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5 Hawaiian Foods You MUST Try

One of the most unique things about the Hawaiian Islands is that they are a melting pot of cultures, and bring together many different ethnicities from around the world. Being part of the United States, the influence of American culture is heavy, and due to the close proximity to Asia, there is a heavy influence of Asian cultures as well. And, with the earliest arrivals to the Hawaiian Islands coming by way of the Polynesian Islands, the Polynesian influence is perhaps the strongest, and easily the most important.

With the variety of cultures that make society in Hawaii, there is one thing that is bound to be great, and that is the FOOD! Everywhere you go in Hawaii, you are sure to find something great to eat, and maybe even something that you are not crazy about trying. Either way, there are some absolute must try foods in Hawaii, and we’ve found 5 that should be on your list of foods to sample.

  1. Poke – available just about anywhere you go, this local favorite is always at the top of any list of foods to try. Fresh fish combined with different sauces and spices create a dish that is very versatile, comes in many different flavors, and can be enjoyed as a snack, appetizer, or main dish.
  2. Malasada – everyone loves a doughnut, and the malasada is the Hawaiian version of a doughnut. Originating in Portugal, the malasada is not quite as sweet as the traditional doughnut, but is just as delicious, and if you opt for the version with a filling, be ready to reach for another. And another….
  3. Loco Moco – we hope you’re hungry because this is a monster of a meal. A staple of the Hawaiian cuisine, this dish combines rice, protein (usually hamburger), an egg, and gravy, mixed together to create a delectable meal that was created in Hilo.
  4. Kahula Pork – fill in the blank with an adjective that describes one of the most delicious things you’ve ever tasted and it fits. This is the star of any luau buffet, and having been cooked in an Imu (underground oven) is one of the most unique Hawaiian foods around.
  5. Shave Ice – no, not shaved ice, shave ice. The methods are quite different, and this is the perfect choice for any hot Hawaiian day. Some of the best places are on the North Shore of Oahu, and everyone likes different flavors and modifications. When ordering, you can add adzuki beans (sweet Japanese beans), condensed milk, and the flavor of your choice to make this exactly the way you like it.

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