Hawaiian Macaroni Salad Recipe (L&L BBQ Copycat)

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This Hawaiian Macaroni Salad is the real island deal, from how it’s made to what’s in it. This recipe uses basic ingredients found in your kitchen to make a creamy macaroni salad that’s perfect for any barbecue or luau.

Hawaiian Macaroni Salad Recipe
Hawaiian Macaroni Salad Recipe

Discover the authentic flavors of Hawaii with our delicious Hawaiian Macaroni Salad recipe. Creamy, delicious and insanely satisfying, this dish brings the essence of the islands to your table. Learn how to make this classic recipe that perfectly balances creamy macaroni with a touch of crunch from diced onions and shredded carrots. Whether enjoyed as an appetizer, side dish, or standalone delight, our Hawaiian Macaroni Salad is a true taste of heaven.

Why you’ll love this recipe

⭐ it’s budget friendly.

⭐ it’s great for parties or gatherings.

⭐ it’s super easy to make.

Hawaiian Macaroni Salad Recipe

Recipe by Zanib MughalCourse: SidesCuisine: HawaiiDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time





Want the BEST L&L Hawaiian BBQ Macaroni Salad Recipe? look no further. This quick recipe, straight from Eddie Flores, Jr.’s cookbook, brings the iconic flavors of L&L straight to your table.


  • 1/2 gallon water

  • 1 lb. dried elbow macaroni

  • 1/2 cup diced onion

  • 1/2 cup shredded carrot

  • 3 cups mayonnaise

  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper

  • 2 teaspoons salt


  • Take a big pot and boil water in it.
  • Cook the dried elbow macaroni in the boiling water until al dente (8-10 minutes). Drain and rinse under cold water.
  • Combine diced onion and shredded carrot in a mixing bowl.
  • Add the cooled macaroni to the bowl.
  • Gently fold in mayonnaise to coat macaroni, onion, and carrot.
  • Season with white pepper and salt. Mix thoroughly.
  • Refrigerate for an hour to enhance flavors and chill.
  • Before serving, give a final stir. Enjoy your L&L BBQ inspired Hawaiian Macaroni Salad!

Recipe Video

Things to Know

✔️ Use the salt in the pot of water to season the pasta well.

✔️ The onion in Hawaiian BBQ Macaroni Salad is very small, like minced meat. So finely chop your onion and wash it with fresh water to remove any bitterness.

✔️ You can adjust the mayonnaise according to your taste. The cookbook recommends using Best Foods or Hellman’s mayonnaise, so if possible, try to use these to get the best copycat flavor.

✔️ I like to add a little milk (maybe 2,3 tablespoons) to pasta salad just before serving, to make sure the pasta is creamy and moist enough.

✔️ You can also adjust the salt to your liking, as there is 2 teaspoons of salt, according to the cookbook, which can make the dish more salty.

l&l hawaiian macaroni salad recipe with tuna

Transform classic L&L Hawaiian Macaroni Salad by adding tuna for a delightful twist. Prepare the macaroni salad as usual, and then add the drained tuna chunks to it before chilling. Creamy mayo, soft macaroni, and savory tuna create a harmonious blend of flavors that’s perfect for a satisfying meal or side dish. Adjust seasoning and mayo as needed. Enjoy a fusion of Hawaiian comforts and seafood goodness!

when to make hawaiian macaroni salad

Experience the authentic taste of Hawaiian Macaroni Salad by making it completely ahead. This allows the flavors to meld perfectly, ensuring a truly enjoyable culinary experience.

Hawaiian Macaroni Salad Recipe
Hawaiian Macaroni Salad Recipe

How to Serve Hawaiian Macaroni Salad

Enjoy the deliciousness of Hawaiian Macaroni Salad as an appetizer or serve it as a side dish with Shepherd’s Pie or Cry Baby Noodles for a satisfying meal. Kickstart with Rafferty’s Potato Soup as a starter, and don’t forget the perfect ending – enjoy the flavor with our delicious Anabolic Ice Cream. An entire culinary journey awaits!

Storing & Freezing

Storage: If you have leftover pasta salad, carefully store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It can be kept for 5 days. Serve chilled and enjoy!

Freezing: I personally would not recommend freezing this because of the mayonnaise, as it can change the flavor of the pasta salad.

Your Queries Got Answered!

Why does Hawaiian Mac Salad taste different?

Hawaiian Macaroni Salad tastes different because of its unique blend of creamy mayo, grated onions, and grated carrots, which create a sweet and tangy profile that sets it apart from traditional macaroni salad.

What is Hawaiian Macaroni made of?

Hawaiian macaroni salad typically consists of cooked elbow macaroni, chopped onions, shredded carrots, mayonnaise, white pepper, and salt.

Why is macaroni salad in Hawaiian cuisine?

Hawaiian cuisine includes macaroni salad due to historical influences such as the mixing of cultures and tastes. It has become a food favorite, offering a cool and creamy dish in contrast to the bolder dishes of the island.

What makes Ono Hawaiian BBQ Macaroni Salad?

Ono Hawaiian BBQ Macaroni Salad is typically made with cooked macaroni, mayonnaise, grated onions, shredded carrots, salt, and white pepper.

Is there tuna in the L&L Macaroni Salad?

No, L&L Hawaiian Macaroni Salad typically does not contain tuna. It’s a classic side dish that includes macaroni, mayo, and vegetables.

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