The crowded yet very lively city of Hyderabad in Telangana, India, ensures an exciting stay with its wide range of activities. There are really a lot of places to see and things to do while you are in the city. You can visit one of its very historic museums, be awestruck by its amazing buildings and architecture, explore ancient monuments, and a whole lot more. Of course, trying out some local dishes should not be forgotten while you are in the city. Here is your guide to the best street food you must try in Hyderabad, Telangana.
1. Boti kebab (spicy goat meat on skewers)
Boti kebab is one of the many variants of Indian kebab. Its ingredients include chunks of meat which is either lamb, mutton, chicken or beef which is marinated into a combination of yogurt, papaya, garlic, ginger, chilis, and various spices like garam masala, chili powder, and cumin. The marinated meat chunks are then skewered and grilled while being brushed with ghee. They are usually served as snacks or appetizers combined with raw onions, sliced lemons, chutneys, and Indian bread.
2. Haleem (rich lentil and mutton stew)
Haleem is a rich lentil stew made from mutton meat. It is very popular in the Middle East and Asia, particularly in India. While the dish is very common especially in Hyderabad, haleem actually has its origins that can be traced back to ancient Persia. It is usually eaten in many parts of the world. However, it is usually eaten by Muslims, especially during Ramadan, when they break their fast during Iftar.
3. Biryani (mixed rice dish)
Biryani is a dish that celebrates all of the goodness of Indian cuisine. It has very nice aromas, bright colors, the very soft rice, and appetizing flavors of curry. It has the perfect combination of chicken meat, rice, and vegetables that will surely make your taste buds and your tummy satisfied. The dish is highly connected with its Indian roots and has an elaborate cooking procedure and ingredients.
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4. Faluda (milk-based cold dessert)
If Japan has its kakigori and the Philippines has its halo-halo, then India also has its own cold dessert known as faluda. Known for its distinctive pink color, the Faluda is an ice cream dessert that is made by layering basil seeds, vermicelli, and rose syrup then topped off with milk, ice cream, and pistachios. The dessert is truly a must-eat after trying out some of Hyderabad’s major street foods. Everyone will surely love trying out this dessert, a sweet tooth or not.
5. Dosa (Indian crepe)
Dosa is a very famous South Indian dish that resembles your usual crepes. Known to be one of the best Indian comfort foods, it is made from fermented rice and can be served plain or with side dishes like sambar, chutneys, gravy, and curry. You can definitely have dosa for breakfast, lunch and even dinner as it is very easy on the stomach has a low-calorie content. It is available in both crispy and non-crispy variants, with or without masala inside, but it is definitely served with a coconut chutney and saambar (tangy lentil soup).
6. Masala puri (spicy Indian snack)
Masala puri is a spicy dish that is considered one of the most popular street food in Hyderabad. The dish is perfect during cold and gloomy days or nights when you are just inside your home cuddling and craving for some hot comfort food. It tastes mainly spicy but with a little sweetness. Masala puri is usually served with peas and gravy on top and is finished off with chopped onions, tomatoes, and coriander. There are many variants of masala puri and it is customized as per the taste of the consumer.
7. Nihari (rich mutton stew)
Nihari is a very delicious flour-based stew made with slow-cooked mutton meat and a variety of spices. A usual nihari takes up to four hours to be completely cooked but it is just easy to prepare it. In ancient times, the nihari was cooked overnight so that it would be cooked just in time for the Mughal Kings of Delhi to have their breakfast after they pray in the morning. Today, the dish is available in all parts of the world. However, as it takes a long time to cook, Nihari is usually served during special occasions such as Eid dinners and other festivals.
8. Lukhmi (mince savory)
One of the most popular snacks in Hyderabad is lukhmi, a flaky bread stuffed with spicy minced meat. It is usually served as a starter or an appetizer during traditional weddings or with tea over a chat with your family and friends. While the most popular shape for lukhmi is square, it can also be formed into other shapes like triangles. There is also a vegetarian variant of lukhmi which has potato filling instead of meat.
9. Onion samosa (deep-fried pastry)
Samosa is another Indian pastry snack that is usually spicy and is deep-fried. It is very popular not only in India and in Asia but also in the eastern part of Africa, particularly in Kenya, Tanzania, and South Africa. The dish is considered to be everyone’s all-time favorite tea time snack. It can be also served during a snack party with family and friends or as a snack to some unexpected guests. In Hyderabad, the same snack is very popular but the variety is different from what you will find across the rest of the country. You will majorly find onion samosa on the street side selling like hot cake. These are popularly called Irani samosas only because Irani tea stalls and cafes sell this variant.
10. Mirchi bhajji (deep-fried pepper fritters)
Mirchi bhajji is another famous Indian street food in Hyderabad that is made by frying green chilies dipped in a batter. Also known as the mirapakaya bajji in Telugu, milagai bajji in Tamil and chilli bhajji in other parts of the country, it is really a best seller along the streets of Hyderabad. The word “mirchi” actually means “chilies” and the word “bhajji” translates to deep-fried fritters that are made from flour. It is usually served as a snack during tea times. It is also best served with coffee. The dish is usually served without condiments as the dish is delicious by itself.
11. Phirni (ground rice pudding)
Indians usually celebrate the unfolding of a new year by holding the Baisakhi, a festival that includes cooking and eating the best traditional dishes and delicacies. Celebrating Baisakhi would not be complete without delectable desserts such as the very sweet and delicious phirni which everyone loves to eat. Phirni is a very famous North Indian sweet dessert that is made with ground rice and milk. Aside from Baisakhi, phirni is also served during other Indian festivals and celebrations like Diwali, Holi, and Eid. Phirni can be prepared very easily and won’t take even a full hour as phirni’s ingredients are readily available in a usual Indian kitchen.
12. Qubani ka meetha (traditional Hyderabadi dessert)
The qubani ka meetha is yet another popular Indian dessert that is savory and sweet. It is a very delicious treat made using simple ingredients such as dried apricots, sugar, rose water, and saffron strands. This delicious dessert was served only to the royalties in ancient times, but today, it is also a street-side delicacy. The dish can be identified with its royal gold color and is also a staple during special events like Diwali, birthdays, weddings, and other festivals. It is also very easy to make and would not cost you more than an hour to finish everything.
13. Double roti (bun sandwich)
Long before the British colonized and took control over the whole of India, traditional Indian bread like chapatti, parantha, roti, poori or naan were usually prepared and baked unleavened. Bread only became popular in the country when the British established their presence here. Since sandwiches are literally two pieces of bread with either meat, vegetables or a combination of both with veggies in the middle, it is where the natives coined the term “double roti” (two pieces of bread). However, today, the term has just become synonymous with ordinary bread.
14. Mirchi ka salan (curried chilli pepper)
Indian cuisine is really known for its excessive use of chilis and other kinds of spices in their curries. But what if they combine both chilis and curries? The result - mirchi ka salan. This dish is basically curried chili peppers and is an extremely delicious but very complicated dish originating in Hyderabad. It is prepared by cooking green pepper over a combination of tamarind, spices, and peanuts that form a very unique blend. It is one of the most popular dishes and should be tried with chapatti, biryani, paratha, and rice. Some even use yogurt as an alternative to tamarind to level up its tanginess.
Try some of the great street foods of Hyderabad
Hyderabad is a historic city with age-old establishments and remnants of the Mughal era. You will never run out of places to visit and even food and dishes to try while you explore the city. You should be able to try out at least a couple of these great street delicacies the next time you visit Hyderabad. Bon appetit!
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