Love Indian food? Here are the top 8 Indian restaurants in Charlotte.
#1 Indian Restaurant in Charlotte
If you’re looking for modern, upscale Indian cuisine, Copper is the place to go. They offer plenty of classic dishes as well as more unique, contemporary plates inspired by traditional Indian flavors. Copper has won numerous awards, including being named “Best Indian” by Agenda readers in 2018.
Neighborhood: Dilworth, 311 East Boulevard
Cost: $$ – $$$
Must-order menu items: Start with a round of potli samosas. For your main, you can’t beat the murgh tikka masala (that sauce though) but if you want to splurge/try something different, go with the kashmiri chili-fennel roasted lamb chops.
Dine in or takeout: Definitely dine in. Located in a turn-of-the-century Dilworth bungalow, Copper has an upscale but intimate atmosphere. Every dish is plated beautifully and you can’t take the delicious craft cocktails to go.
Located in the popular Ballantyne Village shopping center, The Blue Taj is a Charlotte fave. Their menu is a nice mix of traditional and modern Indian cuisine. On weekdays they offer an express lunch that gets you an entree, soup or salad, naan and rice for around $11. It’s pretty incredible.
Must-order menu items: Kick things off with a cup of the tomato-coconut bisque. The masala-chili cauliflower florets appetizer is also outstanding. Next, go with the Southern Indian Style aromatic curry.
Dine in or takeout: Dine in. You’ll really enjoy the ultra-cool, modern vibe and you can sip cocktails at the Bubble Bar.
Maharani has been a Charlotte staple since it opened back in 2002. The owner and his wife are New Delhi natives and they pride themselves on their menu filled with traditional Indian cuisine. The name ‘Maharani’ actually means ‘Queen’, perfect for the Queen City.
Neighborhood: Cherry, 901 South Kings Dr.
Must-order menu items: Two words: Butter chicken. Order it with a side of garlic naan. If you’re a vegetarian, check out their vegetable biryani.
Dine in or takeout: Depends on your mood, but likely takeout. They have ample seating and a nice atmosphere but takeout is always an option if you’re feeling like a homebody.
Located in the small but bustling community of Ayrsley, Saffron consistently serves up delicious, innovative Indian cuisine. Chef and co-owner Sunil Handa first learned how to cook in his mother’s kitchen, went on to work as a chef in numerous 5-star hotels in New Delhi and, since 2008, he’s been gracing the QC with his tantalizing flavors from India.
Must-order menu items: No question, order the Maharaja dinner for two. For $49.99, you get a chicken malai kebab appetizer, tandoori chicken and lamb boti kebabs, two curried entrees, naan, side dish of the vegetable of the day, rice AND dessert.
Dine in or takeout: If the weather is nice, dine on Saffron’s patio. It’s a great spot to enjoy a bottle of wine with dinner.
Recently opened, Tandur Indian Kitchen has been making waves since it joined the Charlotte restaurant scene. Here, diners can enjoy classic Indian fare with a contemporary twist. The modern, fast-casual atmosphere makes it approachable for Indian food newbies and we really love their open-style kitchen.
Must-order menu items: Their top seller is the tikka masala sauce, which you can pair with the protein of your choice. The vindaloo is another tasty sauce option but very spicy — you’ve been warned. The spiced okra fries make a great appetizer.
Dine in or takeout: This is a great little dine-in spot. You can sit out on the patio or grab a table inside with a good view of their exposed clay oven.
Located in a strip mall off South Boulevard, Jaipur is one of those hole-in-wall, hidden gem type spots. They specialize in serving no-frills traditional, authentic Indian cuisine. On weekdays, they offer $7 lunch takeout deals. On weekends, they have both a lunch and dinner buffet.
Neighborhood: Closeburn-Glenkirk, 5909 South Blvd.
Must-order menu items: Start with the vegetable or lamb samosas. Then go with one of the madras curries. Grab an order of the mixed naan on the side; it’s stuffed with fresh onion, garlic, green chili and cilantro.
Dine in or takeout: Takeout. Jaipur offers delivery for $3 within a 5-mile radius, which means you could be enjoying warm naan and tandoori chicken from the comfort of your couch.
This University City spot is a takeout/delivery haven for locals. They offer a huge menu with both Northern and Southern Indian cuisine as well as Indo-Chinese dishes. If you’re looking for a solid, no-fuss Indian place, Passage to India won’t disappoint.
Neighborhood: University City
Must-order menu items: The ellam calamari and onion bhaji are both standout appetizers. If you want a veggie entree, go with the vegetable jalfrezi. If you’re looking for meat, try the lamb biryani. Get the gulab jamun for dessert (fried cheese balls soaked in sugary syrup).
Dine in or takeout: Takeout. This is a solid takeout spot and they even offer delivery if you’re feeling extra lazy. The delivery fee is only $2.99.
Bombay Grille has been part of the Charlotte food scene since 2000. They specialize in Northern Indian cuisine and tandoori-style cooking. They pride themselves on turning out traditional, authentic Indian fare. They have a lunch buffet offered every day, if you want to get a full sampling.
Neighborhood: South Charlotte
Must-order menu items: Go with the cheese-garlic naan and either the tandoori chicken or goat curry. Try the palak paneer if you want a vegetarian option.
Dine in or takeout: Opt for takeout. They also offer delivery within a 15-mile radius from Sunday – Friday for dinner.