Vrat ke chawal ka pulao with step by step photos – This sama rice pulao is made during Navratri fasting or Ekadashi fasting. It is made with samvat rice (barnyard millet), nuts, herbs and spices. Vegan and Gluten-free. Serve it with a side of yogurt or vrat ki kadhi or vrat wale aloo for a comforting and satisfying fasting meal.
Sama or samvat is also commonly called as vrat ke chawal. Since during fasting we abstain from cereal grains and to make any rice based dishes we use samvat or sama grains instead of rice.
These are not a kind of rice variety or even associated with rice. Basically they are from the millet family. The English name for Sama ke chawal is Barnyard millet. the other Indian names for barnyard millet is vari, varai, sanwa, samwa and swang. They are small tiny millet creamish grains as shown in the pic below.
Sama rice are good health option during fasting days and also make a good gluten free grain. You can have them plain or with Vrat ki kadhi.
Barnyard millet is also considered as a healthy choice as it is rich in fibre and proteins. It also has less calories and thus, is ideal for people with diabetes.
This millet is frequently used during religious fasting days in India. Generally I make a simple plain rice, khichdi and this pulao from Sama ke chawal. But you can also make Sama ke rice ki idli, Sama rice khichdi and Sama rice kheer.
In India, Fasting rules varies from community to community. Its always better to check with your family members before deciding the menu.
While making this samvat pulao, I have added whole garam masala and curry leaves. But some families, don’t use garam masala and curry leaves during fasting or upvas. So you can skip adding whole garam masala and curry leaves. If in doubt then please ask elders in your family about the fasting do’s and dont’s.
If you are looking for more Fasting recipes then do check:
How to make vrat ke chawal ka pulao
1. Rinse 1 cup of sama ke chawal (barnyard millet or samvat rice) a couple of times in water like the way we rinse rice.
2. Soak in enough water for 20 to 30 minutes.
3. Dry roast 2 tablespoons of peanuts on a pan or in the oven till they become crunchy.
4. Coarsely powder them in a mortar-pestle or in a dry grinder.
5. Measure all the ingredients and keep them ready for making sama ke chawal ka pulao.
Making vrat ka pulao
6. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil or ghee in a pan. I have used ghee.
7. Add all the whole spices – 1 teaspoon cumin (jeera), ½ inch cinnamon (dalchini), 2 to 3 cloves (lavang), 2 green cardamoms (choti elaichi) and 3 to 4 whole black pepper (sabut kalimirch).
8. Saute till the oil become fragrant and the cumin crackles.
9. Then add the crushed ginger-green chili paste made from ½ inch ginger and 1 green chili. You can crush them in a mortar pestle.
10. Saute for half a minute on a low heat.
11. Add 2 medium sized, cubed potatoes.
12. Also add 8 to 10 curry leaves and 1 tablespoon of chopped coriander leaves.
13. Saute for 3 to 4 minutes on a low heat.
14. Now add the peanuts powder.
15. Stir and mix well.
16. Drain the water from the samvat rice and add the samvat rice to the sauteed mixture.
17. Stir and mix well.
18. Add water as required.
19. Next add rock salt as required.
20. Pressure cook for 4 to 5 whistles or till the water is absorbed and the millet grains are cooked.
21. When the pulao is cooking, you can dry roast 8 to 10 cashews and 8 to 10 chopped almonds.
22. When serving the samvat rice pulao, garnish with the dry fruits and coriander leaves. You can also sprinkle some lemon juice in the pulao or you can keep some lemon wedges by the side of the samvat pulao.
24. You can have vrat ke chawal ka pulao plain or with vrat ki kadhi or plain curd or with fasting recipes like Vrat ke aloo or Aloo tamatar sabzi or Vrat ke dahi aloo or dahi arbi or Vrat ke aloo palak.
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vrat ke chawal ka pulao
- 1 cup sama ke chawal or vrat ke chawal or samvat rice or barnyard millet
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- ½ inch cinnamon stick (dalchini)
- 2-3 cloves
- 2 green cardamoms
- 3-4 whole black pepper
- ½ inch ginger + 1 green chili, crushed in a mortar-pestle
- 8-10 curry leaves
- 1 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves
- 2 tablespoon peanuts
- 2 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 8-10 whole cashews
- 8-10 almonds
- 2 tablespoon oil or ghee
- 2.5 to 3 cups water
- 1 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves for garnish
- rock salt (edible and food grade) as required (or sendha namak)
- lemon juice as required
- lemon wedges as required
- Rinse the sama or barnyard millet a couple of times in water like the way we rinse rice.
- Soak in enough water for 20-30 minutes.
- Dry roast the peanuts on a pan or in the oven till they become crunchy.
- Coarsely powder them in a mortar-pestle or in a dry grinder.
- Heat oil or ghee.
- Add all the whole spices – cumin, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom and black pepper.
- Saute till the oil become fragrant and the cumin crackles.
- Add the crushed ginger-green chili and saute for half a minute on a low flame.
- Add the cubed potatoes & curry leaves, chopped coriander leaves and saute for 3-4 minutes on a low flame.
- Now add the peanuts powder and stir.
- Drain the sama rice and add to the sauted mixture. stir.
- Add water and salt as required. Pressure cook for 4-5 whistles or till the water is absorbed and the millet grains are cooked.
- When the pulao is cooking, you can dry roast the chopped cashews and almonds.
- When serving the samvat pulao, garnish with the dry fruits and coriander leaves.
- When serving also sprinkle some lemon juice in the pulao. You can also keep some lemon wedges by the side of the samvat pulao while serving.
This Samvat Pulao Post from the archives first published in August 2013 has been updated and republished on December 2022.
I’m impressed with the variety of grains available these days. My maid mentions that it is called ” Bhagar ” in Marathi.
Thank you. Looks exciting. My first time to try this recipe. Will keep you posted afterwards. Thank you.
Yes! Sama rice is called bhagar in Marathi. I hope you like the recipe and do let me know how it went for you if you get the time. Thanks.
Do you have any recipe for sannas (idlis made either in mangalore or Goa) which have a sweet touch to it.
connie, i have not yet posted sannas. its difficult to get toddy where we are currently based. so i have not made them as yet and not even experimented making them with yeast.
thank you for the best recipes in the world! You are my endless inspiration for cooking and being patient and kind.
Can i ask 1 question about this recipe? in russia we traditionally cook millet with pumpkin. Can i substitute potato with pumpkin in this recipe? or it wouldn’t be good?
thank you ksenia. yes you can use pumpkin. with pumpkin though, there will be some sweet notes in the pulao.
Can u plz add some paneer recipes for navratri fasting ….all ur recipes are gr8 ..I had tried many and they are tasty
thanks tanwar. i will try to add more paneer recipes for fasting.
I am really thankful to you for giving us unlimited and authentic recipes, I have prepared lots of dishes from your recipes and enjoyed taste of different Indian cuisine. Thank you once again, God bless you.
we are pleased to know this dilip thankyou so much for your kind words and god bless you too 🙂
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