Indian Food in Montevideo, Uruguay

You wouldn’t think that there’d be Indian food in Uruguay as a very small country nestled in between Brazil and Argentina, both places that don’t have much of a South Asian diaspora. We learned that there are about 200 South Asians living in Montevideo. Most people arrived there to work or Tata Consulting which has an office in Montevideo. And on Saturdays they play cricket on the Rambla. They have a legit league it seems as we saw them wearing their named jerseys.

South Asian men playing cricket on Saturday on the Rambla in Montevideo. Uruguay

Plus, like its neighbors, Montevideo is a meat-centric country. Beef, meat processing, fishing, and agriculture are amongst the country’s major industries. And though not all Indian food is vegetarian, it’s the most vegetarian-friendly cuisine in the world, and not as popular in South America.

I was pleasantly surprised to find two Indian restaurants in Montevideo, Moksha Cocina de la India and The Taste of India. I had a chance to eat at Moksha and did Uber Eats from The Taste of India.

There are a few other restaurants in Montevideo with Indian/Indian-ish names such as: Namaste Chill Out Bar & Resto, Mandala’s, and Tandory. But these are not Indian restaurants. Tandory has a few Indian inspired dishes. For more info about those restaurants and the vegetarian and vegan food scene in Montevideo, check out our article.

I liked Moksha better; it’s also a lot more expensive than Taste of India. Below are detailed reviews of each.

{Review of Moksha Cocina de la India}

Moksha Cuisine of India is a very new restaurant in Montevideo – 4 months to be exact. As you can imagine there’s very little Indian food in Uruguay and having grown up eating Indian food pretty much everyday and still doing so now, I was happy to find this place.

Moksha is open for dinner nightly from 7pm-midnight everyday except Tuesday. The restaurant is closed on Tuesday.

“The Gods See Everything”.

I got to meet the owner, Aparna, and hear her story about how she moved to this small South American country, with a total population of 3 million from the bustling streets of Mumbai, population 18 million. As an adventurous traveler and entrepreneur myself, I admired her, as it takes serious guts and grit to leave your home and venture into an entirely different country, culture, and language AND start a business.

Moksha means enlightenment which in Hinduism and Jainism is the liberation of the soul from the cycle of birth, death, and rebirth. That’s not pertinent to dining at the restaurant other than anyone would recognize that this is an Indian restaurant, from its name.

We ordered:

  • Daal makhani
  • Garlic naan
  • Palak paneer

I was in the mood for daal (lentils) but there weren’t any on the menu so I asked and they were nice to make it for me. To drink, my husband had a honey-based beer which he enjoyed. I ordered the nimbu-pani (lemon water) a dish that always me reminds me of my mom, and no Indian meal is complete without chai. Each curry dish came with a serving of rice. I also love raita, an Indian yogurt dish with vegetables and spices. It wasn’t on the menu either but Aparna said they could make it for us.

I thought the food was good, for Uruguay. I live in San Francisco where there’s an abundance of types and really excellent Indian food, but while traveling I believe you can’t compare and you have to evaluate experiences relative to the place you’re in. I enjoyed eating at Moksha and was happy to meet and support Aparna and her restaurant.

Payment: They recently started taking Visa, so yay for that! You can of course pay with cash as well. The meal was pricey but understandably so as it’s expensive to import ingredients from India.

Daal makhini, palak paneer, raita and rice at Moksha Cocina de la India, Montevideo, Uruguay
Enoying chai on a cool, spring night at Moksha Cocina de la India, in Montevideo, Uruguay

{Review of The Taste of India}

I ordered from Taste of India for dinner on a Thursday evening. Like Moksha, it’s a dinner-only restaurant. They’re open from 7pm-11pm Tuesday to Thursday; 6pm-midnight Friday, Saturday, Sunday and closed on Monday. They’ve been open for a few years.

I ordered:

  • 1 Butter paneer masala
  • Tadka daal
  • Vegetarian fried rice
  • 2 orders of garlic naan
  • 1 Pineapple lassi
Ordered butter masala paneer, tadka daal, garlic naan and vegetarian rice for two people from The Taste of India, Montevideo, Uruguay on Uber Eats.

Before placing my order, I called them to ask about spice level and their chai. I spoke to the owner, in Hindi, so there was NO language barrier. I specifically asked him to make the food non-spicy as per the Uruguyan definition.

But I was very disappointed as the food was so spicy that I couldn’t eat most of it. The butter paneer masala was fine and we finished that but we literally left the tadka daal and rice untouched. The garlic naan had lots of huge chunks of garlic on it. I’ve never seen that before and the taste was overwhelming.

We still ate the naan but wiped most of the garlic off. The total with delivery cost about $45.

I was sad (but totally understand) that they can’t deliver authentic India chai. You can only have it if you eat at the restaurant. I appreciated that the owner told me that when I called, otherwise that would have been another disappointment.

Authentic Indian chai has milk and then there are issues with keeping it fresh, hence it’s hard to do delivery. Their Uber Eats menu has a chai without milk which is basically tea with cardamom.

It was worth trying for the experience. But I was definitely disappointed, especially since I called ahead and spoke with the owner and clarified – with no language barriers, and I ended up not enjoying the meal and wasting a lot of money.


Overall it’s really cool that there’s even Indian food available in Montevideo. If you’re really craving Indian food during your visit go for Moksha. Otherwise save your money and enjoy other cuisine while you’re in Montevideo. Indian food in Montevideo is expensive for what you get and not nearly as good as you get in other cities across the globe.

{ProTips for Dining in Montevideo}

Don’t assume all restaurants take credit card. Some are cash only, some are Visa only and some are debit card only. Use WhatsApp or Google Voice (if you have deposited money in your account) and call to find out.

Double check restaurants are open before you head out. As a vegetarian or vegan in Montevideo, your meal pursuits have purpose. You aren’t necessarily heading out and just eating somewhere you see along the way. You’ve planned ahead and specifically targeted a restaurant.

I was about to order an Uber to go to one restaurant that said it had a lot of vegan food and according to their website, they were open. Thankfully before ordering an Uber, I thought I better call to see if they take credit card. And it turned out they do take credit card but were closed! So glad I called!

In the USA when you order with Uber Eats, most restaurants include cutlery, as a given. Not in Montevideo. Add a note in your order.

Many restaurants are closed on a weekday and some are only open for a few hours per day. I noticed a lot of restaurants were closed on Monday. Moksha Indian restaurant is closed on Tuesdays.

In this article I reviewed the restaurants and cafes that I visited during my nine day stay. If you go, please send your comments and thoughts too! Keep adding those stamps to your PassportPages!


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