Last Updated: April 6, 2021
Tampines is located in the far East of Singapore — practically another island to some. However, as typical Singaporeans, we are always willing to travel for good food. A good number of us like myself do not live in the East, so I thought it’d be fitting for me to round up 18 under-S$10 places to satisfy your stomach in Tampines to convince non-Easties their travel fare (and time) will be worth it!
Located at the newest mall in Tampines, Im Thai Kitchen serves up authentic Thai food at an affordable price. I really like Thai food and was excited to try this new place. Run by a Thai owner, I had high expectations for her offerings.
Indeed, I was not let down. Her Minced Meat With Hot Basil Leaf (S$5.50) comes with white rice, a glistening fried egg and lip-smacking spicy pork or chicken. We had the pork version, which was fattier and I much prefer that. This dish was savoury and delectable, with the rich sauce soaked into the rice for a mouthful of deliciousness.
Im Thai Kitchen: 1 Tampines Walk, Hawker Centre @ Our Tampines Hub, #01-40, Singapore 528523 | Opening hours: 11am – 12am (Daily) | Tel: +65 9224 5992 | Facebook
There’s something about a warm bowl of noodles that’s always so comforting especially on a rainy day. Here at 456 Mian Fen Guo, they serve up just that.
The Mian Fen Guo (S$3.50) came with a generous portion of minced meat, a soft-boiled egg, kai lan, braised mushrooms and ikan bilis. They may look like pretty ordinary ingredients, but they hand-make their noodles.
Order this and you can witness the kitchen staff prepping them upon order. The kueh was silky smooth and soft yet springy with a nice bite to it.
456 Mian Fen Guo: 844 Tampines Street 82, #01-131, Singapore 520844 | Opening hours: 9am – 7pm (Mon & Tue, Thur & Fri), 9am – 3pm (Sat & Sun), Closed on Wed | Facebook
This homely cafe was an accidental find, but it has now become one of my favourite ice cream waffle places. Three’s A Crowd is located directly at Tampines West MRT, so it is pretty accessible as well.
I decided to get the Pandan Waffles (S$7) with a scoop of Salted Caramel Ice Cream (S$3). The waffles came with a nice golden brown crust, and as we cut into it, a bright green shade was revealed. I loved how crisp it was on the outside, yet soft and fluffy on the inside. I dare say, the waffles are just as good as Creamier’s. My only gripe was that there wasn’t much pandan taste to them.
The Salted Caramel Ice Cream was good too as it wasn’t too sweet. It was creamy and smooth with a distinct saltiness. There is also a 50% off your second waffle, which makes it all the more worth it.
Food courts tend to be more expensive as we get to enjoy our food in the comfort of air-conditioning. However, sometimes we end up sacrificing the quality of foods. This is not applicable to some stalls, such as L32 Handmade Noodles.
Their popularity is evident from the snaking long queues, regardless of the time of the day. I got the Dry Meatball You Mian (S$5.50) due to the humid weather and I didn’t want any hot soup. I quickly realised why it was such a favourite.
The noodles were cooked al dente, which gave it a nice bite. The sauce was a tad too sweet for my liking but still palatable. I liked that the pork balls were springy yet tender, and the garnishes helped further elevate the flavours in the bowl of noodles.
The star of the show was the soup at the side. An egg was cracked into it, reminding me of egg drop soup. The broth was very flavourful with a subtle sweetness. With the silkiness of the egg, it was so good. I then understood why so many people were still ordering the soup version and I would probably follow suit the next time. Definitely worth breaking a sweat for.
L32 Handmade Noodles: 10 Tampines Central 1, Tampines 1 Kopitiam, #05-05, Singapore 529536 | Opening hours: 11am – 9.30pm (Daily) | Facebook
Located at the basement of Century Square, Beef Bros is one of the newer additions to the food scene. They serve up halal-certified meats that are flame-torched to perfection.
We got their Signature Beef Cubes 130g (S$7.90), with the addition of Mentaiko Sauce (S$2). They are only prepared upon order, which I appreciated. After generously layering the Mentaiko Sauce on top, they are then blow-torched for a smokey finish.
I really liked how the beef cubes were nicely torched on the outside, succulent on the inside. My only gripe was that the cubes were kinda inconsistent, with some being slightly tougher. The Mentaiko Sauce was delectable and enhanced the flavour of the beef. It was creamy with a nice crunch from the ebiko. There are also free flow sauces on the side, for those who love their dips.
Nasi lemak is one of those foods that’s easily accessible, but to find a place that serves a good plate may be more of a challenge. Lawa Bintang is one of those places that serve up a decent plate of deliciousness. They serve a wide variety of ingredients including seafood, which are freshly imported from Malaysia daily.
I got the Nasi Lemak Udang ($9), which came with seven large prawns and fragrant nasi lemak rice. The prawns were not only huge in size but juicy and fresh. The spicy-sweet sauce brushed on top of it further elevated the flavour of the prawns. I also appreciated that the rice was distinctly coconutty while maintaining its fluffiness. The yolk was also oozy, which is always a good thing.
Lawa Bintang: 9008 Tampines Street 93, Singapore 528843 | Opening hours: 8am – 2pm (Tues to Thurs), 10am – 2pm (Fri), 9am – 2pm (Sat & Sun), Closed on Mon | Facebook
With the extensive range of beverage stalls in Singapore, it takes something special for one to have a perpetual queue like Teafolia. They are known for their freshly brewed fruit teas and stirring milk series.
I decided to try the Strawberry & Peach Duo (S$4.90 for M) as it was recommended by the cashier. It was pleasing to the eye, and it tasted as good as it looked. The tea taste was distinct, with a slight sweetness that was not too overwhelming. It was light and refreshing, and I liked the addition of fresh fruits for varying texture.
Those who love their fried chicken, here is another rendition for you. StuffedWing, which is conveniently located at Tampines Mall’s Kopitiam, serves chicken wings that are stuffed with various dishes such as Nasi Lemak and Nyonya Curry.
The wings on display are only 80% cooked, and then deep-fried upon order so that the chicken would always be piping hot and crispy.
I decided to go for the Signature Nasi Lemak (S$3.80), and I liked how the flavours went together very well overall. The sambal packed a punch, which enhanced the savouriness of the wings. While the chicken flesh was succulent, the rice was lacking in aroma. However, I did appreciate the fact that it wasn’t overly oily.
Being a dessert lover, I had to feature some sweet stuff from the East that I really enjoy. Mellow Pan serves up unique Melon Pan with a twist, which is essentially Japanese’s take on our Bolo Bun. They use the Melon Pan as a vessel, slathering gelato in between as the filling.
We got the Small (S$6.80), which is served with two scoops of gelato. We chose to go with Avocado and Hokkaido Milk, as the former seemed pretty unique and the latter was a Japanese classic.
I loved how soft and airy the bread was, with a nice crunchy and crumbly cap. The varying textures made it very enjoyable. I appreciated that the smooth gelato wasn’t overly sweet as the cap was sweet enough, balancing the flavours nicely. They also serve generous portions, which is always a good thing.
Mellow Pan: 1 Tampines Walk, Our Tampines Hub, #B1-52B, Singapore 528523 | Opening hours: 11am – 10pm (Mon to Fri), 10am – 10pm (Sat & Sun) | Facebook
Located at Yeo Chuan Huat Food Centre, this plate of goodness from Bee Hong Chicken Rice is only a stone’s throw away from Tampines MRT. While it looks ordinary, they nailed all the aspects of a good plate of chicken rice.
Their Chicken Rice For 1 pax (S$4.20) comes with chicken rice, a plate of thigh meat slathered in sauce and a bowl of soup. While the portion is just ordinary, they definitely nailed their sauce and soup. The sauce was a perfect accompaniment to the tender chicken.
While light, it was full of flavour which helped to bring out the taste of the meat. Dip it into the chilli for a kick of heat. The soup was savoury and appetising, which helped to cut through the slight saltiness of the sauce. I also liked that the fragrant rice was light and fluffy.
Bee Hong Chicken Rice: 509 Tampines Central 1, Yeo Chuan Huat Food Centre, Singapore 520509 | Opening hours: 10am – 10pm (Daily)
I’m sure all of us are familiar with Seoul Garden, one of the OG Korean barbeque places. They have now branched out to open Seoul In A Sandwich, which serves a variety of Korean-inspired sandwiches.
The Seoul Street Toast ($6.50) was such a comforting and filling option. The toasted white bread was layered with chicken ham, an onion-cabbage omelette and cheese. The cheese was also perfectly melted for that cheese-pull, which reminded me of a zhng-ed up version of a grilled cheese sandwich.
Good news, there is currently a promotion of 50% off the second sandwich, which makes them so affordable. Head down over if you don’t want to miss it!
Seoul In A Sandwich: 2 Tampines Central 5, Century Square, #B1-23, Singapore 529509 | Tel: +65 6260 4339 | Opening hours: 10am – 10pm (Daily) | Facebook
Also located at the newly renovated Century Square is Cheese Addiction, which serves raclette cheese on various different food items. As I walked towards the stall, I could already smell the fragrant melted cheese.
The Raclette Tori Karaage (S$6.90) is the best out of the lot, which was served with a side of baby potatoes. I liked how crisp the skin of the chicken bites was and the succulent meat. The extreme long cheese pull I got from mine was definitely a plus too.
Cheese Addiction: 2 Tampines Central 5, Century Square, #B1-39, Singapore 529509 | Opening hours: 10am – 9.30pm (Daily) | Tel: +65 9029 5838 | Facebook
Talk about old school bubble tea shops that were all the hype last time when we were still in school. Penang A1 Chendol takes me back in time with their affordable and delicious smoothies. They have been around for 18 years, which highlights how they are doing something right.
I had to try their Traditional Chendol (S$3), which has the option of being served in smoothie form too. I opted for the normal bowl, and it arrived with a heaping amount of red beans and pandan jelly. This definitely ticked off all the boxes of a good chendol for me.
The caramelised sweetness of the gula melaka went so well with the creaminess of the coconut, with the icy cutting through the richness of this dessert.
We had to get at least one of their smoothies while we were here as well. I decided to go with the Black Forest Smoothie (S$3.50/regular, S$4/large) as I have never tried anything like it before. It was inspired by the lady boss’s cake recipe and as odd as it sounds, it actually worked.
I love how the chocolatey crumbs on top added a crunch factor to the chocolate drink, which was contrasted with the fruity bits within the drink. Chocolate and fruit is such a great combination and I will definitely be back for this.
Penang A1 Chendol: 822 Tampines Street 81, #01-186, Singapore 520822 | Opening hours: 11.30am – 8pm (Mon to Fri), 11.30am – 5pm (Sat & Sun) | Tel: +65 9851 9477 | Facebook
For those who love assam laksa, this may be the one for you. Assam is a difficult flavour to nail as the balance of sour yet palatable is a fine line. However, D’Laksa clearly does it well, with long queues in Malaysia where they originated from.
The Assam Laksa (S$4) here was the perfect amount of tart but not overwhelming. It also came with a generous portion of flaked fish which I appreciated. The combination of tartness from the tamarind sauce, sweetness from the pineapples and savouriness from their prawn paste made the dish very well-rounded.
While their mains may be on the slightly pricey side due to their farm-to-table concept, Mahota Kitchen‘s drinks and dessert are actually pretty affordable. Not only do they have in-house kombucha that’s priced reasonably at S$7, they also offer creative desserts such as Pineapple Coconut Jelly Cake (S$6) and Sweet Potato Ricotta & Black Sesame Cake (S$6).
One thing that I would always go for is their slow-pressed juices. Priced between S$4 to S$5 per bottle, it is cheaper than many other places. The Bamboo Charcoal, Pear, Lemon Juice and Coconut Water (S$5) was refreshing and thirst-quenching. It is also available at their Mahota Market. Those who are more health-conscious, this is the place for you.
As Singaporeans, I’m sure we all love our zi char. With so many zi char stalls, sometimes one needs a signature dish in order to stand out. Here at Jin Hock Seafood Restaurant, they do.
The Double Flavoured Hor Fun ($15) is something I have never seen before. This dish is done two ways, normal hor fun and deep-fried hor fun. Judging by the three thumbs up on the menu, I believe it is a crowd favourite too.
The wok hei of this dish was intense, which elevated the flavours of the dish. The broth was of the perfect starchy consistency, with a crustacean base flavour. I exceptionally liked the contrast of textures between the duo. The deep-fried hor fun was crisp on the outside with a chewy middle for a nice bite whilst the normal hor fun was silky smooth.
The portion was also massive, sufficient for two hungry people or even three small eaters. Divide it accordingly and it is only about S$5 to S$7.50 per person. What a steal for a seafood dish.
Jin Hock Seafood Restaurant: 844 Tampines Street 82, Street 82 Coffee House, Singapore 520844 | Opening hours: 11.30am – 11.30pm (Daily)
Another food court delight is Hong Kong Beef King, serving up premium food at an affordable price.
Located at Century Square’s The Food Market, Hong Kong Beef King came all the way from Hong Kong (hence its name). They are most famous for their beef soup that’s rich in flavour.
I decided to try the Beef, Tendon & Tripe Noodles (Soup) (S$9). It was so comforting with its mellow and savoury notes. The flavour of the soup was intense, yet it was light and appetising. Unfortunately, the beef slices were too tough and chewy for my liking. Luckily, the beef tendons were melt-in-the-mouth which made the bowl satisfactory as a whole.
For the last place, I wanted to feature something close to our hearts. Bakery items tend to be one of our staples, especially for a grab-and-go breakfast. Yamazaki is hands down one of the best ones around with their quality bakes.
One of my favourites is their little mochi bites. This Cheese Mochi (S$0.80 for 1, S$2.20 for 3, S$3.30 for 5) is so good. Bite into it and you can tell how light and airy it is. Yet, it is chewy with a distinct fragrance from the savoury cheese.
They also serve really good bread and cakes too. Every single time I walk past Yamazaki, I leave with a haul of yummy goodies for the next few days.
Yamazaki: 10 Tampines Central 1, Tampines 1, #B1-14, Singapore 529536 | Opening hours: 10am – 10pm (Daily)| Tel: +65 6260 5909
Tampines is huge. With their four big malls, countless coffee shops and cafes, there is no lack of good food there. This is only limited to the places we have been to and tried for ourselves. Do recommend us any other places that you have in mind for good food and we will definitely head over to try them.
Those who do not live in the East, I hope this list will entice you to take a trip to the East for a full day of eating!