Review: Royal India Cuisine in Lynnwood – it just gets better

New dishes at Royal India.

I have mixed emotions. I do love share good news and encourage locals to check out the great cuisine offered at restaurants in the community. But when we arrived at Royal India Cuisine recently, well past the standard lunch hour, it was still packed! Only one parking space left.

“Wonder what’s up,” said my spouse. As we strode to the door, we noticed industrious activity… expansion and improvements to the outdoor patio. New faces greeted us as we entered, and joined other patrons awaiting a table. “Should we ask for a table outside?”

New patio at Royal India.

Royal India Cuisine has been our go-to, over many years. First discovered in Kirkland, we delighted when the Lynnwood location opened and offered our favorite Indian dishes much closer to home. Fresh ingredients, friendly staff, and at $12.99 the lunch buffet is the best bargain in Lynnwood.

Updates in décor – new flooring and walls painted warm cream color that brightened the space. The lunch buffet setup has relocated to the side, so traffic flow to and from to the tables has improved. I noted new modern design in serving ware, with several new sizes and shapes. I chuckled to my husband that the smaller cups for the hot chai served at the buffet meant we’d burn a few extra calories walking back and forth to get refills.

Fresh salads and condiments.

Seated within a few minutes, we surveyed the new buffet layout. Hubby was delighted to find more vegetable offerings like Bhindi Masala, a dish made with okra, onion, tomatoes and sweet spices and a new Fish Coconut Curry. I was happy to see my favorite – Butter Chicken. While I missed the goat curry, I spooned up a good portion of Tandoor veggies, and tried out a Chicken Curry – similar sauce to the fish dish. Turmeric joined curry powder, cinnamon, paprika, bay leaf, ginger, tomato paste, yogurt, and coconut milk to create a creamy and tasty sauce. Condiments comprised of fresh ingredients and house recipes for Ratia, Mint and Tamarind sauces completed the offerings.

Garlic Naan

We headed to the table with plates full of color, and exuded aromas that made our mouths water.

Crisp pieces of Papadum were offered next to pieces of warm vegetable Pakora, but we waited for our favorite side, Naan… fluffy, fresh off the Tandoor oven wall, and delivered to the table. Garlic Naan is a favorite, but even the standard version, complementary as part of the lunch buffet, is a warm way to scoop up the extra sauce that lingers on the plate.

A smiling server refilled our Chai cups. Drink options can include several types of Lassi. Mango is joined by Sweet Rosewater and a “Salty” version. A display on the table listed  Indian beers, and wines are available by the glass.

Desserts always tempt, so I appreciate the opportunity to “sample” several types, offered in rotation on the buffet. Traditional Indian rice pudding is hubby’s favorite, but the mango pudding comes in a close second. Desserts are just sweet enough, and satisfy one with a few spoonfuls.

We chatted briefly with one of the owner/partners, Ayesha Bhutti. He assured us that ownership at Royal India Cuisine has not changed, just updates in management, with attention to changes in commerce trends.

On the wall I saw that Royal India cuisine menu items could now be ordered from GrubHub, Doordash, Chownow, and Seamless.

Given that we took the last parking space at 1:30 in the afternoon, we might have to investigate some home delivery options in the future.

Online ordering available for Royal India.

Menu entrée portions are generous, accompanied by rice, and priced on average at $14 all day long. A visit to overwhelmed a bit. Over a dozen chicken dishes, almost the same number of lamb, beef and fish, and even more vegetarian choices. It made me glad the online order form patiently awaits one’s decisions.

Royal India Cuisine is located at 7531 196th St. S.W., in Lynnwood. A sister location is in Kirkland.


Lunch from 11 a.m. — 3 p.m.  Dinner from 5-10 p.m.


Lunch from 11 a.m. — 3 p.m.  Dinner from 5-10 p.m.

Lunch from 11 a.m. — 3 p.m.  Dinner from 5-9 p.m.

– By Kathy Passage


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