30 Sec Answer: The food of 29 states in India can vary greatly, from regional specialties such as vada pav and dosa to more globally recognized dishes like tandoori chicken and kadhai paneer.
Indian cuisine is known for its rich flavors and diverse ingredients. With 29 different states, each with its own unique culture and traditions, it’s no surprise that the food varies greatly from region to region. In this article, we will explore the unique food of each state in India. From traditional dishes to modern-day interpretations, you are sure to find something that piques your interest!
Andhra Pradesh is known for its flavorful dishes, often featuring hot spices like red chili powder and curry leaves. Popular dishes include dosa (a type of savory crepe made with fermented batter), idli (steamed rice cakes), gongura (a sour leafy green vegetable), and biryani (rice dish cooked with spices).
Arunachal Pradesh is a north eastern state of India which shares borders with Assam, Nagaland, China and Bhutan. Its cuisine consists of various tribal recipes including Apong (local rice beer), Thukpa (noodle soup), Sha Phaley (fried bread) and Pasa (boiled potatoes).
Assam is one of the seven sisters states in northeast India. It has an interesting mix of cultures which influences its culinary offerings. Popular dishes include masor tenga (fish cooked in a sour gravy), aloo pitika (mashed potatoes with mustard oil) and sitalbhog (sweetened vermicelli pudding).
Bihar is an eastern Indian state that boasts an array of delicious foods. Commonly eaten items include litti chokha (baked wheat balls stuffed with spicy potato mixture), parwal ki mithai (dessert made from pointed gourd), malpua (fried sweet pancake) and ghugni chaat (snack consisting of boiled chickpeas).
Chhattisgarh is located in central India and offers a variety of mouth-watering delicacies. These include chila/cheela (savory pancakes made with lentils or rice flour), jalebi (deep-fried sweet snack made with maida flour), dhuska/dhokla (rice cake steamed in banana leaves) and tilgul laddu (sweet treat made from sesame seeds).
Goan cuisine incorporates many local flavors as well as elements from Portuguese cooking. Dishes include vindaloo (spicy pork stew usually served over rice), xacuti chicken/goat curry flavored with coconut, cardamom and cloves), sarapatel(mutton stew cooked with vinegar, tamarind, chillies, ginger and garlic) and bebinca(traditional layered dessert similar to a custard tart).
Gujarati food reflects the influence of neighboring cultures. Traditional dishes include dhokla (fermented savory cake made from chickpea flour), thepla(flatbread spiced with coriander seed powder, cumin seed powder and turmeric powder), khichdi(rice dish cooked with lentils) and undhiyu(vegetable dish cooked in earthen pots).
Haryana is a northern Indian state renowned for its hearty cuisine. Famous dishes include kadhi pakoda(curry dish made from yogurt, gram flour and deep fried pakodas or fritters), panjeeri(sweet snack made from wheat flour and sugar syrup) chole bhature(chickpeas served with fried flatbread) and besan ki barfi(dessert bar made from gram flour).
Himachal Pradesh offers an array of tasty treats originating from both Punjabi and Tibetan cuisines. Popular choices include thukpa(Tibetan noodle soup garnished with vegetables or meat), madra(mild yogurt-based curry cooked using pulses or vegetables), patrode(stuffed colocasia leaves steamed in banana leaves) and sepu badi(deep-fried lentil dumplings).
Jammu & Kashmir
Jammu & Kashmir’s varied landscape influences its distinctive culinary repertoire. Local favorites include rajma(red kidney beans simmered in onion tomato gravy), modur pulav(spicy pilaf prepared using mutton stock) yakhni pulao(flavored rice dish cooked in mutton broth) haak saag chaman(cooked greens accompanied by cottage cheese cubes).
Jharkhand’s rich cultural heritage makes for some truly amazing flavors when it comes to food. Specialties include chidwa or mahua ke laddu(balls of wheat mixed with jaggery syrup or palm toddy syrup ), litti chokha(wheat balls filled with spiced mashed potato filling), manpasanda kabab/boti kebab/(minced meat skewered on bamboo sticks) chura dahi / tarua daheenu/kari dahi((broken wheat tempered curd mixture).
Karnataka’s distinct regional cuisines make it a haven for food lovers. Dishes commonly enjoyed here are akki rotti/bhakri (flatbread made using either rice flour or wheat flour ), ragi mudde /raggi mudda/(boiled millet ball served with sambar/rasam ), bisi bele bath /bisibelabath/(rice based dish cooked with pulses ) neer dosa /neer dose/(light white pancakes made out of rice batter ).
Keralites have long been associated with their love for seafood due to their coastal location but there’s much more to their cuisine than that! Popular dishes here include avial (mixed vegetable curry seasoned with coconut oil ), puttu kadala Curry /puttukadalacurry/(steamcake served with black chickpeas curry ) appams/appa/(thin pancake made using fermented rice batter ) payasam /payasam/(vermicelli pudding flavored with cardamom ).
Madhya Pradesh is known for its vegetarian fare as well as fiery non-vegetarian options. Popular picks include palak paneer/palakpanir/(cottage cheese cubes simmered in spinach gravy ), bhutte ka kees/bhuttakese/(corn kernels blended into a creamy curry ) poha/pohay-(flattened rice flakes stir fried along herbs & spices ) anarsa /anarsah/(rice balls soaked in sugar syrup ).
When it comes to Maharashtra’s cuisine ,vada pav stands out above all else as its unofficial national dish . Other popular picks include sabudana khichdi/sabudankichadi/(savory porridge prepared using tapioca pearls ) misal pav /misalpav/(sprouts curry served over bread buns ) thalipeeth /thalipeth/(multi grain flatbread ) puran poli /puranpoliyu/(sweet flatbread stuffed with split peas ).