July 22, 2021

Hawaiian Traditions: Food Trucks & Fruit Stands

Oahu, Hawaii

Did you know food trucks and fruit stands are HUGE in Hawaii!? And, for good reason. As we explored Hawaii, we were surrounded by endless options for quick, delicious bites to eat. Traditions in Hawaii are so cool, and I loved learning about them. It’s actually one of my favorite parts about traveling. I love being immersed in different cultures and learning about traditions that go back generations. 

Hawaiian Tradition of Food Trucks 

During the 1970s, the first Hawaii food trucks debuted. The crowds would yell, “the Manapua Man is here” as they passed by these trucks on the streets of Honolulu and beyond. Char siu bao, a steamed bun packed with barbecued pork, is known in the area as manapua. There were also options of fried noodles, burgers, hot dogs, and a variety of dumplings to choose from. Interestingly enough, the phrase “Manapua Man” is still used today to describe any mobile device, such as a food truck.

Today, Hawaiian food trucks are just as popular as they were decades ago. However, they’ve progressed from just serving noodles and dumplings. Now, you can find menus that include fried shrimp, tender brisket, acai bowls, and much more. Hawaiian food trucks now pride themselves on offering such diverse menus. Many food trucks have grown in popularity to the point where they have actually established permanent residences and have become tourist attractions in their own right. Super cool!

Food Trucks & Fruit Stands

Throughout the island, there are tons of delicious food trucks and fresh fruit stands. Another plus is that because there are so many, there are options for everyone in your group. From fish, chicken, and ribs to donuts and coffee. They have everything you could ever want. 

Out of all the food trucks we stopped at, I have to say the Mexican food truck had to be my favorite. Everything was so good and fresh. Because they are so popular, you can always expect fresh food with great flavor. The donuts we got were also delicious. I mean look at the lineup in the picture below… so good!

Overall Experience

We had such a great time hopping from truck to truck. Being able to order something small from each truck was so nice because we really got to try everything. I absolutely love this Hawaiian tradition. The atmosphere, food, and the people were all so fun! It’s also cool because while indulging in delicious food or snacks, you can also support small business owners in Hawaii, who really work hard to deliver quality food. I highly recommend checking out a few food trucks and fruit stands when on your next Hawaiian vacation! Check out more Hawaiian adventures at Big Guy Big World!

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Big Guy Big World is a travel blog, following Mark Jacoby’s journey as a big guy on a bigger journey, exploring the world during a global pandemic. Follow along as we experience some of the world’s most beautiful and exotic places.

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