10 Mouthwatering Reasons Hawaii’s 7-Elevens Are Mo’ Bettah
7-Elevens on the Mainland are lame. They’re all right if all you need is a Slurpee fix, but here in Hawaii, we have a lot more options. And a lot more 7-Elevens. Did you know that on the block surrounding the Hawaii Convention Center alone, there are three 7-Elevens?
So it’s a good thing our 7-Elevens in Hawaii are so much better than the 7-Elevens on the Mainland. Read on for 10 mouthwatering reasons why (and yes, SPAM is one of them).
1. SPAM musubi
SPAM musubi is Hawaii’s energy bar. We bring it to potlucks. We eat it for breakfast. We take it to the beach as a quick snack. It’s the perfect convenience store staple, really, and Hawaii’s 7-Elevens here don’t just stock the basic version; they’ve got SPAM and egg, teriyaki and hot dog. Last year, for a limited time, they even sold SPAM musubi covered with li hing powder. Let’s see a Mainland 7-Eleven dare such tasty innovation.
On the Mainland, people call this dim sum item, “char siu bao.” In Hawaii, we call it “manapua,” a shortened term from the Hawaiian “mea ono puaa,” meaning, “thing delicious pork.” And yes, these delicious bundles come in different flavors, too.
3. Somen and ramen salad
On the Mainland, you’ll have to find your somen and ramen salads at Japanese restaurants — if you’re lucky. Here in Hawaii, we can grab these simple and relatively healthy salads right at 7-Eleven.
4. Fried rice Portuguese sausage menehune pack
It’s hard to avoid these yummy, hot mini-bentos staring at you by the checkout line. They call it the menehune pack for a reason, because it is tiny and follows you at every 7-Eleven.
5. Hawaiian candy gummy candy
On the Mainland, there aren’t many choices in the candy aisle. In Hawaii, we can skip the Starbursts for these yummy Hawaiian candies coated with sweet li hing mui powder. Extra strength li hing yummy gummy bears? Yes, please.
6. Li hing mango
In Hawaii, we can get fresh mangoes at the supermarket, in Chinatown and even from your neighbor’s tree. But we also like our mangoes dried and pickled, sprinkled with sweet li hing mui powder. Can you tell we love li hing mui on everything?
In Hawaii, you can get Saimin everywhere — even McDonald’s (Fun Fact: There are more 7-Elevens in the U.S. than McDonald’s). The one from 7-Eleven might not be as good as what you get from our favorite old-school saimin shops, but a bowl of S&S still gives us that warm feeling inside. It definitely beats the Top Ramen bowl you’ll have to settle for on the Mainland.
8. Spicy ahi nori roll
Sushi is available everywhere in Hawaii, including 7-Eleven. The nori seaweed in these dollar handrolls will stay crispy and fresh, even after refrigeration. You don’t have to be an Iron Chef to make your own Japanese delicacies.
9. Loco moco bento
You can’t go wrong combining white rice, a fried egg, a hamburger patty and gravy. Get a whole lot of comfort food for $5.
10. Nanding’s Bakery spanish rolls
When you can’t make it to Nanding’s Bakery in Kalihi or Waipahu for these sweet, buttery rolls, stop by your local 7-Eleven. Nanding’s Spanish Rolls are among our favorite sweet treats in Honolulu, and will only set you back only $1.25 for 3. And the first three will disappear in the car ride home.
Did we miss any reasons why Hawaii’s 7-Elevens are better than the Mainland’s? Share this story and add your comments below.