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Desserts / Snacks in Singapore

Desserts / Snacks in Singapore

From cakes to pastries to ice cream, this list features everything you need to satisfy your sweet tooth!
Wan Ling Yeo
Wan Ling Yeo
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Finally got my hands on this highly-raved egg tart! I love the custard for exuding an amazing eggy aroma without being overly sweet, but I disliked the tart crust for being so fragile and lacking structure that I couldn't hold it without worrying that it'll crumble :( While being buttery, the crust is also sweeter and more cookie-like than TongHeng's and Honolulu's.

So here's my take:
• Cheapest: TongHeng (though they're just few cents apart)
• Best custard: Tai Cheong
• Best crust: Honolulu
• Overall sweetest: TongHeng
• Most value-for-money: TongHeng (if they can cut the sugar level by 30%, it would've been perfect)

Getting a birthday cake for a group but feeling lazy about cake-cutting? Then try these Hokkaido cupcakes from Swee Heng as they come in handy square cups with neatly swirled cream on top, hence leaving no mess behind. What my friends and I love was that the cakes were super fluffy, the portion is just right for one person, and the cream isn't overly sweet. These cupcakes come in 5 flavours - matcha red bean, chocolate caramel, roselle, sweet potato, and yam with purple sweet potato - and are priced at $2.80 each and $10 for 4 pieces.

This shop may not catch your eye at all due to its dim lighting, lack of displays, and unwelcoming vibes. But take the leap of faith to walk through the glass door and you'll be greeted by the friendly granny or grandpa with an array of homemade kuehs in the most unfanciful trays and on the most ordinary-looking tables.

The granny wakes up in the wee hours of the day just to prepare all the kuehs (with the help of her co-workers) in time for her shop opening at 8am. Most of the common kuehs can be found here and I've picked the following: (clockwise starting top left) soon kueh #1 (filled with turnips), chives kueh, soon kueh #2 (filled with bamboo shoots), and yam kueh. They all have the normal-sized versions but I love how the mini ones allow you to sample different flavours without making you too full for tea. The skin is soft and the fillings are flavourful, with my favourite being the yam kueh for having savoury and chunky yam and the least favourite being soon kueh #2 (as I personally prefer turnips to bamboo shoots).

These kueh may not be the cheapest (4 boxes of these kuehs with 5 pieces each cost me around $16), but I'm giving it up to them for the quality and effort put into each kueh. Heritage foods like these that still taste good and made by hand are hard to come by, and I'm glad to savour them before they're gone forever.

Yet another Chinese snack stall at the corner of People's Park Complex, this one seem to be the largest and have the greatest variety of snacks to offer.

Bought the pumpkin bao with red bean filling (top) and spinach bao with chicken and mushroom (bottom), but they were disappointing. Although big in portion, tearing them apart only revealed a thin layer of fillings which were lacking in flavour. The buns, although fluffy and naturally coloured, were so bland that I could still taste the flour. It'll definitely taste better if the bun-to-filling ratio is improved.

Located along the outskirts of People's Park Complex are a bunch of food stalls selling authentic Chinese street food. Take your pick from the extensive range of 包子, 馒头, 煎饼 and 凉菜 with nothing above $3 per item despite their huge portion size.

Being a huge fan of vegetable buns in this country where they're are not as common as their tau sar and char siew friends, I was really overjoyed when I saw these huge-ass fluffy buns filled with vegetable goodness and only costing $1 (those with meat were $1.50)!!! The all-vege bun (top) may be slightly bland, but the shreds of vegetables land a good crunch; in contrast, the pork with long beans (bottom) was more flavourful.

Made on the spot, healthy, filling, and cheap, what else can I complain 💕💕💕

Can't believe that these oh so perfect-looking egg tarts made me buy a box of them off the shelves despite costing ~$2 a piece!! The hundreds of layers in the crust looked promising, and biting into it did not disappoint indeed. The crust was fragrant and flaky, yet not overly crumbly to the point that I cannot hold the tart properly or disintegrate into pieces when I bite. The custard, however, was bland and did not shine through its sturdy armour, hence making this a blemish in an otherwise perfect egg tart.

Would give Tong Heng egg tarts a higher rating than this, and I would also want to try Tai Cheong's one soon!

I still remember how bingsu was an 'in' thing when it first came to Singapore and people would flock Korean cafes just to have these atas ice kachang. While the hype has died down in recent years, I'm glad that there's still a steady stream of customers in these cafes in a bid to escape the heat with this ice-cold dessert.

Nunsongyee is one of my top few favourite bingsu cafes for its serene cafe ambience, fine shaved ice and generous toppings. And injeolmi bingsu is always my first option because it's less sweet (just soybean powder, almonds and mini rice cakes), less jelat (due to the absence of ice cream), more fragrant, and is one the cheaper flavours. However, if not for the hefty price tag, Nunsongyee's black sesame bingsu remains the top place in my heart for its fragrant black sesame 'mountain' topped with a GIANT scoop of red bean YUMS.

It's not often for me to travel east so when I finally did, I just have to buy more of these highly-raved Thailand pies (and because 70% of them are flavours that I really love so I just wanted to try everything 😍).

(left to right, top to bottom)
• Tokyo Banana - smells like it, taste like it. Has a slightly bouncy texture, much like a banana pudding encased in flaky pastry
• Coconut - crunchy coconut shreds in a mildly sweet, gooey coconut paste (McDonald's coconut pie would've been better received if the filling was like this)
• Red bean - just like your regular tau sar piah, but bigger and stickier
• Pumpkin (sugarless) - lacks flavour
• Yam - earthy & yammy, but a dash of coconut milk would probably bring out the flavour more and lighten up the texture
• Black sesame - thick and dense paste, and hence a little dry (but it's saved by the thin pastry). While I appreciate that it's not sweet, a little more sugar would probably give it more moisture and appeal to the general public
• Purple sweet potato (sugarless) - just like pumpkin, it's bland and hence it's crucial for sugarless flavours to get the ingredients when they're in season in order to get the maximum flavour and sweetness
• Matcha - subtle matcha taste yet not too mild, then comes a custardy fragrance at the back of your tongue

Priced at $2 per piece, these Thailand pies are huge and SUPER generous with the fillings. In general, the pies are very mildly sweet (which I love), but it'll still feel cloying if you eat one whole piece at one go. I suggest having different flavours of the pies in halves, accompanied with a cup of tea to balance out the richness of the fillings.

If you LOVE dark chocolate (and I mean really dark like > 75%), then this is definitely the place for you. Go for their signature 80% dark chocolate ice cream I must say, or their single origin series if you're feeling all refined, or even their milk and white chocolate so don't worry if you can't appreciate their darker soul mates.

As a dark chocolate lover (my favourite is 90% in fact), I knew I have to get their signature 80% to go with my waffles, and I paired it with pure vanilla to give an overall balance in taste (a bitter & rich with a sweet & light). The waffles came crispy on the outside, fluffy on the inside, topped with 2 big scoops of indulgence and caramelized almonds (which I hoped can be more, and the sugar-to-almond ratio can be improved). The dark chocolate and vanilla combination worked well, but I personally thought that the dark chocolate could've been more potent as it tasted a little flat, and the latter could be more fragrant.

If you're getting 2 scoops, I would not advise getting 2 strong flavours (e.g. both dark chocolate, or dark chocolate with matcha); rather, complementary flavours such as dark chocolate with vanilla or mint will give you a yummier experience 😊 Also, seating capacity is small so be prepared to wait or just get an ice-cream to-go!

Located along the bustling Sago street and beside the more-famous Tai Chong Kok (大中国饼家), this humble-looking and no-frills pastry shop offers just 6-7 types of Hong Kong pastries in small quantities. I know I did not take a flattering photo, but this just testify how flaky the pastry was 👍 I was impressed by the egg tarts because it's true to what they said about being less sweet, while still having sufficient egginess. The salted bean pastry was passable, though I would've preferred it to be more savoury.

Do give their other pastries a try, especially their signature lotus paste with salted egg yolk pastry! And they're definitely best eaten warm!

[Kueh Appreciation Day 2017]
Look at these BIG and FAT Ang Ku Kuehs that cost only $1 each! These are painstakingly made with an elegant thin coating, which means that the skin-to-filling ratio is 👍👍👍 considering how huge these are. Fillings range from the traditional flavours to modern renditions such as durian, but my boyfriend likes the yam best!

[Kueh Appreciation Day 2017]
It's sad to say that a good, artisanal nonya kueh is hard to come by in this era where the mass-production of food is dominating the human touch, but I'm glad that a few artisans like HarriAnns still persevere in making their kuehs by hand.

And for that, as much as this is a generic comment, all of the items showed here are really good. Just take a bite and you can immediately taste the fragrance from the fresh coconut and the handmade-quality that you cannot get from a machine-made kueh. I would just like to feature their Kueh Dadar - a pandan-flavoured crepe rolled with grated coconut that has been steeped in orange sugar - which was pleasantly sweet and juicy oh my I've never had a kueh dadar that actually spurts out juice when I bite into it. Kudos to HarriAnns!