Haleem in Hyderabad: History, Types, and 5 Must-Visit Spots
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A trip to Hyderabad would be incomplete without trying the delicious and heavenly Haleem, a dish known for its rich taste and even richer history. Found at almost every restaurant and street-stalls during Ramadan, Haleem is a savoury porridge of wheat, mutton, and a plethora of spices. During this month, one can find Haleem being prepared and served in abundance at numerous eateries, stalls, and homes. It's considered a traditional iftar dish. 

Hyderabad's special haleem is known for its rich and hearty texture. It's a slow-cooked dish made from a combination of wheat, barley, meat, and many flavourful and aromatic spices. What makes it special and iconic is its long cooking process, which can take several hours. However, the hard work of hours results in bringing a thick and rich porridge-like consistency. Its slow cooking allows the flavors of the spices and meat to meld together, creating a harmonious blend of tastes. Commonly used spices include cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, ginger, garlic, and green chilies. This combination gives Hyderabad's Haleem its distinctive and delicious flavor profile.

Traditionally made on “bhattis”, haleem is often served with a dash of ghee and garnished with a variety of toppings and is best enjoyed piping hot. It is often served with naan or roti, making it a complete and satisfying meal. Many people also eat it with a squeeze of fresh lime juice.

History Of Haleem

Haleem is originally an Arabic dish made with whole pulses, meat, ghee, wheat, and rice. Legends say that Haleem came to Hyderabad via Iran and Afghanistan during the Mughal period. As the years passed, several changes were made to the dish and it evolved over time. Soon, it became an inevitable part of Hyderabad’s rich culinary history. What makes Hyderabadi Haleem different and special is the usage of local ingredients and spices. As per experts, haleem’s first recipe which was earlier called ‘harees’ finds its mention in the texts dating to the 10th century. 

Types Of Haleem

Hyderabadi Haleem is a beloved dish that has various regional and seasonal variations. While the traditional form of Haleem is made with wheat, barley, meat, and spices, different Haleem types are found in Hyderabad.

Mutton Haleem

The most common and traditional Hyderabadi Haleem is made using mutton. It's made with slow-cooked wheat, barley, and mutton, along with a blend of spices. The mutton adds a rich and meaty flavor to the dish.

Chicken Haleem

Those who prefer poultry over red meat often go for chicken haleem. In this recipe, mutton is replaced with chicken and has a milder flavor compared to mutton Haleem. Spices and other ingredients remain the same in this haleem.

Veg Haleem

For vegetarians, there are vegetable and vegan Haleem options available. These versions typically replace the meat with vegetables, lentils, paneer, or plant-based protein sources like soy chunks. These haleems have a creamy texture and rich in flavours.

5 Must-Visit Spots To Have Haleem In Hyderabad

Subhan Bakery

Best known for their Osmania biscuits, one can also find delicious and smooth haleem here. Situated at Nampally market, this place serves haleem made with utmost love and patience. 

Hotel Nayab  

Located at Nayapul Road, Hotel Nayab is known for serving the best Hyderabadi Haleem in the region. The haleem served here has a rich texture. One can also have their special keema, khichda, and paya.


Sarvi is a popular chain of restaurants in the city and has been serving Hyderabadi Haleem for years. They serve haleem with perfect texture, the right balance of spices, and some variations too.

Shah Ghouse

The next best place to have Hyderabadi Haleem in the city is the Shah Ghouse restaurant. The haleem served is cooked to perfection with a perfect blend of flavourful and aromatic. 

Café 555

Cafe 555 is a popular restaurant known for serving the Hyderabadi Haleem with Chicken 65 and boiled eggs. Apart from the classic, their Irani mutton haleem is also worth a try.