Where To Eat on Oahu

If you’re looking for where to eat on Oahu, I’ve got you covered. Read on for Hawaiian-flavor goodness.

Note: Due to staffing shortages, many restaurants have had to adjust their hours and close last minute.

Getting To Oahu

Oahu is the easiest Hawaiian island to get to. Honolulu International Airport (HNL) is Hawaii’s major airport and it serves at the entry point for most Hawaiian visitors.


The capital of Hawaii, Honolulu is also the largest city in the state. There you’ll find excellent shopping and d mining. Honolulu stretches across the southeastern shore of Oahu and is home to the world-famous Waikiki Beach.

Wasabi Bistro For Sushi

Wasabi Bistro is the coolest pool-side restaurant I’ve seen. Located on the Breakers Hotel property, it serves traditional Japanese food with a modern island twist. The building is a hidden gem. It’s a small, quaint building decorated with minimalist Japanese decor. I loved the ambiance.

I am a huge sushi lover, and I was blown away by the quality of the food at Wasabi Bistro.

The waiter recommended the Hamachi Wasabi Carpaccio, and when I took my first bite, it was my first sign that the fish was going to be fresh and the flavors were going to be on point.

Hamachi Wasabi Carpaccio at Wasabi Bistro

Their Papaya Seafood Motoyaki filled with shrimp, scallops and vegetables baked motoyaki sauce($18) is likely something that you’ve never had the likes of. Dig into that papaya and enjoy spoonfuls of it with the seafood.

Papaya Seafood Motoyaki at Wasabi Bistro in Waikiki

Their rolls are simple (traditional Japanese style) but yet fresh and flavorful.

Maguro Spot for Poke in Waikiki

If you’re looking for good, affordably priced sushi on Waikiki, this is it. It’s just a couple of blocks from the beach. They can get pretty crowded, so try to go during off-hours if possible. It’s a little take-out spot, with an order-up widow and some outdoor seating. They have 3 sizes of bowls, and toppings are additional.

Maguro Spot in Waikiki
my delicious tuna poke bowl from Maguro Spot

Waiola Shave Ice for the Smoothest Shave Ice You’ll Ever Eat

passionfruit, orange, guava

I am not typically a fan of shave ice. Why? Because in many cases, it feels like ice with a bunch of syrup at the bottom. Waiola is a completely different experience.

It is so smooth and absolutely will melt in your mouth. They have a huge variety of flavors to choose from.

Although I prefer good ol’ ice and syrup, some may want to get a snow cap (condensed milk) or ice cream for an added treat.

I have heard some comments that they don’t add enough syrup because it’s not left at the bottom of the cup. But, that’s the beauty of the fine shave ice. The ice soaks in the syrip, vs it just dropping directly to the tomorrow of the cup. It’s not SUPPOSED to be at the bottom. It’s supposed to be IN. THE. ICE.

And at Waiola’s, it is.

Tip: In Hawaii, it’s “shave” ice, not “shaved” ice.

Leonard’s Bakery for Delicious Warm Malasadas

Leonard’s Bakery

Malasadas are Portuguese donuts, and they’re very popular in Hawaii.

I grew up eating filhos, which are flatter. As I am Portuguese, I know that there are differing opinions on what the malasada is. I think it’s NOT the same as filhos. Some people use it interchangeably. Either way, am a much bigger fan of the malasada (I’ll go with the opinion that they’re different because in my opinion they really are). “Malasada” means undercooked, or improperly cooked. And the malasada is a donut without a hole in the middle, that is doughy, what some might say is undercooked.

And it’s delicious. Leonards is the top spot for malasadas on the island. The line is often extremely long and wrapped around the building.

They have plain “original” malasadas or filled. I may get pushback on this one, but I say go with the original non-filled version. In my opinion, that’s how you can taste the true flavor of the malasada and enjoy it properly.

Diamond Head Market & Grill for A Large Variety of Takeout Options

This place will cost you a fraction of the prices on Waikiki and has a wide variety of options. You can order at the takeout window outside or you can go inside to pick out some of their prepackaged meals or delicious scones, which they’re known for. Their blueberry cream cheese scone is a must-try. It is so deliciously moist that it was just as good the next day. Heat it up for 30 seconds in the microwave on the way out. Warning, it’s huge.

blueberry cream cheese scone from Diamond Head Market & Grill

Da Ono Hawaiian Foods for Authentic Hawaiian Food

If you’re looking for authentic Hawaiian food, Da Ono is your spot. I am much more of a seafood person than pork, but when in Hawaii…. (do both, right?).

Since you’re there, looking for authentic food, you should probably try the pork dishes. And if you’re going to try the pork decisions, you have to try the lau lau. It’s made out of a fatty pork and salted butterfish (and sometimes sweet potato) and then wrapped in lu’au leaves and ti leaves. It’s usually served with chili water that you pour over the entire thing.

This is a no-frills, family-owned spot.

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If you’re looking for poke and want to get away from the Waikiki area, Ono Seafood is your best bet. It’s a local favorite. The tuna is pre-mixed (but very fresh!)

In the mainland, the “poke bowl” has become extremely popular. We take tuna, mix it with a variety of sauces, and put it on top. of a bowl of rice, and finish it off with various toppings.

While bowls can be found in Hawaii (especially for mus tourists!), typically Hawaiian poke is purchased by the pound (pre-mixed) and eaten straight, with rice on the side.

Get your pound of poke here. You can also get a “poke bowl”, but it’s going to come Hawaiian style with poke and rice, without that wide variety of toppings that you may be used to. Embrace the Hawaiian way, and savor the flavors of that fresh poke.

They do run out of certain options, so if you know what you want, don’t wait until late in the day.

Tip: It’s a 10 minute walk from Leonards. Park, get your poke, and then your malasadas.

Farmers Markets

There are various farmers markets on the island where you can find not only fresh local fruits and vegetables, but a wide variety of fresh breads, desserts, coffee, acai bowls, and traditional Hawaiian foods.

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