Last Updated: January 3, 2018
You know that one friend everyone has who seems to live so far away that when they ask to share a taxi home, everyone just laughs? That’s me. Living in the depths of Changi is both a blessing and a curse, but being five minutes away from some of the best local food in Singapore definitely leans towards the former.
It’s going to get tricky navigating through the jungles (since that’s what everyone thinks Changi is), so it’s probably a good thing that I’ve put together this beacon of hope. If you’re planning a pilgrimage to this hidden food paradise, here is your ultimate Changi food guide:
I obviously have to start off at the famous Changi Village Hawker Centre. Many NSFs have indulged in the wonders (and cheapness) of this conglomerate of stalls, and for good reason.
Whether it’s for Nasi Lemak or Hor Fun, the light at the end of the tunnel is always worth the journey.
Anyone who knows me, knows that I can’t turn down a plate of good ayam penyet ($4) (smashed fried chicken). Sari Bistari’s sambal is ON POINT and the chicken is crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside. Get there early because once they sell out, the shop closes for the day.
I stumbled upon this relatively unknown Indonesian Ayam Bakar (roasted chicken) stall the other day and I’m here to let the whole world in on this gem. $4 will get you a massive plate of TWO pieces of roasted chicken served in your choice of sauce: ayam bakar diving, masak merah, sambal pecel, sambal rendang or sambal lado (pictured).
Try this before everybody else decides to too!
The moment I mention Changi Village, someone usually follows up with the mention of nasi lemak. The hawker centre is probably most famous for housing two stalls known for selling this local delight, one of which is International Nasi Lemak.
They’ve had the longest queues for years, and recently people have wondered about a drop in standard. I think they still do a decent plate of nasi lemak (approx $3.50) though, and their sambal is still my favourite.
The other main contender is Mizzy Corner Nasi Lemak and the snaking queues are a clear testament to their popularity. You can choose from different sets and add on various items accordingly to customise your plate of nasi lemak (approx $3.50). I prefer the crispiness of the chicken here, but International’s sambal still has my heart.
Get a group of friends together and order from both stalls to decide on your favourite!
Weng Kee Ipoh Hor Fun’s Chicken Cutlet Hor Fun ($3.50) is a must-have for Changi Village regulars. The unconventional addition of chicken cutlet is fried to perfection and when doused in that gravy… mmmm.
You won’t be disappointed with this one.
It would be a sin not to include Amigo in this list. Another strong contender in the hor fun scene, a bowl of their Chicken Chop Hor Fun ($3.50) resonates in the hearts of many.
This is comfort food in the heart of Changi, and I know a few people who may have moved away, but keep coming back just for this.
This may not look like the most appetising of dishes, but Ho Guan’s satay bee hoon hits the spot on a lazy Saturday. The couple running the stall have been at Changi Village for almost 40 years and I’ve only just gotten around to trying a plate of the seafood satay bee hoon ($3.50).
It’s not the best satay bee hoon in Singapore, but the pretty amazing peanut sauce does the job.
When I need my BBQ chicken wing fix (and this happens more often than not), it’s nice to know that Changi Village does a decent batch. The wings ($1.20 each) are not too oily and the flavour definitely triples when dipped in the accompanying chilli sauce.
Once again, not the best I’ve had in Singapore, but still pretty darn good.
In a land of (kinda) unhealthy hawker food, a light bowl of sliced fish soup ($4) is a very much needed balance sometimes. The fish slices are really fresh and the broth will keep you coming back for more.
Ask for extra veggies so you can justify dessert after.
Speaking of dessert, you can’t leave Changi Village without a bag of goreng pisang (fried banana fritters). Try some from the popular Million Stars Goreng Pisang ($4 for five pieces), where the batter packs a crunch and the bananas are sweet and moist on the inside.
A proper hawker meal should always include a plate of carrot cake and Changi Village does a decent dark version (approx $2.50). I love that there is always an abundance of egg, but the standard has admittedly been dropping over the years.
Still, it’s worth a try if you’re in the area!
If you’re looking for a friendly hangout and a promising selection of beers, you have to visit Charlie’s Corner. They’re also known for their reasonably priced western fare so the next time you’re round, order the Famous Fish and Chips ($12.90) or the Pork Chop ($12.90).
Changi Village Hawker Centre: 2 Changi Village Rd, Singapore 500002
Changi Village Hawker Centre may be where all the action is at, but the surrounding eateries are well worth a visit too.
You know what’s good about living in Changi? You don’t have to go to Melaka to look for good cendol. I’m a recent cendol convert and can vouch for this small bowl of awesome right next to Changi Village Hawker Centre. Plus at only $1.50 a bowl, I don’t know what would ever stop you…
Cendol Melaka: #01-2046, Blk 1 Changi Village Road, Singapore 500001
It seems to have become an unspoken thing in my family to hold birthday dinners at 89.7 Supper Club. I know right. But seriously, I’m beginning to see the light. You get so much bang for your buck!
The “restaurant” serves a variety of halal local and international cuisine, in a very relaxed setting and at extremely reasonable prices. There really probably is something for everybody here, so you know no one’s going to be complaining.
89.7 Supper Club:#01-2035, Blk 5 Changi Village Road, Singapore 500005)
Bambooze Bistro is another local Changi area haunt with its own steady stream of regulars. Friendly staff will make you feel like you’ve been coming there for years and conversation is never short amongst the chatty patrons.
Knock back a pint or two while watching footy with your mates here!
Bambooze Bistro: Blk 5 Changi Village Road, Singapore 500005
If good North Indian cuisine is what you’re after, bring the family to Saanjha Chulah. I’m not too crazy about the ambience but the recipes are authentic and homey. Order the Gobi Manchurian and Dal Makhni!
Saanjha Chulah: #01-2078, Blk 5 Changi Village Road, Singapore 500005 | Tel: +65 65421074
Jacob’s Cafe always has rave reviews and the local and western fare is a hit with customers. I’ve heard great things about the German Pork Knuckles ($43.90, subject to availability) and some have even claimed that they’re the best in Singapore.
Jacob’s Cafe: #01-2049, Blk 5 Changi Village Road, Singapore 500005 | Tel: +65 6542 7500
Pranakorn Thai Food isn’t the oldest kid on the block but it’s been making waves in the area for serving pretty authentic Thai food. The flavours here differ slightly from your usual Thai joints in Singapore and is probably more comparable to the real deal in Thailand.
Definitely worth a try!
Pranakorn Thai Food: #01-2086, Blk 4 Changi Village Road, Singapore 500004 | Tel: +65 6543 0883
It’s so nice knowing that we’ve got our own little microbrewery right here in Changi. Little Island Brewing Company offers a great ambience to have a few pints of house crafted brews with really good food to boot.
You can’t leave Changi without a visit here, so no excuses people.
Little Island Brewing Company:#01-01/02, Blk 6 Changi Village Rd, Singapore 509907 | Tel: +65 6543 9100 | Website
You may already be familiar with the Tang Tea House at Simpang Bedok but a new outlet has recently taken over the spot formerly home to the popular Ubin First Stop Restaurant in Changi. The halal eatery features a quaint kampung-like setting with cute murals and continues to serve up your favourites.
Tang Tea House: 57 Lorong Bekukong, Singapore 499173
If you’re willing to shell out for a more expensive lunch or dinner, head to Village Hotel Changi for probably the best Japanese food in the area. The price is justified by the fresh ingredients, impeccable service and relaxed dining atmosphere.
Ask the chef for his famous maki or go for one of the sets on the menu.
Choubei Japanese Restaurant: #01-03, Village Hotel Changi, 1 Netheravon Rd, Singapore 508502 | Tel: +65 6542 6881
Changi really is quite self-sufficient as a corner of Singapore — it even has a decent hotel buffet. I’ve visited Saltwater Cafe at Village Hotel Changi quite a few times with the fam, and the food and service have been consistent.
Local and international cuisine is featured and they do quite alright by hotel buffet standards.
Saltwater Cafe: Level 1, Village Hotel Changi, 1 Netheravon Rd, Singapore 508502 | Tel: +65 6379 7018
If I really had to choose where to eat in Village Hotel Changi though, I’d head to La Cantina in Venezia without hesitation. Firstly, the view is stunning so try to get a table outside.
I love Italian food so I know a good pasta when I see one — order the Linguine Al Granchio (Crabmeat Linguine) ($26.90) and I promise you, it’ll be one of the best you ever have in Singapore.
La Cantina in Venezia: #08/09-02, Village Hotel Changi, 1 Netheravon Rd, Singapore 508502 | Tel: +65 6546 9190
Besides the draw of amazing eateries, Changi Village seems to have gotten quite the cafe culture going in recent years. Here are a few that you can check out when you’re in the area.
A quaint and cosy setting beckons at Bunny and Pony with the usual cafe suspects on offer. Choose from a range of coffees and cakes or indulge in some ice cream and waffles. I’d say the appeal would be from the interesting flavours that they offer like Pina Colada, Dark Sesame and Earl Grey and Fig.
Bunny and Pony: #01-2000, Blk 1 Changi Village Road, Singapore 500001 | Tel: +65 9747 7778
It wasn’t that long ago that these 3D latte art creations by Chock Full of Beans were making their rounds on Instagram and I can totally see why. Cuteness overload! Customers happily partake in the 20-minute waiting time just to be surprised by a Hello Kitty or Totoro version.
The hype is clearly still present so get there early on a Sunday if you want a table.
Chock Full of Beans: #01-2090, Blk 4 Changi Village Road , Singapore 500004 | Tel: +65 6214 8839
Another cafe offering ice cream and waffles is A Spoonful of Sugar. They’ve got two waffle options: Thick and Fluffy or Thin and Crispy. I’d obviously opt for the former with a sizeable scoop of ice cream. This is definitely the place to stop at first before your trip to Pulau Ubin.
A Spoonful of Sugar: #01-2072, Blk 4 Changi Village Rd, Singapore 500004 | Tel: +65 6542 4244
This halal cafe is well-known in the rainbow cake world for their version of the dessert. I’d recommend ordering a slice of that and one of their gourmet teas to go along. For some reason, it always feels hotter in Changi, so a stop at this air-conditioned cosy space is always a good idea.
The Finest Tea Shop:#01-2060, Blk 4 Changi Village Road , Singapore 500004
I guess when you think Changi, you either imagine Changi Airport or Changi Village. There’s so much more friends! Venture around a little bit and you’ll be rewarded with some unique dining experiences.
More restaurant/bar than cafe, The Bark Cafe features fusion cuisine in an outdoor setting, right next to the Changi Chapel & Museum. Learn a bit more about Singapore’s history before spending the afternoon chilling at the cafe with a few drinks and a game of pool.
The Bark Cafe: 1000 Upper Changi Rd N, Singapore 507707 | Tel: +65 6545 4118
Get ready for a proper Italian dining experience in Changi, where the owners are friendly and the atmosphere is unbeatable. The space itself is wonderfully eclectic and you’ll soon forget that you’re in Singapore.
Go crazy and let the chefs decide what you should have for dinner or order from a menu filled with Southern Italian classics.
Porta Porta: 971 Upper Changi Rd N, Singapore 507668 | Tel: +65 6545 3108
The Ponggol Choon Seng Seafood Restaurant may be known for chilli crab, ngoh hiang, and their special Ponggol Mee Goreng but I love Crispy Duck and they do a decent version. The reviews are a hit or a miss so pay a visit to decide for yourself!
Ponggol Choon Seng Seafood Restaurant: 23A Turnhouse Rd, Singapore 507760 | Tel: +65 6546 5251 | Website
Someone definitely put in time and effort to restore the beautiful Meyer House which now boasts an inviting setting to while away your weekend. It overlooks Changi Beach and serves as an amazing venue for events, but drop by as well to try the local and western food on the menu.
Meyer House: 2 Netheravon Rd, Singapore 508503 | Tel: +65 6546 0800 | Website
Many started exploring Changi a lot more after The Coastal Settlement opened and everyone was looking for that bit of nostalgia. Ambience is probably the main thing this place has going for it though, since I find the food good but slightly overpriced.
Still, it’s very much worth a visit and the parking is free!
The Coastal Settlement: 200 Netheravon Rd, Singapore 508529 | Tel: +65 6475 0200 | Website
The Coastal Settlement’s sister restaurant sits barely 100m away, in a beautifully restored bungalow. Jubilee Coffee House and Bar offers the same blast from the past vibes with a similar menu. I’d swing by for the ambience and to try some of their snacks.
Jubilee Coffee House and Bar: 580 Netheravon Road Singapore 508516 | Tel: +65 6543 0060 | Website
If you’re after a simple romantic or relaxing dining experience, you’ll love Bistro @ Changi. The restaurant overlooks quiet Changi Beach with an alfresco dining area and serves up decent grub. I’d come mainly for the view though and perhaps the Potent Molten ($6.90), a sticky chocolate dessert to remember.
Bistro @ Changi: 260 Nicoll Drive, Singapore 498991 | Tel: +65 6546 5229 | Website
Changi may seem like Malaysia to anyone not living in the vicinity but I seriously think it’s an underrated part of Singapore. Grab a few of your best buds and make a Saturday or Sunday visit to this hood and please don’t just come for the famous nasi lemak (or Pokemon Go).
This Changi food guide is by no means comprehensive enough just yet, so let me know in the comments if I’ve missed out on a gem or two.