The Best Malaysian Restaurants In London guide image


The Best Malaysian Restaurants In London

The best flaky roti canai, tender beef rendang, and fried noodles in the city.

Do we strongly believe that roti canai should be its own food group? Do we keep seeing beef rendang in our dreams? Do we know where you should go if you’re looking for some top-tier Malaysian food? The answer to all of these questions is a big resounding yes. From a one-woman show in Queensway to a Soho spot specialising in laksa, here are the best Malaysian restaurants in the city.



This isn't just one of the best Malaysian restaurants in London, this is one of the best restaurants in London. One restaurant, one chef, one roti beef rendang that will inevitably become two when you need to double check that a roti can be this gloriously soft and flaky. Yes, this low-key, small Malaysian spot inside Queensway Market is the kind of place where sharing seems like a good idea—the fried chicken, laksa with king prawns, assam pedas seabass, and that roti beef rendang are all essential orders—but you’ll quickly become as protective over the food in front of you as a poodle with a chicken bone. Chef Normah, we love you. Just be sure to book ahead as it’s a small space.

Sudu means spoon in Malay—and that’s exactly what you’ll be encouraged to do at this charming, cosy restaurant in Queen’s Park. Spoon mouthful after mouthful of tender, rich beef rendang into a pillowy, egg-filled roti, or straight into your mouth. But it’s not just the excellent versions of Malaysian classics that make Sudu a standout spot. The homely, laid-back, neighbourhood restaurant invites intimate catch-ups and romantic date nights. The aromatic chicken rice, comforting nasi goreng kampung, and the charming server who turns out to be the bartender’s mum do a good job of tricking you into thinking you’re at a friend's house. But the hum of the other dinner guests will quickly remind you that you’re not, in fact you’re in the kind of restaurant that makes us grateful to live in London.

Whoever you choose to bring to this bustling spot in Chinatown—a group of friends for a catch-up or just yourself at lunchtime—they'll leave full and satisfied. The menu of Malaysian and Singaporean classics has something for everyone. It serves the kind of wholesome, nutty beef rendang you’ll crave at least once a month. There's buttery roti canai with a halal spicy chicken curry and its vegetarian version of char kway teow is one of the best in town. The cherry on top? A meal here is excellent value—£30 can take you a very long way, especially if you come with a small group and order a couple of curries, some rice dishes, and a fried noodle number to share.

If you haven’t heard of Roti King, where have you been? This cult Malaysian restaurant is in a basement in Euston and specialises in roti canai—soft, flaky flatbreads served with a bowl of delicious curry. The dhal one is £6.50, but the mutton version is our favourite and worth the extra pounds. They also serve really great versions of Malaysian hawker stall staples like char kway teow, nasi goreng, and a proper laksa for around £9. Hit it for a tasty, no-frills meal with a few mates, though be warned that there can be queues at peak hours. And in case you were looking for one more reason to go, it’s BYOB.

It was at this Paddington spot (from the people behind Sudu) that we cheated on beef rendang. We have no remorse. Because the sambal tumis udang petai—a stir-fried prawn and petai (also known as stinky bean) dish—was equal parts spicy, creamy, and addictive. And that’s not all that’s great about this moody restaurant. The menu is filled with comforting Malaysian classics done extremely well, in a cosy and intimate two-floor space. The street level dining room is ideal for small groups, with plenty of round tables for four, while the basement is where to bring a date or a big group where you can be tucked away in their mini cave.

Weekdays are dreary with the potential to be depressing, so eating lunch out is a must. As far as antidotes to dreariness go, Dapur is up there. Getting a plate of fragrant coconut rice and all the trimmings—ayam masak merah and beef rendang—from the daytime cafe is just the ticket for anyone who’s looking for a pick-me-up. There are six or seven Malaysian curries to choose from, but the familiar (the rendang) and the fiery (chicken in a tomato chilli sauce) are always good. The outdoor seating is delightful and the rendang is the necessary hug everyone around Holborn craves for a working lunch—it’s not open on weekends.

This casual spot on Holloway Road serves dishes like fried chicken, gado gado, and sambal prawns with rice. But the real star of the show is their special laksa—featuring king prawns, poached chicken, soft tofu puffs, noodles, and a shrimp-based broth that makes you sweat in excitement. Summer, winter, spring, and all the rest—you'll want this whenever. Bear in mind it’s a popular spot and it can get a little crowded. But for hefty, flavour-packed portions and a drink for around £20 a head, Sambal Shiok will quickly become a weeknight dinner go-to.

Mambow, a modern Malaysian small plates spot, injects needed soul into Peckham’s Market Stalls food/shopping hall. It’s an order and collect situation but a friendly chat with the chef gives Mambow that welcoming warmth. Perch at a bar seat by the kitchen (recommended), find a spot in the dining space shared with other food outlets, or at a long table outside. Hovering for a space when it’s busy—with date-night couples and gossiping friends—is worth it for sour, earthy ikan assam pedas (fish curry) and lor bak, a salty pork and prawn roll encased in crunchy, deep-fried bean curd skin.

Open since 1998, this Chinatown staple has been around longer than most of the people you follow on TikTok have been alive. And once you try the nasi lemak you’ll understand why it continues to be a top pick for the people who know about it. You’ll find all the traditional Malaysian dishes, but the go-to move here should be that nasi lemak. Fragrant rice with a coconutty curry sauce poured on top alongside tender chicken that’s been cooked in that same coconut-heavy curry. It’s walk-in only and your whole party has to arrive before you get a seat, so consider that before inviting that friend who’s always having “TFL troubles”.

Despite an expansion from two-and-a-half to six tables, you still might easily pass right by this diminutive spot at the King’s Cross end of Caledonian Road if you’re not paying attention. And you’d be missing out. The Malaysian specialities here are all consistently excellent, especially the mee goreng and the kway teow goreng. With a menu big enough to keep you coming back time and time again, this place is as perfect when you’re in a dosa mood as it is when you’re in the mood for a rich and satisfying curry laksa.

Zero points for guessing what this Newman Street restaurant specialises in. Pick between things like a Singapore curry laksa, with a coconut curry broth, shredded chicken, and king prawns. Or opt for the sour and spicy penang assam number—just be prepared to ask for about 70 extra tissues when your nose inevitably starts running. It’s one of the best places for laksa in London and the compact but comfortable dining room makes it a great place to come with a small group, or even on your own for a lunchtime date with a bowl of steaming hot broth.

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The Best Malaysian Restaurants In London guide image