10 Best Tasting Pineapple Tarts You Should Try in Singapore
Time flies! We have just welcome 2016 three weeks ago. Yet, in about another three weeks’ time, we will be having our annual reunion dinner with our loved ones to welcome the Lunar New Year! This festive is all about getting together with your family and friends, catching up over a scrumptious spread of Chinese delicacies. Well, our favourite part of the Lunar New Year is getting to savour some of the BEST pineapple tarts in Singapore!
History of Pineapple Tarts
Have you wondered how pineapple tarts were brought into Singapore? As early as 1593, pineapples were brought into Malaya from South America by the renowned Italian explorer, Christopher Columbus. The years that followed saw widespread pineapple plantations in Singapore which resulted in the country becoming an important center of the global pineapple-canning industry. One of the big pineapple plantation in Singapore is at the northern part of Singapore, where the present Yishun Town is located.
The creation of pineapple tarts was largely attributed to the Peranakans who were strongly influenced by the Portuguese settlers in Malaya, who in turn were well-known for their pastries and tarts. With the abundance of pineapples in the area, it was being turned into pineapple jam/paste. Combining the pastries and pineapple paste gave birth to the popular pineapple tarts today.
In Hokkien and Cantonese families, pineapple translates to “Ong Lai” which means “Prosperity Come” and to add, pineapple is golden in its rawest form, therefore giving these tarts to your loved ones signify the Gift of Gold and wishes of prosperity.
So, what makes a good pineapple tart?
Personally, we prefer ours to be fragrant, buttery and with the right amount of sweetness – everyone wants to have a 甜甜蜜蜜 (romantic) relationship right?! On top of this, the exterior shouldn’t be too flaky and the pastry shouldn’t be too dry. We love a good melt-in-your-mouth kinda pineapple tart! This year, we shortlisted TEN of our favourites all around Singapore!
Believe us when we say it was an extremely “unique” experience to journey to different corners of Singapore just to obtain our top ten favourite pineapple tarts. It was a literal journey to both the east side and the west! For example, did you know that Kele Confectionery’s “factory” is located at the Jurong Food Hub, which is right beside Jurong Fishery Port?! Yes, it sounds super far and out of reach yet, we took the trouble to switch between MRT and buses and were really satisfied as our efforts have paid off! The aroma lingering in the air inside their factory was so wonderful. Lucky for us, we were treated to a sampling session where we were offered to try their original traditional pineapple tarts, golden cheese pineapple balls and two new flavours, the cocoa pineapple balls, as well as, the black phoenix pineapple balls. Other than Kele Confectionery, we also went to places such as The Raffles Hotel, industrial area in Ubi and the culturally-rich Katong area for pineapple tarts! With all the walking and exploring, we feel less sinful having over-indulged in these addictively yummy pineapple tarts! Let us begin by introducing the ten different brands of pineapple tarts in no order of ranking.
Amethyst Pastry & Cakes 紫晶阁西饼店
Address: Blk 524A Jelapang Road #02-04, Greenridge Shopping Centre
Contact: 6759 2338
Over the years, Amethyst Pastry & Cakes has created two signature festive treats, their famous cheese pineapple tarts available every Lunar New Year and their Hainanese mooncakes which are available every Mid-Autumn Festival, that have delighted Singaporeans. Since year 2000, they have continually improved their pineapple tart recipes and introduced new items on top of their seasonal favourites. Their traditional pineapple balls goes at $24 for about 36 balls while their pineapple cheese balls goes at $26. Amethyst sells other Lunar New Year pastries such as Love Letters ($20), Sugee Cookies ($20) and Prawn Roll ($20) etc.
Address: 8A Admiralty St, #05-09, Food Xchange @ Admiralty, Singapore 757437 (Headquarter)
Contact: 6570 4980
For over fifteen years, Bake Inc has been providing customers with freshly baked daily bread and cakes and currently, they have ten confectionery stores island wide in Singapore. Each store offers a variety of products ranging from freshly baked daily bread, Singaporean’s favourite cakes and traditional assorted biscuits. During festive seasons such as the Lunar New Year, they do offer pineapple tarts too! It’s probably one of the few places where you get the cheapest pineapple tarts, at only $5.50 per 20+ pieces.
Address: 2 Tampines Central 5, #01-19/22, Singapore 529509
Opening hours: 10am – 10pm (Mon-Fri). 9am – 10pm (Sat, Sun & PH).
Bakerzin has been offering a tempting array of luscious sweets since 1998 and today, proudly shares its heavenly creations through its outlets island wide. During this festive season, Bakerzin will launch their signature traditional Yuan Bao pineapple tarts ($29.80 for 21 pieces). According to one of our friends, her mother even brought these “lucky yuan bao” into the casino! If you believe in such luck, do let us know if it really works! This year, Bakerzin is introducing the Parmesan Cheese pineapple tarts ($29.80 for 21 pieces). Parmigiano cheese from Italy is baked together in the buttery pastry, which gives a combination of saltiness from the cheese and lightly spiced pineapple filling, such that it wouldn’t overwhelm the sweetness. Other than pineapple tarts, Bakerzin also offers Good Luck Cookies which comes in nine different flavours and Prosperity Lapis Surabaya.
Address: Blk 3020, Ubi Avenue 2, #01-121, Singapore 408896
Opening hours: 8am – 7pm (Mon-Fri). 8am – 4pm (Sat & Sun). Closed on alternate Sundays.
Surprised to find a pastry shop smacked in the middle of an industrial area? Don’t give it a miss! They offer samplings for their Lunar New Year goodies and we are really wow-ed by their pineapple tarts. Although the shop front isn’t very attractive, the staffs are very friendly and helpful and their pastry is definitely worth every count of calories. Their pineapple tarts are going at $22 for 20+ pieces. Remember to grab them earlier or else the office crowd would have cleared their stocks by the end of the day!
Address: 139 East Coast Road, Singapore 428829
Opening hours: 8.30am – 8.30pm (Tue-Sun). Closed on Mondays.
The love for authentic Peranakan food is what inspired the Chin family to share their favourite recipes at Glory since 1979. Glory offers five kinds of pineapple tarts – traditional, jumbo tarts, golden pillow, apple shape and pineapple shape. A 650g of apple shape pineapple tarts cost $20. Besides pineapple tarts, Glory offer customers festive cookies and snacks such as almond cookies, green pea cookies, chili tapioca crackers and agar agar in shapes of goldfish and rabbit.
Address: Tanjong Pagar MRT Station, #BI-03
Opening hours: 10am – 9pm (Mon-Fri). 11am – 6pm (Sat). Closed on Sundays & PH.
For years, Joyus has uphold their belief that, “every tart and every biscuit is made from traditional recipes passed down from generation to generation”. Its humble beginnings started out as a homely set up and Joyus is proud to have grown to become one of our locals’ favourite. They strongly feel that natural, handmade freshness is important hence, they select only the finest ingredients and painstakingly handmade their pineapple fillings instead of using industrial pre-packs. From kneading to rolling, cutting, moulding and finally, packing these tarts, every step has been done passionately and dedicatedly in order to give customers the quality and warmth that can only be found in food that is baked from the heart. Pastries here are free from preservatives and colouring. For $21, you get a 20+ pieces box of pineapple tarts.
Address: 15 Jalan Tepong, Jurong Food Hub, #06-16, Singapore 619336
Contact: 6560 1249
Since Kele’s business commencement 30 years ago, they have been continuing their spiritful legacy of pineapple tarts and pastries. Their pineapple tarts were voted the best in Singapore during a competition held by a local shopping mall in 2013. These tarts were also featured in a renowned airline’s travel magazine the following year. In their quest to be Singapore’s brand for pineapple tarts, Kele is dedicated to using the best quality ingredients in making mouthwatering products as souvenirs for their customers. A tin of 725g of traditional pineapple tarts cost $21.40.
Le Café Confectionery & Pastry
Address: 264 Middle Road, David Elias Building, Singapore 188990
Opening hours: 10.30am – 7pm (Mon-Sat). 10.30am – 4pm (Sun & PH).
Le Café is one of Singapore’s oldest and finest cake and pastry shops since its establishment in 1949. Hence, it’s no surprise that they are well recognized for their quality and unique taste of their products. Their selections are 100% crafted by hand and contain no pork or lard. Le Café is also the first to introduce round pineapple tarts aka “Gold Ball” tarts! The moist pineapple filling is encased in their buttery, crumbly pastry. Mmm … A bite guarantees 100% gratification! These “Golf Balls” are available only in 20 pieces bottle, 10 pieces bottle ($11.30) and 10 pieces box. Remember to consume within six weeks from the day of purchase and note that these “Golf Balls” do not require refrigeration. If you’re planning on bringing these overseas for friends, hand carry this item due to its fragility.
Address: Np. 802 Bukit Batok West Avenue 5, #01-03, Bukit Gombak MRT Station, Singapore 659083
Opening hours: 6.30am – 10.30pm daily
Behind the story of a humble bean that has grown to be part of people’s lives in Singapore lies this non-complex philosophy – Life’s Simple Pleasures. Indeed, it is the simple pleasures in life that fill us up and move us. Through Mr. Bean’s relationships with their customers, staff and the community, they hope to inspire and touch lives as they are entrusted by their customers to be part of their daily life experiences. Pineapple tarts happen to play a big role in being one of our lives’ simple pleasures. Mr. Bean’s traditional pineapple tarts are sold at $14.80 for 400g.
Address: #03-05 Raffles Hotel Arcade, 328 North Bridge Road, Singapore 188719
Opening hours: 10.30am – 7pm (Tue-Sat). 10.30am – 6pm (Sun & Mon).
Popular for their pineapple “cakes”, each and every pineapple at SunnyHills is carefully selected, hand peeled and cut before being crafted into their luscious paste. They advocate a generous Fair Trade policy during all phases of production, thus ensuring the sustainability of these glorious organically grown fruits. Only the freshest and finest ingredients are chosen at SunnyHills. Their eggs are obtained from Sunny Eggs Taiwan farm, renowned for using classical music to inspire the breeding process while their gourmet baking flour is obtained from Japan and their pure and natural butter from New Zealand. A box of 10 pineapple “cakes” is sold at $25.
With our shortlisted 10 favourite pineapple tarts brands, we roped in a total of 20 family and friends to help with our tasting session and grade according to the following criteria – (i) fragrance, (ii) buttery, (iii) sweetness, (iv) texture, (v) appearance and (vi) packaging. Grades range from 1 to 5, with 1 being poor to 5 being excellent. The total score is upon 30 marks. As seen from the table above, our scores were collated and averaged out. Here’s our top 5 favourites!
1. Kele Confectionery
Pineapple tarts from Kele give customers the right amount of sweetness. Its pastry is not too flaky nor too dry, it simply melts in your mouth! Warning – this is extremely addictive! Haha! On top of its wonderful taste, the packaging is very presentable and this can easily be a good gift for anyone or everyone!
2. Le Café Confectionery & Pastry
Customers love this for their huge, unique “golf ball” size! It is filling enough and provides ample satisfaction. You know you need to run around visiting relatives and friends over the Lunar New Year to the extent you might not get to sit down for a proper meal due to too many visitings. Hence, this is the perfect snack to fill your tummy temporarily! Yums indeed!
3. Joyus Pastries
We love that the pineapple fillings here are homemade, with no added preservatives nor colouring. Their packaging may look simple now but we feel that if they improve on their packaging, perhaps, more people might purchase and give this as presents to overseas friends, letting them know how good our Lunar New Year delicacies are.
Bakerzin’s creative “yuan bao” shaped pineapple tarts will make your in-laws happy. We like the mild sweetness of their pineapple filling. Their crust isn’t too flaky nor too hard. The size is perfect for a few bites. Bakerzin puts effort into their presentation and we believe people would like to get this as corporate gifts or just gifts for their family and friends.
Amethyst’s pineapple balls are miniature in size but still gives a burst of flavours. We feel if the size is slightly bigger, these pineapple balls will become hotsellers. We like its oriental packaging too!
Hope we have provided enough information as a guideline to help you decide on which sinfully delicious pineapple tarts are worth your calories. Do remember to order earlier to avoid disappointments! Here wishing you a prosperous and abundant Lunar New Year! Have fun and indulge more!