Japanese places on a budget under $10
When I think of delicious Japanese food, exorbitantly priced omakase and snaking queues at newly opened Michelin-starred ramen restaurants come to mind. Places like Teppan Kappou Kenji and Tsuta feature really good food, but their price tag is insanely high.
Having worked at Eatbook for a while, I realised that Singapore does have really legit Japanese places at affordable price points. If you’re on a budget but still wanna tuck into delish Japanese nosh, check out these 15 Japanese food places that offer soba, ramen and don under $10!
1. Sora Boru
Sora Boru is a newly opened Japanese restaurant in Somerset that sells affordable don. For instance, you can get a Cha Soba for just $3.90. You’ll be sure to get a generous amount of Japanese buckwheat noodles that go so well with shoyu stock.
If you’re feeling extra peckish, consider their Snow Beef Don ($7.50). Mounds of beef are heaped onto fluffy rice to form a mini mountain right in your bowl. You can even get a larger portion at just $11.90.
Check out our full review of Sora Boru!
Address: 313 Orchard Road, #B3-19/20, 313@somerset, Singapore 238895
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 11am to 10pm, Sat-Sun 11am to 11pm
Sora Boru is not a halal-certified eatery, but their food contains no pork or lard.
2. Ramen Taisho
Tucked away in the heart of Maxwell Food Centre lies Ramen Taisho. The owner spent three years in and out of Japan, mastering the complicated art of ramen making, so you can expect really good ramen here.
Their expertise shine in the Black Garlic Ramen ($8.80). The legit Japanese pork bone broth flavours pair well with the umami-laden black garlic oil, giving it a nice splash of earthy flavours.
Sambal Ramen ($7.80) boasts strong hae bee flavours. It’s also really spicy, making it a favourite amongst spice lovers.
Check out our full review of Ramen Taisho!
Address: 1 Kadayanallur Street, #01-32, Maxwell Food Centre, Singapore 069184
Opening hours: Tues-Thur and Sat 11:30am to 9:30pm, Fri 11:30am to 10:30pm
Tel: 9831 1855
Ramen Taisho is not a halal-certified eatery.
Located in Amoy Street Food Centre, Kinobe is perfect for CBD office workers looking for a hearty meal that won’t break the bank. Try their Gyudon ($6), which comprises fluffy pearl rice topped with well-marinated sliced beef, then crowned with an oozing onsen egg.
The Butadon ($5) is equally scrumptious, with fatty strips of pork conferring a meaty aroma. Pair that with the creamy egg, and you’ll be sure to love this dish.
Check out our full review of Kinobe!
Address: 7 Maxwell Road, #02-126, Amoy Street Food Centre, Singapore 069111
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 10am to 3pm
Tel: 8779 1844
Kinobe is not a halal-certified eatery
4. Goen Udon
Featuring hearty plates of curry don that could pass off as a restaurant meal, Goen Udon is a great gem for those looking for a budget eat in Orchard.
Try their Special Fish Curry ($7.80), with breaded nuggets of flaky fish served with a thick curry. It excites your mouth with tons of umami flavour, from all the different ingredients used in the sauce.
If you only have $5 to spare, opt for their Special Original Curry $4.80 instead. The delicious curry is full of flavour and will leave you feeling satisfied.
Check out our full review of Goen Udon!
Address: 435 Orchard Road, #04-02/38, Stall 11, Wisma Atria Food Republic, Singapore 238877
Opening hours: Daily 10am to 10pm
Tel: 6337 4237
Goen Udon is not a halal-certified eatery.
5. Daily Noodles
A new entrant in the modern hawker scene, Daily Noodles takes things up a notch by selling Japanese maze soba (dry noodles) at affordable prices.
The Chashu Maze Soba ($6) here is a treat for the senses. Charred slices of pork belly emanate a smoky fragrance, permeating the delicate soba with a mouth-watering porkiness.
Another option for an affordable eat is their Daily Dry Ramen ($7). Crumbles of minced pork marinated in an umami-laden bean paste add an oomph of flavour to the ramen.
Check out our full review of Daily Noodles!
Address: 7 Maxwell Road, #02-130, Amoy Street Food Centre, Singapore 069111
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 10am to 3pm
Daily Noodles is not a halal-certified eatery.
6. Kazoku Japanese Cuisine
Kazoku Japanese Cuisine simply screams atas. From their plating to the physical plates they use, everything here is evidence of the owner’s attention to detail. Yet, most of their items here are priced below $10.
At just $8.80, they have a Salmon Don that is lined with plump slices of fresh salmon. The fresh seafood flavours pair well with the fluffy Japanese rice and are made better with a tinge of wasabi.
The Aburi Mentai Salmon Don ($10.90) is slightly above $10 but deserves a special mention as it’s full of flavour. The mentaiko sauce gives a sweetness that doubles to provide a decadent creaminess.
Check out our full review of Kazoku Japanese Cuisine!
Address: 1 Goldhill Plaza #01-05, Singapore 308899
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 12pm to 10pm
Tel: 9687 3782
Kazoku Japanese Cuisine is not a halal-certified eatery.
7. Buta Kin
Buta Kin puts those crazy-expensive ramen shops to shame. Made from pork and chicken bones that have boiled for hours to impart flavour, the soup base is impressive.
Their Special Tonkotsu Ramen ($6.90) presents you with three thick slices of chashu. Each slice has a golden ratio of fat to meat, ensuring that every mouth is melt-in-your-mouth tender.
On the other hand, Tonkotsu Red Ramen ($6) has a mild spicy kick that lingers in your mouth – perfect for those who are keen to inject some heat into their ramen.
Check out our full review of Buta Kin!
Address: 144 Upper Bukit Timah Road, #04-28, Beauty World Centre, Singapore 588177
Opening hours: Tues-Sun 11:30am to 8:30pm
Tel: 8661 60628
Buta Kin is not a halal-certified eatery.
8. Kazan Japanese Cuisine
At Kazan Japanese Cuisine, good quality food is paired with affordability and generous portions.
You’ll be hard-pressed to find anywhere that serves Unagi Don with such an impressive portion at just $8. The unagi is steeped in a rich teriyaki sauce and broiled to a supple tenderness.
Their Oyakodon ($5) is another noteworthy option, with a chicken katsu lathered in a savoury caramelised onion and egg sauce.
Check out our full review of Kazan Japanese Cuisine!
Address: 335 Smith Street, #02-001, Chinatown Complex Market & Food Centre, Singapore 050335
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 12pm to 8:30pm, Sun 12pm to 6:30pm
Tel: 8455 5229
Kazan Japanese Cuisine is not a halal-certified eatery.
9. Donya Japanese Cuisine
Housed in a kopitiam under an HDB block, Donya Japanese Cuisine serves up Japanese food found almost exclusively in restaurants.
For those who crave an indulgent maki without burning a hole in the pocket, try their Mentai Maki ($5.80). Mentaiko sauce is slathered over the rice and torched to a gorgeous sear providing a meaty contrast to the light avocado slices.
You can even up the ante by ordering the equally affordable Salmon Mentai Don ($8.80), which has a large slice of salmon topped with the same delicious mentaiko sauce.
Check out our full review of Donya Japanese Cuisine!
10. Konomi Zen
Portions at Konomi Zen are huge. At just $6, the Salmon Bento Set gives you a gigantic slice of salmon, seared to a nice char.
Their Tendon ($5) features a combination of seafood and vegetable tempura nested on fluffy Japanese rice. Those crispy fried bits on the tempura provide so much texture, giving a nice crunch on every bite.
Their Chicken Udon is even more affordable at $3.50. Perfectly cooked strands of udon absorb the aromatic broth, and is brimming with chicken flavour.
Check out our full review of Konomi Zen!
Address: 628 Ang Mo Kio Avenue 4, #01-59, Ang Mo Kio 628 Market & Food Centre, Singapore 560628
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 11am to 8pm
Tel: 9734 8875
Konomi Zen is not a halal-certified eatery.
11. Washoku Goen
Washoku Goen was opened by the same people behind Goen Udon. Just like the latter, you’re sure to get your money’s worth here.
Their Japanese Yakisoba is priced affordably at $4.80. Cabbage, onions and a generous portion of pork belly are stir-fried with Japanese Worcestershire sauce to ensure that every mouthful packs a punch of flavour. There’s also the Unagi Tamago Don ($8.80) that’s brimming with chunks of eel, all tucked in a fluffy layer of egg.
Check out our full review of Washoku Goen!
Address: 9 Bishan Place, #04-01, Stall 6, Food Junction, Singapore 579837
Opening hours: Daily 10am to 10pm
Washoku Goen is not a halal-certified eatery.
12. Japanese Curry Express
Japanese Curry Express is a favourite amongst those who frequent the Bencoolen district, thanks to their large portions and pocket-friendly prices. Here, ladles of Japanese curry douse the Pork Katsu Curry Rice ($7.50) in a thick golden blanket. The katsu is the main star, featuring a crunchy panko crust encasing a juicy slab of pork.
Their Smoked Duck Ramen ($7.50) is also worth a shot with a generous portion of smoked duck complementing the light ramen broth.
Check out our full review of Japanese Curry Express!
Address: 190 Middle Road, #03-04, Fortune Centre, Singapore 188979
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 11:30am to 3pm, 4:30pm to 8:30pm
Tel: 9689 6314
Japanese Curry Express is not a halal-certified eatery.
If you’re studying near Bencoolen, head to Gyunion for cheap halal Japanese rice bowls. Their Gyu-don, for instance, costs $7.90 and features heaps of beef slices cooked in a sweet shoyu sauce. Chicken Curry Don ($7.50) is another noteworthy selection. Mellow sweetness imparted from the carrots complements the slight tinge of heat from the spice mix.
Check out our full review of Gyunion!
Address: 91 Bencoolen Street, #01-23, Sunshine Plaza, Singapore 189652
Opening hours: Daily 11am to 3pm, 4pm to 10pm
Gyunion is a Muslim-owned eatery.
14. Takagi Ramen
Image credit: Takagi Ramen Facebook page
Takagi Ramen was founded because the owner wanted to show that good quality yet affordable ramen can be possible in Singapore. Now, it’s the go-to ramen restaurant for most people in Singapore.
At just $6.90, the Takagi Ramen Bowl is both affordable and tasty. The broth used is simmered for hours, allowing it to develop a velvety silkiness. Their Black Tonkotsu Ramen ($7.90) uses their house-made black garlic, which gives it a potent wave of umami.
Address: 1 Pasir Ris Close, #02-316, Downtown East E!Avenue, Singapore 519599
Opening hours: Daily 11:30am to 10:30pm
Tel: 9138 8017
Website | Full list of outlets
Takagi Ramen is not a halal-certified eatery.
15. Wafu Japanese
Wafu Japanese Cuisine serves wallet-friendly Japanese food without skimping on quality. For instance, their hanjuku eggs and ramen broth are made fresh daily.
If you’re feeling really hungry, get the Curry Omelette Pork Katsu Rice ($8.90) that comes in a huge portion with tons of pork katsu and golden brown curry.
The Abura Ramen ($6.90) is another showstopper with its bold flavours. This dry ramen comprises miso pork, onsen egg, lard and seasoning that’s mixed well to form a beautiful, creamy sauce.
Check out our full review of Wafu Japanese Cuisine!
Address: 913 Stamford Road, #B1-20/27, Capitol Piazza, Singapore 178905
Opening hours: Daily 11am to 10pm
Wafu Japanese Cuisine is not a halal-certified eatery.
Cheap but quality eats
Quality Japanese meals and affordable prices are not mutually exclusive. In fact, some of the best ramen and chirashi dons I’ve had were from this list.