The Malnad of Karnataka can be culturally can be clearly divided as south Malnad comprising Northern Somawarpete in North Kodagu, Sakaleshapura, Mudigere, southern part of Chikmagalur Taluk and western part of Belur and Alur taluks in Hassan. Central Malnad comprising of Chikmagalur, Koppa, Malnad region of Shimoga, and Western Ghat regions of Uttara Kannada.
Although many refer to the Malnad cuisine as an amalgamation of Coorgi and Mangalorean cuisine, it has its own distinct style. And moreover Malnad people are considered to be natives to these part of Karnataka when compared with Coorgies and Bunts and Shettys. So rather Malnad cuisine has traveled to the kitchens of Kodavas and Bunts would be a sensible line.
The cuisine is heavily influenced by the variety of fruits and vegetables available in the rich forests of western ghats. The ingredients like tender bamboo shoots, colocassia leaves, turmeric leaves, raw jackfruit are easily found in the Sahyadri ranges. Steaming is a favored method of cooking in Malnad. More often than not there is minimal use of oils in Malnad cuisine.