The heat in Singapore isn’t just a call for air conditioning but also a call of some of the delectable traditional local dessert treats.

There are a growing number of dessert shops, with many keeping their doors open well into the night.

From the classic, icy refreshment of Mango Pomelo, Chendol, Almond Paste to the comforting warmth of Tang Yuan and innovative dessert creations, Singapore’s dessert scene is flourishing like never before.

DFD will takes you on a refreshing journey through some of the 12 best local desserts in Singapore, perfect for cooling down and savouring the sweetness:

Yat Ka Yan Dessert – Bugis
9 Tan Quee Lan Street, #01-03, Singapore 188098
Opening Hours: 12pm – 12am (Mon, Wed – Sun), Closed Tues

Yat Ka Yan With Outlets At Fortune Centre & Tan Quee Lan
Yat Ka Yan, initially celebrated for its local desserts at the Fortune Centre, has blossomed with a new outlet.

Since its humble beginnings in early 2020, the dessert shop has expanded its reach, now boasting additional space at its original location and a new outlet on Tan Quee Lan Street, near Bugis Junction.

Despite the abundance of dessert spots in the area, Yat Ka Yan sets itself apart with its commitment to treating patrons like family and providing a range of heartwarming traditional desserts.

The menu at Yat Ka Yan’s new location offers a variety of treats, such as the best-selling Avocado Sago, Yam Paste, Sesame Paste to Chendol and Yammy Chendol – made with quality ingredients like freshly squeezed coconut, self-cooked red beans, and carefully selected gula melaka.

Read more at: Yat Ka Yan Dessert (Tan Quee Lan Street)

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

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, Milk Steamed Egg with Red Bean, Black Glutinous Rice with Vanilla Ice Cream, Durian Sago Desserts, Hashima Red Date Soup, and White Fungus Papaya with Almond.

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.

Read more at: Ah Chew Desserts (Liang Seah Street)

Hup Ka Foon 合家歡
18 Sago Street, Singapore 059017
Opening Hours: 12:30pm – 10pm (Tues – Sun), Closed Mon

Hidden Chinatown Local Dessert Shop Gem With Delicious Chendol
I chanced upon the family-owned Hup Ka Foon 合家歡 at Sago Street, just a short walk away from Chinatown MRT station and the iconic Buddha Tooth Relic Temple.

The most popular dessert is the Cendol, something that most Singaporeans, if not all, would know very well.

The Cantonese-style cendol has a generous amount of red bean and the green pandan jelly laid all around the ice.

Drizzled evenly with coconut milk and gula melaka, each scoop should get an even proportion of all the ingredients.

Although this is primarily a dessert place, there are a few dim sum items in the kitchen. The Yam Cake and Chee Cheong Fan are fluffy and delicious enough that you might consider switching it up for a bit.

Read more at: Hup Ka Foon 合家歡 (Sago Street)

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

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

The Ginger Milk Pudding 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 originated from Shunde in Foshan China. You can also choose other toppings such as red bean, mango, lotus seeds, walnut, almond, and papaya.

Read more at: Jin Yu Man Tang Dessert Shop (East Coast)

Tian Wang 甜旺
50 Keong Saik Road, Singapore 089154
Opening Hours: 5pm – 2am (Mon – Fri), 3pm – 2am (Sat – Sun)

Mahjong Themed Local Dessert Cafe That Opens Till 2AM Weekends At Keong Saik
Tian Wang Desserts, co-owned by veteran actor Li Nanxing, debuts anew at 50 Keong Saik Road (they moved from 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.

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.

They are popular for dessert treats like creamy Durian Mousse, flavourful Chendol, refreshing Mango Pomelo Sago and Berry Blast.

Go for the Yam Paste with Pumpkin and Ginkgo Nut 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.

Read more at: Tian Wang 甜旺 (Keong Saik)

Siyuan Desserts 思源糖水铺
111D King George’s Avenue, Singapore 208559
Opening Hours: 12:30pm – 9:30pm (Tues – Sun), Closed Mon

New Jalan Besar Dessert Shop With Oriental Vibes
The local dessert scene in Singapore is witnessing a modest revival with the introduction of several new establishments, including Siyuan Desserts 思源糖水铺 at Jalan Besar.

Siyuan is aptly located next to a cheongsam shop, enhancing its oriental ambiance.

Siyuan Desserts prides itself on a diverse menu that includes warm desserts like Almond Cream, Sesame Paste, Walnut Cream, Orh Nee, Cheng Teng with Peach Gum, Lotus Seed Suan, and Pulut Hitam.

They also offer cold treats such as Chendol and Mango Sago, with prices ranging from $4 to $5.50. During a visit, the recommendation to try the Yuan Yang 2-in-1 bowl led to a preference for the smooth, balanced, but not overly sweet Almond Cream over the Sesame Paste.

Despite areas for texture refinement, the overall experience at Siyuan Desserts encapsulates warmth and nostalgia, mirroring the shop’s distinct oriental atmosphere.

Read more at: Siyuan Desserts 思源糖水铺 (King George’s Avenue)

Wan Mei 碗美
Odeon Katong #01-14, 11 East Coast Road, Singapore 428722
Opening Hours: 12pm – 10:30pm (Wed – Mon), Closed Tues

Traditional Dessert Store With Snow Ice And Orh Nee At Katong
Wan Mei 碗美 is a play of the words 完美 which means “perfect”, hoping that each bowl of dessert is perfect too.

Their selection of Cold desserts is more interesting, such as Red Tea Jelly Ice Dessert, Yuzu or Lychee Ice Dessert, and their signature Wan Mei Snow Ice Set.

The highlight is definitely their Wan Mei Snow Ice Set that comes in 8 different flavours with 1 complimentary sauce and 3 toppings.

Available in Chocolate, Hokkaido Milk, Mango, Matcha, Milo Dino, Peanut, Rockmelon and Strawberry, the snow ice is thinly shaved in the form of sheets, like the Taiwanese Chua Bing dessert.

Read more at: Wan Mei 碗美 (East Coast)

Tong Shui Desserts
People’s Park Centre #02-58, 101 Upper Cross Street, Singapore 058357
Opening Hours: 11am – 8:30pm (Mon – Sun)

Extensive Range Of Desserts At People’s Park Centre
Tong Shui Desserts at People’s Park Centre is an old-school spot that seems to capture the essence of traditional dessert charm, nestled in the bustling area of Chinatown.

Known for its wide selection of both hot and cold desserts, this establishment has garnered a following among those who have a soft spot for Cantonese-style treats.

With its straightforward and casual vibe, it offers a plethora of options that are both comforting and surprisingly intricate.

Particularly recommended are their Chendol ($3.50), with green jelly noodles, coconut milk, and gula melaka offering a balance of sweetness and richness.

The Tau Suan maintains a comforting consistency with a perfect balance of sweetness, enhanced by the soft yet slightly firm texture of the mung beans.

Dessert Bowl 一碗甜品
80A Serangoon Garden Way, Singapore 555976
Opening Hours: 3pm – 5:15pm, 6:15pm – 10:30pm (Tues – Fri),
2pm – 5:15pm, 6:15pm – 11:30pm (Sat – Sun), Closed Mon

Famous For Creamy Durian Mousse and Mango Pomelo Sago
Dessert Bowl 一碗甜品, nestled in the heart of Serangoon Garden Way, is perched above a row of less inviting establishments.

It unveils a surprisingly vibrant and youthful vibe once you step inside. Its ambiance, characterised by vintage furnishings and a collection of miniature food stall displays.

This is possibly inspired by dessert cafes in Hong Kong, adding that charm that sets it apart from the typical dessert cafe.

The Durian Mousse ($6.30, $7.30), particularly recommended in a “double shot” for the ultimate durian experience, emerges as a crowd favourite.

It is creamy blend, served icy cold, with generous portions of durian flesh, elevating it to a must-try status for durian aficionados.

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

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.

Ji De Chi Dessert 記得吃甜品

Dessert Chain In Many Parts Of Singapore
Ji De Chi Dessert is celebrated for its diverse range of Asian and particularly Chinese-inspired sweet treats.

Customers can expect to pay between $5 to $11 for desserts that range from classic options to more unique creations.

Mei Heong Yuen Desserts 味香园甜品
63-67 Temple Street, Singapore 058611
Opening Hours: 12pm – 9:30pm (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.

For a more cooling treat, customers go for the Taiwan Snow Ice 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: 1:30pm – 11pm (Mon – Sun)

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, Mango Sago, Black Sesame Paste, and Peach Gum with Milk.

I was recommended the White Chendol, also available in Red Bean and Durian versions. 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.

Reas more at: Chow Zan Dessert (North Bridge Road)

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