Vegetarian Food in Bhutan

What’s with the merriment all around?

As we strolled in the backyards of the most buoyant country of the world, Bhutan, we came across some really scrumptious food. A week of bliss! As we were famished most of the time, thanks to the endless walking, delicious food was the only option to settle down for.

You’d be astonished/glad to know about the absence of the popular(don’t know why) global food chains in Bhutan. Good! They look their best in their uniforms and they eat healthy. *Blink*

So here are some of the local dishes one must try! You also get regular Indian food and a number of noodle brands out there too. Do not worry, none shall starve! Also, these are just the local cuisines, one can try a hand at the local fast food and coffee.
As a vegetarian myself, I was skeptical about finding vegetables around. But voila!

1. Ema Datshi

Ema=Chili, Datshi= cheese


As exotic as it sounds, it’s a culmination of your favourite cheese and chili. It’s soupy or dry depending upon the chef of the restaurant, but this one dish is omnipresent.

2. Shamu Datshi

Shamu=Mushrooms and you got Datshi right!


Needless to say, this one was my favorite. I have been a mushroom addict(edible vegetable :p) since the day I understood what food is. Add cheese to it and it you are in

heaven(pun intended!). Locals here prefer eating it with rice and a chili garlic chutney! Must try!

3. Kewa Datshi



Another round of Datshi available for you potato lovers. It’s juicy and crisp depending on how you like it. And when has potato and cheese not tasted mind blowing?

4. Eu Chum


Yes that is evidently red colored rice. Locally grown, locals find it the most suitable to cook every day. Eaten along with a variety of gravies like Ema and Shamu Datshi, one can expect to find this available almost everywhere. Delighted rice eaters! 🙂

5. Khuli

Khuli= Buckwheat pancakes


Does not exactly taste like the pancake you are aware of, but it is definitely worth a try! It’s a form of a local bread. And since you are a foodie, why not ?

6. Suja

Suja=Butter tea


Sounds weird? Did, to me too, but I enjoyed sipping on some Suja tea. It’s salty and have it with cheese croissant. Thank me later.

7. Doma


This Bhutanese paan(Areca nut and betel leaf) is extremely popular amidst the locals. I learnt that it isn’t very pleasing in taste and smell and refrained from trying it. You adventurous fellas can.


I visited the local fruits market which is known to be popular in Thimphu. I found the best plums and cherries out there! Pineapples, apples, peaches all were ravishing. You can live only on fruits in Bhutan. They are mouth watering, handpicked and extremely fresh.


Non Alcoholic– With a number of coffee shops in the market areas, a teetotaler will find solace with the varieties in Bhutan. Although I prefer my tea stronger, it still is refreshing. Coffee, on the other hand, is undeniably addictive.
Do not miss: Champaca Cafe, Paro
Champaca cafe has the best carrot and banana cakes in town.

Alcoholic– Wow! Cheap cheap cheap beer all around you! They have devouring peach and apple wines as well at very reasonable rates. Happiness indeed.

For further information and a planned itinerary, visit Bhutan In a Week!

Get going!

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