Garlic and Rice
January 17, 2019
| by
Maria Mancuso

Oahu Restaurants: 5 Places for Cheap & Great Eats on Oahu!

‘Cheap’ does not usually mean ‘good’, but in this case it means, ‘Delicious!’ See this short list of great Oahu Restaurants that won’t break the bank!

We all enjoy a great meal or a tasty baked treat and when you’re on vacation in Oahu…all the more reason to seek out a culinary reward.  But what about all the talk that ‘Hawaii is too expensive!’ Well there are some things that are a bit pricey on the island and some restaurants are among them, but there are a few hidden gems that are not only cheap, but they serve up some amazing food, baked goods and did we mention they are affordable?  

Below is a list of just 5 of the great spots serving up tasty and affordable dishes worthy of your time and cash.  Give one or all of them a try!

Box from Leonard's Bakery on Oahu
Leonard's Bakery serves up tasty baked treats but they are famous for their Malasadas.

Leonard’s Bakery
Cuisine: Bakery
Location: 933 Kapahulu Ave., Honolulu, HI 96816

This is the place.  Take it from us or ask any of the 2 to 3 dozen people waiting in line to enjoy the many delicious treats this Honolulu landmark has been serving since 1952, this is the place, and it is as good as you have likely read in any number of articles or reviews.  Leonard’s serves many tasty baked treats, but they are famous for their Malasadas. You are handed fresh, fried dough with your choice of sugar and a filling if you like.

Leonard’s also serves a variety of homemade cakes, pies, Pao Doce, breads and more.  Be sure to stop by Leonard’s and see for yourself that this is, indeed, the place.

Shrimp and Rice
Giovanni’s Shrimp Truck is a 'can't miss' food experience on Oahu's North Shore!

Giovanni’s Shrimp Truck
Cuisine: Shrimp Truck
Kamehameha Highway Kahuku, Honolulu, Oahu, HI 96731
Phone: 808-293-1839

When you think of eating and the North Shore of Oahu, you think of Giovanni’s.  This is not a tidy, sit down restaurant.  You will be dining outside, on picnic tables, and your plat is a paper plate or Styrofoam container and it could not be better.  The Shrimp, which is raised just down the road, is cooked in garlic butter with 2 scoops of perfectly cooked rice. 

Regardless of the day or time of your visit, there will be a line, sometimes you will be unlucky enough to arrive just as the buses, yes buses, or tourists pull up to enjoy their garlic shrimp and rice.

As with all things ‘great’, there are imitators close by and not so close by and honestly some of them are great too, but nothing beats the original.

Uncle Clay's House of Pure Aloha
Cuisine: Shave Ice
Location: 820 West Hind Drive, #116, Honolulu, HI, 96821

Phone: 808-373-5111

Whether a kama’aina (local) or visiting guest to Oahu, everyone is invited to come and celebrate the true spirit of Hawai’i as one ‘Ohana (family) at the House. Uncle Clay’s is famous for its all-natural Hawaiian Shave Ice – and it is delicious!

Steak and Chicken Plate Lunch
Steak Shack offers great Steak and Chicken dishes across from the beach!

Steak Shack
Cuisine: Plate Lunch
Location: 2161 Kalia Rd, Honolulu, HI 96815

Phone: 808-861-9966

This beachfront building puts out some amazingly great grub!  Just as the name suggests, Steak Shack serves wonderful grilled steak, chicken or steak and chicken combo and serves it over salad and rice.  Steak Shack is essentially a lunch counter right on the beachfront!  This place is affordable too – just around $10 per plate.

Stop by Steak Shack, grab a couple of combo plates and head to the beach…what a way to enjoy lunch!

Cuisine: Korean BBQ
Location: 151 Uluniu Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815

Phone: 808-926-9717

If it is Korean BBQ you desire, you are at the right place at Me BBQ. This outside eatery is not focused on décor and ambiance…but luckily, they put all their focus on serving great Korean BBQ and we could not be happier about it.  This open-air spot dishes up large portions of Korean BBQ like Kalbi and other dishes like Kalbi, Chicken Katsu, Portuguese Sausage and Eggs and other Hawaii specific dishes that are sure to satisfy.  Oh yeah, and did we mention it’s very affordable?

Oahu has many great restaurants sure to be able to satisfy any taste or budget.  Next time you visit the island, come prepared to try some new Oahu restaurants as well as some well-established eateries like those listed above!

See our Oahu Visitors Guide for more recommendations on all there is to do, see and experience during your next visit to Oahu!

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