If you are visiting Nepal and not try Nepali food, you will be missing a lot. But again, it is quite hard for visitors to know before hand what to eat and not eat. We are here to make it easy for you to decide.


This can be considered as the national dish of Nepal. Lentil is known as Dal in Nepali, Bhat is the boiled rice and Tarkari is the curry. Nepali curry for westerners is quite spicy and consists of different type of vegetables.

Local Foods

Nepali food, mainly in Kathmandu, is very much influenced by Tibetan and Chinese traditions. In the plains, called Tarai, the influence of Indian traditions is greater. Newars are quite particular in food habits, feasts, and festivals. Some of the best Newari foods are:

  • Chatamari – type of pizza made out of rice flour
  • Choee- tastes like salami
  • Alu Tama – Curry made of bamboo shoots and potatoes
  • Haku Choila: spiced ground meat, broiled
  • Bhuttan: intestines and abdominal parts fried
  • Mainh: fried tongue pieces
  • Bara: lentil based fried doughnut type snack.
  • Momo: the most favored dish in Nepal after Dal, Bhat, Tarkari
Image of a plate of momo
Nepal’s favorite snacks

Popular Meat Dishes

Nepalis mostly eat mutton, buff, chicken, and pork. Beef is a big no, considering more than 80% of people in Nepal are Hindus. Most of the meat prepared is spicy. Thukpa, Chicken Curry, Pork masu, Bungur Bhuttuwa are some of the best non-veg dishes.

Image of chicken Curry

Vegetarian Dishes

If you are a westerner, you might not be aware how many times and in dishes you eat meat. Few decades back, meat was considered luxury and was served only in feasts and festivals. Hence, Nepali society is quite rich in vegetarian dishes. Some of these dishes are:

  • Dal, Bhat, Tarkari
  • Vegetable Pulao
  • Alu achar (potato side dish)
  • Tomato pickle (Golveda ko achar)
  • Alu Dam (fried potato gravy)
  • Sel, Roti


Yes, Nepalese enjoy dessert too. Here are some Nepali desserts.

  • Curd (the best one is called Juju Dhau)
  • Jerry (a type of sweet)
  • Rasbari (sweetened milk ball)
  • Burfi

Nepali Drinks:

In alcoholic drinks we have:

  • Rakshi – prepared from rice or millet
  • Jaand – prepared from rice but not as strong as Rakshi

Non-alcoholic Drinks

  • Lassi – it is similar to milk-shake made up of curd
  • Chai – it is a type of tea, mostly with added milk
Image of tea

These are the few popular foods and beverages. The list could have been longer. If you really like and share this article I will be adding other Nepali cuisines.


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