Most of us think of the East or West as foodie hotspots, and the North rarely gets due credit. Mention Marsiling or Admiralty in a conversation and your friends will usually think of quiet HDB estates, rather than sleek cafes and restaurants. Yet, a kaleidoscope of delicious food is often concealed within these monochrome buildings. Take Woodlands for example; a forest of industrial estates and high-rise flats, this expansive district surprises with its sheer variety of tasty food. Here are 13 Woodlands food joints to check out!
1. Rasa Istimewa Restaurant
Image credit: Rasa Istimewa Waterfront Restaurant’s Facebook page
Not many restaurants in Singapore boast a relaxing sea view like Rasa Istimewa Waterfront Restaurant, so drop by here with your loved ones for a chill dinner. Resting along the coast of Woodlands Waterfront Park, this homely spot churns up both halal zi char favourites and barbecued seafood.
Fans of the latter must try their signature BBQ Seafood Combo ($30++), which features a trio of sambal-coated stingray, cuttlefish, and clams. The piquant sambal melds everything together, elevating the well-cooked seafood with its umami-laden zing.
You can also order takeaway or delivery from the Rasa Istimewa website!
2. Yes! Nasi Kukus
Coconut rice and fried chicken form a sinfully addictive pairing, so it’s no surprise that locals throng to Yes! Nasi Kukus for their Nasi Dagang With Fried Chicken ($5.50). Steamed in coconut milk, their lemak-rich nasi dagang marries beautifully with the earthy curry to create a moreish and delectable plate.
While this simple duo proves to be a flavour-packed combination, it’s their drool-worthy fried chicken that provides the knockout punch. Bolstered by a potent rub of turmeric, the thicc and succulent meat excites with it luscious and buttery notes.
Address: 573 Woodlands Drive 16, #01-01, Singapore 730573
Opening hours: Daily 10am to 9pm
Tel: 9101 5711
3. 9PM Kkochi
Image credit: @juancheatday
Kkochi (꼬치) translates to ‘skewers’ in Korean and that’s exactly what 9PM Kkochi specialises in. Think of a Tori-Q-like kiosk, with a couple of deft hands churning out multiple marinated Korean skewers.
Make room for favourites such as their Pork Zig Zag ($1.60) and Beef Zig Zag ($1.80). Grilled over charcoal and subsequently flame-torched, these skewers effuse a smoky aroma that pair nicely with their natural savouriness.
They are also offering takeaway and delivery with discounts when you order off the 9PM Kkochi website.
Address: 1 Woodlands Square, #B1-K11, Causeway Point, Singapore 738099
Opening hours: Daily 11am to 9:30pm
Tel: 6219 5884
4. Tenderbest Makcik Tuckshop
One of Singapore’s most popular fried chicken chain, Tenderfresh continues to set the bar high with its latest concept—Tenderbest Makcik Tuckshop. Reminiscent of the school canteens from before, this industrial cafe ought to relax anyone with their minimalist decor and jazzy ambience.
Complete a relaxing afternoon here with their fried chicken dishes, including the funky Fried Chicken Caramel ($5.90). Golden-brown wafers of fried chicken skin are stashed in a dollop of creamy vanilla ice-cream, supplying a much-needed textural contrast with their delicious crunch.
You can order their dishes via GrabFood, with islandwide delivery available too!
Address: 39 Woodlands Close, #01-68, MEGA@Woodlands, Singapore 737854
Opening hours: Sun-Thurs 11am to 10:30pm, Fri-Sat 11am to 11:30pm
Tel: 8738 6494
5. Ivan’s Carbina
Instead of heading to town for Marche Movenpick’s rosti, try out the Chicken Cutlet Roesti ($8.80) from Ivan’s Carbina instead! Featuring a substantial patty of grated potato pancake and an equally large slab of fried chicken, this hearty set certainly stretches your dollar. Special mention goes to the crispy cutlet, which impresses with its ASMR-worthy crackle and full-bodied kick.
Address: 354A Woodlands Avenue 5, #01-01, Lucky Star Coffeeshop, Singapore 730354
Opening hours: Tue-Sun 11am to 9:30pm
Tel: 9048 0333
6. Coal 3606
Agree to disagree, but school canteens churn up some of Singapore’s best meals. Take for example Coal 3606, which offers a bite of the famous chicken wings (six pieces for $9) from CHIJ St. Nicholas Girl’s School. Adorned with a crackling crust and glistening with chicken juices, these juicy treats tick all the boxes of a textbook-perfect fried chicken.
Address: Woodlands Avenue 9, Block W4/W6 Level 3, Republic Polytechnic, Singapore 738984
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 9:30am to 4:30pm
Tel: 9858 9792
7. Kuai San Dian Xin
Kuai San Dian Xian proves that you can enjoy a filling yum cha without breaking the bank, as their dim sum are all priced at just $1.30. Jio a friend and pamper yourselves with their house-made dishes, including the signature char siew pau. A trove of fatty pork belly hides within these pillowy buns, waiting to excite the palate with their rich, sweet, and aptly savoury flavours. They also have outlets in Ang Mo Kio and Chinese Gardens, if Woodlands is too far for you.
Address: 21 Woodlands Close, Level 1, Singapore 737854
Opening hours: Daily 24 hours
8. Wei Ji Braised Duck Rice
Run by a young hawker intent on keeping up a family legacy is Wei Ji Braised Duck, situated in Woodlands Industrial Park. The stall specialises in braised duck and pork, served alongside bowlfuls of piping hot kway chap, noodles, or yam rice. Portions here start from $3, and you can add on toppings like tau kwa, egg, fish cake, and more, from $0.50. They also sell duck offal such as gizzard and liver, from $0.50 a portion, if you feel like zhnging-up your duck rice!
Read more about our story of Wei Ji Braised Duck.
Address: 280 Woodlands Industrial Park, E5 Singapore Harvest, Singapore 757322
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 8am to 3pm
9. Shi Mei Roasted
Image credit: @fabianpoon
Not all roast meats are equal. At Shi Mei Roasted, the mouth-watering Char Siew Rice ($4) reigns supreme. Adorned with a generous layer of fat, the juicy and tender slabs of barbecued pork brim with meaty richness. A caramelised glaze rounds off this luxurious protein, giving a combination of both savoury and sweet undertones.
Address: 211 Marsiling Crescent, Lucky Star Eating House, Singapore 730211
Opening hours: Daily 8am to 3pm
10. Master Wang
No Woodlands food listicle will be complete without Master Wang’s value-for-money Original Steamed Dumpling ($3.20). The stall also offers Lala Steamed Dumpling and Fragrant Pan Fried Dumpling (potstickers)!
We also recommend saving extra tummy space for their Scallop Steamed Dumpling. Laced with umami-rich dried scallops, these XLB offer a harmonious medley of luscious and meaty notes.
Address: 27 Woodlands Link, Chang Cheng HQ, Singapore 738732
Buffet hours: Mon-Sat 10am to 9pm
Tel: 8733 3171
11. Teochew Meat Puff
Image credit: @mr.buibui
Teochew Meat Puff is the OG vendor of this old-school pasar malam snack. They sell a variety of these deep-fried puffs, all a spin on traditional Teochew oyster cakes. They have six flavours on their menu: Oyster ($3.50), Prawn ($3.50), Octopus ($3.50), Crab ($3.50), Scallop ($4) or Vegetable ($2). The queues were snaking long when they first opened, so be prepared to stand in line still when you go there.
Address: 71 Woodlands Industrial Park E9, Singapore 757048
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 11am to 8pm, Sun 11am to 7pm
Tel: 9879 9874
12. Warung Hajjah Anis
Image credit: Warung Hajjah Anis
Warung Hajjah Anis is a top late-night Woodlands food option, as this nasi padang stall is open 24 hours from Tuesday to Saturday. They have a variety of ingredients to choose from and prices are affordable as well. Their Nasi Goreng Sambal (from $5) offerings are also another hot favourite with fans. If you’re not big on rice, they have mee goreng, kway teow goreng, mee soto, and more, priced from $4.
Address: 883 Woodlands Street 82, #01-20, Singapore 730883
Opening hours: Sun 12pm to 2am, Mon 6:30pm to 10:30pm, Tue-Sat 24 hours
Tel: 9019 9952
13. Black & White Rojak
Image credit: Singapore Atrium Sale
A hidden gem for rojak in Woodlands is Black & White Rojak. Choose from two types of rojak here: Black ($3), or White ($3), all served with a medley of fried dough fritters, crunchy fruit, and vegetables. For those who don’t know, black rojak has a sauce made of shrimp paste, while white rojak is topped with a sweet-and-sour plum sauce.
Address: Blk 515A Woodlands Drive 14, Singapore 731515
Opening hours: NA
Travel down to these Woodlands food places
Besides the rows of restaurant outlets at Causeway Point, a plethora of deliciousness lies within these Woodlands food options. The next time you’re wondering what to eat in Woodlands, take a short walk around this exciting neighbourhood and check out these lesser-known stalls instead.
If you’re combing the ulu North for more hidden food gems, check out these 10 Yew Tee food places as well. Whether it’s celebrity-endorsed chicken rice or Western fusion creations, these exciting eateries prove that Yew Tee is not just the random neighbourhood near Choa Chu Kang.
This article was originally written on 16 August 2019.