The Most Popular Indian Street Food: A Delicious Guide

Choose the food you think is the most popular!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Feb 25, 2024 06:13
Embark on a tantalizing journey through the vibrant and bustling streets of India with StrawPoll's exclusive ranking of the most popular Indian street food! Satisfy your taste buds by voting for your all-time favorite street delicacy or suggesting a missing gem from the vast ocean of flavors that India has to offer. Be it the spicy tang of Pani Puri, the irresistible crunch of Samosas, or the soothing warmth of a steaming bowl of Pav Bhaji - every bite tells a tale that's rich in culture and tradition. Unravel the culinary secrets of India's bustling food scene and join thousands of food enthusiasts in celebrating the most delectable and mouth-watering street foods. So, are you ready to take the ultimate food challenge and crown the king of Indian street food? Cast your vote now and let the delicious battle begin!

What Is the Most Popular Indian Street Food?

  1. 1
    68
    votes
    Samosas is deep-fried pastry filled with spiced potatoes, peas, and sometimes meat, served with chutney. They are a popular snack and a staple of Indian street food.
    Samosas are a popular and delicious Indian dish that originated in the Indian subcontinent. They are deep-fried pastries with a crispy outer crust and a savory filling. The filling typically consists of a mixture of spiced potatoes, peas, onions, and sometimes lentils or minced meat. Samosas are often triangular or cone-shaped and are enjoyed as a snack or appetizer.
    • Filling: Spiced potatoes, peas, onions
    • Optional ingredients: Lentils or minced meat
    • Shape: Triangular or cone-shaped
    • Crust: Crispy and deep-fried
    • Usage: Snack or appetizer
  2. 2
    28
    votes
    Chaat is a savory snack made with crispy fried dough, potatoes, chickpeas, and chutney. There are many different varieties of chaat, each with its own unique flavors and ingredients.
    Chaat is a popular Indian street food that is known for its savory and tangy flavors. It is a combination of different ingredients such as crispy fried dough wafers, boiled potatoes, chickpeas, onions, and a variety of chutneys and spices. The mixture is then garnished with fresh coriander leaves and a sprinkle of chaat masala. Chaat offers a unique blend of textures and flavors, ranging from sweet and sour to spicy and tangy.
    • Origin: India
    • Texture: Crispy and soft
    • Primary ingredients: Fried dough wafers, boiled potatoes, chickpeas
    • Additional ingredients: Onions, chutneys, spices
    • Garnish: Coriander leaves, chaat masala
  3. 3
    27
    votes
    Vada pav
    Kaushiki Prabhudesai · CC BY-SA 4.0

    Vada pav

    Ashok Vaidya
    Vada pav is a street food from Mumbai, consisting of a fried potato dumpling served in a bread bun with chutney. It is often called the Indian version of a burger.
    Vada pav is a popular street food in Mumbai, India, consisting of a spicy potato fritter (vada) served inside a soft bun (pav). It is often accompanied by chutney and served hot.
    • Origin: Mumbai, India
    • Type: Street food
    • Main Ingredients: Potato, bread, spices
    • Spiciness: Medium to high
    • Texture: Soft, crispy, and crunchy
    Vada pav in other rankings
  4. 4
    23
    votes
    Pav bhaji is a spicy vegetable curry served with buttered bread rolls. It is a popular street food in Mumbai and is often eaten as a filling meal.
    Pav bhaji is a popular Indian street food dish that originated in the state of Maharashtra. It is a delightful and flavorful mix of spiced mashed vegetables served with buttered pav buns. The dish is usually made with a combination of potatoes, peas, tomatoes, onions, and a variety of spices. It is cooked on a griddle with butter and special pav bhaji masala, creating a rich and aromatic gravy. The bhaji is generally served hot with a generous amount of butter, accompanied by butter-toasted pav buns. It is often garnished with fresh coriander leaves, chopped onions, and a squeeze of lime juice to enhance the taste and provide a tangy kick.
    • Main Ingredients: Potatoes, peas, tomatoes, onions
    • Spices: Pav bhaji masala, red chili powder, turmeric powder, cumin powder
    • Serving Style: Hot
    • Accompaniments: Pav buns, butter, coriander leaves, chopped onions, lime juice
    • Origin: Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
    Pav bhaji in other rankings
  5. 5
    13
    votes
    Dosa is a thin, crispy pancake made from fermented rice and lentil batter, served with chutney and sambar. It is a popular breakfast item in South India and is also enjoyed as a street food.
    Dosa is a popular South Indian dish that is enjoyed throughout India and parts of the world. It is a thin, crepe-like pancake made from a fermented batter of rice and lentils. The batter is spread out on a hot griddle or tawa, cooked until golden and crisp, and usually served with chutney and sambar (a vegetable lentil stew). Dosa is known for its unique texture - soft in the middle and crispy on the edges. It can be enjoyed as a breakfast item, snack, or even a main course.
    • Ingredients: Rice, lentils, salt, water
    • Fermentation: The batter is left to ferment overnight before cooking, which enhances the taste and improves digestion.
    • Varieties: There are numerous variations of dosa, including masala dosa (filled with a savory potato filling), rava dosa (made with semolina), and mysore dosa (spiced with chutney and red chili paste).
    • Size and Shape: Dosas come in different sizes, ranging from small (as small as a palm) to large (over a foot in diameter). They are usually round or oval in shape.
    • Accompaniments: Dosas are typically served with coconut chutney, sambar (spicy lentil stew), and sometimes with a spicy tomato-onion chutney.
  6. 6
    5
    votes
    Bhel puri is a popular street food snack made from puffed rice, vegetables, and chutney. It is a light and refreshing snack that is perfect for hot weather.
  7. 7
    6
    votes
    Aloo tikki is a crispy potato patty filled with spices and served with chutney. It is a popular street food in North India and is often eaten as a snack or appetizer.
    Aloo tikki is a popular Indian street food that consists of deep-fried potato patties infused with various spices and served with chutneys. It is known for its crispy exterior and soft, spicy filling. Aloo tikki is commonly enjoyed as a snack or as a part of a larger meal.
    • Ingredients: Potatoes, spices (such as cumin, coriander, and red chili powder), breadcrumbs
    • Preparation: Boiled and mashed potatoes are mixed with spices, shaped into patties, coated with breadcrumbs and deep-fried
    • Texture: Crispy exterior with a soft and flavorful filling
    • Flavors: Spicy, savory, and aromatic
    • Serving Style: Generally served hot, topped with chutneys (such as tamarind and mint) and yogurt
  8. 8
    8
    votes
    Kati roll is a street food from Kolkata, consisting of a paratha stuffed with spiced meat or vegetables. It is a popular grab-and-go snack that is perfect for people on the move.
    The Kati roll is a widely popular Indian street food that originated in Kolkata, West Bengal. It is a type of street wrap or roll made with a paratha, a flaky and crispy flatbread, that is stuffed with a filling of various ingredients.
    • Primary ingredients: Paratha, choice of filling (vegetables, meat, or paneer), onions, sauces, and spices
    • Preparation style: The paratha is cooked with oil or ghee on a griddle and then stuffed with the filling and seasoned with sauces, spices, and onions.
    • Common fillings: Chicken, mutton, paneer (cottage cheese), egg, and vegetarian options like mixed vegetables
    • Sauces and chutneys: Commonly used sauces and chutneys include mint chutney, tamarind chutney, yogurt-based sauces, and spicy chili sauce.
    • Flavor profile: Spicy, tangy, and flavorful
  9. 9
    2
    votes
    Chole bhature
    MaharajaMandy · CC BY-SA 4.0
    Chole bhature is a spicy chickpea curry served with deep-fried bread. It is a popular street food in North India and is often eaten as a filling meal.
    Chole bhature is a popular North Indian dish that consists of spicy chickpeas (chole) cooked in a tangy tomato-based sauce, served with deep-fried bread (bhature). It is a mouthwatering combination of flavors and textures.
    • Region: North India
    • Main Ingredients: Chickpeas, tomatoes, spices, flour
    • Spiciness: Can range from mild to spicy, depending on preference
    • Serving Style: Hot and fresh
    • Accompaniments: Pickles, raita (yogurt sauce), onions
    Chole bhature in other rankings
  10. 10
    7
    votes
    Pani puri
    Teena Sometimes · CC BY-SA 4.0
    Pani puri is a popular street food snack consisting of a hollow, crispy shell filled with spiced water, chickpeas, and potatoes. It is a refreshing snack that is perfect for hot weather.
    Pani puri is a popular Indian street food delicacy that consists of small crispy hollow puris (deep-fried shells) filled with a spicy and tangy mixture of mashed potatoes, chickpeas, onions, and a variety of chutneys. It is typically served with a flavorful spiced water called 'pani' that adds a refreshing element to the dish.
    • Origin: India
    • Other Names: Gol Gappa, Puchka, Pani Patashi
    • Region: Popular across India
    • Availability: Widely available as street food
    • Preparation: Deep-fried puris filled with potato mixture and topped with chutneys

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Discussion

Ranking factors for popular food

  1. Taste and Flavor
    A crucial factor in ranking popular Indian street food is the taste and flavor. Indian street food is known for its rich, diverse, and unique flavors, which often include a mix of spices, herbs, and other ingredients.
  2. Regional Popularity
    India is geographically diverse, and the popularity of street food can vary from one region to another. Some dishes may be widely popular in one part of the country and barely known in another.
  3. Cultural Significance
    Some street food items have cultural significance or are associated with religious or festive occasions, which can impact their popularity.
  4. Accessibility and Affordability
    Popular street food should be easily accessible to a wide range of people, both in terms of location and price. Affordability is an important factor, as street food is often considered a budget-friendly alternative to restaurant dining.
  5. Versatility and Customization
    The ability to customize a dish according to individual preferences can affect its popularity. Street food vendors often offer a variety of options, ranging from the level of spiciness to the inclusion or exclusion of specific ingredients.
  6. Presentation and Aesthetics
    A visually appealing and well-presented dish can draw attention and increase its popularity among consumers.
  7. Nutritional Value
    While not the primary factor for ranking popular Indian street food, some people may consider the nutritional value of the dishes. Health-conscious consumers might look for options that are lower in fat and calories or offer specific health benefits.
  8. Adaptability to Local Tastes
    Popular street food should have the ability to adapt to local tastes and preferences while still maintaining its authentic Indian flavors. This adaptability ensures that it appeals to a wider audience.
  9. Reputation and Tradition
    Street food vendors who have a good reputation and are known for maintaining high-quality standards and traditional cooking methods usually attract a larger customer base.
  10. Social Media and Word of Mouth
    The popularity of Indian street food can also be influenced by social media platforms and word of mouth, as people often share and recommend their favorite dishes to friends and followers. The more positive reviews and recommendations, the higher the popularity of a particular street food item.

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most popular Indian street food. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or food is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!

Statistics

  • 1172 views
  • 187 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Movers & Shakers

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each food once every 24 hours. The rank of each food is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

More information on most popular indian street food

India is home to a diverse and vibrant street food culture, with each region offering its own unique flavors and specialties. From Mumbai's iconic vada pav and pav bhaji to Kolkata's mouth-watering puchkas and jhal muri, Indian street food is a delicious and affordable way to experience the country's culinary traditions. No matter where you go in India, you're sure to find a street vendor selling something delicious and satisfying. So, what is the most popular Indian street food? Let's take a closer look at some of the top contenders.

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