10 Classic Southeast Asian Desserts You Need To Try When In Singapore


Cheng Sim •  Nov 24, 2016

Aside from soaking up the culture and art scene in Singapore, savouring their local desserts is one of the best ways to complete your food adventure here. Whether you play for team savoury or sweet, Singapore presents a variety of desserts that will surely please both palates.

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1. Putu Piring

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If you’re new to this tropical country, present yourself with the opportunity to try the popular putu piring. Prepared in a flat encasing that shapes like a plate (piring), these soft steamed cakes are made entirely from rice flour and served with a touch of gula Melaka and a generous amount of shredded coconuts.

Credit: haigroadputupiring on Facebook

Address: Traditional Haig Road Putu Piring, 970 Geylang (Onan Road) #01-12 OR Geylang Serai Market

Opening Hours:

Mon - Thu: 11:00am – 10:00pm

Fri – Sat: 11:00am – 11:00pm

Sun: 10:00am – 10:00pm

Price: SGD2 for five pieces

2. Ice Cream Sandwich

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Sauntering up and down Orchard Road on a sunny day calls for some dessert intervention, such as the classic ice cream sandwich. Sold in a variety of flavours such as the all-time favourite chocolate to the unconventional durian (a hit with the locals), it is a delicious dessert that features a block of your favourite ice cream sandwiched between two fluffy breads. You can also have them between crispy wafers or served in a cup.

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Address: Nearby Takashimaya and Paragon, Orchard Road, Ngee Ann City, Singapore

Price: SGD1 per piece

[Want to know how ice creams look like around the world? We have all the info here!]

3. Ice Kacang

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If you can’t beat the hot weather in Singapore, you might as well embrace them with the help of a local dessert named ice kacang. Available in most food centres, you’re very likely to spot many famished Singaporeans with this shaved ice dessert on their table. Brightly coloured with sweet syrups, chow down the hill of shaved ice before it unveils a secret serving of red beans, sweet corn, palm seed, and agar-agar underneath.

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Address: Food Republic, 435 Orchard Road, Wisma Atria, Level 4, Singapore 238877

Opening Hours:

Mon - Sun: 10:00am – 10:00pm

Price: SGD1.50 - SGD2

4. Rojak

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Once you have a taste of this unique fruit salad, you know you can’t find this local dessert anywhere else in the world. Finding them is easy and you can order a plate of rojak conveniently from any mamak shop or food centres. If you can’t tell the ingredients from the very sinister yet delicious sauce, rojak is a tossed-up of cucumber, pineapple, turnip and bean sprouts, which is often smothered with shrimp paste and chopped peanuts.

Address: Benny Rojak Istimewa (inside New Hawa Restaurant), 288 Bedok Road, Singapore 469444

Contact: +65 9856 8622

Opening Hours:

Mon: 2:30pm – 9:30pm

Wed – Sun: 2:30pm – 9:30pm

Closed on Tue

Price: SGD3.50 - SGD6

5. Cheng Tng

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Need another option to cool down in Singapore? Head over to the nearby food centre for a refreshing serving of cheng tng (translation: clear soup). A popular Chinese dessert, there are many variations of cheng tng and the standard bowl will consists of white fungus, longan, sago, barley, and dried dates swimming in a rock sugar-sweetened soup. You can enjoy it warm or cold.

Address: Tang Tea House Hong Kong Cafe, Shop Houses No. 357/359 Bedok Road, Singapore 469545

Contact: +65 6445 9100

Opening Hours:

Sun - Thu: 11:00am – 2:00am

Fri – Sat: 11:00am – 3:00am

Price: SGD3.80

6. Pisang Goreng Cheese

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You may have stumbled upon the famous pisang goreng in various cities in Southeast Asia, but you can always trust Singaporeans to up their game. While the everyday pisang goreng is a dish of deep-fried banana or plantain, Singapore has elevated this classic dessert by adding a coat of cheese and chocolate drizzle for the perfect balance of sweet and savoury.

Address: Burock, Block 101 Yishun Avenue 5 #01-03, Singapore 760104

Contact: +65 8238 3344

Opening Hours:

Tue - Sun: 12:00pm – 10:00pm

Closed on Mon

Price: SGD4 per serving

7. Epok-Epok

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If you find yourself at a traditional Malay stall for lunch, look out for this adorable snack called epok-epok. Deep-fried to golden perfection and folded along the edges, each savoury parcel is stuffed with potatoes, chicken curry, or sardines. If you spot unconventional flavours like tuna and black pepper chicken, pack a few for your trip back to the hotel.

Address: Warung Bismillah, Zion Riverside Hawker Centre, 70 Zion Road, Singapore 247792

Opening Hours:

Mon - Sun: 11:00am - 5:00pm

Price: SGD1

8. Bubur Pulut Hitam

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Just the thought of bubur pulut hitam is enough to conjure warmth and comfort that reminds us of home. They may look intimidating but this local dessert is perfect to satisfy any appetite. A lot of time and effort go into preparing a huge pot of bubur pulut hitam, so thank auntie or uncle when they serve you this bowl of black glutinous rice that is simmered with palm sugar and topped with a hypnotising swirl of coconut milk.

Address: Ren Ren Chicken Rice, Block 261, Yishun Street 22, #01-137, Yishun, Singapore.

Opening Hours:

Mon - Sun: 11:00am – 9:00pm

Price: SGD1.50 per bowl

9. Soya Beancurd

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Never allow the simplicity of a soya beancurd fool you. Available in most Chinese restaurants and local food centres, this soya beancurd is spiked with your choice of flavours ranging from strawberry, mango, durian, almond, and more. Pick up a spoon and let this silky homemade dessert melt your worries away.

Address: Tang Tea House Hong Kong Cafe, Shop Houses No. 357/359 Bedok Road, Singapore 469545

Contact: +65 6445 9100

Opening Hours:

Sun - Thu: 11:00am – 2:00am

Fri – Sat: 11:00am – 3:00am

Price: SGD1.70 - SGD2.80

10. Cendol

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Lastly, one of the quintessential desserts to try in Singapore is the glorious cendol. Your sunny holiday will be incomplete without this sweet local dessert. With shaved ice and coconut milk as its base, this tiny bowl is packed with pandan-flavoured jelly noodles, palm sugar, and mung beans, which is then drizzled with gula melaka syrup. Spot them right away at your nearby food centres and hawker stalls.

Address: Makan Melaka, Changi Village Hawker Centre, 2 Changi Village Road, Singapore 500002

Opening Hours:

Mon - Sun: 8:30am - 10:30pm

Price: SGD1.50

Rounding up your trip to Singapore on a sweet note is easy because you can rely on their variety of local desserts to try. Whether you have a sunny weather to embrace, or a strong craving for a mood lifter, join the locals for a bowl of cheng tng, take a bite off a piece of savoury epok-epok, or slurp down some almond-flavoured soya beancurd to cheer you up.