We’ve sussed out our favourite ayam penyet spots in Singapore serving the delectable Javanese smashed fried chicken with rice, spicy sambal chilli, tempeh and more.
Nasi Lemak? Check. Chicken Rice? Double check. Nasi Briyani? Came, saw, conquered! So, what’s next on our gastronomic adventure in Singapore? Ayam Penyet, of course! Smashed fried chicken that’s served along with rice, sambal belacan, cucumbers, fried tofu (beancurd) and tempeh (soybean cake), this multi-textured and flavour-packed East Javanese cuisine is certainly one of the local favourites. Specially prepared fried chicken that’s smashed with pestle against mortar for a soft and tender texture, spicy sambal belacan, and all its other goodies are what attract us to these restaurants and stalls for more of this Indonesian deliciousness. Read on and discover our list of top picks in Singapore.
(And if you wish to uncover even more delicious local food to savour, make your way to our round-up of 50 local Singaporean dishes you need to try.)
Ayam Penyet Ria
Ask anyone in Singapore about ayam penyet, and they’ll most likely suggest Ayam Penyet Ria. Pioneering the ayam penyet trend here in Singapore, you can get an authentic ayam penyet dish at this popular eatery as it is made using marinades and spices imported directly from Indonesia. But what makes it a winner is definitely the spicy yet addictive chilli. With a little more extra belacan in the chilli for that oomph taste and kick, you’ll find it hard to not submerge the satiating chicken meat into the sambal!
Ayam Penyet President
With four outlets on our sunny island, this Halal-certified casual dining chain specialises in serving authentic Indonesian cuisine, and it’s a ‘presidential candidate’ indeed for one of Singapore’s best ayam penyets. Crispy fried chicken, fried beancurd and soybean cake, signature chilli paste – tummy-pleasing goodness all in one plate. What’s more? They also provide delivery services via UberEats, Deliveroo and FoodPanda – making it easy for you to satisfy your ayam penyet cravings from the comfort of your home.
Warung Surabaya Ayam Penyet
Tucked away at a corner of Lucky Plaza’s second level, Warung Surabaya Ayam Penyet offers a fried chicken dish that’s truly palatable. Here, it all boils down to the finest details. The ayam penyet’s well-crisp crust hides a bounty of tender, generously-spiced meat that practically begs to be lathered in the earthy, hot sambal. But wait, here comes the best part: your dish will be crusted with lots of crunchy golden batter bits that are fried to perfection – elevating your ayam penyet meal with every munch!
Warung Surabaya Ayam Penyet, #02-063/064, Lucky Plaza, 304 Orchard Road, Singapore 238863, p. 6732 1803.
What better way to give your feet (and wallet) a rest after a long day of retail therapy than sitting down for a sinful plate of ayam penyet? At Lucky Surabaya at Far East Plaza, you can definitely expect a well-marinated chicken with tantalising flavours that your taste buds will appreciate, and a delicious thicker slice of tempeh made from fatter, more moist soybeans.
Lucky Surabaya, #05-26, Far East Plaza, 14 Scotts Road, Singapore 228213.
Nur Indah Kitchen
If you’re a big eater, this one’s for you. Rack up an appetite, as Nur Indah Kitchen is known for dishing out a huge serving of ayam penyet for an affordable price. No pocket-sized chicken cuts, just big chucks of juicy, tender smashed fried chicken for you to delightfully relish. Also, the chicken is accompanied with a big plate of, not just plain white rice, but soft, flavourful rice cooked with chicken stock – it doesn’t get any better than that.
Nur Indah Kitchen, stall 7, Bedok Food Centre, Blk 1 Bedok Road, 469572, p. 9389 4301.
Rayyan’s Waröeng Penyet
With one of its stalls nestled a stone’s throw away from our office, we’ve tried and tested its rendition of ayam penyet dish; and boy, oh boy, we can safely say that it makes a darn good lunch meal that’ll put your tummy on cloud nine. The palate-pleasing dish from Rayyan’s Waröeng Penyet comes with a golden-fried smashed chicken, a bowl of flavoursome soup, veggies on the side, a good amount of sambal belacan and lastly, our favourite green rice (yes, green) topped with a pinch of serunding (spiced grated coconut).
Rayyan’s Waröeng Penyet, two locations at 121 Eating House, Telok Ayer Street & Newton Food Centre, #01-03
Sri Bistari Changi Village Famous Ayam Penyet
We’ve heard nothing but good things about this Ayam Penyet chain. Make your way down to any of its six outlets to devour its tasty, famous ayam penyet dish. What keeps us going back for more is definitely the sambal belacan that perfectly complements the rice and smashed fried chicken. Punchy, a little more dark red than most, roughly ground and dangerously spicy are a few plus points about the chilli that make it uniquely appetising. Psst… remember to have a glass of iced milk tea and a few packets of tissue just in case you get runny nose or teary-eyed as a result of consuming the potent yet moreish sambal.
Sri Bistari Changi Village Famous Ayam Penyet, six locations including Bedok North Ave 2 and Joo Chiat Road.
Warong Penyet Super
Staying in the North of Singapore? Then lucky you, ’cause there’s a modest-looking ayam penyet stall at Chong Pang Food Centre that offers a scrumptious plate of ayam penyet at an affordable price. And if you feel adventurous and would like to deviate away from your usual ayam penyet order, why not give its nasi goreng ayam penyet a try? Instead of having the succulent smashed fried chicken with plain white rice, you can enjoy it with a flavour-packed plate of fried rice – yummy!
Warong Penyet Super, #01-170, Chong Pang Food Centre, Blk 105 Yishun Ring Road, Singapore 760105