Often viewed as a delicacy, turtle soup is said to help lower blood pressure, improve kidney function and boost virility. In fact, it is a dish often served to Chinese emperors to boost their libido! If you’re cringing at the thought of eating turtle meat, rest assured that endangered or wild turtles are not used at all. The meat comes from farms and they are prepared exclusively for consumption. While not commonly found, the dish has been around for several decades. Today, it is a dying tradition, with just a handful of stalls left serving the dish!
Ser Seng Herbs has its origins as a push cart stall in the 1940s, and the time-tested recipe includes over 20 different types of herbs, simmered for more than 12 hours daily! Every bowl comes with a generous amount of protein-packed turtle meat, collagen-filled turtle skin, flavourful turtle eggs, and meticulously cooked traditional broth. If you’re up for a gastro-adventure, there are also soups made exclusively from turtles’ internal and reproductive organs! Apart from a variation of turtle soups, the family-run restaurant also cooks other nourishing herbal soups, such as Pepper Tripe Soup, Steamed Black Chicken and more.
Address: 39 Tai Thong Cres, Singapore 347863
Opening Hours: 11 AM–8 PM Tues to Sun. Closed on Mon
Not to be confused with Ser Seng Herbs, Tan Ser Seng is run by another branch of the family and the first to cook turtle soup in a claypot. Rich and hearty, this bowl of superior soup is simmered for hours with an abundance of quality herbs and ingredients, and it’s packed full of collagen and health benefits. The turtle meat is succulent and tender, while the jelly pieces are smooth, firm and springy. Apart from their signature Claypot Turtle Soup, Tan Ser Seng also offers herbal soups such as the Cordyceps White Chicken and Ginseng Black Chicken. Best paired with a bowl of yam rice!
Address: 29 Lor Bachok, Singapore 387791
Opening Hours: 11 AM–8:30 PM daily
Home to many drool-worthy eats, Very Lucky Turtle Soup is located on the second floor of Berseh Food Centre. The stall has a history of over 40 years, helmed by Uncle Chu who specialises in herbal stews that are chock full of Chinese herbs. With an XO drizzle, this one of the best turtle soups in Singapore with a sweet and savoury taste that just beckons you to have more mouthfuls. Their turtle meat is cooked to perfection as well. It’s tender, but it remains firm and doesn’t disintegrate into the soup. Uncle Chu also serves Crocodile Tail Stew, which is touted to help combat asthma and its related symptoms!
Address: 166 Jln Berseh, Singapore 208877
Opening Hours: 11 AM–8:30 PM Thurs to Tues. Closed on Wed
Turtle soup is one of those things that are getting increasingly hard to find in Singapore, but one place where you can still get it is Kok Kee Turtle Soup. Touted for their medicinal properties, the meat is braised until tender with herbs and spices and the soup is rich with collagen. The stall also sells black chicken and ginseng chicken soups, which is delightful with a bowl of yam rice.
Address: 22 Lor 7 Toa Payoh, #01-39, Singapore 310022
Opening Hours: 9:30 AM–2 PM Mon to Sat. Closed on Sun
Did you know that a serving of turtle soup contains 154kcal, 0% fat, and is low in cholesterol? Turtle skin is also high in collagen, which is rumoured to be good for skin, bones and joints when eaten. Past patrons of Tai Seng Herbal Turtle Soup includes superstars whose photos you can see proudly displayed on their wall. The portion that they serve is adequate for two, and it has a variety of turtle parts in it. The soup is rich with a light herbal taste, and it leaves a pleasant sticky feeling on the lips. While the meat could be softer and the soup thicker and richer, it is still a very comforting bowl of turtle soup!
Address: 118 Hougang Ave 1, #01-186, Singapore 530118
Opening Hours: 9:30 AM–3 PM Wed to Sun. Closed Mon & Tues
There used to be many turtle soups in the Jalan Besar area, but today only two stalls remain. One of them is Fu He, who is one of the oldest tenants here and has been around for over 30 years. It has two stalls, one which is the claypot rice and tze char section, while the other does herbal soups. They are best known for their exotic meat such as the Nourishing Turtle Soup which is said to detox blood and boost virility, as well as the XO Crocodile Soup. If you’re feeling less adventurous, there’s also classics such as the Shi Quan Black Chicken or Lotus Root with Pork Ribs.
Address: 166 Jln Besar, #02-40/47, Singapore 208877
Opening Hours: 11 AM–8 PM Sat to Thurs. Closed on Fri
Another spot for turtle soup is at Havelock Road Food Centre. The turtle meat at this stall is tender while the soup is light-bodied, savoury and sweet with some light herbal notes. It is perfect to pair together with their fluffy yam rice and garlicky chilli sauce!
Address: 22A Havelock Road, #01-04, Singapore 161022
Opening Hours: 9 am–3 pm Wed to Sat. Closed Sun to Tues
Helmed by a husband and wife duo, Kent Thong Turtle Soup has a history of over 30 years. Using only farm-bred turtles which have a lower calorie content, higher protein and less fat, the mildly herbal turtle soup is light and sweet with chunky meat and soft gelatinous skin that goes well with a bowl of rice. You can also top up to have turtle eggs added into your soup! Apart from turtle soup, the stall also offers black chicken soup and mutton soup.
Address: 335 Smith St, #02-188, Singapore 050335
Opening Hours: 10 AM–7 PM Tues to Sun. Closed on Mon
Tucked away in a corner of Sin Huat Eating House in Geylang is Kin Turtle Soup. Served in a piping hot claypot, the soup here is refillable, free of charge! Delightfully light and clean yet flavourful, this would appeal to those who do not fancy overly thick and rich flavours. Filled with turtle meat and turtle skin that goes very well with their tangy chilli, this is one meal that will leave you satisfied!
Address: 659 Geylang Rd, Singapore 389589
Opening Hours: 9 AM–4 PM Thurs to Tues. Closed on Wed