Teochew porridge, also known in colloquial dialect as ‘Teochew Mui’ 糜 to foreigners is a really strange and peculiar dish to say the least as it is nothing like the mushy rice porridge or al dente risotto in any shape or form. Neither is it gooey like the typical Asian congee. So what exactly is it?
Teochew porridge is quite simply cooked rice grains swimming in a soupy broth (might be flavoured or plain) and consumed with a selection of Chinese side dishes like nasi padang. It refers more to a style of serving rather than a particular dish. Typical items a Teochew porridge stall will have include fried or steamed fish, minced pork meat, braised duck, pork intestines, eggs, boiled vegetables, fish cake, squid, tofu or tau pok and many more. A popular breakfast as well as supper option amongst Singaporeans, Teochew porridge is comforting and delicious.
Here’s my list of the 10 places you should go for the best Teochew porridge around the island.
1. Joo Seng Teochew Porridge & Rice
This is my go-to place for Teochew porridge — just a five-minute drive away from Bukit Timah. The braised duck meat and boiled squid are particularly good and very consistent in quality. A huge variety of dishes including a few non-Teochew delights greet visitors — indeed it is somewhat akin to an “economical rice” stall.
Joo Seng Teochew Porridge & Rice: 14 Cheong Chin Nam Road, Singapore 599738 | Tel: +65 6463 0768 | Opening Hours: (Daily) 10am – 4am
2. Joo Chiat Teochew Porridge (formerly Teck Teochew Porridge)
For fans of Teck Teochew Porridge, please note that the stall has once again shifted to Bukit Batok Crescent and is now operating as Joo Chiat Teochew Porridge.
This stall is a mix of Teochew porridge and zi char, with fishes displayed out front. Menu items are quite limited with only the braised stuff being standard, and you will need to ask the uncle what they have, since it’s like a zi char but with no menu.
The advantage is that many of items will be made fresh behind the kitchen like the stir-fried cabbage. Remember to order the signature braised pork trotters as well.
Joo Chiat Teochew Porridge: 31 Bukit Batok Crescent, #01-01, Singapore 658070 | Tel: +65 6909 5209 | Opening Hours: 10am – 10pm (Thu to Tue), Closed on Wed | Facebook
3. Choon Seng Teochew Porridge
This must be one of the most closely-guarded secrets of Teochew porridge fanatics. Not many food bloggers seem to know of Choon Seng’s existence based on my research, although it’s been around for a really long time and is ostensibly very popular. Do try the pig’s head and the braised pork belly, and remember that coming early is a must as most of the sides are sold out before 2pm.
Choon Seng Teochew Porridge: Blk 43 Cambridge Road, #01-09, Singapore 210043 | Tel: +65 6293 0706 | Opening Hours: 11.30am – 3pm (Mon – Sat), Closed on Sun | Facebook
4. Curry Rice & Porridge (咖喱饭粥)
Walking along Macpherson Road, you will find a simple stall that says Curry Rice & Porridge (咖喱饭粥). This retro and nostalgic stall has a nondescript signboard that is so easily missed unless you looked for it. Awesome curry and homemade otah, both of which aren’t anywhere close to being Teochew, can be had here. Nonetheless, the Teochew-style steamed sea bass is great and can also be had with porridge, making it pretty much modus operandi of a Teochew mui stall.
Teochew Porridge (Macpherson): 554 Macpherson Road, Singapore 368230 | Opening Hours: 11am – 3.30pm, 5pm to 9pm (Mon – Sat), Closed on Sun
5. Soon Soon Teochew Porridge
Most Teochews will find the sides served here very close to the heart, almost like they came from Mum’s kitchen. Traditional is the keyword here so you will certainly not find the non-Teochew sides commonly found elsewhere.
Soon Soon Teochew Porridge: 13 Simon Road, Singapore 545897 | Opening Hours: 7am – 10pm (Wed – Mon), Closed on Tue | Facebook
6. Ah Seah Teochew Porridge
Ah Seah Teochew Porridge is very highly recommended by my Teochew friends but I have to admit that I wasn’t impressed as I found Heng Long and Soon Soon just up the road to be better. However, the prices here were quite some cheaper than the other stalls, so perhaps it’s the Singaporean notion that “cheap is good”. Parking in this area is always a pain though.
Ah Seah Teochew Porridge: 31 Teck Chye Terrace, Singapore 545731 | Tel: +65 6283 7409 | Opening Hours: 11am – 12midnight (Mon – Sun), Closed on alternate Mon
7. Ye Shang Hai Teochew Porridge
This seems to be a perennial favourite among taxi drivers, with most stopping by for meals or gatherings, as is evident from the carpark in front being filled with taxis (they have since shifted to Lengkok Bahru). Don’t be discouraged by the long queues during meal times as it clears really quickly. Portions are tapas-sized which allows you to sample a larger variety of sides.
Ye Shang Hai Teochew Porridge: Blk 55, Lengkok Bahru, #01-387, Singapore 151055 | Opening Hours: 10.30am – 5am (Wed – Mon), Closed on Tue
8. Soon Kee Teochew Porridge
Somehow the best meals are always in the ulu locations. Not your usual Teochew porridge crowd – you’ll see towkays with their shiny Rolex watches having breakfast, NS boys wolfing down their bowls of mui after days of questionable cookhouse grub, families and a mix of other groups. Soon Kee Teochew Porridge has by far the best braised pork as it simply melts in your mouth, and the spicy lala clams are never sandy.
Soon Kee Teochew Porridge: 33 Sembawang Road, #01-04/07, Singapore 779084 | Opening Hours: 8am – 2pm (Mon – Sat), Closed on Sun
9. Lim Joo Hin Eating House
This Teochew porridge is so popular, it has seen the likes of Hong Kong superstars Chow Yun Fatt and Andy Lau visit its humble premises. One of the better midnight Teochew muis around Singapore, the braised pork is pretty good while the overall standard of dishes is decent. Prices can be a bit expensive though, as they have increased prices due to their ‘celebrity’ status.
Lim Joo Hin Eating House: 715 Havelock Road, Singapore 169642 | Tel: +65 6272 9871 | Opening Hours: 11am – 5am (Daily)
10. Heng Long Teochew Porridge
Located along the popular midnight eateries of Upper Serangoon Road, the crowded Heng Long is a favourite. They have the usual myriad of Teochew sides but beyond that, they also have sweet and sour pork which goes really well with the porridge. If the queue is too long, there is another porridge stall right beside called Wan Xing which also serves a good Teochew porridge.
Heng Long Teochew Porridge: 1006 Upper Serangoon Road, Singapore 534744 | Opening Hours: 6pm – 4am (Daily) | 240 Tanjong Katong Road, Singapore 437028 | Opening Hours: 10.30am – 4.30am (Daily)
Editor’s end notes
Based on our previous food guides, I’m probably going to see a lot of new recommendations as well as disagreement on my choice of Teochew porridge list — I’m Peranakan Chinese so please cut me some slack. Nonetheless, do continue to share your thoughts and comments as well as more suggestions where else I can find good Teochew porridge — I would be most interested to read them.
Note that we originally wanted to feature Teck’s Teochew porridge, but they got bought over by someone else and we gave the wrong address (didn’t know they moved, signboard also remained the same). Teck has since moved to Joo Chiat which is the correct stall we want to feature. This article is not paid or sponsored, thus we do not owe any Teochew porridge stall owners an explanation why we did not include your stall in the post. We just feature what we think is good.