What Are the Staple Foods in India?

Jeremy Woodhouse/Photolibrary/Getty Images

Although staples in the Indian diet vary by region, they usually include potatoes, rice, roti, millet, flour and lentils as staples. Indian cuisine consists of these foods along with a number of accompaniments.

In India, there are a lot of different foods combined with the basic staples. Onions, garlic and other vegetables are popular additions to things like rice and millet.

Indian food is often made with a wide variety of spices like chili pepper, turmeric, ginger and cumin. Although meat and dairy are not considered staples in the Indian diet, they are important additions to many dishes. Indian food is often cooked in vegetable oil, mustard oil, or coconut oil, and chicken and mutton are the most popular meats in the country.

In certain areas of the country like the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, fruits and raw fish have long been staples of the Indian diet. People in Chhattisgarh eat whatever they can find like mushrooms and squirrels, and those people living in Goan prefer to eat fish and rice.Staples in the diet of those living in Arunachal Pradesh include leafy vegetables, meat, fish and rice.

No matter the area, most people rely on the same basic staples of Indian cuisine. People in different areas may prepare the food differently, but these basic foods are found throughout the entire country.