From Garam Chai to Jalebi Bai: Bollywood Songs Inspired by Food

If the sight of food makes you hungry, these Bollywood melodies will stoke your hunger even further.

3 min read

From spicy Indian curries to succulent meats, the Indian landscape and spices have influenced food so much that even Bollywood found it difficult to stay away.

Bollywood is not only about the latka jhatkas and the item numbers, it is also about the songs that send you on a gastronomical journey and make you salivate for some lip-smacking delights.

If the sight of food makes you hungry, these Bollywood melodies will stoke your hunger even further. Here’s a little peek into some famous Bollywood songs that will instantly make you hungry!


1. Samose Mein Aloo

Movie: Mr & Mrs. Khiladi

This Akshay Kumar, Juhi Chawla starrer is sure to make your mouth water. The actor alludes to the samosa while confessing his love for the actress. He says that he would love her as long as the samosas are stuffed with potato, thus proving his undying love for her.

(FYI, samosa is the king of street food and is available at almost any roadside stall or bakery. It is a popular evening snack had with tea or served as an offering to guests.)

You are sure to enjoy this naughty hilarious number while you savour a samosa.

2. Main Toh Raste Se Ja Raha Tha.. Bhel Puri Kha Raha Tha

Movie: Coolie No. 1

This track from Coolie No.1 featuring the dhinchak jodi of Karishma Kapoor and Govinda was a hit in the 90s. Govinda is seen dancing in his incorrigible yellow pants and infusing comic elements with his dance steps. Through this song, Govinda tells Karishma that while he was savouring the bhel puri and having a gala time with his girlfriend, Karishma was complaining of the bhelpuri being too chilli. Er, okay. Thanks much.

This effervescent song, still so popular, is sure to tickle your taste buds!


3. Daawat-e-Ishq (Title Track)

Movie: Daawat-e-Ishq

This Aditya Kapoor, Parineeti Chopra starrer is a celebration of food and love. The song takes you through the streets of Lucknow showcasing rich culinary delights like the biryani, kebabs, shahi tukda and the jalebis. If you are a foodie, you are sure to love it because throughout the song you are constantly eating! In short? Its a daawat. This song is exciting and flavourful and promises you a gastronomic musical treat.


4. Garam Chai ki Pyali ho

Movie: Har Dil Jo Pyaar Karega

This bhaijaan starrer with vocals by Anu Malik was a high voltage pairing back in the 90s. The cool charismatic Salman Khan is shown slurping a cup of piping hot tea and then showing off his six-pack, along with a bunch of girls wearing beachwear!

In this deep and profound song he wishes he had a girl who was as ‘piping’ hot as the ‘garam chai ki pyaali’. Chai is the favourite beverage of Indians – which probably explains why this song took off like it did.

We are sure there are a lot of bachelors out there, like our Sallu Bhai, who are crooning to this one.


5. Nimbooda Nimbooda

Movie: Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam

The beautiful Miss World, Aishwarya Rai, looks stunning in this song and showcases a splendid dance performance. The song has a ‘hidden’ meaning and is more like a metaphor. Her lover cannot make it for the wedding, so she teases him saying that someone might like her dance performance and may want to marry her. Through her song, therefore, she requests her lover to get her small, round lemons from the green fields which will help ward off ‘buri nazar’. This foot tapping pacy song from an otherwise slow-paced movie, is a dancer’s delight!


6. Naam Jalebi Bai

Movie: Double Dhamaal

This fun, catchy song has the sultry Mallika Sherawat, displaying some great dance moves. In this song she is being teased by her lovers who are inquisitive to know her name and her whereabouts. It is then that she discloses her name: Jalebi Bai.

(Jalebi is a popular Indian sweet that forms a part of many festivals and celebrations like Holi, weddings, get togethers, etc. It is popularly eaten with rabri which helps balance the sweetness of the jalebi.)

Proven after-effects of the song? You’ll be heading to your local sweet shop right after.


From garam chai to jalebis, samosas to nimboos, Bollywood’s done it all – gone the entire culinary hog. They say, you need three things for a fulfilled life: good friends, good food and a good song, and Bollywood’s managed to put them all together!


(A freelance food blogger, Pranjali Bhonde Pethe aims at getting people and their favourite food closer through her blog moipalate. Email her at or follow her on @moipalate.)

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