With the increasing popularity of sweet dessert treats in Singapore such as ice cream & waffles, cakes and more, this food guide will focus on cafes selling Hong Kong style and traditional local desserts.

Ah huh, those selling Mango Pomelo Sago, Steamed Milk, Almond Pastes, Chendol, Shaved Ice and more.

Many of these shops can be found at Chinatown and Bugis along Liang Seah Street, but we are starting to find more opening at later hours of the day. Some of the other notable names include Tong Shui Desserts (People’s Park Centre), Ren Ren Desserts (Siglap Centre), and Dessert Bowl 一碗甜品 (Serangoon Garden).

Yatkayan Dessert 一家人
Fortune Centre #02-08 190 Middle Road Singapore 188979
Tel: +65 9631 2359
Opening Hours: 1:30pm – 10pm (Mon, Wed, Thurs), 1:30pm – 11pm (Fri – Sun), Closed Tues

One Of The Best Chendol At Fortune Centre Near Bugis
Hidden on the second level of Fortune Centre, the name “Yatkayan” means “one family”, and you may just spot members of the Tang family serving and behind the kitchen.

Signature desserts there include Walnut Paste ($4.00), Black Sesame Paste ($3.50), Almond Cream ($3.50), Steamed Egg ($3.20), Almond & Barley Beancurd ($3.50), Black Sesame & Almond ($3.50), Chendol ($3.20), and Fresh Mango with Ice Cream ($5.00).

I ordered the Walnut & Black Sesame ($4.00) and was pleasantly surprised at how close it tasted to the top-notch shops in Hong Kong.

The creamy consistency which is neither too rich nor thin; not being too sweet; and the warmth of it all.

All their warm dessert pastes such as the walnut, sesame and almond are hand-grind and squeezed freshly daily.

They do not take short cut in their desserts, for example no mixing of pre-mix powder or pastes, or artificial flavouring like essences to their desserts. Yatkayan (Middle Road)

Tian Wang 甜旺
145 Jalan Besar Singapore 208863
Opening Hours: 3pm – 3am (Mon – Sun)

Mahjong Themed Local Dessert Cafe That Opens Till 3AM At Jalan Besar
Tian Wang 甜旺 is a local dessert café that opens till 3AM daily, located next to Butter Studio at 145 Jalan Besar.

Just so you know: the shop is a family-owned business, and the interior is mahjong-themed as that is what all of them love to play.

Dessert choices include D24 Durian Mousse ($6), Durian Sago ($5.80), Durian Bubur Cha Cha ($5.80), Mango Sago ($4.20), Coconut Milk Mango Ice ($4.20), Barley Ginkgo Nut ($3.80), Bubur Cha Cha ($3.80), Red Bean with Lotus Seeds ($4.20), Honeydew Popping ($4.20), Peach Gum ($6.80) and more.

Some of the recipes for the more traditional desserts such as Orh Nee, Sesame, Almond and Peanut pastes are passed down from the late grandmother of the family.

However, the owners also improvised the menu a little to attract a younger dining crowd.

Go for the Yam Paste with Pumpkin and Ginkgo Nut ($4.80) which was smooth (without clumps) and not too greasy or sweet at all.

Orh Nee that taste almost tasted quite homemade, in a good way. Tian Wang 甜旺 (Jalan Besar)

Sweet Hut 甜秘密
654 Geylang Rd, Geylang Lor 40, Singapore 389584
Opening Hours: 3pm – 4am (Mon – Sun)

IG-Worthy Colourful Dessert Shop Opens Till 4AM Daily At Geylang
Sweet Hut 甜秘密 opens till 4am daily at Geylang Lor 40. It is actually just short walk from Paya Lebar MRT station.

Here, you will find a huge, 50-seater Instagram-worthy space (so people come here more for the vibes really for the food).

There are varied themes in different corners, ranging from a blue floral backdrop to a golden cage, tatami area or even seats shaped like a rolling dice and Rubik’s cube.

Desserts such as Durian Sago ($6.90), D24 Durian Mousses ($6.90), Bird’s Nest ($15 – $28), Herbal Gui Ling Gao ($2.30), Almond/ Walnut/ Peanut/ Sesame Paste ($3.80), Yam Paste with Pumpkin & Ginkgo ($5.80) and Honeydew Sago ($4.30) can be found on their menu.

The Mango Lemongrass Pearl ($5.80) came with a layer of lemongrass Ai-yu jelly at the bottom layer, topped with crushed ice, fruit pearls and mango cubes.

There were different textures in a bowl, from the soft and chewy mango cubes, to the smooth Ai-yu jelly, firmer fruit pearls and crushed ice.

The mango cubes were sweet, whereas the jelly was lightly infused with lemongrass without overpowering the taste. Not the best around, but good supper dessert place. Sweet Hut 甜秘密 (Geylang)

Ah Chew Desserts
1 Liang Seah Street, #01-10/11 Liang Seah Place Singapore 189032
Tel: +65 6339 8198
Opening Hours: 12:30pm – 12am (Mon – Thurs), 12:30pm – 1am (Fri), 1:30pm – 1am (Sat), 1:30pm – 12am (Sun, PH)

181 Thomson Road, Goldhill Shopping Centre, Singapore 307627
Tel: +65 6254 8198
Opening Hours: 12:30pm – 12am (Mon – Sun)

The ‘Pioneer’ Of Local Dessert Shops
Ah Chew Desserts is one of Singapore’s most known dessert shops, which started humbly at a small shop space at Liang Seah Street.

Signature desserts include Durian Mango Sago with Pomelo ($5.80), Milk Steamed Egg with Red Bean ($3.80), Black Glutinous Rice with Vanilla Ice Cream ($4.20), Durian Sago Desserts ($6.50), Hashima Red Date Soup ($9), and White Fungus Papaya with Almond ($3.50).

The Mango Sago and Pomelo is included with a touch of coconut cream instead of some which use evaporated milk, giving it fragrance and extra texture.

The sweetness of the ripe, juicy mango chunks is complimented by the refreshing, citrus pomelo pulps that bursts and crunch at every mouthful. Some people like the small crushed ice used, which I am more indifferent to.

The Fresh Milk Steam Egg is so smooth that it trickles down your throat. You have the option of having it coffee-flavoured, or red bean-flavoured which would give it some bite. Ah Chew Desserts (Liang Seah Street)

Jin Yu Man Tang Dessert Shop 金玉满堂甜品
66 East Coast Road, The Flow #01-03 Singapore 428778
+65 6214 3380
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 10:30pm (Mon – Sun)

Smooth Hong Kong Style Milk Puddings And Mango Pomelo Sago At East Coast
Jin Yu Man Tang is located at Katong, and some of its specialties include the Ginger Milk Pudding 姜撞奶 ($4.00), Shun De Double Layer Milk 顺德双皮奶 ($3.60), Peach Gum with Milk 桃胶鲜牛奶 ($4.50), Mango with Mini Rice Ball 芒果小丸子 ($5.00), and Deep Fried Milk 炸牛奶 ($5.50).

The Ginger Milk Pudding ($4.00) is probably their hero product, made on the spot only after ordering.

First you get a bowl of ginger mixture, after which milk would be poured into it. Wait for about 4 minutes or so, then the milk would turn into smooth-wobbly pudding.

The signature Shun De Double Layer Milk ($3.60) originated from Shunde in Foshan China. You can also choose other toppings such as red bean, mango, lotus seeds, walnut, almond, and papaya.

The milk pudding was incredibly soft, and melt-in-your-mouth. Jin Yu Man Tang Dessert Shop (East Coast)

Sweet Thoughts by M.O.D
50 Hougang Ave 1 #01-00, JForte Sportainment Centre, Singapore 538885
Tel: +65 9738 6648
Opening Hours: 12pm – 10pm (Tues – Thurs, Sun), 12pm – 11pm (Fri, Sat), Closed Mon

Orh Nee & Hojicha Shaved Ice And Desserts At Kovan
Known for pushing his boundary and creating visually captivating edible-art desserts, an extensive menu of 15 hot and cold desserts is created by Chef Francis to interpret “tong shui” (糖水).

The menu is divided into both Hot and Cold desserts, consisting of Paste ($4 – $4.90), Steamed Pudding ($5.50) or Shaved Ice ($6.90 – $9.90) respectively.

Digging into Black Sesame Paste ($4), the rich, nutty roasted black sesame has a smooth and creamy texture which is both familiar and homely.

The ingenious addition of the Ginger Pandan Cloud adds a tinge of sweetness and fluffiness to the combination, whereas the coconut crips add more chewiness to the entire bowl of liquid. Sweet Thoughts by M.O.D (Hougang)

Dessert First 糖水先
8 Liang Seah Street #01-04 Singapore 189029
Tel: +65 6333 0428
Opening Hours: 12:30pm – 12:30pm – Mon – Thurs), 12:30pm – 1:30pm (Fri – Sat), 12pm – 12:30am (Sun)

Halal-Certified Dessert Shop At Bugis
Halal certified Dessert First糖水先 is established since 2009, located on the ‘dessert street’ at Liang Seah.

Its mouth-watering desserts include Shaved or Snow Ice, Mango or Durian Pomelo, Home-made Waffles and more.

To understand the difference, “shaved ice” means clear ice shavings, while “snow ice” is flavoured ice shavings.

The variety is extensive, with the most popular D24 durian, mango, to green tea, honeydew, chocolate, and strawberry. Prices of the dessert range from $3.80 to $11.50.

Ji De Chi Dessert 記得吃甜品
Star Vista, 1 Vista Exchange Green, #B1-37B The Star Vista, Singapore 138617
Opening Hours: 11am – 10pm

Dessert Chain In Many Parts Of Singapore
Ji De Chi serves up a range of dessert, with signatures of Durian Snowflake with Black Glutinous Rice ($7.60), Yam Sweet-in-Heart Sago ($5.60), Mango Pomelo Sago with Grass Jelly ($5.60), Matcha Tofu Snowflake ($6.60), and Durian Snowy Ice ($7.90).

There are outlets at Novena Square 2, Ang Mo Kio, Paya Lebar Square, Hillion Mall, Westgate, Century Square, Jurong Point, and Causeway Point.

Mei Heong Yuen Desserts 味香园甜品
63-67 Temple Street, Singapore 058611
Tel: +65 6221 1156
Opening Hours: 12pm – 10pm (Tues – Sun), Closed Mon

Specialises in Different Varieties of Pastes and Steamed Egg Pudding
Mei Heong Yuen Dessert 味香园甜品 is best known for its Peanut Paste ($3.50), which is because it has roots connected to the iconic Farmer Brand ground nuts.

The peanut paste is fragrant and delicately grounded to give a smooth texture with no presence of any peanut bits, also not too sweet.

The other two “heavenly kings” are Sesame and Almond pastes ($3.50 each).

For a more cooling treat, customers go for the Taiwan Snow Ice ($5.50) with thin smooth mouth-feel sheets, in flavours of Mango, Green Tea, Durian, Soursop, Sesame, Almond, Strawberry, Mocha, Banana Chocolate, Milk Tea (yes), to even Chendol.

Chow Zan Dessert
801 North Bridge Road, Singapore 198769
Opening Hours: 3pm – 11pm (Mon, Wed – Sun), Closed Tues

Local Dessert Cafe With White Chendol, Orh Nee And Peach Gum Milk
The name “Chow Zan” is a colloquial term which means “extremely good”.

The humble-looking dessert shop brings about a selection of traditional hot and cold desserts – some with modern twists, ranging from White Chendol ($4.00), Mango Sago, ($4.20), Black Sesame Paste ($3.50), and Peach Gum with Milk ($4.50).

I was recommended the White Chendol ($4.00), also available in Red Bean and Durian versions ($4.50, $5.50). Fairly interesting with a differentiating factor.

What you get are these white coconut strips with a firmer bite instead of the usual pandan ones. But they would also mean there won’t be that particular pandan fragrance and may not photograph as striking as the typical Chendol.

The shaved ice was quite smooth, topped coconut cream fresh-tasting with mildly-sweet red bean. Even though there was some gula melaka added, the dessert was thankfully not too sweet. Chow Zan Dessert (North Bridge Road)

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* Compiled by Daniel Ang @DanielFoodDiary and Nicholas Tan @stormscape.

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