If that latest K-drama binge has got you craving some spicy kimchi, we’ve got your back with our guide to the best spots for Korean food in Singapore.
The Hallyu wave has swept through our Lion City with top-notch Korean dramas, amazing K-beauty products, best of K-fashion and lip-smacking food. Where do we start with Korean cuisine? From grilled meats and piping hot stews to bibimbap and Korean fried chicken, we’re spoilt for choice. To make your culinary dilemma a little easier, our guide gives you the full lowdown on authentic Korean food in Singapore.
Best Korean food in Singapore
If you have the stomach for two meals, join the queue at Dookki. It offers a 90-minute tteokbokki buffet with your choice of sauce and various toppings. There’s fried food for you to nibble on while you wait for everything to be cooked. Crazy about cheese? Level up your meal by adding the cheese ring. And, if you’re still hungry after your feast, add rice to your leftovers, fry everything up, and voila – your second meal.
Dookki, multiple locations including Suntec City and Jcube
Looking for halal Korean food in Singapore? We know just the place. Mukshidonna, which roughly translates to “have your food, pay, and leave”, is well-known for its tteokbokki budae jigae (rice cake army stew) and signature sauce. The best part? You can customise your stew further by adding ramen noodles to make it a filling meal.
Mukshidonna, #01-30/31, Kinex, 11 Tanjong Katong Road, Singapore 437157
Serving authentic Korean food in Singapore since 2011, this place has classics like kimchi jjigae (kimchi stew), samgyetang (ginseng chicken soup) and spicy tofu stew. Just like any Korean eatery, it offers side dishes that are topped up for free. If you’re ravenous, dig into the BBQ combination. The best thing about it is you don’t have to do any of the cooking! The friendly staff will serve you a heaping plate of fully cooked meat in bite-size portions.
Hanwoori, 76 Serangoon Garden Way, Singapore 555972
After a night of revelry at Keong Saik, you’ll be pleased to know of this non-fast food option for post-beer munchies. Open until 11pm, the rustic restaurant is your best bet for late night Korean nosh. Todamgol serves almost every Korean classic you can think of, including bibimbap, Korean pancake, BBQ dishes and the quintessential banchan (assortment of side dishes). In addition to the standard plates, the restaurant features an extensive menu of rice wines if you’re still up for a nightcap after supper.
Todamgol, #01-01, 31 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore 088454
5. Jangsu Korean BBQ
This cosy and authentic K-BBQ spot is nestled along Circular Road, a stone’s throw away from Clarke Quay MRT station. Expect your usual cuts of meat like pork belly, beef sirloin and BBQ pork shoulder on the menu. Amidst all the grilling action, whet your appetite with cooked dishes like seafood Korean pancakes and kimchi fried rice. Or you can go for the BBQ sets which include a selection of meats, steamed eggs and a choice of tofu, kimchi or soybean soup.
Jangsu Korean BBQ, 7 Circular Road, Singapore 049363
6. Pink Candy
Housed within a food court at Beauty World Centre, this stall is an expert when it comes to kimchi. With 10 years of experience in kimchi-making, there are five versions to try: apple, radish, spring onion, cucumber and the traditional cabbage one. Not only that, but the food is pretty affordable too. Dishes like tteokbokki (spicy rice cakes), kimbap and seafood or kimchi pancakes don’t go above $15. We’d recommend you head down during dinnertime so you can soak in the picturesque rooftop views at the alfresco area.
Pink Candy, #04-60, Beauty World Centre, 144 Upper Bukit Timah Road, Singapore 588177
7. Wang Dae Bak
Unlike most Korean BBQ places that use gas grills, Wang Dae Bak elevates itself by offering charcoal grills, imparting a characteristically smoky taste to its BBQ offerings. For those who prefer meats cooked on an iron grill, you can pop on over to its sister restaurant Wang Dae Bak Pocha BBQ. Apart from melt-in-your-mouth meat cuts including boneless prime rib and pork belly, the restaurant offers a full range of homely Korean dishes like spicy seafood tofu soup and the crowd-pleasing kimchi pancake.
Wang Dae Bak, multiple locations including Amoy Street and Cross Street
8. Big Mama
You definitely want to make a booking here. Why? The restaurant’s eponymous Korean boss has made a name for herself among Koreans with her homely cuisine, attracting crazy lunchtime crowds. You’ll find no MSG in the dishes as well, so that’s an added bonus. Oh, and it’s worth visiting in a group as Big Mama offers large sharing dishes like dak-galbi (spicy stir-fried chicken) and samgyetang (ginseng chicken soup). If you’re all by your lonesome, don’t worry. Just tuck into a hearty portion of bibimbap served in a hot stone bowl.
Big Mama, 2 Kim Tian Road, Singapore 169244
Hankering for a warm bowl of spicy soup? Masizzim has got you covered with its pork and beef stews that are sure to set fire to your tastebuds. Scared of a little spice? Opt for the soy-based broth, which has a delicate sweetness. That’s not all. Don’t miss out on snacks like honey mustard cheese egg roll and tomato cheese kimchi pancake.
Masizzim, #B3-02, 313 Somerset, 313 Orchard Road, Singapore 238895
10. Chir Chir
The main star of this Korean fried chicken joint has to be Nest Snow. This dish is served in a pool of creamy, rich sauce, with chicken tenders piled over a sweet, coleslaw-like salad. The oddest addition is a dollop of whipped cream on top, but we salute its audacity! Of course, if all that is too edgy for your traditionalist sensibilities, you can always opt for less adventurous options like garlic chicken tenders.
Chir Chir, multiple locations including 313@Somerset and Bugis Junction.
11. Super Star K
Like Wang Dae Bak, Super Star K swaps the usual gas grill for a charcoal one. You’ll have a full selection of your favourite meats, including bulgogi pork and beef brisket. All that is complemented by a tantalising selection of non-BBQ dishes like soybean paste stew and a massive serving of seafood pancake.
Super Star K, 75 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore 088496
12. 8 Korean BBQ
More upscale than most, this Korean BBQ restaurant takes its name from its signature 8 Colour Set. It consists of thick, long strips of Mangalitsa pork belly flavoured in eight ways: Original, wine, curry, garlic, miso, herb, kalbi and red pepper paste. But like any all-rounded resto, that’s not the only cut of meat worth having here. There are also top-notch beef and seafood selections like Japanese wagyu, Atlantic salmon and king prawn. Plus, let’s not forget the crispy pancakes, truffle steamed egg and a variety of stews.
8 Korean BBQ, multiple locations including Clarke Quay and Orchard Road
13. Kim Dae Mun Korean Food
Thanks to Kim Dae Mun Korean Food, we can satisfy our K-drama induced cravings without breaking the bank. But this isn’t a showy eatery with fancy creations and pretentious-sounding menu items. Expect only simple, authentic Korean dishes like kimchi soup, bean paste soup, grilled pork and bibimbap.
Kim Dae Mun Korean Food, #01-03D, Concorde Shopping Mall, 100 Orchard Road, Singapore 238840
14. The Boneless Kitchen
Don’t despair if you’re a vegetarian with a weakness for Korean food. At this K-joint, all dishes are 100% vegetarian and vegan. That means dishes are made entirely from scratch, including kimchi and gochujang (so you won’t find garlic or fish sauce in there!). On the menu, you’ll see familiar favourites like spicy kimchi stew and bibimbap, only with plant-based proteins.
The Boneless Kitchen, #01-31, The Commerze@Irving, 1 Irving Place, Singapore 369546
15. Chicken Up
The Korean joint is known and loved for its piping hot, freshly-made plates of fried chicken, which are marinated for 12 hours and fried only to order. You’ve got several flavours to choose from including sweet and spicy wings (yangnyum) and our fave, the soya-flavoured (ganjang) wings. If you happen to visit with a group, make sure you order the watermelon soju punchbowl. You’ll be served half a watermelon with its insides slushed up and mixed with a whole bottle of soju.
Chicken Up, 48 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore 088469
Happy feasting on authentic Korean food in Singapore!
[This article was originally published in 2016 and updated in 2023 by Sufyan Saad.]