LDNGuide

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 10 best Malaysian restaurants in the city.


THE SPOTS

Normah's review image
8.9

Normah's

££££

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.


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 good 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, 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 £7.50. 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.


photo credit: Aleksandra Boruch

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Layang Layang

££££07432 482888

Despite opening in 2022, this homely Malaysian spot on Pembridge Road feels like it’s always been here. With friendly service and an upstairs dining room that’s inviting and bright, you’ll want to stick around even if you pop in for a couple of chicken curry puffs. Especially once you see the next table dunking their crispy-edged roti into the creamy chicken curry. And you absolutely should. The layered flatbread is delicious enough to eat plain, but even better when used to scoop up the tender beef rendang. An instant Notting Hill favourite. 


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 in Peckham's Market Stalls food/shopping hall, hits all the right notes for a casual weeknight dinner. It’s a walk-in only, 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 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 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—Londoners who've been time and time before and solo diners craving homely Malaysian classics. You’ll find all the traditional Malaysian dishes, but the go-to move here should be that nasi lemak. Fragrant rice with coconutty curry sauce, alongside tender chicken that’s been cooked in that same coconut-heavy curry. A casual spot, it's perfect for a low-key dinner with a group of friends in central. 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. The Soho favourite has made a name for itself by serving homely, huge portions (you'll definitely want to take away any leftovers). Pick between things like a Singapore curry laksa, with a coconut curry broth, shredded chicken, and king prawns, and 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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Normah's review image
8.9
Review
Normah's

A small spot inside Queensway Market serving some of the best Malaysian food in London.