8 Must-Try Instant Noodles in Southeast Asia

8 Must-Try Instant Noodles in Southeast Asia

Whether it's Indomie or MAMA, these instant noodles found in Southeast Asia will offer you a cheap, quick and delicious fix.

You’ve probably heard of Korea’s infamous tear-inducing Samyang fire noodles or perhaps the widely raved about Ippudo instant ramen from Japan. Invented in Osaka in the 1950s, instant noodles have cemented itself as an insanely popular food around the globe. They are a quick fix for your late-night hunger pangs or when you’re simply too lazy to cook a full meal from scratch. Whether it’s the tasty broth or the perfectly chewy noodles, there’s just something so satisfying about a bowl of piping hot instant noodles.

In Southeast Asia, you can find instant noodles infused with a distinctly local spin. In fact, this region produces some delicious flavours that have sent countries into a ravenous instant noodles craze. Here’s a list of eight instant noodles to try when you’re in Southeast Asia! 

1. MyKuali Penang White Curry Noodles

Image credit: Redmart

First up, we have MyKuali Penang White Curry Noodles from Malaysia. Mimicking the likes of the famous street food, this instant noodles won the hearts (or taste buds) of many with its extremely close replication of the authentic sambal taste. In fact, before it was made available in their countries, fans would stock up bulk packets of noodles when they were holidaying in Malaysia. With its fusion of creamy flavours and hot spices, the white curry noodles will give you a compact taste of Penang’s hawker culture.

2. MAMA Shrimp Creamy Tom Yum Flavour Oriental Style Instant Noodles

Image credit: Wing Yip

Tom yum is one of the most well-known soup bases in traditional Thai cuisine. The MAMA instant noodles offer itself as a cheap substitute for the authentic version. With just the right amount of heat, the sour citrus twang and subtle lemongrass flavour make it a must-try when visiting the country. Next time you find yourself craving for some tom yum, you know what to pick up!  

3. Myojo Lor Mee

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Lor mee (also known as braised noodles) is a commonplace Chinese meal that can be bought from just about every hawker centre in Singapore and Malaysia. Characteristic of the dish is its thick yellow noodles and starchy soup base. Similarly, Myojo’s instant lor mee has the same thickness and tasty sourness in its gravy.

4. Indomie Mi Goreng

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No list of instant noodles will be complete without Indomie Mi Goreng. It took Indonesia by storm in the 80s and its name quickly became synonymous with “instant noodles” in the country. This stir-fry noodles flavour is unique to the region, and its roots hail from the early Straits Chinese settlers. Indomie Mi Goreng’s undeniable popularity definitely warrants it a go the next time you visit Indonesia!

5. Lucky Me! Instant Pancit Pares Spicy Chicken Inasal Flavour

Image credit: Kainan Korner

From the Philippines, this spicy chicken inasal instant noodles makes for a budget replacement of the local roast chicken delicacy. Unlike other grilled chickens, the inasal is packed with fresh flavours from the local Sinamak palm vinegar marinate. The instant noodles version has an identical smoky taste as well as a fragrant zest of lime.

6. Nissin Chilli Crab Flavour Cup Noodles

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This instant noodles is a conflation of Singapore’s signature delicacy into a cup. Even claimed as the national dish by some, the actual chilli crab is famed as an authentic local concoction that combines chilli and tomato to create a delicious mix of sweet and spicy.

7. MAMA Green Curry Flavour Oriental Style Instant Noodles

Image credit: Noodledelight

The green curry instant noodles is another favourite for both locals and tourists in Thailand. Served with thin vermicelli noodles, it captures the essential shrimp punch in its aromatic broth. Fans constantly sing praises of its crisp sweetness and richness that is guaranteed to give you a taste of Thailand!

8. Prima Taste Singapore Laksa La Mian

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Over the years, certain Southeast Asian countries have fought to claim ownership of this extremely popular Peranakan dish. For an instant fix of the light laksa broth, the Prima Taste noodles is a hearty mix of coconut, chilli, and seafood, and can be bought in most supermarkets in Singapore and Malaysia. This brand hyped up a huge fan base after it was awarded the #1 spot of the 2016 edition of The Ramen Rater’s all-time top ten instant noodles. No doubt, the crowned champion is a quick and simple fix to satisfy your laksa craving.

So the next time you’re in Southeast Asia, don’t forget to pick up a packet of instant noodles! Cheap, tasty, and easy to make, what more can you ask for?  

About Author

Stephanie Lauw
Stephanie Lauw

Stephanie is an English literature and film student who has succumbed to the occupational hazard of over-analysing her favourite TV shows. She enjoys theatre and music, and dabbles with both by writing bad plays and experimenting with her band. Her current dream is to island hop the filming locations of all the seasons of Survivor.


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