Gastronomy & Eating Out in Goa, India (Best Goan Dishes + Restaurants)

Last Updated on January 3, 2022

Here you can read our guide on gastronomy and eating out in Goa, India, best Goan dishes and restaurants you should try. Goa is located in the west of India and is the country’s smallest state but also its secret weapon when it comes to tourism. Known for its high quality of life, Goa is rich in many senses of the word. It boasts a large number of visitors each year; travelers who are keen on exploring its beaches, temples and wonderful architecture.

Cola beach, Goa, India

A trip to Goa is like stepping into another country, you’ll love the area’s wild flowers and many beautiful trees. But the best part about Goa is by far the food. As far away from an Indian takeaway as you can imagine, the flavors you can discover in Goa, and the rest of India, are astonishing.

What food can you expect in Goa?

Regional foods are very popular in Goa and you’ll see a lot of chicken, lamb, seafood, rice, spices and coconut milk. Lovers of seafood will enjoy the fish served up and down the area.

As Goa was colonized by the Portuguese for 400 hundred years, there’s a big Mediterranean influence. There’s also a massive Hindu influence as this is also where Goa’s origins are firmly rooted.

Indian colorful spices at Anjuna flea market in Goa, India
Indian colorful spices at Anjuna flea market in Goa, India

What are the best Goan dishes?


This is a Goan classic and is a mild curry sauce served with fish (or prawns), a lot of herbs and rice. Really flavorsome, most restaurants will offer their own version of this national dish.

Udid methi

Quite a sour version of the classic fish curry, usually a fish like mackerel will be used to soak up the curry flavors. The vegetarian version will involve mango.


This is a popular side dish consisting of dried fish, lashings of coconut and plenty of chargrilled onions.


Pork Vindaloo

Probably Goa’s most memorable dish, this masala is a brilliant red, made from chilies, ginger, garlic and cumin. The pork is marinated until it’s a fiery red and then cooked – delicious.


A dessert which will leave your taste buds wanting more! It’s prepared using coconut milk, eggs, butter and jaggery, a traditional sweetener made from molasses. This is key to the dessert’s flavor.

Goan Nevri

Known as ‘karanji’, these are sweet balls made of flour stuffed with coconut, sugar, cardamom and almonds.

Where are the best restaurants?

There are many amazing restaurants and you’ll be stuck for choice. Each one offers something a little bit different and the food is high quality and very fresh as standard across the region. Below our pick of top three.

Sol Bar & Bistro, Candolim

Known in the area for its global flavors, this restaurant has a bistro feel, serving classic Goan food like herb grilled chicken and a plethora of curries. There’s often live music and this would be a great place for couples to dine – it’s cosy and secluded.

Ritz Classic, Panaji

For a true taste of Goa, head here. You’ll find local families eating out and enjoying traditional Thali fare. Offering everything from squid masala to deep fried crab, this is great value for money.

The Upper House, Panaji

Situated opposite the beautiful Garcia de Orta Gardens, this restaurant is a constant hub of activity. Expect big Goan flavours set beneath an incredible setting. Serving mainly Goan food, book to avoid disappointment.