Top 10 Food To Try In Singapore

food to try in singapore
| 5 min read
Vonz Kwa
Endorsed by a Singapore Local Expert
Vonz Kwa

Singapore – a food paradise in Southeast Asia. Singaporeans pride themselves in their nation’s food heritage and have unofficially accepted it as part of their national identity. Ask any tourists and they will tell you of the delicious chicken rice they have tasted at Maxwell Food Centre, Hokkien Mee at Chomp Chomp Food Centre, Satay at Makansutra Gluttons Bay, or Chili Crab at Old Airport Road Food Centre. Meanwhile, food is a favorite topic of debate and a good conversation starter amongst Singaporeans. More than just a splendid array of local delights, Singapore’s hawker centers are unique to its own and serves as a cherished public space of gathering. It is also your one-stop destination for a palette of delectable tastes of local flavors! Below, is a list of the food to try in Singapore. Check it out.

1. Nasi Padang

Nasi Padang, 2010
Source: Photo by user Graham Hills used under CC BY 2.0

Nasi Padang is a steamed rice dish served with a banquet of pre-cooked dishes that originated from Padang, Indonesia. It is typically served with various choices of vegetables, fish, meats, curries and spicy sambal chili. From fried pomfret to eggplant to fatty beef bits in gravy to potato patties and fried beancurd, there is something delicious for everyone! Head over to any of Singapore’s delightful hawker centers, and you will definitely find a nasi padang store. This dish is a crowd favorite amongst the Malay and Indonesian community, and widely available. Be sure to eat like the Indonesians, add on a lot of sambal chili to your food!

Nasi Padang (Alexandra Village Food Centre)

Address: #01-65 Alexandra Village Food Centre, 120 Bukit Merah Lane 1, 150120

Opening hours: Mon - Sun 7:00 am - 6:00 pm

Average price for two people: Above 8 USD

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2. Bak chor mee

food to try in singapore | bak chor mee
Source: instagram

Bak chor mee (minced meat noodles) is a traditional Chinese noodle dish. Noodles, vinegar, pork slices, minced pork, mushrooms, pork liver, deep-fried lard, and meatballs are its main ingredients. In preparation of bak chor mee, you can opt for mee pok (flat egg noodles) or mee kia (thin egg noodles). You will also decide whether you prefer the dry version or the soup version. Most hawkers like it spicy so they add chili sauce to it but that is totally optional. If you want to try bak chor mee, you can head over the hawkers center and look for the Meng’s Kitchen, they have bak chor mee in their menu along with other restaurants in the area.

Meng's Kitchen

Address: 246B Upper Thomson Road, Singapore 574370

Opening hours: Mon - Sun 9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Website: Meng’s Kitchen

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3. Nasi lemak

Nasi lemak (rich rice) is a dish with a creamy coconut infused rice. People have a wide variety of toppings for their Nasi Lemak. Some people prefer it with deep fried fish while others like chicken wings with it. Nasi lemak recipes only differ from the side dishes that people mix with it but the whole idea of it is that the rice should be creamy and flavorful. Some people add pandan leaves for extra flavoring. There is a wide variety of side dishes you can add to it, it’s up to you. If you want to know how a Nasi Lemak looks and tastes like, check out Chong Pang Nasi Lemak. It is on the list of the best Nasi Lemak stalls in Singapore.

Chong Pang Nasi Lemak

Address: 447 Sembawang Rd, Singapore 758404

Opening hours: Mon - Sun 5:00 pm - 7:00 am

Average price for two people: Under 20USD

Website: Chong Pang Nasi Lemak

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4. Laksa

Curry Laksa - Laksa King (2597729514)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Alpha used under CC BY-SA 2.0

A laksa is a noodle dish which has a spicy and creamy coconut flavoring to it. There are various recipes for laksa, but traditionally, Singaporean laksa tastes like curry with a seafood flavor. Its broth has a spicy and creamy taste. Prawns and fishcakes often go with it. It is a popular dish to Singaporeans, especially during the rainy season. If you want to try a laksa, you should head over to the nearest Katong Laksa from your location. They serve very affordable and flavorful Laksa dishes, and they have a number of outlets throughout Singapore.

328 Katong Laksa

Address: 51 East Coast Road, Singapore 428770

Opening hours: Mon - Sun 10:00 am - 10:00 pm

Average price for two people: Above 10USD

Website: 328 Katong Laksa

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5. Hainanese Chicken

Hainanese Chicken’s recipe is a signature dish of the people of the Hainan Province in China. It features a chicken dish with a specially seasoned rice. It is usually garnished with a number of flavorful ingredients from cucumber and tomatoes to chili sauce and garlic sauce. Hainan Chicken is famous in Southeast Asia and it is considered one of Singapore’s unofficial national food. Therefore, a lot of restaurants in Singapore, from affordable ones to high-end ones, have Hainanese chicken on their menu. One of the oldest restaurants serving Hainanese chicken in Singapore is Chin chin Eating House. So if you want to experience the savory taste of this delectable dish, head over to their restaurant and give yourself a treat.

Chin chin Eating House

Address: 19 Purvis St, Singapore 188598

Opening hours: Mon - Thurs 11:00 am - 9:00 pm / Fri - Sun 11:30 am - 9:00 pm

Average price for two people: Under 22USD

Website: Chin chin Eating House

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6. Hokkien mee

Originally from the Fujian province of China, Hokkien Mee has been adopted by the Malays and Singaporeans. It is a dish composed of egg noodles, rice noodles, eggs, prawns and squids, pork chunks and, sides of fresh vegetables, and different flavorful seasonings. The Singaporean version of Hokkien mee is lighter in color compared to the Malay version and the noodles are usually stir-fried. Kim’s Famous Fried Hokkien Prawn Mee serves one of the best Hokkien Mee in Singapore. Feel free to visit their restaurant for a food trip.

Kim's Famous Fried Hokkien Prawn Mee

Address: 62B Jln Eunos, Singapore 419510

Opening hours: Mon - Sun 11:00 am - 1:00 am

Average price for two people: Under 30USD

Website: Kim’s Famous Fried Hokkien Prawn Mee

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7. Otak-Otak

Fish otak otak
Source: Photo by user ProjectManhattan used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Otak-Otak is a popular food in Southeast Asia especially in Singapore, Indonesia, and Malaysia. It is made from grilled fish cake seasoned with starch and spices and wrapped in a banana leaf. It is usually eaten as a cold served snack. Some people like it with rice. Otak originally means brains in Malaysian and Indonesian language and the food is called otak-otak because as hilarious as the idea is, it resembles the appearance of a brain, according to them. It is usually reddish in color in Singapore because of the chili coloring, turmeric, and curry powder. A lot of restaurants and food stalls in Singapore offer otak-otak, one of them is Bijan Restaurant. Head over there for a taste of fresh otak-otak.

Bijan Restaurant

Address: 511 Guillemard Rd, #B1-02, Singapore 399849

Opening hours: Mon - Sun 12:00 nn - 9:00 pm

Average price for two people: 22USD - 60USD

Website: Bijan Restaurant

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8. Char Kway Teow

Char Kway Teow
Source: Photo by Flickr user tanzia45 used under CC BY 2.0

Char Kway Teow (stir-fried rice cake strips), considered one of Singapore’s unofficial national dishes, Char Kway Teow is also popular in Southeast Asia especially in Brunei, Indonesia, and Malaysia. It is a noodle dish made from flat noodles, stir-fried in special flavorful seasoning. It is also garnished with Chinese sausages, whole prawns, bean sprouts, fish cakes and a lot more. If you are monitoring your blood pressure, Char Kway Teow will not do you any good because of its high saturated fat content. One of the best Char Kway Teow in Singapore can be tasted in Hill Street Char Kway Teow.

Hill Street Char Kway Teow

Address: 16 Bedok S Rd, #01-41, Singapore 460016

Opening hours: Tues - Sat 11:30 am - 4:45 pm

Average price for two people: Under 22USD

Website: Hill Street Char Kway Teow

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9. Bak Kut Teh

Founder Bak Kut Teh
Source: Photo by Flickr user Kars Alfrink used under CC BY 2.0

Bak Kut Teh (meat bone tea) is a Singaporean soup made of pork ribs and a special broth of herbs and spices. Few of its ingredients are varieties of mushrooms, offal, fried tofu puffs and dried tofu, and more. Although it has the word tea in its name, there is actually no tea mixed in the broth itself but the dish is usually accompanied with an oolong tea that helps for digestion when enjoying this flavorful soup. Founder Bak Kut Teh in New Orchid Hotel serves one of the best bak kuh tehs in Singapore. Head over there and enjoy a flavourful bowl of this authentic Singaporean dish.

Founder Bak Kut Teh

Address: 355 Balestier Rd, Goodwill Mansion, Singapore 329782

Opening hours: Wed - Mon 12:00 nn - 3:30 pm / 6:00 pm - 2:00 am

Average price for two people: Under 30USD

Website: Founder Bak Kut Teh

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10. Chili Crab

Chili Crab is an original Singaporean dish, cooked with mud crabs boiled gently and sauteed in a sweet and spicy tomato paste. It is popular among Singaporeans, and almost every restaurant in the city offers this signature Singaporean dish. Although it has “chili” in its name, it doesn’t have to be super spicy. In fact, most restaurants cook this dish with just a moderate spicy flavor. Traditionally, Singaporeans eat this dish with bare hands to savor the flavor and juiciness. No need to worry about getting all messy because restaurants provide towels and a washing bowl for cleansing your hands after the meal. If you want to try this unofficial Singaporean national dish, you should visit a Long Beach Seafood restaurant outlet. They have a number of branches throughout Singapore, and they serve chili crab with different levels of spiciness.

Long Beach @ Dempsey

Address: 25 Dempsey Road, Left turn to Dempsey via Holland Rd (before Peirce Rd) Singapore 249670

Opening hours: Mon - Sun 11:00 am - 3:00 pm / 5:00 pm - 1:00 am

Average price for two people: Above 68USD

Website: Long Beach @ Dempsey

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Hello Singapore

Singapore is unquestionably not just a country with a rich economy and diverse culture but a land of great food as well. There are so many flavorful and delicious local dishes that tourists must try in Singapore. So, check out our list of authentic Singaporean dishes and make it your food guide for your next trip to this amazing country.

Tip from Trip101 local expert



Azmi Restaurant

Another must-try is Singapore is Chapati from Azmi Restaurant! It's located in a very unassuming coffeeshop in Little India but a bite of this Chapati makes alllll other Chapatis inferior! The Chapati is perfect on its own, but pairing it with the mutton keema is A MUST.

Tip from Trip101 local expert



Vanda desserts Vanda desserts

When you're in the Somerset area, visit Vanda Botanical Desserts at  313@somerset and Takashimaya. Newly opened in December 2022, Vanda Botanical Desserts sells exotic ice cream flavors wrapped in thin Mochi skin, giving it the added chewy and stretchable texture. I simply can't resist the temptation, especially in hot weather.

Tip from Trip101 local expert



Holy Grill

Seafood lovers should head to Holy Grill, located at Old Airport Road Hawker Centre. This salmon set costs $12.80, and serves fresh salmon that's usually sold out before 7pm! 

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Okinawan stir fried bitter gourd

Contributed by Content Creator, Dara Neo

Okinawan cuisine is different from traditional Japanese cuisine in many ways, as it is influenced by the unique culture, history and geographical location of the Okinawa Islands.

  • Use of Pork Pork is a prominent protein source in Okinawan cuisine, while in mainland Japan, seafood and chicken are more common.

  • Use of Bitter Melon Bitter gourd is a distinctive ingredient in Okinawan cuisine. It is known for its unique taste and is often used in stir-fried dishes and soups.

Featured in this video are two Okinawan dishes — the bitter gourd slices stir-fried with pork belly chunks, tofu and egg, and the seasoned mixed rice cooked in fish stock with pork, kelp, shiitake mushrooms and carrots. It was yummy!

If you do visit K.K. Kitchen, go say hi to the friendly couple, the lady boss with the warmest smile!!

Address: BLK 92 Lor 4 Toa Payoh, #01-264, Singapore 310092

Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


This article has been endorsed by Singapore local expert Vonz Kwa

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She is a lover of life and a very optimistic person. She thinks of herself as a vessel of a billion possibilities, which can harness limitless potential. Trying new experiences, going places she's...Read more

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