Our Top 10 List of All-Time Favorite Malaysian Breakfasts

By Kayreen – 23th Apr 2021

Malaysia Breakfast

When it comes to Malaysian breakfasts, there are many options to choose from as there are different ways to greet mornings and start early routines. From iconic Nasi Lemak to aromatic stir-fried noodles, there’s always something tasty for everyone to gobble.

Influenced by its multi-ethnic populace, Malaysia offers diverse cuisines, providing an endless assortment of mouthwatering foods. And given how deliciously tempting the choices are, breakfast might really just be the most important meal of the day. 

Read through our Top 10 list of all-time favorite Malaysian breakfasts (in no particular order). And hopefully, you’ll find some inspiration in these delectable-looking eats for your next meal. 

Do feel free to let us know your palate or craving for the day in the comment section below.

1. Nasi Lemak

Nasi lemak is a prime choice for Malaysians. It is a fragrant rice dish infused with coconut milk and pandan leaves accompanied by sambal chili, fried anchovies, cucumber, peanut, egg, or chicken. From traditionally wrapped in banana leaves where you can find from makeshift stalls in most local neighborhoods to premium restaurants, Nasi lemak is timeless and borderless. And guess what, Nasi Lemak is even on the list of TIME Magazine’s 10 most healthy international breakfasts!

photo credit: @kirthanaa

Malaysia Breakfast - Nasi Lemak


2. Roti Canai

Roti canai is a flatbread made by twirling the dough until it is flat and thin, folding it into a round shape, and grilling it with oil on a flatiron skillet. Typically served with dhal – a spicy gravy made from boiled chickpeas; or a mixture of your favorite curries.

You will be amazed at the ingenuity and varieties created by adding fruits, eggs, onions, cheese, or even ice cream to the plain regular bread (roti kosong). The next time you visit, try to be adventurous and discover your own Roti version!

photo credit: coach_fridajeb

Malaysia Breakfast - Roti Canai


3. Toast (Roti Bakar) + Half Boiled Egg

It may look simple, yet this traditional breakfast combination is well-loved by Malaysians! A cup of fragrant coffee or milk tea, charcoal-grilled bread with butter and kaya, and served with half-boiled egg, the sweet and salty blend satisfies every tip of your taste buds.

photo credit: vivienneeluv

Malaysia Breakfast - Toast boiled eggs


4. You Char Kway

You Char Kway is just flour, salt, egg, and dough deep fried till golden brown. It has a light crisp outside and slightly tender chewiness inside. It is mildly savory with a subtle underlying sweetness. There are many different ways to eat it, depending on the region. In Malaysia and Singapore, many people like to eat their You Char Kway by dipping it into the coffee. The savory fried dough soaks up the bittersweetness of local Nanyang coffee, making a delicious breakfast. 

photo credit: xideli_id

Malaysia Breakfast - You Char Kway


5. Chee Cheong Fun

Chee Cheong Fun was brought to the shores of Malaysia by 19th-century Chinese immigrants from Guangdong. In its original form, Chee Cheong Fun is a rice noodle roll served with soy sauce. Over time, the sauce became more varied in different parts of Malaysia, from shrimp paste to soupy curry sauce. And since Malaysians love spicy food, chili sauce or pickled green chilies are an available option.

photo credit: mightyfoodie

Malaysia Breakfast - Chee Cheong Fun


6. Dim Sum

Dim Sum is bite-sized food served in small baskets or plates, typically paired with Chinese tea. There are loads of variations to choose from and they can be prepared by either steaming, deep-frying, or baking until it is crispy golden brown. Dim sum restaurants have grown in popularity, with several restaurants serving halal versions of famous ones like siu mai or har gau; coming up with their innovative dishes.

photo credit: Kai Aoobtha

Malaysia Breakfast - Dim Sum


7. Stir-Fried Noodles – Mee/ Mihun/Keow Teow Goreng

Stir-fried noodles are the typical go-to dish for a hearty pick-me-upper. From mee goreng to Char Kuey Teow, these dishes get their distinct aroma from a high-temperature pan that is used to fry them. They can be served as simple as the fried noodle itself or adding extra sides like fishball, sausage, and fried egg coupled with curry sauce and sambal chili.

photo credit: woon.heng

Malaysia Breakfast - Mee Goreng


8. Nyonya Kuih

Instigated by the Peranakan Folks, Nyonya Kuih is a proud invention that people choose to surrender their sweet tooth craving. Its common main raw ingredients are glutinous rice, normal rice, tapioca flour. Special elements are added accordingly to create a different taste, such as pandan, coconut milk, red bean paste, peanut powder, and the essential component, coconut sugar (Gula Melaka).

photo credit: naked.asian.grocer

Malaysia Breakfast - Nyonya Kuih


9. Mee Rebus

Mee Rebus typically uses yellow noodles coated in thick, and often spicy gravy, made from beef, shrimp, and sweet potatoes. Other toppings include tofu, fish cakes, bean sprouts, hard-boiled eggs, fried shallots, and lime juice. A good toss of all the ingredients will yield satisfyingly robust flavors and multi-dimensional textures.  

photo credit: juliuslim

Malaysia Breakfast - Mee Rebus


10. Milo with Cream Cracker

Lastly (but not the least), the best breakfast combo for Malaysians! All-Milo is a malt chocolate drink that children rave over, including adults. It is the comfort food in every household. Most people choose to dip their cream crackers in the drink to get it soaked with Milo but not too long to retain its crunchiness. Nevertheless, it is also the best treatment for homesick Malaysians stuck abroad too!

photo credit: koksiew94

Malaysia Breakfast - Milo Cracker