Recipes for a Tropical-Impressed Plate Lunch: Hawaiian Rooster, Hawaiian Mac Salad, Coconut Rice, and Cucumber and Carrot Salad

This Hawaii-inspired meal continues to be one among our favorites. Strive it someday!

Hello, buddy! For those who’ve been hanging with me right here at MBB for some time, you may already know that my husband (the notorious El Hub!) is from Oahu in Hawaii, and we attempt to go to after we can to see our household.

We had journeys deliberate for this yr to have fun some massive birthdays for the grandparents, however, as you recognize, “The ‘Rona” was like “HAHAHAAAAAA,” so we haven’t been capable of make it again shortly. Hopefully, earlier than later although (fingers and toes crossed).

We’ve been lacking Hawaii a fantastic deal currently, so I’ve been making this Hawaiian lunch plate-inspired meal to assist us really feel a bit extra related to the islands.

hawaiian chicken plate side

A Hawaiian lunch plate usually has a scoop of rice, a scoop of candy and tangy macaroni salad, a protein of some sort (like spam or teriyaki hen) and a facet of veggies. El Hub grew up consuming them, and I’m all about ’em now too.

Granted, the plate lunches that I, an SF Bay Space woman, make right here in all probability received’t be thought-about “genuine” (air quotes) by Hawaiian lunch plate culinary die-hard requirements, my household actually likes them. Babygirl says this one has “the yummiest hen ever,” and El Hub has put in quite a lot of requests for this dish during the last month.

hawaiian chicken with sauce
A little bit candy, a bit salty, and every kind of yum!

The protein on this meal is a pineapple and soy sauce marinated Hawaiian hen, which I cooked in my On the spot Pot!

I like utilizing the On the spot Pot as a result of I can set it and overlook it, and the outcomes are persistently fan-frickin’-tastic. The hen is at all times tender and bursting with taste.

If you’re culinarily-inclined, you would in all probability adapt it to a stovetop or a grill, however I haven’t tried both of these but. However critically, the On the spot Pot is a foolproof instrument for me, in order that’s what I exploit for this meal.

instant pot hawaiian chicken
My much-loved On the spot Pot!

I serve the hen with coconut rice, a creamy Hawaiian mac salad (normally with no matter pasta form I can discover!) and a Thai-inspired cucumber and carrot salad, and once I posted a pic of it some time again right here, there have been fairly a couple of requests for the recipes…

So, right here they’re under! Take pleasure in.


Tender, juicy hen cooked in an On the spot Pot! Candy pineapple completely balances with the soy sauce sauce, ginger and garlic on this simple, kid-friendly dish.

  • Prep time: quarter-hour
  • Prepare dinner time: 45 minutes
  • Whole-ish time: 4-8 hours, relying on how lengthy you marinade the hen
  • Yield: 6 servings


  • 2-3 kilos boneless, skinless hen thighs or tenders (I exploit a mixture of 1 pound thighs and 1 pound tenders)
  • 1 cup pineapple juice
  • 1 cup low-sodium soy sauce (I used gluten-free Tarmari)
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
  • 6 cloves finely minced garlic (or 1 teaspoon garlic powder)
  • 1/2 cup of low-sodium hen broth or water


Marinate the hen:

  1. Place the hen thighs and/or tenders in a shallow dish or in a gallon-size plastic bag.
  2. Whisk collectively the pineapple juice, soy sauce, brown sugar, ginger and garlic till the brown sugar is dissolved (or largely dissolved); then divide it in half.
  3. Pour half the marinade over the hen within the bag so the hen is evenly coated. Seal the bag and refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours, or as much as 24 hours.
  4. Refrigerate the remaining marinade till the hen is able to be cooked.

Prepare dinner the hen within the On the spot Pot:

  1. Once you’re able to cook dinner the hen, place the trivet into the underside of the On the spot Pot, and layer the hen on high evenly. Pour in a single cup of the marinade from the bag, after which a 1/2 cup of broth or water. Prepare dinner on Handbook at excessive stress for 12-14 minutes, do a 10-minute pure steam launch, after which a fast launch.
  2. You’ll be able to take away the trivet and shred the hen instantly within the pot to combine into the juices in order for you. Or, you possibly can take them out and shred them outdoors of the pot and the juice. I normally take the hen out, shred it, then high it with the sauce, however actually it’s as much as you!

Make the sauce:

  1. Deliver the refrigerated reserved marinade to a simmer in a small saucepan on the range. Simmer for 5-10 minutes (the longer it simmers, the extra decreased and barely thickened will probably be). Spoon it on high of the hen and/or rice when serving.

hawaiian chicken marinade ingredients

hawaiian chicken marinade
You may as well use floor garlic and ginger when you’re in a rush


Crunchy, tangy and only a contact candy! This simple cucumber salad tastes identical to one thing you’d discover at your favourite Thai restaurant. I customise ours to swimsuit my four-year-old daughter’s palate, however I’ve added choices under when you’d prefer to dial up the stronger flavors.

  • Prep time: quarter-hour
  • Prepare dinner time: 5 minutes
  • Whole time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings


  • 1 pound persian cucumbers, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup shredded carrots
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Elective: 1/4 cup recent cilantro, 1/4 cup pink thinly sliced pink onion, and 1/3 cup chopped peanuts


  1. Place peeled and sliced cucumbers in a colander, and sprinkle salt over them.
  2. Toss the cucumbers to coat them with the salt, and let sit for 10 minutes.
  3. Gently blot the cucumber slices dry with a paper towels.
  4. In a small bowl, combine the rice vinegar and sugar. Microwave for about 30 seconds till sugar is dissolved.
  5. In a big bowl, place the cucumbers and carrots, pour the rice vinegar and sugar combination excessive, and stir to mix.
  6. Elective: at this level, be at liberty to combine within the cilantro and sliced pink onion as effectively.
  7. Cowl and refrigerate for 20 minutes, or as much as 24 hours.
  8. For those who’re utilizing peanuts, sprinkle them on simply earlier than serving.
cucumber carrot salad
This cucumber carrot salad provides crunch and texture to the meal.

cucumber carrot salad ingredients


A creamy, candy and tangy salad with some crunch. This can be a staple on a typical Hawaiian lunch plate. You’ll be able to simply customise this salad to make it your personal by including onions, your favourite proteins (eggs or hen can be good!), or possibly even some diced, cooked potato. Completely as much as you. After I make it for our household, I omit the uncooked onions as a result of in any other case my child received’t contact the stuff, however I’ve added choices under when you want punchier flavors.

  • Prep time: half-hour
  • Prepare dinner time: 10 minutes
  • Whole time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings


  • 1 8-oz field of pasta (macaroni is nice, however spirals work too! As a result of El Hub has Celiac and is gluten-free, I exploit Banza Pasta)
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup mayonnaise, divided (I used mild mayo)
  • 1 cup entire milk, divided
  • 1/2 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt, plus further for cooking the pasta
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup shredded carrot
  • 1 cup minced celery
  • Elective: 5-7 inexperienced onions, sliced skinny


  1. Generously salt a big pot of water, convey to a boil, and cook dinner your previous in response to the directions on the field. Drain, return to the pot and toss with the vinegar. Let cool for 10 minutes.
  2. In a big bowl, whisk collectively 1/2 cup of the mayonnaise and three/4 cup of the milk till totally integrated. Then, combine within the brown sugar, salt and pepper.
  3. Toss the cooled pasta into the mayo/milk combination, and let come to room temperature (I normally wait about 15-20 minutes).
  4. As soon as cool, fold within the carrot and celery. For those who’re utilizing the inexperienced onions, you possibly can add them at this level. Whisk the remaining mayonnaise and milk, pour over the salad, and toss effectively to coat. Add further salt and pepper to style.
  5. Chill within the fridge till the pasta is chilly.
hawaiian mac salad
Creamy, tangy and scrumptious


Evenly candy and fluffy, this coconut rice is the right addition to your Asian-inspired dishes. Lengthy grain rice like Basmati and Jasmine work finest; nonetheless, I’ve used brief grain rice in a pinch, and though it’s “technically” edible, it’s very gluey and gummy, so I wouldn’t advocate it. Additionally, I want to make use of the full-fat model of the coconut milk as a result of the fam-bam likes the richer taste, however you possibly can substitute it with mild when you’d like.

  • Prep time: 5 minutes
  • Prepare dinner time: 25
  • Whole time: 30
  • Yield: 6 servings


  • 1 1/2 cups jasmine or basmati rice
  • 1 can coconut milk, common or mild
  • 1 1/4 cup hen broth
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse, kosher salt


  1. Mix the rice, coconut milk, broth and salt in a big pan.
  2. Deliver to a delicate boil over medium warmth, stirring once in a while to stop the rice from sticking to the underside of the pan.
  3. Scale back the warmth to low, then place a canopy on the pot, and cook dinner for 16 minutes.
  4. Flip off the warmth, depart the pot lined (don’t carry up the lid!), and let it sit on the range for 10 minutes.
  5. Fluff with a fork when you’d like, then serve.
coconut rice ingredients
The beginning of one thing yummy!

coconut rice overview

Aloha and luxuriate in!

Your pleasant neighborhood magnificence addict,


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