While Tunday’s and Sakhawat are the better-known places for kababs in Lucknow, there are more places in Old Lucknow that are absolutely unmissable for their kababs!
1. BUDDHU KABABI
Way back in 1955, two brothers Buddhu and Riyasat started a kebab shop in Nakhas. Only a few years into the business, the siblings parted ways. While the younger brother disappeared into oblivion, the older one worked perfected his recipe and started a humble shop, Buddhu. Sixy-two years later, he has built itself quite a reputation but even now, you will still not be able to locate him on Google Maps!
Buddhu does only Boti and Galawati kababs, and his clientele swears by the taste and quality of the Galawati kebabs. Eaten best with a paratha, chutney and onion salad, the kebabs are beautifully moist and make you momentarily forget the chaos on the busy road, before mystically disappearing in your mouth and leaving a wonderful after-taste on your palate. The kebabs are also little spicier than the ones available elsewhere.
Not much can be said about the ambience of the shop; it remains archaic and it seems nothing has changed in the last few years. The shop, however, does have a couple of benches and table for you to sit and enjoy the meal. Alternatively, you could pack yourself a kabab-paratha roll for the road or have it in the comfort of your own home. Whatever it is that you prefer, missing out on this kebab joint would really be ‘buddhu’ of you!
Price: Rs. 5/kabab or Rs. 20/plate of 5 kababs
Timings: 10 am to 11 pm
Location: Phoolwali Masjid, Opp. Bank of Baroda, Turiyaganj, Lucknow
Started by Mohd. Mubeen in 1973, Mubeen’s is a popular stop for people visiting Chowk for authentic Mughlai food. Mubeen’s sells everything ranging from Biryani (₹100 for a place) to all types of Kormas (₹30 onwards) and Kababs (₹40 onwards). However, it is his Pasanda kababs and Kulcha (₹10), that he is really famous for.
Mubeen introduced many new items made of chicken like the Chicken Pasanda , Chicken Barea , Handi Chicken, and Chicken Nihari, apparently to make up for shortage of beef sometime back. However, the famous Pasanda Kebabs (made of beef). The kebabs are as juicy as ever with the crispy exterior. There’s a lingering smokiness to the kebabs and the sprinkled chat masala adds to the flavour. The shop remains open from 8am to 12pm on all the days. You can sit and eat there or get it packed.
Price: Rs. 50/plate
Timings: 8 am to 12 midnight
Location: Akbari Gate, Chowk, Lucknow
3. KAREEM KABABI
Lucknow’s favourite food, kebabs, can be eaten with a variety of Indian breads. Gelawati kebabs are best enjoyed with the sheermal, majlisi kebabs with the ulta tawa parathas and seekh and kakori kebabs need only chutney as an accomplice. However, the kebabs at Kareem Kababi have a totally different partner in crime – a burger bread!
Started over 100 years ago by a Haji Abdul Kareem, this shop has almost exclusively been making kababs. Legend has it that Haji started small with little money, big dreams and a recipe that left people wanting more. Hard work and determination helped him grow his business but he was always honest and sincere to his patrons. On days he’d suspect his employees had overcharged his customers, he would rectify their mistake the following day by providing all customers with extra portion of kebabs, on the house.
The restaurant is now known for its Kebab in a Burger. Deliciously moist Gelawati kababs tucked between soft and freshly baked burger buns. The kebab itself is decently sized, and the protein and spices are in a perfect blend. Other options available are sheermal roll, paratha roll and chapati.
Though the menu isn’t extravagant, the restaurant does make boti kebabs and the latest addition to their teeny list, is the mutton and chicken biryani. There is seating available for those who fancy it and though not much can be spoken about the ambience, there sure is an acceptable amount of hygiene and cleanliness.
Price: Rs. 35/-
Timings: 12 Noon to 11 pm
Location: HA Rajjak Complex, Opp. Masjid, Gangaprasad Marg, Aminabad