Thanks for reaching out! I am so happy to know that you are interested in nasi lemak. I never really received a message specificially asking where to eat nasi lemak in Singapore. This is such an interesting question and I will do all my best to recommend the top 10 nasi lemak restaurants in Singapore.
Enjoy and let me know if I can help you with anything else!
Hi Trisha! I love your food stories! I recently stumbled upon your Singapore food articles and now that I am here, I want to know more! You said that nasi lemak is something not to miss when in Singapore, right? My question is where to eat nasi lemak in Singapore? Can I just get it anywhere or there are specific places you recommend? Thank you so much and more power to your blog!
What is Nasi Lemak?
Nasi Lemak is a Malay fragrant rice dish cooked in coconut milk and pandan leaf. In the Malay language, the word nasi means rice while lemak literally means grease or fat. It is famous (I mean really famous) in Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, and Brunei. I’ve visited these countries a lot and nasi lemak is everywhere. There are many variations but the traditional Malay dish has a variety of side dishes served on top of the nasi lemak.
Sambal, a chili sauce made with different kinds of chili peppers with shrimp paste, garlic, ginger, shallots, scallions, palm sugar, and lime juice. It is often on the side of all Malay dishes and is the region’s favorite. You can definitely top put it to any dish (like I do). Ikan bilis or fried anchovies is also part of the nasi lemak entourage to elevate the dish with its fishy and salty flavors. I’ve had nasi lemak in 4 different countries and ikan bilis is present in all these traditional and local versions. I can say it’s definitely an important component. Eggs and cucumbers are also served along with proteins (of the culture’s choice) that vary from fried chicken, fried fish, hotdogs – it can be anything really!
Nasi lemak in Singapore
The original nasi lemak is from Malaysia and is a typical Malaysian breakfast. Like many other Malay dishes, it spread through countries like Indonesia, Brunei, and Singapore. In today’s Singapore, nasi lemak is not only eaten for breakfast but any time of the day. It’s easy to make, has different types of sides and variations, it’s quick and is very suitable to the lifestyle of the working class who’s always on the go.
International Muslim Food Stall Nasi Lemak
The first stop on where to eat nasi lemak in Singapore: The International Muslim Food stall which is inarguably a hawker legend in the country. The main attraction here is pretty simple and straightforward. I find the smal nasi lemak menu a good thing. Whenever I come here, I don’t need to spend a long time thinking about what to order or end up getting the same. Nasi Lemak Chicken Wing Set, fish set, and, hotdog set fish fillet set. That’s it! All these below $5 SGD! You have to come early though as this food stall is the talk of the town. The lines are always long!
Selera Rasa Nasi Lemak at Adam Road Food Centre
Malik and Aminah, the mother and son tandem behind the famous Selera Rasa Nasi Lemak is probably the most famous in Singapore. Located at Adam Road Food Centre, this hawker stall is always flocked by many Singaporeans for breakfast, lunch, and dinner – more often than not, intentional. I came here because most of my Singaporean friends recommended it but the long line heightened my interest in this nasi lemak. I don’t know what happened but I ended up ordering 2 meals here and finished them both. The Royal Rumble is a favorite here because it’s really cheap ($5.90 SGD / $4 USD est) for the amount of food that will be served to you. Other nasi lemak variations include fish, chicken, and otak. I also like how creative the names of the set meals are! Flash meal and Royal Flush are two names that were pretty attractive but I didn’t get to try them. These meals are also served in any Crave restaurants countrywide (see below).
Crave Nasi Lemak
Crave is one of the most popular when it comes to Nasi Lemak delights. They have 4 choices of nasi lemak variations and I’ve tried them all! Chicken is the most popular and at Crave Nasi, you have an option for chicken wings ($5.90 SGD) or chicken cutlet ($6.50 SGD). I prefer the cutlet because I don’t like eating chicken bones. Tender parts work for me! Both these dishes come with an egg, ikan bilis (dried anchovies), and cucumbers. Top it with sambal chili for a spicy kick! For the pescetarians, Crave Nasi also has nasi lemak with selar fish.
Village Nasi Lemak Bar
When I first entered Village, I didn’t think it’s a place to eat nasi lemak in Singapore. The interior is very modern with colorful stools and artsy wallpapers. There’s even a bar lunch set up where your nasi lemak will be prepared in front of you! The 3 main chef recommendations at rendang beef, rendang mutton, and spicy sambal sotong set. All these lunch time specials cost $9.50 SGD ($6.89 USD).
Sedap Nasi Lemak
Sedap’s most attractive (and distinct) feature is the nasi lemak kerabu, blue pea rice that has a good reputation. It is fragrant and soft – rice that melts in your mouth. Sedap’s popular nasi lemak set meals include Set A – nasi lemak, sambal, fried egg, fried chicken wing, ikan bilis, and peanut. This set costs $5.20 SGD ($3.77 USD). My favorite is set C1 which I always order for delivery. It consists of nasi lemak, sambal, egg omelet, beef rendang, sayur lodeh, ikan bilis, and peanut. This costs $7.70 SGD ($5.58 USD).
Madas Nasi Lemak
A cheaper version but equally better. This is one of the best places where to eat Nasi Lemak in Singapore! This food stall is halal so for those who are practicing this diet, Madas is your place! I also noticed there are way more nasi lemak set meals in this stall and some are even less than $5 SGD ($3.62 USD). You can also get extras like begedil (deep-fried potato patty), chicken cutlet, chicken wing, fish burger fillet, chicken nugget, egg, hotdog, and kuning fish (yellow stripe scad), all below $2 SGD ($1.45 USD).
Lee Wee & Brothers
Three brothers set up a small stall in old airport road and their mother imparted their family’s best-kept recipes. Through time, they have improved these recipes without shying away from the Singaporean home-cooking taste. Otah is a grilled fish cake made of groundfish meat mixed with tapioca starch and spices. It is one of the best-sellers in this restaurant and this is their specialty. Lee Wee & Brothers serve their nasi lemak (and all their other dishes) in ‘lunchboxes’ – proof that food on the go can be as equally tasty as a home-cooked meal. Breaded fish, chicken cutlet, and honey glazed wing lunch boxes are some of the most popular. These are all below $5 SGD!
Where did you eat nasi lemak in Singapore?
Can you add more to the list above? What are the best nasi lemak restaurants in Singapore? Leave your suggestions in the comment box below to help other people find the best nasi lemak in Singapore!