Food in Kancheepuram

It is said that the way to one’s heart is through stomach. Good food is a weakness for most of us and we Indians love to boast of this weakness. Since India has diverse cultures and traditions so are the varieties of food available. Kancheepuram being a city in the state of Tamil Nadu in the southern part of India, the dominant cuisine available in Kancheepuram is south Indian but one can also find north Indian, Chinese, and Italian  food. Since food in Kancheepuram has typically south Indian influence, you would find a lot of presence of rice, spices, chillies, coconut and native fruits and vegetables in the cuisine.

Food in Kancheepuram


A conventional restaurant following Kancheepuram food style would have something like the below in the breakfast menu:

idli (steamed cakes made of rice and lentils served with chutney and sambhar)

pongal (sweet dish consisting of rice, milk and topped with cardamom, jaggery etc.)

dosa (pancake made of black lentils and rice), aval(a type of rice)

puttu (steamed cylinder of ground rice layered with coconut)

Utthapam (thick pancake topped with several ingredients, something similar to Indian Pizza)

upma (thick porridge made from dry roasted semolina with added seasonings or vegetables).  

Idiyappam (rice flour pressed into noddle form and steamed)

Appam (pancake made with fermented rice and coconut milk)

Sevai (sweet dish, made of rice vermicelli)

Vadai with coconut chutney (snacks made from dal, lentils, gram flour or potato)

Apart from all these mouthwatering dishes, Kancheepuram people love to drink coffee. The most famous is the filter coffee. The filter coffee has high percentage of coffee beans about 70 to 80 percent.

Lunch and Dinner

In Kancheepuram and most of the south Indian states, rice is the staple food. Some of the dishes for lunch and dinner served in Kancheepuram restaurants are:

Kuzhambu (it is eaten generally with rice. It is made of varieties of dal including vegetables)

Sambhar (is a vegetable semi solid type based on broth made with tamarind, it’s very popular here and is eaten with rice or dosa)

Rasam (it’s a kind of soup which has tamarind juice as base added with variety of vegetable, tomatoes, spices, chilies etc. It hits the taste bud instantly; it is eaten with rice here)

Puliyogare (it is basically tamarind rice mixed with ground nuts, pea nuts, coconut, red chilli, jaggery, dal etc. The food does not go bad till long, so people prepare and carry this to have during long journeys).

Thayir Sadam (curd rice or yogurt rice added with chillies, ginger etc. The dish when served with a dash of pickle will tempt you to lick fingers).

Parota (similar to north Indian Paranthas, made of maida).

Non vegetarian food specialties are

Kottu (beef or chicken or egg are minced, chopped and rolled into a special kind of roti called Kottu roti. It is little similar to the north Indian dish Shwarma. For vegetarians,  vegetables, cheese are rolled into the roti)

Karuvattu Kuzhambu (salted dried fish topped with tomato sauce), Chettinad pepper Chicken, Old fish fry,

Muttaiparotta (similar to the north Indian Parantha, but it is minced with scrambled egg)

Karidosai (dosa with mutton stuffing), meatballs and many more

Desserts include:

Payasam (commonly known as Kheer, it is rice pudding made by boiling rice with milk topped with raisins, cashew nuts, pistachio etc.)

(similar to modak in north India, this is stuffing of grated coconut mixed with jaggery into rice flour and then baked).

Kesari (also known as sooji ka halwa in north India, it is an orange color sweet made from semolina and is most popular during festive seasons)

Thengai Paal (It is a sweet dish made of hot milk, jaggery, coconut and cotton seeds).
Ulundu Kali ( It is made Jaggery, black gram and ginger oil).

Oputtu (similar to Pizza but it has sweet stuffing inside).

Traditionally in Kancheepuram, the food is served on banana leaf and food is eaten after sitting on floor but due to cosmopolitan culture and westernization, the banana leaf culture has given away to the western culture of buffet and fine dines. Nevertheless even today you can find a restaurant in Kancheepuram following the old tradition; you can jump in there to get a taste and feel of authentic Tamil cuisine and environment.

Organic food in Kancheepuram

Many organic dealers and retailers have come up in Kancheepuram as people are becoming more and more health conscious. Below is a list of such organic stores in Kancheepuram:

AM Traders
Address: 54, Kamarajar Street, Kanchipuram- 631501 Near Shakthi Hotel
Telephone: 044 27228492

Hand In Hand India
Address: No 90 A, Nesarathpettai Opposite Pachaiyappas Men College, Chengalpattu Main Road, Little Kanchipuram- 631503
Telephone: 9843818146, (044) 67201014

Sri Kumarn Rice Mill
Address: 127/2, Indira Gandhi Street, Kanchipuram GPO, Near Chitra Gupta Temple
Telephone: 044 2723072

Poormali General Store
Address: Sriperumbudur Main Road, Sriperumbudur, Kanchipuram- 602106, Near Sriperumbudur Bus Stand
Telephone: 9894210752

New Start Health Food Centre
Address: No 54, Sriperumbudur Taluk, Mevaluruppam Arakonam Road Valarpuram Post, Sriperumbudur, Kanchipuram – 602105
Telephone: 7845324611, 9094306979

Navaneethammal Rice Mill
Address: 18-A, Perumal Street, Kanchipuram GPO, Kanchipuram- 631502
Landmark:  Opposite Karthik Theatre

Food from other countries in Kancheepuram

As Kancheepuram witnesses a tremendous growth in the influx of foreign tourists,  many multicuisne restaurants specializing in Continental, Chinese, Mexican, Italian, Thai, Korean, Japanese cuisine have opened in Kancheepuram.
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