Assam laksa

Georgetown – the capital city of Penang is famous as the capital of Malaysian cuisine, because here gathers many culinary quintessence, many culinary schools from around the world such as: Malaysian, Indian, Chinese, Italian,… George Town is an indispensable destination for food enthusiasts in Asia. In the midst of such a rich and diverse cuisine, it is impossible not to mention delectable street food because it is delicious, cheap and very easy to find.

Street food along Gurney Drive in Georgetown, Malaysia 
Georgetown cuisine | best street food in georgetown penang
where to eat in penang (1)
Georgetown street food | best street food in georgetown penang

From cafes to outdoor restaurants to fragrant street vendors throughout the neighborhoods, there are many different types of food on sale. However, among the countless delicious delicacy that you cannot enjoy alone in the whole world, we would like to introduce the 10+ best and most famous street foods in Georgetown’s culinary paradise that tourists cannot miss when coming to Georgetown.

Street food paradise or Penang
Delicious skewers | best street food in georgetown penang
A street food stall in Georgetown | best street food in georgetown penang

So, what to eat in Georgetown? Let’s check out our best eats Georgetown blog with the top rated +10 best food in Georgetown (George Town best food), famous food in Georgetown (Georgetown famous food), best street food in Georgetown Penang, best Chinese food in Georgetown and where to find them as follows!

Assam Laksa (#best street food in georgetown penang)

Assam Laksa dish looks like this but it is extremely delicious, rich.
Assam Laksa dish looks like this but it is extremely delicious, rich. | best street food in georgetown penang

Assam laksa is a traditional sour and spicy fish noodle or pho of Malaysia, also a signature dish of George Town in general, and more broadly of the Penang region. This is one of the famous street foods and is loved by many people, from tourists to natives.

Full Assam laksa usually includes thick rice noodles, chopped pieces of mackerel, and sliced vegetables, most commonly cucumbers, onions, mint, and lettuce. The broth of this dish is what differentiates it from regular noodle and pho dishes, and is also the highlight of the dish because it has a sweet taste from the meat. The sour taste comes from tamarind and pineapple, adding a little herbs, chili sauce, lemongrass, shrimp paste to help the dish taste more fragrant and slightly spicy. The strange blend of sour, spicy, and sweet flavors creates a bowl of Assam Laksa with an extremely attractive flavor.

Assam laksa | best street food in georgetown penang
An attractive hot curry bowl of Assam laksa | best street food in georgetown penang

You can easily find this dish at roadside vendors, prepared from dawn to dusk, or famous restaurants and cafes such as: Joo Hooi Cafe, Ayer Itam Assam Laksa, Myanmar. Own Cafe,…

Assam Laksa
| best street food in georgetown penang
Pasar Air Itam Assam Laksa
Pasar Air Itam Assam Laksa is famous so if you don’t want to wait then come after noon. | best street food in georgetown penang

Where to try it

  • Joo Hooi Cafe: 475, Jalan Penang, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia;
  • Ayer Itam Assam Laksa: Jalan Pasar | Ayer Itam, Pulau Penang, Malaysia;
  • My Own Cafe: 2, Lebuh Cannon, George Town, Pulau Penang, Malaysia.

Curry Mee (#george town street food)

| best street food in georgetown penang

Curry Mee is a spicy vermicelli/thin yellow noodle dish, basically formed from a combination of curry and coconut milk. This is a dish influenced by Indian and Chinese culinary traditions, then prepared flexibly according to the style of each region and different restaurant. That’s why Curry Mee can be considered the quintessential dish of Southeast Asian cuisine, popular not only in Malaysia but also Singapore and Indonesia.

Granny preparing curry mee | best street food in georgetown penang

Curry Mee usually consists of thin yellow noodles or rice vermicelli with traditional side ingredients such as curd, clams, bean sprouts and duck blood. Depending on each restaurant, this dish may have additional ingredients or replace missing ingredients such as: eggs, pork, tofu, shrimp, squid, clams, fish cakes, bean sprouts, pig’s blood, etc. .. Not only does it have a rich amount of “topping”, but the broth of this dish is also very rich. The combination of curry, hot peppers and coconut milk creates an unusually sweet and spicy sauce.

Curry Mee (Curry Laksa)
Curry Mee | best street food in georgetown penang

This is called spicy vermicelli/noodle dish because before serving, it will be marinated with a little traditional chili sauce and chopped coriander leaves. If you want to enjoy but can’t eat spicy food, you can tell the owner or staff before eating, surely the flavor this dish brings will not disappoint you.

  • Address: Tuai Pui Curry Mee: 23 Lebuh Kimberley, George Town, Penang Island, Malaysia;
  • Lorong Seratus Tahun: 55 Lorong Seratus Tahun, George Town, Penang Island, Malaysia.

Char Koay Teow (#best food in georgetown)

| best street food in georgetown penang

Char Koay Teow is one of the most typical street foods in Malaysia and Singapore (more specifically in Malaysia, Penang). Initially, this was a dish of poor farmers and fishermen, prepared from leftover ingredients. But, thanks to its delicious taste and eye-catching color, this dish is gradually popular on the streets of Georgetown today.

This dish has certain Chinese influences, in that char means fried and koay teow is flat rice noodles. Based on that name, Char Koay Teow is usually made with flat rice noodles, fried with shrimp, eggs, oysters, bean sprouts, chili, chives, and Chinese sausage. All of these ingredients are coated in light or dark soy sauce, or it can also be shrimp paste, garlic, or lard, depending on the customer’s request and taste.

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In George Town, some restaurants that offer this dish still serve it on banana leaves or palm leaves to retain the inherent tradition of this dish. Also because it is so popular, you can find it everywhere in George Town.

Spicy stir-fried noodles with the famous White Coffee | best street food in georgetown penang
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Tiger Char Koay Teow, Georgetown | george town street food

Some restaurants have delicious Koay Teow dishes that visitors can visit to enjoy such as:

  • Tiger Char Koay Teow: 181 Lebuh Carnarvon, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia;
  • Charcoal Char Koay Teow: 82, Jalan Siam, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia;
  • Kafe Heng Huat: 108, Lorong Selamat, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia.

Cendol (#george town best food)

Cendol is a particularly traditional dessert in Southeast Asia, appearing in many variations across Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam and Myanmar.

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Cendol is a strange sweet noodle mixture, which is thin strips of jelly noodles, prepared in many different colors, combined with the sweetness of coconut milk, palm sugar, and grated regular syrup. Due to its popularity, variations can include many additional ingredients such as red beans, jackfruit or durian, while jelly noodles can be made with tapioca flour, and rice flour or mung bean flour. In particular, it has the flavor of fragrant pandan leaves, creating a perfect, cool dish, suitable for eating after a tiring trip.

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Cendol dessert - Malacca
Cendol dessert – Georgetown, Penang | george town street food
cendol melaka food blog (1)
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| george town street food

Some typical shops selling it can be mentioned below:

  • Joo Hooi Cafe: 475, Jalan Penang, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia;
  • Penang Road Famous Teochew Chendul 1: Gurney Plaza Penang, George Town, Penang, Malaysia.

Kaya Toast

| george town street food

Kaya toast is a popular breakfast in Malaysia and Singapore. This dish consists of toasted bread filled with Kaya jam. Just imagine, this Kaya jam is made from fragrant, lightly sweet coconut water, served with a slice of hot, crispy bread that will definitely make you fall in love.

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Kaya Toast is made from sugar, soft-boiled eggs, coconut milk and pandan flavor. Not only Kaya toast and jam, many restaurants often serve it with a slice of fatty butter and a boiled egg on the side, combined with a cup of milk tea or hot coffee to really complete a quick lightly breakfast. Starting breakfast with Kaya toast, enjoying more coffee will make your conversations easier, arousing excitement for a tiring day.

Some typical Kaya Toast shops are:

  • Toh Soon Cafe: Lebuh Campbell, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia.
  • Roti Canai Transfer Road: 56 Jalan Transfer, George Town, Pulau Penang, Malaysia.

Roti canai

Roti Canai
Roti Canai | best food in georgetown

Another dish of Indian origin is Roti canai. It is made based on a traditional Indian flatbread recipe, but it has been made newer in Malaysia, so this dish does not exist in India. Therefore, this dish is also considered a traditional dish in George Town.

roti canai kuala lumpur must eat food
| best food in georgetown

Roti canai is a pan-fried flatbread, made from flour, water, eggs and fat. It is like a dough made into a string shape before being fried and flattened. The dough is folded many times, so the cake has a multi-layer texture, the inner layer is soft and smooth and the outer layer is crispy. Usually, it is served simply in its traditional round form, eaten with eggs, meat, curry sauce, cheese or sweet sauce (mostly mixed with curry). Roti canai is crispy and melts in your mouth, and the sweet taste of the cake is really delectable. A small note: if you want to eat this type of crispy bread from street vendors, it has another name: mamaks.

Lan Roti Canai (1)
| best food in georgetown
| best food in georgetown
  • Roti Canai Transfer Road: 56 Jalan Transfer, George Town, Pulau Penang, Malaysia.

Pasembur (#famous food in georgetown)

Pasembur is a Malaysian fruit and vegetable salad, this is also a special term associated with Penang. Therefore, this dish has another quite popular name, Rojak.

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As its name suggests, Rojak means a mixture of traditional Asian vegetables and fruits, found in Malaysia such as: chopped cucumbers, potatoes, radishes, beans, radishes, bean sprouts. In addition, there will be individual ingredients, which usually include curd, squid, fried shrimp, fish cakes, boiled eggs, sausages, fried crab, octopus or other types of seafood…. All are covered in a rich and quite thick peanut sauce, so it has a sweet and spicy taste because the flavors are combined from many different types.

Penang’s Rojak | best food in georgetown

Or, there is also another version, which uses some of Malaysia’s best fruits: mango, cucumber, jicama, apple, pineapple, guava are all very crunchy and fragrant, mixed with squid and fried bread. All are fried is also very crispy, served with different sweet and salty sauces, decorated with crushed roasted peanuts, bringing the cool and crispy taste of fruit, energy from starch in bread, freshness of seafood. Concentrated seafood and sauces help keep food from being bland and greasy.

Street food Kuala Lumpur Malaysia
Rojak – a unique Malay mixed fruit and vegetable salad | best food in georgetown

Some restaurants have delicious Pasembur dishes that visitors can try to explore such as:

  • Ho Wei Jeng, Esplanade Food Center, Jalan Tun Syed Sheh Barakbah, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia.
  • Hussain Pasembur: Medan Renong, 29, Jalan Tun Syed Sheh Barakbah, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia.
  • Gurney Drive: 172 Solok Gurney 1, George Town, Penang, Malaysia.

Nasi kandar, Nasi lemak

It can be a bit confusing, when Nasi dish, simply a rice dish, can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and is also the main meal, but is brought into street food in Malaysia. The most important reason is that you can easily find this dish in George Town, from roadside vendors to restaurants. The two most popular types are Nasi kandar and Nasi lemak.

About Nasi kandar, this classic dish is a combination of fragrant white rice, and several types of curries, ribs, with different spices. For curry, you can freely choose according to your culinary taste, it can be vegetables, meat or seafood. The name kandar comes from the fact that this dish was once sold and transported using kandar bamboo sticks, which is also a typical dining style in George Town. This dish is rich in nutrients, and so delicious that today, Nasi kandar is often prepared and sold at shopping malls or street vendors nationwide and is traditionally enjoyed as a warm, nutritious breakfast.

Nasi Kandar | famous food in georgetown
Nasi kandar kuala lumpur
| famous food in georgetown
All dishes are displayed in a glass case in front of the restaurant | famous food in georgetown

As for Nasi lemak, it is considered national dish of Malaysia in general. Nasi lemak consists of rice cooked in coconut milk and is often eaten with chicken, anchovies, curry, cucumbers, peanuts and boiled eggs. The dish is rounded out with the addition of a spicy chili sauce called sambal. Although originally invented as a breakfast dish, it soon surpassed its original purpose, evolving into a dish commonly sold by street vendors in Malaysia, and to this day, has become into a Malaysian national dish that can be eaten at any time. The dish is not only delicious on top, but it is also very hot and fragrant when carefully packaged in banana leaves.

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Nasi Lemak Malaysia street food around the world (1)
Nasi Lemak.
Nasi Lemak Tanglin malaysia must eat (1)
| famous food in georgetown

Visitors can visit the typical restaurants below to enjoy the two savory dishes above.

  • Hameediyah Restaurant: 164, Lebuh Campbell, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia.
  • Nasi Kandar Line Clear: 177 Jalan Penang, Lebuh Campbell, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia.
  • Mews Cafe: 77 Lebuh Muntri, George Town, Penang, Malaysia.
  • Deen Maju: 170 Jalan Gurdwara, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia.

Masala dosa in Little India

Masala dosa in Little India is traditional South Indian street food, made from soaked rice flour and lentils baked in a thin pastry and often stuffed with potatoes, onions and mustard seeds. Some places also have many other ingredients such as coconut, ginger or milk. Because the cake is quite high in sugar, it has an attractive sweetness. The dish is often decorated with grated coconut and chopped coriander. This dish is often consumed as a quick snack or as part of any meal of the day.

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If you walk around Little India right in the center of town, you will surely smell delicious aromas in the entire market dedicated to sweets along the streets of India.

To enjoy this delicious dish, please visit the following restaurants.

  • Little India, George Town, Penang, Malaysia.
  • Shusi Banana Leaf: 71A Penang Street, George Town, Penang, Malaysia.
  • Sri Ananda Bahwan: 55 Lebuh Penang, George Town, Pulau Penang, Malaysia.

Ice cream

It can be seen that ice cream is a dish found everywhere in the world, from streets to eateries, cafes, and restaurants. In George Town, too, ice cream is available in every corner or main road.

George Town can be considered a paradise for ice cream. You can enjoy coconut ice cream, sweet and refreshing from the milk, mixed coconut, sprinkled with some crushed roasted peanuts, and the very reasonable price will make you want to eat it anytime, especially when going out. Playing is too tiring, jostling among a noisy crowd. Or, enjoy Ice Estate, which is an ice cream shake with many types of toppings, served with waffles, toast and shaved ice. It will make you realize that ice cream also has many flavors, this dish brings A strange taste different from the one in Vietnam but also very cool and delicious.

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Matcha soft-severed ice cream

Regardless of the ice cream, when you have to walk in humid weather, in a very large city, you can try Ais Kacang ice cream – a combination of shaved ice, grass jelly, and beans. The combination of red and rose syrup is also very attractive.

The most famous ice cream parlors in Georgetown are:

  • Merry Me Dessert: 107, Lebuh Victoria, George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia.
  • Jalil Special Ais Kacang: Jalan Padang Kota Lama, George Town, Penang, Malaysia. (near City Hall)
  • Hema Hema Ice Cream: 88, Lebuh Campbell, George Town, 10200 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
  • Light Street, George Town, Penang, Malaysia.

It can be seen, through the above article, that it is not wrong to say that Georgetown is a culinary paradise, especially street food, which not only attracts tourists but also fascinates local people. Street food is easy to find everywhere in this beautiful city of Georgetown with many types, diversity, colors, aromas and flavors. If you come to George Town, try to try a few to understand more about the street food here.

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Are you looking for more top things to do in Penang: Tours, activities, attractions and other things? Read more: Penang travel blog — The fullest guide for a budget trip to Penang of Malaysia. And Penang in 1 day: Let’s check it out here.