18 Hawaii Foods to Make Your Mainland Friends Try When They Visit

18 Hawaii Foods to Make Your Mainland Friends Try When They Visit

November 06, 2017

Let's talk food! The traveling experience is always enhanced by immersing yourself in the culture.  Read up on traditional Hawaiian fare and after a good paddle, indulge.

by Matthew Dekneef on hawaiimagazine.com

Your friends and extended family have their tickets to Hawaii booked and now you’re in the influential position to play host. That means aside from showing them tucked-away beaches and a cool scenic hike, you’ll also need to guide them towards satisfying places to eat.

We’re sure you already have traditional malasadas, Spam musubis, a gigantic-sized plate lunch, shave ice, poke and that real Hawaiian food joint you swear by written on the itinerary. Beyond those staples, here are a few more unique eats across the Islands that are also little adventures in their own right.

1. Manapua

HAWAI‘I Magazine

Meet Hawaii’s version of the char siu bao—steamed or baked buns typically filled with salty-sweet minced pork, however there are tons of savory fillings to choose from these days.

When the Chinese immigrated to the Islands to work on the plantations they brought this icon of their cuisine with them and it has surely left an impact on ours. Manapua, which is a shortened Pidgin version of the Hawaiian phrase mea ʻono puaʻa (“delicious pork pastry”), can be found across the Islands, in little hole-in-the-wall shops to street trucks.


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