Delicious and Colorful Holi Food: Exploring the Traditional Dishes of the Festival

Delicious and Colorful Holi Food

Famously known as the festival of colours, Holi is imminent and we all are excited to celebrate it with fun and exaltation. But without sweets and snacks, each celebration appears to be monotonous. If you want to lit your festival then do try out these drool-worthy recipes.

Holi is one of the most popular festivals in India. It is widely celebrated in North India. On the occasion of Holi, everyone is seen immersed in different colours. Children start preparation a few days before the festival. From filling balloons with water to stuffing pockets with hues, children seem to be enthusiastic to make this celebration remarkable. Along with children, elders also celebrate Holi with great pomp. India is a land of tradition and before celebrating every festival, we love to take the benediction of our elders. On the day of Holi, we take the blessings of our elders by applying tilak.

Holi symbolizes the triumph of good over evil. It is believed that Holika who was the sister of the demon Hiranayakashyap wanted to kill Prahalad but was consumed by fire. To mark the victory of good, Holika is burnt a day before celebrating Holi.

Do you want to add zeal to your festival? Then what are you waiting for, adorn your meal with these delicious Holi recipes.

1. Gujiya

When it comes to celebrating Holi, the first snack that comes to our mind is Gujiya. Without Gujiya, Holi seems to be incomplete. Gujiya is the most famous Holi snack and is prepared with maida or flour. The recipe for Gujiya is easy and simple. All you need to do is knead a soft flour dough and make a sumptuous stuffing for the Gujiya. The Gujiya can be stuffed with khoya, coconut flakes, nuts, and cashews. The gujiya is then fried in the oil and mixed in sugar syrup.

Holi Special recipe

2. Kanda Bhajiya

Everyone loves to devour sweets with a crispy snack and bhajiya is every household’s favourite snack. Kanka (Onion) bhajiya is a delectable and easy-to-make Holi snack. Take gram flour and make a soft batter. Then add herbs such as cumin, fenugreek, and salt to taste. Leave the batter aside and chop the onion. Add chopped onions to the batter and deep-fried in oil. The scrumptious Kanda bhajiya is ready.

Holi Special recipe

3. Paneer Pakora

Paneer Pakora is one of the popular snacks in India. It hardly takes 20 minutes to prepare this tasty holi snack. The recipe for paneer pakora is simple and easy. Take small cubes of paneer, dip them in the fermented batter, and deep fry them in the oil. Serve your guests these crispy paneer pakoras.

Holi Special recipe

4. Kachori

Kachori is nothing but small dumplings that are commonly stuffed with tempered potatoes and peas. If you do not have plenty of time to prepare an hour-long recipe then you can resort to Kachori. Kachori hardly takes 20 minutes to get ready. Take all-purpose flour and knead it tightly. Prepare potato stuffing and mix it with hot and tangy spices. Deep fry the kachori in hot oil and munch on it.

Holi Special recipe

5. Gulab Jamun

Holi is a festival of unity and integrity and we all celebrate it with our family and friends. If guests come to the house then serve them this mouth-watering sweet. Gulab Jamun is usually made with khoya and fried in ghee or oil.

Holi Special recipe

6. Thandai

The festival of hues is incomplete without this delectable drink. Thandai is liked by people of all age groups and they love to devour this traditional drink. Thandai as the name suggests is a cold drink that is made using milk and pistachio. Before preparing thandai, soak the nuts and seeds in warm water. Take frosty milk and add soaked nuts, and garnish the thandai with chopped cashews and nuts.

7. Dahi Bhalla

Dahi Bhalle is a combination of curd and soaked urad dal. This heavenly combination is a popular snack in North India. Dahi Bhalla is usually served with tamarind chutney. Tamarind chutney enhances the taste of Dahi Bhalla and makes them more captivating. The recipe for Dahi Bhalla is simple yet easy. All you need is a batter of soaked urad dal. Mix this batter with herbs and tangy spices and deep fry in oil. Savour this tasty recipe and enjoy your Holi celebration.

8. Papdi Chaat

Papdi Chaat is a tangy and crunchy snack made of fried dough wafers (papdi) topped with boiled potatoes, chickpeas, tamarind chutney, mint chutney, yoghurt, and spices. It is a popular street food during Holi and is loved for its unique combination of flavours and textures.

9. Malpua

Malpua is a sweet pancake made of flour, milk, and sugar, and is deep-fried and dipped in sugar syrup. It is often served with rabri (sweet condensed milk) and is a popular dessert during Holi.

10. Aloo Tikki

Aloo Tikki is a savoury snack made of mashed potatoes and spices, shaped into patties and deep-fried. It is often served with chutney and is a popular street food during Holi.

11. Bhang Pakora

Bhang Pakora is a popular snack made with leaves of the cannabis plant, dipped in a spicy batter and deep-fried. It is a traditional Holi food that is consumed in certain parts of India for its psychoactive effects.

12. Mathri

Mathri is a savoury snack that is made with flour, spices, and ghee (clarified butter). It is a crispy and crunchy snack that is perfect for munching on during Holi celebrations.

13. Puran Poli

Puran Poli is a sweet flatbread that is made with lentils, jaggery (unrefined cane sugar), and spices. It is a traditional dish that is prepared during Holi and is often served with ghee (clarified butter) or yoghurt. This is the famous holi food among Marathi people.

14. Dal Kachori

Dal Kachori is a popular snack in North India and is often served during Holi. It is made with a crispy pastry shell filled with a spicy lentil mixture and is best served hot with chutney.

15. Ras Malai

Ras Malai is a popular dessert that is made with flattened balls of chenna (cottage cheese) soaked in sweetened milk syrup. It is a rich and indulgent dessert that is perfect for the festive occasion.

16. Holi Pizza

Another popular modern Holi food is the Holi pizza. This dish is made with a colourful vegetable topping on a traditional pizza base, representing the colours of the festival. Holi-themed cocktails and mocktails are also gaining popularity among partygoers who want to celebrate the festival in a modern way.

Overall, Holi food is an essential part of the festival and has a deep cultural significance. The traditional dishes have been passed down through generations, and many families have their unique recipes that have been perfected over time. Modern versions of Holi food have added a new twist to the festival, making it even more enjoyable for everyone. Whether you prefer traditional or modern Holi food, the festive season is an excellent opportunity to indulge in some delicious treats and celebrate the joyous occasion with family and friends.

Here are some interesting facts about Holi food

1. The tradition of consuming bhang during Holi dates back to ancient Hindu texts, where Lord Shiva is said to have consumed the cannabis plant during the festival. This the famous holi food.

2. Gujiya, a popular Holi sweet, is said to have originated in Rajasthan and was introduced during the Mughal era.

3. Thandai, a traditional Holi drink, is made with a mixture of milk, almonds, fennel seeds, and spices. It is believed to have originated in Uttar Pradesh.

4. Puran Poli, a sweet flatbread made with lentils, jaggery, and spices, is believed to have originated in Maharashtra and is a popular Holi dish in the state.

5. Mathri, a savoury snack made with flour, spices, and ghee, is a popular Holi food in North India and is often paired with other snacks like namak para and papdi.

6. In South India, a similar festival called Holi Purnima is celebrated with a different set of dishes. One of the traditional dishes is the Holige, a sweet flatbread made with lentils, jaggery, and coconut.

7. The use of natural food dyes during Holi celebrations has become increasingly popular in recent years as people are becoming more health-conscious. Beetroot, spinach, and turmeric are some of the natural food dyes used to colour Holi sweets and drinks.

8. In some parts of India, particularly in rural areas, Holi celebrations include communal feasts where people come together to share food and exchange greetings.

Holi food is an essential part of the festival, and the traditional dishes and drinks have a deep cultural significance. These holi food are a testament to the rich and diverse culinary heritage of India and are an excellent way to celebrate a joyous occasion with family and friends.

Here’s a sample Holi food menu for the whole day

Breakfast: Aloo puri with lassi

Aloo puri is a popular breakfast dish made with fried bread and spiced potatoes.

Lassi is a yoghurt-based drink that is traditionally flavoured with cardamom and sugar.

Mid-morning snack: Namak para and thandai

Namak para is a savoury snack made with flour, spices, and ghee.

Thandai is a traditional Holi drink made with a mixture of milk, almonds, fennel seeds, and spices.

Lunch: Bhang ki pakodi, puran poli, and raita

Bhang ki pakodi is a savoury snack made with cannabis leaves and spices.

Puran poli is a sweet flatbread made with lentils, jaggery, and spices.

Raita is a yoghurt-based side dish that is often flavored with spices and vegetables.

Afternoon snack: Gujiya and masala chai

Gujiya is a popular Holi sweet made with a flaky pastry shell filled with sweetened khoya, nuts, and spices.

Masala chai is a spiced tea that is often flavored with ginger, cardamom, and cinnamon.

Dinner: Holi pizza and thandai

Holi pizza is a modern take on traditional pizza, made with a colourful vegetable topping to represent the colours of the festival.

Thandai is a traditional Holi drink made with a mixture of milk, almonds, fennel seeds, and spices.

Dessert: Kulfi and gajar ka halwa

Kulfi is a traditional Indian ice cream that is often flavored with cardamom, saffron, and nuts.

Gajar ka halwa is a sweet dessert made with grated carrots, milk, sugar, and nuts.

This is just a sample menu, and different regions and households may have their own unique Holi food traditions. However, the menu above includes some popular Holi dishes that are commonly enjoyed throughout India during the festival.


Holi offers a variety of delicious and traditional food items that are an essential part of the festivities. From sweet to savoury, there is something for everyone to enjoy during this joyous occasion.

Munch on these lip-smacking recipes and celebrate your Holi with full enthusiasm and zeal.


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  • Vivek Agarwal

    Vivek Agarwal is the co founder & COO of The Wanderer India & NV Rise an internet based company. Passionate about helping people through social work, he empathizes with worldly struggles through his poetry. A passionate digital marketer who loves to plan and manage marketing strategies to build a brand’s visibility online.

    https://thewandererindia.com/ [email protected] Agarwal Vivek