Exploring the Most Famous Sweets of Chennai

March 29, 2024

Chennai, the capital city of Tamil Nadu, unfolds a rich cultural heritage and historical significance. The city abounds in a number of religious places, beaches, historical sites, and educational institutions. While you might be surprised by the immense variety, the city is also home to some of the most divine dishes and delicacies you will ever have. Let us discuss some of the must-have famous sweets of Chennai!

With Chennai’s rich traditions and culture, it is time to indulge in its grandeur with the sweetest treats from the state of Tamil Nadu. From the popular sweet dishes like Mysore Pak and Payasam to some of the must-try delicacies like Thaen Mithai, some of the most famous sweets of Chennai should be on your travel list this time.

What are the Most Famous Sweets of Chennai?

Chennai boasts an extensive list of some of the must-have sweet delicacies that you must try on your next trip. Whether you explore the city on your own or wish to order something online, there is something in stock for everyone. The city is dotted with a number of leading sweetmeat shops and eateries that display an exquisite collection of Chennai’s famous sweets.

If you have a sweet tooth, you would be delighted to indulge in the sweetest treats that the city has to offer. Right after a rich, spicy, savoury meal, you can order yourself a plate of your favourite sweet delicacy from Swiggy. Here are some to add in your list:

1. Payasam


It is a creamy, sweet pudding-like treat that is prepared by mixing milk, sugar, and an assortment of other ingredients to enhance the overall flavours. Some of the rich ingredients that form a part of this delicious recipe are lentils, vermicelli, fruits, and nuts. In Tamil Nadu, you will come across a wide variety of Payasam, each featuring a unique flavour and cooking method.

For instance, Pal Payasam serves to be a classic sweet dish prepared by mixing rice, milk, sugar, and cardamom. The delicacy is garnished with the goodness of saffron and cardamom. At the same time, another variant named Paruppu Payasam is prepared with split yellow moong dal and jaggery or sugar. The overall aroma and taste are enriched by adding coconut milk.

2. Mysore Pak

Mysore Pak

As you start your sweet culinary journey in South India, the first sweet delicacy you will encounter in Chennai is the world-famous Mysore Pak. It is a popular sweet delicacy that has its origins in Mysore, Karnataka. The sweet dish is equally popular across Tamil Nadu and other parts of South India. 

It is a rich, melt-in-your-mouth sweet treat that is primarily made by mixing a generous portion of ghee, chickpea flour or besan, and sugar. Mysore Pak is prepared on special occasions or festivals to enhance the auspiciousness of the occasion. It is a leading traditional dessert throughout South India.

3. Kozhukattai


It is also known as Modak in some regions like Maharashtra. Kozhukattai, a form of Modak, is a popular sweet delicacy in Chennai. It is a highly sought-after sweet dish that is prepared on special occasions or festivals like Ganesh Chaturthi. 

The sweet dish or mithai is available as a sweetened, steamed dumpling. The dumpling is prepared out of wheat flour or rice flour, depending on the preference. The dough is eventually filled with a wide assortment of rich stuffing like grated coconut or khoya. Some recipes also enhance the overall flavour of the dish by adding cardamom and saffron to the filling,

4. Rawa Kesari

Rawa Kesari

It is also known as Sheera or Kesari Bath. Rawa Kesari is a popular sweet item in Chennai and other parts of Tamil Nadu. The dish is named after its rich orange or Kesari colour. Additionally, this semolina-based dessert is quite quick and easy to prepare at the same time. 

As you get yourself a packet of Rawa Kesari from a famous sweet shop in Chennai, you will be provided the freshest variety with ample taste and texture. The dish is usually prepared on special occasions like festivals or weddings to serve the guests well. 



Also referred to as Poornalu in Andhra Pradesh, Boorelu in Chennai is a traditional dessert of South India. It is a leading sweet counterpart of famous sweet treats prepared during festivals and special occasions in Tamil Nadu.

Typically, Boorelu is available as deep-fried dumplings featuring a rich, sweet stuffing of sugar or jaggery, grated coconut, and cardamom. The outer layer of the sweet dish is prepared out of a rich batter of soaked & ground Urad Dal or Gram Lentils. Some recipes also make use of Rice Flour to prepare the dumplings. The dumplings are then shaped into small-sized balls and deep-fried until they turn golden-brown and crispy.

6. Ukkarai


The sweet dish is also known as Paruppu Puranam or Okkarai in some parts of South India. In Chennai, it is a popular traditional dessert that is usually served on festivals and special occasions. 

Ukkarai is a sweetened delicacy prepared by using lentils, usually chana dal or Bengal Gram. To the same, an array of rich ingredients like jaggery, coconut, ghee, and cardamom are added. The sweet treat is known for its distinctive aroma and divine taste. 

7. Thaen Mithai

Thaen Mithai

Also known as Thaen Mithai, Honey Sweet, or Honey Candy, it is a sought-after traditional sweet item in Chennai. The dish is famous for its distinctive bright orange hue. It is available as a chewy, soft candy prepared out of a mixture of jaggery, rice flour, and honey. To enrich the overall flavours, additional ingredients like cardamom and saffron are also added. Thean Mittai is usually enjoyed as a popular dessert or snack item as well. 


When in Chennai, you are bound to fall in love with its rich cuisine, including both savoury as well as sweet delicacies. You can have a taste of some of the most famous local sweets in Chennai by ordering online from Swiggy. You can get doorstep delivery to enhance your overall experience. 

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Satisfying your cravings, one bite at a time. Discover the best eats, trends, and uncover the hidden gems with us to make your online ordering or dining experience a memorable one.

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