You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars and take an entire vacation to feel like you’re in a tropical place like Hawaii.
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If you’ve been to Hawaii or another Pacific island for vacation, you probably feel madly in love with the delicious food and flavors. How convenient is it to make these Hawaiian recipes right in your own kitchen? And you don’t even have to drive to the airport to get there.
You can bring all the exotic flavors right into your kitchen with these authentic Hawaiian recipes.
Hawaii, a tropical paradise known for its vibrant culture and picturesque landscapes, also offers a unique and diverse culinary experience that is as colorful as the islands themselves. Hawaiian cuisine, with its rich history and fusion of flavors, has found its way into the hearts and homes of food enthusiasts around the world.
The indigenous people of Hawaii have their own distinct culinary traditions, drawing on the natural bounty of the islands. Root vegetables like taro and sweet potato, seafood, and fruits such as pineapple and coconut feature prominently in their dishes. In addition, the islands’ history of immigration has brought a variety of global influences to the table. Chinese, Japanese, Filipino, and Portuguese communities have all left their mark on Hawaiian food, creating a fascinating fusion of flavors.
One cannot discuss Hawaiian cuisine without mentioning the iconic luau, a traditional feast that showcases the island’s dishes in a lively and welcoming atmosphere. From tender kalua pork cooked in an underground oven to creamy haupia, a coconut-based dessert, these recipes reflect both the indigenous culture and the various international influences. As you explore these Hawaiian recipes, you’ll be transported to the warm and sunny beaches of Hawaii, surrounded by the taste of paradise.
Hawaiian food is tropical and uses a combination of ingredients you’re probably not used to, which gives it that unique flavor.
When you want to mix it up from your regular routine, you’ll need to try these Hawaiian food recipes so you can feel like you are right under the palm trees.
Dig into one of these recipes the next time you’re trying to have a Hawaiian dinner night with the family.
Try our Hawaiian Shrimp. It’s the bomb!
Guava is an ingredient you don’t use very often, which is why it’s so great to have a dessert recipe that integrates it effortlessly.
Not only will you have a cake that has guava flavor but you’ll also have cream cheese topping and an extra guava gel topping as well.
This is one of those Hawaiian dishes you’ve probably had before.
There’s a great mix of flavors on this pizza that gives it such a unique profile, but it’s good enough that anyone can enjoy it.
With some salty and tender ham pieces mixed with the tangy and sweet pineapple, this pizza is in a world of its own.
To really make this dish something special, you’ll want to take the time to roll out your own pizza crust.
Buying store-bought dough will save you a ton of time though. Once you have all the ingredients on you just throw it in the oven and wait for your delicious pizza to come out.
This is one of the simplest desserts to make and it has hardly any ingredients.
This was originally used as a topping for cakes, but it’s so good the Hawaiians turned it into their own dessert.
You’ll be finished with this recipe faster than it took you to prepare and you’ll have wonderfully good bars the whole family can enjoy.
Hawaiian dishes do it best when it comes to mixing tropical flavors with satiating meats.
This Hawaiian chicken recipe is no different because you get all the savory flavors of your chicken mixed with the sweet and tangy flavors of pineapple.
The other secret ingredient is going to be the marinating mixture that you will pour over your thighs before cooking.
You want that chicken to soak up all of the soy sauce and Asian sweet chili sauce before firing up the grill.
That’s another thing, if you really want this chicken to stand out, you’ll throw it on the grill like a traditional Hawaiian roast.
Butter mochi is absolutely delicious to make and the coconut is what gives it that unique Hawaiian flavor.
The recipe is so easy to make too, so you’ll end up throwing it into your weekly rotation as a nice treat.
This is a tropical version of your trail mix because it has some of the same great flavors but adds a slight ocean twist.
Instead of just pouring in the regular rice cereal, you’ll be adding some aji nori furikake, which is a seasoned seaweed and sesame rice topping.
Don’t be scared if you’ve never tried seaweed, because it won’t be the mushy green-looking kind that still lives in the ocean.
This version is all dried up and brings some extra crisp to your snack.
The best part about this mix is you can make it in batches to carry with you on a good hike or while exercising.
You might not have known the macadamia nut was a treasure on the island of Hawaii, but locals have been finding creative ways of adding it to recipes for generations.
This cookie is just what you need too. It has sweet flavors with a tender cookie that almost melts in your mouth.
You’ve probably had Asian fried rice but this Hawaiian twist gives it a more sweet and tangy balance.
You’ll get everything that makes Hawaiian cuisine special in this fried rice, like pineapples, ham, and peppers.
This is a great side to serve with a chicken or pork dish because you can even cut some of your meat and throw it right into the fried rice.
The presentation looks just as good as it tastes, so this is also a great one to bust out at a party when you’re trying to impress the guests.
9. Mai Tai
You haven’t had a tropical drink until you’ve tried a mai tai.
It’s popular in tiki culture because of the exotic flavors and wonderful colors, but you can have it anywhere in the world.
Even though this drink has a colorful presentation, don’t be fooled by its beauty because it can get boozy.
Throw all the ingredients into a cocktail shaker and serve on ice for a wonderful drink experience.
Kebabs are one of the easiest meals to make because once you chop up your ingredients you just stick your skewer through them and put everything on the grill till it’s done.
You don’t even have to stick with the recipe either! You can throw any ingredients that you want onto the kebabs.
Just don’t stray too far from the original because you need to mix all those classic Hawaiian flavors if you want this dish to be authentic.
This dish goes best with some grass skirts and some luau music playing in the background!
11. Blue Hawaiian
You’ve added your pineapple and coconut ingredients to a ton of dishes, but you can also throw them into a tropical drink.
This blue Hawaiian transports you right onto the island where the waves crash along the shore and the sand feels warm under your feet.
The only thing you need now is a small umbrella to put at the rim of your drink.
This is a classic Hawaiian dish that you might not have even realized because the flavors go well in any culture.
The creamy noodles in this macaroni salad are the perfect companion to a nice piece of bbq meat.
Just make sure that you make enough for the entire party because this dish is so refreshing and light that people can’t seem to stop eating it.
This dish uses a good amount of mayo so if you’re looking to cut down on the calories, you can sub out some Greek yogurt or vegan mayo instead.
If you’re a fan of rice pudding and you haven’t tried out this recipe before, then it’s time to put on your cooking hat.
This sweet rice is packed with pineapple juice and coconut so you get that tropical taste, but it’s still sweet because of the brown sugar.
It’s a great treat to have in between meals or as a snack right before bed.
These tacos are absolutely worth every last minute you spend making them.
The infusion of flavors is unique and special to Hawaii with the pineapples, chicken, onion, and bell peppers.
It’s like a luau is happening right in your mouth!
To really take these tacos over the edge you can whip up some delicious sauce to go with them that’s filled with garlic, soy sauce, pineapple juice, honey, and even a little ginger.
The tortilla is also a really nice addition and you could even handroll your own tortillas to make them that much more authentic.
15. Hawaiian Rolls
These are a classic Hawaiian bread and they go well with practically anything.
They have a slightly sweeter taste than most rolls but you can still slather it in butter and go to town.
You could also use them as a base for making mini sandwiches too.
There’s a good chance you’ve had some ham and cheese sliders before but you probably didn’t know they could have this many flavors!
These sliders can make for a great afternoon snack, an early breakfast, dinner, or even lunch.
You start with the classic ham and cheese but then you’ll add in some Hawaii to the mix by throwing on pineapple slices, dijon mustard, brown sugar, and garlic powder into the recipe.
And, of course, what better bread to use than some classic Hawaiian rolls to give it that authentic flavor?
The end result is a warm and soft sandwich with perfectly melted cheeses and wonderful flavor.
You may think that you know all there is to know about donuts, but you haven’t tried these passionfruit donuts.
Everyone knows stuffed donuts are much better than the ones with holes in them and this recipe is overflowing with delicious creamy filling.
This is basically passion fruit curd with a sugar-coated dough on the outside and they are irresistible.
If you want a dish that has all the tropical flavors of Hawaii and will fill up the whole family, you should consider this haystacks recipe.
The ingredients can be overwhelming when you first see them, but once you start making the dish you’ll realize it’s really not that difficult to make.
Most of the time is focusing on your chicken and getting a really tasty sauce to smother it in.
The rest of the time will just be chopping veggies that you can add on top of your chicken when it’s ready to go.
The soft and tender texture goes perfectly with the crisp Asian noodles you’ll throw on top.
You can have a healthy and delicious dessert that’s jammed-packed with flavor with this Hawaiian fruit salad recipe.
Not only is it pretty to look at but this side tastes just as good, especially with the classic Hawaiian flavors like pineapples and coconut.
20. Coconut Syrup
If you ever make the trip to Hawaii, you’ll notice there are a bunch of coconut trees all around.
The Hawaiians were masters at using the coconut in a variety of ways and this coconut syrup is one way they were able to sweeten up their meals.
This won’t take you hardly any time to make and it doesn’t need a ton of ingredients either.
What you’ll end up with is a syrup that you can use for practically anything. From waffles to pancakes to cookies, this syrup goes with just about anything.
21. Shoyu Chicken
This tender and delectable treat is packed with so much flavor you’ll be kicking yourself for not trying it before.
This one has its roots mainly in Japan, but the Hawaiians make it just as good as anyone.
You’ll have a wonderful umami profile on this dish with the shoyu, sugar, garlic, and ginger ingredients.
You’ll know you cooked it right when the outer layer should be nice and crispy while the inside is tender and juicy.
Hawaii has some delicious meals, but when you go there you absolutely have to try some of their tropical drinks.
In fact, you could make your own right in your kitchen with this Hawaiian berry smoothie recipe.
This has all the delicious fruits and tropical flavors rolled up into one drink.
Who can deny the mix of mangoes, oranges, bananas, yogurt, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and cherries?
With a spoonful of yogurt and vanilla protein powder to the mix and you’ll have a smoothie, you’ll want to sip on all day long.
Make an entire blender because you will definitely go through it all and keep the extras in the fridge.
Just keep it away from the rest of the family because it will go fast!
23. Spam Fried Rice
You’ll probably be surprised to know that Hawaiians eat a ton of spam and use it pretty creatively in their recipes.
This spam fried rice might not immediately grab your attention, but you have to give it at least one try.
Throw in a little spicy Sriracha sauce to give it some extra kick.
24. Hawaiian Oatmeal
This is a great breakfast oatmeal you can make when you’re tired of those same old flavors time and time again.
You still have the classic creamy oats, but this time you’ll throw some coconut shredding on top with some small slices of pineapple.
The flavor is just as special as it is delicious and it’s a great way to sweeten up your breakfast without adding a ton of sugar.
25. Kalua Pork
You haven’t really had Hawaiian food until you’ve tried some kalua pork.
This is the classic dish served at luaus because the pig will often roast all day over an open fire and then they shred the meat to make this kalua pork recipe.
Luckily, you don’t have to create your own fire pit to make this dish. Use the slow cooker and the ingredients in this recipe and you’ll have your own luau right in your home.
Coleslaw is a great side to make when you have some heavy and savory meals for dinner.
The light creamy refreshing taste really balances out all the rich flavor.
This Hawaiian version is perfect to mix up into your usual side dish rotation because it’s got a little brown sugar and pineapple mixed into it.
You’ll still get that classic Hawaiian sweet and tangy flavor but with the crisp and light coleslaw cabbage.
This is a delicious dessert bar that is sure to be a hit at your next get-together.
Passion fruit isn’t used very commonly here in the US, but on tropical islands like Hawaii, it’s a treat locals look forward to.
The islands are filled with passion fruit or lilikoi, and they’ve used it to perfection in this dessert fruit bar.
You’ll have all the classic baked dessert ingredients like sugar, butter, and eggs, but you’ll throw in some lilikoi juice to bring out all the flavor.
27+ Easy Hawaiian Recipes (+Mai Tai Cocktail)
- 3/4 oz. orange curacao
- 1.5 oz. white rum
- 1/2 oz. orgeat
- 3/4 oz. fresh lime juice
- 1/2 oz. dark rum
- Mint leaves and lime wedges for garnish
- Shake all of the ingredients lightly in a cocktail shaker using crushed ice.
- Garnish with mint leaves and lime.
Organize all the required ingredients.
Enjoy the food.