Singapore Street Noodles

Singapore Street Noodles. Spicy, full of chicken, pork and shrimp and naturally gluten-free. - BoulderLocavore.com

I had the pleasure of living in Singapore as well as traveling there many times on business.  I fell head over heels in love with the food.  When I was living there, Singapore was divided equally between Chinese, Indian and Malaysian cultures all of which blended into a rich and exciting food scene. Despite all of the noodle dishes I grew to love, Singapore Street Noodles was NOT one of them!

Singapore Street Noodles. Spicy, full of chicken, pork and shrimp and naturally gluten-free. - BoulderLocavore.com

There were many noodle dishes that became my regulars.  We’d have them for breakfast in spicy broths, as well as lunch or at the local hawker centers (food courts) for dinner where I’d go nightly with my work colleagues.  Before I returned to the U.S., Singaporean and American friends would ask me what food I was craving most from home.  Honestly there weren’t any since there were a number of larger American chains in Singapore.  What I would miss greatly was the local ethnic cuisine, much of which was not available outside Singapore.

The reason I had not become smitten with Singapore Street Noodles is that it is not a Singaporean recipe! It makes them no less delicious but places them in the ranks of foods like French Fries which originate in Belgium, not France.

Singapore Street Noodles (vermicelli or rice stick noodles, gluten-free) - BoulderLocavore.com

I traveled down several rabbit holes looking for the basis of what is known as Singapore Street Noodles, and my conclusion is that it’s a dish originating in Hong Kong.  Though similar to two particular true Singaporean noodle recipes, this recipe has taken on characteristics of its own.  For instance, the addition of the curry.  I read a very long conversation thread online started by someone wishing to have traditional Singaporean Street Noodles on an upcoming trip to Singapore.  The locals were chiming in about the noodle dish and how they never serve such a dish with curry in it.

Singapore Street Noodles. Spicy, full of chicken, pork and shrimp and naturally gluten-free. - BoulderLocavore.com

I think, as with many favorite foods, versions of Singapore Street Noodles have transformed over time. Some versions have shrimp and chicken, some shrimp and pork; some only one of those meats. Some have curry. Some are spicy.  They all use rice noodles (which are naturally gluten-free) and stir fry as the means to combine the flavors in the dish.

Singapore Street Noodles. Spicy, full of chicken, pork and shrimp and naturally gluten-free. - BoulderLocavore.com

I too have created my own version, staying true to the basics of what we know as Singapore Street Noodles in the U.S., adding some of what I love about similar noodle recipes from Singapore. It’s a spicy combination of chicken, lean pork, shrimp with a bit bacon for a flavor similar to Chinese barbecue pork. There are sultry spices and some crunch too.  The recipe makes a very large batch however vermicelli rice noodles tend to be less filling allowing the diner to eat more to make a meal!  What a delicious fate.

Singapore Street Noodles. Spicy, full of chicken, pork and shrimp and naturally gluten-free. - BoulderLocavore.com

One quick tip about stir fry cooking: have all of your ingredients prepared beforehand and at the ready.  It’s a fast cooking process allowing everything to retain a great texture, color and flavor.  There is no time however to prepare anything during the cooking time.


This Singapore Street Noodle recipe is a contribution to Food Fanatic in my role as as the Naturally Gluten-Free Fanatic.

Comments

  1. says

    Your recipes are always SO incredible. My kiddos are super into noodles (thanks to all the incredible cultures on our block!). I have to give street noodles a go.

  2. Pam says

    Singapore Street Noodles are a really good dish, but I had no idea they didn’t originate in Singapore. I haven’t ever made them at home before. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

  3. says

    Yum, yum, and more yum. I haven’t been to Singapore, but I’ve heard great things about the food. Can’t wait to bring some of the flavors home.

  4. says

    I have never heard of Singapore Street Noodles before, but they sure do look delicious. I will have to try this recipe out one night!

  5. Ann Bacciaglia says

    This dish looks so delicious and easy to make. I will have to get the ingredients i need to make this on the weekend.

  6. R Ong says

    I’m born and bred in Singapore and I’ve never heard, much less seen “Singapore Street Noodles”. The closest we have is the one that started in Hong Kong, as you alluded in the article, and is called “sin chow” ( literally “singapore fried”) noodles, which is a wok fried dish of thin egg noodles with small shrimp and Chinese roast pork (Char Siew), garnished with shredded lettuce. And no there is no curry powder. You probably have it confused with the Malay / Indian styled fried noodles otherwise called “Mee Goreng” (literally “noodle fry”) which has thick egg noodles, potato cubes, tomato, and minced mutton.

    I think this “Singapore Street Noodles” is yet another bastardised dish that got wrongly attributed to the country even though its origins are not even Asian. Examples are American Chinese dishes like chop suey, general tsaos chicken or egg rolls. Or how Indians will tell you that “chicken tikka masala” is really a dish that has toned down heat for the British sahibs.

    • says

      Thank you you for taking the time to comment. I’m so glad to see that you agree with all the points I too made about Singapore Street Noodles in this post. I will go on to say that much like other ‘mongrel’ dishes, whose origins are unclear and are inspired by different regions, the ending dish is delicious despite having no clear motherland to claim it!

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