Araku Valley Bamboo Chicken – A Unique Tribal Delicacy

Bamboo Chicken dish at Araku Valley
Bamboo Chicken at Araku Valley

Travel to a destination cannot be complete without the local food. Every place no matter how small or big has a local delicacy hidden in its regional cuisine. Most of the times ingredients remain the same but it’s the process that makes all the difference. Bamboo Chicken is one such traditional delicious Chicken Recipe of Araku Valley. In Araku Valley tribal communities cook chicken inside the hollow of a bamboo without using any oil or water.

A tribal stall with Bamboo Chicken on offer at Araku Valley
A tribal stall with Bamboo Chicken on offer at Araku Valley

Bamboo Chicken Recipe from Araku Valley

They take the small raw chicken pieces, marinate it with ginger heavy masala. Stuff marinated chicken recipe inside the bamboo that is open from one side. And close the open end by stuffing the Sal leaves, called Adda leaves locally.  This bamboo is now put on the coal fire and turned a few times so that the heat spreads out evenly. Note that no oil or water is used in this cooking. It is only the heat passing through the burning bamboo that cooks the food inside. Once the bamboo is burnt black, it is an indication that chicken is done. Open the bamboo, remove the Sal leaves and the chicken is ready to be savored. Traditionally, Bamboo chicken is served again on a Sal leaf.

Bamboo chicken is ready inside the roasted Bamboo
Bamboo chicken is ready inside the roasted Bamboo
Opening the roasted bamboo, first glimpses of Bamboo chicken dish
Opening the roasted bamboo, first glimpses of Bamboo chicken

Trade Mark Chicken Delicacy of Araku

This is a trademark Chicken delicacy of the tribal communities of Araku valley. Only they are allowed to cook using the Bamboo. It is not served in restaurants, though they will arrange to bring it for you from the local sellers. You will find small roadside stalls made of bamboo, managed mostly by women. With green bamboos standing, masalas or spices scattered and a small coal chulha or stove at the back. I was told that during peak season people have to wait for hours before they can get the dish. Such is the popularity that it enjoys. I could not figure out if the Government has put a restriction on others making the dish, but if they have, it is definitely a good move. It is helping a lot of local population to reap the benefits of the tourism economy.

Ready to relish Bamboo chicken dish at Araku valley
Ready to relish Bamboo chicken dish

My only grouse is that being a vegetarian I could not enjoy the bamboo cooking. I tried asking them if they can make anything vegetarian using the same method. But no one showed any enthusiasm at the suggestion. They only smiled and I tried to guess the taste from the faces of those who were eating.

Coffee Plantations landscape at Araku Valley
Coffee Plantations landscape at Araku Valley

You will find the beautiful landscape of the Araku Valley Coffee plantations along the roads leading to the town, a pleasant drive through nature.

Recommend you to read following Places to visit in Araku Valley.

  1. Train Ride to Araku Valley.
  2. Araku Tribal Museum.
  3. Coffee Chocolates at Araku Valley.
  4. Borra Caves.
  5. Honey Making at Araku Valley.


  1. The first time I’ve seen this dish is in a Telugu Movie called ‘Village lo Vinayakudu’ being a veggie even i don’t have a chance to eat but will definitely try with something in veggie and will come back with a recipe.

  2. I had the good fortune to enjoy this dish at Kanker recently in Chhatisgarh. The family hosting me made this as yes, it was delicious. The bamboo flavour infused chicken was heavenly. We also discussed possibility of vegetarian dishes and two possible ingredients which were suggested were the traditional Aviyal vegetables or Tofu


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