Don’t you just miss the days when life was simple, cartoons were great and food was cheap?
Now that we’ve grown up, life isn’t simple and cartoons have gone to shit. But we can still hope for cheap food. And the good news is, while prices have gone up in the last decade or so, there are some places that are still selling food at prices of the past.
So here’s a list of places that are still offering food below $2.
1. Cendol (Makan Melaka)
Because Singapore’s been experiencing a heat wave recently, we’re all clambering for the nearest air-conditioned shelter. And if that’s not available, a cold drink or dessert will have to do.
At Makan Melaka, they’re serving up a classic Singaporean dessert for less than $2. Their Cendol Melaka ($1.50) is made fresh daily.
You can also get the Cendol Melaka with Glutinous Rice for just $1.80.
Though the original Cendol Melaka is good on its own, other toppings such as corn and red bean are also available.
Address: Blk 1 Changi Village, Singapore 455207
Opening Hours: Wed – Fri & Sun: 8.30am – 10pm, Mon: 9am – 10pm, Sat: 8.30am – 11.30pm, Tue: 8.30am – 10pm, 11pm – 12am
Address: 492 Jurong West Ave 1, #01-70 Singapore 640492
Opening Hours: Daily: 7am – 7pm
2. Tiong Bahru Fried Kway Teow
One of Singapore’s (debatable) most iconic dishes is Char Kway Teow. Waxed sausage slices, clams, beansprouts, and fishcake slices are stir fried with flat rice noodles (kway teow), yellow egg noodles and dark soy sauce.
The result is a dark and sticky sweet plate of kway teow full of flavour and wok hei. And that’s exactly what you’ll get for $2, at Tiong Bahru Fried Kway Teow.
As with most Char Kway Teow stalls, there’s the option of not having clams in your order. Personally, I don’t like clams in my Char Kway Teow.
You can also choose to order your Char Kway Teow with just kway teow and not a mix with yellow egg noodles.
If you’re looking for a simple, cheap, decadent plate of Char Kway Teow, this is it.
Tiong Bahru Fried Kway Teow
Address: 30 Seng Poh Road, #02-11 Tiong Bahru Market, Singapore 168898
Opening Hours: Thu – Tue: 11am – 10.30pm, Wed: Closed
3. Hum Jin Pang
Located in Maxwell Food Centre is a peculiar Hum Chin Peng (deep fried dough fritters) stall.
Aptly named Hum Jin Pang (no confusion here), what’s unique about this stall is that customers get to fry their own hum chin peng, coat it with sugar and pack it.
Crisp on the outside, and soft and fluffy on the inside, these traditional snacks prove that old truly is gold.
While some may argue that this is beyond self-service, please calm yourselves.
This practice is almost 3 decades old and it was started because customers in the past saw how busy the then-owner Li Zao was, and would offer to help him by frying their own hum chin pengs.
Smaller in size than what you might find elsewhere, Hum Jin Pang’s dough fritters come in two varieties – Five Spice Salt and Sweet Red Bean.
At six pieces for $1, these fritters are ridiculously cheap.
Hum Jin Pang
Address: Maxwell Food Centre, 1 Kadayanallur St., Singapore 069184
Opening Hours: Daily, 2.30pm – 8pm
4. Naan With Curry (Pak Kashmiri Delights)
I know of friends who have intense cravings for naan. While I don’t understand it, they’ve mentioned a certain place in Tekka Market, serving up $1 naan.
Enter Pak Kashmiri Delights, this unassuming Indian stall sells a variety of naan and curries. That’s not all, they make all their naan from scratch in the traditional tandoor.
The Plain Naan will set you back $1. Yeap, $1. For a HUGE piece of fluffy naan. For $2, you can get both the Plain naan and the Garlic naan.
Because their naan is baked in the traditional tandoor, each piece is specked with charred bits giving the naan an additional flavour profile.
While the curries will cost more than $2, if you’re willing to burst your budget a little, it’s definitely worth it.
Pak Kashmiri Delights
Address: 665 Buffalo Road, #01-250 Tekka Market, Singapore 210665
Opening Hours: Daily: 7am – 11pm
5. Rickshaw Noodles
Back at Maxwell Food Centre once again, is another stall that’s keeping a traditional dish alive, Zhong Guo Re Shi (Rickshaw Noodles).
Rickshaw noodles date back to the early days of Singapore, when vendors would peddle the noodles on a rickshaw.
While rickshaw noodles aren’t specifically defined, the stall here sells simple comforting noodle soups which are perfect on a cold day (kinda like Chicken Noodle Soup).
If you’d like a soupy option, go for the Yellow Egg Noodle Soup ($1) which comes with chye sim, carrots, dried shrimp and garnished with shallots.
There’s also the Mee Sua ($1) which comes with shitake mushrooms, chicken and fried shallots.
You can also choose from an array of ngoh hiang and fried food available. Quite a throwback to simpler times with simple food and simpler budgets.
Zhong Guo Re Shi (Rickshaw Noodles)
Address: Maxwell Food Centre, 1 Kadayanallur Street, #01-87, Singapore 069184
Opening Hours: Mon – Thu & Sat – Sun: 6.30am – 1.30pm, Fri: Closed
6. Junshin Express
Hidden in the basement of Bedok Mall, is Junshin Express. This halal-certified sushi joint sells sushi for just 50 cents per piece.
Yeap. 50 cents per piece is quite a steal considering that sushi isn’t usually cheap and even if it is, the lowest we’ve seen (till now) is $1.20 per plate.
A budget of $2 will net you 4 pieces of sushi. While it might not be filling, it’s perfect for a snack or if you just feel like eating something to occupy your mouth.
Currently, their only outlet is in the East. Here’s hoping they’ll open an outlet in the West.
Address: 311 New Upper Changi Road, #B2-20 Bedok Mall, Singapore 467360
Opening Hours: Daily: 10am – 10pm
Contact no.: 6440 2893
7. Chicken Rice (820 Hainanese Chicken Rice)
Chicken rice is also one of Singapore’s most iconic dishes. Probably the most iconic.
820 Hainanese Chicken Rice sells their standard chicken rice for just $2. They do have other add-ons such as the braised egg and gizzards.
Where else can you find $2 chicken rice? Do NOT say Ananas.
820 Hainan Chicken Rice
Address: 823A Tampines Street 81, Singapore 521823
Opening Hours: Daily: 9am – 9pm, Closed: Alternate Mondays