Last Updated: May 9, 2021
Referred to as ‘District 23’ by property agents as well as those familiar with this area/region in Singapore, the housing estates in Choa Chu Kang, Bukit Panjang, and Bukit Batok are very known for their lush greenery as well as for being the quieter, out-of-town housing districts.
Many who reside in this region may only know of this place as their bedroom—a place where they return home to sleep after a long day of work. However, it is without a doubt that there are good food places that exist in this district even residents might not know about.
With help from Singapore Westies who have struggled to find the best eats, here are 20 foodie places around Choa Chu Kang, Bukit Panjang, and Bukit Batok.
Touted by many foodies as the best ‘Chicken Rice in the West’ of Singapore, Ah Boy Chicken Rice truly lives up to its name. For just S$4, you can enjoy their signature Chicken Rice, an excellent combination of tender chicken meat with gelatinous skin crowning the top of a fragrant chicken stock-infused dome of rice. The Chicken Rice here is said to be so good that even Chef Eric Teo himself has raved about this place!
Our only gripe is that the chilli sauce is a bit on the watery side. Otherwise, this is definitely a plate that we think is worth the trip to Choa Chu Kang for.
678A Choa Chu Kang Crescent, Singapore 681678
+65 9186 5226
Fri to Wed: 9.30am – 8.30pm
Closed on Thu
Nine Spices pride itself in its nasi rempah—a Malay ‘spiced rice’ that is a unique marriage of biryani and nasi lemak.
Cooked in a pressure cooker, the basmati grains of the Nasi Rempah (S$3.90) are well-seasoned with nine spices which include star anise and cinnamon, giving it a fragrant and flowery taste. The well-fluffed rice comes perfectly portioned with a crispy chicken drumstick, two cherry tomatoes, achar and a hard-boiled egg, a great combination of proteins and carbohydrates on the plate.
At its price point, the rice-to-chicken ratio is just right providing for the perfect quick lunch or dinner bite for one person.
Serving up bowls of fishball noodles and laksa, Pandan Gardens Fishball Noodles at Keat Hong Community Centre is the brand’s first 24-hour flagship restaurant since they started operations more than 30 years ago.
Priced at S$3.60, the eatery’s signature Fishball Minced Meat Noodles is a substantial bowl containing all the essentials of classic fishball noodles. Alongside the chewy noodles which are soaked in spice and flavour are springy, decently-sized fishball and meatballs which are firm to bite.
Here, every bowl of noodles comes with a serving of soup made fresh daily with a combination of fish stock and fresh pork. Immaculate and flavoursome, this is exactly the kind of soup one will enjoy with their Fishball Minced Meat Noodles any time of the day.
Not feeling fishball noodles for supper? How about some bak chor mee? Open 24 hours, this noodle stall at 302 Foodhouse at Choa Chu Kang is one you can visit whenever the craving strikes.
Here, the hawker’s Mushroom Minced Meat Noodles (S$3.50) is an amazingly fragrant bowl of comfort food, together with a bowl of soup on the side. Mix in some vinegar and chilli to the noodles, minced meat, liver, meatballs and bits of pork lard, to get mouthfuls of toothsome and meaty bak chor mee.
Don’t forget to also savour the soup by the side. Its subtle sweetness makes for a great palate cleanser that will prevent you from feeling too bloated after the meal.
302 Choa Chu Kang Avenue 4, #01-719, Singapore 680302
Daily: 24 hours
Most of us are aware of Ah Huat, a grandfather mascot of a Malaysian brand of White Coffee. From sachets of white coffee, Ah Huat has taken a bold step to venture into opening cafes as part of their business. Introducing, Ah Huat Cafe.
The cafe’s Sweet and Sour Chicken Rice Bowl (S$7.50) is a dish that is local and close to heart. Although some might consider this dish on the pricey side, the portion is nonetheless generous and had a favourable quality of taste.
Otherwise, you can always opt for their Pumpkin Kaya Toast (S$3.80) as a light snack that goes hand in hand with their signature cup of kopi any time of the day!
2 Bukit Batok West Avenue 7, HomeTeamNS Clubhouse, #01-09C, Singapore 659003
+65 6334 1621
Daily: 8am – 9pm
While most hawker stalls sell multiple dishes, Mian Wang 1971 only has six dishes on its menu, five of which feature its signature Hokkien mee.
The dish that intrigued our curiosity here is their Salted Egg Calamari Hokkien Mee (S$5.50), a unique pairing of savoury Hokkien mee with crispy salted egg calamari. The calamari rings are coated in a thin layer of salted egg batter and fried till a gorgeous golden brown. Taste-wise, it had that characteristic sharp, cheese-like salted egg taste with a rich buttery flavour and a lingering spicy aftertaste from the chilli padi.
It is, however, the Hokkien mee which is the star in this dish. The noodles are springy and firm. Drenched in a thick gravy with a strong wok hei taste, this is a plate that has the perfect noodle-to-gravy ratio that is absolutely slurp-worthy.
Fatty Weng is famous for its Sliced Fish Soup (from S$4), which, although simple and plain-looking, is packed with flavour. The salted vegetable added gives that slightly savoury tartness that normal salt can’t achieve.
Comforting bowls of Sliced Fish Soup aside, the hawker also serves other local delights like carrot cake, oyster omelette and char kway teow which are all quite well-received. Do note that the wait can get pretty long during lunch timings, so be sure to head over early if you want to enjoy delicious fish soup.
155 Bukit Batok Street 11, #01-324, Singapore 650155
Daily: 11am – 10pm
At Zheng Wei 正味 Duck Rice along Bangkit Road, the lunch queue is never-ending. Apart from a classic plate of Braised Duck Rice (from S$3), the stall also has a crowd following for their Braised Duck Kway Teow (from S$3).
Here, you can choose dry or soup versions for the kway teow, but we would recommend getting it dry if you want ferocious sambal with it. The kway teow itself tastes mostly bland, which allowed the duck meat to shine. Not only that, the meat had a good mix of fatty and lean layers, allowing you to savour a combination of soft fats and chewy lean meat in every bite.
The secret ingredient that makes these duck dishes superb is the sambal, an accompaniment that is sharp on the tongue with a pleasant heat when it hits the back of your throat. In this dish, the sambal helps to enhance the flavour of the blander carbs, making it more of an addictive bite.
259 Bangkit Road, #01-34, Singapore 671259
Daily: 5.30am – 2pm
Fans of Korean cuisine would have heard of Ajumma’s and Bukit Panjang Plaza is where it houses one of Ajumma’s latest outlets.
For a spicy treat, the restaurant’s Jjampong (S$17.90) is one that will delight you. Bobbing in the amazingly flavourful broth is a trove of seafood, including the likes of prawns, mussels, squid, and even crab!
If you are looking for a non-spicy treat suitable for both the young and old, Ajumma’s Signature Beef Kalbi (S$14.90) is a crowd favourite that will do the trick. Seasoned with bulgogi sauce, every piece is melt-in-your-mouth tender with a tinge of sweet savouriness. It also comes with a bowl of rice and side dishes—wholesome and delicious.
Singapore is known globally for having multiple types of various and diverse cuisines, and one that has stood the test of time and remains an integral part of our culture is Hainan cuisine. Celebrating the best this cuisine has to offer is The Hainan Story, a food court located within Hillion Mall in Bukit Panjang.
Choose to start your day right with their Homemade Gula Melaka Kaya and Butter Toast set (S$4.80), which includes a soft-boiled egg and an option of either coffee or tea from The Hainan Story’s Coffee and Toast stall.
Otherwise, for a more satisfying option, the food court’s Mama Wee Curry Chicken Drumstick Set (S$7.80) from the famous Newspaper Hainanese Chicken Rice and the Sliced Meat Porridge Set (S$8.50) from Ah Chiang’s Traditional Porridge both makes for a toothsome meal any time of the day.
Although Karu’s Indian Banana Leaf Restaurant’s address is technically at Upper Bukit Timah, its location, in fact, is more in the area of Bukit Panjang.
Considered as one of the best Indian food places in Singapore, the robust Curry Fish Head (from S$26) here is a must-try for classic Indian cuisine. Served on a real banana leaf, their Curry Fish Head along with the free-flow biryani rice and papadum makes for an authentic hands-on experience simulating a meal in India!
Located at a coffeeshop near Bukit Gombak MRT station, Meng Kee Seafood is a zi char stall that is often bustling at dinnertime.
Apart from a communal meal, solo diners can also try dishes like their Hor Fun (S$4). We were much delighted by the small and thinly sliced strips of rice noodles which were light and savoury. Furthermore, the dish was rounded off well with thick and succulent pieces of pork meat as well as well-cooked prawns.
We would highly recommend this place as a hearty hangout place with both family and friends.
359 Bukit Batok Street 31, Singapore 650359
+65 6563 1149
Daily: 2pm – 2am
Instead of going for the usual, common sliced fish bee hoon, why not treat yourself to a bowl of Tom Yam Sliced Fish Soup (S$4.50) from 169 May Fish Soup?
To our delight, the dish was a good blend of flavours upon tucking into it. Not only was the portion very generous, but the fish slices were also fresh and thick, with no tinge of fishy stench.
Contrary to our preconceived notion of tom yam soup resembling that of the Thai-style tom yam goong, the soup for this dish was not as thick and overpowering, allowing the natural sweetness of the fish slices to shine.
2 Bukit Panjang Ring Road, #01-12, Singapore 679947
+65 9827 5724
Daily: 9am – 8pm
Residents of the matured Bukit Panjang estate will be very much familiar with the variety of good food available at Kim San Leng Food Centre. One such dish is definitely the Meatball Noodle (S$3.00) from Million Fishball Noodle.
Even with the absence of ingredients such as vegetables and mushrooms, this humble bowl managed to steal our heat with the immaculate taste of its handmade meatballs which were chewy and oh-so-flavourful. Along with the blend of chilli and sweet sauce coating each and every strand of the mee pok base, this bowl of Meatball Noodles makes for a cheap yet satisfying meal we will choose to have any time of the week.
259 Bukit Panjang Ring Road, #01-36, Singapore 671259
Daily: 9am – 10pm
A large and prominent zi char stall, Lian Soon Huat Live Seafood is a stall that is hard to miss when one visits Kim San Leng Food Centre. Apart from the commonly zi char dishes such as hor fun, mui fan and ee mee, Lian Soon Huat offers a menu made up of a variety of good seafood dishes.
The must-order here at Lian Soon Huat Live Seafood is none other than their Red Chilli Crab (from S$31). Stir-fried in a semi-thick, sweet and savoury chilli-based sauce, the chilli crab here is best savoured with fried mantou or a simple bowl of fragrant white rice.
For a less sinful option, opt for their Fish Head Steamboat (from S$33). Rich, milky and full of flavour, this steamboat makes for the perfect option, especially on a wet, rainy day.
A popular cafe known by many Westies for their waffles and gelatos, Beans & Cream aims to serve quality artisan ice cream using natural, wholesome ingredients rather than the typical mass-produced varieties.
Its heartland location keeps costs low, making the desserts here affordable for the neighbourhood crowd. The flavour selection here is mostly on the safe side with an array of classics such as Matcha, Thai Milk Tea, and Earl Grey (S$3 for single scoop, +S$0.80 for premium flavours).
While you are visiting, do give their Waffles and Ice cream (from S$6.50) a try. Considering how many other cafes are charging more than S$10 for a dessert like this, the Waffles and Ice Cream at Beans & Cream is definitely a steal!
The Pork Belly Ban Mian (S$5) at Xin Ban Mian is a dish worth trying when one visits Bukit Panjang Hawker Centre and Market. This dish is made up of ingredients that are different from the commonly found ban mian from most hawker centres and food courts in Singapore.
The pork belly slices were thin, crispy and chewy upon bite however, we especially love the minced meat in the ban mian here. It has a peppery flavour to it, which is pleasant. Unlike the minced meat from other ban mian places, the one at this stall is soft and easy to bite, and does not contain any gritty bits at all.
The soup in this bowl is also sweet in taste, clear and not too oily, giving the entire dish a warm, soothing taste.
2 Bukit Panjang Ring Road, #01-16, Singapore 679947
Daily: 7am – 5pm
Quite a different take on Singapore dry prawn noodles, Chin Choon Prawn Noodles‘ Pork Intestine Noodle (S$4) is tossed in sweet dark soy sauce and served with pork innards along with the shelled prawns. The soup is fragrant and sweet with the aroma of prawn shells pairing really well with the noodles.
One of the best prawn noodles in Singapore you won’t want to miss if you stay in the West area of Bukit Panjang, approximately 5 minutes away from the Bukit Panjang LRT.
265 Bukit Batok East Avenue 4, Singapore 650265
Tue to Sun: 6.30am – 3pm
Helmed by a chef who has had years of experience managing the kitchens of Din Tai Fung, Cheval Chi Bao is a restaurant with a menu featuring a kaleidoscope of wallet-friendly zi char dishes.
An appetiser that tickled our fancy was the Grandma’s Prawn Balls (S$13.80), little balls of delight which were handmade fresh, from scratch, daily at Cheval Chi Bao. Studded with water chestnuts, spring onions and chopped pieces of prawns, these golden-brown balls will kick off your meal to a pleasant start with its fresh mix of flavours and fun melange of textures.
Elsewhere, the Hainanese Kampung Chicken (S$23.80) is a boisterous crowd-pleaser that will delight both the young and old. Served as a whole and neatly fanned out to look like a bird that is ready to take flight, the white steamed chicken was texturally sinful to the lips; unbelievably moist and tender.
Nestled in an inconspicuous corner in one of Bukit Batok’s many coffee shops is Soon Yee Claypot Rice, a humble eatery that offers a plethora of dishes, ranging from Claypot Rice to Tom Yum Soup to Crispy Soft Shell Crab.
The eatery’s Grilled Eel Claypot Rice (S$9) is a modern twist with a contemporary flair that we very much enjoyed. Prized for its soft, fatty rich meat, the store managed to unlock the unadulterated flavour of the Japanese eel. It was tender to-the-bite and glazed with a sweetened soy-based sauce.
Even though being slightly more pricey when compared to the ordinary clay pot rice, this luscious unctuous meat makes up for its price tag.
150 Bukit Batok West Avenue 6, Successland Eating House, #01-246, Singapore 650150
+65 9018 6897
Thu to Tue: 5pm – 9pm
Closed on Mon
Putting a spin on your usual curry rice, Gorilla Curry is where you can head to if you are looking for curry rice with popular ingredients like salted egg and braised pork.
If you are a fan of salted egg, you will enjoy their Salted Egg Calamari Curry Rice (S$5.50). A plate comes with a substantial amount of calamari and rice with a side of vegetables and a sunny-side up.
Compared to the salted egg dishes that we’ve had at other hawker stalls, the calamari pieces on this plate had a more prominent salty and eggy taste which we enjoyed. Drench in rich curry gravy, the mild spice of the curry made Gorilla Curry’s Salted Egg Calamari Curry Rice one that is undeniably addictive and satisfying.