Indian Traditional Food - Indian States and Their Food Items to Awaken your Taste Buds

Food & Drink

Appreciated by many other countries, Indian traditional food has a history fo 8000 years. Every state in India has its unique recipe; these regional dishes of different states of India have their own authenticity. The amazing use of the various flavour of spices, herbs make these delicacies stand out. Therefore, these incredibly delicious recipes of different Indian states are a must-try! Indeed, the astounding Indian states and their food items will surely awaken your taste buds.

Here is the list of 29 Indian Traditional Food - Indian States and Their Food Items to Awaken your Taste Buds

1. Misal Pav - Maharashtra

Misal Pav is quintessentially from Pune and is one of the most popular Maharashtrian breakfast, snack or even brunch. It is a street food popularly found in Mumbai. It has a spicy and tangy lentil curry which is made with moth beans and is served with Pav bread. At times, it is eaten with yoghurt to lessen the spice. Although it is a breakfast food but Maharashtrians enjoy it at time of the day.

2. Makki di Roti and Sarson da Saag - Punjab

Makki di Roti and Sarson da Saag make for the staple food in North India especially in the state of Punjab. This traditional Indian dish may not look very enticing at first, but it has an authentic flavour to it, and it is rich in nutritive value. Accompany it with a glass of lassi and one has the perfect combination for a healthy and fulfilling lunch.

3. Kosha Mangsho - West Bengal

Kosha Mangsho is a traditional dish prepared of Mutton (Goat meat) in every Bengali house. This dish of mutton with some thick curry is high on spices and richness. This dish is made with mutton and spices such as cloves, cinnamon, onion and garlic are used. This excellent recipe is full of the aroma and sweetness that is surely going to trigger your taste buds.

4. Dhokla - Gujarat

Dhokla is an authentic snack which has originated from the state of Gujarat. This traditional food item is prepared out of gram flour and chana dal. Plus it is a reasonably easy recipe which can be prepared quickly within half an hour. Dhokla coupled with some chilli paste and chutney makes for the perfect snack to enjoy with friends over gossiping sessions.

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5. Rogan Josh - Kashmir

A must try dish for all the Lamb or meat lovers, Rogan Josh, an aromatic lamb dish is one of the signature recipes of Kashmiri cuisine. It was introduced in India with the coming of the Mughals. Robust with flavours of browned onions, various spices and yoghurt, it is a very healthy low-fat dish. Try it with rice or naan and you will yearn for more.

6. Pongal - Tamil Nadu

This is a staple meal during every auspicious festival of Tamil Nadu. Besides the rice and sweet milk, the dish is cooked with ingredients like cardamom, green gram, raisins and cashew nuts. According to the traditional beliefs, Pongal is cooked in open space in the sunlight, as it is dedicated to the sun god. The dish has two variants- one that's sweet another that's savoury which is served on banana leaves.

7. Papaya Khar - Assam

This dish of Assamese cuisine is one of a kind. It is a delicious curry made from raw papaya, pulses, taro and also with a main non-vegetarian ingredient. All of these is then filtered through dried banana leaves which gives it a unique and an unexpectedly refreshing flavour. It is generally eaten with rice during lunch.

8. Litti Chokha - Bihar

The lip-smacking taste of Litti Chokha, savoured by one and all, needs no introduction. It is your grand welcome to the food of Bihar, in all its ghee-dripping glory. It consists of wheat and sattu with spices, kneaded into round spicy balls, dipped in ghee. The texture of Litti along with the crunchy crust makes it a foodie’s delight. Chokha is prepared by mashing boiled vegetables (most common being potatoes, brinjal, tomatoes), adding spices and chopped onion, garlic etc and served with Litti as a complimentary delicacy.

9. Dhaam - Himachal Pradesh

Dhaam is a complete food that along with a great taste promises a healthy dose of nutrients. The dish includes dal, rajma, rice, curd, boor ki Kadi and is very well complemented with gur (jaggery). Dhaam is a plate full of delicious delicacies that are a must-serve on the occasions and festivals. The distinctive feature about this dish is that it is prepared by special chefs known as ‘botis’. To grab the best taste of Dhaam you must visit Himachal during festivals.

10. Pootha Rekulu

Pootharekulu, one of the most popular sweet dish in Andhra Pradesh prepared during festivals, religious occasions. The water-like sweet is made extensively in Attreyapuram, a village in East Godavari district, AP. This unique saviour is prepared by rice batter, Ghee, and powdered sugar. Also, it is stuffed with various kinds of dry fruits to enrich the taste.

11. Hyderabadi Biryani - Telangana

Thanks to the major influence of Nizams in the state, Hyderabadi Biryani has come to be known worldwide as one of India’s jeweled food items. It is of two types; Kachchi gosht ki biryani and Pakki biryani. Marinated meat is cooked in layers of rice in a big handi which is covered with flat dough that eventually rises due to heat; indicating that the biryani is ready to be devoured.

12. Fish Curry - Goa

The Goan fish curry or the Xitti Kodi is the staple diet of every Goan. The Goan fish curry is loaded with various spices along with coconut. Raw mango is also used to give the dish a tangy flavour. The main ingredients of the dish are a decent sized Pomfret and a raw mango. Instead of Pomfret, Kingfish may also be used. This Goan dish is served along with rice.

13. Kafuli - Uttarakhand

This dish is a boon for all the diet-conscious people out there. Yes, it is actually that nutritious. Kafuli is a dish that all the locals of Uttarakhand swear by. It is basically primarily prepared of Spinach and fenugreek leaves, which even the doctors, prescribe. It is an exotic dish, prepared in an iron kadhai, and complemented by hot steaming rice. It is the most nourishing and health-conscious dish you will come across in the State.

14. Chakhwi - Tripura

Chakhwi is a delicious main course dish in Tripura. This amazing dish is mainly prepared with pork and chicken since most of the Tripura cuisines are based on meat. Also, most of the Tripuri dishes are made of less oil. Bamboo shoot is another primary ingredient of this traditional dish, Chakhwi.

15. Rugra - Jharkhand

Rugra is an item which tastes like mushroom and is very delicious to eat. Rugra is basically an indigenous variety of vegetable, rich in protein and minerals and high on calorific value. This is thus a very healthy dish. It is available in abundance during the monsoon season. This dish is preferred by the local people and is high in demand during the peak seasons.

16. Chenna Poda - Odisha

Odisha's very own cheesecake! The one sweet that Odisha is famous for - Chhena Poda, also known to be Lord Jagannath's favourite sweet and is often offered to him at the Puri Temple. The lingering taste of burnt home-made cottage cheese and semolina combined with sugar syrup simply blow away your mind. This rare dessert is baked for several hours until it becomes red and the caramelised sugar brings out the distinct flavour of Chhena Poda. Being sold in almost every nook and corner, this dish is simple, easy and absolutely delicious.

17. Daal Bhaati Churma - Rajasthan

This famous Rajasthani dish needs no introduction. Dal bati churma is synonymous to Rajasthan; known for its crunchy batis, dipped in ghee along with spicy daal and sweet churma. This delicious dish is prepared using various dals such as Chana dal, mung dal, Urad dal etc.

18. Appam - Kerala

Ask anybody from Kerala what their favourite dish is from back home and they will swear by appam and stew! I think it's justified for them to do so because appam is just something that seems to be a revolution in the food world. It is a rice pancake with a soft and thick centre and a crispy, paper thin outside. No matter what you eat it with, appam will increase that dish's taste value beyond hundred! However, it is usually paired with a southern style stew where chunks of any kind of meat in smothered in a silky, rich, dreamy coconut curry which will leave you sad when it finishes.

19. Jadoh - Meghalaya

Jadoh is a very popular dish among the Khasi community of Meghalaya. It is especially appetising because of its rich and unique colour.  Jadoh is basically red rice, cooked with generous amounts of pork meat. Sometimes, it is also cooked with chicken or fish. A mix of green chillies, onions, ginger, turmeric, black pepper and bay leaves is made, then pieces of pork are added and fried off, after which the red rice is added and cooked off. The addition of turmeric imparts the rice its rich yellow colour and an aromatic flavour. For those willing to be more adventurous, Jadoh can also be cooked in pork blood. If you love pork, this is a dish not to be missed.

20. Kangshoi

This dish is very popular in Manipur. It is a vegetable stew. It consists of seasonal vegetables that are boiled and flavoured with sliced onions, cloves, salt, garlic, maroi and a bit of ginger. This stew is served with rice or fish and is supposed to be consumed piping hot.

21. Bhutte Ka Kees - Madhya Pradesh

Another healthy and yet delicious delicacy of Madhya Pradesh is Bhutte Ka Kees. As the name clearly suggests, this dish mainly comprises of corns. Grated corns are well-cooked with spices and skimmed milk which adds a slightly sweet taste to the dish. Mustard seeds and green chillies are further added to enhance the taste of this authentic cuisine of Madhya Pradesh.

22. Bajara Khichri - Haryana

Khichri is had almost throughout the country. However, what makes Haryana Khichri so popular is that instead of rice, Bajara is used. For preparing bajara khichri, bajara is soaked overnight. Then Moong daal and bajara are washed together and cooked in a pressure cooker along with spices. We all know that bajara is very good for health as it is a hardy crop (grows even in harsh conditions and is easily found). Thus this recipe is recommended to all especially to those who do not wish to have rice.

23. Thukpa - Arunachal Pradesh

Thukpa is a kind of noodle soup of Tibetan origin that has found its way to being one of the most loved food in Sikkim. Thukpa is something that is very healthy and tasty at the same time - a rare combination to find, isn't it? One can find both vegetables as well as chicken thukpa here and mind you both are worth trying. One can find almost every kind of locally grown vegetable in this soup, but the most common ones are carrots, bell peppers, spinach, cauliflower and celery. It is rich in spices too and has an enriching taste. One serving is enough for an individual, but no one can stop at one because why not. 

24. Bisi Bele Bath - Karnataka

Bisi Bele Bath is a traditional recipe of Karnataka that is prepared in every Kannadiga's home. The dish has a distinct coconut flavour and is available at any restaurant in Bangalore. The recipe is a complicated one that involves many vegetables and flavours but the dish is a must-try.

25. Pork With Bamboo Shots - Nagaland

Bamboo shoot is an important ingredient in almost the whole of the North Eastern part of India. It is mainly used in pork preparation. The Bamboo shoot is used in both dried and fermented form. It gives a little sour flavour to the dishes. Some of the popular dishes are that use Bamboo shoot as an important ingredient are: Pork with Bamboo shoot, Fish with Bamboo shoot

26. Misa Mach Poora - Mizoram

Misa Mach Poora is a mouth-watering side dish. It is grilled shrimp cooked in mustard oil, lemon juice, orange zest and assorted spices. Apart from these dishes, what you must also try while in Mizoram, are their two popular drinks. One of them is Zu, or the local tea which they like to drink with almost every meal. The second is the Lubrusca grape wine, which is another favourite among the locals. If you happen to visit beautiful Mizoram anytime soon, don’t forget to eat and drink any or all of these items, to your heart’s content.

27. Chhattisgarh

What we all enjoy eating in all the parts of India is a gift from the Chhattisgarh region. Chila is flat chapati like dish which is prepared with the rice batter mixed with the Urad Daal. The dish is very easy to cook and is very delicious in the taste. Chila is an important part of the breakfast meal of the people of Chhattisgarh. To grab the best taste of Chila, complement it with the green chutney.

28. Tunday Kebab - Uttar Pradesh

The tender Tunday kebabs of Lucknow are famous for their savoury and melt in your mouth flavour. These Kebabs are made from lamb or buffalo meat with more than a 100 spices are added to give it it's a unique flavour. The origins of the Tunday Kebab date back to the 17th century. The Nawab at the time had lost many of his teeth due to his old age and was craving for his favourite Kebabs which he could not chew. Therefore, the Nawab came up with a plan to hold a cooking contest. The challenge was, that the participants had to cook a kebab that would melt in the Nawab's mouth and still taste amazing.

29. Momos - Sikkim

Momos, who doesn't love momos? Sikkim and Momos are complementary to one another. Sikkim is the place that is going to serve you the best momos you'll ever taste in your life. Believed to be of Tibetan origin and modulated by the Nepalese cuisine the momos are the lifeline of Sikkim. Momo is a small package of steamed bun with some fillings. Momo typically consists of two parts - the cover and the filling. The cover is made of dough made of white flour and water. Sometimes yeast or baking soda is also added to the dough to enhance the texture of the momos. Originally these momos were made with ground meat fillings, but over the years a lot of modifications have been made that have made dumplings even better.

So, when are you going to taste these yummy, delicious cuisines of various Indian states? Do not forget to share your experience with us in the comment section below.

This post was published by Harshitha

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