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Punjabi cuisine is associated with food from the Punjab region of India and Pakistan. This cuisine has a rich tradition of many distinct and local ways of cooking. One is a special form of tandoori cooking that is now famous in other parts of India, UK, Canada, and in many parts of the world.

The local cuisine of Punjab is heavily influenced by the agriculture and farming lifestyle prevalent from the times of the ancient Harappan Civilization. Locally grown staple foods form the major part of the local cuisine. Distinctively Punjabi cuisine is known for its rich, buttery flavours along with the extensive vegetarian and meat dishes. Main dishes include Sarson da saag and makki di roti.

Basmati rice is the indigenous variety of Punjab and many varieties of rice dishes have been developed with this variety. Many vegetable and meat based dishes are developed for this type of rice.

Common dishes


Aloo Paratha with Butter

Breakfast recipes with respect to different regions within Punjab varies. Common ones are Chana masala, Chole kulche, Parathas with CurdAloo Paratha | Panner Paratha | Gobi Paratha, Halwa poori,[12] Bhatoora, Falooda, Makhni doodh, Amritsari Lassi, Masala chai, Tea, Amritsari Kulchas, Phainis, Dahi vada, Dahi, Khoa, Paya, Aloo Paratha with Butter, Panjeeri with Milk.

In upper Punjab Pakistan the Lahori Katlama is famous for the breakfast as well.


Kulcha Amritsari

Paneer One of the South Asian Cheese variants commonly used in cooking in Punjab

  • Khichdi:[18] In the Punjab, khichdi is made of millet floor, mung beans and moth lentils. However, khichdi made of rice and lentils is also consumed.
  • Paneer Recipes like Shahi Paneer; Khoya Paneer, Paneer Kofta, Amritsari Paneer, Matar Paneer, paneer paratha [19] etc…
  • Panjiri: This is a traditional Punjabi dish[20] which has a generous amount of almonds, walnuts, pistachios, dry dates, cashew nuts along with whole wheat flour, sugar, edible gum, poppy seeds and fennel seeds to make the traditional dish of ‘panjri’ or also known as ‘dabra’.
  • Pulse, bean and lentil; Saag; Baingan bharta.[21]
  • Punj Ratani Dal:[14] A mixture of 5 lentils.
  • Punjabi Kadhi Pakora (traditional curry with rice. Kadhi is a type of curry made by cooking garamflour with curd or buttermilk. Fried lumps with salt and chillies are also added.
  • Punjabi Lassi paneer: In the Punjab, it is traditional to prepare lassi and then extract the paneer which would then be consumed by adding water, salt and chili. Lassi paneer can also be added to potatoes and spices to make a curry which resembles scrambled eggs. Lassi paneer cannot be cut into cubes as paneer from milk can be.


Punjabis eat a variety of Breads. Flatbreads and raised breads are eaten on a daily basis. Raised breads are known as khamiri roti. Sunflower and flax seeds are also added in some breads occasionally. The breads may be made of different types of flour and can be made in various ways:

  • Baked in the tandoor like naan,[14] tandoori roti,[14] kulcha,[14] or lachha paratha[14]
  • Dry baked (Indian griddle), jowar ki roti, baajre ki roti and makki ki roti (these are also smeared with white butter)
  • Shallow fried like [[paratha]
  • Deep fried like puri[14] and bhatoora[14] (a fermented dough)
  • Salt-rising bread: Salt rising bread is a unique bread found only in the Salt Range region of Punjab, Pakistan. Since rock salt is readily available in salt range so many people in the past made use of salt instead of yeast to leaven the bread.


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