The foodie scene in the UK right now is so incredibly diverse and exciting that we wanted to pick out the very best Indian restaurants across England. These are the places that you simply cannot afford to miss, whether you live here or are just visiting.
Alongside traditional family-owned restaurants, what we’re seeing emerge is a new generation of chefs; many who are second or third generation Indian and who are really expanding and pushing the boundaries of Indian food.
From street style cafes, to high-end Michelin star cooking and everything in between, these places showcase how incredible Indian food is in England. Time to start working your way through the best Indian restaurants in England…
Best Indian Restaurants EnglandHow do these rankings work?
Prashad is one of the few truly great Indian restaurants in England that serves only vegetarian fare, so expect plenty of creative twists on traditional family recipes. There’s everything from classic North Indian street food to doughy paneer koftas.
For a real feast, order the seven-course tasting menu. You’ll get to sample the very best that Prashad has to offer.
With Chef-owner Dev Biswal recently being named the UK’s Best Asian Chef, you know you’re in for a special meal here. The Ambrette is a stylish spot that takes authentic Indian dishes and adds local flair with Kentish rapeseed oil, vegetables and foraged wild foods such as marjoram and seaweed.
Menu highlights include seafood platter with soft shell crab, tilapia, Piri piri Prawn, wild salmon caviar, pickled samphire, smoked tomato, and chilli and lime crab cake.
Chettinad is named after a small village in the Southern Tamil Nadu State of India which is known for its tasty, no-frills cuisine. The chefs grew up in Chettinad, so expect only the most authentic South Indian dishes. The freshly baked dosas stuffed with potatoes, onion, ginger and chilli is a must-order to kickstart the meal.
As for mains? You have to try their signature spicy chicken curry, which uses 23 different spice ingredients.
This fine dining spot serves top quality Indian food and is a go-to spot for many food lovers on the south coast of England. We can see why: the constantly changing and evolving menu means that Rivaaz always has a new dish to try.
The naan bread is freshly baked and fluffy, while the Gunpowder Chicken is a real winner. It’s a delicious dish of barbecued chicken breast with a fiery hot tomato and tamarind sauce.
Chef Azad Hussain and his team have really mastered the art of Indian regional cuisine at Koloshi, a sleek restaurant in Cheltenham. The interior and style of the restaurant is sleek, yet the flavourful dishes here pay homage to home-style recipes.
Dishes are bursting full of flavour and creativity, and you’ll have a hard time choosing just one. Our pick? The tender duck breast, spiced and grilled in a traditional tandoori oven.
The modern decor and down-to-earth vibes at Viceroy Tandoori are slightly deceiving, as the flavourful dishes here are anything but minimal and modern. Here, you can sample traditional Indian and Bangladeshi cuisine alongside classic curry house favourites.
Originating in Leeds, Bundobust has become a pretty big staple in other UK cities in terms of the Indian cuisine scene, namely Manchester and Liverpool. Communal tables fill the industrial-style restaurant, welcoming hungry guests in to sample Indian veggie street food and quality craft beer.
Their fried lady’s fingers coated in chickpea batter are the perfect snack.
Recently named Best Asian Restaurant in Essex, Indian Ocean is an absolute must-eat when it comes to the top Indian restaurants in England. The menu takes regional dishes from across India for one of the most fantastical Indian dining experiences in the country. Think: fresh Bengal fish cooked in sliced green chillies and spices, in a thick masala sauce.
Dishoom is one of the more intriguing restaurants on this list. The restaurant’s theme pays homage to traditional Irani cafés that were once part of daily life in Bombay. The elegant, timeless decor further adds to the unique experience that is dining at Dishoom.
Motu, which takes its name from the affectionate Hindi term for “Fat Man”, serves indulgent home style Indian food, paying homage to the British love of a classic Indian takeaway. It is a delivery-only service, which is a pretty unique concept in that you can’t pop in here to grab your takeaway like most places.
But with dishes such as black lentil dahl and Keralan curry leaf curries with prawns, it’s worth ordering in.
Open in the area since 1986, Taj Tandoori has a loyal fan base for both the quality of its food and friendly service. The menu is a tasty mix of authentic Bangladeshi dishes, and good old British Curries, as well as fusion dishes with Indian, British and even Chinese twists. Unique dishes include the Lamb Rogan Shepard’s Pie, as well as classics such as a tandoori mixed grill.
Indian street food meets craft brews with a bang at this lively restaurant in Brighton. There’s tasty snacks and traditional South Indian street food, as well as more substantial meals such as thali platters, dosas and Masala-battered fish ‘n chips.
Three locations in the city (including a cute kiosk in Brighton train station!) means you’ll always be close by to this amazing spot.
The team behind Michelin-starred Indian eateries Trishna and Gymkhana have both Motu (above) and Brigadiers, a slick Indian barbecue and whiskey restaurant inspired by the army mess bars of India. The innovative food menu focuses on different methods of Indian barbecue, utilising tandoors, charcoal grills, rotisseries, wood ovens and classic Indian smokers. Wash it down with lots and lots of whisky….
Looking for one of the best Indian restaurants in Birmingham? Asha’s takes gold in terms of Indian cuisine, and we’re not the only ones who think so. Asha’s was a Michelin-guide listed Indian restaurant in Birmingham for nearly ten consecutive years.
Their recipe for success is crafted from inventive dishes – from the savoury samosa to the tasty prawns, everything here tastes divine.
Sheffield’s oldest and most beloved Indian restaurant has been a local hotspot since 1967, and is easily among the best Indian restaurants in the country. Expect delectable starters such as chilli paneer and standout mains, including the ‘Wedding Day’ chicken. It’s a feast of tender chicken on the bone with whole spices, slow cooked for hours, and is best eaten by hand.
Mughli Charcoal Pit isn’t just one of the best Indian restaurants in Manchester, it’s one of the best Indian restaurants in the country, full stop. The delectably delicious Indian soul food here continues to wow guests who come from near and far just to sample the restaurant’s array of different curries.
For something a little different, this trendy Indian joint is a must-visit. Yukti serves modern Indian food that marries classic ingredients with more surprising twists. It’s a menu full of the best street delights from all over India using British ingredients. Think: Welsh lamb chops, or a Norfolk Farm chicken tikka.
The chefs here hope to create a style of cooking that hasn’t been seen much in England previously, making Cafe Diwali a truly authentic taste of India. It’s street food-style, but in proper, hearty portions for a real feast. Have you fill of spicy biryanis and then order the gulab jamun (hot dumplings) with vanilla ice cream for dessert.
Everything here tastes divine..
This south-east London stalwart has been open since 1985, with a menu of exciting eats from all over India. Example? Think clove-smoked lamb chops, beetroot cutlets with papaya chutney, or rabbit soweta with sweetcorn and Rajasthani spices.
Make sure to also try one of the original cocktails, some of which use home-made spirits, syrups and bitters. If you’re a true fan, you can join their Tasting Group and be on hand to offer feedback on new menu items at regular tasting sessions.
A combination of traditional techniques with some modern British twists makes The Mint Room pretty irresistible. Highlights from the starters include Rabbit Varuval (chunks of rabbit meat tossed with onion, chilli, curry leaves and ground spices), while droolworthy mains include Bengali-style pan fried red mullet.
It’s Indian fine-dining at its very best.
Dastaan is a little jewel of a restaurant, opened by two friends who worked as head chefs in London’s Michelin-starred Gymkhana. They’ve brought their endless creativity and passion to Dastaan. The result? No less than one of England’s best Indian restaurants. Unique dishes include duck sheek kebab, guinea fowl skewers and a must-order pork cheeks vindaloo.
In an unusual move, Roti Chai has two rooms, a Street Kitchen and a Dining Room, each with their own distinct menus and their own dedicated kitchen. Each is excellent, though different. The Street Kitchen serves up tapas-style small plates inspired by roadside hawkers. The Dining Room is slightly fancier, yet still comfort central: there’s butter chicken with Old Delhi style chicken thigh tikka.
This South-Indian restaurant is the place to go where you can experience the flavours of traditional Kerala cooking. It’s multi-award winning menu is all about regional specialities such as whole crab and spiced king prawns, as well as their popular ‘breakfast-style’ starter of boiled eggs in a delicious onion and tomato gravy.
Mowgli is all about how Indians eat at home and on their streets, specialising in serving up restaurant-style dishes of the kind of street and lunch food you’d find all throughout India. Each bite reveals a new burst of flavour, with highlights including their Tiffin Boxes for one with a chef’s choice “roulette” of dishes.
As for the best Indian restaurant in the country? This household name has won countless awards for its flavoursome Thali curries. The menu is packed full of amazing dishes of the subcontinent, from the back streets of Bombay to the beach shacks of Goa.
Must-eats include their Tiffin menu of selection of healthy, delicious and nutritious dishes served together in a Tiffin tin, and of course, their namesake Thalis. Choose from Goan fish curry to a vegan pumpkin and coconut stew.