Maui Food and Dining

No Sweat, No Cook Thanksgiving Options

November 20, 2012, 3:22 PM HST
* Updated November 20, 4:38 PM
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Vanessa Wolf is a former head chef, previously working in Portland, Oregon who does not believe in turning on the oven when it’s 85 degrees outside. She’s on the fence about Santa.

By Vanessa Wolf

Sushi rarely contains raw turkey. Getty images.

Realizing you don’t have the three days it takes to thaw a 15 pound turkey in the refrigerator?

Perhaps you defrosted the turkey, but you’re staring at it in all its pale, raw glory and coming to terms with the reality that you don’t have a goddamned clue.

It’s gonna be OK.


Chuck that bird over the fence and don’t worry your pretty little head: there are plenty of options to get your Thanksgiving on this Thursday without even setting foot in the kitchen.


For starters, the Makena Beach & Golf Resort’s Molokini Bar & Grille is offering a full Thanksgiving feast from 2-8 p.m.

Their signature thyme and sage oven roasted turkey with traditional giblet gravy, cranberry relish and cornbread stuffing will accompany carved-to-order action stations with guava honey-glazed ham with a warm black cherry sauce and herb crusted prime rib au jus with fresh horseradish cream.

Traditional sides will be available alongside pumpkin bisque soup with cinnamon crème fraiche and unique salads like banana chicken & sweet Molokai sweet potato.


The buffet will also feature fresh seafood such as peel-and-eat tiger prawns, Dungeness crab legs, oysters on the half shell; plus a variety of fresh island sashimi, rolled sushi and an assortment of tako, ahi, and shrimp pokes.

The buffet is offered at $60 (plus tax) per person, $30 (children aged 6-12). Prices do not include tax or gratuity. Seating is limited and reservations are required.

Grand Wailea is holding a Thanksgiving Luau from 5-8:30 p.m.

Enjoy Thanksgiving while watching Honua’ula under the Maui sky. The show covers the voyage of the first Polynesians who discovered Maui and the co-existence of gods and goddess of Hawaii living in harmony.

The meal itself will feature carved imu turkey and kalua pig, oven baked macadamia nut crusted mahimahi and a seafood boil station of clams, mussels and ono. There is also a hosted bar featuring Mai Tais, Pina Coladas, mixed drinks, beer, wine and assorted soft drinks.

Tickets are $96 adults and for $51 children 6 to 12-years-old. Premium seating is $106 for adults and $80 for children 6 to 12. Call 808-875-1234 ext. 4500 to reserve seats.

Pacific Whale Foundation is offering a “uniquely Maui” Thanksgiving dinner on a modern, high-tech catamaran on the beautiful Pacific Ocean.

“There’s no other setting like this in the world,” says John Gaskins, Customer Care Manager at Pacific Whale Foundation. “You will enjoy a delicious chef-prepared Thanksgiving meal with the possibility of guest appearances by wild dolphins or humpback whales,” he says. “And on our 5 p.m. Thanksgiving Dinner Cruise, nature throws in the incredible beauty of a sunset casting red, orange and rose-colored tints upon the sea.”

The special holiday menu includes Kalua Turkey with Giblet Gravy (turkey cooked in a traditional Hawaiian style underground oven), Island Kalua Ham with Guava Jelly, Portuguese Sausage Stuffing, Whipped Garlic Potatoes, Corn on the Cob,  Grilled Island Vegetables and more.

Adult guests over age 21 with a valid photo ID can enjoy up to three alcoholic beverages with their meal. All guests can choose unlimited soda, soft drinks and filtered water.

Pacific Whale Foundation’s Thanksgiving Dinner Cruises depart from Lahaina Harbor. The cruises leave at 2 and 5 p.m. at a cost of $84.95 for adults and $59.95 for children ages 3 to 12. Reservations are required and guests can save 10% by booking online.

Are you waking up in the night in a cold sweat attempting to reconcile the cold, hard reality that you have  20 people coming over for Thanksgiving…but the last turkey you made was (unfavorably) compared to sawdust?

It happens.

Resume breathing, pick up the phone, and place an order with Whole Foods.

A fully prepared turkey dinner for six, featuring a 10-12 pound Diestel Ranch roasted turkey, traditional stuffing, gravy, mashed potatoes, and cranberry sauce can be yours for $99. Upsized turkeys are available as well for an additional $10-$30.

Not a fan of the gobbler?

Ham meals for six include a 7 pound spiral cut bone-in ham, scalloped potatoes, green bean almondine and autumn puree for the same price.

Be sure to call and place your order ASAP. Meals are available for pickup anytime from today through Thursday.

We welcome your feedback. Please let us know if you hear of any new restaurants opening or reopening, total menu overhauls, or simply know of a hidden treasure you want to share. Have a restaurant you want reviewed (or re-reviewed)? Drop us a line.

Dying to know how a certain dish is made so you can recreate it at home? Send in a request, and we will try to pry the secret out of the chef…and even take a run at cooking it up ourselves. Mahalo. -vanessa(

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