Stalls to Steamboats: 5 Food Trends in Singapore

Stalls to Steamboats: 5 Food Trends in Singapore

Written by Hannah Foster

“Chinatown, Singapore” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by Khalzuri


For foodies, 2016 was an extremely exciting year. Not only did street food stalls become the trendiest places to eat, restaurants had to up their game significantly by creating new recipes and offering diners entirely unique experiences. Of course, the first ever Singaporean Michelin Dining Guide was released last year as well, further inspiring chefs around the world.

These trends continued and evolved in 2017, allowing patrons to choose between rainbow street food and fine dining in gastro pubs. In reality, customers have more choice than ever when it comes to food, so what is it that they’re choosing? In Singapore, the answers are surprisingly obvious:


Versatile Veggies

For a few years now, vegetarian and vegan diets have steadily been turning mainstream. This is great news for the environment and the animals of the world, as well as chefs who specialise in greens. Singapore restaurants like Pyxie Moss and Open Door Policy have managed to create robust, diverse menus packed with animal-friendly ingredients such as fermented root vegetables and herb-heavy sauces. To keep up with the growing trend, Odette began offering a six-course vegetarian set menu and is the ultimate proof that vegetables can be just as interesting as meats.


Big Bowls

“Poke Bowl @ The Baron, Castle Hill” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by surtr


Back in 2016, meals served in bowls became so popular that there were even restaurants that dealt solely in cereal. In Singapore, mega rice dishes and Hawaiian poke bowls were the leading bowl-based trends, and this is yet to change in 2017. The only thing that’s changed is these meals are occasionally even more experimental and fancy, as is the case with poke bowl favourites Aloha Poke, Alter Ego and Kinki, as presented on


Multi-Tasking Meals

In Singapore, time stops for no man or meal. This is why multi-purpose dining concepts have gained popularity over the last few months. As points out, multi-tiered steamboats are incredibly popular, as they allow diners to partake in all sorts of dishes at the same time. Occasionally you can even grill, barbeque or steam the food yourself, all at the same time. For the individuals who don’t even have the time to do this, places like Japan Rail Café allow you to purchase lunch and transport tickets at the same time so you never have to run late or hungry.


More Michelin Stars

Following the release of Singapore’s inaugural Michelin Guide, many more fancy food establishments have popped up. Plus, many of them are extremely diverse, whether it be ramen at Tsuta or big British dinners at Kam’s Roast. Thankfully, our very own Michelin-starred restaurants are doing well too, with Hong Kong Soya Sauce Chicken Rice & Noodle partnering with Hawker Chan to evolve.


Super Stalls

These days, food stalls and festivals are an everyday occasion throughout Singapore, and for good reason. Our national Singapore food fest Savour is incredibly popular, so it makes sense that others would want to get in on the action. This seems to have been accomplished via pop-ups, which now come in hundreds of themes from Pokémon to crafting, according to‘s feature. With once-in-a-lifetime dishes and limited-edition merch on offer, these pop-ups attract hundreds of customers.

As 2017 is well on its way to coming to an end, I think it’s safe to say that this has been the most interest foodie year in Singapore. Hopefully, 2018 will be just as great, if not even better.

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