Shevid Baghali Polow - Dill & Lima Beans Rice

Combination of fresh finely chopped dill along with preferably fresh baby Lima beans or Fava beans and aromatic rice make a very delicious meal. I think the person who came up with the idea of throwing these ingredients together must have been a culinary genius of her time. This mixed rice could be served as a vegetarian dish along with some yogurt and cucumber (mast-o-khiar) side dish. Dill and Lima beans rice is usually served with lamb shanks or chicken. I must say that it goes very well with turkey too. I have made it several times as a side dish for Thanksgiving dinner. I like the rice to be covered with fresh and some dried dill to cover every grain of rice. Also, I use equal portions of Lima beans and rice. To me, cooking Persian food is not an exact science. I usually start with having the main ingredients for a dish that I like to make but I tend to kind of add my personal touches and preferences to it along the way. However, if there is bit of change to an original Persian recipe, I’ll make sure to point out and make a note of it in my posts. Many of you know that there may be many variations of a recipe. It depends which part of the country you are from, north or south or how your mom has taught you to cook.

Shevid Baghali Polow - Dill & Lima Beans Rice

Serves 4-6

2 cups rice
2 cups frozen baby lima beans, thawed
2 cups finely chopped fresh dill or 1 1/2cups dried dill. (I used the combination of 1 1/2cup fresh dill and 1/2 cup dried)
2-3 tablespoons oil
1/3 teaspoon turmeric
Dash of cinnamon
1-2 tablespoons of melted butter for the topping *optional

  1. In a medium bowl mix dill (fresh or dried), lima beans, a dash of salt, cinnamon and turmeric. Mix well and set aside.
  2. Wash rice with cool water a few times. Soak in 4 cups of water, add 2-3 tablespoons of salt and set aside for a 1-2 hours. 
  3. In a large non-stick pot that has a tight fitting lid, bring 4 cups of water to a rapid boil. Drain rice and pour into boiling water and boil uncovered for 10 minutes. Test to see if the rice is ready. Rice should be firm in the center and soft on the outside. Drain and rinse with cool water. 
  4. Wash the pot and return to heat, add a couple of tablespoons of oil. Place a layer of rice into the pot and then  a layer of dill and Lima beans. Then another layer of rice, continue building it into a pyramid shape. 
  5. In order to release the steam make 2-3 holes in the rice with the bottom of the spatula. 
  6. Cover and cook for 10 minutes on medium-high heat until rice is steaming, add a cup of water. Lower heat and steam the rice for another 40-50 minutes.
Serve on a platter along with lamb shanks or chicken pieces or just by itself as a vegetarian dish. If you find the rice a bit on the dry side distribute the melted butter on top of the rice.



  1. Hi Azita joonam, I just found your new blog. It's awesome. I love cooking! Thanks for sharing your recipes.

  2. azita, i love this recipe. my grandmother never taught me this, but we did an afghani version- chalau e shibbit- just rice with dill. i made it for friends last night, am being lazy about putting up a post about it, but hopefully, shall do so soon. i am going to try it your way next time.

  3. Shayma, thank you, love to see your version of rice and dill dish.

  4. As you mentioned in your blog, lamb shank is wonderful with this recipe. Do you have a recipe for the lamb shank as well? If so, can you cross reference it here?

  5. There are two different ways of making lamb shanks that I know of:

    1- In a large pot saute a large chopped onion in 2 tablespoons of oil, when golden brown, add 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric, stir and place 4 lamb shanks in the pot. Brown meat on all sides. Pour 4-5 cups of water,add salt and pepper. Since lamb shanks have a strong smell, I would add a bay leaf and a dash of cinnamon to the pot. Cover and cook for about two hours till meat is cooked. You can use a pressure cooker, crock pot or even cook it in the oven.

    The following is my mother's recipe and this is how I like to make them too:

    2- In a large pot bring 4-5 cups of water to a boil, add 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric, place shanks, one large quartered onion, 2-3 garlic cloves, salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook slowly for about three hours, till lamb is very tender and the juice thickens.

  6. Thank you. I will give this a go in the next couple of days. I recently discovered this blog on my own and it is now my Persian cooking reference. Now this is the part I would like to put in a request. Do you know how to make Sharbate Sekanjabin? It is delightful summer drink and I remember having it with crushed ice, mints, graded cucumbers and sugar on the rim. I have tried purchasing it, but the taste is different than I remembered. I thought you may be able to offer an authentic recipe.

    It is also great with lettuce as a refreshing snack. I can't wait to introduce and serve it to my friends as the summer persian snack.

    Thank you and I applaud your blog. Well Done.

  7. Saviz, Thank you and I'm glad you found this blog! I'll definitely write about Sekanjabin in the next couple of weeks. I could write a brief recipe here but I feel Sekanjabin deserves to have its own post! Pleas check!

  8. Hey Azita,
    I was thinking of making this with a grain other than rice. Do you think coarse bulgur or quinoa would work, too?

  9. Janet, I've never made this with anything other than rice but it should work. Let me know how it turns out.

  10. could you please post a video of how to make this

  11. I found your blog by accident while i am searching for persian receipes , Its excellent and I am happy to see such a lovely job perfectly done . Thank you for sharing this with us .

  12. I spent 6 years in Iran and till today it holds such a special place in my heart!I am so glad that I found your blog!

  13. This was my favourite recipe while living in Iran!I can still smell the dill..So amazing..Going to make it tomorrow!

  14. I can't wait to try and make this, thank you so much! This is the best rice! So happy to find your blog.

  15. What kind of rice should be used? I've never cooked rice this way and I'd like my dish to look like yours......

    1. I mostly just use white basmati rice.

    2. Thanks, Azita! Can't wait to try many of your recipes :)

  16. I made this last night and it was delicious! My husband & I are vegan and this will be a new regular for us, Thank you for sharing!