Little India Restaurants
Where and What to Eat in Little India
The sights, sounds, colours and aromas of this ethnic Indian enclave never fail to assail the senses. Wandering around the grocers and provision shops, one can get an idea of the exotic ingredients used in this cuisine – from spices, curry mixes to variations of gourds, lentils and beans. As the focal point of the Indian community, it bustles with Indian restaurants representing various states of the sub-continent.
From the vegetarian thosai (savoury pancake) to the Northern Indian tandoori restaurants, there is no end of tantalizing the palates. One very popular dish to try is the fish head curry served in the Southern Indian restaurants consisting of a red snapper head cooked in a curry with okra or brinjal, and served with rice. Wash this down with a glass of beer or lassi, a yoghurt-based drink. The banana leaf is often used to line individual platters in many Southern Indian restaurants as it is believed that this will impart a special flavor and adds a nice decorative ethnic touch. Biryani dishes are also found here and these consist of basmati rice cooked in a myriad of spices and condiments with chicken, fish or mutton.
All Restaurants in Little India
The most popular type of curry in Little India is Briyani, and perhaps the best place to try it is at Allaudin’s Briyani. For those with a limited knowledge of this (originally) Persian dish, Briyani is basically a plate of herb infused basmati rice, served with a separate rich curry sauce, chunks of mutton or chicken, accompanied by some crème fresh and sometimes a boiled egg. Mix it all together and you have yourself a plate of curry heaven. Allaudin’s Briyani is not actually a proper restaurant, but more of a food stall, located on the second floor of the popular Tekka Centre. For full authenticity and extra messiness, do as the locals do and ditch your spoon and folk, using just your right hand or some Peshwari bread to scoop up your food!
- Opening Hours: 10:00 - 20:00
- Address: #01-232 Tekka Centre, 665 Buffalo Road
Ananda Bhavan Restaurant
A large part of Indian cuisine, particularly in the Hindu-dominated south of the county, is vegetarian based. One of the best places to sample these specialities is Ananda Bhavan Restaurant, the longest running vegetarian restaurant in Singapore which is able to leave even the biggest of meat-lovers leaving full and satisfied. Special set menus are available from a very reasonable S$7 (upwards) and delivery, like many of the restaurants in Little India, is available until late. There are several branches of Ananda Bhavan around the Little India area (and one at the airport!) Find the addresses below.
- Opening Hours: 10:30 – late (varies between branches)
- Address: 221 Selegie Road / 58 Serangoon Road
- Tel: +65 6297 9522
Chomp Chomp Hawker Centre
Also known as the Serangoon Gardens Food Centre, Chomp Chomp is one of the famous hawker centres in Singapore amongst locals. However, due to its location outside the city centre near Bishan, Chomp Chomp isn’t usually included in your average Singapore guidebook. That’s not to say Chomp Chomp doesn’t get busy. Come in the evening to witness the place buzzing, with chefs preparing freshly grilled stingray, barbecued chicken wings, noodle broths and satay right in front of you.
- Opening Hours: 18:00 - 24:00
- Address: 20 Kensington Road Singapore
Cocotte is situated in the lobby of the Wanderlust Hotel. Fronting the restaurant is Head Chef Anthony Yeoh, who once ran a personal chef business. Along with his team, Chef Anthony introduces a casual take on French cuisine, with hearty dishes straight from a French countryside kitchen. Just as how families commune over meals, Cocotte promotes the same interaction between diners with dishes coming in sharing portions.
Cocotte’s cuisine takes inspiration from the hearty, rustic meals that are a trademark of the French countryside. Provenance and seasonality are focal points in guiding the menu and the way we serve. Communal meals and large platters of meat in the middle of the tables are common sights in the dining room.
- Opening Hours: Lunch Mon - Sat 12:00 - 14:30, Sun 12:00 - 15:00,
Dinner Mon - Thu 18:30 - 22:30, Fri - Sat 18:30 - 23:00
(closed on Sunday)
- MRT: Little India
- Address: 2 Dickson Road Singapore 209494
- Tel: +65 6298 1188
- Cuisine: French
Known for both northern and southern Indian cuisine, Gayatri is also noted for its open concept kitchen, where diners can catch chefs in action tossing naans or cooking with the tandoor oven. An excellent wine display stands in the restaurant.
- Address: 122 Race Course Road, #01-01
- Tel: +65 6291 1011
Khansama Tandoori Restaurant
Centrally positioned on Serangoon Road with an easy-to-find corner location and an almost gothic like red and grey colour scheme, Khansama Tandoori Restaurant makes our list for its utterly delicious Tandoor oven-cooked delights. Buffet lunches, which are mostly meat based, start from around S$12, whilst a whole leg of marinated lamb cooked for two hours can be enjoyed if you come with friends (S$99). The smoky infusion that Khansama Tandoori Restaurant produces is second to none, certainly a unique flavour that can only be properly produced by using the huge brick oven, reaching temperatures of over 500F.
- Opening Hours: 11:30 – 22:30
- Address: 166 Serangoon Road
- Tel: +65 6299 0300
A well-recognised Indian vegetarian restaurant chain in Singapore, Komala’s has built a name for traditional and affordably priced fare. Its tasty dishes use mainly lentils, pulses, chickpeas, rice flour, potatoes, onions, chili, coconut and a wide variety of spices. Try the dosai (savoury pancake) plain or with fillings, bhattura (a fluffly kind of pancake, parotta (bread)), idli (white rice and lentil cake) and poori (unleavened bread).
- Opening Hours: Mon - Sun 08:00 - 23:30
- Address: 328-332 Serangoon Road, Singapore 218113
- Tel: +65 6299 4464
It’s not difficult to find a good curry in Little India, but it is tricky to find one as cheap as at Komala Vilas. Serving a purely vegetarian menu, this famous restaurant lays on generous set lunches from as little as S$3 – about the same as what you’d pay for a glass of water in downtown Singapore. Whilst the ground floor at Komala Vilas is all about pre-cooked fast food, if you venture upstairs you’ll find a slightly more formal environment where you can pick and choose from a menu. You may well end up paying double up here – still not exactly be breaking the bank though!
- Opening Hours: 11:30 - 22:30
- Address: 76-78 Serangoon Road
- Tel: +65 6293 6980
Open since 1969 in Little India with another branch at Suntec City, Muthu’s was the first restaurant to serve the fish head curry. Its slick, modern interior now features a central tandoor oven and it has recently introduced a tandoori fish head dish.
- Address: 138 Race Course Road #01-01
- Tel: +65 6392 1722
Putien Restaurant (Heng Hwa)
Those wanting a break from Little India’s often inescapable curry-based cuisine should look no further than Putien Restaurant, one of the few non-Indian eateries that have made our 10 best list. This Chinese restaurant, whilst not on the same level with some of its competition in Chinatown, does serve up excellent crab soup and crispy pork ribs, and they also have a flexible two, four, or six person set lunch menu running throughout the day. Find the swanky Little India branch of Putien Restaurant on Kitchener Road, a short walk south from Farrer Park MRT station.
- Opening Hours: Daily 11:30 - 15:00, 17:30 - 23:00
- Address: 127 Kitchener Road
- Tel: +65 6295 6358
Taste of India
As it has made our list of the top 10 restaurants in Little India, this fancy two-storey venue clearly lives up to its ambitious name. Taste of India delivers exactly that; authentic Indian flavours from across the length and breadth of the country, including Tandoor chicken, Chettinaadu specialities and of course, the neighbourhood’s most famous dish: fish head curry. This is also one of Little India’s more sophisticated affairs, with an abundance of marble pillars, swish chandeliers, bold artwork and statues scattered about the place, making the environment feel more like a gallery then a restaurant.
- Opening Hours: 11:00 - 23:00
- Address: 36 Belilios Lane
- Tel: +65 6341 5158
Tekka Centre is a landmark in the neighbourhood, serving up large dishes of fresh food to visitors and locals only steps away from the MRT at Little India. This bright yellow and orange warehouse was renovated a couple of years ago and has quickly become a hub for those in search of decent food at honest prices. It stands out from the rest of the hawker centres in Singapore, serving predominantly Indian food, including a great number of Halal dishes. Read More...
- Opening Hours: Daily 06:30 - 21:00
- Address: 665 Buffalo & Serangoon Roads, Little India, Singapore
- Tel: +65 6733 2225
The Banana Leaf Apolo
As one of the more well-know restaurants in Little India, at The Banana Leaf Apollo you can expect a more tourist-based clientele, upmarket surroundings and some higher prices to match. However, the quality of the Indian delights served up here speak for themselves, with house specialities such as their fish head curry and Masala chicken all particularly impressing us. The inspiration for the name, Banana Leaf Apollo, will become clear once you receive your food, as many of their dishes are served on banana leaves instead of plates – a famous dining practise in this neighbourhood and across India.
- Opening Hours: Daily 10:30 - 22:30
- Address: 48 Serangoon Road, Little India Arcade #01-32 Singapore 217959
- Tel: +65 9225 3535 (delivery: +65 6241 4141)
The French Stall
Set amongst the gauntlet of curry houses on Serangoon Road is The French Stall, a cute little diner offering traditional and inexpensive French cuisine. The prominent corner location and blue and white colour theme means that The French Stall is one of Little India’s more easily recognisable restaurants. Inside, you won’t be too blown away by the shabby decor or cramped tables, but more the mouth-watering French faire. The impressive menu includes pan fried foie gras, duck breast and orange sauce, lamb shank with seasonal vegetables, as well as a great selection of European desserts.
- Opening Hours: 15:00 - 18:00 (desserts only), 18:00 - 22:00 (dinner)
- Address: 544 Serangoon Road
- Tel: +65 6299 3544