How to Have a Poke Party

Creamy poke bowl topped with Sriracha and fish roe

Get on the latest trend from the Hawaiian islands and host a Poke Party (pronounced Poh-kay). Much like a taco bar, you supply a variety of ingredients and your guests create their own brand of poke.

It all starts with good quality fish, shellfish and other saltwater creatures like octopus. The fresher, the better. The fish is cut up into 1/2-inch pieces.  Unlike ceviche that “cooks” fish with acidic lime and lemon juices, poke is more like a quick marinade. Raw fish isn’t for everyone. If your group includes a few less adventurous eaters, include some cooked fish and shrimp so they don’t feel left out, but I always encourage them to at least give the raw poke a try.

tuna poke bowl topped with seaweed salad

Do all of the prep before your guests arrive. Have all the ingredients chopped, diced and ready to serve in separate containers in the refrigerator. When it’s party time, there’s no waiting. I like to provide mixing bowls so that the poke can be mixed and loaded into personal bowls with either rice or salad mix. A typical spread includes…






seaweed salad



soy sauce or ponzu

sesame oil

sesame seeds

green, red or yellow onions

pickled and fresh ginger


consider nuts as toppings too such as grinding macadamia nuts or other tropical nuts

tuna poke bowl with mango and crunchy macadamia nuts for topping

And offer your guests a cooked fish too – like this cooked Mahi Mahi. Simply throw it on the grill for a few minutes each side to keep the fish moist.

cooked Mahi Mahi poke bowl with avocado and seaweed salad

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