Tampines hawker food
We’ve long heard of the debate on which side of Singapore has the best food. To add fuel to this very entertaining fire, we’ve found 25 hidden Tampines hawker food gems to help East-siders prove their point, in addition to these Tampines cafes.
Whether or not the East side is really the best side, we’ll definitely be willing to travel across the island for these cheap Tampines hawker food.
1. Sticks ‘N’ Bowls
Sticks ‘N’ Bowls, a coffee shop stall run by a young trio of friends, brings the novelty of eating lok lok and donburi in a hawker setting. Each deep-fried skewer goes for $1, which you can choose to dip in their house-made chilli, sweet Thai chilli, or peanut sauce. They’re popular for their Mentaiko Salmon Rice Bowl ($8.50), a generously portioned dish of salmon over rice, slathered with creamy mentaiko sauce. However, our favourite was the Garlic Pork Belly Rice Bowl ($5), which came with heaps of garlic chips and deep-fried pork belly.
Read our Sticks ‘N’ Bowls review!
Address: 824 Tampines Street 81, #01-38, Singapore 520824
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 5pm to 3am, Sat-Sun 12pm to 3am
2. Old World Bakuteh
Originating from a coffee shop in Yishun is Old World Bakuteh, which has an outlet in Tampines. They’re famed for their Mixed Pig’s Organ Fried Porridge ($5), a wok hei-laden affair peppered with chewy offal within. While you’re here, be sure to try the Sliced Pork Braised Mee Sua ($5) too, exclusive to their Tampines outlet. As they are primarily a bak kut teh stall, their peppery, Teochew-style Pork Ribs Soup ($6) is also not to be missed out on.
Read our Old World Bakuteh review!
Address: 1 Tampines North Drive, #01-34, T-Space, Singapore 528559
Opening hours: Tue-Sun 10am to 8:30pm
Tel: 9388 5288
3. Ho Yun Tim Sum
Ho Yun Tim Sum is run by an ex-hotel chef from Hong Kong, so you know the dim sum here is legit. Here, crowd favourites include the Prawn Chee Cheong Fun, with silky rice rolls encasing juicy prawns, and a thick, comforting bowl of Century Egg Lean Pork Porridge, all priced under $5. You can also get a basket of deep-fried goodies, with four pieces going for $3.80, including Yam Fritter and Fried Spring Roll.
Read our Ho Yun Tim Sum review!
Address: Blk 419, Tampines Street 41, #01-80, Singapore 520419
Opening hours: Tue-Sun 7am to 7pm
4. Kuai San Dian Xin
Kuai San Dian Xin is one of the cheapest places for dim sum in Singapore, where every dish goes for $1.30. Good news for those dwelling in Tampines, as they have an outlet here too, open daily for 24 hours. We enjoyed the Fried Carrot Cake, as it’s fried to a delightful crisp, flavoured with hints of hae bee hiam. They also have a healthy selection of fluffy bao, including Coffee Pao and Custard Pao for those who want something sweet.
Read our first look at Kuai San Dian Xin!
Address: 878C Tampines Avenue 8, Singapore 520878
Opening hours: Daily 24 hours
5. Nasi Lemak Specialist
Image credit: @lickscreenfortaste
If you’re craving for nasi lemak, head down to Nasi Lemak Specialist. Here, a plate of coconut-flavoured basmati rice, served with ikan bilis, peanuts, otah, chicken wing, bergedil, and an egg, only goes for $5. Nasi lemak aside, they also have a selection of Malay dishes, including Lontong ($3) and Mee Rebus ($3).
Address: 137 Tampines Street 11, #01-14, Singapore 521137
Opening hours: Tue-Sun 7:30am to 1pm
Tel: 8233 6101
6. Fu Yuan Teochew Bak Chor Mee
Image credit: @misssene
Fu Yuan Teochew Bak Chor Mee will do the trick whenever you need a satisfying bowl of bak chor mee. This hawker food stall occupies a small section of a Tampines kopitiam, and serves Teochew-style BCM with mee pok and handmade dumplings. Teochew Bak Chor Mee ($3.50) includes sliced pork, liver, minced meat, meatballs and a full-flavoured soup. Plus, the dish is dressed in an addictive and fiery chilli sauce that has a hint of sweetness to it.
Address: 201C Tampines Street 21, Singapore 523201
Opening hours: Daily 5:30am to 3pm
7. Yummy Sarawak Kolo Mee
Image credit: @monkeymiafoody
Located at Tampines Round Market and Food Centre, Yummy Sarawak Kolo Mee serves some of the finest Sarawak hawker cuisine. They’re known for their signature Sarawak kolo mee, and they also offer wonton mee, spare ribs noodles, and chicken feet noodles.
Their Signature Sarawak Kolo Mee Set (from $5) is topped with generous amounts of fried and boiled wontons, char siew, and thick pieces of braised pork. Taste-wise, the noodles are far from Maggi mee because of their springy texture and packed flavour. The braised pork is also said to be really good, pairing well with the noodles.
Address: 137 Tampines Street 11, #01-45, Tampines Round Market and Food Centre, Singapore 521137
Opening hours: Daily 6am to 3pm
Tel: 9866 2244
8. Song Han Carrot Cake
Image credit: @cjiahong
Song Han Carrot Cake serves traditional handmade carrot cake that includes curry powder, resulting in a special blend of fried goodness. The curry taste is not overpowering or spicy, and gives the dish extra texture and flavour. The Curry Powder Carrot Cake ($2/3/4) is available in both black and white versions. The latter has a very light and soft texture, with each bite coming with a generous serving of small prawns. Do come early because it usually gets sold out pretty early!
Address: 137 Tampines Street 11, #01-07, Tampines Round Market and Food Centre, Singapore 521137
Opening hours: Tues–Sun 6am to 12pm
9. Al Mahboob Indian Rojak
Image credit: @chriskoh85
Located five minutes away from S-11 Food Court at Tampines MRT Station, Al Mahboob Indian Rojak has a variety of freshly prepared choices lined up at the front of its counter. You’ll find ingredients made from scratch, such as handmade dough balls and prawn fritters, ngoh hiang, tofu, and fishcakes. All these are fried before being garnished with onions and cucumbers.
Let’s not forget their highly addictive Indian rojak sauce which has a nice balance of sweet, spicy and savoury flavours. Prices here range from around $3.50 to $10 per head, and you can definitely pick enough ingredients to make you full.
Address: 300 Tampines Avenue 5, #01-02, Income @ Tampines Junction, Singapore 529653
Opening hours: Daily 12pm to 9pm
Tel: 6788 2257
10. 137 Lor Mee Prawn Mee
Image credit: Celeste Tan
Located just two stalls away from Song Han Carrot Cake, 137 Lor Mee Prawn Mee is popular for their lor mee and prawn noodles. Their Signature Lor Mee starts at $3, comprising a bowl of thick yellow noodles and gravy, topped with a generous portion of fried fish, fish fillet, and egg. The sauce is thick and fragrant with lots of garlic, without being overpowering.
Address: 137 Tampines Street 11, #01-09, Tampines Round Market and Food Centre, Singapore 521137
Opening hours: Daily 6:30am to 2pm
11. Mui Kee Hainanese Chicken Rice
Those living near Tampines Street 21 will be familiar with Mui Kee Hainanese Chicken Rice which always has long snaking queues on weekends. They’ve been here for close to seven years, and the quality has not changed one bit. Besides serving a mean plate of chicken rice, this stall also specialises in char siew rice which has a sweet and smoky finish. Each dish sets you back at around $3 to $4.
Address: 264 Tampines Street 21, Singapore 520264
Opening hours: Daily 9am to 3pm
12. Soi Thai Kitchen
Image credit: @thetrickortreat
Soi Thai Kitchen has a similar concept to Nakhon Kitchen, serving Thai dishes that are hard to come by in the East. These include the Beef Paneang with melt-in-the-mouth stewed beef, and Thai Yellow Ginger Chicken, flavoured with lime and ginger. A meal for two here can cost less than $25 with three dishes, so pop by if you’re up for some cheap Thai food! What’s more, they’re open till late, making for good supper grub.
Address: 824 Tampines Street 81, #01-28, Singapore 520824
Opening hours: Daily 11am to 2.30pm, 5:30pm to 2am
Tel: 6784 2421
13. Tokyo Western Food
Image credit: @jazz_in_april
Tokyo Western Food serves up a feisty selection of Western cuisine, with the usual fare of Chicken Chop ($6.50) and Pork Chop ($7). One thing you can be sure of is the quality of the meat, which is also well marinated, and served with generous portions of fries, baked beans and toast. It’s hidden in a kopitiam at Tampines Street 81, so keep an eye out for it if you’re in the area.
Address: 823A Tampines Street 81, Singapore 521823
Opening hours: Daily 12pm to 10pm
Tel: 9351 3077
14. Jin Hock Seafood
Most East-siders would be familiar with Jin Hock Seafood, especially for their much raved White Bee Hoon. Expect a generous portion of seafood such as sliced cuttlefish and prawns, topped with a moist bundle of white beehoon beneath a flavourful broth of eggs and vegetables. Aside from their White Bee Hoon, you can also order other common zi char dishes such as Homemade Toufu with Fried Enoki Mushrooms and Steamed Fish Head with Chai Poh. A few dishes and some carbs will set you back at under $20 per head.
Read our full review of Jin Hock Seafood!
Address: 844 Tampines Street 82, #01-131, Singapore 520844
Opening hours: Daily 11am to 2:30pm, 4pm to 11pm
Tel: 6787 4255
15. Shun Shun Prawn Noodles
Image credit: Ah Liang jiakjiakjiak
Aside from a generous serving of prawns and fishcakes per bowl, Shun Shun’s Prawn Noodles’ namesake dish boasts a rich broth, priced at $4. A large portion of fried shallots also adds fragrance to the dish. If you prefer it to be a lil’ spicier, add $0.50 to get the dry version.
Address: 824 Tampines Street 81, #01-38, Singapore 520824
Opening hours: Wed-Mon 7am to 2pm
16. Teo Kee Mushroom Minced Pork Noodle
Image credit: @keong8302
Although ‘mushroom minced pork noodle’ is in their name, Teo Kee Mushroom Minced Pork Noodle is best known for their Pork Ribs Noodles (from $4). The pork ribs are so tender that they easily yield to your chopsticks, letting you pull the meat clean off the bones. Coupled with the herbal five-spice noodles, the ribs make for a hearty breakfast bowl.
Their Mushroom Minced Meat Noodles (from $3) is a lighter breakfast option, served with minced pork and braised shiitake mushrooms in a light sauce.
Address: 137 Tampines Street 11, Tampines Round Market and Food Centre, #01-05, Singapore 522137
Opening hours: Wed-Sun 6am to 2pm
Tel: 9780 4181
17. Xing Ji 星记 Wanton Mee
Image credit: @yingyingeats
Xing Ji 星记 Wanton Mee serves up a mean plate of Wanton Mee (from $4), which you can pair either with sambal or ketchup. The sauce is well absorbed by the springy noodles, which are complemented by the generous servings of char siew and handmade wontons.
Xing Ji is also known for their spicy Curry Chicken Noodle (from $4), which comes with tender chicken meat.
Address: 137 Tampines Street 11, Tampines Round Market and Food Centre, #01-35, Singapore 521137
Opening hours: Sat-Mon, Thurs 6am to 1pm
Tel: 9822 9773
18. Ri Ri Sheng Mala Pot
Image credit: @that_dex
If you’re in the mood for a bowl of spicy mala for lunch or dinner, head down to Ri Ri Sheng Mala Pot, where you can get a mala bowl for three under $10! Be careful with the spiciness level that you choose though, as xiao la is strong enough to numb your mouth through and through.
Apart from mala, the stall also serves other Sichuan dishes on the side such as the Chong Qing Grilled Fish (from $18) that’s doused in piquant chilli oil and boiled over a portable stove.
Address: 823A Tampines Street 81, #01-02, Food Park, Singapore 521823
Opening hours: Sat-Tue, Thur 10am to 10pm, Fri 10am to 9pm
19. Granny’s Pancake
Image credit: Vincentfoodstagram’s Facebook page
Granny’s Pancake specialises in min jiang kueh (Chinese pancakes) which are baked on the spot. What you get is a piping hot pancake that’s tender and packed with a generous serving of the filling of your choice: peanut, coconut, red bean, or peanut butter. Each pancake cost less than a $1, making for a wallet-friendly snack too.
Address: 137 Tampines Street 11, #01-148, Kim San Leng Kopitiam, Singapore 521138
Opening hours: Daily 7:30am to 5pm
Tel: 9853 3533
20. Rajarani Thosai
Image credit: Md Haizan Abu Bakar
For a meal that’s on the healthier side, head down to Rajarani Thosai, which uses less oil in their thosai. Their Plain Thosai ($2) has crispy edges and a smooth centre that’s tender and moist even after being taken off the skillet. Other flavours of thosai are also available, such as Egg ($2.50) and Onion ($2.50).
Address: 137 Tampines Street 11, #01-33, Tampines Round Market & Food Centre, Singapore 521137
Opening hours: Thur-Tue 7am to 2:30pm
21. L32 Handmade Noodles
Image credit: @fudexperiments
Originally located in Geylang, L32 Handmade Noodles also has a branch at Tampines Central where you can find their signature Mee Hoon Kway ($4.80). Cooked in a robust and savoury broth, the thick and chewy flat noodles come paired with meat of your choice—such as minced pork, chicken, prawns, and fish balls. House-made chilli sauce is served on the side, for a spicy tang.
You can also opt for their you mian option, where the noodles are thinner and longer. Dry versions of the Mee Hoon Kway are also available, with the noodles coming doused in a savoury dark sauce with soup served on the side.
Check out our L32 Handmade Noodles review!
Address: 10 Tampines Central 1, #05-05, Tampines 1 Kopitiam, Singapore 529536
Opening hours: Daily 11:30am to 9:30pm
22. Hai Chang Fish Head Steamboat
Image credit: @thegeniejournal
Hai Chang Fish Head Steamboat serves Teochew-style fish head steamboats that are heated with charcoal instead of gas. This keeps the steamboats warm without overcooking the food.
These steamboats are packed with fried fish fins, Chinese yam, Napa cabbage, and fish. You can choose from three types of fish: Sea Bream, Red Snapper, and Pomfret. Prices start from around $20, depending on what type of fish you get. They are served in thick slices, which ensures that they remain firm even after being boiled in the steamboat.
Address: 137 Tampines Street 11, #01-03, Tampines Round Market and Food Centre, Singapore 521137
Opening hours: Tue-Sun 5:30pm to 9pm
Tel: 9663 7994
23. Botak Delicacy
Get yourself a comforting bowl of Cantonese congee at Botak Delicacy, starting from their Century Egg With Lean Meat Porridge ($4). Unlike other stores that use century egg as a garnish, Botak Delicacy incorporates it into the cooking process. This imbues the congee with a well-rounded aroma, along with an irresistible medley of flavours.
They also whip up a great bowl of Fish Porridge ($4.50) that’s made with fresh Batang fish, which gives the congee a burst of brininess.
Read our full review of Botak Delicacy!
Address: 1 Tampines Avenue, #01-65, The Hawker Centre @ Our Tampines Hub, Singapore 529684
Opening hours: Daily 7am to 10:30pm
Tel: 9021 8211
24. Yi Le Shu Shi
Image credit: @allsgoodfood
There’s nothing like economic bee hoon to start your day right, and you can get this local breakfast fix at Yi Le Shu Shi. A plate of bee hoon starts at $1, and you can load it with ingredients such as fried egg, fish fillet, and sausage. They also have a selection of kuehs available, including the pink-hued Rice Cake ($1), aka png kueh, or Soon Kueh ($1), packed with turnip and dried shrimp.
Address: 137A Tampines Street 11, #01-10, Tampines Round Market Food Centre, Singapore 522137
25. House of Dessert 甜品之家
Image credit: House of Dessert’s Facebook page
If you’re bored of the usual BBTs, try the traditional desserts at House of Dessert 甜品之家. Their Tau Suan ($1.50) comes highly recommended; the beans are steamed just right to ensure that they have a chewy texture when bitten into. There’s also Bubor Pulut Hitam ($1.50), made rich with coconut milk.
Address: 137 Tampines Street 11, Tampines Round Market and Food Centre, #01-21, Singapore 521137
Opening hours: Tue-Wed, Fri-Sun 7am to 3pm
Tampines hawker food you must try
With so much good food in Tampines, we can understand why the area is perpetually crowded. Westies, now might be the time to pay a visit to the East for these Tampines hawker food gems before the rest of Singapore finds out!
For more food guides in the East, check out our Changi Village food guide, for white beehoon and ipoh hor fun. There’s also our guide for cafes in Katong, including foie gras pasta and pancake stacks.
This post was originally published on 14 October 2016.