Indian food for beginners! what to order?
One thing you have to remember about Indian food is that it is not a generic cuisine. It is intensely regional (north indian, south indian, bengali, kerala, goan) and what you should order should correspond with the regionality of the restaurant you are at! If you are a first timer, go easy on spice - mild.
Assorted appetizer sampler is fail proof
tandoori chicken (bbq), paneer pakoras (veg), kababs, seek kabobs, veggie samosas, tiger prawns
Non Vegetarian Indian Food
chicken tikka masala, butter chicken (makhani chicken), tandoori dishes, Mutton Rogan Josh, chicken biryani, goan vindaloo
Vegetarian India Food / Vegan Food
saag paneer, malai kofta, palak paneer, gobi manchurian, chickpeas, baingan bharta, matar paneer, aloo matar
Chaat Places (Indian Street Food)
vada pav, pani puri, bhel puri, dahi puri, dosa, idli, dahi vadas, uttapams, mysore masala dosa
Naan bread in indianrestaurants is likely be made with yogurt
onion or cauliflower or okra bhajis, vegetable samosas and vegetable pakoras are all vegan. vegetable curry, veggie vindaloo, chana masala/chole, sambar, vegetable biryani are other options
Gluten Free Options
Tandoori chicken, fish, and shrimp are almost always gluten-free, Indian spices are gluten free, with the exception of something called "hing", Always ask for Gluten Free Menu to be on the safe side.