11 Popular Foods You Must Try in Nepal

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Many of you must have known Nepal for being the country of Everest or having the place where Lord buddha was born. But do you know that Nepal is rich in Food traditions as well?

So If you are planning a visit in Nepal or if you are roaming around the streets in Nepal, then this article is going to help you plan your food in Nepal.

What are the Nepali cuisines you must try in Nepal? Here I have tried to include 11 foods that you must try when in Nepal.

You must know that Nepali food is much influenced from the ingredients and cooking techniques and also the type and varieties of food available in different regions vary according to the cultivation in different regions and also cultures and traditions as well.

Also the nepali foods are rich in nutritional value and are healthier and hygienic as well.

Check: Best Street Foods In Nepal

I hope this list of must have foods when in Nepal will help you the with planning the food that you will have during your stay in Nepal.

So let’s start our list.

Foods You Must Try In Nepal

1. Dal Bhat Tarkari

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If you ask a typical Nepali about his/her favourite food, I can claim that most of their answer will be either Dal Bhat Tarkari or Mo:Mo.

Dal Bhat Tarkari is the staple food in Nepal eaten two times a day.

Bhaat (Steamed Rice) is served with Dal (lentils) and Tarkari (curry). The curry may vary in various places as per the availability of vegetables in the place.

Dal is prepared from variety of beans, lentils and peas. Variety of Dals are available in Nepal and they all have different flavours and taste.

Vegetable curry varies according to the regions and seasons. Often locally available green vegetables are available in Tarkari.

Daal, Bhaat, Tarkari is often accompanied with Aachar (fermented pickle) or Chutney. Also curried meat is served with rice in special occasions and festivals.

Tip: If you are looking for an authentic place to eat Dal Bhat Tarkari then I would suggest you to look for a Thakali restaurant no matter wherever you are in Nepal.

2. Mo:Mo

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Mo:mo is another popular dish in Nepal without any haters.

Momos are nepali dumplings with meat or vegetables. Various types of Momos are available in Nepal with various types of fillings and dipping sauce.

Momos are actually bite sized dumplings filled with vegetables and wrapped in doughs. The filling is usually of mutton, buff or chicken. Also the momos with fat is preferred as it gives juicy texture to momos.

They are actually served steamed or steam-fried.

Also in many places you will see different variety of fillings in momos. Even chocolate and paneer momos are available in different parts of Kathmandu in Nepal.

And most of the times Momos are served with chutney and jhol momo or momos dipped in soup are another most popular variety of popular dish in Nepal.

You must try Jhol momo, steamed momo with chilli pickle and fry momos in Nepal.

3. Newari Khaja Set(Samay Baji)

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Newari Khaja set or locally called Samay baji is an authentic traditional Newari dish popular in Nepal. It is served as starter in many festivals and religious activities.

Samay baji consists of many food items that represents good luck, prosperity, fortune, health and longevity as stated by Taste of Nepal.

Samay baji consists of many items served on a single plate. It has cheura or beaten rice, barbecued and marinated buffalo meat, fried and sandheko black soybean, boiled-fried eggs, saag (green leaves), spicy potato(piro aloo) and white rice wine.

The samay baji is taken during festivals like Indra jatra, Tihar and Dashain.

Tip: As this is a traditional newari dish, the authentic place to eat Samay baji would be a authentic Newari restaurant.

4. Sukuti

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Sukuti is traditional dish of Limbu people.

It is actually dried meat. It is prepared by cutting meat into thin stripes removing the fat and mixing it with spices, chillies and pepper and drying in the sun or cooking fire in the kitchen.

The dried meat is later consumed either by frying or roasting it. Sukuti is served alone as appetizer or mixed with other foods like Thukpa and Chow Mein.

Sukuti is also served with rice wines and local liquors in local liquor stores in many places of Nepal.

Sukuti is widely consumed in Mountains and hilly region of Nepal. Also it is available in most restaurants in Nepal.

5. Thukpa

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Thukpa is a healthy noodle soup served with thick soup mixed with seasonal vegetables and local spices.

It is popularly available in higher altitudes and best for trekkers to beat the cold.

Thukpa is actually a tibetan dish originated from eastern part of Tibet.

The Nepalese version of thukpa consists of noodle soup and seasonal vegetables and also meat or sukuti of goat, chicken or buffalo meat.

It is also available in many restaurants of Kathmandu and other places of Nepal.

If you want to try the best Thukpa, try visiting a tibetan restaurant in the city.

6. Aalu Tama

Aloo tama bodi
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Aalu tama is an amazing dish to try in Nepal. Aalu tama consists of Aalu (potato) and tama (tender bamboo shoots) cooked as curry.

Sometimes tama is fermented and stored and is then cooked with potato which is much sour in taste than fresh tama aalu.

It can be accompanied with beans and called aloo tama bodi.

You can get it served in most Newari restaurants in Nepal.

7. Juju Dhau

Juju dhau of bhaktapur
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Juju dhau is sweetened yoghurt served in many places of Kathmandu and Bhaktapur. It is the staple dessert in Newari feasts and speciality of Bhaktapur.

Juju Dhau literally means “Kings of yogurt” in Newari language.

Buffalo’s milk is used to make juju dhau which is rich in taste and texture.

Juju Dhau is usually served in clay pots or plastic cups in many places of Bhaktapur.

It is prepared by first boiling the buffalo milk, sweetening it and leaving it to pasteurize in red clay pots.

Tips: To taste the real Juju dhau, I would recommend you to head over to Bhaktapur city where it is available in almost every local areas.

8. Dhindo Or Dhido

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Dhido is prepared by adding flour in boiling water and continuously stirring the mix. It is taken as main meal in various parts of Nepal.

It is traditionally prepared from buckwheat or millet. Wheat and corn flour are also used to prepare dhido.

It used to be the staple meal in Nepal but Dal bhat tarkari has taken over it.

But you can still find Dhido served with Gundruk (fermented leafy vegetables cooked with soup) in many thakali restaurants in different parts of the country.

It is eaten by rolling it as a ball, dipping it in dal or gundruk and swallowing it. Dhido is not to be chewed as it sticks in the mouth if you try to eat it by chewing.

9. Chatamari

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Chatamari is another amazing Newari dish. It is most commonly called Newari pizza in Nepal.

Many varieties of chatamari are available in Nepal like egg, keema and plain chatamari.

It is round thin bread made of rice topped with chicken or buff keema and cracked egg sprinkled with chopped coriander leaves and sliced tomatoes .

It is served as appetizer in many restaurants in Kathmandu.

10. Selroti

Selroti in nepal
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Sel Roti is traditional nepali homemade, sweet ring shaped rice bread/doughnut prepared from semi-liquid rice flour batter adding sugar and ghee and frying it in hot oil or ghee.

You can say Sel rotis are the nepali version of doughnuts.

It is mainly prepared in special occasions and festivals like Dashain, Tihar and even on Nepali weddings.

Sel Roti is served with curry, aachar or even meat.

You can taste sel rotis in almost every part of Kathmandu and others places of Nepal in local restaurants.

11. Yomari

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Yomari is a steamed dumpling where the cover is prepared from rice flour and having sweet inner filling of chaku or khuwa. It is an important traditional food of Newaa society and prepared specially during Yomari Punhi festival.

You can try Yomari in different restaurants in Kathmandu.

Other Items To Try:

Kheer: It is rice pudding, prepared by boiling rice with milk and adding sugar and other dry fruits. It is served as dessert and prepared in different special occasions in nepali kitchen.

Kwati: Kwati is prepared from the mixture of nine sprouted beans eaten specially during Janai Purnima.  

Bara: Traditional newari snack which is just like a pancake of black lentil .

Choila: Traditional newari dish that consist of spicy grilled buffalo meat. Nowadays mutton and chicken are also used to prepare choila.

Final Thoughts:

I hope this list will help you know about some awesome dishes in Nepal. These are some of the foods you must try when you are in Nepal.

What are the other foods that you loved about Nepal? How had it been your food experience in Nepal?

Don’t forget to share them below with everyone in the comments below.

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