You Need to Try These 8 Pakistani Dishes Before You Die Pakistani Food – 21 Best Dishes to Eat When You’re in Pakistan!
The only thing people are likely to know about Pakistani food before visiting the country is that it’s spicy. What they’re likely to find after visiting, however, is that Pakistani food isn’t just spicy—it’s diverse, delicious, and worth eating well before your death! Here are 8 Pakistani dishes you need to try in Pakistan before you die.
1) Kadhi Pakoda
If you visit Pakistan and miss kadhi pakoda, then you have missed one of Pakistan’s most beloved dishes. Kadhi pakoda is a popular snack that is sold everywhere—restaurants, food stalls, street vendors; really anywhere you can find food in Pakistan. Made with deep-fried gram flour fritters with chickpeas as the main ingredient, it’s sometimes served as an appetizer but often eaten like a traditional snack. It’s not an everyday dish but certainly worth trying when you visit Pakistan in 2022.
Haleem is a popular dish in Pakistan. The typical meat used for Haleem is the goat, but chicken and mutton are also sometimes used. However, you should avoid consuming Haleem if you’re a vegetarian or pescetarian because it contains animal fat and bones. While many people enjoy consuming Haleem as a breakfast food or snack, in some parts of Pakistan, it’s also served at weddings and religious ceremonies. If you want to try Haleem but don’t want to consume goat meat, you can always use chicken instead.
Biryani is a popular staple of Pakistani cuisine and is widely considered one of Pakistan’s national dishes. In fact, it has been so widely served around South Asia that it has officially been recognized by Unesco as a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. Biryani consists of rice, cooked with spices and other ingredients such as vegetables or meat. And while there are many different types out there, basmati rice is most often used in authentic biryani dishes—which means that these amazing fragrant grains bring an extra special something to your dish.
4) Pav Bhaji
Pav Bhaji is a dish originating from Mumbai. The main ingredients of Pav Bhaji are vegetables like tomatoes, potatoes, onions, and bell peppers. A mix of spices that include coriander powder, red chili powder, cumin powder, garam masala, and amchur is used for seasoning. Pav bhaji usually comes with buns (or pav) and butter on top. To eat Pav Bhaji properly without making a mess it is advised to use cutlery instead of your hands. However, in some places, people may give you small pieces of roti or paratha that would be easier to eat while holding them in your hand. In essence, bhaji is just vegetables cooked with spices which makes it quite healthy if prepared carefully so no oil goes into it.
5) Tandoori Chicken
Tandoori chicken is a traditional Indian dish that’s essentially grilled chicken flavored with spices and yogurt. The key step in creating tandoori chicken is marinating, which typically takes place overnight so it can soak up all of those flavorful juices. Although tandoori chicken tastes delicious no matter how you cook it, grilling it on an open flame brings out its full flavor and texture, turning a one-dimensional dish into something special. Just make sure to leave your tandoori chicken alone for at least 10 minutes before you cut into it so all of those bold flavors can set in.
6) Shami Kabab
If you want to start a food argument, ask someone from Pakistan what their favorite type of kebab is. Without fail, they’ll tell you it’s shami kebab. Shami literally means made with meat/ground meat (minced), and Kabab means grilled meat – so that pretty much makes a Shami Kabab a grilled minced meat kebab. There are many different types of kababs in Pakistan, but at dinner parties in Karachi or Lahore, Shami kababs are usually served.
7) Mughlai Paratha
If you’re in Pakistan, there’s a good chance you haven’t yet tried Mughlai Paratha. The paratha is a dish of unleavened flatbread stuffed with ghee and spices that originated in India and was then adopted into Pakistani cuisine. It’s similar to naan, but it can be stuffed with meat or vegetables and it is best eaten fresh out of a tandoori oven or paired with onion chutney or pickles. (There are many varieties of Mughlai Paratha, so don’t feel limited to just one.) If you want to read more about Mughlai Paratha, we have an entire piece on it here.
8) Nihari Gosht
Nihari is a super popular spicy stew originating from Lahore, Pakistan. To make it, you’ll need beef that’s been slow-cooked for hours and served with a thick curry sauce flavored with garam masala and cinnamon. A local favorite for breakfast or dinner, Nihari is delicious in any season. If you don’t believe us when we say it tastes great at any time of day, then come see us after an all-nighter; we promise you won’t be disappointed!