Please wait
bak kut teh side dishes that are essential for a complete meal

10 bak kut teh side dishes that are essential for a complete meal

bak kut teh side dishes that are essential for a complete meal

No Time to Read? Here’s a Snappy Summary of This Article

  • Flavorful Heritage Dish: Bak Kut Teh, a rich and peppery pork rib soup, epitomizes the heart of Asian culinary tradition.
  • Culinary Harmony: Experience a symphony of tastes with the perfect balance of tender pork, aromatic herbs, and spices.
  • Quintessential Sides: Elevate your dining adventure with must-have accompaniments, from savory braised tofu to fragrant garlic rice.
  • Herbal Infusion: Delve into the health benefits of Bak Kut Teh’s herbal broth, believed to boost immunity and vitality.
  • Textural Delights: Savor the diverse textures of crispy dough fritters, providing a delightful contrast to the tender meat.


When it comes to comfort food, bak kut teh is a dish that holds a special place in the hearts of many Singaporeans. This herbal, meaty broth is a culinary masterpiece that warms the soul. But let’s be honest, bak kut teh alone is like a movie without popcorn—good, but not complete. So, what are the side dishes that can elevate your bak kut teh experience from good to unforgettable? Buckle up, foodies, because we’re about to take you on a gastronomic journey through the 10 bak kut teh side dishes that are essential for a complete meal.

1. Youtiao (Fried Dough Sticks)

Youtiao, or fried dough sticks, are the quintessential sidekick to bak kut teh. Imagine dipping these crispy, golden-brown sticks into the piping hot broth and taking a bite. The contrast of textures and the way the youtiao soaks up the herbal goodness is nothing short of heavenly. It’s like a match made in culinary heaven, and no bak kut teh meal in Singapore is complete without it.

2. Braised Peanuts

Braised peanuts are a classic side dish that adds a different texture to your meal. These peanuts are slow-cooked in a soy sauce mixture until they become soft and flavorful. When you pop one into your mouth, the nutty taste complements the rich, meaty flavors of bak kut teh perfectly. It’s a simple yet satisfying addition that you shouldn’t overlook.

Follow us on InstagramFacebookTelegram now!

3. Salted Vegetables

Salted vegetables bring a tangy kick to the table. Often made from mustard greens, these veggies are pickled in salt and sometimes spiced up with chilies. The salty, sour notes cut through the richness of the bak kut teh, providing a refreshing contrast. It’s a palate cleanser that prepares you for the next spoonful of that delicious broth.

4. Tofu Puffs

Tofu puffs are like little sponges that soak up the bak kut teh broth, making each bite a burst of flavor. These deep-fried tofu pieces are light and airy, providing a different mouthfeel compared to the meaty pork ribs. It’s a must-try for anyone looking to add a vegetarian touch to their bak kut teh feast.

5. Rice

Rice is a staple in any Singaporean meal, and bak kut teh is no exception. Whether you prefer white or brown rice, the grains serve as the perfect canvas for the robust flavors of the broth and meat. Each spoonful becomes a harmonious blend of textures and tastes, making the meal truly complete.

6. Tea

Yes, tea! Traditionally, bak kut teh is enjoyed with Chinese tea. The tannins in the tea help to cut through the fattiness of the pork, making each sip a refreshing experience. Whether it’s Oolong or Pu’er, the right tea can elevate your bak kut teh meal from great to extraordinary.


Read Also:

10 Facts About Bak Kut Teh in Singapore: More Than Just Pork Ribs Soup


7. Enoki Mushrooms

Enoki mushrooms add a delightful crunch to your bak kut teh experience. These thin, long mushrooms have a subtle flavor, making them the perfect vessel for the broth’s herbal notes. When cooked, they become tender yet retain a bite, adding a unique texture to your meal.

8. Fried Fish Skin

For those who love a good crunch, fried fish skin is a must-add to your bak kut teh spread. These crispy delights offer a seafood twist to the predominantly pork-based meal. Dip them in the broth for a few seconds to soften them slightly, and you’ve got yourself a snack that’s both crunchy and flavorful.

9. Pickled Chilies

If you’re a fan of spice, pickled chilies are a must. These chilies are usually soaked in a vinegar-based solution, giving them a tangy heat that pairs well with the rich, herbal flavors of bak kut teh. A little goes a long way, so use sparingly unless you’re a true spice aficionado.

10. Century Egg

Last but not least, the century egg. This Chinese delicacy may be an acquired taste for some, but its creamy, jelly-like texture and complex flavors make it a fascinating addition to your bak kut teh meal. The century egg adds an exotic touch, making your dining experience truly unique.


So there you have it, the 10 essential side dishes that will make your bak kut teh meal in Singapore truly unforgettable. Whether you’re a traditionalist who sticks to youtiao and rice or an adventurous foodie willing to try century eggs and pickled chilies, these sides offer something for everyone. The next time you find yourself craving this local favorite, make sure to complete your meal with these delectable additions. Happy eating!


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What are some traditional Bak Kut Teh side dishes in Singapore?

A: Popular choices include braised peanuts, you tiao (dough fritters), and preserved vegetables, enhancing the meal’s authenticity.

Q: How does Bak Kut Teh benefit health?

A: Bak Kut Teh’s herbal broth is believed to boost immunity and vitality, contributing to overall well-being.

Q: Can you suggest alternatives to pork in Bak Kut Teh side dishes?

A: Opt for tofu or mushroom-based options for a delightful twist on traditional Bak Kut Teh accompaniments.

Q: What’s the significance of garlic rice in Bak Kut Teh meals?

A: Garlic rice complements the dish by adding a fragrant and flavorful element to the overall dining experience.

Q: Are there vegetarian options among the essential Bak Kut Teh sides?

A: Yes, consider braised tofu or vegetarian you tiao as delicious plant-based alternatives to accompany your Bak Kut Teh.

2021 Tropika Newsletter Header - Got an article to suggest

Have an Article to Suggest?

Tropika Club is always looking for new and exciting content to feature in their magazine and they value the input of our readers. If you have any noteworthy content or articles that you believe would be a great addition to Tropika Club’s magazine, we are open to suggestions and encourage you to reach out to us via email at [email protected]. By doing so, Tropika Club values your expertise and knowledge in the matter and appreciates your willingness to help. We will review your recommendations and update our list accordingly

Meanwhile, Check Out Tropika Club’s Ecosystem of Websites

Tropika Club Magazine – Tropika Club Magazine is a Singapore-based publication that features articles on a wide range of topics with a focus on local businesses and content for the region. The magazine emphasizes supporting local businesses through its #SupportLocal initiative, which includes coverage of everything from neighborhood hawker stalls to aesthetic clinics in town. In addition to highlighting local businesses, Tropika Club Magazine also covers a variety of local content, including beauty, lifestyle, places, eats, and what’s on in Singapore and the Asia Pacific region.



Jiggy enjoys a good bargain and can be found hunting for discounts and bargain at your local discount stores or thrift shops. She's an avid recycling fan and believes in contributing actively to sustainability and caring for Mother Earth.

This website is protected by copyright.