8 things to eat at ShiLin Night Market, Taipei, Taiwan
Night markets abound in Taipei and they are absolutely must-visits when you are in Taipei. There are tons of shops that you can head into to purchase affordably-priced goods and not to forget the amazing and delicious Taiwanese street food! When talking about night markets, we definitely have to discover the biggest one - Shilin Night Market!
Shilin Night Market is one of the most popular, and the largest night market in Taipei. There are street stalls, as well as an underground night food court for you to settle your dinner.
How to get to Shilin Night Market?
Take the metro to Jiantan Station or Shilin Station. It is just a short walk from these stations and just follow the crowd! The bulk of the stores are closer to Jiantan Station so that is the preferred way!
What to eat in Shilin Night Market?
Wondering what to eat in Shilin? Check out our guide as to what you should eat in Shilin Night Market, Taipei, Taiwan.
You may also be interested in Taipei Food Guide: things to eat and where to find them!
1. Stinky Tofu
You absolutely have to try stinky tofu in Taipei. Stinky tofu is fermented tofu that has a strong and pungent smell. Yes, although it is really quite stinky, it tasted really good!
The tofu is deep-fried and drenched in a sauce when it is served in a small plate or plastic bag. Should you be trying it for the first time, pinch your nose and place it into your mouth. We tasted one, and couldn't stop popping the rest inside our mouths!
There are many stinky tofu stores in Shilin Market. The rule of the thumb is to go for the ones with a queue! :)
2. Taiwanese Fried Chicken
There are tons of fried chicken stalls but one of our favourites is Hot Star XXL chicken. We do have a few in Singapore, but where better to taste fried chicken from the country of origin!
We also have a new find to share - HomeTown Barbecue Chicken!
There were long queues on the two times we were at Shi Lin so we decided to queue too to give it a try! Hometown-Barbecue-Chicken was so good! They use fresh chicken, deep fry it, soak it in a sweet barbecue sauce, and slap it onto the grill. The result is a sticky, chewy, slightly crispy fried chicken!
A must-try when you head to Shilin Night Market! :)
3. Sweet Potato Balls
This was one of favourite street snack, we went back on another day just because we were craving for this. Purchase the sweet potato balls from the store right next to Ah Zong Mian Xian (now closed). It is double-fried, and you can sprinkle them with plum powder! Absolutely yummy!
4. Oyster Omelette
Taiwan has got an interesting oyster omelette. It is more starchy than those in Singapore and is usually served drenched with a sweet sauce. We tried this at 忠誠號蚵仔煎, located right beside the Shi Lin Underground Night Market.
The restaurant is usually crowded but the queue moves along quite quickly. We stood in line for about 5 minutes and managed to snag seats! Do note that you'll normally have to share seats if you are a party of 2.
Besides oyster omelette, we also tried their minced meat rice and a portion of their stinky tofu!
No. 15-32, Dadong Road, Shilin District, Taipei City, Taiwan 111
5. Hot Plate Beef
This is another must-have when visiting Shilin Night Market. There are a couple of stores selling the hot plate beef but we liked the one next to the Shilin Underground Food Centre. Just look at that sizzling beef, 'nuff said.
For those who don't eat beef, you can also order other meats such as chicken or pork. All hot plate comes with a bowl of soup and a cup of red tea! It is also affordably priced at NT$160 = about $7 SGD. Although this joint is not where you get the best cut steaks, the portions are huge and oh-so-satisfying!
Hot Plate Beef 大統大牛排
No. 89之17號, Danan Road, Shilin District, Taipei City, Taiwan 111
During our time in Taipei, we also tried Niu Mo Wang Steak House 牛魔王牛排. This is chain restaurant that has several outlets in Taipei.
Although it is slightly more expensive than Hot Plate Beef, I would say that the texture of the beef here is slightly closer to that of steak in steak restaurants. The set meal also provides you with a salad, a piece of garlic bread, a bowl of soup and your steak (or choice of other meats or fish). For your soup, you'll get to choose between a cream-based soup (with puff pastry, which is a nice little touch) or french onion soup. We tried one of each and definitely think that the puff pastry's more worth it!
I definitely love Taiwan's hotplate steaks; they always come piping hot! :)
Niu Mo Wang Steak House 牛魔王牛排
No. 83, Danan Road, Shilin District, Taipei City, Taiwan 111
6. Scallion Pancake
Another Taiwanese local street food is the scallion pancake. It is pan-fried on a hot grill plate and served with some sweet sauce. It is extremely sinful because lots of oil were used in the frying process.
The scallion pancake is also a popular breakfast dish for the Taiwanese. They usually have them wrapped around some scrambled or fried eggs and they will have some soya bean milk with it!
7. Grilled Meat on Skewers
This was delicious, the queue was extremely long but definitely worth the 10 minutes wait. Honey was slathered over the barbecued meat making it both oily and sweet-tasting.
8. Fried Ice Cream
After having all the savoury food, you may just need a dessert like this! Although it is not that special for those who live in Southeast Asia, others who have not tried this before may find it intriguing. The salty crispy outer crust together with the inner soft, cold, and melty ice cream is just a treat!
Unlike fried ice cream that I've tried before, this one at Shilin is not greasy and very light-tasting!
You'll find this booth right next to the oyster omelette restaurant that I've shared earlier!
So there you go, watch out for these 8 food and drinks when you are heading to Shilin Night Market. Definitely, these are not all the food that is in Shilin. There are also a whole lot more, including banana pancakes, dumplings, etc. but we're only recommending the nicest food we've tried! Also, Shilin Night Market's food changes quite often so we hope to visit Taipei more often to update this list! What are some of the other food items that you've tasted and could not forget when you visited Shilin Night Market? Share them with us in the comments below!
Should you wish to take a guide to take you around the night market, tasting at least 12 food items (including some that we've mentioned here) click here to book a 2.5 hours tour.
Besides ShiLin Night Market, consider visiting RaoHe Night Market for a smaller night market, with other food choices!
This post was first published on 23 April 2018 and has been updated on 26 March 2019 to reflect recent changes to the food scene at Shilin Night Market.