Many people come to Maui for the luxury resorts and stunning beaches. However, there’s another important reason to visit this unique Hawaiian island… All the amazing local food in Maui! Get ready to eat everything from warm roadside banana bread to endless tropical fruits and spinning Huli Huli chicken. We also got you covered with our favorite food trucks and drinks that Maui has to offer!
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Maui Travel Inspiration
- Planning a Trip to Maui: 10 Step Easy to Follow Travel Guide
- 6 Top Things to Know Before Renting a Car on Maui Hawaii
- Maui Itinerary: How to Experience The Best of Maui in 5 Days!
- 11 Best Hikes in Maui and Leisurely Coastal Walking Trails
- 10 Road to Hana Tips to Know Before Taking Maui’s Most Famous Drive
1. Fresh Poke
We might as well start off our best food in Maui blog with one our favorite seafood treats! Typically, Poke is tuna mixed in different sauces and served over rice.
However, in Hawaii the dish is more elevated. You can find, crab, scallop, shrimp, and even octopus poke sold everywhere from fancy restaurants to take-out stands. When we were visiting Maui for a few weeks we even found great deals on poke at the grocery store!
2. Acai Bowls
Acai is a small blackberry that’s known for its high antioxidants and health benefits. The berry is frozen and blended and combined with other fruits like bananas and strawberries. This makes for a beautiful bowl of fruit that’s just as tasty as it is colorful!
These bowls often have granola on the bottom and are topped with tropical fruit and honey. You can order your acai in dozens of different variations, each better than the last!
3. Banana Bread
When cruising around the island it won’t be long before you see a small sign on the side of the road for fresh banana bread. Our first loaf was steaming hot and felt like it had just popped out of the oven. The soft bread will melt in your mouth while giving off a hint of banana flavor that isn’t too overpowering.
4. Mango Bread
While the banana bread on the island is famous make sure to also keep an eye out for Mango Bread! Soft and bursting with flavor, it makes for a perfect afternoon snack or breakfast. The best we had was from the Yee’s Orchard & Fruit Stand which you can see in our post about the farmers markets and fruit stands in Maui.
5. Spam Musubi
You can’t dive headfirst into the Maui food scene without trying spam! While the familiar blue cans may not look appetizing by themselves, Hawaiians have learned to make it better in some very creative ways.
Musubi is one of the most popular ways to eat this unique processed meat. Essentially it’s a slice of spam that is fried, topped on a small ball of rice, and wrapped in a strip of seaweed. You can eat Spam Musubi as lunch or a quick snack!
6. Maui Gold & More Local Fruits
You will quickly see an abundance of tropical fruit all over the island. However, the most internationally known is the Maui Gold Pineapple! Grown locally, these pineapples are shipped around the world for their golden centers and sweet taste.
Other treats you can find at most markets are dragon fruits, mangos, papayas, guavas, and so much more. Fruit is an integral part of the Maui food world so you’ll be eating a lot of it on your vacation!
7. Huli Huli Chicken
Some of the best food in Maui is no secret… And that’s definitely true of the famous Huli Huli chicken. Huli translates to “turn” which will make sense once you see how it’s cooked.
Chicken is marinated in a special sauce of ginger, brown cane sugar, soy sauce, and other spices. Then it’s put on the grill and heated to perfection.
There were so many times where we pulled our car over right when saw that chicken spinning! At many of the Maui food trucks, you can even get ribs and other types of BBQ done in the Huli Huli style.
These popular fried donuts are unique to Hawaii! We got ours at the Sugar Beach Bake Shop and the long line was well worth the wait.
Try to come first thing in the morning when they open and get them with an iced coffee to go. If you walk directly across the street you can enjoy your breakfast and morning Maui drinks at the beach!
9. Hawaiian Shaved Ice
Shaved ice is a popular summer treat, and they take it to the next level in Maui! There are shops that specialize in this yummy iced dessert all around the island. Made with specialty syrups, you can pick from the endless tropical flavors and create your own shaved ice.
Our favorite place we tried was Ululani’s Hawaiian Shave Ice across from the beach and Kihei Canoe Club. We highly recommend the passionfruit, mango, and coconut combo!
10. Fish & Shrimp Tacos
Some of the best Maui food trucks we found served awesome fish tacos. Like everything else on the island, the local chefs put their own Hawaiian twist on it.
We loved the tropical flavors and spicy additions on these tacos! If you’re ever over by Makena Beach State Park stop at Jazzy’s food truck for the fish tacos with mango salsa.
11. Kalua Pork
If you’ve ever seen pictures of a Hawaiian pig roast then you know this is the real deal! Kalua Pork is a famous style of BBQ that’s tender and juicy. Typically served with rice, salad, and other fixings, you won’t go hungry when having a Kalua Pork meal.
We first time we tried some was from a local farmers market. We even got a Kalua Pork pizza from the popular Outrigger Pizza Co. in Kihei!
12. Homemade Pies
Ready for something sweet?? Fortunately, for pie lovers there is a spot for you! We visited the popular Leoda’s Kitchen and Pie Shop which sells countless homemade pies from open to close. Go for the CocoMacNut or Banana Cream!
13. Maui Coffee
The coffee in Hawaii is delicious! If you’re out grabbing a cup or in the supermarket look for Maui Coffee Co. There are also many brands from the other islands such as Lion and Bad Ass to look out for. Some of our favorite mornings were spent at a cafe grabbing a cup of joe and planning out our day on the island!
14. Breweries of Maui
In the mood for some local beer? Maui has some great options! Craft beer is at most bars and restaurants, or you can head straight to the source. Our favorite breweries to try these Maui drinks are Waikiki Brewing Company, Maui Brewing Co, and Koholā Brewery!
15. Pineapple Wine
More of a wine fan? Combining wine and pineapple makes for such a sweet and refreshing drink. Enjoy some on the island or even ship it home to remember your visit with.
You can taste pineapple wine at most restaurants and find it easily at the grocery store. Also, for a one-of-a-kind wine tasting experience, head to MauiWine vineyard on the slopes of the Haleakala volcano.
Have any questions on this article or want to share your favorite local food in Maui? Leave us a comment below!
Brigitte & Jake
Where in the world are we? Follow our daily adventures on Instagram @nothingfamiliar!
Where to Stay in Maui Hawaii
For a complete look at the island check out Where to Stay in Maui: 4 Top Areas With Hotel Picks
Ultra Luxury – Four Seasons Resort Maui – Wailea – Known as one of the most elite hotels on Maui, the Four Seasons has three swimming pools, 5-star service, and is just steps from the beach.
Fun Vacation – Andaz Maui at Wailea Resort – Wailea – This modern, upscale hotel is packed with swimming pools and ocean views. You also be close to some of best local food in Maui.
Bed & Breakfast –Maui What a Wonderful World Bed & Breakfast – Wailea – Get all the local charm you can handle at this unique bed and breakfast. Awesome location that will also provide a homey welcome to the island.
Aparthotel – Napili Sunset Beach Front Resort – Lahaina – Great for travelers looking to have a little more space and a kitchen.
Hostel Life – Hakuna Matata Maui Hostel – Lahaina – Walking distance to the town center, this hostel is set in a beautiful garden. Also, Hakuna Matata offers free bikes for guests and is close to the beach.
Remote Resort – Hana Maui Resort A Destination by Hyatt – Hana – Located in the far remote part of the island along the road to Hana. Amazing resort by Hyatt offering seclusion and luxury.
For more places to stay in Maui you can explore the latest prices here!
Best Of Maui: 20 Fun Facts – Best Beaches – 25 Things to Do – Road to Hana Stops – Hawaiian Airlines Review
Maui Hikes & Walk: Kapalua Coastal Trail – Bamboo Forest – Waihee Ridge Trail – Wailea Beach Walk – Maui Lava Field
Maui Travel Planning
Flights: We always find our cheap flight deals using Skyscanner. That’s how we got our flight from San Diego to Maui for under $100 USD on Hawaiian Airlines!
Accommodation: Compare multiple sites to get to the best deal such as Booking.com and Agoda! Also, Hostelworld should be your go-to source if you’re traveling on a budget.
Rental Car: Hands down the best way to explore Maui Hawaii is with a rental car! We used Discover Cars to explore the island. Just make sure to book in advance because there are limited cars on the island in the high season!
Tours: Check out Get Your Guide to find hundreds of Maui activities. You can book a sunset sail from Lahaina, Road to Hana full day tour, or go wild and take a rainforest helicopter tour!
Travel Insurance: Never travel abroad (if you’re traveling to Hawaii from outside the USA) without protection. We’ve been using SafetyWing for the last few years on the road and they are there when we need them.
Packing Lists: Find all the inspiration you need with our Amazon packing lists. Including our electronics and camera gear, must-have medical items, and long flight essentials!
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