Aloha Chicken Recipe - Traditional Hawaiian Dish

Aloha Chicken

Aloha Chicken Recipe - Traditional Hawaiian Dish
Region / culture: Hawaii | Preparation time: 20 minutes | Cooking time: 40 minutes | Servings: 6


Aloha Chicken
Aloha Chicken

Aloha Chicken is a delightful dish that brings a taste of the tropics to your dinner table. This recipe combines the savory flavors of chicken with the sweetness of pineapple and the crunch of fresh vegetables, creating a meal that's both nutritious and satisfying. Perfect for those who love to infuse their cooking with a bit of island flair, Aloha Chicken is sure to become a favorite in your recipe collection.


The origins of Aloha Chicken can be traced back to the cultural melting pot of Hawaii, where influences from Asian, Polynesian, and American cuisines blend together to create unique and flavorful dishes. This recipe, in particular, reflects the Hawaiian spirit of "Aloha" - a term that conveys love, peace, and compassion. It's a dish that embodies the island's tradition of sharing good food with family and friends.


How to prepare

  1. Simmer the chicken in water with bouillon cubes.
  2. Remove the meat from the bones and cut it into chunks.
  3. Save 1 cup of chicken broth.
  4. While the chicken is cooking, melt margarine in a frying pan or wok and sauté the radishes, green pepper, and pineapple until they are crisp-tender, but not browned (put rice on to cook).
  5. Mix 1 cup of saved chicken broth with 0.5 cup of pineapple juice and 1 tsp of soy sauce.
  6. Add the mixture to the pan.
  7. Mix flour with 1 tbsp of cold water and stir to remove lumps.
  8. Add the mixture to the vegetables.
  9. Add the cut-up chicken and a dash of pepper, and cook until everything is hot.
  10. Serve over rice.
  11. If desired, sprinkle chow mein noodles on top.


  • There are several ways to customize the Aloha Chicken recipe to suit your taste preferences or dietary needs. Some variations include:
  • Using shrimp or tofu as a protein alternative.
  • Adding different vegetables such as snap peas or carrots for more variety.
  • Incorporating a hint of spice with a dash of red pepper flakes or sriracha.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

To ensure your Aloha Chicken turns out perfectly, consider these tips:

- Use fresh pineapple if available for a more vibrant flavor.

- Sauté the vegetables just until they're crisp-tender to maintain their texture and nutrients.

- Be careful not to overcook the chicken to keep it juicy and tender.

- Adjust the amount of soy sauce according to your taste preference and dietary needs.

Serving Suggestions

Aloha Chicken is best served hot over a bed of fluffy rice. For a complete meal, accompany it with a side of steamed vegetables or a fresh salad. The dish's vibrant flavors and colors make it a visually appealing and satisfying meal.

Cooking Techniques

The key techniques in preparing Aloha Chicken involve simmering, sautéing, and thickening a sauce. Simmering the chicken ensures it's cooked through without drying out. Sautéing the vegetables quickly retains their texture and nutrients. Thickening the sauce with flour and water creates a silky consistency that coats the ingredients evenly.

Ingredient Substitutions

If you're missing an ingredient or want to make a healthier version of Aloha Chicken, consider these substitutions:

- Use olive oil instead of margarine for sautéing.

- Substitute brown rice or quinoa for white rice for added fiber.

- Replace soy sauce with a low-sodium or gluten-free alternative.

Make Ahead Tips

To save time, you can prepare some components of Aloha Chicken in advance. Cook the chicken and chop the vegetables ahead of time, storing them in the refrigerator until you're ready to cook. The dish can then be quickly assembled and served, making it a convenient option for busy weeknights.

Presentation Ideas

Serve Aloha Chicken in a large, shallow bowl or platter to showcase the colorful ingredients. Garnish with a sprinkle of sesame seeds, sliced green onions, or a wedge of lime for an extra touch of flavor and visual appeal.

Pairing Recommendations

Aloha Chicken pairs well with light and refreshing beverages such as iced green tea or a tropical fruit smoothie. For wine enthusiasts, a crisp white wine like Sauvignon Blanc or a light Pinot Noir complements the dish's sweet and savory flavors.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Leftover Aloha Chicken can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, gently warm the dish in a skillet over medium heat, adding a splash of water or pineapple juice to keep it moist. Avoid microwaving, as it can make the vegetables soggy.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

A single serving of Aloha Chicken contains approximately 350-400 calories, making it a suitable option for those managing their calorie intake. The exact calorie count can vary based on the specific ingredients used and portion sizes.


A serving of Aloha Chicken provides a moderate amount of carbohydrates, primarily from the rice and pineapple. The rice serves as a good source of energy, while the pineapple adds a natural sweetness and fiber. To reduce the carbohydrate content, you can opt for brown rice or a low-carb alternative like cauliflower rice.


This recipe is relatively low in fats, with the main sources being the margarine used for sautéing and the natural fats in the chicken. Using margarine helps keep the saturated fat content lower than using butter. For a healthier option, you can substitute the margarine with olive oil or another heart-healthy fat.


Chicken is an excellent source of high-quality protein, which is essential for muscle repair and growth. This dish provides a generous amount of protein, making it a great option for those looking to maintain or increase their muscle mass. The protein content also helps keep you feeling full and satisfied.

Vitamins and minerals

Aloha Chicken is rich in vitamins and minerals, thanks to the variety of vegetables and pineapple. Pineapple is a good source of vitamin C and manganese, while the vegetables add a range of nutrients including vitamins A and K, potassium, and iron. These nutrients support overall health and well-being.


This recipe may contain allergens such as soy (from the soy sauce) and gluten (from the flour and optional chow mein noodles). For those with allergies or sensitivities, gluten-free flour and soy sauce alternatives can be used.


Overall, Aloha Chicken is a balanced and nutritious meal that provides a good mix of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats, along with essential vitamins and minerals. It's a flavorful way to enjoy a variety of nutrients while indulging in the tastes of the tropics.


Aloha Chicken is a versatile and flavorful dish that brings a taste of Hawaii to your table. With its combination of tender chicken, sweet pineapple, and crisp vegetables, it offers a balanced and nutritious meal that's sure to please. Whether you're looking for a quick weeknight dinner or a festive meal to share with friends, Aloha Chicken is a delightful choice that embodies the warm and welcoming spirit of Aloha.

How did I get this recipe?

I can still recall the sense of amazement I felt when I first saw this recipe for Aloha Chicken. It was a warm summer day, and I was visiting my friend Daisy in Hawaii. She invited me over for dinner, promising to cook me a meal that would transport me to the tropical paradise of the islands.

As soon as I walked into her kitchen, I was hit with the most incredible aroma. The sweet and tangy smell of pineapple mixed with the savory scent of chicken wafted through the air, making my mouth water. Daisy greeted me with a warm smile and handed me a glass of chilled pineapple juice.

"I hope you're hungry," she said with a twinkle in her eye. "I'm making Aloha Chicken for dinner tonight."

I had never heard of Aloha Chicken before, but as Daisy began to gather the ingredients and explain the recipe to me, I knew I was in for a treat. She told me that Aloha Chicken was a popular dish in Hawaii, combining the flavors of pineapple, soy sauce, and sesame oil to create a mouthwatering dish that was both sweet and savory.

Daisy learned the recipe from her grandmother, who had learned it from a friend who had lived in Hawaii for many years. The recipe had been passed down through generations, each cook adding their own twist to make it their own. Daisy had perfected the recipe, and I couldn't wait to taste the fruits of her labor.

As she marinated the chicken in a mixture of pineapple juice, soy sauce, garlic, and ginger, I watched in awe as she worked her magic in the kitchen. The smell of the marinade was intoxicating, and I knew that this dish was going to be something special.

After letting the chicken marinate for a few hours, Daisy grilled it to perfection, basting it with the remaining marinade to lock in all the flavors. The chicken sizzled on the grill, the juices dripping down and creating a mouthwatering aroma that filled the kitchen.

As we sat down to eat, Daisy served the Aloha Chicken with a side of coconut rice and a fresh pineapple salsa. The first bite was pure bliss – the chicken was tender and juicy, with a perfect balance of sweet and savory flavors. The pineapple salsa added a refreshing touch, and the coconut rice was the perfect accompaniment.

As I savored each bite, I couldn't help but marvel at the beauty of this dish. It was more than just a meal – it was a taste of Hawaii, a reminder of the warm breezes and palm trees that surrounded us. I knew that I had to learn how to make this dish for myself, so that I could bring a little piece of paradise into my own kitchen.

Daisy graciously shared the recipe with me, and I returned home with a newfound sense of excitement. I couldn't wait to recreate the magic of Aloha Chicken in my own kitchen, to share it with my family and friends and spread a little bit of Hawaiian joy wherever I went.

Over the years, I've made Aloha Chicken countless times, each time adding my own twist to make it my own. I've shared the recipe with friends and family, passing on the tradition of this delicious dish to the next generation. And every time I take a bite of that tender, juicy chicken, I'm transported back to that warm summer day in Hawaii, watching Daisy work her magic in the kitchen.

Aloha Chicken will always hold a special place in my heart, not just for its delicious flavors, but for the memories and traditions that it represents. It's a dish that brings people together, that creates moments of joy and laughter around the dinner table. And for that, I am forever grateful.


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