5 Awesome Oahu Boba Shops

One of our favorite treats is a yummy cup of boba tea. Boba tea originated in Taiwan and usually consists of a milk tea with large tapioca balls that are popular in Asian desserts. There are so many great boba spots on Oahu and we wish we could fit it all into one blog post. Maybe a part 2 is in our future?

The Alley

The Alley is a newer Boba Shop to hit Hawaii.  They have locations in California and Las Vegas.  It’s such a cute shop with a modern feel. 

They were also really organized with a screen outside and an automatic number caller to announce the order numbers that were ready for pickup. They encourage ordering online so you don’t have to wait in long lines to get your drinks.

The most popular drink on their menu is the Brown Sugar Deerioca Crème Brulee Milk.  So we had to try it!  It was really delicious and really different as it had crème brulee custard chunks inside.  The boba was fresh but slightly chewy.  

Rating: 8/10

The Alley Ala Moana (near Jamba Juice in the Nordstrom Wing)
1450 Ala Moana Blvd Suite 2805 
Honolulu, HI 96814
(808) 278-9216

Hula Boba

While cruising on the west side, we found this little gem!  Hula Boba is located in Kapolei.  It’s a super cute shop that also carries Asian snacks and goodies too!  We picked up a box of raspberry mochi to try.  

Hula Boba offers a “buffet” of toppings.  At most boba places, you pay per topping, but not at Hula Boba.  Their cups have lines for toppings.  You can put as many toppings as you want for free and if it falls under the first line.  If toppings surpass the line you pay a little extra.  Pre-covid this was self service, but due to covid, just let the employee know what you want, and they will put the toppings in for you.  They also had the best selection of toppings we’ve ever seen, with fresh honeydew and cantaloupe to choose from.  There were so much toppings that we couldn’t fit the entire selection in one photo!

We couldn’t help ourselves and ordered two drinks.  The first was a Tiger Milk Tea with Boba (Thai Iced Tea) and a Mango Black Tea with Lychee and Mango jelly!  Both were really refreshing and such a gem to find in Kapolei!

Rating: 7.5/10

Hula Boba
885 Kamokila Blvd Ste 102
Kapolei, HI 96707
(808) 693-8818

Bee & Tea

We stumbled upon another amazing Boba Shop in Kailua.  Bee & Tea is such a cute shop with tons of local charm.  The first thing that caught our eye, was the Kailua mural painted on the wall.  Such a great photo op!

The next thing that amazed us, was the creative and diverse drink menu!  They have milk teas, iced teas, lemonades, lemonade teas, boba smoothies, fresh fruit smoothies, acai bowls, and the best cookies you’ll ever eat!  The cookie was so good we forgot to take a picture of it!

We wanted to try some different items so we ordered two drinks again.  The first was something we have never seen before – a pumpkin spice milk tea!  If you like pumpkin / holiday flavors, this will definitely hit the spot!  It was so good, words can’t even explain.  *Note: We paid $2.50 extra to get the drink in a reusable light bulb cup.  We also tried a Mango Tango, which is a Jasmine Green Tea with Mango and Lychee and mango jelly.  It was really light and there was a hint of Jasmine.  We really enjoyed this a lot!

Rating: 8/10

Bee & Tea Kailua
131 Hekili St
Kailua, HI 96734
(808) 754-6890

Coffee or Tea?

Coffee or Tea is one of the oldest boba establishments on Oahu. They have been open in Hawaii since 1999 and many of their ingredients come directly from Taiwan. In addition to milk teas, they also offer smoothies, coffee, and many other desserts.

The inside is quite traditional and simple. Currently due to Covid, you are not able to sit inside. We ordered the regular brown sugar boba milk tea. What we love about Coffee or Tea is you can really taste that milk tea flavor and the sweetness is perfect. Their boba texture has the perfect balance of chewiness and softness.

Rating: 8/10

Coffee or Tea?
94-1144 Ka Uka Blvd.
Waipahu, HI 96797
(808) 676-6688

Teaspresso Bar

Teaspresso Bar loves to pride itself on having organic, fresh and local ingredients in their variety of beverages. They offer coffee, tea, smoothies, lemonade and so much more. They have so many locations in Hawaii as well as in Texas and Washington state.

The interior of Teaspresso Bar varies from location. The Wahiawa location offers a lovely mural / art installation of a cherry blossom tea with a swing. Perfect place for a photo op. We have had their regular boba teas before and wanted to try something different – their ube latte. It was so tasty and you could really taste that ube flavor.

And look – the swing is a perfect spot to get a picture of your boba tea. It’s so cute! Did we mention that Teaspresso won first place in Hawaii’s Best list of boba shops! Wow!

Rating: 9/10

Teaspresso Bar Wahiawa
834 Kilani Ave #104
Wahiawa, HI 96786
(808) 621-2233

Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas

Valentine’s Day is a day where we celebrate love.  Pinks, Reds, Hearts are the first things we think of when it comes to Valentine’s Day. With that in mind, we gathered a small collection of items that you can give your loved ones (kids, friends, and yourself included)! 

Our Happy Apron is the perfect gift for that chef in your life!  It has front pockets and adjustable straps to fit all sizes.  Red is our favorite color, but the happy apron also comes in Blue, Black, Navy and Green.  

These super cute waterproof bags are perfect for keeping all your belongings dry!  Not only is it great for the beach, but you could also use it to protect your valuables from the rain. We also included a shoulder strap for easy carrying.  FUN FACT: they float in the water!!! You don’t have to leave your precious cargo on the beach unattended anymore.  Pink and Red are perfect for Valentines Day, but our waterproof bags also come in other colors – Blue and Navy.

Enjoy Life is our most popular “heart” design!  It features Hauoli Chan on a surfboard and reminds us to always “Enjoy Life One Wave at a Time”.  If pink is not your color, we also have this design in White.  This T-shirt has a classic regular T-shirt fit and is made in Hawaii.

Think Happy is our favorite Pink T-shirt!  This “Made in Hawaii” T-shirt is a boyfriend style shirt (slim fit) and also comes in Natural.  It features Happy Chan roller skating – a favorite classic date night activity!  What’s your date night plans for Valentines Day? 

Valentine’s Day is all about hearts, flowers and yummy desserts.  When we think of dessert, we think of Shave Ice!  Shave Ice is probably Hawaii’s most popular dessert, so we had to add in our Aloha Shave Ice T-shirt!  This super soft Made in Hawaii tee will definitely warm your heart!  This design also comes in White.

Our newest addition is the Shave Ice Strawberry / Pineapple Water Bottle!  This 18 oz. water bottle keeps drinks cold (24 hours) and hot (12 hours) with its double vacuum sealed insulation.  The cap has a strap for easy carrying.  It also comes in Vanilla / Blue Hawaii (blue to teal ombre).  It’s a perfect gift for any of your loved ones!

Our most popular flip flops (or slippers) is the Ipanema Wave Heart!  It is delicately feminine and fits the foot’s natural contours for a subtle dressy look!  It features a bold metallic heart perfect for any occasion, not just Valentine’s Day!  We carry this design in multiple colors (Pink, Navy and Brown) as well as Kids sizes (Blue, Yellow and Navy).

If you are looking for little trinkets for your loved ones, we got you covered!  From keychains to stickers to coin cases and Happy Chan dolls we have a handful of smaller items for everyone that you love.

Lastly, we have our Bottom Circle Sea Shore Bag featuring love and hearts!  Perfect bag for carrying beach towels to your everyday essentials. We are currently offering this Bottom circle bag FREE with your $100 or more purchase.  While supplies last and no promo code needed.  

Right now, the world needs love… so spread your love today!

Easy DIY: Vision Board

Today is Vision Board Day! Have you ever made a vision board? A vision board or dream board is a collection or collage of images and words to help you envision your goals and dreams. It is used as a tool of motivation and can be created very easily. It’s a great time to create a vision board as it is the beginning of a new year. New year, new you! You don’t need any fancy supplies. We like to use old magazines, stickers, some scissors, glue and a board, piece of cardstock or even a notebook.

First, think about your goals. Our goals this year is to declutter our home and to start a daily yoga practice. With that goal in mind, go through magazines that relate to your goal. It could be a word, phrase that catches your eye or an image. Start cutting them out and paste them onto your board, notebook, or cardstock.

We found a lot of great images that reflect the feeling we’re trying to bring to our home – a nice simple, decluttered space. We found some great words to go with our goals as well. The collage doesn’t have to be perfect. Have fun with it. It’s very therapeutic and freeing!

We even managed to find messages in our stickers that fit with the 2021 vibes we were going for.

We finished the vision board by writing out the year. It will be nice to reflect on our goals at the end of the year.

Here’s our finished vision board. Make sure you place it where you can see it everyday, whether it be on your wall near your desk, in the kitchen, or in a notebook / planner that you look at daily. We hope you have fun making your own vision boards!

Strawberry Jello Mochi

The New Year is approaching and that means it’s time to make mochi! We wanted to share an easy recipe using a box of Jell-O that we tried (original recipe was found on ilovehawaiianfoodrecipes.com which seems to be down at the moment). You will need only a few ingredients and a microwave.

Mix your ingredients according to the recipe until everything is well blended. When you place it in the microwave, make sure your bowl is microwave safe.

Microwave your mixture for 1 minute. Depending on your microwave, you may have to do this a few times. We had to do it about 4 times to get the right consistency.

This next part is a little messy. Poor Happy Chan! The Mochi will be hot as you handle the pieces, so make sure to dust your hands with starch and handle everything carefully.

Tada! Mochi is ready! Very easy recipe to follow and perfect for when you you’re in a pinch. Let us know if you try it!

Print

Strawberry Jello Mochi

Easy mochi recipe using Jell-o
Course Dessert
Author ilovehawaiianfoodrecipes.com

Equipment

  • Microwave

Ingredients

  • 1 cup mochiko sweet flour
  • 1 3 oz box strawberry Jell-O
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • potato or corn starch (for dusting)

Instructions

  • In a microwaveable bowl, add flour, jello and sugar. Whisk together until combined.
  • Add cup of hot water and vanilla, mix until well blended.
  • Cover loosely with plastic wrap and microwave on high for 1 minute. Uncover and mix, repeat until mixture is solid. Depending on your microwave, you may have to repeat 3 to 5 times, or 3 to 5 minutes.
  • On a baking sheet, line with parchment paper and dust with starch. Place cooked mochi and add more starch. Press mochi until you have a rectangle, then slice into squares. Slice enough so you can pull a section to roll into balls.
  • Mochi will be hot so dust your hands with starch and handle carefully. You should be able to make 14 to 16 pieces.

Show Aloha Land

This year, drive thru Christmas events became the best way to enjoy holiday togetherness in the safest way possible. In Hawaii, we have the Show Aloha Land event at the Aloha Stadium. You purchase your tickets in advance, one ticket per vehicle.

When you enter the event, be sure to set your radio to 88.7 FM to listen for announcements. Your ticket will be scanned and you’ll have the opportunity to purchase a bag of kettle corn to munch on while you enjoy the lights. Once your ticket is scanned, switch your radio to 88.5 FM. The event has their own Christmas music playlist you can listen to as you drive thru. They timed it perfectly to their lights.

There is a lot to look at on both sides, but don’t worry, if you miss it on your side, the lights will repeat in the next row of lights. Some of the lights with the elves were comical.

Our favorite part was the tunnel of lights. You go through a few of these and it transports you to a lovely forest of tree lights. They change colors quite frequently so you get a different look each time.

At the end of the drive, you have the opportunity to buy food. They serve a variety of meals from spicy ahi bowls to hot dogs and dippin dots. You can also stop at the big tree to take a photo with your loved ones.

show-aloha-land-drive-thru-christmas-lights-9

It was definitely an experience to symbolize our pandemic year. The event will continue to run until January if you’re interested in experiencing it yourself. Do you have something similar in your country or state? Let us know in the comments below. Hope everyone has a happy holiday season!

Oh Christmas Tree

One of our most favorite Christmas traditions, is decorating the Christmas Tree.  The smell of a fresh Christmas Tree just reminds us of the holiday season, our favorite time of the year.  Choosing the perfect tree is a special process… but because we live in Hawaii, there aren’t very many “Christmas Tree” farms.  Most Christmas Trees get shipped to us in containers, and we head to lots to buy the “perfect” tree.

The tricky part about getting the tree is getting it on the car.  But with some help from the friendly workers, we were able to get it on the car and tie it down. 

We got the tree into the house, and oops it’s a little bit too big for the space, but the bigger the better.  We just have a little extra “Christmas Spirit” this year.  Then the fun part starts… decorating!  

One side of our tree is decorated for our love for Happy Haleiwa. It’s so cute to see Happy, Hau’oli, and Hoku joining in on the Holiday spirit!

The other side is decorated with our collection of Disney mouse ears! We miss going to the Disney parks. We hope we can visit once we are able to travel again. Tell us what’s your favorite Christmas tradition in the comments.  We would love to hear what your family does!

Happy Hot Cocoa Bar

It hit the 70s in Hawaii last week which means it’s time for chilly nights and hot cocoa. We decided to create a hot chocolate bar! It came out so cute. We used a bunch of crates, little trees, a mason jar and a few hot chocolate essentials. We used the little crates to create height and interest and to hold our hot chocolate packets.

Our perfect hot chocolate includes some whipped cream, marshmallows and a candy cane to stir. Here are some ideas for hot chocolate toppings:

  • whipped cream
  • mini marshmallows
  • sprinkles
  • chocolate sauce
  • coconut shavings
  • crushed candy canes
  • caramel sauce
  • cinammon
  • full candy cane (as a stirrer!)

To make a an even creamier hot chocolate, heat up some milk instead of using water. It makes a more decadent hot cup of cocoa. How do you like your hot cocoa? Let us know in the comments below.

Happy Style Spam Musubi

Today we want to share with your our favorite way to make Spam Musubi. Spam Musubi is a favorite dish among locals in Hawaii. It’s perfect for a quick meal.

We like using the less sodium version of Spam as we will later add a teriyaki glaze. It gives it a nice sweet flavor. We like to use Aloha brand Mango Pineapple teriyaki glaze. If you can’t find this particular product where you live, feel free to use your own teriyaki glaze.

We like our spam a little crispy so we fry it at a low temperature until it’s crispy on the outside and a little soft on the inside. However you can fry it to your preferred texture.

Another option is to add some furikake seasoning to your rice to give it more nori flavor.

After frying the spam, add the glaze until the spam slices are nicely coated.

Now you’re ready to assemble! Start with a nice strip of nori on the bottom. We like a lot of nori so we used the mold to measure how large to cut it. However, you can customize to your own taste. Next put the mold on the nori, followed by the rice and last but not least the spam. Remove the mold carefully and wrap the nori around your rice ball and spam. You can use a teeny bit of water to seal the nori.

Tada! It’s all ready to eat! You can wrap them up to save for later or to share with your friends. Let us know if you try it!

Print

Happy Style Spam Musubi

Easy recipe for Hawaii's favorite on the go dish – spam musubi
Course Breakfast, Snack

Equipment

  • Musubi Mold

Ingredients

  • 1 can Spam (low sodium)
  • 1/3 cup cup Mango Pineapple Teriyaki Glaze (or your favorite teriyaki glaze)
  • 2 cups white rice (cooked)
  • 3 sheets nori
  • furikake (optional)

Instructions

  • Slice spam evenly into about 8-9 slices (depending on how thick you like it) and fry in a nonstick pan on low heat if you like it with a nice crisp outer texture.
  • While the spam cooks, mix furikake into your cooked rice.
  • After cooking spam, remove the spam from the pan and set aside. In the same pan, add the teriyaki glaze. Add the spam slices back into the pan coat each slice evenly. Remove from glaze and set aside. We like to use a cooling rack or you can use a plate.
  • Start assembling your musubis. Layer in this order – 1. A strip of nori (you can adjust the size to your taste), 2. Musubi mold, 3. Furikake rice, 4. Spam slice.
  • Carefully remove the mold. Wrap the nori around the musubi. You can use a tiny bit of water to help seal the nori.

Happy Acai Bowl Recipe

Today, we want to share with you an easy acai bowl recipe. All you need is a few ingredients and a blender. You can top your acai bowl with so many different toppings, but our favorite toppings include our Happy Honey and Aloha Sunrise Granola.

For the base of the acai bowl, you can use any available frozen acai puree. We also use frozen berries and frozen banana (cut up into slices) so that the consistency of the mixture is thick. You can add more liquid to the recipe to make it more of a smoothie base as well.

After blending the mixture, place it in a bowl and add your favorite toppings. We love Aloha Sunrise Granola as it gives it a natural sweetness as well as a nice crunchy texture. Add some fresh fruits and drizzle our Happy Honey to complete the dish. We hope you enjoy our recipe and please let us know in the comments what your favorite toppings are.

Print

Happy Acai Bowl

Yummy and easy acai bowl
Course Breakfast, Snack
Keyword acai
Servings 1

Equipment

  • Blender

Ingredients

  • 1 packet of acai puree
  • 1/2 large banana
  • 1/2 cup frozen berries
  • 1/4 cup milk of your choice (varies based on thickness preference)
  • toppings: granola, strawberry, honey, etc.

Instructions

  • Blend acai, banana, frozen berries, and milk to your blender's specifications and to how thick you would like your acai bowl to be.
  • Place acai mixture into a bowl and add the toppings of your choice.

Happy Mug Cake using Pancake Mix!

Today we’re going to show you how to make the easiest, quickest dessert using our pancake mix and one of our mugs! Aren’t there days when you are craving a sweet homemade dessert but you just don’t have the energy to do a lot of dishes or make a giant batch of cookies? We have the perfect dessert for you!

Our mug cake is really easy to make using just a few simple ingredients and your microwave. You could customize this recipe to your taste by adding other ingredients like blueberries or bananas instead of the chocolate. Or you could use our banana pancake mix to make a banana chocolate chip mug cake. You could even add a scoop of your favorite ice cream to make it even more decadent.

Print

Happy Mug Choco Chip Pancake

A chocolate chip mug cake using Happy Haleiwa pancake mix.
Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 3 minutes
Cook Time 2 minutes
Servings 1

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup Happy Haleiwa Pancake Mix
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp chocolate chips

Instructions

  • In a microwaveable mug, stir together the Happy Haleiwa pancake mix, milk, sugar and chocolate chips.
  • Cover the mug with plastic wrap. Microwave for about 1 minute to 1 minute and 20 seconds. Be careful when taking it out of the microwave, it may be a little hot.
  • Sprinkle more chocolate chips or any other toppings of your choice on top.

We hope you enjoy! Please let us know in the comments below if you tried it and if you created your own fun combinations. You can find all the products used in this recipe on our online shop at http://happyhaleiwa.net.