6 Best Nepalese Cuisine You Cannot Forget

They say – to reach the soul of a place, you have to try the famous cuisines. When it comes to Nepal, the country offers various dishes from simple meal to spicy pickles to dishes of traditional hierarchy.

Interestingly, it is often noticed the local climate hugely influence the local cuisine of a certain place. And at the same time, the geographical diversity too is affected much when it comes to cuisine of that region. Nepal is no different. Like every other region, the country has got its own specialty in food, with a huge variety of flavours and aromas varying as per the changing seasons. Often topped with lemon and green chillies along with pickles and chutneys, Nepalese cuisines do stand out.

Let us treat our taste-buds with 6 best Nepalese cuisines that we bet you can’t forget in a hurry. Keep your checklist handy, and along with trekking some of the most beautiful regions of Nepal, do make sure to tickle your senses with some of these dishes that make Nepal special.


1. Newa Cuisine

Consisting of more than 200 different dishes, Newa cuisine is a popular Nepalese cuisine. Most of the dishes are cooked over slow flame, and hence require lots of patience and time. On the same note, few of the famous dishes of Newa cuisine might also need two days preparation time. The raw material to be prepared are marinated and dried before cooking them to make lip-smacking dishes.

The most common preparations use buffalo meat traditionally, though the vegetarians prefer with tofu and cottage cheese. The raw products are marinated in spices and cooked over several items like fried meat, dried wheat stalks, fried liver, sour soup, bone marrow filled leaf tripe, and jellied fish soup. Newa cuisine has a range of desserts which includes yoghurt, fruits and aamli fruit. Newari cuisine also offers a number of homemade liquors made locally that are included as an integral part of any serving.

Some of the popular dishes of Newa Cuisine:

• Aalu Achar
• Dhau
• Lakhmari
• Sanyaa
• Thwon
• Yomari
• Alu Tama
• Sanyaakhunya
• Sapu Mhicha
• Pau kwa
• Wo
• Aila

2. Khas or Pahari Cuisine

Among the most special and must-try Nepalese cuisines is the Khas or Pahari Cuisine. The main ingredients used in Pahari cuisines are maize, buckwheat or millet bread. These are served along with potato, cauliflower, pumpkin, green beans, daikon radish and dried green dishes to mention a few. As a matter of fact, the staple food of Nepal, a refreshing plate of Dal-Bhat traditionally belongs to the Khas people. Dal Bhat is mainly rice served with lentil soup and vegetable curry or chicken/meat. Not only it is wholesome and filling after a whole day trekking, but is extremely nutritious and healthy.

Famous Khas or Pahari Cuisine:

• Dal Bhat
• Tarkari – curried vegetables
• Fruits like mandarin orange, lemon, asian, pear, bayberry, mangoes and khaffir lime
• Non-veg side dish - curried meat, fish, chicken, buffalo and yak meat
• Chiya – drink (spiced tea)
• Chang – alcoholic beverage

3. Madhesi Cuisine

The famous Madhesi cuisine in Nepalese cuisine is influenced by Awadhi taste and flavour. The dish is known differently in a wide number of places including Maithili, Tharu and Bhojupri depending upon the area where it is prepared. The method of preparation slightly varies, though the main ingredients are kept similar in whichever region it is prepared. The most commonly used items include sea animals like prawns, freshwater crab, snails, fried taro leaf cakes, along with rice and lentil dumplings and dried fish as the main ingredient which contribute as integral parts of this particular cuisine of Nepal.

Madhesi cuisine involves lots of diversification and variations as compared to other cuisines – thanks to the plenty of crops grown in Terai region which accounts for more than 80% of total agricultural land.

Popular Madhesi cuisine:

• Roti tarkari
• Pakoras – crispy fritter
• Littis - gram flour flatbread
• Thekuwa – cookie made out of wheat flour
• Bhusuwa – flatbread made out of rice flour as the main ingredient
• Malpuwa – sweet wheat fritter (dessert)
• Dahi Bara – entil dumpling topped with a savory gravy of yoghurt, tamarind and spices

4. Himalayan Cuisine

Himalayan Cuisine in Nepal is a popular one which is prepared at high altitude where the presence of winter is felt at its full bloom. To fight the chills, using of barley, millet and buckwheat makes integral ingredients of almost every dish of Himalayan cuisine.

Rice is another popular addition which is included in big proportions in every Himalayan food. Yak meat, Yak butter and Yak milk are among those which are not let out when talking about Himalayan cuisine.

Well-known Himalayan cuisine:

• Butter tea
• Red leaves vegetables
• Nepali Tea
• Gundruk

5. Lohrung Cuisine

Another famous Nepalese cuisine is Lohrung in which locally found ingredients are found in abundance. Most of the dishes in Lohrung cuisine are spicy and delectable, and bear a distinguishable taste of this particular cuisine different from others.

Famous Lohrung dishes:

• Sel roti
• Dhule Achar
• Chamre Yangpen
• Dibu
• Saruwa
• Mahi – buttermilk
• Raksi
• Tongba

6. Tibetan Cuisine

The Himalayan region is not fertile as compared to other regions of Nepal. Moreover, the excessive snowfall makes the climate painfully cold. The most common food crops grown in this region are buckwheat, millet, naked barley, common beans, and high-altitude rice. People raise cattle like yak, chauries (yak and cow crossed), Himalayan goats, and sheep to get products like meat, milk, cheese, and yogurt.

Because of the extreme cold temperature in the region, Tibetan cuisine mostly comprises of dishes that would make the consumers hot and warm.

Some common Tibetan dishes you should never miss are:

• Soup
• Momo
• Thukkpa
• Strong Nepali tea
• Strong local alcohol

Miscellaneous street food:

Apart from these famous cuisines and dishes found in Nepal which you must never miss treating yourself with, there are several other snacks, appetizers, and drinks that have crawled into Nepali cuisine blending the traditional with the right touch of Nepal. Few of them include:
• Samosas – Indian snacks made of wheat flour fried and filled with meat or potato fillers.
• Panipuri – Balls with filler and tangy water
• Nepali Tea – Warm black tea, spiced with milk and heaps of sugar
• Lassi – Yoghurt drink
• Everest Beer – Local Nepali beer
• Juju Dhau – Rich, creamy and flavourful curd drink
• Yomari – Sweet bun

All set with the scrumptious Nepalese cuisine checklist? Start off with your food voyage. Bon appetite!

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