Explorer Diaries: Bhopal on Your Plate

The capital city of Madhya Pradesh, India, Bhopal city has much to offer in terms of tourism. The city of lakes, as it is fondly called, has a very rich and vibrant history, and culture along with a strong culinary vibe for foodies keen to explore. A fantastic fusion of Muslim and Hindu culture, the food here can satisfy many cravings. The range is huge – from Indori poha-jalebito Irani chai, Kanpuriya kachori to chaat, Bikaneri sev to idli-dosa, Punjabi chole bhature to pizzas and pasta. There are all sorts of eateries too, from high-end, 5 star restaurants to the narrow, crowded lanes of the Chatori Gali. With the wide variety of experiences it offers, the food from this city in the heart of India, will fill not only your stomach, but your heart too. Read on for a curated list of famous places to eat at in Bhopal, along with insights into the most popular food in Madhya Pradesh.

A culinary journey in Bhopal should start with the almost sacred Poha-Jalebi. In the morning hours, head to the famous Jama Masjid, just off Itwara Road, to the famous Kalyan Singh’s Swad Bhandar. It serves Bhopali Poha – fresh, light, hot poha that is both spicy and sweet, garnished generously with sev adding a crunch. Couple this with hot jalebis for a perfect breakfast, which is available across the city. It is only in Bhopal and Indore, that the deliciously soft poha is topped with sev and crispy jalebis. To settle the matter further, enjoy a cup of authentic Bhopali Sulemani chai at Jamal Bhai’s chai ki dukaan – the tea is unique blend of sweet and salty and comes loaded with a generous helping of cream.

For a fuller meal at lunch (or dinner) Hakeem’s, Bapu ki kutiya, Tapti and Rajhans are places one could head to. Mecca for the non vegetarians, Hakeem hotel serves delicious non vegetarian delicacies throughout its multiple outlets in Bhopal. The aromatic gravies, the tikkas and kababs here are among the best in the city. Order anything on the menu and be assured of delight in every bite. The staff is very friendly, service is fast and the food served is hot and tasty. Head to either T.T Nagar or M.P Nagar for a hearty meal at Hakeem. If you’re looking for a more upmarket, ambience-laden experience Jehan Numah Palace or Noor us Sabah are popular restaurants for authentic Mughal, Italian and continental dishes.