These Woodlands food joints get our two thumbs up!
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 10 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 ($28++), 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.
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 Kkochi ($1.60) and Garlic Chicken with Pepper ($1.70). Grilled over charcoal and subsequently flame-torched, these skewers effuse a smoky aroma that pair nicely with their natural savouriness.
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.
5. Ivan’s Carbina
Instead of heading to town for Marche Movenpick’s rosti, try out the Roesti + Chicken Cutlet ($7.80) 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 9pm
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 (from $1.30 to $1.50) 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.
Besides the famous wings, check out their other mains, including Honey Mustard Chicken ($3.80) and Chicken Chop Pasta ($3.80) that are all affordably priced below $4!
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 29 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 Garden, if Woodlands is too far for you.
Address: 21 Woodlands Close, Level 1, Singapore 737854
Opening hours: Daily 24 hours
8. Malu Malu Seafood
Image credit: @xywexploresg
Hidden among rows of industrial estates, Malu Malu Seafood is one of Woodlands’ best-kept secrets. Despite its ulu location, this no-frills zi char has amassed an impressive fanbase over the years.
Part of their growing popularity lies in the Signature Fried Vermicelli ($5/$10/$15), which features fried bee hoon and assorted seafood, all held together by a pillowy omelette. An accompanying lime balances everything out, as it cuts across the hearty bee hoon with its refreshing zest.
Address: 200 Woodlands Industrial Park E7, #01-04, Singapore 751
Opening hours: Daily 11am to 10:30pm
Tel: 9355 7783
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 7am to 7pm
10. Master Wang
No Woodlands food listicle will be complete without Master Wang’s value-for-money Xiao Long Bao Buffet Dinner ($18.80++). Besides free-flow portions of the Original Steamed Dumpling (xiao long bao), this value-for-money buffet also offers unlimited servings of their 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 5pm to 8:30pm
Tel: 8733 3171
Travel down to these Woodlands food places
Besides the rows of restaurant outlets at Causeway Point, a plethora of delicious stalls lies within Woodlands. The next time you’re in the area, 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 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.