8 Well-Loved Desserts in Singapore that Travellers Must Try

8 Well-Loved Desserts in Singapore that Travellers Must Try

Singapore's not called food paradise for nothing. From ice kachang to tau suan, be sure to hunt down these local desserts the next time you're here!

Desserts in Singapore are a melting pot of diverse influences, just like the island’s people. They come together in a colourful smorgasbord of food that is sure to satisfy any sweet tooth! From icy cool dishes to jellies and cakes, here are eight delicious local desserts you’ve got to try when travelling to the sunny island. (And for any locals reading this, are there any on the list that you’ve yet to try?) 

1. Cheng T’ng

singapore desserts

Image credit: Kyle Lam

Served hot or cold, this golden coloured soup typically contains dried longans, white fungus, barley, gingko nuts, and sweet syrup. Furthermore, some vendors may add other yummy toppings like dried persimmon, sweet potato, or lotus seeds. As a hot dessert, cheng tng is a warming and comforting treat — simply satisfying on rainier days! If the weather is too hot, have the dessert icy cold instead — so sweet and cooling!

Where to try this: Ye Lai Xiang Hot and Cold Cheng Tng. Stall #31, Bedok Corner Food Centre, 1 Bedok Road, Singapore 469572 

2. Bubur Pulut Hitam

singapore desserts

Image credit: Jan

This scrumptious local favourite consists of simmering sweet black glutinous rice topped with a whirl of coconut milk. Thus, even though it’s quite a simple recipe, the result is delicious; it’s so easy, you can even make it at home. Pulut hitam is a popular dessert in Malaysia, with variations in other Southeast Asian countries too. In Singapore, you can find it at many dessert stalls; if you’re lucky, it might even be served with a scoop of melting vanilla ice cream! 

Where to try this: Qing Tian Cold & Hot Desserts. #01-60, Redhill Food Centre, 85 Redhill Lane, Singapore 150085

3. Tau Suan

singapore desserts tau suan

Image credit: Lim Ashley

Tau suan is a dessert made with split mung beans and topped with youtiao, or crispy dough fritters. The soup base is boiled with sugar and pandan leaves, then thickened with potato flour to create this tasty hot dish. We prefer tau suan when the beans have some bite to them. And of course, the more youtiao, the merrier. It’s a humble old-school treat!

Where to try this: Tiong Bahru Tau Suan. Tiong Bahru Market & Food Centre, 30 Seng Poh Road, #02-55, Singapore 168898

4. Ah Balling

where to try singapore desserts

Image credit: Alpha

Ah Balling, also called tang yuan, are soft and slightly chewy glutinous rice balls stuffed with mouthwatering ingredients like peanut, red bean, or sesame paste. They’re served in a sweet broth which is often infused with ginger, although peanut soup is also very popular. Ah Balling is a Chinese dessert that was traditionally served during the Winter Solstice and Chinese New Year to symbolise togetherness. Today, you can enjoy this dish all year round! 

Where to try this: 75 Ah Balling Peanut Soup. 505 Beach Road, Golden Mile Food Center #01-75, Singapore 199583

5. Tissue Prata

Image credit: Kai Hendry

Not your average prata, tissue prata is a delicious pyramid of crispy paper-thin prata coated with sugar on its underside. It’s not exactly for the health-conscious as it’s usually glazed with a generous amount of butter that drips to the base and is sometimes topped with whirls of chocolate syrup. So yes, although it’s perhaps one of the yummiest Singapore desserts, the number of calories you might consume in one sitting should probably follow up with a sweaty exercise session! 

Where to try this: RK Eating House. 1 Kensington Park Road, Singapore 557253

6. Chendol (Cendol)

singapore desserts

Image credit: Derrick Loh

This indulgent cold treat follows the same blueprint: Shaved ice soaked in creamy coconut milk, drizzled with gula melaka (palm sugar), and topped with chendol (soft pandan-flavoured jelly), and red bean. Though the dish originates from Singapore’s neighbours, it is still very much a staple sweet on the island. We love how the rich flavours of coconut, palm sugar, and toppings blend perfectly together.

Where to try this: Makan Melaka Cendol. Changi Village. 1 Changi Village Road, 01-2046, Singapore 500001

7. Nonya Kueh

Image credit: Krista

Kueh are a variety of small desserts that come in many different forms, using various ingredients. The eseential ingredients found in kueh include coconut milk, gula melaka, pandan, and tapioca. Our Southeast Asian neighbours will be very familiar with these delectables since they are found all over the region, especially in Malaysia and Indonesia. From the colourful layers of Kueh Lapis to the oozing gula melaka of ondeh ondeh, there are so many irresistible kueh to choose from! 

Where to try this: Bengawan Solo. Various outlets islandwide.

8. Ice Kachang (Ice Kacang)

This list would not be complete without what might be the mother of all Singapore desserts, Ice Kachang. We’re not sure who came up with the idea of red beans, jelly, chendol, and attap chee (palm seed) hidden under a mountain of shaved ice, then soaked in the rainbow and doused with evaporated milk, but we’re glad they did. A hit of Ice Kachang is sublime in the hot and humid weather! At many stalls, you can also add extra toppings like sweet corn, mango, durian or chopped peanuts.

Where to try this: Jin Jin Hot/Cold Dessert. Block 6 Jalan Bukit Merah #01-20 ABC Brickworks Market Food Centre, Singapore 150006

Also Read: 16 Local Foods You Must Try in Singapore

There are lots of other Singapore desserts to savour. For instance, we have to give honourable mention to some of our favourites too which are not on this list, including mango sago pudding, Eurasian sugee cake, and beancurd! With dessert stalls all around the island, why not indulge in a few of the sweet treats you’ve seen here? 

About Authors

Rebecca Mei Dook
Rebecca Mei Dook

Becca is a fan of impromptu travel, world cultures, ocean views and chocolate anything. When she's not travelling, you can find her either roaming the muddy paths of the English countryside or wandering around her favourite neighbourhoods in Singapore. After taking an AncestryDNA test, she now dreams about visiting all the places that make up her ethnicity.


Cassandra Nerva
Cassandra Nerva

Cassandra seeks comfort in warm blankets, period dramas, and all things hazelnut. If she's not getting carried away with a wartime novel or decorating her house with plants & fairy lights, she's uncovering hidden gems around her as she continues to embrace her keen sense of adventure.