Chinese New Year 2022 | CNY 2022


Is it really Chinese New Year if you didn’t stuff yourself with dangerously addictive festive snacks? Here in Singapore, we take our food very seriously, so there’s almost no better way to usher in the festivities than to indulge in some delectable CNY goodies!

While it’s easy to simply pop that pineapple tart into your mouth, not many know about the stories behind these tasty treats we enjoy. Enjoy our quick guide on CNY snacks complete with their calorie counts (health is still important!), and learn a thing or two.

Looks like your dieting plans will be postponed…again. You can walk off some calories with various ongoing CNY events or enjoy some #stayhome activities while you digest.

Pineapple Tarts

93 calories per tart

This festive snack was born and made in Singapore, with the influence of the Peranakan Chinese! In Hokkien, the pronunciation for “pineapple” (ong lai) is the same as 旺来 in Chinese, which means “prosperity arrives”. In the past, these sweet and buttery tarts were mainly made in Peranakan Chinese households, and eventually led to its place as a staple festive snack. Tell us, are you on Team Golf Ball or Team Open-Faced Tart?


Bak Kwa

301 calories per slice

Bak kwa’s red colour signifies luck and fortune, which may go a long way in explaining its popularity during Chinese New Year. This festive snack originated from the Fujian province but our local version is slightly sweeter and smokier in flavour. BRB, drooling…

Love Letters

56 calories per piece

Like pineapple tarts, these are also a proud Singaporean creation! Love letters, also known as kueh kapit, are made from a batter of rice, tapioca flour, coconut milk (we love it lemak!), as well as sugar and eggs. In the past, love letters were also mainly consumed by Peranakan Chinese households. As more Singaporeans became more affluent in the 1970s, the demand for love letters increased, which eventually led to its popularity in Singapore.

They’re also said to be a way lovers communicated secretly in olden times. By consuming the love letter, it helped to remove the evidence and signified that the message from the lover was taken to heart.


Kueh Bahulu

60 calories per piece

Crossing over from Malay culture, this light, spongy snack is often a gift to people who travel by water. During Chinese New Year, it’s shaped like a fish, as fish has the same pronunciation as abundance in Chinese.

Interested in making your own CNY snack? Check out Keeping Traditions Alive: Sweet Reunions to learn how to make delectable Ondeh Ondeh cookies with Eunice from Bakers Brew Studio and what she and her mom thinks #SINGAPO人 Chinese New Year really means!

Mini Shrimp Rolls

23 calories per roll

Shrimp has the same pronunciation as ha in Cantonese, which stands for laughter and therefore happiness. Hence, eating these cute little rolls will bring you happiness each year!


Kueh Bangkit

15 calories per piece

Originally made in the shape of ancient China’s currency, these powdery, melt-in-your-mouth coconut cookies are now made in various symbolic animal and floral shapes e.g. goldfish represents prosperity, whilst chrysanthemum represents fortune.

Arrowhead Chips

40 calories per serving (30g)

The arrowhead vegetable symbolises good life and benevolence. It’s cut into thin slices and then fried for maximum enjoyment during Chinese New Year! Shiok.


Honey Cornflakes

83 calories per piece

An easy yet delicious treat to make, this sweet, crunchy snack embodies sweetness, which means having a sweet and happy life after eating this snack. For the adventurous, sprinkle these on your yusheng for sweet blessings (just a suggestion!)


46 calories per slice

Niangao, which literally translates to “year cake”, is a festive staple that is made from glutinous rice flour and sugar. As gao has the same pronunciation as the word high in Chinese, niangao is believed to reward those who consume it with prosperity and higher status in the new year.


Honeycomb Biscuits

45 calories per piece

Influenced by the Rosette cookies from Scandinavian countries, consuming these sweet delights symbolises a sweet year ahead. Well, because they’re sweet.

Kueh Lapis

237 calories per slice

Being multi-layered, kueh lapis symbolises longevity and is often associated with promotion and prosperity. This classic cake originated during colonial times in the Dutch East Indies and is very similar to the Dutch version of baumkuchen (literal translation: tree-cake from Germany). When it arrived in Singapore, local flavours such as cinnamon, clove, star anise and mace were incorporated. What can we say… We make things better here ;)


Peanut Cookies

50 calories per piece

Peanuts symbolise a long, healthy life for those who eat them. Not too much though — everything in moderation!

Mandarin Oranges

50 calories per fruit

Mandarin oranges are called gam in Cantonese, which is a homonym for “gold”. In Chinese, orange sounds like luck, hence these fruits are considered good luck, usually given in even numbers during visiting.

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