Before we talk about the famous food in Amritsar, let me tell you that this holy city is unofficially the culinary capital of India. A famous quote by M.F.K. Fisher, “First we eat then we do everything else” is perfectly true in case of Punjabi’s. Believe me…Punjabi’s are true gourmets.
It can be said that the biggest attraction in Amritsar, next to the Golden Temple is its famous, hearty food. The importance of food in Amritsar cannot be overemphasized. Here, every activity, be it prayers, celebrating festivals, or socializing involves scrumptious food.
No place can match the taste and quality of the famous food you can get in Amritsar. Be it the softness of kulcha, dripping hot jalebis, rich lassi, or juicy fish tikkas, every item is prepared on the spot, in front of your eyes and is completely fresh.
This article will take you on the culinary tour of Amritsar and at the end of it; you’ll be familiar with the famous food you need to try next time you visit in Amritsar.
Amritsari kulcha tops the list of the famous food in Amritsar. As the name suggests, Amritsar is home to the world-famous kulcha naan.
The refined flour roti is filled with a potato and masalas mixture. Then it is baked in the tandoor until golden crispy. Then this hot and flaky bread is topped with a generous amount of desi ghee or butter. Besides potato, there are other choices of filling too like cauliflower and cottage cheese.
Accompanied with chole, chutneys, sliced onions, and raita it makes for an irresistible option for breakfast. You have missed the essence of the famous food of Amritsar if you do not try this mouth-watering Amritsari kulcha.
You can easily find this kulcha naan at many spots in Amritsar, but Kulcha Land makes one of the best and are serving kulcha naan before partition.
Food in Amritsar can never be complete without a glass of Lassi. This makes it the best thing to drink in Amritsar. The famous Amritsari Lassi is made by churning yogurt with sugar in it and is topped with a layer of cream which gives it the required richness.
You can find this lassi being offered in many places. But hands down, the Gian di Lassi offers the best original thick lassi.
Guru Da Langar
The Golden Temple kitchen is the largest community kitchen in the world. Here, any person irrespective of his caste, creed, gender, or status can satisfy his hunger without spending a single penny.
The volunteers here cook a simple meal comprising of roti, dal, sabzi, and kheer. Though simple, the meal is extremely nourishing and appetizing. This kitchen serves over one lakh devotees every day.
Also don’t miss out on the Karah Prasad. Prasad is a blessing given in temples and gurudwaras. Karah is a pudding made by roasting whole wheat flour in loads of ghee and then adding sugar syrup. This is truly a blessing for your taste buds.
The famous food of Amritsar is not limited to kulcha and lassi only. Butter chicken would be a perfect treat for all my non-vegetarian friends out there. The dish is not only heavy in calories only; it is heavy on flavours too.
The chicken is marinated in thick, spiced yogurt which makes it juicy and tender. These chicken pieces are then added into a creamy sauce that is out of this world. The gravy has loads of butter and the addition of cream gives the sauce a silky smooth texture.
Paired with butter naans and you will be experiencing a heavenly bliss. You can visit Beera Chicken House on Majitha Road for best non-vegetarian food in Amritsar.
Jalebi and Gulab Jamun
Guru Ram Jalebi Wala at Katra Ahluwalia has only these things on its menu and it offers the best of both these delicacies. Jalebi is a famous deep-fried dessert that is soaked in sugar syrup. The mere sight of those crispy and piping hot jalebis, freshly made in front of you will be enough to arouse your taste buds.
As the name suggests, Gulab means rose and Jamun refers to berry. So gulab jamuns are soft, berry sized balls dipped in rose-flavoured sugar syrup. It is a classic Indian sweet made using khoya or milk solids, rose water, and sugar syrup. This famous food item is a must-try when you are in Amritsar.
Now, this food is very unique to Amritsar. Even in India, there many cities, where people have never heard of this absolute delight. This makes chaap one of the most famous foods in Amritsar.
Small pieces of soya chaap are marinated in a mixture of hung curd, spices, ginger, garlic, some cream, and lemon juice. Then these are roasted on the flames of burning coal directly. Again some spices and cream are added to it so that you get the juiciest feast on your plate.
Take a bite and you will experience the burst of flavours in your mouth. You will come across many street vendors offering this famous food item in Amritsar.
Amritsari Machli (fish)
The most desired non-vegetarian local food of Amritsar is Amritsari Machli. In this dish, the fish marinated in a batter of besan (gram flour) and spices and deep-fried which gives it a golden crust.
Crispy from outside and melt-in-mouth from inside, these fish pakodas when served with different sauces will touch your soul if you are a hardcore non-vegetarian. Makhan Fish and Chicken corner on Majitha road will serve you the best fish in town.
Makki di Roti and Sarson da Saag
This is undoubtedly the most famous food item of the traditional Amritsari cuisine. A popular winter speciality, Sarson da saag is made of fresh mustard leaves and loads of ghee. Saag is served with buttery corn-flour rotis known as Makki di Roti.
The place is located in a very narrow lane, but don’t worry, the heavenly smell of desi ghee and “daal makhani” will be enough to give you the directions. Honestly, the place is not a visual treat but the flavors will leave you completely spell bounded
You can visit kesar ka Dhaba for having this hearty meal, which is a 10-minute walk from the Golden Temple.
If you have heard of kulfi, then think of kulfa as its better version. This sweet heaven is a combination of many delightful ingredients. Starting with a layer of phirni, there is a kulfi. On this kulfi, there is an assortment of rabri, falooda, and some crushed ice.
Finally, it is topped with some gund (edible gum) and a dash of rose syrup. A-One Kulfa near Crystal Chownk serves this famous sweet art among many others.
Another savory dish of Amritsar which you can hardly find anywhere else is the famous Mathi chole. Made of refined flour, it is deep-fried in ghee until crispy in texture.
It is a very famous food item in India. But only in Amritsar, you will find it being served with hot and saucy chickpea curry. The two are a perfect match for each other. Hansraj Chole Wala at Basant Nagar serves the tastiest and cheapest mathi chole in Amritsar.
This was our list of the famous food to gorge on in Amritsar. If you enjoy North Indian cuisine, you will undoubtedly relish every bite of Amritsari food. There are many other places also offering north Indian cuisine, but no place can match the originality, richness, and authenticity of famous food of Amritsar.
And if you have never tried Amritsari or north Indian food, then plan your next trip to this holy city and get ready for the most amazing culinary adventure.
Comment down your favorite food item in Amritsar and share this article with your foodie friends who are keen to travel and explore.
You can also book our Food tour to explore the real taste of Amritsar. Our Story-teller will help you to understand the local food culture and tell you interesting stories, fun facts & recipes behind every dish.