Today I’d like to introduce you to Drew, aka the Hungry Partier, who is travelling around the world in search of the tastiest food and the liveliest nightlife. He’s the author of the latest in Travel With Kat’s street food guides from around the world, next stop Singapore. Over to Drew….
Singapore is home to some of the most unique and incredible cuisine on the planet. I’ve travelled to over 45 Countries in the world, and I must admit that my stomach has never been more satisfied and impressed than it was when I was in Singapore. So just what makes it so amazing?
Singaporean food has been greatly influenced by its neighboring countries of Malaysia, China, Indonesia and India. This is largely due to the ethnic diversity of Singapore, which is about 75% Chinese, 13% Malay and 10% Indian with a small mix of other ethnicities.
Despite Singapore being one of the most expensive cities in the world to live in, the food is very affordable! Singapore’s hawker centres, which are giant outdoor food courts, with dozens and dozens of traditional food vendors are scattered throughout the city. Everything is very cheap and beyond tasty. It’s like heaven on earth.
The locals love eating so much that it is actually considered a national pastime and a unifying cultural thread in Singapore. Make sure that you get off that plane with an empty stomach, because you’ll be so full that you won’t be able to breathe on the way out. This guide about where to eat in Singapore is excellent but continue reading here if you’re after some street food…
Here are my favourite 5 street food dishes in Singapore.
1. Hainanese Chicken Rice
This is my personal favorite street food in Singapore and the countries national dish. Not only is it one of the all-time classics, but it is one of the cheapest dishes that you can find in the city. The origins of Chicken Rice trace back to its Chinese roots, specifically prepared in Hainanese style with a unique blend of chilli, ginger, garlic and lime. I highly advise you to put some of the spicy peppers and ginger inside the rice because it is a perfect complement to the robust flavor. You can purchase Chicken Rice in hawker centres, street vendors and even luxury hotels, in other words everywhere.
2. Char Kway Teow
Char Kway Teow is so good that I ate it every single day. It’s a national favorite among the locals and is seen on almost every street corner in Singapore. This dish is a flat rice noodle dish that is stir-fried over prawns, bean sprouts, bean sprouts, chives, sausage and eggs. The sauce on top is the kicker, which is a light and dark soy sauce along with mixed spices. Traditionally, this dish is stir-fried in pork fat, making it somewhat unhealthy, but you won’t be able to contain yourself when this dish is on the plate in front of you.
3. Carrot Cake
Carrot Cake in Singapore is not what you might imagine it to be. In fact it has nothing to do with carrots. It consists of cubes of steamed rice flour and white grated radish, fried together in an egg-like omelette, spring onions and green vegetables. Also known as Chai Tow Kway, it’s actually much more filling than you’d expect, so don’t make a rookie mistake by ordering too many. You can either buy it white (plain) or dark (seasoned with dark soy sauce). Walk into any hawker centre and you’ll have no problem finding it!
4. Wanton Mee
Wanton Mee originated as a Cantonese dish in Southern China, but has emerged as one of the most eaten dishes in Singapore. A typical wanton mee is a noodle dish that is served in a hot broth with vegetables and wonton dumplings. People eat it with some light sweet sauce, slices of pork char and leafy vegetables. You may choose to have it spicy, or not spicy, and it usually comes with soup on the side. It’s pretty damn tasty.
5. Mee Goreng
If you like spicy food, then you are in for a real treat with mee goreng! This classic dish is commonly found around Indonesia and Malaysia and some other SouthEast Asian countries. It is made up of yellow noodles that are fried in cooking oil and mixed together with a large variety of ingredients such as onions, garlic, spices, chili, cabbage, tomato, eggs, pickles and some form of meat. The most common meat is chicken, beef or prawns. It is sold by most street vendors, hawker centres and restaurants around Singapore. Your Singapore food tour isn’t complete until you’ve tried this delicious dish.
Is your mouth watering yet? Book a flight to Singapore so you can send your taste buds to heaven!
Drew is a recent college graduate who has visited over 45 countries, 43 since the beginning of 2012. His favorite things about traveling are eating local food, meeting awesome people and experiencing the nightlife scene. Drew is currently teaching English in South Korea and he blogs about food, culture and nightlife at the Hungry Partier. Follow Drew on Facebook and Twitter.
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I was in Singapore this year and I loved the food there. So affordable and yet extremely tasty!
If I have to choose I would definitely choose as my number one the foods in Singapore. It’s cheaper, it’s tasty, delicious and makes me eat and eat and eat. Hmmm…
Even after traveling all over Asia, I love the food in Singapore. It’s a perfect blend of Chinese, Malaysian, and just Southeast Asian food as a whole. Hainanese chicken rice and Char Kway Teow are probably my favorites too! I also love how all the shopping complexes seem to have a food court with a vast array of amazing food, better than anything I would find in the US.
I really do need to get myself over there!
I have never been a big fan of Asian food so whether I would be able to stomach any of these foods I am not sure but this really is a great review for anyone heading to Singapore. I also think that my personal preference is because I have had bad experiences with ‘Americanized Asian’ cuisine which I am convinced is nowhere near the same as the legitimate real-deal so to speak.
I am always open to trying new things so hopefully whenever we venture to Asia I will be able to sample some of these local delicacies.
OMG, I love Singapore and the street food, must try the different way of eating the carrot cake – yummy!
Paul- Yes, Carrot Cake was one of my favorites! I actually wouldn’t have known about it if my Singaporean friend didn’t buy it for me. I’m glad she did! You’re post on Balinese food is incredible, and I can’t wait to eat these next week in Bali!
Thanks Drew! It was some time ago, but revisiting it was a really enjoyable couple of hours! Glad it might be of some use to you! Enjoy Bali! I’m insanely jealous!
Go Drew!!! What an amazing amount of travelling, and food sampling you’ve done. I love this type of food, and remember eating a lot of Nasi Goreng when in Bali many years ago. I only passed through Singapore for a few hours, and it’s a pleasant surprise to know that this food is so amazing and not expensive, as the city was pretty expensive from my memory of it. Great article, thanks.
Wow! How amazing to see another take on carrot cake! Was not expecting that! Great article which will be very useful for when I get to Singapore. A good read!
I second the Balinese Nasi Goreng! In fact I’ve just written about Balinese food if you are interested? ! http://Olleydays.wordpress.com
Thanks for popping by Paul and I’m always interested in food!
*reads about Italian food.
I’m glad I found this place, looking forward to updates!
Cheers Paul! Thanks for the link and have a great time on your next trip.
Thanks for giving it a read! Did you get to Bali at all?
Drew certainly gets around and he’s got me longing to go to this part of the world even more now!
Kathryn, from what I have seen of your posts so far I think you would love Bali!!!
I’m quite sure I would love Singapore and Bali, possibly even more!
Thanks Jackie! I am actually going to Bali next week, and I CAN’T WAIT to eat some Nasi Goreng! Cheers and happy travels 🙂
Ah Drew!!! Dribbling a little as I write this 🙂 and also a bit jealous!! I have amazing memories of Bali – apart from the Nasi Goreng …we also went to a Full Moon Ceremony, which was out of this world. Have a fantastic time Drew!!
Drew! You have to check out some of the eateries on my guest blog post below! If you want any suggestions on places to go I could suggest a couple! Hit me up if you fancy!
Just checked some out and they are fantastic! I won’t hesitate to contact you if I need any other suggestions in Bali!
Thanks a lot! Happy travels
Yes I am SO excited for everything! If you like my Facebook page, you can follow my adventures 🙂