Where to Eat in Kauai

If you’re planning a trip to Kauai and need recommendations for where to eat, read on!

Kauai is a paradise for beach lovers, thrill seekers, and outdoor lovers. Known as Hawaii’s “Garden Isle,” it’s far less developed than other popular locations. It is much calmer and more relaxing, with fewer tourists.  It’s home to jaw-dropping mountain landscapes, dazzling turquoise waters, white sandy beaches, sugarcane fields, and lush green vegetation. 

Photo by Ryan Miller on Unsplash

Kauai has delicious restaurants and cafes scattered all across the island. Whether you are looking for a small mom-and-pop shop or a full dining experience, Kauai has mouth-watering dishes for all tastes and flavors. 

Saimin, a classic Hawaiin noodles soup, is just one of the many local dishes that are a must-try. To help make your meal decisions easier, we’ve put together a list below of the best places to eat in Kauai.

If you’re visiting Kaui, chances are that you’re planning a stop in Oahu. It’s the easiest island to get to, and although it it much more built up and tourist, there are plenty of great eating options there.

Pono Market 

Pono Market has all of the best favorite Hawaiian dishes in one place. It’s small in size but large on flavor. There aren’t many places to eat inside. A lot of locals order takeout and go across the block to the local beach for a picnic. Whether you are looking for favorited poke or Lau Lau, poi, or other fresh seafood options, it can be found at Pono Market. Specialties change daily, but sell out very quickly. Be sure to ask for local recommendations on different combination options for different cravings. 

Wailua Drive In

Wailua Drive-In (formerly Saimi DOJO) is a perfect option for vegan eaters. In fact, it’s the only Vegan Saimin option in the entire state. While it may look and act like an average fast food restaurant, they are pros at blending true Hawaiian flavors in a bowl of deliciousness. Besides their famous vegan saimin, expect a menu of a variety of fresh salads, local favorites, fresh fish, and even a few chicken dishes for those who are prone to vegan meals. 

Konohiki Seafoods 

Konohiki Seafoods is a strip mall take-out sushi and poke place that is as local as it comes. It has top-quality ingredients and some of the best meal deals on the island. Poke bowls can be mixed and made with the ingredients of your choice, and are perfectly paired with their famous inari sushi. Create your own box of mix-and-match sushi rolls to taste a wide variety of different flavors at once. It’s very affordable but very popular. Be sure to arrive early, as many specialty items sell out quickly. 

Hamura Saimin

Hamura Saimin was opened in 1952 and is actually a historical national landmark. What is now the local favorite family-run restaurant is housed in old Army barracks. It’s best known for having some of the best saimin in Hawaii, and a legendary lilikoi chiffon pie. If you are looking for a quick bite that tastes like an authentic home-cooked meal, full of flavor, a lively atmosphere, and great service, be sure to stop by Hamura Saimin. 

Little Fish Coffee 

Little Fish Coffee is a great breakfast and lunch option in Kauai. Most famous for their acai breakfast bowls, it’s just the right amount of sweet treats and healthy food to start the day. There are other bagel and bowl options, but keep in mind, servings are rather large; even the small options. Most importantly, there are a wide variety of smoothie and coffee options with ingredients from locally sourced farms, from matcha smoothies to hot coffee blends and iced lattes, it’s definitely one of the most popular coffee stops in town. 

Poipu Food Truck Park

Poipu Food Truck Park is located across from Old Town Koloa and is home to some of the best food trucks on Kauai. It’s perfect for those looking for a wide variety of options and is a great way for everyone to get what they want in the same place. The park has outdoor dining and picnic tables to enjoy meals, and a full plate platter costs around $10 on average, depending on which option your choose. Some of the most popular trucks in the park are Kauai Poke Co and Kickshaws

Brennecke’s

Brenneckes is one of the most attractive and popular restaurants in Poipu and a must-try when visiting Kauai. Known for their delicious and high-quality seafood, we highly recommend their macadamia nut-crusted Mahi Mahi. It comes with great views and sits rights across the beach for the best Hawaain atmosphere you could ask for. Be sure to come thirsty, Brenneckes has served more than 1,000,000 Mai Tais and has some of the best blends around. Open for lunch and dinner, be sure to make reservations ahead of time as this place is busy and popular year-round. 

Dukes Kauai 

Dukes Kauai is one of the best restaurants in Kaui that comes paired with a fantastic view. Just steps away from Kalapaki Beach, Dukes Kaui is an excellent example of a fine dining Hawaain experience. Serving lunch and dinner (breakfast on Sundays) options, it blends delicious eats with great views, live music, and an authentic vibe. Be sure to try their pulled pork sandwiches and poke bowls, and delicious Hula Pie. Dukes definitely comes with flavors you can’t get anywhere else on the island and is a great place for a last-night meal before visiting Kauai. 

Whether your taste buds are craving savory seafood dishes or sweet and fruity acai treats, there’s an option for it all in Kauai. We hope you have enjoyed this list of the best places to eat in Kauai and that it has inspired you to try something new during your next visit!