You have never truly visited Hawaii unless you have eaten your way through the islands. With robust farms and greenery, mother nature harvests her best flavors in the aloha state. From exotic fruits, to new takes on classics, and international influences, Hawaii is one of the best places on earth to visit to send your taste buds on a culinary journey. To celebrate the flavors of the island, we have gathered our top five flavors to try on your next Hawaiian vacation.
- Made from taro, poi is a classic Hawaiian culinary staple. Poi is produced by mashing the cooked corm of taro on a papa ku’I’ai, a wooden pounding board, and then eaten together with lomi lomi salmon or kalua pork. It is typically served cold or at room temperature and eaten with your fingers, though visitors are welcome to use a spoon.
Taro Ko Farm Chips
- These handmade chips found in the must-see historic town of Hanapepe are a rarity. The chips are made in a small shop and hand-crafted from taro root providing a deep savory flavor. The shop also makes sweet potato and regular potato chips, which truly you cannot go wrong with any of the varieties. They are first-come, first-served and when they are out of chips for the day, they close shop. So, get there early and buy enough to last you a day or two.
- A staple for any visit to the islands is a poke bowl but you have not really tried poke unless you have explored all its variations. To truly get an understanding of Hawaiian poke you must step outside of the typical ahi dish and explore other options such as salmon, hee (octopus) or eel and top it with Hawaiian sea salt, seaweed, shoyu, tofu, garlic and ginger. Mix and match and explore a new way to enjoy this iconic dish.
Snowcapped shaved ice
- This is not your every day shaved ice. Hawaiian shaved ice is a frozen treat for all the senses. A bowl of this frosty goodness comes generously topped with fruits like pineapple, coconut and strawberries and drenched with locally sourced syrups. Then to complete this sugary snack, it is topped off with ice cream. Those looking for a more exotic approach can add Japanese red beans or mochi balls.
Loco Moco with fried rice
- We could not mention Hawaiian dishes without sharing a celebrated comfort dish. This dish features a bed of white rice topped with hamburger patties, fried eggs, and then drenched in brown gravy. Known to cause a kanak attack, or need to nap, this breakfast dish will leave you full and satisfied.