Peas pulao or matar pulao is a delicious Indian rice dish with basmati rice, fresh or frozen green peas, few Indian whole spices and herbs.
This one pot green peas pilaf is an easy to make dish that you can make in a pot, pressure cooker or instant pot. I have given the instructions for all the ways with tips and step by step photos. Matar means green peas in hindi and pulao is the Indian term for rice pilaf. Vegan and gluten free
This matar pulao recipe is my all time favorite one pot rice dish. I make this very frequently during winters, when fresh green peas is in season. Along with rice and green peas you will need very few more ingredients for this recipe.
It is a very fragrant, mildly spiced, fluffy and tasty side dish that you can serve with delicious Indian curries like palak paneer, paneer butter masala, kadai paneer or dal recipes like dal fry, dal makhani, dhaba dal.
Here is my detailed matar pulao recipe with step by step photos. Enjoy!
About This Recipe
What Is Peas Pulao?
Peas pulao is a classic rice recipe from north Indian cuisine also known as matar pulao or matar bhat or matar ke chawal. This is super easy to make variation of Indian pulao with very few spices.
This dish requires minimum chopping, provided you have shelled green peas or frozen peas ready. All the other ingredients you need are pretty much pantry staples.
The recipe of peas pulao is simple and straight forward that even beginners can easily make. You can make this recipe in a pan on stove top or an instant pot or a pressure cooker. I usually make this mildly spiced to serve as side dish with rich curries but you can even make it spicy.
I always cook peas pulao when I have guests at home or when we need a side dish in a lavish menu. It is easy to make a large batch and goes with most of the Indian curries.
This matar chawal can be made in many ways. While the base recipe remains the same, the spices used, seasoning and few other ingredients vary from home to home.
This peas pulao recipe I am sharing here is vegan and gluten free but there are also variations like adding yogurt, sautéing with butter or ghee, add fried paneer cubes before serving etc.
While some recipes use only whole spices, I also add some mint leaves and coriander leaves for flavor in this peas pulao recipe. Sometimes I also add a pinch of saffron for richness.
I mostly make matar pulao with fresh green peas but you also make peas pulao with frozen peas. I know some of you may not easily get fresh green peas, so if you can absolutely use frozen green peas too for this recipe.
Usually I serve matar pulao with a dal and paneer curry like paneer makahni or mixed veg curry. When making for guests I also add a phulka or naan to the menu.
Do try out this peas pulao recipe and enjoy with your favorite Indian curries or even a light raita or fresh yogurt. Matar rice also tastes good on its own. It is one the best seasonal dish for you, your family and your loved ones 🙂 This matar pulao recipe is
simple and easy to make
made in one pot only
ready within 30 minutes
fragrant, comforting and wholesome
vegan and gluten free
Ingredients For Matar Rice
Rice– the traditional and authentic recipe of peas pulao is made with long grain basmati rice, the fragrant long grain rice variety from India. I have also used the same here but you can easily use any type of rice to make peas pulao like brown rice, brown basmati rice.
My another favorite rice for this recipe is aromatic jeeraga samba from south India. Y0u can also use quinoa, jasmine rice for this dish.
Green peas– I always prefer to use fresh green peas to make this rice. If fresh ones are not available you can use frozen green peas too. Just keep them soaked in warm water for 5-10 minutes before using.
Onions– Thinly sliced red onions add so much flavor and texture to this green peas pulao recipe. You can use any type of onions here. Scallions or green onions will be delicious too. I sometimes add fried onion or brista just before serving.
Whole spices– the flavor for this rice dish comes from whole spices. Use very good quality spices for best flavor. You will need bay leaf, cloves, cinnamon, green cardamoms. You can also use star anise. If you do not have whole spices you can use 1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder in peas pulao recipe.
Herbs– I never miss adding herbs like chopped mint leaves or cilantro leaves in this recipe. They add so much flavor and taste. You can also dill leaves.
Oil– I have used oil to saute the ingredients but adding butter or ghee will make matar pulao even more fragrant. You can also use vegan butter.
Other Ingredients– cumin seeds, cashews, green chilies, ginger garlic, lemon juice and salt.
How To Make Peas Pulao Recipe- Method -1 (Stove Top)
Pick and rinse 1 cup basmati rice to make matar rice thoroughly once or twice. Soak rice in plenty of water for 20 minutes. Drain the rice in a colander and spread on a wide plate. Set aside for 10 minutes.
Other Preparations for peas pilaf
In the meantime shell the green peas if you are using fresh peas, mince ginger garlic, slit green chilies and finely chop the mint leaves. Thinly slice the onions or you can also finely chop them.
If you are using frozen peas keep them soaked in warm water for 15 minutes.
Cook Matar Pulao
Heat oil or ghee in a heavy bottomed pan. Once the oil is hot add the spices- bay leaf, green cardamoms, cumin seeds, cloves and cinnamon stick. You can also crush the spices slightly to release oils for more flavor. Add broken cashews and saute for a minute.
Next add slit green chilies, ginger garlic paste or minced ginger garlic and saute well for 30 seconds. Once the spices are well sautéed add chopped onions. Saute and cook for a minute.
Now add chopped mint leaves or coriander leaves. Saute for few seconds.
Now add the green peas and mix well. Saute for 2 minutes.
Next add the drained rice and mix very gently.
Saute in toast the rice very well in high heat for a minute.
Once done, add 2 cups of water and salt to taste. Mix gently. Bring the water to a gentle boil, keeping the pan open. Next cover the pan and simmer for 8-10 minutes or until the rice is cooked.
Once done open the pan and fluff the rice with a fork very gently.
Transfer peas pulao to a serving plate and serve hot.
Instant Pot Matar Pulao Recipe- Method 2
Place the steel insert inside your instant pot and switch it on.
Press saute mode. Once it displays hot, heat ghee or oil for few seconds.
Add whole spices and cashew nuts and fry for a minute. Next add the chopped coriander leaves, slit green chilies and ginger garlic paste. Saute for few seconds.
Now add thinly sliced onions and saute until it turns soft.
Next add frozen or fresh peas and mix, followed by soaked and drained rice.
Add 2 cups of water, 1/4 teaspoon lemon juice and salt. Mix gently.
Cancel saute mode and close the instant pot.
Press pressure cook button or rice button. Set timer for 4 minutes and pressure valve to seal. Once done, let the pressure release naturally for 5 minutes. Open the instant pot and fluff the rice with a fork. Serve instant pot peas pulao hot.
Peas Pulao In Pressure Cooker- Method 3
To make matar pulao in pressure cooker the recipe is same as instant pot.
Heat ghee or oil in a pressure cooker and follow the steps from sautéing spices to add rice, water and salt.
Close the pressure cooker and pressure cook for 2 whistles in medium heat. Once the pressure is released, open and fluff the rice with a fork. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve peas pulao hot.
Pro Tips To Make Matar Pulao
Rice– As mentioned above use long rice grain like basmati rice for traditional peas pulao recipe. Basmati rice has a wonderful aroma and fluffy texture, best suited for matar pulav.
It is always best to aged basmati for these recipes. If your rice is not aged, add 1.5 cups of water instead of 2 cups for 1 cup rice.
Rinsing and soaking the rice– Rinsing the rice helps in removing the excess starch and makes it non sticky. Soaking helps in making the grains super long, so do follow these steps.
Green peas- You can use both fresh or frozen green peas for this recipe. I usually add 1.5 cups of green peas for 1 cup raw rice. If you want you can also add 2 cups green peas.
Water to rice– If your basmati rice is aged and you soak it for 20 minutes, it needs less water compared to non aged rice.
The rice I use is 2 years aged and 1:2 works perfectly fir me. You may have to try one or two times to judge the correct quantity of water your rice needs.
Lemon juice– Adding few drops of lemon juice makes the rice whiter and non sticky. You can also add few drops of oil.
Frequently Asked Questions
How to make matar pulao with dried peas?
If you want to make peas pulao with dried peas soak 1/3 cup dried peas in 4 cups water for 8-12 hours. Drain thoroughly and cook until it turns al dente.
If using pressure cooker cook for 4-5 whistles in 2 cups of water
in instant pot cook for 12 minutes with 2 cups of water in manual or pressure cooker mode. Once done drain and use the cooked peas for making matar pulao.
Which is the best rice for Pulao?
Traditionally basmati rice is used for making pulao recipes in north India and jeera samba rice is used for making biryani, ghee rice etc in south India.
You can use any of these for this recipe too.
What are the differences between Kashmiri pulao, vegetable pulao and peas pulao?
Vegetable pulao- Classic vegetarian pilaf with whole spices, mixed vegetables and toasted bread pices as optional garnish.
Peas pulao-made with just green peas, onions and whole spices. Sometimes fried cashews or paneer cubes are added as garnish.
Kashmiri pulao- it is a sweet rice pilaf made with dried fruit, nuts, basmati rice and saffron. Fresh fruits like pomegranate or grapes are added as garnish.
How to make matar pulao more flavorful?
You can use any vegetable broth or thinned tomato juice or thin coconut milk instead of water.
How to make this dish spicy?
Increase green chilies as needed.
Serve peas pulao hot or warm always. It goes well with rich and spicy Indian curries like paneer lababdar, aloo gobi, navratan korma, achari korma curries.
Matar pulao also tastes good with simple onion raita, veg raita, potato fry.
More Green Peas Recipes
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Peas Pulao (Matar Pulao Recipe)
- 1 cups= basmati rice
- 1.5 cups green peas fresh or frozen
- 1/4 cup tightly packed mint leaves, chopped
- 1 large onion thinly sliced
- 2 cups water adjust as needed
- 1 inch ginger peeled and crushed
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- Salt to taste
- 2 green chilies
- 3 tablespoons oil or ghee
- 3 cardamoms
- 3 cloves
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 inch cinnamon stick
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- Pick and rinse 1 cup basmati rice to make matar rice thoroughly once or twice. Soak rice in plenty of water for 20 minutes. Drain the rice in a colander and spread on a wide plate. Set aside for 10 minutes.
Cook Matar Pulao
- Heat oil or ghee in a heavy bottomed pan. Once the oil is hot add the spices- bay leaf, green cardamoms, cumin seeds, cloves and cinnamon stick. You can also crush the spices slightly to release oils for more flavor.
- Once the spices are well sautéed add chopped onions. Saute and cook for a minute.
- Now add chopped mint leaves or coriander leaves. Saute for few seconds. Next add slit green chilies, ginger garlic paste or minced ginger garlic and saute well for 30 seconds.
- Now add the green peas and mix well. Saute for 2 minutes.
- Next add the drained rice and mix very gently.
- Saute in toast the rice very well in high heat for a minute.
- Once done, add 2 cups of water and salt to taste. Mix gently. Bring the water to a gentle boil, keeping the pan open. Next cover the pan and simmer for 8-10 minutes or until the rice is cooked.
- Once done open the pan and fluff the rice with a fork very gently.
- Transfer peas pulao to a serving plate and serve hot.
- Do not miss the mint leaves in this recipe.
- You can add 2 tablespoons methi leaves along with mint leaves.
- If you wish to add vegetables like potatoes,carrots, add along with peas and adjust water.