Afghan chicken Pulao

Afghan chicken Pulao

By Food E Fare

Afghan Chicken Pulao, also known as Kabuli Pulao or Palaw, is a traditional Afghan rice dish that is flavored with a mixture of spices and usually includes meat, such as chicken or lamb. It's a popular and festive dish in Afghan cuisine, often served during special occasions and celebrations.

Here's a basic recipe for Afghan Chicken Pulao:


  • 2 cups Basmati rice
  • 1 whole chicken, cut into pieces (or chicken thighs and drumsticks)
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil or ghee
  • 1/2 cup chopped carrots
  • 1/2 cup chopped raisins
  • 1/2 cup chopped almonds or slivered almonds
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 4 cups chicken broth or water
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt
  • Fresh cilantro or mint for garnish (optional)


Rinse and Soak Rice:

  • Rinse the Basmati rice under cold water until the water runs clear. Soak the rice in water for about 30 minutes, then drain.

Sauté Onions:

  • In a large pot, heat vegetable oil or ghee over medium heat. Add the thinly sliced onions and sauté until they become golden brown and caramelized.

Add Spices:

  • Add ground cumin, ground coriander, ground cardamom, and ground cinnamon to the caramelized onions. Stir well to combine and cook for an additional minute until the spices release their aroma.

Cook Chicken:

  • Add the chicken pieces to the pot and cook until they are browned on all sides. Season with salt and black pepper.

Add Vegetables and Nuts:

  • Stir in chopped carrots, raisins, and chopped almonds. Cook for a few minutes until the carrots start to soften.

Rice and Broth:

  • Add the soaked and drained rice to the pot. Pour in chicken broth or water, and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid, and simmer until the rice is cooked and the liquid is absorbed.

Yogurt Mixture:

  • In a separate bowl, mix yogurt with a bit of the cooked liquid from the pot to temper it. Gradually stir the yogurt mixture into the rice, creating a creamy texture.

Finish Cooking:

  • Continue to cook the pulao on low heat, covered, until the rice is fully cooked, and the flavors are well combined. This may take about 20-30 minutes.


  • Fluff the rice with a fork and transfer it to a serving platter. Garnish with fresh cilantro or mint if desired.

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