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Famous Food in Ladakh

Famous Food in Ladakh

7 June 2024

Top 9 Must-Try Dishes in Ladakh on Your Next Visit

The beautiful landscape of Ladakh has a lot to offer. If you are an avid traveler, you will love the entire ambiance of the region with several adventures to discover. The rich history and culture of this stunning place will leave you amazed. 

 

You can feel the cultural richness of Ladakh in its people and in its food. The challenging terrain of Ladakh makes its food scene quite unique. It’s deeply influenced by Tibetan, Nepalese, Indian, and Central Asian cuisine. Once you are here, the famous food of Ladakh is sure to take you on a trip through the area's history and heritage. 

 

From hearty meals to delicious sweets, you can find here what’s favorite to every palate. Here’s a guide to the must-try dishes in Ladakh that you shouldn’t miss during your visit.

 



CONTENTS:

Here is the list of popular food you must try in Ladakh.

1. Vegetarian Food in Ladakh

1.1 Khambir

1.2 Skyu

1.3 Chutagi

2. Non-Vegetarian Food in Ladakh

2.1 Momos

2.2  Yarkhandi Pulao

2.3 Thukpa

3. Dessert or Sweet Food in Ladakh

3.1 Phirni

3.2 Butter Tea

3.3 Apricot Jam

Looking for a Delightful Trip to Ladakh?



1. Vegetarian Food in Ladakh

 

1.1 Khambir

 

Khambir is a traditional Ladakhi bread that's a must-try when you're in the region. Also known as 'tagi,' this delicious, round, and slightly thick bread is usually enjoyed fresh and warm. 

 

It is made by adding a leavening agent to wheat dough. The fermented dough is then shaped into round bread, baked on a hot stone, and then directly on a fire. It's perfect for dipping in tea or eating with butter, jam, or local Ladakhi dishes like stew or curries.

 

1.2 Skyu

 

Skyu is another popular traditional Ladakhi dish. This is made from handmade pasta and vegetables. The pasta is made from wheat dough kneaded into thumb-sized shapes, which are then cooked with root vegetables and spices. 

 

It’s a hearty and warming dish perfect for the cold and harsh climate of Ladakh. Try it after a day full of adventure. A bowl full of Skyu will satisfy your hunger like no other.

 

1.3 Chutagi

 

Chutagi is a popular vegetarian food in Ladakh. The name literally means 'water bread.' This dish is made from bow-shaped wheat pasta cooked with potatoes, carrots, spinach, and turnips in a thick soup. This is a signature Ladakhi dish you can find in most restaurants here. It’s a filling and nutritious meal that will keep you energized for your Ladakh adventures.



2. Non-Vegetarian Food in Ladakh

 

2.1 Momos

 

Momos are one of the most famous street foods in Ladakh. These steamed dumplings are filled with minced meat, usually mutton or chicken, mixed with spices and vegetables. 

 

You can find these delicious treats at many street stalls in Leh. These are also available in different varieties in popular restaurants in Ladakh. Served with a spicy chili sauce, momos are a must-try popular food in Ladakh.

 

2.2  Yarkhandi Pulao

 

Yarkhandi Pulao is a traditional dish that originated from Yarkhand (now in Xinjiang, China) and was brought to Ladakh by traders. A plate of this dish takes you through the history of Ladakh, depicting the stories of how it traveled from Yarkhand through the Silk Route. 

 

It’s a flavorful rice dish cooked with chunks of meat, primarily mutton, and a variety of local spices. It’s the only traditional dish of Ladakh that uses a few whole spices like ‘Shah Zeera,’ which adds a unique flavor and aroma to this already flavorful delicacy. It’s a hearty meal you must try when visiting Ladakh.

 

2.3 Thukpa

 

Thukpa is a traditional Tibetan noodle soup that has become a staple in Ladakh over time. It can be both vegetarian and non-vegetarian, but the non-vegetarian thukpa has its own charm. Made with fresh meat, noodles, and a flavorful broth, it’s perfect for the chilly weather of Ladakh. 

 

You can find this comforting dish in almost every local eatery. Enjoy it freshly prepared with local spices while taking in the beautiful landscape of the place. This is a healthy and hearty food you must try after a day of adventure in Ladakh.



3. Dessert or Sweet Food in Ladakh

 

3.1 Phirni

 

Phirni is a creamy rice pudding and a popular sweet food in Ladakh. It is prepared using ground rice, milk, and sugar, and flavored with cardamom and saffron. It is often served in earthen pots and topped with chopped nuts. 

 

The slow cooking process gives it a very creamy texture that’s appealing to both the eyes and the mouth. It’s a delicious dessert that’s commonly enjoyed during festivals and special celebrations. If you like sweets, it’s a must-try dish in Ladakh.

 

3.2 Butter Tea

 

Butter Tea, also known as Gur-Gur Chai, is a traditional Tibetan drink popular in Ladakh. It is prepared by boiling tea leaves and then adding yak butter and salt for a unique taste. 

 

This butter tea is highly caloric and is a good beverage for the high altitude and cold weather of Ladakh. After your day with memorable things to do in Ladakh, try this warming and energizing drink to make a perfect end to your adventure.

 

3.3 Apricot Jam

 

Ladakh is known for its apricots, locally known as ‘chulli’. You can find many beautiful apricot orchards in the region, especially in low-altitude areas like Nubra Valley and Sham. 

 

Many products are made from this juicy fruit, and one such delicacy is Apricot Jam. The jam is sweet, tangy, and packed with flavor. It’s a perfect spread for bread or can be enjoyed on its own for a heartwarming breakfast.

 

ALSO READ: Offbeat places to visit in Ladakh



Looking for a Delightful Trip to Ladakh?

 

Ladakh’s food scene is as diverse and fascinating as its beautiful yet challenging landscape. Whether you’re a vegetarian, a meat lover, or have a sweet tooth, Ladakh has something special to offer you. The famous food of Ladakh aligns beautifully with its unique climate and cold weather. 

 

After a day of sightseeing and adventure in the region, a warm bowl of a local dish will be waiting for you in any restaurant or local stall, leaving you feeling refreshed and energetic. You won't be disappointed while dining out here, whether you try the popular street food like momos and butter tea or fulfilling delicacies like chutagi and thukpa. These must-try dishes in Ladakh will not only satisfy your taste buds but also give you a deeper insight into the rich culture and traditions of this beautiful region.


Planning to make a trip to Ladakh? Book your Ladakh Tour Package today and get ready to for an unforgettable journey amid the less explored beauty of nature.

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