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Tibetan foods and beverages have diverse of its kind, which found only in Tibetan Plateau regions. Tibet, known as the “Roof of the World”, is famous for its unmatched beauty and ancient history. Due to the extremely high altitudes, and harsh climate, Tibetan culture has had to adapt. Tibetan food has also adapted. Tibetan food is not only sustenance but also helps Tibetan people survive the harsh climates.

Their food keeps them warm, gives them energy, helps them with the high altitude, and gives them nutrients essential to the harsh climate. Due to the high altitude of Tibet, water boils at 90 degrees making cooking with water impossible, and vegetables are scarce in the high altitude, so Tibetan cuisine has become very specialized. The main ingredients are meat and dairy products. The food in Tibet shows a strong similarity to that in India and parts of China but is uniquely Tibetan.

Tibetan Cookery background

The Tibetan cookery used to have the local touch. As the influence of the outer food culture began to reach Tibet, there had been three great changes on the Tibetan foods culture. It changed considerably for the first time in the 6th century. At that time trade between the Tibet Kingdom and central China, even the middle Asian countries had increased. Many new cooking materials, such as rice, milk, vegetables and fruits and new methods were introduced into Tibet and the cooking methods of Tibetan foods were greatly improved.

During the 18th century, the Tibetan cookery greatly developed again. Luxurious banquets were held from time to time. Dishes making developed to an extreme in variety, scale, richness and the cooking skills as well. With the intercommunication of both economics and cultures, Chinese diet culture penetrated into central Tibet gradually.

There was a Tibetan dish named “GyaSay Liu Chobgyal”. It means the 18 Han dishes. In the Qing Dynasty the court invented a special type of cuisine for the royal family). With the influence of the Han diet culture, there were more and more vegetables, fruits, kitchen utensils in Tibet. Such as in Lhasa, Gyangtse, and Shigatse. Even common people in Tibet had mastered some simple Han cooking skills.

Tibetan Food in Rural area

The new Tibetan foods culture blended together diet, entertainment, enjoyment, and fun. It came to be accepted by some noble families. However, due to the limit of the economics, geography, transport and the lack of communication, only a small group of noble or merchantmen’s families mastered the cooking skills of the nice and luxurious food and enjoyed it.

During the 1980s, the Tibetan cookery was greatly developed for the third time. With the open policies and the development of tourism in Tibet, new cooking materials were used, and cooking skills were improved. The new Tibetan foods features in diet culture, cookery arts, and the dietary courtesies.

Beautiful girls enjoying Tibetan butter tea

Butter Tea

Butter tea of the type made by Tibetans is made by boiling the tea leaves repeatedly. The best quality tea is boiled for around half the day and takes on a very dark color. It is then put into a traditional tea churn and salt and yak butter get added. It is churned vigorously by...
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momo design competition


Sha Momo (Tibetan dumplings), is also very popular with Tibetans a distinctive cuisine, also serve as ethinic‘s hospitality, often have guests enter the House, the host will treat you Tibetan dumplings . Tibetan steamed bun unique production technology, is very particular about the meat, use must be fresh lamb, 40%fat and 60% meat, not like...
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Tourist love Tibetan Noodles soup

Amdo Noddle

Amdo Noodle are popular among Tibetan people. Amdo, refers to the Tibetan region of Qinghai, Gansu and northwestern Sichuan Province border each other. Tibetans living in this region like to eat a kind of dough strips – Amdo dough strips very much. It is the common wheaten food in Tibetan families. Method of making amdo...
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Tibetan Dumpling with soup

Chu Mok

Chumok is the food similar to Jiaozi (the Chinese dumpling), which is the favorite food in China, especially northern China. Method of making: put some chopped meat on a piece of flat round dough strip and roll up it, put the ends together, just as how Chinese people make Jiaozi. Tu-pa is the food for...
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LHASA BEER - beer from roof of the world

Lhasa Beer

Lhasa beer, best drink in Tibet for beer lover. It label as beer from of world. It is an all-malt European style lager, but is made from ingredients such as Himalayas spring water, barley and yeast. However, 30 percent of the malt content derives from the husk-less native Tibetan barley which is partly responsible for...
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Yogurt - yak milk product


Local yoghurt is a little different because it is made from yak milk, which has a high butter fat content and this makes the yoghurt very creamy. It is still made in the natural traditional way from boiled milk that is cooled and fermented with yoghurt culture. This produces a stronger flavor and some people...
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dry Yak meat in Lhasa street

Yak Meat

Yaks are one of the most common animals on the plateau and the meat is very popular with in Tibet. Locals use many creative recipes to cook the meat and it certainly goes well with drinking Chang barley liquor. Roasted yak meats, fried yak meat and cold yak meat dressed with sauces are all delicious....
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Tsampa - stable food of Tibet


The staple food of Tibetan people is Tsampa, a kind of dough made with roasted highland Chang or Tibetan wine barley flour and yak butter with water. Method of making: grind the roasted Highland Barley into flour, and mix it with ghee. It is similar to parching wheat flour in northern China. People in northern...
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Tibetan barley Wine - Chang

Barley Wine

Made from the highland barley, the main food produced in Tibet, Highland barley wine (also called Chiang in Tibet) is the wine favorite to Tibetan people and is a necessary part at festivals, marriage feasts and on some other important occasions. Method of brewing the wine: Clean the barley grains quickly (the washing can not...
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