Mohammed Ali Road
Photograph: Courtesy flickr/cc/meenakshi madhavan

The 10 best street food spots in Mumbai

Reflecting the city’s diverse cultural makeup, the best street food in Mumbai will take your taste buds to a new world


As magical and captivating as Mumbai is, it can sometimes feel a little overwhelming – especially for first-time visitors. With a population that far exceeds 20 million, Mumbai is constantly moving – your best bet is to take it as it goes. And that rule applies to the street food, too.

Step outside Mumbai’s restaurants and you won’t be disappointed. The city’s food off the street is the result of an ever-increasing melting pot of communities and grows more diverse by the day. Needless to say, it’s worth celebrating – here are the best places to get a taste.

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Best street food in Mumbai

1. Girgaum Chowpatty

The city beach is a favourite street food spot for visitors and locals alike and offers a glimpse of the hallmark “sand, sea and lip-smacking chaat experience.” There’s bhel puri for the health freak, made with boiled potatoes, raw mango and chutneys. The adventurous ones can opt for the spicy pani puri. While most vendors lining up on the beach claim to serve the best variant of their offered food, we recommend visiting Stall No. 11- Badshah’s to revive your taste buds.

2. Crawford Market

Every evening, this area is teeming with people, like swarms of bees out on a mission.  Check out the outstanding seafood dishes such as the pomfret fry and crab curry that food artists carve out for night revellers. It is worth your while to check out the food stalls on Nagdevi street opposite Crawford market every evening, turning out melt-in-your-mouth succulent seekhs and payas prepared in a giant steel furnace. Do try out the special nalli nihari and the harisa, which is the only available vegetarian dish.


3. Khau Galli

On any given day, locals eat like kings in the city’s Khau Gallis, which literally translates to food lanes. Khau gallis remain busy throughout the lunch hours into late at night with roadside carts offering a visual- and pocket-friendly gastronomic affair. Khau gallis are also often a great place to people watch: expect young working adults and elderly people devour shawarma and the grilled Bombay sandwich. The most popular Khau Galli stretches from SNDT College to Cross Maidan in South Mumbai.

4. Anand Stall

Have you even visited Mumbai, if you haven’t snacked on vada pav? A native dish to Mumbai, it is a deep-fried potato dumpling, stuffed into a pao with a generous portion of red and green chutneys. While it is available across stalls and sometimes even in high-end restaurants, for the best experience you’ll want to visit Anand Stall in Vile Parle or taste the original dish served at Vaidya’s stall on Platform No 1 on Dadar Station. Just a word of caution, though: never call it the Indian burger in front of the locals.


5. Fort

Hidden amidst several restaurants, an unassuming low-budget eating spot, Pancham Puriwala in Fort, boasts of history older than the first train introduced by the British in India. Gulp down a glass of lassi, a traditional sweet drink, along with a plate of potato and peas curry with puri (a flour dough bread). Listen to legendary tales involving Fort’s owner: he walked from his home town in North India to Mumbai on foot to feed India’s largest city.

6. CST Station

Pav (pao or bread) originally came to India while under Portuguese rule. Since then, Mumbai’s love affair with pav continues unabated, usually accompanying a thick red curry of mashed vegetables, with copious amounts of butter, a squeeze of lemon and a dash of raw onion. While the dish can be found in dozens of kiosks and stalls across the city, visit the Cannon Pav Bhaji centre, next to the CST subway, for a satiating portion.


7. Dadar

When in Mumbai, do as the Mumbaikars do. For a hearty breakfast meal, head to the popular local haunt Aaswad. Located in the central suburb of Dadar in Shivaji Nagar, the place has been around for more than three decades and is the city’s most visited vegetarian spot, serving regional Maharashtrian cuisine. A must-try dish here is the misal pav, a spicy moth bean curry.

8. Haji Ali Juice Centre

Another spot you must visit is the Haji Ali Juice Centre, near the majestic Haji Ali Mosque at Worli Seaface. The roadside shop has earned a loyal following since its opening in the late 1930s, refreshing the faithful with healthy sandwiches and juices. Try out the most delicious custard, loaded with fruits, dry fruits and blended-in milk cream.


9. Zaveri Bazaar Street

Zaveri Bazaar, the city’s diamond hub, is bursting at the seams with shops owned by old-time jewellers and little food stalls. Watch a hawker toss dosa for traders and craftsmen. Gorge on vegetarian snacks such as kachoris, chaats and samosas. Try out the ingenious pudlas: a Gujarati snack made of gram flour or chickpea flour and tossed with vegetables at Mohanbhai Pudlawala’s at chai time. Do not leave without trying out the khichiya papad, a thin crisp disc made of gram flour with 56 spices.

10. Mohammed Ali Road

For an indulgent non-vegetarian gourmet experience, head straight to Mohammed Ali Road.  Don’t miss the delicious bhuna gosht (spicy mutton curry). From sizzling tikas, fluffy pattis, succulent kebabs to mouth-watering malpuas and other delectable culinary secrets, you’ll be thoroughly satisfied while striking a conversation with the patrons of the famous Minara Masjid.

Visit when these top events are taking place

  • Things to do

As in the rest of India, religion plays an important role in the city’s daily life, so expect for a fair share of the best events in Mumbai to revolve around religious holidays. The common theme? Unbridled revelry played out in the streets, which means you don’t have to go too far to be in the midst of the action. 

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