Going Indian doesn’t need to cost


Annalakshmi (Vegetarian), pay as you wish

Source: @samsonvermisst

Are you bored of eating the same breakfast or brunch every weekend? It is time to change things up a bit and give South Indian breakfasts or lunch a go. With so much variety and stimulation to your palate, this type of cuisine will not let you down. And what do you have to lose if a meal hardly burns a hole in your pocket either? We have made it easy for you and compiled a list of the best (and cheapest) restaurants in Singapore that offer the tastiest South Indian grub.


1. Saravanaa Bhavan (Vegetarian)


Saravanaa Bhavan, Mini Tiffin

Mini tiffin for breakfast. Source: @soldier_gal

Saravanaa Bhavan holds a hallowed name amongst South Indians, offering the tastiest breakfast and lunch dishes, generously topped up with ghee. Right from steamed rice cakes – called idlis – to the lunch meal sets, the quality of the food is exceptional. My personal favourite is the Mini Tiffin ($7.50) which consists of small portions of dosa, idli in sambar, pongal/rava upma and a sweet, kesari.

Saravanaa Bhavan (vegetarian)

Vegetarian meals. Source: @deepsfooddiary

For lunch, opt for their meal sets, that come with a variety of vegetarian fare. With 8 branches around the city, there’s bound to be an outlet near you.

Address: 84 Syed Alwi Road, Singapore 207663 (opposite Mustafa Centre)
Click here for a full list of outlets.
Opening Hours: 9am – 11:30pm (Sun to Thu), 9am – 12am (Fri, Sat, PH)
Telephone: 6297 7755


2. Ananda Bhavan (Vegetarian)


Ananda Bhavan (Vegetarian), dosa, pongal

Onion masala dosa ($4.30) Source

Fresh vegetarian food, cheap and open 24/7- what more do you need? Unlike other similar restaurants, it is partial self-service – you decide what you want, pay, get your queue number and wait for the food to arrive! While the ambience isn’t the most exciting, you generally come here for the cheap food that arrives fast – and not for the surroundings.

The dosa and pongal are particularly excellent.

Address: 219 Selegie Rd, Singapore 188339
Click here for a full list of outlets.
Opening Hours: 7am – 10pm
Telephone: 6297 9522 / 6295 9595


3. Komala’s (Vegetarian)


 Komala’s (Vegetarian), combo meals

Briyani poori meal. Source

A no-frills cheap fast food joint with the usual tasty South Indian fare is the best way to describe this restaurant. One comes here to order, collect and eat tasty and healthy dishes without giving too much thought to the ambience. With a number of branches, it caters to a variety of regulars including the lunchtime crowd. What is really popular are their combo meals (from $6.70), which come with a soft drink – cheap and very filling.

Address: 328-332 Serangoon Road, Singapore 218113
Click here for a full list of outlets.
Opening Hours: 8am – 11pm
Telephone: 6299 4464


4. Murugan Idli Shop


Murugan Idli Shop, Little India

Source: @rakskitchn

Although the name suggests that it serves only idlis – steamed rice pancakes – this is definitely not the case. However, the idlis ($1.75 per piece) are melt-in-the-mouth, accompanied by four chutneys that take the dish to another level. After a long day of shopping or sight-seeing around the Little India area, Murugan Idli Shop will provide you respite with delicious and friendly-to-the-wallet food. A visit is recommended just for their idlis. Top it up with some steaming filter coffee!

Address: 81 Syed Alwi Rd, Singapore 207660
Opening Hours: 9am – 11pm
Telephone: 6298 0858


5. MTR (Vegetarian)


 Mavalli Tiffin Rooms (MTR), Rava Idil, Bisibele Bhath

Rava Idli ($2 to $4) and Bisibele Bhath ($5) Source: @spicycustard

MTR, also known as Mavalli Tiffin Rooms, features cuisine from the state of Karnataka, a state in South India. Although very similar to the cuisine of Tamil Nadu, it has certain specialties such as the Chandrahara ($4) which is a dessert crepe with a milk syrup and rava idli, which features the use of semolina. Make a trip here to try their bisibele bhath (lentil rice), masala dosa and rava idli. For me, the best part is that all dishes are served with a generous amount of ghee (clarified butter), which infinitely adds to the taste of the dish!

Mavalli Tiffin Rooms (MTR), Masala Dosa

Masala dosa. Source: @twostomachs

Address: 438 Serangoon Road, Singapore 218133
Opening Hours: 8:30am – 3pm, 5:30pm – 9:30pm
Telephone: 6296 5800


6. Komala Vilas (Vegetarian)


 Komala Vilas (Vegetarian), PM Lee Hsien Loong and Indian PM Narendra Modi

Dosa with accompaniments. Source: @kaogamasala

Komala Vilas has been an institution since 1947, but it became more famous when PM Lee Hsien Loong took Indian PM Narendra Modi to have dosa in this restaurant in November 2015. If you want to order what they ate, get the Idly Set ($2.20), Vadai ($2.40), Onion Masala Dosai ($3.40) and Masala Dosai ($3).

Komala Vilas (Vegetarian), PM Lee Hsien Loong and Indian PM Narendra Modi


Address: 76-78 Serangoon Road, Singapore 217981
Click here for a full list of outlets.
Opening Hours: 7am – 10:30pm
Telephone: 6293 6980


7. Anjappar (Non-Vegetarian)


Anjappar, Mutton Biryani

Mutton Biriyani. Source: @diary_sg

One of the most popular South Indian non-vegetarian restaurants, Anjappar is synonymous with food heaven. Their briyanis ($7.50 to $15) are the tastiest pots of rice and meat (chicken, mutton prawn) and to be honest it is so filling that you don’t really need to order anything else. Unfortunately, their large portions prove to be a bane, because everything else on their menu is so tempting!

Anjappar Popular Meals, non-vegetarian

Anjappar Popular Meals. Source: @raj84

Another recommendation is to have their non-vegetarian meals – also known as the Anjappar Popular Meals ($12) which come with no less than 10 items. Almost everything is spicy here, but also finger-licking good! Give this a try and you can’t tell me it’s not food for the soul!

Address: 76-78 Race Course Road, Singapore 218575
Click here for a full list of outlets.
Opening Hours: 11am – 10:30pm
Telephone: 62965545


8. Annalakshmi (Vegetarian)


Annalakshmi (Vegetarian), pay as you wish

Source: @samsonvermisst

Have you been to a restaurant that does not state prices for the dishes it serves? Impossible you might say. “Eat what you want, give what you feel” is the underlying philosophy of this restaurant. All the money collected is used for charitable purposes, so your soul can feel good while you stuff your face silly.

Annalakshmi (Vegetarian), pay as you wish Singapore

Source: @louisetimes

Offering great service, tasty North and South Indian vegetarian food and always packed, the restaurant is clearly popular. Food is served in a buffet style so you get to try every single offering on the menu. The restaurant itself is beautiful too!

Address: 104 Amoy Street, Singapore 069924
Click here for a full list of outlets.
Opening Hours: 11am – 3pm (Mon to Sat)
Telephone: 6223 0809


9. Spice Junction


Spice Junction, Malabar Mutton Biriyani

Malabar Mutton Biriyani. Source: @keropokman

Being the only restaurant from the state of Kerala (another state in South India) on the list, one HAS to eat at Spice Junction. It offers a different menu from the other Tamilian restaurants, something many Little India regulars are not aware of.

As a Malayalee – people who are from the state of Kerala – myself, when I do not feel like cooking or miss food from back home, this is where I end up. It is also a place to extend your culinary experience when Kerala celebrates its two major festivals, Onam and Vishu in the months of September and April respectively. It gets crowded but the food it worth it!

Address: 126 Race Course Road, Singapore 218585
Opening Hours: 11.30am – 3.00pm, 6pm – 10.30pm (weekdays) 11:30am – 10:30pm (Sat, Sun, PH)
Telephone: 6341 7980


Food from South India


Indian food is famous for offering variety, taste and flavour. Each of the four states in South India offer something different and if you want to be adventurous and expand your culinary horizons, visit these restaurants. Living in a diverse country such as Singapore clearly provides a number of opportunities to do so. So replace the ubiquitous English breakfast for a plate of idli and dosa!

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