Karim’s to Qureshi’s: 8 Must-Visit Places for The Best Kebabs in Delhi
Searching for the best kebabs in Delhi?Next time you’re visiting NCR, make sure to stop by these 8 iconic eateries that serve the most delicious kebabs.
Picture this: succulent chunks of tender, marinated meat, skewered alongside vibrant, colourful vegetables, all kissed by the flames of a charcoal grill. Each bite — a symphony of flavours, with the smoky essence mingling harmoniously with the aromatic spices infusing the meat.
Truly a piece of heaven on the plate, kebabs epitomise indulgence, satisfaction, and sheer culinary bliss. While nearly every part of India offers its own version of kebabs, if you reside in Delhi, consider yourself truly blessed.
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The Better India scoured the capital city for the best kebab places and compiled a list supported by some of the biggest foodies in the country.
1. Qureshi’s Kabab
Delhi’s iconic and beloved eatery comes highly recommended by Delhi’s foodie, Anubhav Sapra of Delhi Food Walks.
Whether you’re savouring the tender and succulent Seekh Kebabs, the aromatic and flavourful Boti Kebabs, or the melt-in-your-mouth Galouti Kebabs, each bite is a testament to the mastery of the Qureshi family’s craft.
2. Al Nisar
Recommended to you by a famous food blogger Shirin Mehrotra and many locals of the city is Al Nisar opposite Jama Masjid. Known for their mouth-watering seekh and boti kebab, the eatery is a must-try.
“Their mutton seekh is super juicy which is wrapped in a roomali and eaten with chutney. In my limited experience of eating kebabs in Delhi, this is easily one of the best,” she says in a tweet.
I love kababs from Al Nisar opp. Jama Masjid. Same lane as Qureshi's. Their mutton seekh is super juicy which is wrapped in a roomali and eaten with chutney. In my limited experience of eating kababs in Delhi, this is easily one of the best. pic.twitter.com/fcZi2mnSNx— Shirin شیریں शीरीं (@shirinmehrotra) June 10, 2022
3. Al Jawahar
Situated right in front of the Jama Masjid, Al Jawahar is a hidden gem, offering the perfect opportunity to indulge in authentic Mughlai cuisine.
In addition to its delicious kebabs, the eatery is renowned for specialties such as Jahangiri, Changezi, and Afghani Chicken. The iconic eatery is a favourite of rapper and singer Honey Singh. “I love their pherni, tikki and kebab,” he had said in an interview.
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4. Saleem Javed
When actor and influencer Swara Bhaskar was in college in Delhi, her favourite food to snack on used to be kebabs. In an interview with Netflix, she says, “We used to bunk classes and go to this shop, it was just a small makeshift place in Khan Market. They have now expanded and are called Saleem Javed but their recipe is the same. We used to devour their chicken and mutton tikka. This used to be followed by a bunta (localised version of a lemonade) from a stall right in front of the eatery.”
Apart from his juicy tikka, Saleem Javed is also famous for its delicious rolls made with paper-thin roomali roti wrapped with the meat of your choice.
It would be unfair of us to compile a list of kebab places in Delhi and not talk about the iconic Karim’s. The iconic eatery is said to have first opened in 1913 and generations of loyal customers have flocked to Karim’s to indulge in its signature dishes.
Be it the succulent Tandoori Raan (roast leg of lamb), the aromatic Mutton Seekh Kebabs, the rich and creamy Mutton Korma, and the legendary Chicken Jahangiri, every dish at the eatery is heavenly.
It is a favourite spot of top politicians, diplomats, film stars, and cricketers from both India and Pakistan including Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi.
In an interview, Manoj Bajpayye says, “Agar Dilli aao toh yeh do jagah (Karim’s and Jawahar) toh zaroor jaana.” (If you come to Delhi, then you must try Karim’s and Jawahar).
6. Babu Bhai Kebab Wale
Situated at Bazar Chitli Kabar, near Masjid Sayed Rfai Wali, this tiny shop, no bigger than a two-wheeler scooter, churns out kilos of seekh kebabs every day. Famous for their tender and juicy kebab, the place is a go-to kebab place for many Delhi locals.
In a quest to find the best kebabs in Delhi, popular food blogger ‘Spice it With Sam’ rates all the places he tried the kebabs from. So no guesses as to which was his favourite — Babu Bhai Kebab Wale. His more than 180k followers seemed to agree with his list. “Babu Bhai’s kebabs are to die for, yaar! I’ve been a regular since my dad used to take me there as a kid. Now I miss it, but whenever I’m back in Delhi, visiting Babu Bhai’s is my first stop!” says one of his ardent followers.
7. Rajinder ka Dhaba
Gary Mehigan, an English-Australian chef and restaurateur who was one of the original judges of the Network 10 series, MasterChef Australia, visited this iconic eatery in Delhi to devour their delicious curries and of course, their juicy kebabs.
Serving taste buds since 1968, the eatery was just a small roadside stall. Over the decades, it has grown to take over the marketplace in Safdarjung. Serving both vegetarian and non-vegetarian food, the dhaba now has both open and closed seating areas for you to enjoy your meals in.
8. Sab Ke Khatir and MI Food Center
Located on Lodhi Road, both the eateries are a favourite of many Delhi locals. Vivek Rana, executive chef, The Claridges, who has decades of culinary experience says in an interview with Conde Nast, “I still remember going to eat butter malai tikka and mutton galauti at Sab ke Khatir after long shifts; this place is still popular with hoteliers since it is open until wee hours and I still go there.”
“Another favourite is MI Food Center. They make excellent kebabs of all kinds,” he adds.
So how many of these kebab places have you been to?
(Edited by Padmashree Pande)
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