biryani looks gorgeous and the pics are so bright and beautiful.


Sunday 24th of January 2016

Thanks so much Revathi - so kind of you to say.


Friday 22nd of January 2016

I love BIRYANI!!!! One of my favorite rice based dishes -- I never thought to use quinoa for it! Worth a try for sure!


Sunday 24th of January 2016

Yes! Definitely - Thanks so much Levan

Claudia | Gourmet Project

Tuesday 19th of January 2016

I'm so into quinoa right now! love this recipe, pinning for later!


Sunday 24th of January 2016

Thanks so much Claudia


Monday 18th of January 2016

I love re-creating recipes with a healthy twist that take me back to my childhood. This one looks amazing!


Sunday 24th of January 2016

Thanks so much Renee


Saturday 16th of January 2016

I have never had this dish before, but it reminds me of a lot of Peruvian dishes...we often use quinoa and garnish with hard boiled eggs, just a different selection of spices. It looks delicious!


Sunday 24th of January 2016

I am so intrigued about this Peruvian dish you mention Amanda! Hoping your blog has it?

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