Royal Rajasthani Thali served at Rambagh Palace, Jaipur

Rajasthani cuisine is the cuisine of the Rajasthan state in North West India. It was influenced by various factors like the warlike lifestyles of its inhabitants, the availability of ingredients in an arid region and by Hindu temple traditions of sampradayas like Pushtimarg and Ramanandi.[1][2] Food that could last for several days and could be eaten without heating was preferred. Scarcity of water and fresh green vegetables have all had their effect on the cooking. Signature Rajasthani dishes include Dal Baati Churma, Panchratna Dal, Papad ro Saag, Ker Sangri,[3] Gatte ro Saag. It is also known for its snacks like Bikaneri bhujia, Mirchi bada and Kanda kachauri. Other famous dishes include Dal Baati, malaidar special lassi (lassi) and Lashun ki chutney (hot garlic paste), Mawa lassi from Jodhpur, Alwar ka mawa, Malpauas from Pushkar and rasgulla from Bikaner, "paniya"and "gheriya" from Mewar.[2] Originating for the Marwar region of the state is the concept Marwari Bhojnalaya, or vegetarian restaurants, today found in many parts of India, which offer vegetarian food of the Marwari people. The history also has its effect on the diet as the Rajputs preferred majorly a non-vegetarian diet while the Brahmins, Jains, Bishnois and others preferred a vegetarian diet. So, the state has a myriad of both types of delicacies.[4]

According to a 2014 survey released by the registrar general of India, Rajasthan has 74.9% vegetarians, which makes it the most vegetarian state in India.[5]

Rajwaadi culinary tradition

Rajasthan is known for its Royal Rajwaadi cuisine (also known as Raajsi cuisine) which emanated from the culinary traditions of Royal courts and temples.[6]

The Rajwaadi cuisine is characterized by high usage of dry fruits & milk products like Yogurt for preparing rich gravies, ghee & butter for cooking & frying, mawa & chhena for sweets, usage of Kesar, kewda water & rose water and whole spices like jayaphal, javitri, cardamom etc. for flavoring and aroma.[7]

Often Rajwaadi food items are decorated with thin foils of gold & silver and also served in golden or silver crockery.

Rajput cuisine

Rajasthani cuisine is also influenced by the Rajputs, who traditionally consume sacrificial meat only. Their diet consisted of game meat which is procured only via Jhatka method. Some of the non vegetarian lamb dishes like Ratto Maans (meat in red gravy), Dhaulo Maans (meat in white gravy) and Jungli maans (game meat cooked with basic ingredients).[8][9][10] Another popular non vegetarian dish from Rajasthan is Maans ra Soola, which is a kind of spitted or skewered meat.[11] Another dish is Sohita or Soyeta, delectably made from chicken, millets, ginger and chilli.[12]

Apart from lamb, chicken and freshwater fish are also cooked; for example Bhuna Kukada and Macchli Jaisamandi.[13] Another royal non vegetarian recipe is Khadd Khargosh or Khadd Susalyo is a curried rabbit dish, based on a traditional Indian hunter dish common in the days of the Rajput kings, where the rabbits would be wrapped in leaves and baked in a freshly dug pit which acted as an oven.[14] Mokal is another non vegetarian dish which is prepared from rabbit meat cooked with lemon, almond and nutmeg.

Rajasthani barbecue techniques

Rajasthani cooking employs use of Barbecue, grilling and baking techniques for preparing an array of foods. Various cooking equipments are used in Rajasthani culinary tradition for this purpose. Every household has its own grill locally known by the name Sigdi (Sanskrit: शकटी, Śakṭī) or Angithi (Sanskrit: अग्निस्थिका, Agnisthikā). Clay ovens called bhatthi or tandoor are also very common.[15] In fact, these clay ovens i.e. Bhatthi (Sanskrit: भ्राष्ट्र Bhrāshtra) or tandoor originated in Rajasthan. Indus Valley site : Kalibangan in Rajasthan has the earliest archaeological evidence of using clay ovens resembling present day tandoors.[16] These Sigdis/Angithis/Bhatthis or tandoors would then be used for baking breads like Baati, Angakadi, Baphla, Angarki roti, Kinwani roti (fermented flour roti). Often Soolas of maans (meat), macchli (fish) & chhena (cottage cheese) were barbecued using skewers in these clay oven. Khadd ka Pind is yet another barbecue technique employed by Rajasthan royal princes while their hunting expeditions.[14]


Since Rajasthan is mostly an arid state, wheat and millets form the staple diet instead of rice (which are common in rest of India).

Various breads are prepared from wheat like tawa roti, Angarki/Tandoori roti, Kinwani roti (naturally fermented flour roti) etc. Khoba Roti is a special roti from Rajasthan which is prepared by pinching the dough to make a beautiful pattern of indentations on roti.[17] It is very common to prepare large sized rotis called Rotlas/Bhakri using flour of millets like Bajra (Pearl millet), Makai (Maize), Jowar etc.

Gram flour is usually mixed with wheat flour to prepare missi atta which is then used to prepare Missi Roti. Sometimes, multigrain flatbread called Bejad Roti is prepared by mixing wheat flour with jowar flour and besan.[18] Tikkad is another typical Rajasthani bread which is prepared by blend of flours and vegetables.[19] Kanda Tamatar Tikkad and Bajra Mooli Tikkad are some common variations of Tikkad.[20]

Deep fried breads include: puris & kachauris (stuffed with dal pithi, vegetables, mawa etc.). Kanda Kachauri, prepared using stuffing of onion based mixture is a speciality of Rajasthani cuisine. Mawa Kachauri is sweet version of Kachauri stuffed with mawa. Jhakolma Puri is a speciality of Mewari cuisine which is a large sized puri prepared using wheat dough of flowing consistency.[21] It is served with Chana Dal and Amchur chutney.

Pan cooked breads like parathas (mostly stuffed with vegetables, dals or chhena), cheelas, pudlas, tikkads, malpuas etc. One unique paratha of Rajasthan is Korma Paratha or Dal Churi Paratha which is prepared using korma or dal churi (semi crushed coarse lentils and its husk).[22] Some common varaitions of Cheelas include Besan Cheela and Mogar Cheela. using Baked breads include Baatis,[23] Angarki roti/Tandoori roti, Angarki paratha, Kinwani roti etc.

Desserts and sweet dishes

Rajasthani culinary tradition is known for array of sweet dishes and desserts emanating from Naivedhya tradition of Hindu temples.

Milk and its products like chhena, mawa, malai, makhan, ghee, rabdi are used abundantly in many of the Rajasthani sweets & desserts.

Owing to dry atmosphere of Rajasthan, Besan (gram flour) and lentils are also commonly used for preparing desserts apart from wheat flour.

The Vaishnavite traditions of Rajasthan like Pushtimarg, Nimabarka and Ramanandi are known for their Naivedheya and Chhapan Bhog tradition in their temples. In this tradition, the temple deity is offered royally embellished food and sweets rich in dry fruits and milk products. These embellished sweets were then distributed amongst common people and devotees visiting the temple. Such culinary temple traditions were patronized by Rajput royals and wealthy Baniya merchants of Rajasthan.

In Rajasthan each and every festival and religious occasion is associated with some unique dessert. Some of the popular Rajasthani desserts are:

Other popular sweets include: Jalebi, Imarti, Mawa Jamun, Rasgulla, Rabdi, Ras Malai, Palang Torh, Milk-Cake (Alwar ka Mawa) etc.[28]

Typical Rajasthani dishes


Dal Pahit (Lentil soups)

Use of lentils and pulses is very common in Rajasthani cuisine. The combination of Dal & Roti forms the staple diet of Rajasthan.

Dal Based preparations

Apart from lentil soups, a number of food preparations are made using lentils like mangodi, pakodas, pittod, gatte, sev, pappad etc. Gram flour called besan and moong flour called mogar are frequently used in Rajasthani cuisine.

Millet based preparations

Vegetable preparations

Some unique vegetables used in Rajasthan are: Ker (Capparis decidua), Sangri (Prosopis cineraria), Gunda (Cordia dichotoma), Kumatiya (Acacia senegal), Guar phali (cluster bean), Moringa (drumstick), Kikoda (spiny gourd), Kamal kakdi (lotus stem), Kachri (Cucumis pubescence), fogla, borkut ber, fofaliya (dry tinda). Other common vegetables of Rajasthan are Aloo (potatoes), Kanda (onion), Bhindi (okra), Gajar (carrot) cucurbits like pumpkin and ash gourd. Greens of Sarson (mustard), Chana (gram), bathua, methi (fenugreek) are also commonly used. Vegetable preparations are often called Saag, while saucy preparations are called Teewan or Teeman. The combo of Saag & Rota forms part of staple diet of Rajasthan.



Chutneys, Launji, Chhunda & Athana pickles


Launji refers to sweet & tangy relish prepared from vegetables or fruits, which is served as an accompaniment in a Rajasthani meal.[44] Variations of Launji include:


Many a times, sweet preserves are made from fruits and the preparation is called Chhunda. Some variations include:


Athana or Athano are pickles prepared in Rajasthani and North Indian cuisine. Some varaitions include:

Mirchi Tipore

An instant pickle is made from chopped green chillies is called Mirchi Tipore. This is different from Mirchi Athana as Tipore is an instant pickle prepared using chopped chillies, while Mirchi Athana is prepared using whole slit chillies (usually stuffed).[46]


Post-prandial digestives


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