Do you know what the most popular thing to do in the city, Varanasi is?
Yes, you get it right, Varanasi street food tour.
Varanasi is an ancient city that is believed to be established by Lord Shiva. It is one of the most visited destinations in India.
Apart from its pleasing ghats and temple, this spiritual capital of India is well-known for its street food.
Varanasi’s Street food is an amalgamation of countless delicacies and flavours.
Everything from the local specialities offered by this city to the varieties of Indian dishes adapted to the city’s taste, the food you’ll find on the streets of Varanasi is out of the world.
From snacks to the main course to dessert, the streets of Varanasi are filled with numerous roadside shops and stalls serving finger-licking street food right in front of you.
Top 10 Street Food in Varanasi
Here is a list of Top 10 street food for you to must-try while in Varanasi.
These are some of the best kinds of Varanasi street food that you cannot afford to miss.
Kachori-Sabji is one of the most popular breakfast options in Varanasi.
There are two types of Kachoris you’ll find here that are Badi Kachori and Choti Kachori. Badi Kachoris are stuffed with ‘Dali ki Pitti,’ the masala made of lentils, whereas Choti Kachoris are stuffed with a mixture of mashed masala aloo.
Both of these types are served with hot and spicy ‘Aloo ki Sabji.’ Generous amounts of Cloves and Black pepper are added to the curry, which provides it with a delicious aroma.
This street food would be the perfect way to begin your joyful day in Varanasi.
Origin: It originated in Mathura-Vrindavan, Uttar Pradesh, in the Bhojpuri region.
Best Time to Eat: At Breakfast and Tea-Time
Price Range: Rs.40-80 approx.
Where you can get it: Ram Bhandar (Chowk), Madhur Milan (Dashaswamedh Ghat)
2. Laaiya Channa
Laiyya Channa is a simple go-to snack item that you commonly find on the streets of Varanasi, mostly during evening hours.
It is somewhat similar to Jhal Muri and Bhelpuri. Soaked, boiled Channa replaces puffed rice in the recipe. Otherwise, the method of preparing it remains the same.
The finely chopped onion, tomato, green chillies, roasted peanuts with various spices, including Chaat Masala, are added to the boiled Channa.
After that, lemon is squeezed over the mixture to give it a finishing touch, and the yummy tangy snack is then ready to serve you. Laaiya Channa paired best with a cup of tea.
Origin: The origin of this dish is not mentioned anywhere.
Best Time to Eat: At Evening
Price Range: Rs.20-40 approx. (per plate)
Where you can get it: Deena Chat Bhandaar (Ramapura)
3. Channa Dahi Vada
Channa Dahi Vada is one of the refreshing snacks which you can enjoy while exploring this beautiful place. It is a delicious variation of Dahi Bhalla.
Vada refers to a soft fritter that is served with sweet yogurt. It is garnished with some coriander leaves and a masala made up of jeera and black salt that adds relishing flavor to the dish.
This street snack is a perfect mixture of spice, sweetness, and crunch. Channa Dahi vada is one of the most iconic street foods that you’ll find in Varanasi.
If you are a curd lover, then this dish is perfect for you. It is a must-try street food option here.
Origin: It originated in Karnataka in the 12th century.
Best Time to Eat: At Breakfast
Price Range: Rs. 30-60 approx. (per plate)
Where you can get it: Deena Chat Bhandar (Ramapura), Many stalls at Dashashwamedha ghat
Thandai is flavoured milk with multiple spices in it. Different variants of Thandai, depending upon the seasonal fruits, are offered on the streets of Varanasi.
Kesaria Thandai is the most popular among so many versions of it.
It is well known for its unique and relishing taste. Thandai of Varanasi has gained name across the whole country. This cold beverage is served in a Kulhad, garnished with Rabri, ice cream, dry fruits, and nuts.
Condiments like fennel seeds, pepper, vetiver seeds, cardamom, and saffron make the flavours truly rich and refreshing.
If you are tired after walking on the ghats of Varanasi, a glass of Thandai is enough to make you energetic again.
Origin: It is one of the oldest drinks in the country. It is believed to have originated in the mythological era in Uttar Pradesh.
Best Time to Eat: Any-time
Price Range: Rs.20-40 approx.
Where you can get it: Baba Thandai (Godowlia), Blue Lassi Shop (Kachori Gali Chowk), Mishrambu Thandai (Dashaswamedh Ghat)
5. Chooda Matar
Chooda Matar is Matar Poha, served on the streets of Varanasi with its local twist in it. Chooda is flattened rice stir-fried in desi ghee with fresh green peas and a variety of ground condiments.
Cream, milk, raisins, and saffron are added to enhance the flavour and texture of the dish. This combination of sweet green peas, hot garam masala, and aromatic ghee in this dish tastes super amazing.
Chooda Matar is one of the healthiest snacks, perfect for health-conscious people. This street snack is commonly available on the street side stalls during winters.
You can enjoy this luscious dish with a cup of hot masala chai.
Origin: It originated in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh itself.
Best Time to Eat: At Breakfast and Evening
Price Range: Rs.20-30 approx. (per plate)
Where you can get it: Kashi Chat Bhandar (Godowlia), Gopal Mandir Gali
6. Baati Chokha
Baati Chokha is one of the most popular foods of Bihar, but this delicacy from Bihar is loved and enjoyed by the vast population in Varanasi too.
Baati is a small wheat ball stuffed with roasted chana dal and sattu.
Batti is cooked over charcoal and then dipped in ghee, which enhances its aroma and texture to a great extent.
It is served with Chokha, a spicy mix of mashed potatoes, tomatoes, baked brinjal, and many spices.
Litti Chokha is a traditional fulfilling meal that is simple yet full of taste and flavors. Baati Chokha stalls are everywhere on the streets of Varanasi.
Origin: This complete meal originated in the Indian state of Bihar as a staple food. This dish has gained popularity globally.
Best Time to Eat: At Lunch or Dinner
Price Range: Rs.100-150 approx. (per plate)
Where you can get it: Baati Chokha (Teliyabagh), multiple shops at Puran Das Road
Malaiyoo is a popular street dessert in Varanasi, which the people enjoy during the winter season, from November to February. It is a unique dessert.
You can explore this scrumptious dessert item on the narrow lanes of this eternal city only. Malaiyoo is flavoured milk. The garnishing of pistachios, cardamom, saffron, almonds provides the milk with mouth-melting flavours.
This dessert is so light and foamy in texture that it melts in your mouth when you eat it. Malaiyoo is served in the eastern cups referred to as ‘Khullads.’
If you have a sweet tooth, do not forget to try this dessert while visiting this place. It is genuinely a fantastic sweet offering from Varanasi.
Origin: It is a local dessert that has its origin in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh
Best Time to Eat: After Dinner
Price Range: Rs.30-60 approx. (per Khullad)
Where you can get it: Markandey Sardar (Chaukhamba Gali), Godowlia Chowk
8. Tamatar Chaat
Varanasi has its style of serving Aloo Chaat, which is prepared using tomatoes and is called Tamatar Chaat. It is one of the local delicacies of Varanasi.
It is a spicy chaat made up of tomatoes, ginger, green chilli, coriander leaves, and varieties of spices such as Hing, garam masala, red chilli powder, and black pepper with the addition of boiled potatoes.
A pinch of chaat masala over it, and it is ready to enjoy. This spicy street snack is served in a bowl of dry Palash leaves.
If you love spicy food, then this lip-smacking chaat is perfect to activate your taste buds. Tamatar Chaat is one of the tastiest specialities of Varanasi that you should try.
Origin: This lip-smacking recipe of Tamatar Chaat originated in the holy city of Varanasi.
Best Time to Eat: At Evening
Price Range: Rs.20-50 approx.
Where you can get it: Kashi Chat Bhandar (Godowlia), Deena Chat Bhandar (Dashashwamedha ghat)
9. Dahi Chutney Wale Gol Gappe
It is popularly known as Meethe Gol Gappe in Varanasi. This GolGappa Chaat offers you both sweet and spicy flavours that are loved by both children and adults. Its preparation is similar to Papdi Chaat.
The only difference between the two is that this recipe includes thin and crispy puris instead of Papdi.
The crispy Golgappa are filled with a spicy mash of boiled potatoes and is then topped with tangy chutneys, curd flavoured with Imli, Pudina, and other spices along with sev.
A sprinkle of few pomegranate seeds adds a final touch to the chaat. You can find this finger-licking chaat in almost every chaat shop in Varanasi.
It is paired best with a chilled glass of Jaljeera.
Origin: It originated in the Maharashtra region of the Indian subcontinent.
Best Time to Eat: At Evening
Price Range: Rs.30-50 approx. (per plate)
Where you can get it: Deena Chat Bhandar (Gol Ganj)
Rabri-Jalebi is another sweet dish you’ll find on the streets of Varanasi. Jalebi is made up of deep-fried maida flour, which is then dipped in sugar syrup and served with chilled thickened condensed milk, Rabri.
This place provides you with the best-ever tasting Rabri-Jalebis. This combination of Rabri and Jalebi is incomparable.
If you crave some delicious sweet items in Varanasi, then without any confusion, Rabri-Jalebi is perfect for satisfying your craving.
Rabri-Jalebi can make you happy anytime and every time. Every calorie you gain after having this lip-smacking sweet is worth it in front of its sumptuous flavour and taste.
Origin: It originated in India, but the state is lost in the history pages.
Best Time to Eat: After Lunch or Dinner
Price Range: Rs.40-80 approx.
Where you can get it: Shri Madhur Jalpan (Varanasi)