Shoyu or miso? Char siew or onsen egg? Tonkotsu or chicken broth? The possibilities are endless with this list of ramen joints.
You don’t have to be Japanese to regard ramen as your comfort food. It’s arguably become a staple in our diets, and the preferences posed to patrons – thanks to the number of ramen joints popping up on our isle – are plenty. The fattiness of your char siew, the ooze factor of your onsen egg, the thickness and texture of your noodle, even the base and colour of your broth… there’s something for everyone. That’s why we’ve put together our list of the best ramen restaurants in Singapore. Just remember – slurp it like you mean it!
Best ramen joints in Singapore
1. Ramen Keisuke Tonkotsu King
Long queues are usually a giveaway indication of how good the ramen is, and this joint does a mean bowl of it. Naturally, tonkotsu ramen is its specialty. The one here is a treasure trove of addictive, umami flavours. Not to mention the decadent fattiness of the sizeable pieces of char siew and the free flow of hard-boiled eggs that you can dip into your broth. We always have three (at least).
Ramen Keisuke Tonkotsu King, multiple locations including Tanjong Pagar and Paya Lebar
2. Menya Musashi
Naming its franchise after a Bushido-honouring samurai, you can bet Menya Musashi cooks up its signature ramen with just as much dedication. It serves the dish in red (spicy), black (garlic) and white broths, the last being a tonkotsu broth enriched with pork bones. You can even ask for aburi duck slices instead of the usual char siew meat option.
Menya Musashi, multiple locations including Takashimaya and Westgate
Tsuta in Tokyo is the first Japanese ramen eatery to join the ranks among the Michelin-starred restaurants in the world. So why does any of this matter? Because it has set up shop in Singapore, proof that the ramen craze here is far from a fluke. You’ll find three types of soup bases on the menu: the shoyu (featuring a decadent and unconventional black truffle sauce), the shio (a chicken-seafood blend with fragrant hints of red wine and rosemary), and the miso (the traditional recipe).
Tsuta, multiple locations including Jewel Changi Airport and 313@Somerset
Satisfy your craving by popping over to Afuri at Funan. This joint is a massive hit with ramen fans, all thanks to its infusion of yuzu in the chicken broth. The citrus taste is a refreshing contrast to the typically rich ramen broth and goes perfectly well with chewy noodles and chargrilled pork slices. If you prefer something light, go for the yuzu shio ramen. Health-conscious folks will be glad to know that no artificial ingredients are used here. So slurp away, tomodachi!
Afuri, #B1-29, Funan, 107 North Bridge Road, Singapore 179105
5. Ikkousha Hakata Ramen
Another candidate for best Hakata-style ramen from Fukuoka, this broth is derived from pork bones boiled over several hours. That gives it a milky, slightly-fatty consistency that’s sinful but worth the gym sesh after. We love how you can choose the preferred texture of your noodles and the level of richness and oiliness of the soup.
Ikkousha Hakata Ramen, multiple locations including Tanjong Pagar Plaza and Chijmes
6. Marutama Ramen
You can always spot snaking queues outside this modest joint. Unlike other restaurants that use pork as the base for their broth, Marutama’s soup is extracted from chicken. This results in a lighter, milder bowl that won’t make you feel too full after you’re done slurping all the goodness. It’s no wonder patrons always ask for an extra portion of noodles – or, as you should shout to the chef, “Kaedama, onegai shimasu! (Another serving of noodles, please!)”.
Marutama Ramen, multiple locations including Clarke Quay and Kallang
7. Ramen Keisuke Tori King
The sister restaurant of Ramen Keisuke Tonkotsu King – and just as popular – Tori King is a counterpart that prepares its broth using chicken instead of pork. The biggest draw for us is how this place serves an entire chicken leg instead of cut slices. And don’t worry about using your hands. The meat is so tender and soft, it practically slides off the bone with a swipe of your chopsticks.
Ramen Keisuke Tori King, #03-15, 100 AM, 100 Tras Street, Singapore 079027
8. Ippudo Singapore
As tradition goes, Ippudo was conceptualised by Shigemi Kawahara to rejuvenate the Kyushu ramen scene in the ’80s. And now, not only has Kawahara-san revived said scene back home, but he’s also brought the craze to Singapore. For a taste of history, we opt for the shiromaru motoaji – a creamy tonkotsu broth served with Hakata-style springy noodles and pork belly chashu.
Ippudo Singapore, multiple locations including Sengkang Grand Mall and UE Square
9. Tonkotsu Kazan Ramen
“There she blows!” That’s something patrons gleefully exclaim as they watch this ‘volcano ramen’ erupt in front of their eyes. Theatrically presented, the dish is prepared in a pre-heated stone bowl (that’s not the best part), before the calcium- and collagen-infused soup is poured and a lid is placed on top. Once steam starts gushing out, you’ll know it’s ready for consumption. You might want to use a spoon for drinking the soup, though – the stone bowl will be very hot.
Tonkotsu Kazan Ramen, multiple locations including Century Square and Funan
10. Sanpoutei Ramen
Hailing from Niigata, the eatery joins the growing ramen competition in Singapore. It’s all about Niigata’s signature shoyu (soy sauce) ramen here. The clear soup broth is stewed for six hours with a mixture of vegetables, whole chicken, and specially imported dried sardines from Japan. The soft, springy noodles are also freshly churned in-house, using a state-of-the-art machine to achieve strict quality control.
Sanpoutei Ramen, multiple locations including Holland Village and Shaw House
Although you can get both Kyushu- and Hokkaido-style ramen here, the bowl worth guzzling down is Tampopo’s deluxe black pig shabu ramen. Thin, stringy, fatty and packed with intense flavour, the addition of kurobuta really accentuates this creamy broth. Please toss in an onsen egg while you’re at it.
Tampopo, multiple locations including Takashiyama and Oasis Terraces
Go on and enjoy that hearty bowl at the best ramen restaurants in Singapore!
[This article was originally published in 2016 and updated in 2023 by Sufyan Saad.]