If you’re dreaming of a tropical vacation, transport yourself to an island with one of these Hawaiian or Hawaiian inspired recipes. It will hold you over until you’re ready to plan that trip.
Since I grew up in Vietnam, I’m drawn to familiar tropical flavors like coconut, guava, pineapple, and many more. So naturally, I fell in love with Hawaii the very first time we visited. Everything from the food to the people, to the slower pace of life, it’s a dream!
I was lucky enough to have the chance to work on Oahu for 3 months, visited Maui twice, and Kauai once. But it’s simply never enough, and I have to bring all those flavors home with me in these tropical Hawaiian recipes.
The easiest way to get your fix of Hawaii is in this Haupia or coconut pudding recipe. It is made with just a few ingredients, and the star is coconut milk.
Do you buy boxes of chocolate covered macadamia nuts whenever you travel to Hawaii for souvenirs? How many do you give away and how many do you keep for yourself? Or should I ask how many made it home untouched? Well, they’re so easy to make you can pretend you just came back home from a very recent trip!
This Hawaiian butter mochi is probably the most popular Hawaiian dessert recipe on the blog. It’s seriously so good, you won’t even miss the ones you can get straight from the islands!
This gorgeous gem of a cookie recipe adds tropical touches to your favorite jam thumbprint cookies with coconut flakes and guava jam.
Everyone loves King’s Hawaiian dinner rolls, right? I know we love them at our house. We could eat those by the packages. But have you tried making them yourself? It’s a fun and delicious weekend project and they’re perfect for Sunday dinner!
I absolutely love Honolulu shortbread cookies, especially the mini ones with chocolate chips that come in a package. They’re quite dangerous because I can probably munch through a whole bag in one sitting. I made these chocolate chip shortbread cookies to curb my craving for those, and I added macadamia nuts to them!
When we were on Maui during one of our trips, we stopped by a little bakery and got these amazing Hawaiian kitchen sink cookies that had everything in it: chocolate chips, oats, coffee, nuts, everything! These big island cookies are my recreation of those delicious cookies and I hope they will transport you to the island.
I actually got the pineapple mold for these truffles while we were visiting one of the islands. I think it was Kauai at that time. I knew I would have some use for it at some point, and these pineapple truffles were born.
Do you love almond croissants? These macadamia coconut croissants are the tropical version of those. The filling is made with macadamia nuts and coconut instead of almond. You can make them with homemade croissants or store-bought. They are amazing!
Ok, so another tropical twist on a classic recipe, this time the cinnamon rolls. These tropical cinnamon buns are made like a cinnamon roll but with a tropical filling of macadamia nuts and coconut. They are out of this world!
#11. Coconut Truffles
Super simple and oh so delicious! These 3-ingredient coconut truffles are as easy as it gets without compromising on your dessert happiness.
#12. Tropical Rugelach
So you noticed how much I like a tropical twist on a classic treat. Let’s transform the already delicious rugelach into something even more amazing with a filling of tropical fruit butter, macadamia nuts, and coconut.
This tropical cake is like a coffee cake that just came home after a week-long vacation on the island and it’s already decided it needs to move back there, stat!
Just like the Hawaiian butter mochi but with chocolate. These chocolate mochi are just as rich and delicious as the original version but perfect for chocolate and brownie lovers!
Back to more shortbread because if you’ve been to a Hawaiian grocery store, you’ll know they have shortbread of all flavors. I have a lot more recipes for shortbread, but I want to highlight these coconut shortbread cookies because you’ll go coco-nuts for them, I promise!
#16. Guava Popsicles
Fresh guava is hard to come by so we planted a guava tree in the backyard, but it’s probably going to take 5 – 10 years to see the fruit of our labor. In the meantime, using guava nectar to make these easy guava popsicles will have to do.
Ah, french toast is for sure one of my favorite breakfast treats. And of course, I’ll have to add a little tropical twist with coconut milk in this french toast casserole.
You will find this tart nowhere else on the interweb my friends. You’re in for a treat with the sweet pineapple and the creamy coconut frangipane. Please make it because this exquisite tart needs to be eaten!
#19. Jello Cheesecake
For the longest time, I had no idea where this recipe came from. It’s something my husband’s grandma always made to take to parties for years and years. And then we found something so similar when we visited Hawaii! That laid to rest our question of this recipe’s origin.
#20. Surfer Granola
The recipe for this granola was inspired by a small nut and granola shop we visited while on one of the islands. It’s super easy to throw together. You can eat it by the handful as a snack, top your yogurt or chia pudding with it, or add some in your cereal bowl for an extra helping of Aloha.
Bonus: Pineapple Dog Treats
Last but not least, you can’t leave your fur kids out, let them join in the fun with these tropical pineapple dog treats. Just 4 simple ingredients to make, you don’t have to cut them into the pineapple shape but you’ll get extra points for it, Sriracha and Mochi told me so!
If you make any of these Hawaiian recipes, please let me know! Leave a comment, send me a photo, rate it and don’t forget to tag me @wildwildwhisk on Instagram. I’d love to see what’s cooking up in your kitchen. Cheers!