Exploring Pune’s Top 8 Famous And Iconic Foods
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Pune is a vibrant and expanding city in the state of Maharashtra in India, and while it may not be the capital of the state it is indeed known as a food destination by many. Pune, as the capital of the Maratha Empire in medieval times and later as a British cantonement during colonial times, has an ecclectic food scene which is a mix of multiple food traditions from around the world.  

On the one hand, Pune’s culinary scene includes a plethora of Maharashtrian dishes. On the other, the impact of Parsi and Gujarati settlers and British rule is evident in its vibrant café and bakery culture. So, when it comes to the most famous and iconic foods of Pune, Maharashtra, there are a lot of options people can pick from. From spicy Maharashtrian street foods to delicious bakery products, Pune has a lot of iconic dishes to offer those willing to embark on a food journey while in the city. 

It must be mentioned here that while most of Pune’s famous and iconic dishes are available all year around, there are some that are specific to seasons and availability of ingredients like fresh mangoes. If you are visiting Pune, here are some of the most famous and iconic dishes to indulge in while in the city. 

Video Credit: YouTube/Chef Ranveer Brar

Misal Pav 

This street food from Pune is now so famous that even international food guides recognise it as one of the best this nation has to offer, and not just Maharashtra. Misal Pav is basically a combination of two elements, a spicy gravy or Misal loaded with sprouted moong beans, and the fresh, butter-toasted Pav bread served with it. Most iconic food vendors like Katakirr and Bhadait in Pune pair this dish with a variety of toppings like chopped onions, farsaan and even cheese. 

Mango Mastani 

Named after the famous Mastani, the warrior princess who won the heart of Peshwa Bajirao II, the great Maratha ruler, Mango Mastani is primarily a summer drink. Made with fresh mangoes blended with milk and topped with mango ice cream, fruits and nuts, this drink can also be called a super-loaded milkshake. There are a number of places across Pune for the best Mango Mastani that you can check out during the summer months. 

Shrewsbury Biscuit 

With their signature round and pale appearance, and melt-in-the-mouth, buttery mouthfeel, Shrewsbury Biscuits are among the most famous and iconic Pune dishes. Originating in England, Shrewsbury Biscuits made their way to Pune during the British colonial times and were quickly picked up as a staple by century-old Parsi bakeries in the city. When in Pune, tasting Shrewsbury Biscuits from Kayani Bakery is a must. 

Vada Pav 

You might argue that Mumbai is equally well known for its Vada Pav, but the fact is that every street-side vendor in Pune makes delicious plates of the dish too. What makes Puneri Vada Pav stand out is the fact that the condiments that go along with the desi burger made of a potato fritter and pav bread are always on point. The spicy, coarse chutney and the chillies on the side make this one a must-have dish while in Pune. 

Mutton Rassa 

A staple across the state of Maharashtra, Mutton Rassa personifies the Maharashtrian love for spicy mutton curries. The mutton chunks are perfectly slow cooked to create a rich, thin and delicious gravy which is predominantly spicy because of the use of heavy spices and red chilli powder. Deep red in colour, mutton rassa is enjoyed with jowar or bajra bhakris across eateries and restaurants in Pune. In most places, extra rassa or gravy is also served on the side for those who want to savour it even more. 


Thanks to the popularity of Gujarati delicacies in Pune, Bhakarwadi is quite the staple and iconic snack this city is known for. For those unaware, Bhakarwadi is a deep-fried snack that resembles pinwheels. A wheat and gram flour dough is stuffed with a spicy mix of powdered spices, gram flour, coconuts and even crushed peanuts. The dough is then rolled up, cut into small pieces, deep-fried and served as a snack. Don’t miss out on the Bhakarwadi at Chitale Bandhu Mithaiwale while in Pune. 

Video Credit: YouTube/Chef Ranveer Brar

Keema Pav 

A popular snack served at all Parsi and Irani cafes across Pune, Keema Pav is made of two essential elements. First, there is the Keema, which is made of minced meat, onions and plenty of spices. On the side is a loaf of fresh Pav bread to scoop up the Keema with. Together, Keema Pav makes for a great option for a filling, quick and delicious meal when in Pune. Visit any Parsi or Irani café in Pune for the best plates of this dish. 

Pithla Bhakri 

A simple, vegan dish of besan or gram flour cooked with kokum extract, asafoetida, green chillies, curry leaves and mild spices called Pithla is paired with freshly made Bhakris or flatbreads to create this incredibly famous dish from Pune. Pithla Bhakri is a combination that works well for every meal and is quite simple yet flavoursome as a dish. The only thing that often changes is the fact that the Bhakris are made with jowar flour in summers and bajra flour in winters.