Best Johor Bahru hawker food
We Singaporeans love our hawker food, but the Malaysians will always say they do it better. It’s a perennial debate about which side of the Causeway does hawker fare best, so here are some of the best Johor Bahru hawker food stalls to put on your list, so you can decide for yourself.
Table of Contents
- Best Johor Bahru hawker food
- 1. Din Kee Beef Noodle
- 2. Wah Cai 3-in-1 Chinese Cake
- 3. Restoran Woon Kiang
- 4. Kedai Masakan Itik Taika Huat
- 5. Restoran Lai Kee
- 6. Kedai Bak Kut Teh Hin Hock
- 7. Kedai Roti Dan Kek Kedai Kek Siang Yong
- 8. Restoran Tai Chiang
- 9. G. Cheong Fun Restaurant
- 10. Restoran Wantan Mee DS
- 11. Restoran Hua Mui JB
- 12. Bukit Changar Roti Canai
- 13. Fa Ge Lok Lok
- 14. Restoran Ya Wang
- 15. Warung Saga
- 16. Salahuddin Bakery
- 17. Nasi Ayam Kee Chup
- 18. Zainal’s Place
- Johor Bahru hawker food guide
1. Din Kee Beef Noodle
Din Kee Beef Noodle has been around since 2007, and they do beef noodles oh so well. Your choices are simple: pick a noodle, the beef bits you want, and then decide if you prefer it in soup, or dry. Prices here start from RM8.50/~S$2.80 for the simplest bowls of Braised Meat, or Braised Meat + Tripe. If you want it all, that’s Braised Meat + Tripe + Tendon + Fresh Meat, priced at RM14/~S$4.50—we were told that price revisions are due, so be prepared to fork out a little bit more.
The beef broth is prepared fresh daily, and is minimally boiled for five hours, resulting in a bodied, meaty stock, accented with Sour Pickled Mustard (RM1/~S$0.40) to serve. If you can’t decide, we recommend getting the dry with thick bee hoon, plus crunchy roasted Peanut (RM1/~S$0.40), tossed in an addictive blend of shallot oil, dark soya sauce, and a thick beef gravy.
Address: 56, Jalan Indah 1, Taman Bukit Indah, 81200 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Fri-Wed 8am to 3pm
Tel: +60 16-736 1522
Din Kee Beef Noodle is not a halal-certified eatery
2. Wah Cai 3-in-1 Chinese Cake
Sandwiched between Restoran Lai Kee and Kedai Roti Dan Kek Kedai Kek Siang Yong is Wah Cai 3-in-1 Chinese Cake, a takeaway-only stand that sees long queues throughout the day. Even if you get in the queue, there’s a chance that you might have to return later to pick up your order: consider yourself warned.
They’re named for their star product: a Fried Chinese New Year Cake with Sweet Potato & Yam (RM2.50/~S$0.80) that sees nian gao stuck between a slice each of sweet potato and yam, battered, and fried a la goreng pisang—which Malaysians will tell you is meant to be pisang goreng. You can get Fried Banana (RM1.50/~S$0.50) here too, alongside Fried Cempedak (RM4/~S$1.30) and Fried Durian (RM4.50/~S$1.50).
Address: 86, Jalan Pahlawan 2, Taman Ungku Tun Aminah, 81300 Skudai, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Mon, Wed-Fri 11am to 4pm, Sat-Sun 9am to 4pm
Tel: +60 19-750 5616
Wah Cai 3-in-1 Chinese Cake is not a halal-certified eatery
3. Restoran Woon Kiang
If you like kway chap, chances are, you’ll find Restoran Woon Kiang to be right up your alley. This popular street-side eatery is loved for its kway teow kia, AKA skinny, long kway teow, and also for the fact that they’re open till the wee hours of the morning.
Simply walk up to the counter and pick your ingredients, which include the usual suspects of braised duck, offal, braised pork belly, and so on; they’ll get chopped up and sent over to your table. Even if you aren’t a fan of the innards, give the kway teow kia a try—it’s ultra-thin, silky, and smooth, and goes super well with the broth.
Address: Jalan Pandan 2, Taman Stulang, 80300 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Daily 9:30am to 3:30am
Tel: +60 7-220 0310
Restoran Woon Kiang is not a halal-certified eatery
4. Kedai Masakan Itik Taika Huat
Taika Huat has come a long way since its beginnings in 1973 as a braised duck stall. Today, the eatery is still in the hands of their family, in an open shop space under a zinc roof that’s built around a number of huge trees. These towering green giants are said to have been planted back when the stall was first founded.
Besides the Teochew-style braised Duck Meat (from RM11/~S$3.60) and Duck Wings (RM3.50/~S$1.20 for four), you can get Duck Web, Duck Tongue (RM10/~S$3.20), and a surprisingly delectable braised Pig Trotter (RM40/~S$12.90 for half), which is wobbly in all the right places, and meltingly tender. You can have this all with rice, of course, but the dry Kuehteow (RM2/~S$0.70) is not one to skip.
Address: MY Johor Skudai Jalan Batu 8½ near Lee Pineapple Factory and SJK Kuo Kuang school Jalan Kilang Nenas, 81300, Malaysia
Opening hours: Daily 8:30am to 4pm
Tel: +60 17-763 2188
Kedai Masakan Itik Taika Huat is not a halal-certified eatery
5. Restoran Lai Kee
Another long-time institution that the locals flock to is Restoran Lai Kee, where the fishballs are still made fresh by hand daily. Unlike the store-bought variety that’s full of flour, flavourings, and other additives, the ones here are 100% ikan parang with a dash of salt for taste.
A bowl of Fishball Noodles, at RM7/~S$2.30, comes with fish cake, sliced pork, fishballs, and a fried version of the same fishball, that has a more intense flavour. Have it in soup, or dry, tossed with dark soya sauce and chilli. You’ll see that every table has a portion of Fried Beancurd Skin (RM5/~S$1.60), which you can snack on while waiting for your noodles.
Address: Taman Ungku Tun Aminah, Jalan Pahlawan 2, 81300 Skudai, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Thurs-Tue 7am to 4:30pm
Tel: +60 19-715 9866
Restoran Lai Kee is not a halal-certified eatery
6. Kedai Bak Kut Teh Hin Hock
Located in Tampoi, Kedai Bak Kut Teh Hin Hock is more well-known for its Poached Fish (market price) rather than the Claypot Bak Kut Teh (from RM15/~S$4.80). Unlike the peppery bak kut teh we’re more familiar with, this is strongly perfumed with the taste of Chinese liquorice—an orange peel-like flavour that’s a rather acquired taste.
Apart from the Poached Fish, liberally drenched in their blend of soya sauce and loads of fried garlic, there’s Minced Meat Tofu (RM7/~S$2.30), another simple yet tasty dish of tofu topped with a flavourful meat sauce.
Address: 72, Jalan Dato Mohammed Seth, Taman Tampoi Indah 2, 81200 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Tue-Sun 9:30am to 4:30pm
Tel: +60 19-779 3434
Kedai Bak Kut Teh Hin Hock is not a halal-certified eatery
7. Kedai Roti Dan Kek Kedai Kek Siang Yong
For traditional Chinese pastries, look no further than Kedai Roti Dan Kek Kedai Kek Siang Yong, an institution that’s been churning out tau sa piah, or Green Bean Paste Pastry (RM1.20/~S$0.40), Heong Peah Pastry (RM1.90/~S$0.60) and more for more than 30 years.
That’s not to say that they haven’t got more novel creations too: the Dried Shrimp Coconut Pastry (RM1.40/~S$0.50) and Pandan Kaya Puff (RM1.40/~S$0.50), as well as Mini Chicken Floss with Green Bean Paste Pastry (RM0.70/~S$0.30) have turned out to be bestselling items too.
Address: No. 78, A, Jalan Pahlawan 2, Taman Ungku Tun Aminah, 81300 Skudai, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Thurs-Tue 8am to 5:30pm
Tel: +60 12-972 0915
Kedai Roti Dan Kek Kedai Kek Siang Yong is not a halal-certified eatery
8. Restoran Tai Chiang
If you’re being pedantic about it, Restoran Tai Chiang is not located in JB—but it’s close enough to the Johor Premium Outlets to warrant a pitstop here before you head to your shopping frenzy. They’ve been serving kaya toast and kopi since 1970, and to date still make their own kaya, roast their own beans, and toast their bread over charcoal.
Order yourself a Kopi (from RM2.80/~S$0.90) for a perk-me-up, though you might want to ask for it less sweet. On the Roti front, you can get Keping, or sliced bread, at RM1.80/~S$0.60, or a Bun for RM2.50/~S$0.80. Then, opt for it to be bakar, AKA toasted, or steamed. Complete the meal with Telur (RM1.20/~S$0.40), for kampong chicken eggs.
Address: 7, Jalan Jelawat, Taman Sri Saleng, 81400 Kulai, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Wed-Mon 7am to 2pm
Tel: +60 12-789 9787
Restoran Tai Chiang is not a halal-certified eatery
9. G. Cheong Fun Restaurant
Making up your mind at G. Cheong Fun Restaurant might prove to be a tough one, because not only are there six cheong fun to choose from, you can even zhng-up your CCF with house-made yong tau foo.
All the cheong fun here is made in-house with freshly-milled rice flour, and is served slightly cool to preserve the integrity of the noodles. The most unique is Anson (RM5.50/~S$1.80), where preserved turnip, hei bee, and shallots are steamed into the cheong fun itself. There’s also Kampar Curry (RM3/~S$1), Red Sweet Sauce (RM3/~S$1), Black Sweet Sauce (RM3/~S$1), or Scallion Oil (RM3/~S$1), a savoury, fragrant dish.
Address: 176, Jalan Pahlawan 2, Taman Ungku Tun Aminah, 81300 Skudai, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Tue-Sun 6:30am to 4pm
Tel: +60 18-473 4118
G. Cheong Fun Restaurant is not a halal-certified eatery
10. Restoran Wantan Mee DS
Cheap and good wonton mee is the name of the game at Restoran Wantan Mee DS, where they even make their egg noodles—available in mee pok or mee kia—on the premises. Prices here start at RM5.80/~S$1.90 for a bowl of BBQ Pork noodles, where you’ll get a massive serving of noodles with fatty char siew, fried, and boiled wonton. Alternatively, it’s RM4.80/~S$1.60 for Minced Pork noodles, which replaces the char siew with minced pork.
The default is KL-style, black sauce wonton mee, but you can also request for the Traditional white style. Help yourself to hei bee sambal—it’s real good—and house-fried pork lard to make the noodles even better. On the side, you can add on Fried Wantan (RM4.50/~S$1.50 for 10 pieces), Dumpling Soup (RM1.50/~S$0.20 for one piece), or Fish-flavoured Toufu (RM2/~S$0.70 for one piece).
Address: 3, Jalan Seri Impian 1, Taman Impian Emas, 81300 Skudai, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Fri-Wed 7:30am to 8pm
Tel: +60 16-660 5498
Restoran wantan Mee DS is not a halal-certified eatery
11. Restoran Hua Mui JB
If you’ve already been to the other famous chicken chop place in JB, consider Restoran Hua Mui JB next. They were founded in 1946, which means they’ve been making their Hainanese-style dishes for more than 70 years!
With a dizzying number of dishes on the menu spanning nasi lemak, mee rebus and more, we recommend you focus on the Hainanese Chicken Chop (RM17.90/~S$5.80). You must dip it in the accompanying brown sauce for maximum enjoyment, and finish the meal with Kopi Cincau (RM4.50/~S$1.50)—it’s just the right amount of sweet and rich, with fine shreds of grass jelly for texture.
Address: 131, Jalan Trus, Bandar Johor Bahru, 80000 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Daily 8:30am to 5:30pm (last order at 5pm)
Tel: +60 7-224 7364
Restoran Hua Mui JB is not a halal-certified eatery
12. Bukit Changar Roti Canai
Bukit Changar Roti Canai can be the first pitstop of your JB trip as it is just an eight-minute stroll from the customs. Keep your sharp elbows up! Just like the situation at the customs, some jostling is needed at this perpetually crowded prata joint.
You will get to see the “open-concept” kitchen hum with activity like a well-oiled machine. Watch in anticipation as the soft white dough transforms into a beautiful golden brown as it hits the heated pan. Each prata kosong—or better known in Malaysia as roti canai—is only RM1/~S$0.40! For a more hearty breakfast, order their egg roti canai (RM2/~S$0.70) instead.
Address: 394 Jalan Tengku Azizah, Bukit Chagar, 80300 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Daily 6:45am to 11am
Bukit Changar Roti Canai is a halal-certified eatery
13. Fa Ge Lok Lok
Lok lok is synonymous with late-night supper haunts in JB. Open daily from 7pm to the wee hours of 4am, Fa Ge Lok Lok is the place to go for these tasty skewers. Other than its humourous name, what we love about this food truck is its extensive array of skewers priced from RM1.50/~S$0.50.
Follow these steps if you haven’t had lok lok before:
- Pick from over 50 kinds of skewers including bacon rolls, wontons, and mantou.
- Separate the skewers according to how you want it—deep-fried, grilled, or boiled.
- Take a styrofoam box and fill it up with your choice of peanut sauce, Thai chilli sauce, sweet sauce, or garlic ginger chilli sauce.
Address: 74 Jalan Abiad, Taman Pelangi, 80400 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Daily 7pm to 4am
Tel: +60 7-335 2020
Fa Ge Lok Lok is not a halal-certified eatery
14. Restoran Ya Wang
Restoran Ya Wang is so well-known amongst JB troopers that there almost wasn’t a need for me to include it in this list. The restaurant is known as the official consultant behind Dian Xiao Er’s Ten Wonder Herbs Roast Duck, so ordering their Ten Herbal Roast Duck (RM43/~S$13.80 for half) should already be a no brainer.
The robustly flavoured herbal sauce was so rich that I felt I could be nursed back to health with a single sip. Every bite is a delicious sequence of crisp fat-lined skin, followed by a burst of duck juices from the tender meat.
Address: 28 Jalan Segget, 80000 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Thurs-Tue 8am to 6pm
Tel:+60 7-224 8624
Restoran Ya Wang is not a halal-certified eatery
15. Warung Saga
If you’re looking for a hearty meal, Warung Saga is one eatery you must visit. Operating since 1986, the eatery might be hidden in plain sight, but its food and ambience make it stand out from its neighbours.
Besides classic Malay dishes such as Nasi Lemak (RM3/~S$1), Warung Saga also serves an interesting version of dry lontong that is unique to JB. Known as Lontong Kering (RM6/~S$2), the dish features ketupat rice dunked in a fragrant peanut sambal sauce, topped with stir-fried vegetables, tempeh, and a huge chunk of chicken. According to hearsay, this breakfast staple sells out by 11am, so make sure to head down first thing in the morning.
Address: 5 Jalan Mahamoodiah, 80100 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Sat 7am to 12pm, 5:30pm to 11pm, Sun-Thurs 7am to 2:30pm, 5:30pm to 11pm
Tel: +60 12-782 9427
Warung Saga is a halal-certified eatery
16. Salahuddin Bakery
Salahuddin Bakery remains one of the few places persevering to make their food the traditional way. Opened since 1937, they still use a wood-fired baking oven to bake everything from bread to even cakes. Just an eight-minute walk from Johor Bahru City Square, the bakery makes for a great pitstop to buy some goodies back home.
This old gem offers over 25 kinds of pastry or bread. You won’t go wrong with their Karipap Potato (RM1.50/~S$0.50) or Karipap Chicken (RM2/~S$0.70), which are filled with mashed potato peppered with spices between smokey layers of puff pastry. Kids will also love nibbling on some Sugar Puffs (RM2/~S$0.70) which hit the sweet spot just fine.
Address: 26, Jalan Dhoby, 80000 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Sat-Thurs 9am to 6pm
Tel: +60 12-766 8380
Salahuddin Bakery is a halal-certified eatery
17. Nasi Ayam Kee Chup
Image credit: @menu.inf
Although not a heritage stall like many of the others on this list, Nasi Ayam Kee Chup has gained traction for its crisp fried chicken leg, served with chicken rice. A Nasi Ayam Satu Set is priced at RM12/~S$3.90, or you can get just the house-marinated leg, Ayam Kee Chup (Tambah) for RM7.50/~S$2.30. Plain chicken rice, or Nasi Tambah, is chargeable at RM2.50/~S$0.80.
Address: 24A, Jalan Dato Dalam, Bandar Johor Bahru, 80000 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Wed-Mon 11am to 4pm
Tel: +60 19-669 2133
Nasi Ayam Kee Chup is a halal-certified eatery
18. Zainal’s Place
Image credit: @fatbandits
The history behind each plate of Mee Rebus (RM8/~S$2.60) at Zainal’s Place dates all the way back to 1918, although Zainal’s Place as we know it was founded in 1977. They’re also super popular with the local crowd, many of whom say they serve the best mee rebus around.
The version here is said to be less starchy, yet it retains that gooey finish we associate with the Javanese noodle dish. It’s also got hints of peanut, without being too spicy, sweet, or tangy—the signature finishing touch is a splash of vinegar and a smattering of crunchy, savoury bits. If you’re up for a treat, go for the Mee Rebus Tulang Gearbox (RM20/~S$6.50), which comes with a whole mutton bone stuck with a straw for your convenience!
Address: 89, Jalan Keris, Taman Sri Tebrau, 80050 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Opening hours: Sat-Thurs 8am to 5:30pm
Tel: +60 7-334 1325
Zainal’s Place is a halal-certified eatery
Johor Bahru hawker food guide
Arm yourself with this list of cheap and good hawker food and be the foodie everyone turns to for food recommendations in JB.
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This article was originally written on 8 October 2019.
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