The mention of bunny chow alarms many foreign visitors, but there’s nothing to be concerned about when it comes to this archetypal South African dish. That’s because it contains bunny in name only, and not in ingredients.
The dish, also referred to as a bunny, is essentially a hollowed out half loaf of bread filled with curry. The curry usually consists of mutton, lamb or chicken, with vegetarian options as well. Although the dish originated in the city of Durban, it’s popular in Cape Town, and you can track it down at these 10 spots.
This no-frills Indian restaurant in the Cape Town suburb of Hout Bay serves up a variety of traditional meals cooked and served by Pukka Pakistanis. Although you shouldn’t expect much from the diverse menu, they do have four popular bunny chow options on the menu—lamb, vegetable, and two chicken options, which is a rare find on this side of the mountain.
This is the go-to venue for budget eats with Eastern influences. You’ll find everything from masalas to samosas at the Eastern Food Bazaar, and they also make one of the best value bunny chows in the Cape Town CBD. Their Punjabi stand offers vegetable, chicken, and lamb bunnies, which come served with rice, dahl, and salad, making it a substantial meal for under R50 ($4 USD).
This popular Indian restaurant, nestled in a corner of the inner city’s Dunkley Square, is a great place to visit if you’re interested in sampling a traditional Durban curry bunny chow. The homey restaurant specializes in Durban curry with a popular lamb bunny chow option, and on a pleasant evening, the outside seating in the open square makes for the perfect location in which to sample it.
Sundoo is a relatively new kid on the Indian curry block in Cape Town, but comes fresh from the mind of renowned chef Seelan Sundoo. The small restaurant, located in Sea Point, doesn’t take reservations and usually focuses on two sittings, one at 6:30 p.m. and again at 8:30 p.m. Most of the dishes on offer are South Indian cuisine, but they have popular platters that includes three of their bunny chow variations.
Haas is well-known for their exotic, single-origin coffees, eclectic décor, and delicious café fare. Their simple yet innovative menu features a variety of freshly baked goods, scrumptious breakfasts, light meals, and cakes to satisfy your sweet-tooth. Given that they have the word rabbit in their name (haas is Afrikaans for rabbit), it’s only natural that they include bunny chow on their list of offerings: a chicken bunny chow that will satisfy any curry cravings.
In the Cape Town suburb of Milnerton, you’ll find the popular curry takeout spot of Yeh Dosti. They serve a range of traditional Durban curries, roti wraps, and even toasted sandwiches, but the main attraction on their menu is their bunnies. They serve a traditional lamb curry bunny chow, as well as chicken and bean variations.
Indigo Indian Restaurant is another spot outside of the main CBD region. The no-frills restaurant serves up a range of popular Indian dishes, and it’s primarily a take-out joint. There are a few options on the menu, but most people head there for their bunny chow and freshly prepared sides available to go. It’s cheap and traditional, and although they’re quite far out of the main inner city region, if the craving is strong, it may be worth the drive.
This simple but traditional restaurant is known for its bunny chow. They are located in the northern Cape Town suburb of Bellville, and have generated a regular band of loyal patrons who venture there to eat their popular trio bunny chow. Though simple, the dish they serve up is traditional, budget-friendly and filling, and ticks the box for bunny chow in the North.
Inside Lounge at Eden on the Bay is a popular sports lounge that serves up a range of Indian dishes, as well as a selection of pizzas. They’re just a stone’s throw away from the ocean, with sea views and fresh ocean air rolling in. Though somewhat of an unlikely food destination, included in their repertoire is a bunny chow that many claim to be the best in the city.
This is one of the most popular no-frills takeaway joints in the Cape’s Southern Suburbs, and their bunny chow is the go-to item on the menu for many. Though unassuming from the outside, regulars in the know swear by the good value rotis and bunnies. Both traditional South African meal options are of exceedingly good value, and will likely do small appetites for more than one meal.