Prawns Pilau

In many coastal families, seafood is a necessity that they cannot live without. Almost all families eat seafood every day of the week, from breakfast to lunch to dinner. There are so many ways to prepare seafood, and it can be used in different cuisines. Additionally, it enhances the taste of any dish by adding a fresh touch to it.

I have found that most of them enjoy the taste of Prawns Pilau when it comes to spicy food. In order for the prawns to get a good taste, it is important to season them separately before cooking them. Oftentimes, when the prawns are cooked in pilau, whole spices are used to add a tinge of freshness and flavour to them.

You will love this Prawns Pilau recipe if you are a fan of seafood. There is nothing more delicious than spicy prawns cooked in a flavourful pilau, this is a delicious and very easy meal to prepare.


Ingredients for  Prawns Pilau (Spicy prawn)

  • 250-300 gm prawns, cleaned and deveined
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic paste
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • pinch of paprika powder
  • pinch of turmeric powder
  • pinch of black pepper powder
  • 1 tablespoon butter or oil

Ingredients for Prawn Pilau (rice)


  • 2 cups long grain basmati rice
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2-3 tablespoons of cooking oil
  • 2 tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic paste
  • 2 potatoes, cut into chunks
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 cardamom (iliki) pods
  • 2 cloves
  • 5 whole black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon of coriander powder
  • 1/2  teaspoon of red chilli powder (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 2 1/2 cups vegetable stock or water (or as needed)
  • fresh coriander, chopped
  • salt to taste
  • lime slices for garnish

Instructions for preparing Prawns Pilau

The first thing we need to do is start with the prawns. My preferred method of cooking the prawns is to partially cook them and then stir them into the pilau towards the end of the cooking time. By doing this we can avoid overcooking the prawns. This is because it literally takes minutes for them to get fully heated. If they are simmered with the pilau, the risk of overcooking, dryness, and rubberiness is very high.

In a bowl, mix together salt, chilli powder, paprika powder, turmeric powder, black pepper powder, garlic powder, and lemon juice. Allow the marinade to sit for a few minutes on the prawns and then apply it to all of them and cover with a lid.

After washing your rice and rinsing it off, you should soak it for about 20-30 minutes so that it does not become too sticky.

The marinated prawns should be fried in less than 2-3 minutes in a pan with 1 tablespoon of oil or butter; do not overcook the prawns. Then place them on a plate and set them aside until you are ready to serve them.

In the event that any oil remains in the pan after you have fried the prawns, you do not have to discard it. You can use this for your pilau as it will help add more flavour to the dish and will help to enhance the flavours. The butter should be added along with the additional oil, then the butter should be heated up and then the spices should be mixed in (cumin seeds, cardamom, cinnamon, and black pepper). As they splutter, stir in the chopped onions, and then allow them to simmer for a few minutes. Then, fry it until it becomes golden brown. Afterward, add the garlic paste and cook for a few seconds, then add the potatoes and powdered spices.

Stir these regularly for a minute, then gradually add the stock or water, and cook for another minute. As a rule, add an amount of liquid of one and a quarter cups per cup of rice. This works for the type of rice that I like to make. It is, however, highly suggested that you use as much liquid as necessary for your recipe if it requires more. If you are using salted stock (or if you are not using salted stock) then you may need to add a pinch of salt.

Once the rice has been boiled for a few minutes, add it to a pot that has just been drained. Sprinkle with a little of fresh coriander over the top, and stir well. I recommend simmering this mixture on high heat for 2-3 minutes before stirring and reducing the heat to medium. The rice must be continued to be cooked with the lid on until all the water has been absorbed, giving it a stir every now and then to ensure it is cooked evenly and perfectly throughout.

In a cooking pot, once the rice has absorbed the majority of the water from the meat, you can turn the heat down to the lowest possible setting. You can then add the pre-cooked prawns at that point. It is recommended that you stir the mixture (prawns pilau) one last time.

Seal your pan with a tight lid or dampen a kitchen towel and place it over the pan. This will provide a tight seal. Then, you should place the lid on top of it and let it sit for a few minutes. It is recommended that you steam the pilau for approximately 10-15 minutes before serving. It is time to switch off and serve the meal. Don’t forget to garnish your Prawns Pilau with a few slices of lime and some fresh coriander.

Enjoy! 🙂

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