The 10 Best Restaurants in Ipoh, Malaysia

Curry mee
Curry mee | © chee.hong
Photo of Sam Bedford
19 May 2018

Decided to visit Ipoh, the vibrant and cultural capital of Perak, and looking for the best spots to dine? Keep reading and discover our favourite restaurants in Ipoh serving Chinese, Indian, and Japanese food as well as a special type of bamboo banana leaf.

Yee Fatt Dry Curry Noodles

Restaurant, Chinese, Asian
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curry mee
Choose from dry curry or curry noodle soup | © Alpha

Few restaurants in Ipoh have been open and serving the same dish for over 40 years. But Yee Fatt is an exception. The coffee shop-style spot offers two dishes: dry curry noodles or curry noodle soup. Expect long lines on the weekends and evenings as the locals flock here to get their fix. Anyone who wants to sample some of Ipoh’s finest food should make an effort to visit this restaurant.

Nasi Kandar Ayam Merah (Nasi Ganja)

Restaurant, Indian, Malaysian, Halal, $$$
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Located inside Yong Suan coffee shop, the small Nasi Kandar-style vendor is a hit with locals. Having the bizarre nickname as ‘Nasi Ganja’, referring to the addictive nature of the food rather than having marijuana-infused rice, it’s easy to see why it features on the must-visit restaurants in Ipoh. Grab a plate of rice and choose from the Halal-friendly sides, including chicken, fish, curries and homemade chutney. Expect long lines at lunchtime, but long lines usually mean good food in Malaysia.

Dai Shu Geok

Restaurant, Asian, Chinese
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Hakka yong tau foo
Hakka style Yong Tau Foo served with red sauce | © Banej

Translating to ‘Big Tree Foot’, this restaurant in Ipoh offers some of the best Yong Tau Foo in the city. The Hakka-style stuffed tofu comes with either curry noodles or Laksa often attracting hungry crowds at lunchtime. Other must-try dishes include the Assam Laksa. Expect a local-style, basic restaurant with mouthwatering meals usually costing less than RM20 ($5.10) for two people including drinks.

Restoran M. Salim

Restaurant, Indian, Malaysian, Halal, $$$
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Resoran M. Salim has two outlets in Ipoh: one is along Jalan Yang Kalsom near Ipoh’s new town; the other branch sits further south on Jalan Tokong. Food options include a selection of South Indian favourites with the fish head curry, marinated fried chicken and mutton curry coming recommended. Expect an affordable and filling meal in this Halal-friendly restaurant in Ipoh.

Meal service:

All Day, Breakfast, Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Late Night


Casual, Fast Casual

Central Point Food Court

Restaurant, Malaysian, Indian, Chinese
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Central Point Food Court, located next to Parkson Ipoh Parade shopping mall, is a typical Malaysian food court. Dozens of vendors line the huge dining hall, selling everything from chicken rice to noodle soup. Order the food directly from the vendor and a member of staff will come to the table to take drinks. Typical meals cost less than RM10 ($2.50). Beer is available too. While dining, be sure to look up at the unbelievably gigantic ceiling fan. This food court in Ipoh makes the perfect spot for a cheap eat or to unwind with a cold beer, local-style.

Meal service:

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, All Day


Casual, Fast Casual

Ipoh Hainan Chicken Rice

Restaurant, Chinese, Halal, $$$
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hainan chicken rice
One of the must-try dishes in Ipoh is the Hainan chicken rice | © Pixabay

Ipoh Hainan Chicken Rice is inside a former colonial building with minimalistic décor on the interior. Expect a delicious plate of Hainan Chicken at less than RM7 ($1.80) for a filling portion. The Halal-friendly restaurant in Ipoh is worth visiting in the heart of the new town for a delicious and cheap eat.

Kannaas Banana LEAF

Restaurant, Indian, $$$
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Located next to Medan Kidd Bus Station and a short walk from Ipoh Railway Station, Kannaas Banana LEAF makes for a convenient spot for lunch or an early dinner. The speciality is bamboo biriyani, a style of cooking where rice is almost fully cooked before it’s stuffed inside a length of bamboo and steamed. Expect a fusion of flavours and spices as the rice gets gently tapped from the tube of bamboo onto a banana leaf. Anyone looking for a unique gastronomical experience in a convenient location should consider this restaurant in Ipoh.

Greentown Dim Sum Café

Restaurant, Cafe, Chinese, Malaysian, Halal, $$$
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Looking to enjoy halal dim sum in Ipoh? Check out Greentown Dim Sum Café, a short walk from MBI Clock Tower. They offer a variety of options ranging from individual dim sum to set meals, all of which are prepared and cooked to order inside this comfortable air-conditioned restaurant. The menu has other savoury meals, including rice and noodle-based dishes as well as a selection of sweet treats such as egg tarts. Prices are slightly high for Ipoh, but this is Ipoh’s only halal-certified dim sum restaurant.

Kampai Restaurant

Restaurant, Japanese, Sushi, $$$
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Craving Japanese food in Ipoh? Look no further than the family-owned Kampai Restaurant to the south of Garden D.R Seenivasagam. The menu includes a decent selection of sushi, fresh sashimi (the raw fish often confused with sushi), and seaweed salad. Set lunch meals are available too. While prices are on the more expensive side, customers will be rewarded with the best Japanese dishes in the city, if not Perak State.

Deen CT Corner Cendol

Dessert Shop, Dessert
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While not the typical restaurant in Ipoh, Deen CT Corner Cendol consists of a small vendor selling a Malaysian favourite: Cendol. The iced snack gets mixed with a variety of toppings such as jelly, red beans, and a more savoury spoonful of glutinous rice. For just a few ringgits, customers can get a refreshing treat and enjoy one of the best desserts in Malaysia.