Malaysian food and where to find it in London

1 October 2021

Homesick Malaysian trying to satisfy your cravings for some food from your home country? Or simply someone interested in trying out some of the famous Malaysian cuisines?

Malaysian food

You’ve come to the right place! In this article, I will first introduce to you some of the cuisines commonly found in Malaysia followed by how to find them in London. 

Well-known Malaysian dishes

Malaysia is famous for its wide variety of food attributed to its multicultural background. Here are some of the most popular cuisines which you should definitely try:

Nasi Lemak

Nasi Lemak is basically rice cooked in coconut milk. Traditionally, it is accompanied by sambal (a chilli-based sauce), anchovies, boiled egg, cucumber and peanuts. It is widely recognised to be the national breakfast in Malaysia. Depending on your preference, some of the accompaniments may be substituted with others such as sambal squid, chicken curry, fried chicken with spices (ayam berempah) and so on.  



Laksa is a spicy noodle soup, unique in such a way that there are so many variations to it. There are Penang Assam Laksa, Laksa Johor, Curry Laksa, Sarawak Laksa and so on just to name a few. My all-time favourite has to be the Penang Assam Laksa which basically is made up of chewy Laksa noodles soaked in a sour and appetizing broth topped with pineapple slices and mint leaves, a slight addition of some “hae ko” (a thick sweet shrimp paste) brings it to perfection by balancing off the sour taste.​​​​​


Roti Canai 

Roti canai is a flatbread dish usually served with dal or other types of curry. For those who have low spicy tolerance, there is an option to have it served with condensed milk or sugar. There is also a wide variation to this dish just like Laksa, some of the common ones are: Roti Telur, Roti Milo (yes, the Nestle drink!), Roti Cheese and so on.


Char Kuey Teow 

Char Kuey Teow, often abbreviated as CKT is basically flat rice noodles stir-fried with soy sauce, chilli, cockles, bean sprout, egg and sometimes prawn. The essential part to this dish is the “wok hei” (breath of wok) which sets a good CKT apart from the rest of its kind.


(P.S. Writing this list is making me seriously hungry. This shows just how delicious the dishes are!

Malaysian restaurants in London

So where to find mouth-watering Malaysian food here in London? Let’s now take a look at a list of eateries which offer them.

Before we start, here are a few things to note:

  1. The list below is arranged in ascending order based on distance from UCL Bloomsbury Main Campus (taken from Google Map).
  2. It is common for some of the restaurants to have a threshold of minimum spend above which they accept credit/debit card as a payment method, while some only accept cash payment, so do remember to have some cash ready in your wallet before you go!

Roti King (0.5 miles)


Located near the London Euston station, Roti King is only a 9 minutes walk from our main campus, definitely a good place to visit on your way back from a tutorial. It is a popular place though, so be prepared to queue before you get to enjoy the food!

Address : 40 Doric Way, London NW1 1LH

Google Link : https://g.page/rotikinguk?share

Website : https://www.rotiking.co.uk/

Available on UK Food Delivery App? : UberEats, Deliveroo

Laksamania (0.8 miles)


As its name suggests, Laksamania has a wide range of different types of Laksa in the house. To name a few : Ipoh Curry Laksa, Penang Assam Laksa, London Laksa (sounds really localised isn’t it) and Soft Shell Crab Laksa. 

Address : 92 Newman St, London W1T 3EZ

Google Link : https://g.co/kgs/z564b5

Website : http://www.laksamania.co.uk/

Available on UK Food Delivery App? : UberEats, Deliveroo, Just Eat

Laxsa Soho (1.1 miles)


A Malaysian restaurant located in the heart of Soho. Just like Laksamania, as its name suggests it serves various types of laksa as well as other noodle and rice dishes. 

Address : 37 Old Compton St, London W1D 5JY

Google Link : https://g.co/kgs/pY2unH

Website : N/A

Available on UK Food Delivery App? : Deliveroo

Melur London (1.6 miles)


This is the first restaurant I ever visited in London. Located along Edgware Road (the place I do my grocery shopping), it serves authentic Malaysian dishes and sometimes offers buffet sessions on certain weekends or near festive season! Quick note : it is located in the basement, you could easily miss it so take a careful look when you arrive along Edgware Road.  

Address : 175A Edgware Rd, Tyburnia, London W2 1ET

Google Link : https://g.page/melur-london?share

Website : https://www.melur.co.uk/index.php

Available on UK Food Delivery App? : Not available 

Malaysia Hall Canteen (2.6 miles)


There’s something really special to this place, the canteen is located in the building of Education Malaysia London. You will need to ring a bell before the staff let you into the building. The official policy is that only Malaysians can enter the canteen whereas non-Malaysians can only enter if they are accompanied by a Malaysian. This is one of the places which serves some of the most affordable Malaysian food ranging from Nasi Lemak, Assam Laksa, Nasi Kandar and so on besides also having some traditional kuih-muih at an affordable price. 

Address : 34 Queensborough Terrace, London W2 3ST

Google Link : https://g.co/kgs/jJuFMT

Website : N/A

Available on UK Food Delivery App? : Not available 

Putera Puteri London (2.6 miles)


As much as it is quite far from UCL main campus, it is worth visiting Putera Puteri to make yourself feel like prince and princess (putera and puteri translates to prince and princess respectively in English), oh well I mean to enjoy some really good Malaysian food here. 

Address : 179 Queensway, London W2 5HL

Google Link : https://g.co/kgs/Uks77X

Website : https://m.facebook.com/putera.puteri.london.official/

Available on UK Food Delivery App? : UberEats, Deliveroo, Just Eat

Options to cook at home

We have finally come to the most exciting part of this article! With the high living cost in London, one will need to have a wise budgeting to survive through the month. One of the best ways, well-known among students, of course is to cook your own meal and avoid eating out. 

First of all, it is possible to have a basic version of Nasi Lemak with just a few ingredients :

Waitrose Sambal Oelek £1.80 

(I have only tried the Waitrose sambal oelek personally, but any sambal oelek of your choice should work too)


Tilda microwave coconut steamed basmati rice - £1.00 (Tesco)



 If you don’t mind whether or not the rice has been cooked in coconut milk (like me!), you can go for even cheaper options like Tesco Microwave Long Grain Rice at £0.30 etc..



That sums up to just about £2.80! It is also completely up to you to add other sides such as egg, anchovies and so on.

Up next, we have a substitute for Assam Laksa just to satisfy your craving for a bit when you are running low on budget.

Maggi 2 minute noodles Assam Laksa Flavour 


Between the time when I first arrived in the UK, up until the time of writing of this article, I have only heard about the existence of this instant noodle somewhere in online grocery stores or Chinatown but never seen it in person before. However, it is worth knowing its existence and who knows you might just see it on the rack of the store you visit! 

There are always many recipes available online for other dishes as well, but beware sometimes cooking them on your own might cost more than what you have to pay if you were to have them in a restaurant. This could be due to the fact that most of the ingredients are sold in large amounts or just simply time consuming to find (remember time is money as well). If you are genuinely interested in cooking, you are always encouraged to challenge yourself to be the next MasterChef! 

It is not too difficult to find home food for Malaysians far from home and to explore Malaysian cuisines for those who just want to try them out. Hope this article has been an interesting read for you and have fun exploring the options available in London!

By Sherwen Kang, MSci Mathematics and Statistical Science