Food items you need to try in Islamabad

By Momina Aftab

The federal capital of Pakistan may not be as famous for its food as it is for its mesmerizing beauty and clean air but Islamabad does have some kickass restaurants serving mouthwatering dishes to satiate the foodie in you. Here’s what you MUST try next time you are in the city:

Chelo Kebab from Omar Khayyam

Omar Khayyam’s Chelo Kebab is one of the most popular dishes of the city. It is basically lamb meat served with buttered and salted rice. The tenderness of the meat is attributed to the marination of the meat 8 hours prior to cooking. The aroma is enhanced due to addition of saffron in the rice.

Photo courtesy: BetterButter

Roll Paratha from Gulshan F10

There are many roadside stalls in various sectors of Islamabad serving mouthwatering shawarmas and roll parathas but the best and most popular one is easily the one being served at Gulshan Roll Inn & Fried Chicken, F10.

Thin Crust Pizza from Pizza Originale

Their menu is very diverse unlike other pizza places and they serve the best, crispiest and yummiest thin crust pizza in town.

Chicken Cheese Paratha from Mantu Gul Kitchen

I know a chicken cheese paratha can be found in any corner of any city but Mantu Gul Kitchen, located next to Pak China Friendship Center, serves kickass chicken cheese parathas with the karak-est chaaye that you simply can’t miss out on. And while you are at it, don’t forget to try their Mantus.

Apple Pie from Chaaye Khana

Simple, scrumptious with the perfect amount of sugar – Chaaye Khana’s apple pie is to die for. They also serve free tea to women on Tuesdays, so, keep that in mind ladies. Other than that they have a plenty of great breakfast options to choose from.

Photo courtesy: Chaaye Khan website

Halwa Poori from Chatta’s

Chatta’s is known and loved for its authentic desi breakfast by all residents of the capital. Their Halwa Poori paired with a good ol’ sweet Lassi will rejuvenate your insides and prepare you for a long day of touring.  

Photo courtesy: Foodnerd.pk

Cheesecake from Burning Brownie

Many modern eateries in Islamabad are known for their cheesecake but the most amazing cheesecake is without a doubt served by Burning Brownie. It’s so light for a cheesecake, you are bound to eat atleast two slices in one sitting.

Chicken/Beef Karahi from Butt Karahi F8

There are a few things in life that can never go wrong and a Butt Karahi is one of them. With their outdoor setup and Islamabad’s characteristic evening weather, it would be a shame to miss out on an authentic karahi experience while you are in the city.

Panini from Juicy Gossip

Photo courtesy: Juicy Gossip

Over the years, Juicy Gossip has carved a niche for itself that no other restaurant in Islamabad has been able to do so with its strict no soda policy and focus on healthy food. This quaint, cozy little cafe has great sandwich options with their Panini being an absolute favorite among the masses for many years now. Their signature salad with chicken, fruits and nuts is really good. But the best item on their menu is their fresh juices that are practically free of all kinds of additives and sugary syrups.