Pilaf in an Afghan cauldron on the stove is not at all more difficult to cook than a regular one, but if you want to achieve the perfect result, try to find the “right” cookware. What do we mean? Yes the very same Afghan cauldron, which, unlike the classic one, has a lid that closes hermetically! As a result, we, in fact, get a pressure cooker, in which even not the softest meat is boiled in almost 20 minutes. By the way, in this recipe for pilaf we use beef, and its stewing just requires a decent amount of time. How to cook pilaf in an Afghan cauldron? Not too difficult, if you carefully follow all the instructions in our instructions.

Pilaf in an Afghan cauldron – preparation

Pilaf in an Afghan cauldron on the stove

Pilaf in an Afghan cauldron on the stove

Prep Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour
Course Recipes
Servings 8
Calories 784.55 kcal


  • 1 kg beef flesh with fat (shoulder, neck)
  • 800 g long-grain rice (e.g. basmati)
  • 700 g onions
  • 1 kg carrots
  • 2 pcs. garlic
  • 100 g clarified butter
  • 1 pcs. zira
  • 1 tbsp barberry
  • ground black pepper
  • salt


  • Prepare the beef for the pilaf. Cut it into small cubes. Cut the carrots into straws (do not grate them!) and the onions into not too thin semi-rings.
    Pilaf in an Afghan cauldron - 1
  • Rinse the pilaf rice and pour it into a bowl. Fill with cold water so that it covers the rice with a layer of 2 cm. Leave to soak for about 30 minutes at room temperature.
    Pilaf in an Afghan cauldron - 2
  • Put the cauldron on a high heat and warm it up. Add the butter and melt. Put the beef in the cauldron. Stirring, fry over medium heat until crusty, 7 minutes.
    Pilaf in an Afghan cauldron - 3
  • Add the sliced carrots. Stir-fry for 5 minutes. Add the onion, zira and barberries. Season with salt and pepper. Stir fry the pilaf zirvak for another 5 minutes.
    Pilaf in an Afghan cauldron - 4
  • Pour in the boiling water (600-700 ml). Peel the garlic heads from the top husks. Put one in the cauldron. Close it tightly. Stew the vegetables and meat for exactly 10 minutes.
    Pilaf in an Afghan cauldron - 5
  • Carefully, so as not to burn yourself, open the valves and release the pressure. Then open the cauldron. Remove the garlic (it was needed to flavor the zirvak). Taste the zirvak to adjust the amount of salt. Discard the soaked rice on a sieve, then transfer it to the meat and vegetables in an even layer in the cauldron
    Pilaf in an Afghan cauldron - 6
  • Stick the remaining peeled head of garlic on top. Press it into the rice. Do not add water. Close the cauldron tightly. Cook the pilaf over medium heat for another 8 minutes.
    Pilaf in an Afghan cauldron - 7
  • Release the pressure through the valves and open the cauldron, place the pilaf on the dish in a mound. Place the garlic head on top. Decorate as desired (pomegranate grains, herbs) and serve.
    Pilaf in an Afghan cauldron - 8


Before opening the tightly sealed lid of the Afghan cauldron in which pilaf is cooked on the stove, let the steam out through the special holes located on its surface, otherwise there is a risk of getting burned.


To give pilaf in an Afghan cauldron a beautiful golden color, add a teaspoon of ground turmeric to the boiling water with which you will pour the meat and vegetables.

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