Hawker centres are part of the social fabric of Singapore. Here are some of the best examples around the island.
Officially called food centres, hawker centres were rapidly built from the 1970s onwards to re-home street food vendors, and many have flourished to become institutions. Today, it is where you can find prime examples of local dishes including chicken rice, bak chor mee, roti prata, nasi lemak, laksa, and much more. In the recent years, younger hawkers have also stepped in to offer more international flavours from ramen to pasta.
This guide is not exhaustive – we’ll be adding more as we cover them – but here’s a guide to some of the best hawker centres in Singapore.
(Main image credit: Choo Yut Shing / Flickr)
Diners flock to Bukit Timah for the carrot cake and satay bee hoon, as well as perennial favourites such as durian chendol, Hokkien mee, mutton soup and kway chap. Leave space for durian chendol and beancurd with taro balls.
(Image credit: @full.of.yum / Instagram)
From famous bak chor mee to a Michelin-recognised satay bee hoon, Bedok 85 is a culinary destination in the east. It’s also famous for Cantonese pork porridge, xiao long bao, Fuzhou oyster cake alive, peanut soup with rice balls.
(Image credit: @bedok85bcm / Instagram)
Small in stature but big on gourmands’ minds, this food centre boasts famous nasi lemak, prawn noodles, and mutton soup. Pork leg bee hoon is also a draw, as is the mee soto and ice kacang, laksa, and Indian rojak.
(Image credit: goofytwocooks / Instagram)
As one of the earliest hawker centres built in Singapore, Hong Lim is full of culinary gems including fish head bee hoon, curry chicken noodles, kway chap, and bak kut teh. Younger hawkers also offer international fare from Japanese-inspired lunch bowls to duck confit.
(Image credit: Heng Kee Curry Chicken Noodles/Facebook)
Tian Tian’s chicken rice dominates the headlines at Maxwell, but other stalls serving fish soup, chee cheong fun, xiao long bao, and Cantonese roast meats are just as worthy. Old school snacks come in the form of tapioca cake and ham chin peng, then finish off with local craft beer.
(Image credit: @RenMin.sg / Facebook)
Located in between Tiong Bahru and River Valley, Beo Crescent is popular for its lor mee, char kway teow, and claypot rice. The ban mian is also noteworthy, as well as Teochew braised duck, and fried rice from an ex-Din Tai Fung chef.
(Image credit: @sg.foodbuzz / Instagram)
Head to this food centre for Michelin-recommended braised duck and char kway teow. There are also dripping plates of Hokkien mee, crispy appam, and fluffy chwee kueh.
(Image credit: @thesillygirlsays / Instagram)