79-7500 Mamalahoa HwyKealakekuaHawai'i 808-324-6600Website
Dragonfruit Farms
833 Punakea LoopLahaina(808) 264-6127Website
Frankie's Nursery
41-999 Mahiku PlWaimanaloOahu(808) 259-8737Website
Kahuku Farms
56-800 Kamehameha HwyKahukuOahu808-628-0639Website
WaianaeOahu(808) 696-2040


KCC Saturday Farmers Market
4303 Diamond Head RdHonoluluOahu(808) 848-2074Website
Ala Moana Farmers' Market
1450 Ala Moana BoulevardHonoluluOahu(808) 388-9696Website
Honolulu Farmers' Market
Neil Blaisdell Center777 Ward AvenueHonoluluOahu(808) 848-2074Website

Dragon Fruit (pithaya, strawberry pear, papipi pua)

This otherworldly looking fruit is part of the cactus family. They are native to southern Mexico and Central America but are now cultivated heavily in Asia. Three different varieties are being grown in Hawaii: red-skinned with white flesh, red-skinned with dark magenta flesh, and the smaller yellow skinned with white or yellow flesh (most folks call this one Pitaya, it’s original South American name). The red-skinned fruits are usually palm sized and have a heft to them, as the flesh is full of thirst quenching moisture. It has a delicate flavor, very much mild side – which is always surprising given its outrageous appearance.

It’s remarkably colored and leafy skin is leather like. Inside, its flesh is like a kiwi – a constellation of numerous tiny black seeds scattered throughout juicy melon like flesh. These seeds are eaten, like with kiwi.

Dragon fruits contain vitamin C, phosphorous and calcium. They are also a good source of fiber and very low calorie.

These amazing looking fruit grow on long green cactus stems. They are of the Night Blooming Cereus family and are almost identical to the long hedge growing along Punahou’s black rock wall, though Punahou’s is a decorative variety as opposed to the heavily fruiting ones that are being grown for fruit.

Inside view of a fuschia fleshed dragonfruit

Prepping & Eating Tips

– Always wash your dragon fruit well before eating

– The skin of the dragon fruit is not edible

– Most folks just cut the fruit lengthwise and scoop out the flesh with a spoon!

– The flesh seperates very easily from the skin with a knife or a spoon

– Dragon fruit is mainly enjoyed raw. It can also be added to juices, frozen, made into preserves, pureed and added to beverages and even cocktails

Selecting & Storing Tips

Avoid dragon fruit with too many brown bruises and really dried looking stem (piko like thing at the top of the fruit). Local dragon fruit is not only fresher, but possibly safer too — sometimes dragon fruit grown on large scale farms in other countries are heavily sprayed and come through long transportation routes.

Dragon Fruit does not continue to ripen after it is harvested but its flavor and quality deteriorates rather quickly, so enjoy soon. It can be stored in the veggie bin of your refrigerator for up to a week. It can also be peeled, cut and frozen for up to three months.

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