Pushkar is any vegetarian and budget traveler’s food paradise.
The majority of the travelers visiting this town are foreigners and they live here for long periods of time. But the entire town is a temple town, hence any form of meat and alcohol is strictly prohibited. This has resulted in all kinds of cuisine being available here in their pure vegetarian avatars. This town is really small and for all practical purposes just one long winding road, but the number of eating options in terms of places and variety is just mind-boggling. And all this is available at dirt cheap prices.
So it’s no wonder that when a foodie like me landed in this town what happened – well I literally ate my way through the streets. My friends, Sonal and Partha had been to Pushkar a couple of months before us and they had spent about 10 days exploring this place and its hidden food gems. We tried their recommendations and found some of our own too. We were literally eating every 30 minutes here.
Since I loved the food here so much, I am now listing the same below for everyone who is visiting this amazing town to try out and enjoy. Since I was busy eating and now reminiscing while writing, the descriptions are quite short. Hence take this as a teaser and visit Pushkar for your own experience.
- Pohas – Every morning all along the roads people come with carts and set up street side poha stalls. Poha is a kind of flat rice which is cooked with vegetable likes potato and peas and served with a garnish of fresh tomatoes, coriander etc. This simple dish served in a newspaper for just Rs 5 is the most amazing poha that I have ever eaten anywhere in India or at home. This is a must try for at least one day breakfast.
- Sonu Juice Centre – In the centre of the main street of Pushkar, you have a really small stall called the Sonu Juice Centre. Here for just Rs 40 – 60 you can try the most awesome fresh fruit juices in some pretty unusual combinations. From my own experience I tried a pineapple pomegranate and lemon and also a melon mint lemon and loved both of them. They also have some combinations like kiwi banana, chickoo pineapple banana etc. All the juices are made right in front of you, are chilled and super fresh and refreshing. A must during every break from the shopping and temple visiting in this town.
- Ganga Restaurant – Just opposite the Sonu juice centre, there is again a very small stall called the Ganga restaurant. This place is famous for its falafels and pancakes. Since I am a pure vegetarian (no eggs either) I find very few places where I get falafels or pancakes and this place turned out to be one of my all time favourites. As you can see from the pic below they have a staggering variety of falafels (there is an additional printed menu too) and each falafel is a must try. Also each falafel is quite heavy and turns out to be an entire meal. Apart of the falafels, I also tried the banana nutella pancake and that too is highly recommended
- Tibetan Garden Restaurant – Just before the Sonu juice centre, there is a small gateway which is the entrance to the Tibet Garden restaurant. Now this is a complete hidden gem as you just cant imagine how quaint this place is from the entrance. Once you enter the gate you turn right and this restaurant is on your left. This place has one old tree in a corner and its branches and leaves make the ceiling of this restaurant. This place has amazing Tibetan food and again at dirt cheap prices. We had a thukpa and a thenthuk here, which are again a must eat for at least one meal.
- Shivam Garden Restaurant – Towards one end of the main road in Pushkar, there is a small hidden restaurant called Shivam Garden Restaurant which has the most awesome wood fired pizzas. I tried their pesto paneer pizza and it was a must try for everyone who loves pizzas.
- Sai Baba Haveli restaurant – Just opposite the Shivam Garden Restaurant is a place called Sai Baba Haveli Guest House Restaurant. This place has really tasty aloo (potato) paranthas. If you like your paranthas in a certain manner then don’t hesitate to provide the specifications and the paranthas will arrive just as you like them. Another must try for everyone.
- Sarvadia Sweet House – In the middle of the main street in Pushkar, there is a sweet house called the Sarvadia Sweet house which makes a signature dessert called the rabdi malpua. Now don’t go by the looks of this place, it may look really down trodden but their radbi malpua (fried condensed milk) is the just mind-blowing. You only get this desert here in Pushkar and it’s a must must eat for everyone who has a sweet tooth like mine. In fact I packed them and brought them home for friends and family members; and they all loved this too.
- If you are too full from eating all the above mentioned food, then there is a small hand cart vendor near the Brahma temple who sells churan (spice mixtures for digestion). His entire cart is full of all kinds tasty churan combinations and again you can take your pick.
- Coffee – All over Pushkar you find the most authentic european coffee. So if you are a coffee fan then don’t forget to try some out here.
While I tried to eat everything possible in Pushkar – I missed a few things like Israeli food, trying out some local cafes and trying the local french cuisine. But doesn’t matter as it’s all in the pending list for my next visit.
I hope everyone finds this post useful for their own trip to Pushkar, however if I have missed anything out then please comment below or tweet at traveler_budget.