6 Places In Singapore With Scrumptious Yet Low-Calorie Meals That Are All Under 500 Kcal

HPB Lower Calories Meals

When living in a food cosmopolis like Singapore, finding a meal is no difficult feat. With a plethora of affordable food options at every turn, coupled with hectic lifestyles, eating out becomes a convenient (and often desirable) alternative. However, this convenience comes at a price.

All too often, temptingly sinful options abound, and even if you wish to eat healthier, it can be quite difficult to identify the “healthier” options from the myriad of choices in our food paradise. The result? An increased risk of health problems courtesy of a high-calorie diet and over-eating. A plate or two of char kway teow may not seem like much now, but multiply that over the years and the results won’t be as innocuous.

Thankfully for us, even if we continue to eat out, there is a way to discern which dishes are worthy of a spot at your table. In hopes of promoting a healthier lifestyle for Singaporeans, the Health Promotion Board (HPB) has been expanding its Healthier Dining Programme (HDP) to make healthier food alternatives more widespread and accessible.

If you think this is going to be another spiel about eating your greens and avoiding all indulgences, think again. Instead, consider this: what if we told you that you could have equally healthier food without compromising on taste?

Regardless of your taste preferences, with your favourite brands now offering delectable dishes, each at 500 calories or less – yes, you can enjoy laksa within this range too! – healthier options are becoming increasingly easy to get your hands on! A familiar sight for most, just keep an eye out for Healthier Dining Programme identifiers when you’re next perusing your food options. This way, not only are you treating your body (and taste buds) right, you are also retaking the reins of meal planning without giving up the convenience of dining out. A win-win solution!

Jack's Place Grilled Salmon Steak

Photo credit: Jack’s Place


Since 1966, homegrown brand, Jack’s Place has been plating up hearty Western fare centred around its core offerings of steaks. Expanding its menu beyond beef cuts, the brand has been pivoting to a healthier angle over the recent years, and has included an assortment of HPB-endorsed healthier dishes in its menu.

There is more to Jack’s Place than just its steaks. Just as appetising an option, salmon steaks have enough heftiness to allow for an equally satisfying mouthfeel. What is more, salmon is lower in calories and saturated fat content, and can improve your heart health with its intrinsic omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids as well.

In addition, courtesy of the kitchen’s team expertise on the grill, their meticulous heat control mean that Jack’s Place Grilled Salmon Steaks are served with wonderfully seared exteriors complemented with juicy and tender cores.

50 Jurong Gateway Road
JEM, #04-15
Singapore 608549
Tel: +65 6734 8812
Daily: 11am – 10.30pm
Website: www.jacksplace.com.sg
** Multiple outlets islandwide.

McDonalds McMuffin Set Alt


Can fast food really be made healthier? As counterintuitive as it may seem, McDonald’s has done just that. Together with HPB’s Healthier Dining Programme, McDonald’s has refined its menu to offer numerous healthier dining options to consumers in Singapore which are healthier, yet still as tasty.

What this means for you as a consumer is that you can now order an entire set meal at McDonald’s that is endorsed as a healthier dining option! For those looking for a fuss-free yet nourishing breakfast, consider going for the Egg McMuffn Meal. Easy on your palate and stomach yet teeming with protein, this wholegrain-based breakfast sandwich contains egg and chicken ham held together with a savoury, melted layer of cheese for a hearty morning pick-me-up.

That’s not all – complete your meal with a warm serving of fresh corn and a steaming hot cup of your preferred source of caffeine. A wholesome meal that fulfils all necessary food groups, who would have thought that a McDonald’s meal could be a healthier option than many traditional breakfast alternatives!

107 North Bridge Road
Funan, #01-16/17/21
Singapore 179105
Tel: +65 6952 0352
Sun to Thu: 7am – 11pm
Fri & Sat: 7am – 12am
Website: www.mcdonalds.com.sg
** Multiple outlets islandwide.

Penang Culture Penang Assam Laksa

Photo credit: Penang Culture


Penang food tends to conjure up images of rich street food with intense bursts of flavours – items far removed from the minds of the health-conscious. Looking to bring about a confluence between the healthy crowd and authentic Penang street food, the culinary team has refined their recipes to reduce calories in their popular crowd favourites, highlighting that satisfying street food cravings need not be divergent from a healthier diet.

Delightfully tart, the Penang Assam Laksa is a mouth-wateringly fragrant number that sets our palates alight with its complex taste. Unlike the more common (and high-calorie) iteration with a broth built on coconut milk, the exciting flavours from the assam variant are instead obtained through prolonged simmering of a curated blend of spices and herbs.

With a rich broth made from sardines, ginger flowers, tamarind and fragrant herbs, the Penang Assam Laksa is a healthier and colourful dish that will placate any yearning for the vibrant flavours of Penang street food. And all that without sacrificing the kick of a hot steaming bowl of Nyonya laksa, while being lower in calories.

NEX, #B1-76
Changi Airport T2, Level 3
Compass One, #03-13
JEM, #04-27
VivoCity, #B2-23E
Website: www.gdgroup.com.sg/locations#penang-culture-locations
** Multiple outlets islandwide.

Pizza Hut Prawn Aglio Olio

Photo credit: Pizza Hut


Another surprising inclusion for many, feasting on Italian food need not mean putting your day’s calorie intake at peril. When you’re next at Pizza Hut, look past the array of pizzas and you will be met with a titillating collection of Italian mains with multiple healthier options that are no less rich in flavours.

Capitalising on the expertise of its kitchen team, Pizza Hut concocted an HPB-approved healthier pasta dish with fresh and lively flavours at a more conservative calorie count. Instead of subsisting on a surplus of sauce to create a semblance of dimension, the chefs instead rely on natural ingredients to enliven the dish.

The fresh garlic and chilli padi make up the base of the dish’s taste profile, imparting a savoury base that is overlaid with an undertone of spicy zest. Containing less fat and more protein, the dish is flourished with succulent prawns for a light and refreshing finish. Now you can treat your taste buds to the flavours of Italy while maintaining a healthier lifestyle!

4 Tampines Central 5
Tampines Mall, #02-02
Singapore 529510
Tel: +65 6781 3413
Daily: 11am – 10pm
Website: www.pizzahut.com.sg
** Multiple outlets islandwide.

Saybons Seafood Bisque Soup


Looking for affordable, tasty French food without subjecting yourself to exorbitant prices and the stuffiness of up-market establishments? Headed by Le Cordon Bleu-trained executive chef, Daphane Loke, Saybons seeks to subvert the intimidation and luxury factor typically associated with the cuisine by providing affordable, authentic French fare to all.

A staple in French cuisine, bisque is a luscious number normally served as an entrée, where its opulent flavours whet the appetites of the hungry in preparation for the rest of the meal. Typically, cream is added to the broth to produce its characteristic smooth thickness; unfortunately, this adds calories to the dish and makes it a heavy meal option.

Circumventing the calorie inflation from the use of cream, Saybons’ version adopts a mixture of stock and fresh tomato puree to bestow a similar texture to the bisque. Using only natural ingredients with no preservatives, the distinct notes of prawns induce an intense aroma of seafood with every mouthful. All in all, Saybons’ Seafood Bisque Soup is a sumptuous affair without the downside of being calorie-laden – it truly is a dish that offers the best of both worlds!

9 Bishan Place
Junction 8, #02-43
Singapore 579837
Tel: +65 6258 3138
Mon to Fri: 9.30am – 9.30pm
Sat & Sun: 9am – 9.30pm
Website: www.saybons.com
** Multiple outlets islandwide.

Swensens BBQ Chicken

Photo credit: Swensen’s


More than just an ice-cream parlour, Swensen’s has become a household name for all Singaporeans as a family restaurant that caters to everyone. Bolstering its restaurant offerings over the years, the chain now includes over twenty full-service restaurants that provide American-styled diner fare evocative of retro nostalgia.

As part of the HDP initiative together with HPB, one of Swensen’s healthier culinary inventions is the BBQ Chicken. By choosing a protein that is congruent with American fare and yet familiar to the local palate, Swensen’s has updated its menu with healthier options without losing its signature old-school American charm.

The BBQ Chicken dish is a tender and juicy number, with the chicken brushed with an in-house guava BBQ sauce that gives a sweet yet tangy taste that is popular on the island of Hawaii. For those wanting more fibre, vitamins and minerals, why not order an extra helping of seasonal greens? Not only do their crispness provide textural contrast, their garden freshness cleanses your palate as well.


200 Victoria Street
Bugis Junction, #01-68
Singapore 188024
Tel: +65 6255 2052
Mon to Fri: 10.30am – 10.30pm
Sat & Sun: 8am – 10.30pm
Website: www.swensens.com.sg
** Multiple outlets islandwide.

HPB Healther Option Symbol

The next time you plan on eating out, keep an eye out for HPB’s Healthier Dining Programme (HDP) identifiers when perusing food options. With over 2,400 HDP partners across 9,000 locations in Singapore, you will be amazed by the sheer variety of healthier food choices at your fingertips. Gone are the days of picking health over taste – take control of your diets today by choosing food that is both good in taste and better for your health. Tasty food can be healthier too!

For a list of F&B outlets dishing out healthier options, check out the Healthier Dining Programme website at www.hpb.gov.sg/hdp.

This post was brought to you by Health Promotion Board Singapore.