Located at the heart of Katong, Dunman Food Centre is a relatively small, 30-stall hawker centre that may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about the colourful, hipster-ish Peranakan style streets of Katong. Don’t underestimate it though. Built since 1974, Dunman Food Centre boasts multiple renowned stall names that attract loyal customers from all over the island just to have a hearty local hawker meal. This hawker centre has two storeys with limited seating, so be sure to arrive as early as possible especially if you’re intending to visit the more popular stores that tend to close in the late afternoons or sold out. Crowds tend to peak around 11.30am – 1pm on both weekdays and weekends.
Address: 271 Onan Rd, Singapore 424768
Getting there: Take bus 16 or 33, alight at Dunman Rd – Opp Maranatha Hall (82131)
Tau kwa pau, or beancurd cubes, is a local delight that is reminiscent of the good ol’ days for the older generations, but it is nearly unheard of among the youths. A rare find now in Singapore, this fried platter of beancurd is stuffed with chopped yam, fishballs, hard-boiled eggs, and cucumbers and served with teochew braised sauce. If you’re looking for a change from the usual hawker fare, give this dish a try at this stall with over 60 years of history. Fun fact: this dish was created like a golden purse to attract Peranakans in the early days of Katong due to its lucky symbolism!
Unit Number: #01-05
Opening Hours: Tues - Sat: 7am — 4pm | Sun: 7am — 3pm
Closed on Mondays
This famous wanton mee stall is known not for their wanton nor noodles, but their super spicy chilli. Their fiery red chilli sauce is known to pack a punch - if you can’t handle spice well, stir in less chilli so that your taste buds can still savour the umami of the oil-based sauce. Customers have high praises for their QQ (springy) egg noodles and soft, juicy wantons. Coupled with their signature chilli sauce, this simple hawker fare leaves people craving for more, and it comes with no surprise how this humble stall has become one of the most famous go-tos for wanton mee in Singapore.
Unit Number: #02-19
Opening Hours: 9:30am – 7:30pm
Closed on Thursdays
Selling a wide variety of tze char dishes till late, this stall may not have the same islandwide popularity as their neighbours, but insiders know that a trip to Dunman Food Centre with a group of friends or family isn’t complete without their steamed fish. It comes with different flavours such as their signature spicy and umami special sauce, sweet and tart nyonya sauce, and more. Satisfied patrons love the freshness of the fish, and with its variety of flavours, this is the perfect dish catering to all ages. Unit Number: #02-30 Opening Hours: 11am — 11.30pm Closed on Wednesdays
If you’re on Team Dark Soy Sauce when it comes to wanton mee, this stall located a level below its Dunman Road competitor might just be what you’re looking for. Boasting a sweeter profile with the addition of dark soy sauce, the noodles are served with dried-shrimp based chilli, which is more commonly found at wanton mee places around Singapore. The spice here is more manageable than Dunman Road Char Siew Wanton Mee’s, which is probably a better idea if you’re the xiao la kind of person.
Unit Number: #01-04
Opening Hours: 7am — 2.45pm
Closed on Mondays
Ironically, this stall is more popular for their kway chap than duck rice, which is served as a bowl of soup with thin rice sheets and a plate of pig offal, pork belly, fishcakes and other braised ingredients. While pig offal may sound unappetising, you may find yourself developing a palate for it. Thoroughly cleaned then braised, the innards and skin lend a satisfying chewiness and bursts of umami. The thin rice sheets are smooth served in a light soup, which complements the heartiness of the braised innards and meat. They have gained a loyal following of customers, so be prepared for a 30 minutes wait, or more during peak periods.
Unit Number: #01-10
Opening hours: 11am — 7pm (Best to visit early as they usually close before 7pm)
Closed on Fridays
Work starts at 1am for this elderly couple running Rong Ji Chicken Rice & Porridge, and customers’ appreciation for their dedication to the craft shows in snaking queues even during non-peak hours. Customers tend to go for their thick, flavourful porridge, which comes with either chicken or pork and served with a raw egg for extra richness. An add-on of their smooth poached chicken is definitely recommended! If the weather gets unbearably hot, you can also choose to have their classic steamed chicken rice (no roasted chicken here), and maybe even some chicken gizzards if you are feeling adventurous.
Unit Number: #02-13
Opening hours: 6am — 3pm
Closed on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays
A relatively new stall that offers classic Sichuan dishes like la zi ji (spicy chicken with Szechuan peppers) and mapo tofu for those craving some spice. Their menu ranges widely with a few dishes that cater towards local palates like steamed fish head and tze char dishes like sweet and sour fish.
Unit Number: #02-16
Opening Hours: 10am — 11pm
Yes, there are 3 stalls alone in Dunman Food Centre offering steamed fish dishes! This stall has been around for over 20 years since 1999 and is known for their steamed fish dishes such as assam fish head and their signature bean sauce steamed fish head. They also serve other comfort foods such as steamed pork ribs with salted fish and sambal kang kong.
Unit Number: #02-02
Opening Hours: 11am – 11.30pm
Funnily, this stall doesn’t have a name, so customers fondly named it after its unit number, “Stall 28”. This stall offers a variety of Singapore’s best known wok-fried dishes, such as char kway teow, hokkien prawn mee, carrot cake and oyster omelette. They are known for their generous portions and the best part? They are opened till late so you can satisfy your supper cravings any day of the week!
Unit Number: #02-28
Opening Hours: Mon-Fri: 11.30am — 1.30am | Sat-Sun: 10.30am — 1.30am
If you’re looking for a quick snack or something to share with a group of friends, Gina’s Vadai is the stall you definitely want to visit. Colloquially known as Indian doughnuts, these fried snacks are not quite what you’d expect in a doughnut - fluffy, slightly chewy fried batter that comes with savoury ingredients like prawns and ikan bilis (fried anchovies). Vadai is often eaten with green chillies, which is actually a Chinese influence! Try out their signature flavours like cheese, special spicy and even pizza - you will be sure to find something for every taste bud.
Unit Number: #01-06
Opening Hours: 9.30am — 3.30pm
Closed on Mondays and Tuesdays
What makes this rojak stand out from the crowd is the use of charcoal to roast their youtiao (dough fritters), giving them a perfect crisp and lightly charred fragrance. Lau Hong Ser Rojak is a well-known name among locals, and rightfully so under the skillful hands of owner Mr Lim Khai Ngee, who has been making rojak for over 40 years. The crunchy mix of pineapples, turnip, cucumbers and everybody’s favourite youtiao, doused with a sweet rojak sauce makes it both a wonderful appetiser, or a meal companion.
Unit Number: #02-14
Opening Hours: Mon, Thurs, Fri: 4.30pm — 1am
Tues, Sat: 4.30pm — 12am
Closed on Sundays
Here, yellow noodles are served in a clear broth that is anything but bland, packed with deep flavours of pork bone and prawn heads after hours of boiling. This simple bowl of noodles is a warm comforting food for many locals, and you can also get it dry, where noodles, blanched prawns and slices of pork are tossed in a delicious mix of chilli and lard.
Unit Number: #02-12
Opening Hours: 12.30pm — 8pm
Western food is widely loved by Singaporeans, but the affordable, local-style ones always hold a special place in the hearts of those who grew up with them. This stall offers affordable Western food, serving the classic chicken chop that’s succulent and perfectly charred skin, and deep-fried cutlet and fish and chips. Served together with old school crinkle-cut fries and coleslaw, you will be sure to end the meal with a satisfied stomach.
Unit Number: #02-25
Opening Hours: 12pm — 9.30pm
A cold cup of soya bean milk is an essential pairing for hawker fare any time of the day. Milky and lightly sweetened, this stall makes their own soya bean milk from scratch. For those who can’t complete a meal without dessert, you can also get a bowl of beancurd or grass jelly and pair them with traditional dessert toppings such as gingko nuts and attap seed.
Unit Number: #02-15
Opening Hours: 11am — 2am