This alpine city is not only attractive for spectacular nature but also delicious local cuisines. Since there is a scarce of vegetables and fruits in Lhasa, people often use wheat and meats such as yak, goat and mutton in their meals. Due to severe climate, the meals are higher in fat and calories than other regions. The cuisines are influenced by Indian and Nepalese cultures but still keep their traditional cooking techniques and flavor. Moreover, cheese, noodles and dairy products made from cattle here are also notable.


Tsampa is the local specialty of Lhasa. This food is basically barley flour and served with local butter tea. Butter tea and tsampa will be put in a bowl and then knead all the mixture and enjoy the dish. This food is usually used for New Year celebration in Tibetan regions. Tsampa will be thrown into the air in the New Year’s festivals to pray for peace and show respect to the Buddha who protects local life. Due to chilly weather in the mountainous area, local people eat this dish many times a day to gain sufficient protein and carbohydrate for their daily activities.

Gyurma (Blood sausage)

Sausage is the popular food in China that was invested around 1000 years ago. Basically, different fillings such as meat or blood are put into the intestines. Gyurma is a kind of blood sausage made from yak, cow or sheep’s blood. After filling process, it is boiled for several hours until it turns into grayish white. This food is usually cut into thin slices. Gyurma tastes fresh and is suitable to eat in winter.

Tibetan Meat Baozi (Meat Bun)

Tibetan Meat Baozi is a kind of steamed bun which is meatier than other Chinese traditional buns. Firstly, the raw buns are prepared, then, minced mutton or beef with rice wine and seasonings are put into the bun. Secondly, the buns are steamed for 10 to 20 minutes.

Tibetan momo

Tibetan momo is a type of local dumpling which is originally from Tibet. There are many kinds of meat can be used for fillings, for example, pork, chicken, lamb, yak and mutton. Chopped vegetables such as cabbage, onion, garlic and mushroom are added as well. The dumpling will be steamed or fried and served with a special sauce. Although the dumpling is small in size, it has a really juicy and succulent taste.

Tibetan yak meat

Yaks are the popular livestock and are easily found in Lhasa. A male yak weighs around 300 to 600 kilograms, which provides a sufficient amount of meat. This is a nutritious and tasty kind of meat which is cooked in many methods: frying, roasting or braising. Yak meat contains a high level of protein and calorie.

Tibetan Yogurt

Don’t forget to take Tibetan Yogurt for your dessert. This kind of yogurt is made from yaks’ milk, which is much creamier than cow milk. Enjoy it with some sugar, raisins or strawberries.

Most famous restaurants in Lhasa

  • Dunniya Xicanting: 100 Beijing East Road, Chengguan District
  • Lasa Xueyu Canting: Floor 2, 8 Tibetan Hospital Road, Chengguan District
  • Lasa Namasede Canting: Floor 2, Pearl Peak Greatness Mall, 30 Yutuo Road, Chengguan District
  • Tibetan Family Kitchen:1 Danjielin Road (opposite the Shangbala Palace), Chengguan District
  • House of Shambhala Restaurant:7 Jirier Lane, Chengguan District
  • Dunya Restaurant: 100 Beijing East Road, Chengguan District
  • Tash 1 Restaurant: Zangyiyuan Road, Lhasa