New York City, or “The Big Apple,” as it’s often called, is the city of Broadway Performances, exclusive shops and boutiques, skyscrapers, the hustle and bustle, and of course, the Statue of Liberty. NYC has piqued the interest of people from all over the world. It’s a melting pot of many cultures, and there’s more to do than one could imagine.
New York City is also known for its diversity in cuisines, as there are so many restaurants packed on each corner, you never run out of options. For those particularly interested in Indian food, where do you begin? The best restaurants in NYC not only give you genuine Indian fares like Tandoori, Masala, Samosas, and Biryani, but the service has to be stellar as well.
New York City Indian restaurants are a dime a dozen. I’ve weeded out the best of the best for your convenience.
Indian Accent Cuisine
123 W 56th St, New York, NY 10019
Visitors can find Indian Accent Cuisine in Thompson Central Park, New York. The atmosphere is casual and the decor is chic, with neutral colors and Indian art hanging on the walls. Locals say that IAC is one of the best Indian restaurants in NYC. The servers are helpful and friendly, and they make recommendations for first-timers.
The restaurant boasts a nice variety of teas and desserts, and they also have specialty cocktails available. According to reviews, you don’t want to miss out on the Assamese Pork Dumplings or the Kolhapuri Chicken Salad.
Using global influences and techniques, Indian Accent Cuisine gives guests a memorable fine dining experience that transports them to a cozy courtyard in India, if for just one evening.
Chola Coastal Indian Cuisine
232 E 58th St, New York, NY 10022
Chola Coastal Indian Cuisine is an upscale establishment that is in Midtown, off of Lexington Ave. The restaurant focuses on producing coastal Indian cuisine like fresh and creative seafood dishes. The decor is sleek, modern, and inviting with comfortable vibes. It’s hard to find a high-quality Indian restaurant in NYC that checks all of the boxes.
Chola has excellent drinks and their vast menu covers everything from Samosas to Tandoori, to Vindaloo dishes and more. All of the food is flavorful with traditional Indian spices. My favorite dish was the Chettinad Lamb Fry. I highly suggest you drop by Chola while in NYC.
Dhaba Indian Cuisine
108 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10016
Dhaba Indian Cuisine is in the Murray Hill neighborhood, near the Flatiron Building. This is a small restaurant that has tasteful decor and a relaxed setting. Dhaba focuses on dishes and flavors from the Punjab region of India. You’re sure to have a memorable fine dining experience since the staff is so attentive and personable.
They have both vegan and vegetarian options, and they serve beer, wine, liquor, and also signature cocktails. Dhaba also features a lunch buffet with delicious meats that are moist and tender. On my trip to NYC, I tried the Goa Fish Curry, which has pronounced coconut and tamarind flavors. Delicious from start to finish!
99 Hudson St, New York, NY 10013
In the Flatiron section of Manhattan, you’ll find Tamarind Tribeca. It’s a large two-story restaurant that specializes in a fusion of genuine Indian food with a New York flare. There are many windows along the perimeter of the building, allowing floods of natural light in the daytime. And at night, beautiful chandeliers give off softer lights that make for a soothing and sophisticated ambiance in this upscale eatery.
They have a lot of unique dishes to choose from, and the servers answer any questions you may have regarding specific ingredients. Popular dishes include the Nawabi Shammi Kebab, which consists of ground lamb patties, lentils, chickpeas, and a variety of spices, and the Roasted Pepper Soup.
Adda Indian Canteen
31-31 Thomson Ave, Queens, NY 11101
Adda Indian Canteen is a neighborhood restaurant in Long Island City. Their menu has traditional Indian cuisine with diverse herbs and in-house spices. The restaurant is decorated with Indian newspapers on the walls, and the setting is bright and casual.
Adda has won numerous awards for the best Indian restaurant in NYC. They’ve also been featured in the New York Times for exquisite dining. Reviews mention the Goat Curry and the Chicken Biryani as some of the most notable dishes that pack a spicy punch and a lasting impression on the palate.
For genuinely delicious food and a good time, head to Adda Indian Canteen.
246 E 51st St, New York, NY 10022
Out of all of the New York City Indian restaurants that I’ve visited, Amma NYC was one of my favorites. It’s in Midtown East, between 2nd and 3rd Ave. It’s a simple eatery with modest decor, but the service is exceptional and the flavors are robust. The cuisine is more Indian-fusion style, which gives you both familiar and exotic all in one.
Amma offers a tasting menu and they also have a nice dessert selection. The Chicken Tikka Masala is a classic Indian dish that gets requested often due to the juicy and tender chicken with the unique homemade spice blend. Locals also recommend trying the Delhi Chaat and the Mango Cheesecake while there.
Awadh Indian Restaurant
2588 Broadway, New York, NY 10025
Near the corner of Broadway and W 98th sits Awadh Indian Restaurant. This establishment serves classic Indian fare executed with culinary finesse. The decor is classy with a lot of wood tones that make the setting feel casual and upscale at the same time. The flavors are spicy, vibrant, and slightly acidic, which ties everything together.
The menu has a wide range of vegetables, meats, curries, kebabs, seafood, bread, and more. They also provide traditional Indian teas and a variety of wines. If you’re ever in the neighborhood, stop by and try the Garlic Naan, Paneer Tikka Masala, and the Vegetable Biryani; you won’t leave hungry or disappointed!
Bengal Tiger Indian Food, New York
58 W 56th St, New York, NY 10019
The Bengal Tiger Indian Food restaurant serves lamb, chicken, and vegetarian dishes in a stylish and modern space. It’s on the second floor of the building, so anticipate a few stairs to get to the entrance. The restaurant is in Midtown Manhattan near the Trump Tower. The vibes at the Bengal Tiger are casual and comfortable, so it’s a nice destination for a date or hanging out with friends.
The food and service here are phenomenal, and the staff is courteous and accommodating.
The prices are more than reasonable, especially considering the generous portions sizes. You can also bring your own booze!
Some of their most popular menu items are the Butternut Squash Soup, Lamb Vindaloo (really spicy), and the Gulag Jamun (honeyed dumplings, rosewater).
The Jackson Diner has two NYC locations, one in Queens, and the other in Glen Oaks. Think 80s vibes in a trendy setting, while being served by family. The menu is traditional Northern Indian cuisine with a creative spin. They also have a lunch buffet that’s outstanding with regard to the freshness of every dish.
The New York Times has mentioned the Jackson Diner on their list of the best Indian fare in NYC. The food is very aromatic and the flavors are diverse. New appetizers are constantly getting added to the menu to keep things fun and to give your tastebuds an unforgettable trip to India. The Tandoori Chicken and Rice Pudding were my favorite items on the menu.
19 W 24th St, New York, NY 10010
Located between 24th and 25th street in the Flatiron district, Junoon is a sophisticated Indian restaurant. The atmosphere is festive and ornate accents are hanging around an elegant dining area. They have an award-winning wine list, with expert servers that can give you tips on the perfect pairings.
The word Junoon means “passion” in Hindi, and you can taste the passion that goes into creating each dish. The restaurant has received the coveted Michelin star for excellence in food and service for eight years and counting. Food critics have commented on how delicious the Chicken Korma is alongside a Mumbai Margarita.
Moti Mahal Delux
1149 1st Ave, New York, NY 10065
Moti Mahal Delux is the place to go for top-notch Indian (fusion) food in NYC. The decor is classy; there are red booths, chocolate-brown leather chairs, and blond wood inside. This restaurant also hosts Sunday Brunch each weekend, with a lot of options to choose from. MMD is on the Upper East Side, on the corner of 1st and 63rd street.
Though it’s an upscale eatery, you can still feel the chill vibes, which are enhanced by the patient servers. You can celebrate, gather with family, or even have a romantic date, and the staff will ensure that your evening is unforgettable. The dish with the most recognition is the Murgh Makani (Buttered Chicken). The inventive flavors and hallmark “Mughlai” cuisine are luxurious and intense.
60 Greenwich Ave, New York, NY 10011
Over by Vincent’s Triangle, you get the visuals, the aromas, and the delightful taste of bonafide Indian eats at Rahi restaurant. The ambiance in Rahi’s is upscale and groovy. The focal points here are beautiful plate presentations and traditional Indian foods that have a modern interpretation. In addition to lunch and dinner, they serve brunch and exotic cocktails.
Rahi’s uses locally sourced ingredients for the freshest seasonal menus. All of the dishes come in good portion sizes, and the service is attentive. My favorite brunch item was the Masala Fried Chicken Sandwich with pickle and mint mayo and fried onion on a brioche bun. This restaurant is a 10/10 for sure.
There are two locations for Saravana Bhavan, one near the Flatiron Building, and the other in Upper Westside Manhattan. Saravanaa is an international chain that creates delectable South Indian vegan and vegetarian plates, such as Dosas. They have straightforward decor with clean aesthetics.
You can expect efficient service from friendly waiters. The menu is quite extensive, as well as the wine list. Many of my vegetarian friends said that this is one of the best options for those who want to enjoy Indian food and still adhere to their diet. I tried the Plantain Bajji, and the Steamed rice and lentil patties. Both were incredibly flavorful!
409 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10016
If you want to experience genuine Gujarati (Western coast of India) cuisine, try Vatan. It’s near the Empire State Building, between 28th and 29th street. Just look for the elephant! The setting is like a traditional Indian courtyard. There’s a 20-foot tall Banyan tree, the tables are hand-painted, and there are thatched roofs. The decor and hospitality make for a truly pleasant experience.
The dishes are full of interesting spices that go well together. You enjoy a little bit of everything thanks to the all-you-can-eat 3-course meal design. Reviews rave about the Chana Masala and the light and crispy Samosas. Do stop by if you can!
Related: Where to Find Amazing Pizza in NYC
Angel Indian Restaurant
7414 37th Rd, Queens, NY 11372
Angel Indian Restaurant is a company and quaint establishment in the Jackson Heights neighborhood, near the corner of 75th and Roosevelt Ave. They have outdoor seating available, and they specialize in street food staples and Northern Indian vegetarian cuisine.
The portion sizes are huge and the menu is amongst the most diverse on the list. The Lamb Shanks and the Goat Dum Biryani are two of their most notable meal options. Guests that have never tried Angel’s Indian Restaurant state that the flavors and the spices are mind-blowing. Try the Lotus Root Kofta if you go!
Bhatti Indian Grill
100 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10016
Bhatti Indian Grill waits for you on the corner of Lexington and 27th Ave in Kips Bay. This food spot offers top-of-the-line North Indian fare and regional specialties like kebabs and naan. The space is small and modest but the decor is simplistic and tasteful. They regularly have lunch specials at great prices.
Their authenticity and friendliness stand out despite being surrounded by other Indian restaurants in the district. The chef’s signature is a beautiful plate presentation. Bhatti also has an all-natural wine list, and they were the pioneers of this menu idea.
The Bullet Chili Kebab and the Lamb Galouti are top dishes, with the Chicken Masala being their signature plate.
31-31 Thomson Ave
Queens, NY 11101
Biryani Bol brings you the most intense flavors from across different regions of India. The restaurant is in Long Island City near Queens Blvd. You get excellent food and service in a chill atmosphere. The decor is simple, the food is anything but.
The star of the Biryani Bol is the Basmati Rice. Each bowl has rice, cilantro, mint, and the customer’s choice of a protein or veggies that get marinated in garlic, ginger, and other zesty spices. They top everything off with crispy fried onions; yes, please!
Your Biryani dish gets cooked the traditional way, in a clay pot, and it gets sealed all around with bread. This method keeps all of the flavors packed in. Both the Chicken and Lamb Biryani are superb choices when dining at Biryani Bol.
258 Dekalb Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11205
Dosa Royale is a trendy and unique restaurant that hones all of their efforts on showcasing one of the best traditional South Indian bites- the dosa. DR is near Long Island University, on the corner of Dekalb and Vanderbilt Ave. The brick-walled space is cozy and casual, perfect for bringing a friend or two or dining alone.
The reviews state that Dosa Royale has the best Bhaji, Masala, and Poori dosas in all of Brooklyn. This place is so good that it draws crowds easily in the evenings. In my opinion, you should make a reservation to avoid a long wait. It’s a family-friendly joint with both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages available.
09 Holly Ave No 143, Queens, NY 11355
Are you a goodie on a budget? Then the Temple Canteen in East Flushing near the Queens Botanical Garden is the place for you. This eatery probably has the most unique location of every restaurant on this list, since it’s in the basement of a Hindu Temple! Enjoy your authentic South Indian meals in a cafeteria-style setting that’s bright and cheery.
The space was previously used to make food offerings to various Hindu deities, but locals got a taste and demanded more. Now, they serve delicious food at a very low price for all to enjoy. They often have Sunday specials as well. All dosas are fresh with remarkable flavors; the Temple Canteen is a hidden gem for sure.
115 E 18th St (Between Park Ave &, Irving Pl), New York, NY 10003
GupShup is an Indian restaurant that gets its inspiration from Bombay. Using global creativity and contemporary techniques, they marry Indian flavors with other delectable spices and ingredients from other regions. The restaurant is between Park Ave and Irving Pl, near Union Square. It’s a bi-level building that sets the mood with dangling lights and soft music.
The wine and liquor options are vast, and the way they’re able to meld flavors from all over the world is nothing short of remarkable. Locals recommend the Garlic Naan, Gupshup Fried Chicken, and the Jackfruit Tacos. In my opinion, if you want to try exotic cuisine for the first time, GupShup’s fusion dishes are the best choice.
Malai Marke Indian Cuisine
318 E 6th St, New York, NY 10003
Malai Marke Indian Cuisine is special. On my trip to NYC, I heard this is one of the best places for Indian food. The restaurant is between 5th and 6th avenue near East Village. They serve traditional Indian dishes in a sleek and tastefully decorated dining area.
Everything is cooked well and the blend of spices kicks you (in a good way) with each bite. The Chicken Tikka Masala and Saag Paneer are popular, but I went for the Fish Moilee with coconut, turmeric, and ginger. They also have good beer options and polite servers that check on you regularly to ensure that you’re enjoying your meal. Thumbs up to this one!
Patiala Indian Grill
371 W 34th St, New York, NY 10001
Patiala Indian Grill is a top New York City Indian restaurant. It’s easy to locate, tucked in the Garment District near Times Square. Both Southern and Northern Indian fare is represented at this food spot. It’s modern, fun, and laid-back at Patiala’s; you can enjoy a casual date or an evening with family and friends.
They also offer daily lunch deals and to-do boxes. The servers mention that the Lamb Paneer Lunch Box gets ordered frequently, as well as the Goat Curry. This is another restaurant where it’s hard to pick what you want because so many choices seem yummy. You’re guaranteed a pleasurable experience thanks to delicious food, affordable prices, and great energy.
129 E 27th St, New York, NY 10016
Pippali is an elegant restaurant with imaginative Indian dishes as well as a full bar. The atmosphere is warm and inviting and the decor is contemporary and chic. You’ll find Pippali n Kips Bay, about ten minutes from Madison Ave. The chefs like to say that their food stands out from the rest because they believe in bodacious seasoning and unusual dishes that customers won’t forget.
They have received high praise for the seafood dishes like the Coconut Shrimp, and out-of-this-world curries. The menu is varied and the drinks are insanely good. Aside from this, the service is excellent and you can tell that the integrity of Indian culture is behind every dish, even if it has a modern twist.
36 E 20th St, New York, NY 10003
Sona is located near Gramercy Park, and it’s a trendy little restaurant that serves original Indian foods with an American touch. They have lovely desserts, drinks, and several signature cocktails. The wine list is decent, but the best part of this restaurant in my option is the daily brunch. It’s not too crowded around this time, and the service is impeccable.
I tried the Flyods Goan Fish Curry and the Crab Puri and Caviar. The flavors are hard to describe, as you can sense some familiar spices and some that are unique and bold. One thing is for sure, they were sensational nonetheless. I recommend you visit Sona if you’re traveling through NYC.
150 E 50th St, New York, NY 10022
Spice Symphony, between Lexington and 3rd Ave, gives you the perfect fusion of genuine Indian and Chinese delicacies. They focus on coastal cuisine with some of the freshest seafood in the area. The flavors are often described as sophisticated and upscale. The dining room is modern with high ceilings and skylights; excellent design for a fine-dining establishment.
You will get a personalized experience when you visit, as the servers try to help you determine what you might like based on the flavors you gravitate toward. They also tell you which wine pairs best with your entree. The Lamb Shanks and Tandoori Chicken were seasoned exceptionally well, and the overall ambiance is elegant and impressive.
The Kati Roll Company
The Kati Roll Company has four locations in Midtown West, Midtown East, Greenwich Village, and near the World Trade Center. A Kati Roll is a fiery mixture of vegetables and meat that gets rolled up inside Indian flatbread. TKRC is a quaint and cozy restaurant with stylish decor and casual vibes.
The eatery has received many awards for their signature Kati Rolls, and locals gush over the fresh ingredients like the halal meats and handmade flatbread. The servers welcome you to join them for a delicious lunch or dinner with your choice of hand-rolled bread. They’re also happy to make suggestions if you don’t know what to pick. The Unda Roll and the Aloo Masala Roll are two of the best sellers at TKRC.
1185 6th Ave, New York, NY 10036
Utsav is in the Theater District near Times Square. It’s a spacious Indian restaurant that’s popular with theater lovers by offering specials before main events. The restaurant is clean and fancy, and the atmosphere is peaceful. This is the perfect place to go if you’ve never tried Indian food before. The service is top-tier, and the food is outstanding.
The Bengali Fish Curry and the Saffron Shorba Soup are amazing. The texture of the soup is rich and velvety, while the fish was delicate and flaky. Other top dishes are the Sriracha Chili-rubbed Cauliflower and Scallops and the Chicken Zaffrin. You can’t go wrong with any dish on the menu honestly; everything is fresh and of flavor.
New York City is so lively, with plenty of options to choose from when it comes to dining. So much so that it can be a little overwhelming trying to find the best restaurants out there.
We’ve taken the guesswork out of it and narrowed it down to the best Indian restaurants in NYC for the exotic cuisine foodies searching high and low for quality eats. There’s something for everyone!
Not in the mood for Indian food, but still want some exotic flavor? Check out our favorite Thai restaurants around New York City!
Did we leave a restaurant out of this list? Make sure you leave us a comment and we’ll check it out!
Best Indian Food in NYC
- Indian Accent
- Tamarind – Tribeca
- Bengal Tiger
- Jackson Diner
- Moti Mahal Delux
- Saravanaa Bhavan
- Angel Indian Restaurant
- Bhatti Indian Grill
- Biryani Bol
- Dosa Royale
- Ganesh Temple Canteen
- Malai Marke
- Patiala Indian Grill
- Spice Symphony
- The Kati Roll Company
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