Fly for Flavors: 5 Must Visit Indian Cities to Relish Divine Food

Famous Indian Food

India is a land of many cultures and traditions, and a lot of different communities thrive in this ecosystem. Food has played a significant role in reflecting the blend of various cultures throughout the ages in India. People use a plethora of exotic ingredients to cook food which ranges from hot and spicy to sour and sweet. Spices bring alive the magic of Indian cooking. The influence of spice has been historical, and it is a common ingredient used in every Indian cuisine. Indian food provides a complete sense of taste, from tongue-tingling flavors to unfamiliar dishes. India has many dishes which can be included in the list of food you should definitely try in your lifetime.

From the North to the South and the East to the West, India offers an entire journey for all food crusaders of the world. Since a lot of people in India are vegetarian, the copious number of dishes makes the country a perfect place for all those vegans out there.

When in India it would be nothing short of blasphemy if one were not to taste some of the famous Indian food. Here are 5 Must Visit Indian Cities where you can relish some of the famous Indian food.

HYDERABAD, TELANGANA

A city with a princely legacy of the Nizams, Hyderabad offers a unification of Turkish, Mughal, and Arabic flavors. The Hyderabadi cuisine also has an influence of Telugu and Marathwada cuisines. For food aficionados, Hyderabad offers an authentic mix of various cuisines yet has an individuality about it. A must visit place for all travelers, finding accommodation is easy and budget-friendly. Hotels in Hyderabad start at ₹759 by OYO Rooms, the largest branded network of hotels the country.

Here are some of the famous Indian food to relish when you are in Hyderabad.

Specialty:

  • Hyderabadi Dum Biryani – The main course dish made from basmati rice, goat/chicken meat, yogurt, spices, onion, and lemon.

  • Mirchi Ka Salan – A side dish which is eaten with the Hyderabadi Biryani. It is made from green chilies, sesame seeds, coconut, ginger, garlic, and spices.

  • Firni – A popular dessert of the Indian subcontinent, Firni is a rice pudding made by boiling rice with milk and sugar and flavored with cardamom, saffron and many dry fruits.

Where to Eat:

  • Banjara Hills

  • In the by-lanes of Charminar

  • Pather Ghatti

  • Tolichowki


Taste Trivia
:
The word Biryani is derived from the Persian language.

 

LUCKNOW, UTTAR PRADESH

Lucknow is the place to be if you want to relish the famous Awadhi cuisine. Influenced by the Mughal cooking techniques, the ‘Dum Pukht’ way of cooking was invented in the Awadh region of India. Dum Phukt is a slow oven cooking technique, where meat and vegetables are cooked over a very low flame, generally in sealed containers.

Here are some of the famous Indian food to relish when you are in Lucknow.

Specialty:

  • Tunday ke Kebab – The most popular variation of kebabs, it is made from finely minced meat. Plain yogurt, ginger, garlic, cloves, ghee, sugar, and lime are used to add flavors. Check out Lucknow food places for tunday kebab and other street food.

  • Shami Kebab – A local variation of kebab, it is made from minced meat stuffed in the form of a patty. Eaten as an appetizer, Shami Kebabs are usually boiled with chickpeas and have a range of hot spices.

  • Chaat and Samosa – Popular in the entire country, the combination of Chaat and Samosa originated in Uttar Pradesh. Chaat is a mixture of chickpeas, small pieces of potatoes, dried ginger and tamarind sauce.

Where to Eat:

  • Chowk Area

  • Aminabad Area

Taste Trivia:

Tunde Kebabs is said to incorporate more than 160 spices.

 

AMRITSAR, PUNJAB

A hub of faith and worship, Amritsar is the home to the Golden Temple and is a center of Sikh faith. With several dishes originating from Amritsar, it is a must visit place for people looking to add new flavors to their palate.

Here are some of the famous Indian food to relish when you are in Amritsar.

Specialty:

  • Amritsari Kulcha – A type of bread made from wheat flour, Amritsari Kulcha is typically served with chickpeas and an onion chutney.

  • Amritsari Dal Makhni – A dish made from black lentils, red kidney beans, butter, and cream. Dal Makhni is a staple food in many parts of the country. It is usually served with rice or naan bread.

  • Makki Di Roti and Sarson Da Saag – Sarson da Saag is prepared from mustard leaves, spices and is served with Makki Di Roti which is essentially an unleavened corn bread.

  • Amritsari Lassi – A yogurt based drink, Lassi is a blend of yogurt, water, and spices. It comes in both salty and sweet flavors. Lassi has many variations and is typically added with fruits such as mangoes.

Where to Eat:

  • Guru ka Langar at Golden Temple

  • Ranjit Avenue

  • Lawrence Road

  • Any local Dhaba

Taste Trivia:

Tandoor is traditionally associated with the Punjabi cuisine.

 

PANAJI, GOA

Goa is a synonym for fun in India. The party capital of the country, Goa has a rich history of food. Goan cuisine has seen a lot of adaptations since the Portuguese colonialization. An extensive range of flavors, from strict vegetarian to seafood, Goa hosts a culinary experience like no other place.

Here are some of the famous Indian food to relish when you are in Goa.

Specialty:

  • Ambot Tik – A hot favorite version of fish curry prepared with spice, coconut, garlic, ginger, and vinegar. It uses petals from ‘Kokum Solam’, a type of tart, for the sour effect.

  • Prawn Balchao – A method of cooking prawns in red, tangy sauce, and ‘galmbo’ (a paste made from dried shrimp).

  • Sorpotel – A Portuguese adaptation, it prepared from diced pork and flavored with red chilies.

Where to Eat:

  • Ashwem Beach

  • Anjuna Circle

  • Galgibag Beach

Taste Trivia:

Feni is the most popular alcoholic beverage in Goa and is made from coconut oil and cashews.

 

MUMBAI, MAHARASTRA

Mumbai is the home of Bollywood and is informally known as the entertainment capital of India. It is widely popular for its street food. Konkani Food highly dominates Mumbai.

 

Here are some of the famous Indian food to relish when you are in Mumbai.

Specialty:

  • Vada Pav – The most common street food in Mumbai, Vada Pav is cooked by deep frying a potato patty with spices and served in a bread roll.

  • Shakarpara – Small fried cookies, generally served in festival season.

  • Pav Bhaji – A fast food dish, made with thick vegetable curry and served with bread.

Where to Eat:

  • Juhu

  • Chowpatty

Taste Trivia:

Vada Pav is the Indian version of a burger.

 

These are just a few delectable offerings from the platter of famous Indian Food. The range of famous Indian food is so vast, it may indeed take a lifetime or more to truly immerse and experience its varied flavors and aromas. Which is your favorite Indian food?

 

You might want to check out our other food-related posts:

 

    

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92 thoughts on “Fly for Flavors: 5 Must Visit Indian Cities to Relish Divine Food

  1. garth Reply

    What a foodie inspiring post ! Love Indian food I hope to one day eat authentic dishes in the places they come from

  2. Oana Reply

    I am not a big fan of Indian food but this post made my mouth watering. Hopefully this year or the next one we will visit India and will taste some authentic food.

  3. Stella the Travelerette Reply

    These all look like amazing places to visit for food! I personally would enjoy Mumbai the most because I love street food and fried things, even if it’s not the healthiest. But I would also love to try the seafood in Goa. It all looks so different from the Westernized street food we get in NYC!

    • Simona Terron Reply

      @stella the travelerette Mumbai is by far the best place to sample all the other dishes even if they will be outside their original context. Loads of restaurants designed to suit various budgets offer specialty cuisines and sometimes bizarre but delish fusion foods combining different Indian cuisines. Or even those with an international twist. Look me up when you do visit, I’ll happily guide you on a streetfood and restaurant tour called Eat + Pray + Glug that I conduct with a fun local company called No Footprints. Look me up @SimonaTerron on instagram and Twitter if you like. Cheers!

  4. Shona Reply

    Some outstanding dishes there, some I’ve tried and some I’ve never heard of. I particularly liked your taste trivia, it’s good to know where flavours or dishes are derived from.

  5. Richelle Reply

    Oh wow this looks amazing! I’m in love with Indian curries but it’s good to know there’s so much more to Indian food than my spicy faves. I can’t wait to get to India!

  6. Cindy Collins Reply

    Oh my god this looks so delicious. I love Indian food and I’d be in heaven there. Sadly we haven’t made it to India yet but looking at all those photos I am really itching to go. Amritsar and the Golden temple have also been on the bucket list for a while so combining the two with some good indian food degustation sounds great. Great post. Thanks for sharing.

  7. anna Reply

    Oh wow this is super useful! Thank you for all the recommendations. I do admit I am now CRAVING some Indian food.

  8. Greg Reply

    ok, now I’m hungry! You must pay! I will be honest though, I have never tried Indian food before!

  9. Danik Reply

    I so can’t wait to get to India and check out the cuisine from all the regions. This has got me wetting my lips and all the photos make the food really yummy which needs to be in my tummy 🙂

  10. Joi Reply

    all these dishes look very good, and I think India they have options for vegetarians, I would love to go there and try something new.

  11. Travel Lexx Reply

    Food is one of the reasons why I want to go to India so much and your post has just made my mouth water! There are so many amazing regional specialities, many of which I haven’t even heard of! Loads to look forward to when I eventually do make it over. Thanks for sharing

  12. Midori Reply

    I love indian food soooo much! This post is great! I just went last night to an indian restaurant! It must be amazing to go in real one!

  13. Cat Reply

    Thank you for this informative post! As a big fan of Indian food, I’m always on the look out for great Indian dishes! It will be amazing to visit those cities and try out their famous dishes!

  14. Barb Reply

    I have been to Amritsar and it was beautiful. I should go back to India to check out the other four cities. They sound like great destinations.

  15. Lisa Reply

    What a wonderful gastronomy tour! It all looks delicious and I can only imagine what it smells like. Some of these I have never heard of so anxious to try one day. Another look at your wonderful country.

  16. Igor Mozek Reply

    Not sure what’s better…photos or descriptions! Article that makes you hungry! 🙂 We are always tasting traditional food when we travel, and I think this post pushed India on the top of our bucket list! 😀 Very very informative.

  17. Laura Lynch Reply

    I feel like I’m really missing out on a major food culture by not having visited India yet. I’m always amazed by the spices and flavors of the food my Indian friends make. It’s so intricate and harmonious. I’d love to learn to cook even one Indian dish as well as they do.

  18. knycx.journeying Reply

    Somehow Indian food is a bit too strong for me so I do not eat them in big portion; but a tasting dish and or a snacks sounds good to me. I like naan bread very much!!
    @knycx.journeying

  19. melody pittman Reply

    Indian food is my very favorite and I learned so much from your post. I don’t think any of the 5 hit the nail on the head for the dishes I prefer to have, which are generally curries, but I am a fan of everything I have tried. Gonna eat my way through India at some point in life.

  20. Katie Featherstone Reply

    I am so sad I still haven’t been to India. I would love to, just to enjoy the food if nothing else! I’ll save your article for reference if I make it there one day. I fancy some Chaat and Samosa. 🙂

  21. Vicki Louise Reply

    I haven’t eaten much Indian food so it was great to read about the different flavors and specialties. I’d love to try the Tunday ke Kebab and Vada Pav!

  22. Adelina Reply

    Yum! They all sound so good but that first photo of the biryani caught my eye. Love a good dish of rice

  23. Danijela WorldGlimpses Reply

    Like Indian food, even though never been to India and am impatient to taste it there! Just looking at your Hyderabadi Dum Biryani photo posted here makes my mouth water. 🙂

  24. staey veikalas Reply

    Awesome article, I love to know what the local food is when I am traveling so I get a taste the country as well. The hardest part is knowing what is good, or what to try, or what is local on a menu. I love Indian food everything here looks just scrumptious!

  25. Laura Sellwood Reply

    This has made me so hungry! I love Indian food – they just use such an amazing combination of spices and ingredients. I love trying local food so thank you for your recommendations!

  26. Mike Cotton Reply

    As a Brit, I’m somewhat in love with Indian food (or at least the British version) . I’d love to visit India and truly experience the food. Great post.

  27. Viki Reply

    When I went to India my favourite food by far was Masala Dosa – luckily they didn’t make it too spicy for me. It was quite hard for me to find decent food that wasn’t too spicy that it’d upset my stomach!

  28. Philip Reply

    Are all these foods vegan? They look delicious!

    I am trying to find good gluten free and vegan foods. Do you have any post on that?

  29. The Travel Ninjas Reply

    What a mouthwatering post! We love Indian food, and can’t wait to try everything on the list. It’s so useful that you included great cities to try out the different specialties. And you even included specific restaurants too. We’ve bookmarked this. Thanks so much for packing in all the great tips.

  30. Rob+Ann @TravelLatte(.net) Reply

    Oh, these look SO good! We really enjoy Indian cuisine – Ann loves the spice, Rob is a bit more mild. (Okay, a lot more mild!) It’s great to learn a bit more about the foods and regions. Fabulous post. Only…now we’re really hungry!

  31. Suruchi Reply

    I really like your blog and the way you collaborate things in your post. In this post, there are so many of my favorite dishes and now my taste buds are confused which one should I have now. This will be super helpful for the people traveling to these regions.

  32. Flo @ Yoga, Wine & Travel Reply

    I love all the different variations of Indian cuisine and I appreciate that it differs from region to region – your photos are making me so hungry! I absolutely adore mango lassi so it looks like a trip to Amritsar is in order!

  33. Abhinav Singh Reply

    I am from Lucknow and happy to see Lucknow in the list. In fact Lucknow has many native vegetarian dishes which get overshadowed by meat rich Mughlai food. I have also stayed in Mumbai in Maharashtra for 7 years and how badly I miss vada pao.

  34. Joanna Reply

    It’s so interesting to read about the different types of food in India and how they diverse from state to state. I didn’t know that tandoori is specific to Punjab state or that there is a strong drink made out of coconut oil and cashew. I love saag dishes so I would like to try the Sarson Da Saag.

  35. Brian Reply

    Hyderabadi Dum Biryani sounds like something I’ve had before. I love Portugal but they ruin your dish by adding pork to it!

  36. Carmen's Luxury Travel Reply

    Okay, I’m loving all of these suggestions. Indian food is my favorite and the spicier… the better! Will bookmark this for my future travels. Thanks for sharing and happy travels 🙂

  37. ZeeGoes Reply

    Oh my gosh! I am so bookmarking this for when I do visit India. The pictures are also beautiful, makes me want to explore India asap

  38. Carol Colborn Reply

    My husband loves Indian food. Sent him this post. Thanks lots!

  39. Angie (FeetDoTravel) Reply

    This food looks absolutely mouth-watering! When we were in Rajasthan, we were given an Indian cooking lesson and goodness me, it was fabulous! We were shown chunky chat potato which we continued to cook when we returned to the UK and a delicious pork dish (sorry, I forgot the name!). Thank you for showing us new foods to try! #feetdotravel

  40. Ami Reply

    Now that is rich food. 🙂 Indeed these places set your taste buds on fire. I particularly love Mumbai as it has a lovely combo of light food and heavy food. Not much of a Biryani fan. Nice list

  41. Chantell Collins Reply

    Indian curries are one of my all time favorite foods! And unfortunately I’ve never had an authentic one in India. The Pav Bhaji sounds so good! Actually all these dishes look amazing! I definitely need to get myself to India so I can try them all.

  42. Jeanette Reply

    If I ever get out to India I would definitely check out these restaurants! The food there looks so good with all their unusual spices.

  43. Kelly Reci Reply

    I’ve always longing for an indian food! my friend used to cook us indian food whenever she came back from her country! she’s from the middle east. that looks very tastyyy!!

  44. Elizabeth O. Reply

    I didn’t know this much about Indian food. I love tasting a country’s cuisine whenever​ I travel, for me, it’s one of the best ways to get to know them.

  45. Linda Reply

    I need to visit India! The food looks so delicious and I bet it’s like a dance of flavors on your taste buds!

  46. travel blogger Reply

    I lived in Kerala one summer, and the food was amazing! I would love to go back and spend time there again. I would really like to go to Goa and try the prawn balchao!

  47. Our Family World Reply

    I’ve never tried indian foods but I really appreciate their food culture that’s why I want to try it.

  48. Cindy Ingalls Reply

    I think the best way to experience the true cuisine of a culture is to visit the country of origin. I would love to go to India to try real Indian food.

  49. Tracy Reply

    Wow I love the look of that food! I enjoy Indian food but to have authentic dishes in each area would be amazing! Love learning more about India through your posts! #feetdotravel

  50. Barry Reply

    I’ve always been a big fan of Indian food and there’s still so many dishes for me to try. The good thing about travelling is you get to try Indian food in different countries too with their own mix added.

  51. TColeman Reply

    All of this food looks amazing! I have only had one Indian dish in my life and I can’t even remember the name. I need to try some more out.

  52. fouronaworldtrip Reply

    wow this looks super delicious! Each and every dish you are discribing.. I love indian food but what we are getting here in france seems to be only a tiny little share of variety. My only problem (and regret) is, that I can’t eat thaaaat spicy and have to skip on many dishes 🙁

  53. Madhurima Maiti Reply

    Yum! yum! yum! I am commenting here while drooling over these delicacies. The pictures look amazing! And you have just pointed out to the best places. Will be helpful for all food lovers. Thanks 🙂

  54. Only By Land Reply

    I’m not a huge fan of Indian food, I’m more of a burger fan! However some of the dishes you’ve described do sound delicious. It’s interesting to see which part of India each dish comes from.

  55. Sutee Reply

    I love traveling for food and seeing the different regional food. This guide is perfect for me. I can’t wait to try these one day:)

  56. Punita Malhotra Reply

    You won’t believe it..only last week I was thinking why someone doesn’t write a post about must-eat Indian dishes. Here it is now. Great selection across the regions. You have everything covered.

  57. neha Reply

    India has such a diverse range of cuisines. We often joke in our family that a lifetime will not be enough to try them all out, even if you are eating a different recipe every day. Thanks for compiling the best of best so that it helps others choose. These destinations are indeed very unique in the kind of cuisines they offer and the cuisines are also one of the best.

  58. Kate and Kris Reply

    Yum! There’s so much Indian food we’ve never heard of, and we eat a lot of what we think of as Indian in the UK. Great list to work through!

  59. Vinuta Reply

    Being a foodie I was drooling over your post. Very detailed and informative post. When I visit Amritsar and Lucknow, I am going to try all the dishes especially lassi and sarson ka saag and makki di roti. The food pictures are so amazing I wished I could just grab a bite. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on food.

  60. Vera Bortolotto Reply

    I never tried Indian food. I am a very picky eater but these look amazing.I may have to give it a try. I have been trying to expand my pallet.

  61. Rachel Reply

    I absolutely love Indian food! The spices are so intense and the colors of the food definitely make me want to eat it! I am one that eats with her eyes first!

  62. Betty Reply

    Wow this post made me super hungry! I only eat Indian food once in awhile so I don’t know the cuisine that well, but I do love their bread! Naan and roti are the best! I think I would like to try that fish curry, looks delicious!

  63. Melanie Reply

    I do not have much experience with Indian cuisine. I have a few Indian recipes that I have been wanting to create but have not done so yet. All of these dishes look delicious, and I wish that I could try them all!

  64. Jenn Reply

    On eo fmy best friends in high school was indian, and some of the food that I tried at her house was way too spicy for me. I guess I’m not very adventurous. These do look interesting though. If I were to travel, I’m sure I would enjoy trying new foods.

  65. Jennifer Van Huss Reply

    I love the flavour of Indian food. I am always afraid to order because I never know what to order! Thanks for the great list of items to choose and where to find them!

  66. Kiwi Reply

    I got hungry just looking at this! I actually went to a cute Indian spot by my friends house. We shared a roti meal together it was delish!

  67. Censie Sawyer Reply

    I honestly have never had INdian food. I would consider myself pretty picky when it comes to food but all of these recipes/dishes you are featuring have me wanting to try! YUM!

  68. Gina Reply

    I’m definitely pinning this and saving it for later. I like how you highlighted the delicacies of each reason and pointed out great places to eat. I especially wanted to try Mirchi Ka Salan since I’ve recently gone vegetarian. I’m also interested in Mumbai where I can eat Pav Bhaji. There’s nothing like a warm and delicious curry to soothe the soul.

  69. Laura Nalin Reply

    I seriously need to visit India, obviously for the culture and experience, but I want to eat all of this! One of my friends is from Mumbai and made us a vada pav a few months ago and it was the best! Each of these photos made me really hungry, and I’m so glad I have some leftover curry in the fridge right now! 😛

  70. Sarah Kim Reply

    Wow all these dishes look amazing. I’d love to go to India just to eat. Will bookmark this as a reference. Thank you!

  71. Nathan Reply

    I spent six weeks in India and although that’s quite a while for one country I feel like I barely saw any of the country. The food, however, was one of the highlights. I loved how different the food was from region to region. I would go back just for the food!

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