We enjoyed doing different activities during our trip to Singapore. And along with enjoying the sights, we also enjoyed the delicious food Singapore had to offer! Here are some food, drinks and restaurants in Singapore that we tried and could recommend. Are you ready to feel a bit hungry?
Must-try food and drinks in Singapore
Kaya toast with kopi or teh
Kaya toast is a traditional Singaporean breakfast that I enjoy having with local kopi (coffee) whenever I visit Singapore. It’s kaya spread on toasted bread with a dollop of butter. Kaya is a sweet jam made from coconut milk, eggs, sugar, and flavored with pandan. It’s best enjoyed with some local kopi or teh (tea), which is mixed with sweetened condensed milk. In set meals at shops, kaya toast usually comes with a side of soft-boiled eggs.
Ya Kun Kaya Toast is one shop that I can recommend. They serve good toast and kopi/teh. At Changi International Airport’s terminal 4 when we arrived in the morning, we tried some at Ma Mum. Not bad! Apart from such shops, you can also find kaya toast and kopi/teh at hawker centers across Singapore.
Hainanese chicken rice
Hainanese chicken rice is one of the well-known dishes of Singapore, adapted from a dish called “Wenchang Chicken” by early Chinese immigrants from Hainan Island in southern China. The chicken is normally poached, but roasted or soy sauce-braised variations are also common. It’s served with flavorful rice, along with a dipping sauce made of red chili, garlic, soy sauce and ginger.
We tried some Hainanese chicken rice (the one braised in soy sauce) at Chinatown Food Street, a famous hawker center at Smith Street within Chinatown’s street market.
Also known as Chinese steamed bun. I am a big fan of the plain ol’ classic white mantou. During our visit to Chinatown, we passed by this food stall that sells different kinds of freshly steamed mantou. Of course, I just had to try some! I went a little bit overboard and bought a few. I got a plain one and also tried the brown sugar mantou, the pumpkin one, and one with red bean paste inside. The serving was a generous size with a good price. For a moment, I was in steamed bun heaven.
I heard that there’s a local dish of chili crab with deep-fried mantou. We haven’t tried it, but it seems to be a popular one in Singapore.
Bubble tea, also known as pearl milk tea, is popular in Asia… or in Southeast Asia, at least. In general, it’s made up of a certain type of tea, milk, sugar and chewy tapioca balls. Warning: It can be very sweet! But there are shops where you can specify how much sugar you want (100%, 70%, and so on). Many variations exist, including one sweetened with honey instead of sugar.
Iced Milo and Milo Dinosaur
Milo is a chocolate malt powder that you can mix with hot/cold water or milk. It’s a popular brand of drink around parts of Asia (and I think maybe also Australia?). Whenever I’m in Singapore, I get the iced Milo drink at McDonald’s. Milo Dinosaur has a spoonful of undissolved Milo powder added on top. Personally, I prefer the regular iced one.
They are usually available at hawker centers. The iced one (or hot, if you prefer) is also available at McDonald’s.
This tasty alcoholic beverage is a must-try drink when you’re visiting Singapore. Singapore Sling is a classic gin-based cocktail with cherry liqueur, lime juice and pineapple juice, among other ingredients. The Long Bar at Raffles Hotel proudly calls itself the home of the Singapore Sling:
The Singapore Sling, widely regarded as the national drink, was first created in 1915 by Raffles bartender Ngiam Tong Boon.
I’ve tried the Long Bar’s Singapore Sling before. It does taste good and it’s not too strong, in the humble opinion of a very occasional drinker like me. The taste of gin is not overpowering and everything works together well.
As of January 2019, the website of Singapore’s Raffles Hotel says it is under renovation but plans to reopen in the middle of 2019. The newly restored Long Bar, however, is open. Remember to double-check details before planning a visit!
Singapore Sling is also available at other bars and restaurants. We’ve tried one at OverEasy (Fullerton). Not bad! But if you decide to try this cocktail and have some money to spare, I would recommend the one from the Long Bar at Raffles Hotel. It’s more expensive than the others (at around S$32), but it tastes better too. The bar also has a nice laid-back ambiance, with wicker chairs and traditional ceiling fans.
We really like this refreshing and cold drink, usually made fresh as you order. A piece of sugarcane is pressed through a mill, extracting a liquid, which is then filtered and poured in a glass with ice cubes. This drink is perfect for cooling down after a day in the sun! It is actually not too sweet, in our opinion, so it’s not sickly sweet when you drink it.
Oh, and one more thing… Water
Water? Yes, water!
Okay, it isn’t exactly a must-try drink, but we wanted to give it a special mention. One of the awesome things about Singapore is that it is safe to drink water straight from the tap! It comes with the assurance that it is well within the World Health Organization’s drinking water guidelines and the US Environmental Public Health (Quality of Piped Drinking Water) Regulations 2008.
That said, you can save some money by not buying bottled water and instead using a reusable water bottle. You can also help lessen plastic trash. That’s awesome, right? We spotted water refilling stations/fountains around the airport and the zoo. There are most likely several in other places too.
Other restaurants in Singapore that we tried
At Merlion Park, we enjoyed some burgers with fries at OverEasy (Fullerton), an American diner with a lovely view of Marina Bay, especially at night. The food and service weren’t bad either! They also serve cocktails such as the Singapore Sling we previously mentioned. There are various other restaurant options at the park too. After eating, you can burn those calories by going on a stroll around places nearby, like the Supertree Grove (free admission) at Gardens by the Bay.
Food choices at VivoCity
There are numerous places to eat at VivoCity shopping mall, where you will find the Sentosa Express monorail. So if you’re visiting Sentosa often, you will spend quite some time here too. There’s Food Republic at level 3, near the Sentosa monorail station. It’s a food court with various stalls, offering you a good number of food choices.
At other levels of VivoCity, some restaurants that we’ve tried and could recommend are Marché Mövenpick and Osaka Ohsho (which serves delicious ramen and gyoza). They also have other branches across Singapore.
The Soup Spoon
The Soup Spoon is a personal favorite. I love their Tangy Tomato with Basil soup and Roasted Pumpkin soup. Their Meatless Minestrone and Herb Chicken Breast with Mushroom flatbread are also yummy! I think their soups are very filling. The restaurant has branches at VivoCity, Tampines Mall, Ang Mo Kio Hub and other locations in Singapore.
Toast Box offers kaya toast, traditional Nanyang kopi and several other Asian favorites. Their laksa — a spicy noodle soup with coconut milk — is pretty good. Toast Box has a number of branches around Singapore.
Scattered around Singapore are loads of hawker centers, otherwise known as food courts. You’re likely to see one wherever you may be. Hawker centers consist of various food stalls offering different kinds of cheap and delicious meals. They are great for budget travelers, like us!
Do keep in mind, though, that hawker centers inside malls or other renowned establishments could be more expensive than the regular ones (i.e., near the MRT, just around the corner, etc.)
Malaysian Food Street
Malaysian Food Street is a hawker center within Sentosa, near the entrance to Universal Studios Singapore. It offers… you guessed it… Malaysian cuisine! Here we tried some wanton mee with char siew and more Nanyang coffee (iced!). We reckon this place is a bit more affordable compared to most other places to eat in Sentosa.
Chinatown Food Street
Chinatown Food Street is a well-known hawker center at Smith Street within Chinatown’s street market in Singapore, with an al-fresco dining style. There are plenty of food stalls and restaurants around offering a diverse selection of local cuisine.
BreadTalk is a bakery, but we’re including it in this list anyway. It’s a bakery chain with branches across various malls in Singapore (and around Asia). It offers freshly baked bread, pastries and cakes. Among its products, the Earthquake Cheese Toast and Marble Chocolate Toast are our favorites.
A little something for you!
We created a printable PDF document of our travel itinerary in Singapore. It’s also available as a FREE download to help you plan your trip!
~ Safe travels, everyone!
Are there any food, drinks or restaurants in Singapore that you like? Which ones would you recommend?