Did you know that Tanjong Pagar used to be one of the poorest estates in Singapore? Looking at the towering skyscrapers and fancy office buildings all around today, I find that simply quite unbelievable.
Because of how atas the area looks now, many assume that it’s impossible to find something to eat in the area without splurging.
So, we’ve gone around the bustling CBD area and searched high and low. Here are 10 food spots under S$10 in Tanjong Pagar you can visit without breaking the bank!
1. Rolina Traditional Hainanese Curry Puff
With humble beginnings dating back to the 1950s, Rolina Traditional Hainanese Curry Puff is a well-known curry puff maker.
Their persistence in using traditional preparation methods earned them a Michelin Bib Gourmand award in 2018. They were also one of the new establishments featured at the Michelin Guide Street Food Festival in 2019.
It’s not difficult to see why the hawker stall’s signature Chicken & Egg (S$1.80) curry puffs are so popular. With a buttery crust that’s thin and flaky, biting into it made for a sensational crackle.
Inside, the huge potato and chicken chunks were also aromatically spicy from the large amounts of spices used to flavour the fillings.
For those of you looking for something that’s healthy but still hearty, Lagoon In A Bowl will definitely suit you.
Their Mentaiko Salmon Rice Bowl (S$10) is a premium donburi which features a thick salmon fillet, but that’s not all. It also comes with a rainbow selection of other ingredients! Expect blue butterfly pea rice, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, corn and a sous vide egg.
Mixing the egg into the rice yielded a wonderfully creamy and smooth texture. The blue rice was also fragrant with a subtle flowery aroma. As for the salmon, simply blowtorching it created a smoky flavour which hit all the right notes. Simple, yet satisfying!
3. Grandma Ban Mee (老妈子板面)
Nothing hits the spot like simple, modest hawker food. And if you love ban mian, Grandma Ban Mee (老妈子板面) at Tanjong Pagar’s Amoy Street Food Centre does a really good one.
A bowl of their signature Dry Chilli Ban Mee (S$5.50) comes with ultra-springy noodles and a variety of ingredients. These ingredients include ikan bilis, minced meat, a poached egg, as well as a fiery chilli paste.
Together, they come together in harmony and give the dish a fragrant umami flavour. Prepare to wait for your food though, as these nostalgic dishes are hot favourites especially during lunchtime.
4. Lian He Shao La Fan Mian (聯合燒臘飯.麵)
For some good roasted meats over rice and noodles, Lian He Shao La Fan Mian (聯合燒臘飯.麵) is the place to go.
Located in Maxwell Food Centre at Tanjong Pagar, their Mixed Meat Rice (S$3.50/S$4.50) comes with a decent portion of barbecued and roasted pork. The siew yoke was crackly and scrumptious, while the char siew made for a good contrast with its succulence.
They also drench their meats and rice with a generous and luscious glaze of decadent sauce. Many customers say it completely takes the dish’s flavour profile to another level because of the extra sweetness it adds.
1 Kadayanallur Street, Maxwell Food Centre, #01-71, Singapore 069184
Mon to Sat: 11.30am – 8pm
Closed on Sun
5. Rojak. Popiah & Cockle (囉喏. 薄饼. 鲜蛤)
The only rojak store in Maxwell Food Centre, Rojak. Popiah & Cockle (囉喏. 薄饼. 鲜蛤) serves their Rojak (S$3/S$5/S$8) with an intensely rich sauce. Many customers opt for the addition of century eggs as they further enrich the dish’s flavour with their subtle bitterness.
The stall’s Popiah (S$3) is also popular for having delightfully soft skin. Not only that, customers always sing praises about the generous amount of turnips in the filling. The fiery sambal chilli that they pair their popiahs with is also quite a showstopper.
1 Kadayanallur Street, Maxwell Food Centre, #01-56, Singapore 069184
Daily: 11.30am – 8.30pm
Guess what Beigelhaus sells? Stuffed bagels, of course! This Muslim-owned bagel cafe first opened in April 2022 and is located at Robinson Square in Tanjong Pagar. Whilst their standard stuffed bagels such as Egg Sheeran (S$12.90) and Chilli Con Jovi (S$16.90) are easily above budget, luckily Beigelhaus also has budget-friendly bagel options.
Their Schmears options are bagels filled with homemade schmears (spreads) and are affordably priced. You have options like Kombu Butter (S$7) which has kombu-infused butter, Peanut Butter & Jam (S$8), S’mores (S$9), Jam & Cheese (S$7) and Cream Cheese (S$6).
144 Robinson Road, Robinson Square, #01-02, Singapore 068908
+65 9027 1332
Mon to Thu: 8.30am – 6.30pm
Fri & Sat: 11am – 8pm
Closed on Sun
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For a more unique eating experience, you can consider The Little Red Hen at Tanjong Pagar’s Amoy Street Food Centre, as it serves the rare nasi ulam, a rare herb-infused rice dish. What’s special about the rice is that it is mixed with finely chopped herbs that include ginger flower, kaffir lime leaf, turmeric leaf and Vietnamese mint leaf. It is said to have natural antioxidant properties.
You can get both the Nasi Ulam with Ayam Percik set and the Nasi Ulam with Beef Rendang set at S$8.50 each. You can even have more premiums options like the Nasi Ulam with Udang Kunyit set (Turmeric Prawn) and Nasi Ulam with Ikan Pepes (Steamed Fish wrapped in Banana Leaves) set at S$10 each.
With a dedicated spot plastered with pictures of the stall owner with celebrities, it’s hard not to spot Celebrities Big Prawn Noodle among the other hawker stalls at Tanjong Pagar Plaza Market & Food Centre, or wonder about the origin of its name. The owner even managed to get some celebrities to patronise his stall.
Well, with a low budget of S$10, you can get their Pork Ribs Big Prawn Mee (S$5.50) and Prawn Noodle (S$5.50). The broth had a clean and light taste to it without sacrificing that full-bodied savouriness. The prawns also tasted fresh though they weren’t deshelled.
6 Tanjong Pagar Plaza, Tanjong Pagar Plaza Market & Food Centre, #02-30, Singapore 018006
Mon to Sat: 9am – 3.30pm
Closed on Sun
Newly opened Beans.Factory has a hybrid of both traditional and modern desserts, and you can find it at 100 AM, which is a short walk from Tanjong Pagar MRT. Beans.Factory is a well-known dessert brand in Malaysia with over 10 outlets from Johor all the way to Kuala Lumpur and astonishingly only started back in 2021.
They didn’t skimp on options as they brought their whole range of desserts to Singapore, which includes their signature tau fu fah or better known as beancurd around here. You have options such as Taro Ball Tau Fu Fah (S$8.50), Jelly Taro Tau Fu Fah (S$7.50) and Matcha Red Bean Tau Fu Fah (S$7.50). You can even create your own dessert with base options like Tau Fu Fah (S$4.90) and Mango Shave Ice (S$5.90).
Yes, you can get authentic Japanese food, from Japan mind you, for less than S$10 with Unatoto located at Guoco Tower at Tanjong Pagar. Unatoto is well known in Japan for its pocket-friendly prices and fast service. It’s more impressive to note as unagi, which is primarily what they serve, is generally expensive and takes a long time to cook.
That S$10 will serve you well as you can get their signature Unadon (S$9.50), Teriyaki Chicken Don (S$8.50), Unameshi (S$8.50). If rice isn’t your thing, you can even opt for noodle options like Udon (S$8) and Soba (S$8), which are both available hot or cold.
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