Singapore foodies love their dim sum. And while dim sum usually considered a morning type of food, many of these eateries are popular due to its supper dim offering.
Here are 18 dim sum eateries in Singapore where you can find more affordable choices:
Swee Choon Tim Sum Restaurant 瑞春点心餐厅
183/185/187/189/191/193 Jalan Besar Singapore 208882
Opening Hours: 9am – 3pm, 6pm – 4am (Mon, Wed – Fri) 9am – 4pm, 6pm – 4am (Sat – Sun), Closed Tues
Established in 1962, Swee Choon Tim Sum Restaurant 瑞春点心餐厅 (they spell it as ‘T’) has a long history of serving dim sum in a casual coffee-shop setting.
I can safely say the food is not the type you will scream “excellent!”, and seriously most items range about 5 to 7/10 in taste.
However, it is an affordable, fast, no-frills place that has fond memories for many.
Its price point and environment are “in-between”. While it is not a posh restaurant, there is air-con and service is relatively quick and efficient despite the long queue of people.
Swee Choon’s signatures include Mee Suah Kueh, Sichuan Chilli Oil Wanton, Siew Mai, Har Kow, Salted Egg Yolk Custard Bun, Carrot Cake and Beancurd Prawn Roll.
My favourite item there is Swee Choon’s very own signature dish – the Mee Sua Kueh ($2.80) which is a deep-fried vermicelli cake.
I used to like this a lot because it is special enough, like a carrot cake in shape. I recently went back to find out that the taste and execution have somewhat changed from before, but still not bad. Swee Choon Tim Sum Restaurant (Jalan Besar)
Sum Dim Sum 心点心
161 Jalan Besar Singapore 208876
Tel: +65 9005 9381
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 3pm, 5pm – 11pm (Mon – Fri), 10:30am – 3pm, 5pm – 11:30pm (Sat) 10:30am – 3pm, 5pm – 10:30pm (Sun)
Sum Dim Sim 心点心 is located right opposite Berseh Food Centre, of short walking distance from ‘competitor’ Swee Choon.
Its menu is extensive with steamed, pan-fried, deep-fried, baked items, noodles, porridge, rice and desserts. Most baskets and plates are priced ranging in the $4 – $6 region.
The recommended items include Fresh Prawn Dumpling with Asparagus, Wolfberry with Mushroom Dumpling, Bamboo Roll with Oyster Sauce, Spare Ribs with Black Bean Sauce, Golden Custard Bun, Pan-Fried Carrot Cake, Signature Hot & Spicy Dumpling, and Deep Fried Yam Dumpling.
The very one item to get would be the Baked Crispy Pork Bun ($6) – that item which is probably Tim Ho Wan’s most iconic.
You would notice the slight green hue on Sum Dim Sum’s version, the reason being there is pandan added. Therefore, you may even smell that delicate sweet fragrance as you take small bites. Sum Dim Sum (Jalan Besar)
Dim Sum Haus
57 Jalan Besar, Singapore 208809
Tel: +65 6909 0777
Opening Hours: 10:30am – 10:30pm (Mon – Fri), 9:30am – 10:30pm (Sat), 9:30am – 9:30pm (Sun)
With dim sum handmade and cooked upon order, Dim Sum Haus is the other restaurant along the stretch of Jalan Besar.
While some of the other dim sum eateries are more cramped, Dim Sum Haus has a more inviting interior. Though prices are higher correspondingly.
Popular items include Pan Fried Mushroom Bun ($5.80), Baked Salted Egg Custard Bun ($5.90), Steamed Charcoal Chicken & Shrimp Dumplings ($5.20), Steamed Crispy Rice Roll with Shrimp ($5.50) and Hong Kong Boat Congee ($8.00).
A favourite is the soft Pan Fried Carrot Cake with Chinese Sausage ($4.40), soft and peppered with bits of Chinese sausage and fried shrimps.
The Dim Sum Place
791 North Bridge Road, Singapore 198759
Tel: +65 6655 8787
Opening Hours: 11am – 11pm (Sun – Thurs), 11am – 2am (Fri, Sat)
This is one of the very few Halal-certified Dim Dum places in Singapore.
While pork has been a key ingredient in mainstream Cantonese cuisine, it is interesting to see if replacing it with other ingredients would achieve a similar end product.
Featured items include the Steamed Chicken Siew Mai w/ Shrimp ($5.90), Crystal Shrimp Dumpling ($5.90), Molten Salted Egg Custard Bun ($5.90), Deep Fried Beancurd Skin with Prawn ($5.90), Deep Fried Carrot Cake ($4.90), Deep Fried Wanton ($6.90), DSP Egg Tarts ($4.90).
Congee with Beef & Raw Egg ($9.90) is definitely not so common, and I was surprisingly impressed.
I loved how the congee had a silky, smooth texture. Not forgetting the generous amount of tender beef slices paired with an egg, that would serve as a light nutritious meal.
Fantastic Dim Sum 大三元点心
Bgain @ Lavender Food Court #01-11, ARC 380 Jalan Besar, Singapore 209000
Opening Hours: 7:30am – 7:30pm (Mon – Sun)
Another ex-restaurant chef turns Dim Sum kopitiam stall owner. Fantastic Dim Sum has two outlets – at Blk 119 Aljunied 2 and ARC 380 Jalan Besar.
The most intriguing item at the Jalan Besar still has to be the Siew Mai ($3.30 – $6.80), coming in some creative and non-commonly-seen flavours of Otah, Preserved Vegetables, Yellow Curry, and Truffles. There are also safer choices of Chicken and Abalone Siew Mai.
I had the Otah Siew Mai and thought that it was succulent and also captured the fragrance and mild spiciness of Otah Otah.
To get an all-in-one basket, there is the Fantastic 6 Siew Mai priced at $10.80.
Other Dim Sum you can go for include the Spinach Shrimp Dumpling ($4.50), Chives Crystal Dumpling ($4), Beancurd Roll in Oyster Sauce ($4), Lotus Leaf Glutinous Rice ($3), and Crispy Banana Roll ($2.40).
5-Star Dim Sum
158 Mei Ling Street #01-74, Singapore 140158
Opening Hours: 7am – 9pm (Mon – Sun)
The 5-Star Dim Sum outlet chain with a couple of stalls around is the brainchild of Chef Yiu Wah Tai, who has worked for thirty long years at renowned hotels.
He left to open his dim sum place, and eight outlets have appeared in a short period, from Mei Ling Street, 55 Lengkok Bahru, Rivervale Mall Food Junction, Shun Li Industrial Complex, to 16 Teck Whye Lane.
Every dim sum is freshly made in-store. Key recommendations are the usual favourites: Har Gao and Siew Mai ($4.50). The har gao has chewy crystal skin and fresh prawns, while the Siew Mai ($5.50) was juicy and bursting with sweet flavou.
The menu is expensive with HK Crispy Shrimp Cheong Fun ($5), Ting Zai Porridge ($5.50), Xiao Long Bao ($4.50), Steamed Prawn Siew Mai ($5), Mala Fresh Prawn Beancurd Rolls ($4.50), to even Pork Cutlet La Mian ($5).
Moreover, they are located around the island, so it’s super convenient. The chef is very particular about his dim sum, and the myth is that he throws away every imperfect dim sum. Try it for yourself to see if this is true.
Dim Sum House
1G Yio Chu Kang Road, Singapore 545513
Tel: +65 8328 3369
Opening Hours: 11am – 3pm, 5:30pm – 9pm (Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri), 9am – 3pm, 5:30pm – 9pm (Sat), 9am – 4pm (Sun), Closed Wed
Not to be confused with Dim Sum Haus at Jalan Besar, Dim Sum House is a relatively new store at Yio Chu Kang Road. There is another outlet at Old Airport Road #01-49.
The humble-looking eatery serves items reasonably priced around the $4 to $5 range.
What caught my attention were the adorable animal buns which usually require effort to craft.
While the names are not clearly stated on the menu, there is the “Porcupine” Red Bean Paste Bun ($4.50) and “Chick” Lotus Paste Bun ($4.50).
Though the yellow-chick bao appearance may remind some of Crystal Jade’s version.
The buns were steamed soft and fluffy, generously stuffed with red bean or lotus paste filing. I liked that their paste filling was not so cloyingly sweet, which made it very much enjoyable. Dim Sum House (Yio Chu Kang Road)
126 Dim Sum Wen Dao Shi 揾到食
126 Sims Ave, Singapore 387449
Tel: +65 6746 4757
Opening Hours: 10:30am – 3am (Mon – Sun)
A typical Hong Kong-style eatery at Geylang, the Dim Sum Wen Dao Shi is placed #1 on many people’s list of reliable restaurants to satisfy late-night supper cravings.
Don’t expect anything fanciful in terms of its interior, a casual slightly-cramped space.
But the menu is brimming with an exciting variety of dim sum platters, homemade concoctions, and savory drinks.
The number of items can get quite overwhelming for first timers though, faced with many sheets of paper with hand-written labels and pricing in a green plastic folder.
Some of the store’s specialty are the 115 Crispy Cheese “Tarik”, 3 Fried Prawn Dumpling, 76 Scallop Siew Mai, 862 Crab Tang Hoon (Fried Thai Style).
I also liked that there were more uncommon items found here, such as Mixed Seaweed Roll ($3.80), Fried Crab Balls ($4.50), Fried Cuttlefish Paste with Beancurd Skin ($4.80), To Fried Banana with Mango Roll ($4).
Food is fresh and service is fast considering the number of customers. They used to be opened 24/7 but have changed their operational hours.
Mongkok Dim Sum 旺角點心
214 Geylang Road, Singapore 389274
Tel: +65 8484 8829
Opening Hours: 24 Hours
Affordable and quite authentic, Mongkok Dim Sum is also popular for midnight cravings.
Customers love their Phoenix Prawn, Deep Fried Bean Curd Skin with Shrimp paste, and 3 Yolk Crab Porridge.
The Beef Horfun ($6.80, $14) is labelled as “Geylang Lor 9 Beef Horfun”. If you are wondering WHY, the two are owned by the same group.
Therefore, you would find that their styles are so similar – super-over-tender beef, thick sauce with that touch of spiciness. I think some people would not be able to tell the difference if there was a blind-taste test.
1 Maju Ave, #02-01 MyVillage, Singapore 556679
Opening Hours: 11am – 3pm, 5pm – 10pm (Mon – Sun)
East Bistro 東小馆 is for those who are craving for Cantonese and Teochew dishes, wholesome zi-char style food and a variety of dim sum.
The Chinese restaurant is helmed by acclaimed head Chef Tony Wong, who once spearheaded the well-known Michelin-starred Cantonese Restaurant Lei Garden.
Mushroom Cha Siew Bao ($4.50), Har Kow ($4.80), Siew Mai ($4.80), Steamed Chicken Claw ($4.80), Steamed Pork Rib ($5), Beancurd Shrimp Roll ($5), to Beijing Dumpling ($5) are some of the dim sum items you can expect here.
Do not forget about the Chilled Mango Sago Cream with Pomelo – served with a generous amount of freshly cut pomelo and mango for that sweet pleasure.
Tang Tea House
357 Bedok Road, Singapore 469545
Tel: +65 6445 9100
Opening Hours: 11am – 1am (Mon – Sun)
There are four locations for Tang Tea House – Simpang Bedok, Jalan Kayu, Jurong West and Changi Village.
The Halal-certified eatery does not only offer dim sum, but wide repertoire of items from seafood, noodles (Fried Kway Teow, Mee Goreng), rice (Kampong Fried Rice), roasted chicken, to rojak. Yes, rojak.
As for the dim sum items, recommended are Shanghai Steamed Dumplings ($5.56 – delivery pricing), Pan Fried Chicken Dumpling ($5.56), Golden Sand Bun ($5.67), Lo Mai Kai ($3.85), Har Kow ($5.35) and Lobster Mai ($6.53).
The dim sum items were okay, and I suspect they are better in their wok-fried dishes.
Johore Ye Zhi Mei Handmade Bao
208 Jalan Besar, Singapore 208894
Tel: +65 6294 2210
Opening Hours: 24 Hours
There are many “Amy Yip” style Pau in Singapore. For those unaware, Amy Yip or Ye Zi Mei is a Hong Kong actress popular in the 80s for her voluptuous figure bust size.
These buns are so named to indicate the large emm… size.
While I was initially intimated by the size of the Super Big Bao ($3.50) – like how on earth can I finish this late night, but it was actually good stuff. (Note: handphone placed beside pau above to show the size.)
Fluffy skin, succulent meaty fillings, and flavourful.
Worth noting that the exterior was still soft and not soggy from the juices, and this tasted than other better similar-named buns.
I have yet to try other stuff, but there are Prawn Dumplings, Pork Ribs, Chicken Feet, Glutinous, Char Siew Rice, Prawn Siew Mai, Salted Egg Siew Mai, and Rice Noodles Rolls.
The items are inexpensively priced from $1.50 to $2.50.
91 Bencoolen Street, #01-49 Sunshine Plaza, Singapore 189652
Opening Hours: 10:30am – 8pm (Mon – Thurs, Sun), 10:30am – 9pm (Fri – Sat)
Victor’s Kitchen claims that they serve the “Best Custard Buns in Singapore” is located at Sunshine Plaza, with another outlet at Chinatown Point basement.
The restaurant at Sunshine Plaza is typically packed during peak hours, despite the cramped spaces and less than stellar service.
While their Liu Shao Bao aka Golden Egg Yolk Lava Bun ($4.80 for 3) has earned raving reviews and popularity, I will be frank to say I never really fussed about them.
Yes, their buns were better than the average, flowed lusciously and buttery-oily.
With that said, the other dim sum restaurants have probably upped their standards over the years, and are comparable (if not better).
A basket of dim sum typically cost $3.80 to $5.20 here, and other highlights include Victor’s King Prawn Dumpling, Tasty Queen-Sized Siew Mai, Steamed Carrot Cake with XO Sauce and HK Summer Iced Tea.
Tim Ho Wan
Great World City #01-139, 1 Kim Seng Promenade, Singapore 237994
Tel: +65 6483 2000
Opening Hours: 11am – 9pm (Mon – Fri), 10am – 9pm (Sat, Sun, PH)
Originally from Hong Kong, dim sum specialist Tim Ho Wan (添好運) earned its first Michelin star via Michelin Guide Hong Kong and Macau 2010 for its store in Mongkok, Kowloon.
As part of its innovation, Chefs Mak and Leung together with the Tim Ho Wan culinary team, have been tweaking their existing recipes and refining some of its popular dishes to develop a refreshed and updated menu across all its outlets.
Love your ”Hong You Chao Shou”? Bite into these bouncy and chewy Pork Dumplings in Hot & Spicy Sauce ($6.00 for 4 pieces), filled with a succulent minced pork filling, and taste that refreshing kick of ginger towards the end.
The wonton skin is delicately thin and silky smooth, drizzled with Tim Ho Wan’s red-hot chili oil and a special spicy sauce made with 18 different herbs and spices.
Tiong Bahru Pau & Snack
Jurong East St 424, #01-107, Singapore 600252
Opening Hours: 6am – 2pm (Tues – Sun), Closed Mon
This famous dim sum stall that started in Tiong Bahru has five outlets around Singapore, so you probably have seen it and popped in to get your dim sum fix.
They are most famous for their handmade pau, baked by hand since 1969. The outlet at Jurong East allows customers to sit down and dine, in a coffeeshop-like environment.
Of course, Pau (Steamed Buns) is the menu highlight here. Pack them piping warm for your breakfast or tea, with recommendations being the Char Siu Pau ($1.20), Dou Sha Pau ($0.80), Lian Rong Pau ($0.80), Xiao Ji Rou Pau ($1.20), and Da Rou Pau ($2.00).
They are most famous for their Char Siu Pau ($1.20) with fluffy skin; and sweet, honeyed moist pork char siew fillings.
The menu has most of your morning’s dim sum wish-list, from Siew Mai, Fried Flaky Puffs and Egg Tarts. Prices range from $1.20 to $2. The other interesting item to get it the Phoenix Egg ($1.20) which is an egg wrapped with minced chicken and deep-fried.
Nam Heong Ipoh
313 Orchard Road, #05-01/02/03, 313 @ Somerset, Stall 23, Singapore 238895
Opening Hours: 10am – 9pm (Mon – Sun)
Actor Mark Lee introduced 60-year-old Ipoh F&B chain Nam Heong to Singapore. The outlet located at 313 Somerset’s Food Republic specialises in dim sum, rice and noodle dishes.
Dim Sum items on the menu include Nam Heong Egg Tart ($2.20), Supreme Prawn Mai ($4.80), Chicken Glutinous Rice ($4.50), Nam Heong Chicken Sou ($2.80), Ipoh Kaya Puff ($2), to Salted Egg Custard Bun ($4.10).
Try the famous Nam Heong Egg Tart ($2.50) with moist egg custard and a light tart base that flakes easily.
Or, if you are feeling adventurous, try the homemade assam Chee Cheong Fan ($3.90). It is popular in Malaysia, with a taste akin to kway teow. You can also imagine how the tangy assam gravy will work with CCF – it is a lot spicier than usual.
The Chee Cheong Fan is available in five other flavours, such as mild ginger and chicken curry, or get the traditional Ipoh style one if you feel overwhelmed.
For those familiar with Malaysia’s menu, note that not everything is available here. The prices are also slightly higher than average coffee shop dim sum prices due to its location.
Shi Wei Xian Hong Kong Dim Sum
1015 Geylang East Ave 3, #01-109, Singapore 389730
Opening Hours: 7am – 4pm (Sat – Sun), Closed Mon – Fri
This Dim Sum eatery is opened for only two days a week during the weekends, from 7am to 4pm.
However, do not head over to their old venue at Aljunied Avenue 2, as they have moved to Geylang East Avenue 3.
Dim Sum items still remain affordable, costing between $1.20 for a Char Siew Pau to $4 for a Chicken Feet Steamed Rice.
Some of the steamed selection includes Steamed Dumpling ($3.50), Lotus Leaf Rice ($3.50), Prawn Dumpling ($3.50), Bean Sauce Pork Ribs ($3.50), and Crystal Pau ($3.50).
Also available are Fried Dim Sum of Fried Yam Puff ($3.60 for 3pcs), Salad Prawn Dumplings ($3.60), Fried Yam Puff ($3.60), Fried Sesame Ball ($3.60), Fried Ngoh Hiang Chicken Roll ($3.60) and Mango Banana Fritters ($4.50).
I was curious about its Crab Meat Siew Mai ($3.50). While I couldn’t really find distinguishable pieces of crab within, the dumpling was surprisingly succulent, packed with meat and not too starchy.
Kuai San Dian Xin 块三点心
555 Ang Mo Kio Ave 10, Block 555, Singapore 560555
Opening Hours: 24 Hours
Yes, every set of dim sum here is $1.30.
That makes price sensitive customers and those mathematically-challenged people calculate final cost easily (ie order 10 items and make it $13).
There are many outlets around Singapore, from Ang Mo Kio Ave 10, Bukit Batok East Ave 5, Bedok North Street 2, Woodlands Close, Kang Ching Road (Lakeside), Hougang Street 22 to the latest outlet at Bukit Merah View.
Basic dim sum items range from Har Gow, Siew Mai, Char Siu Bun, Steamed Rice Roll, Steamed Spare Ribs with Black Beans, to Coffee Pao, Seaweed Meat Roll to Beancurd Skin Roll.
While I won’t say all the items I had were extraordinary (for example the Custard Pao fillings were clumpy rather than smooth), they were decent items for its price. Better than say, the average food court items that can be more expensive and generic-tasting.
I would recommend going for the Big Pao at $1.30 each, filled with juicy meaty fillings and a slice of hard-boiled egg.
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* Compiled by Daniel Ang @DanielFoodDiary and Juls H. DFD paid for food reviewed unless otherwise stated.