The Indian food in Dallas is its best-kept secret.
The greater Dallas area has a large, booming Indian population from every region in the subcontinent. The types of food in India are so different from region to region so it is great to be able to experience it all plate by plate. The great thing about the Dallas area is that you’re also able to get everything from street food to a full sit-down experience.
This Dallas Indian food guide is set up to reflect the best dishes to try if you’re in an Indian restaurant in Dallas, plus where you can find them!
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The Kinds of Indian Food in Dallas
The biggest divide food-wise in Indian cuisine is between North Indian and South Indian food. While there are more subdivisions, this will be the biggest and most prevalent one.
North Indian food is mostly around the curry and naan combination. When you think of a creamy, gravy based dish it is most typically a North Indian dish. Most often Indian restaurants around the US tend to be North Indian.
South Indian dishes typically feature rice as the main feature in some way. South Indian Biryanis are very famous and the varieties of rice dishes will blow your mind: Tamarind Rice, Curd Rice, Chicken Biryani, etc. There are so many to choose from!
Another really unique aspect of South Indian cuisine is its filter coffee. It is fairly strong, but a hot steel cup of South Indian filter coffee will make your body and soul come alive. It is one of those things that adds such a special touch to a meal.
Indian Foods to Order in Dallas
In this list, I tried to highlight several dishes that are extremely popular but also very unique to one another. The Top list comprises multiple regions and styles of cooking to capture the variety in Indian cuisine.
Samosas are a classic appetizer and most any restaurant. You can never go wrong ordering these. It is a flaky pastry stuffed with a spiced potato and pea mixture.
Otherwise known as “Murgh Makhani”, this dish is diced chicken served in a buttery, tomato gravy.
Cubes of Paneer or Indian cottage cheese in a tomato gravy with peas.
A South Indian staple, it is a thin and crispy crepe made from a fermented rice flour batter. Typically it is stuffed with spiced potatoes and served with chutneys and sambar which is a lentil-based stew.
Primarily a North Indian dish, this is a spiced chickpea curry served with a fried wheat flatbread.
Biryani is the pride and joy of Indian food around the world. Typically it’s a spiced rice dish served with some sort of meat. You can easily find a vegetable option, but the meat is really what makes this dish iconic.
This is a spicy, fried appetizer consisting of paneer or chicken, pan-fried in a hot and tangy sauce.
The Best Indian Restaurants in Dallas
If you ever are looking for a street food fix, Honest is the place to be. There might be a wait but it is SO worth it. This Dallas Indian restaurant is actually a very popular vegetarian chain that started from a family-run street cart in Ahmedabad, India in 1975.
However, this location is truly the best location in my experience. The food is always spectacular, and the service is great.
The Bahubali sandwich here is legendary, it comes grilled or cold, cut in quarters overflowing with cheese with cucumbers and pineapple jam. It sounds bizarre but it is so flavorful and yummy you’ll polish off the whole tray before you know it!
The owner is often in the restaurant meeting patrons and he always goes out of his way to show people warmth and a smile when they come in. Definitely a must-see!
Fun Pizza Kitchen
Fun Pizza Kitchen is a great fusion place to switch up your normal Indian food experience. The Achari Tandoori Chicken Pizza or the Garlic Veggie Pizza are a great go-to. They offer carry out and delivery too if you can’t make it in.
If you love spice, ask for some chutney on the side. It isn’t super widely advertised on the menu, maybe not at all but it is the perfect pair.
They also have frozen kulfis in the chest freezer. Kulfis are Indian ice cream popsicles, similar to a paleta in Latin culture. If you go a little overboard with the chutney, a kulfi is a perfect cool down.
India 101 gets its name from the enormous 101-item buffet. This is a great way to try a bunch of different items from all over India in one spot! You’ll also find a range of tastes and textures from spicy to sweet and soft to crispy.
There are popular street food items and also curries and rice dishes to give you a well rounded out meal. The portion sizes are small so that you can try bites of many different foods. They do take reservations, and it is recommended to reserve ahead of time during peak lunch or dinner hours as there does tend to be a rush during these times.
This Indian restaurant in Dallas is great if you have a large party that has a large spectrum of preferences and tastes.
Satvik food is a very spiritual experience in the Hindu tradition. Located inside the Hare Krishna temple in Dallas is the oldest vegetarian restaurant in the city.
According to the Satvik tradition, one should abstain from using meat, fish, eggs, onion, or garlic. Despite the dietary restrictions, the food is always delicious and very fresh. In fact, no canned or frozen vegetables are allowed in the kitchen!
The food is served buffet style and the variety is always endless!
Bombay Chowpatty is a great go-to for a quick bite on the go before exploring other attractions in Dallas.
This vegetarian street food restaurant is pumping out all of the Indian classics. Pav bhaji, Samosa Pav, Papdi Chaat, whatever you get it’s all good here. The taste is spot on to what you would find in most major cities in India.
Chaat is the street food of India, so it’s meant to be a quick bite. The portions are the same way so it’s great for ordering a bunch of items and sharing with a friend!
If you want the whole plate to yourself, the lunch platters will have you filled up! The platter is rice, curry, a sweet item, and tea or coffee, it’s a treat you can’t beat!
Saravana Bhavan is the Mecca of South Indian food in Dallas. This restaurant is vegetarian but it has such filling options that you won’t miss the meat! There are a variety of rice dishes and curries here, but the main thing you should come for is a dosa.
Dosas are very popular in South Indian cuisine, mainly for breakfast but really at any time of day. There is a large variety of dosas offered here, and the thing that really makes a dosa perfect is the chutney. All dosas are served with a variety of chutneys and they’re all good. You can’t go wrong!