11 Hawaiian pupu or appetizers that will make you want to try them all now
Food is such a big component of Hawaii dining and the start with Hawaiian pupus or appetizers sets it off so nicely with little bites that you’ll love to try. Representing a whole array of Hawaiian, early settlers to international appetizers that have quickly become part of the food vernacular, you’ll never lack for anything salty, savory, sweet or tangy with all these delicious bites. Check out all these fantastic Hawaiian pupu dishes for you to discover and enjoy when you are visiting the islands and looking for some yummy starts to your meals.
Try these delicious pupu appetizers for Pau Hana (end of day) in Hawaii
One of the most popular Hawaiian pupu is Poke. The ever-popular poke is known all over the world for raw fish chunks prepared in a variety of styles and ingredients with flavorings that cover the gamut from Asian inspired, spicy, mayo and creamy with a different condiments like seaweed, sesame seed, wasabi root, tobiko and other toppings. Poke appetizer in Hawaii is typically ready made to go from a variety of small mom and pop shops, grocery deli counters to some delicious cafes and even fine dining establishments and can be eaten as a snack ,over rice bowl or just as a side pupu dish.
A classic Hawaiian pupu snack with Chinese and Asian roots, boiled peanuts have become mainstream and a popular pupu appetizer on the islands, boiled peanuts are as simple and easy to make or buy here. Easy to make soaking the raw peanuts whole and then boiling with Hawaiian salt and serving it hot or at room temperature with your favorite beverage.
Lumpia make the most delicious pupu appetizer. A fried lumpia originating from the Philippines is always popular at a potluck or family gathering and everyone craves the hot fried goodness filled typically with pork, shrimp, veggies and rice noodles. Sauces can vary from Banana ketchup, vinegar and pepper to sweeter chili oil versions that go well with this fried snack.
Just like poke, sashimi or raw fish is always popular in any gathering with delicious sashimi grade (the best fish cuts) you can find at a fish monger, store or specialty shop. Sashimi served Japanese style with simple soyu or soy sauce, wasabi and ginger slices and typically with disposable chopsticks. It’s the perfect snack to bring along on the beach, party or even a solo takeout pupu in Hawaii.
An easy Hawaiian pupu to make or available at many restaurants as a pupu appetizer is edamame. Easy to eat and finish quicky soy beans stir fried or boiled and served in a simple sweet and sour sauce or soy sauce with vinegar and chili is popular and delicious. The pan friend version with fresh garlic and sea salt is another take that everyone loves to eat and quickly demolish a plateful in just a few seconds.
The popular musubi pupu in Hawaii is a cheap take-out food you’ll find everywhere. You can find Spam Musubi sold at farmers markets, convenience stores to grocery take out counters is Spam Musubi. This is typically sticky rice with Spam and wrapped with a layer of seaweed and sprinkled with furikake or some sesame seed and some soyu and this is a fast and satisfying snack to eat any time in the day.
Kalua Pork Sliders
A delicious pupu appetizer, Kalua pork sliders fills the spot. Kalua pork is a standard meat served at any establishment and typically a main entrée but for pupu, sliders are the absolute hearty version of an appetizer snack that can definitely tie you over in between meals or even for a nice lunch plate if you have more than a few sliders at a time.
A take off from Chinese pork buns, the Hawaiian version or manapua is typically larger with a variety of fillings from beef, pork, chicken in a savory type sauce and steamed bun that is delicious to eat when it is served nice and hot.
The Japanese version of octopus can be eaten raw and sashimi style or fresh grilled and moist on the inside. Take can also be done in a variety or ways and even served poke style depending on the taste and preparation for this delicious pupu snack.
A local version of potato chip but using taro as the root and sliced and fried to a crispy texture. Air fried versions offer a more healthy and oil less version that makes this a healthy snack to eat.
Arare Japanese crackers come in a variety of sweet, savory to spicy variations that are delicious and tasty as a snack or pupu dish especially when you get a mix of Japanese arare mixed in with nuts and even dried fruit. It’s a great pupu dish to have that doesn’t need any additional prep time to open a package and dump into a bowl and serve.
Conclusion to Hawaiian Pupus
So which of these tasty pupu snacks sound good enough to try? Please share your thoughts and comments below.
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