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How To Get Vegetarian Food In Nagaland

If you clicked this link and are reading this, we can safely assume you are a vegetarian who really wants to go to the beautiful state of Nagaland but is slightly disheartened because of the brilliant reviews of its food options, unfortunately (for you) which includes non-vegetarian items mostly. And now you’re wondering - will I have to just carry packed food to survive there? Simple answer - no.

Yes, the state is popular for its non-vegetarian options. And while your brain will plant seeds of doubt about whether or not to visit this place, your heart will nod a yes looking at its beauty. We say, listen to your heart. But of course, we don’t want you to do it by keeping your culinary senses unsatisfied, especially on a vacation.

So we’ll tell you how to make the most of the vegetarian options in Nagaland and list a few restaurants that serve vegetarian food in Kohima.

Cook the Naga cuisine with the help of locals

We know it might seem like a far-fetched option on a trip, but we wanted to start with the most interesting one. If you have time, at least for two days of your whole trip, consider cooking with your group, fellow solo travellers, or with the locals. Why we love this option is, apart from an excellent bonding activity with the locals, it gives you a glimpse of their fresh locally grown fruits, vegetables, and different varieties of rice, only available in this region. For example, normal rice, beaten rice, rice beer, rice wine, and so on. Beaten rice is excellent for quick energy and you can carry its dish when you travel. Just add water, and after 5 minutes, drain it, and add salt or sugar along with fruits and nuts.

The locals will be more than happy to share their popular vegetarian recipes with you and help you if needed. And you don’t need to go for complex dishes. For example, choose something like their famous Naga Galho without meat. It is similar to khichdi and can be made using seasonal vegetables within 20 minutes. Another example is Hinkejvu, a simple Naga dish, made by boiling a mix of colocasia, shredded cabbage leaves, mustard leaves, French beans, and salt.

If you would not like to cook, you’ll find local places where people are ready to cook if you give them the ingredients. Here, you can decide which dish and ingredients you would like, and relish the taste of homemade food.

If nothing else, if you stay with the locals, and you’re not in a mood to experiment, the locals will make sure you get simple rice and dal too. So there’s nothing to worry really!

Savor the puris from roadside stalls

When you’re on the road, you’ll find a lot of stalls that sell puris. For the uninitiated, they are small flatbreads fried in oil. In these stalls, you’ll normally get a spicy potato and yellow-peas curry with them. This is a good option if you’re tired of eating similar rice-based dishes from restaurants. You might find it slightly oily, but it’s quite filling and serves the purpose of tasting something different for a while.

Explore the vegetarian-friendly restaurants in Kohima

Finally, the easiest option when you’re on a trip - eat at a restaurant. While this might be absolutely normal in other regions of the country, it gets a little tricky for vegetarians in Kohima. Most restaurants serve simple and limited vegetarian options. You’ll typically get a rice-based dish served with dal, boiled vegetables, and sometimes chutney, or noodles. We recommend asking the staff whether they cook vegetarian food separately or not.

Here’s a list of a few restaurants you can try the next time you’re in Kohima:

  • Yaotsu’s Pure-Veg Restaurant:

    • It is a vegetarian’s delight as its menu has multiple options for them, including South Indian dishes.

    • You can enjoy the picturesque view of Kohima from its spacious rooftop.

    • Address: Below foot bridge Mezhür higher secondary school, Kohima 797001 India

  • JAT Restaurant:

    • They use separate utensils to cook vegetarian food. Please confirm with the staff to be sure.

    • The place is spacious and has a lot of delicious Indian dishes, but some find it slightly more expensive than other restaurants.

    • Address: Near Jail Gate, Jail Colony, Kohima, Nagaland 797001

  • Royal Veg Restaurant:

    • While this is not a pure vegetarian restaurant, it serves a few vegetarian dishes at an affordable price.

    • Some of the options are masala dosa, aloo paratha, chutney made from king chilli, etc.

    • Address: h/no 170 NH2 Japfu road, B.O.C, Kohima, Nagaland

  • The Morung Kitchen:

    • Again, this is a restaurant with limited vegetarian options.

    • You can treat yourself to some Naga-style veg noodles here.

    • Address: NH2, Midland Colony, Opposite Oking Hospital, Kohima, Nagaland 797001

We are aware, Nagaland has still a long way to go before it becomes a heaven for vegetarians like it is now for non-vegetarians. But that being said, we strongly believe, it is a myth that there are no good options for vegetarians. It’s all about exploring, and staying true to the essence of travel. Come, join us for a trip, and we’ll show you how we do this effortlessly or make it look like it, haha! :)

Contributed by:

Freelance Content Writer & Copywriter

After a short stint as a software engineer at Capgemini, she decided to go back to her first love - writing. She started her journey as a content writer in 2019 and considers it one of the best decisions of her life. Today, she cannot imagine doing something else for a living than coming up with the right words that will justify and bring to life her clients’ ideas. While her agency experience gave her exposure to writing for multiple sectors, her heart lies in topics related to women, mental health, career counselling, employee wellbeing, travel, personal development, and lifestyle. If she's not staring at the blank Google doc waiting for inspiration to strike, you'll either find her lost in a book or practising for her next dance routine!

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