Cheap Eats on Maui
Yes, there ARE cheap eats on Maui! Places where you can dine out and actually have some $$$ left over! Maui boasts a wide array of great restaurants, but eating out can be expensive here. If you’re looking for inexpensive places to eat on Maui, here are some suggestions—eateries that I have found to be reliable for good food at low prices. This is not meant to be a complete list of every inexpensive eatery on Maui. . .these are just a few of my favorites around the island. So explore, and you’ll find many others!
My criteria for “cheap eats on Maui:” $8 or less for breakfast or lunch and under $15 for dinner. The focus of this blog is on good-tasting food at low prices, not necessarily on great ambiance, stellar customer service, or the healthiest food choices. (Prices listed below were correct at the time I last updated this blog.)
NOTE: This blog was updated in January 2022, but due to the continuing impacts of COVID-19, some of the businesses mentioned here could possibly change their operations, menu, or prices. Please check with these places directly to verify their operating status and prices. Mahalo!
Costco is the hands-down winner for cheap eats on Maui. Nothing else comes close. My husband and I had dinner there recently for under $4. Yes, dinner for TWO for under $4. On Maui!!! A jumbo hot dog for him, large slice of pizza for me, and a 20 oz. drink (included in the $1.50 price of the hot dog and plenty big enough for two to share). Total bill came to a whopping $3.64 including tax. Then we shared a berry sundae for dessert, which brought our dinner grand total to $6.23. Costco has a very limited menu, but the servings are substantial, the food is tasty, and not much on the menu is over $5 (unless you order an entire pizza). On Maui, the Costco dining area is located outside the entrance to the store. (Kahului)
This popular local Hawaii chain restaurant features a menu-style coffee shop, as well as a “fast food” dining section. On Maui, I recommend the latter for good, inexpensive local food. Zippy’s is particularly known for its great chili (pictured at top), which is traditionally served over white rice in Hawaii. No one does chili-and-rice better than Zippy’s (about $6 a bowl). But there are lots of other great inexpensive options for lunch and dinner. Some of our favorites: Fried Noodles, Saimin, and Chicken Katsu.
Zippy’s is also home to one of the best bakeries on the island (Napoleon’s Bakery), and they are famous for their Napples – melt-in-your-mouth flaky pastry turnovers with various fruit fillings, like apple, coconut, or blueberry. Save room for a Napple! (Kahului)
COCONUTS FISH CAFE
Coconuts usually has a line out the door for its fish tacos, but they have lots of other meal options, as well, with nearly everything priced under $15. Salads, soups, sandwiches, local lunch/dinner plates – all really good food and generous servings. The fish tacos (pictured) are served open-face and are delicious. One order includes two large tacos for $13.99 (two orders are pictured here), and just one taco is a meal in itself, so one order can feed two people if you’re not ravenous. A great value! (2 Locations in Kihei, Plus a Food Truck)
The historic Honolua Store (near the Ritz Carlton hotel) offers a great deli-style eatery for casual eat-in or take-out meals. Breakfasts average around $7 to $10, including yummy banana pancakes (priced a little over $10). And for lunch there is a wide range of burgers and sandwiches with most prices ranging from $8 to $12. This place doesn’t precisely meet my $8 cheap-eats criteria for breakfast/lunch, but these are bargain prices for the high-end Kapalua Resort area! (Kapalua)
Places to stay in Kapalua.
OTHER CHEAP EATS ON MAUI
MAUI FOOD TRUCKS
There are MANY great food trucks scattered all over the island, including a group of them clustered in two separate lots across the street from Costco in Kahului. Hours vary from truck to truck — and many run out of their specialties by mid-afternoon, so they will close early. Check prices carefully before you order. Some food trucks offer low prices and true “cheap eats.” Others are more gourmet, and they are not priced at bargain rates. But overall, Maui’s food trucks offer great food, value and convenience.
Also keep your eyes open for roadside huli huli chicken stands. You’ll see the signs. These are often fundraisers for churches or schools, featuring whole chickens with a teriyaki-style glaze grilled on huge open-air rotisseries. (Huli means “turn” in Hawaiian.) Huli huli chicken is an island favorite. Pick one up for dinner!
MAUI FOOD COURTS & STORE DELIS
Many of Maui’s shopping centers feature food courts with a selection of fast-food outlets—some are familiar national chains (like Subway) and some are local homegrown eateries (like Maui Tacos). If you’re looking for fast and cheap, food courts are the way to go. The largest on the island (pictured) is at Queen Kaahumanu Center in Kahului (located on the 2nd level, front center of the mall). Other good food courts can be found at Piilani Shopping Center (on the upper highway in Kihei, by Safeway) and Whalers Village in Kaanapali.
Another great option for cheap eats: local grocery stores. Many of them offer deli sections and food counters with delicious prepared items for take-out, and some (Whole Foods and certain Safeway locations) offer buffet bars with a wide variety of foods for you to serve yourself, box them up, and take away. (These buffets have been temporarily suspended due to COVID restrictions.) Don’t overlook Maui’s grocery stores for some quick and yummy cheap eats!
DINING COUPONS AND DISCOUNTS
When you are visiting Maui, check out the local newspapers for current advertised specials and coupons at local eateries. There are often some great deals at Maui’s top restaurants!
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