Maxwell Food Centre Guide: 25 Must-Try Hawker Stalls To Eat At |
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25 Maxwell Food Centre Stalls Including Green Chilli Chicken Rice And Famous Ondeh-Ondeh

26th August 2022

Maxwell Food Centre guide

Working in the CBD doesn’t necessarily mean eating atas salads and sipping on Starbucks all day long. There is plenty of affordable hawker fare around the area in places like Amoy Street Food Centre at Telok Ayer, and of course, Maxwell Food Centre near Tanjong Pagar.  As this heritage hawker centre gets busy over lunch, options can be overwhelming, so here’s our list of stalls we think you shouldn’t miss when you’re at Maxwell Food Centre!

1. Old Nonya

Maxwell Food Centre Old Nonya

Around since 1960, Old Nonya does homely Peranakan dishes. Get your money’s worth and order the Rendang Chicken ($6) rice set, which comes with a huge juicy chicken drumstick that’s well-coated in a rich, coconutty sauce, a side of achar, and fried bean curd skin. While I didn’t get to try it, the Laksa ($4/$5) is supposed to be creamier and better than the other options in Maxwell.

Unit number: #01-04
Opening hours: Thurs-Tue 10:30am to 8:30pm
Tel: 8366 9311

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2. Sisaket Thai Food

Sisaket Thai Food
Image credit: @mrdidijiak

Sisaket Thai Food does authentic, tasty Thai fare. Their creamy Green Curry Rice ($5) is decadent and rich, and goes perfectly with rice. Another addictive item is their sweet-savoury Phad Thai ($5), full of wok hei, while the Basil Chicken/Beef with Rice ($5.50/$6.50) is fiery hot. If you wish to dine with your family after work, you will be glad to know they also do Thai-style zi char.

Unit number: #01-85
Opening hours: Daily 9am to 8pm

3. Zhen Zhen Porridge

Zhen Zhen Porridge

Image credit: @nusfatclub

Zhen Zhen Porridge has commanded loyal queues for over 20 years with its Cantonese-style chok that boasts a thick and creamy consistency. Despite its popularity and long-standing history, prices are still kept low at $3 for a bowl generously topped with ingredients. Go for their Sliced Fish with Shredded Chicken and Century Egg ($3) to get the best of everything, and top-up $0.50 for an extra egg!

Unit number: #01-54
Opening hours: Wed, Fri-Mon 5:30am to 2:30pm

4. Yi Jia Chao Zhou Yu Zhou

Maxwell Food Centre Yi Jia Chou Zhou Yu Zhou
Image credit: @minhizzzle

Directly translated, Yi Jia Chou Zhou Yu Zhou means “one house Teochew fish porridge fish soup”. The stall sees a constantly long queue at lunch hour, and no wonder. Order their Batang Fish ($3) and be treated to a delicate broth boasting chunks of silky smooth fish slices, with firm grains of rince. It’s also topped with fried shallots and fresh coriander for extra fragrance.

Unit number: #01-66
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 11am to 7:45pm

5.  Nian Nian You Yu

maxwell food centre - nian nian you yu (1)Image credit: @nianianyouyu

Run by a 28-year-old chef who previously worked in one Michelin-starred Sommer, Nian Nian You Yu specialises in serving steamed fish—for solo diners. Choose between sea bass or pomfret, which is steamed HK-style with soya sauce for $6.50 a set, which comes with soup and rice. Top up $1 for a sour-spicy Thai-style sauce instead.

If you’re here with friends, consider getting the Steamed Tiger Prawns with Lala & Vermicelli ($8.50) and Seared Eggplant ($3) to share too!

Unit number: #01-78
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 11:30am to 2pm, 5pm to 7:30pm (or sold out)

6. Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice

Tian Tian Chicken Rice

Everyone knows Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice, and for good reason too. They hold a Michelin Bib Gourmand award for their lip-smacking chicken rice, and celebrity chefs such as Gordon Ramsey and the late Anthony Bourdain have eaten here.

Their rice is fragrant, and the chicken is succulent. They are the most popular chicken rice stall in Singapore known to locals and tourists, with branches even in Hong Kong. Even so, prices here start from a friendly $5.

Unit number: #01-10/11
Opening hours: Tue-Sun 10am to 7:30pm
Tel: 9691 4852

7. Maxwell Fu Zhou Oyster Cake

Maxwell Food Centre Maxwell Fu Zhou Oyster Cake
Image credit: @kevinfmlim

Maxwell Fu Zhou Oyster Cake ($2) is one of the few stalls serving this soon-to-be-extinct heritage snack. Encased in the golden-brown fried cake are succulent oysters, prawns, and minced meat. Cilantro is also added to cut through any oiliness. The magic of this Fuzhou dish is its batter, which is made of a combination of ground rice and flour, resulting in an airy and crisp bite.

Unit number: #01-06
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 9am to 8pm
Tel: 9344 1296

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8. Green Leaf

Maxwell Food Centre Green Leaf

Green Leaf does comforting Malay dishes such as Mee Rebus (from $3.50) and Laksa ($4.50). Prices are all kept below $5 here, and it is probably the cheapest Malay food stall in Maxwell Food Centre. Come here for their Soto Ayam ($3.50), boasting thick cuts of rice cakes, chunks of marinated fried chicken, and a tantalising sweet broth.

Unit number: #01-100
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 7am to 8pm

9. 75 China Street Peanuts Soup

Maxwell Food Centre Peanut Soup (2)

Not to be confused with 75 Ah Balling, 75 China Street Peanuts Soup only serves three things: their best-selling peanut soup, red bean soup, and tau suan, all of which are priced at only $1.20. The stall has been around for more than 70 years, now run by a pair of third-gen husband-and-wife team who make all three desserts from scratch. 

Be sure to top up $1.60/$2 for glutinous rice balls filled with either sesame or toasty ground peanut, although these are factory-made. 

Unit number: #01-57
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 7:30am to 4pm

10. China Street Fritters

maxwell food centre - china street frittersImage credit: @jiamtaorotee

China Street Fritters has been around for close to 80 years, serving Hokkien-style ngoh hiang, liver rolls, and more—all of which are still handmade by the second-gen owner and his family. Earlier this year, they tried to sell their recipe, but failed to do so.

They’re one of the last few stalls in Singapore that still make handmake this style of ngoh hiang, which you can order in a set for $4.30. Get it with plain fried bee hoon ($6), or a larger set with two plates of bee hoon to share with a friend ($10.30).

Unit number: #01-64
Opening hours: Selected days 12pm to 7pm (not fixed)
Tel: 9239 6464

11. MS Dessert Shop 

ms dessert maxwell - tau suanImage credit: @msdessertshop

Another spot for tau suan in Maxwell Food Centre is MS Dessert Shop, a relatively new opening that sells almost everything on their menu for just $1.30. This includes tau suan, bubur terigu, red, and green bean soups. The exception is their Peach Gum Dessert ($2.50), which is also served as a larger bowl than the other desserts.

Unit number: #01-68
Opening hours: Daily 9am to 8:30pm
Tel: 9229 9220

12. Tong Xin Ju Special Shanghai Tim Sum

Tong Xin Ju Special Shanghai Tim Sum-Flatlay of dumplings

Fourth-generation owner Sebastian Hu keeps his Shanghainese grandfather’s legendary guo tie recipe alive at Tong Xin Ju Special Shanghai Tim Sum, where the handmade fried dumplings ($4.80 for 8 pieces) steal the show with a special chilli sauce. For the same price, you could get them steamed, too. Have them with Hot & Sour Soup ($4/$5/$6), and Pei Jing Noodle/Hor Fun ($4/$5/$6) for a complete meal.

Read our review of Tong Xin Ju.

Unit number: #01-92
Opening hours: Tue, Thurs-Sun 11:30am to 8:30pm
Tel: 9662 3501

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13. China Street Hum Jin Pang

maxwell food centre - china street hum jin pangImage credit: @random.mmmusings

At just $1 for six pieces, the dough fritters at China Street Hum Jin Pang are extra affordable. These traditional fried snacks are the only item on the menu here, and come in two variants: Red Bean, and Five Spice Powder. The first is stuffed with a centre of sweet tau sa, while the latter is plain, with a savoury dash of powder to finish.

For extra novelty, you can even fry these hum jin pang yourself!

Unit number: #01-28
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 3pm to 8pm, Sat 4pm to 8pm, Sun 3:30pm to 8pm

14. Fu Shun Jin Ji Shao La Mian Jia

Fu Shun Shao La Mian Jia

Image credit: @rollingape_

This roast meat specialist is popular for its outstanding char siew, siew yok and roast duck, served with rice or QQ Hong Kong-style noodles (from $3.50). The queue at Fu Shun Jin Ji Shao La Mian Jia usually starts forming before they open for the day at noon, so go early!

Unit number: #01-71
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 10:30am to 8pm

15. Hup Kee Wu Xiang Guan Chang

Hup Kee Wu Xiang Guan Chang

Image credit: @jiamtaorotee

Another heritage stall that has been around since before the 1940s, Hup Kee Wu Xiang Guan Chang is one of the only Hokkien ngoh hiang stalls still standing. Unlike the more common Teochew-style ngoh hiang, Hokkien ngoh hiang has no mashed yam in the meat rolls, or prawn fritters. Not all of these ngoh hiang are handmade in the stall, but prices start from a very affordable $0.80 per piece.

Unit number: #01-97
Opening hours: Thurs-Tue 11:30am to 6pm
Tel: 8113 7015

16. Jin Hua Fish Head Bee Hoon

Jin Hua Fish Head Bee Hoon

Image credit: @bittersweet.verve

Prices at Jin Hua Fish Head Bee Hoon start from $4.50 for Cantonese-style fish soup that’s rich with flavour. For extra creaminess, ask them to add evaporated milk to your bowl of soup! You can choose between sliced and fried fish pieces, although I personally prefer the latter. Have it as is, or with your choice of rice or noodles.

Unit number: #01-77
Opening hours: Fri-Wed 11:30am to 8:30pm

17. Xing Xing Ondeh Ondeh

Xing Xing Ondeh Ondeh
Image credit: @vanessa_kou

Xing Xing Ondeh Ondeh has been in business in Maxwell Food Centre for more than 40 years, selling traditional homemade kueh that are often sold out before the stall closes. They’re most well-known for their ondeh ondeh ($3), with an oozy gula melaka centre and coated with fresh grated coconut, although their selection of other kueh is also stellar.

Unit number: #01-31
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 7am to 1pm
Tel: 9863 2833

18. Ye Lai Xiang Tasty Barbecue

Ye Lai Xiang Tasty Barbecue

Image credit: @rockysam382

Come to Ye Lai Xiang Tasty Barbecue for old-school Hainanese-Western food (from $8.50) the way it was first introduced to Singaporeans back in the 1970s. The meats—choose from chicken, pork, fish, lamb, or beef—here are served with the same signature brown sauce that was first created by the late Chef Leong while he was Head Chef in the British Navy. Each set comes with sides of crinkle-cut fries and a soft white bun, while baked beans only come with selected items on the menu.

Unit number: #01-94
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 12pm to 2:30pm, 6pm to 8pm

19. Chee Cheong Fun Club

Chee Cheong Fun Club
Image credit: @gnilray

Get KL-style curry chee cheong fun ($4) at Chee Cheong Fun Club, or go for their signature Hong Kong’s Memory Lane ($3.50), which tops its silky noodles with a house-made sauce that’s the combination of Singaporean sweet sauce, Malaysian black sauce, and Hong Kong sesame sauce. All their chee cheong fun is made fresh on the premises daily by hand with a family recipe.

Unit number: #01-38
Opening hours: Tue-Sat 7:30am to 2pm, Sun 8:30am to 2pm

20. Ah Tai Hainanese Chicken Rice

Ah Tai Chicken Rice

Just two stalls down from the famous Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice is Ah Tai Hainanese Chicken Rice, run by Wong Liang Tai, who was head cook at Tian Tian for more than 20 years. The queues here are considerably shorter, although Ah Tai has its fair share of fans as well. We tried both the stalls in Maxwell Food Centre, and prefer the steamed chicken here! In the spirit of competition, a plate of chicken rice here also starts from $5.

Unit number: #01-07
Opening hours: Thurs-Mon 11am to 7:30pm
Tel: 8137 6559

21. Fu Ji Fuzhou Fish Ball Wanton Noodles

maxwell food centre - fu ji fuzhou fish ball wanton noodlesImage credit: Royal Pears

Fu Ji Fuzhou Fish Ball Wanton Noodles is a long-time tenant at Maxwell Food Centre, with a history of more than 30 years. They’re known for their Spinach Mee ($4/$5/$6), which comes with super springy, jade-coloured egg noodles, wonton, and char siew. Their other claim to fame is Fu Zhou Fishball Rou Yan Soup ($5/$7), which comes with meat-filled fishballs. Get both wonton and Fuzhou fishballs in the Fu Zhou Fishball Wanton Mee ($4/$5/$7).

Unit number: #01-06
Opening hours: Sun-Fri 11:30am to 9pm
Tel: 9388 5723

22. Alimama Green Chilli Chicken Rice & Prawn Noodle

maxwell food centre - alimama green chilli chicken riceImage credit: @chiaksimi

Serving up authentic Indonesian nasi ayam panggang is Alimama Green Chilli Chicken Rice & Prawn Noodle, whose signature dish is their Green Chilli Chicken Rice ($6.50). Each portion of this comes with a whole chicken leg, re-fried to order, topped with house-made green sambal. There’s also Grilled Chicken Rice ($6.50), and Big Prawn with Lala Noodle ($5/$8), which you can have with soup, or dry.

Unit number: #01-09
Opening hours: Daily 11am to 8:30pm
Tel: 8484 3944

23. The 1950s Coffee 

1950 coffee group

The main branch of The 1950s Coffee is located at Chinatown Complex, and has even won itself a mention in the Singapore edition of the Michelin Guide—we even found they had the best kopi around. Here at Maxwell Food Centre, they’re open every day of the week. Go for the Iced Kopi ($1.70), which has a perfect ice-to-coffee ratio, or our writer’s personal pick, Kopi C Siew Dai ($1.30).

Unit number: #01-90
Opening hours: Daily 7am to 5pm

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24. Aftertaste Traditional Tutu Cake

maxwell food centre - aftertaste traditional tutu cakeImage credit: @jiakzeh

Get your tutu kueh fix at Aftertaste Traditional Tutu Cake, a relatively new stall in this food centre. They’re freshly made and served warm, in boxes of five for $3. Fillings-wise, choose from chocolate, or the classic peanut and coconut—the latter is said to be the one to go for, as the grated coconut is much juicier. They’ve got muah chee ($2) and tapioca cake ($2) too!

Unit number: #01-73
Opening hours: Fri-Wed 11am to 7pm
Tel: 8758 7373

25. Mr Appam


Head to Mr Appam to try the South Indian pancake that’s made with a fermented rice batter, and find yourself surprised by the sight of Vietnamese lady Nguyen Thi Kieu Hanh churning them out. The  Original Appam ($3 for two pieces) is the most basic version, while Princess Appam ($3.30 each) sees the addition of egg and cheese. Then, there’s Pandan Brown Sugar Coconut Appam ($2.80 each), which we enjoyed.

Unit number: #01-99
Opening hours: Wed-Mon 8am to 8pm

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What to eat at Maxwell Food Centre

Traditional or newfangled, there’s something in Maxwell Food Centre to tickle your food fancy. With its sprawling aisles and numerous stalls, there’s something for any kind of diet.

While you’re here, check out Dolc Patisserie for pretty desserts, or head to Fatbowls for affordable lunch bowls under $15!

Address: 1 Kadayanallur Street, Singapore 069184
Nearest MRT stations: Telok Ayer and Chinatown

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Featured image adapted from @foodiejjigae, @chefhanbao, @rockysam382, and @vanessa_kou

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