14 Local Places for Poke You Won’t Want to Pass Up

Tantalizing raw fish salad seasoned with soy sauce, sesame oil, scallions and all the toppings.

Last modified on October 16th, 2018 at 12:32 pm

Poke Bowl and Poke Burrito at PokeZone Sushi (Credit: Jackie Tran)

Poke is not just an outdated form of Facebook flirting. When pronounced ‘poh-kay’ or ‘po-key,’ it’s a delightful raw fish salad that originated in Hawaii.

And in those islands, it can be found all over: menus, supermarkets, convenience stores, and more.

Primarily influenced by Japanese cuisine, poke is usually seasoned with soy sauce, sesame oil, and scallions.

Though poke is traditionally served as an appetizer, it has evolved to rice bowls and vegetable salad toppings.

We’re lucky enough to have a list of excellent poke options here in the desert. To spice things up, we’ve included a few non-poke dishes that feature chopped raw tuna, such as tuna donburi and tartare. Not exactly poke, but definitely related.

Jimmy’s Pita & Poke

845 E. University Blvd.

Jimmy’s Pita & Poke has already offers the option to order customizable poke bowls, so feel free to swing by.

Although you can get your poke in a pita, the rice is good enough that you don’t really need to make the switch. Jicama is an unusual topping choice but offers a pleasant bright crunch.

Keep up with Jimmy’s Pita & Poke on Facebook.

Ginza Sushi

5425 N. Kolb Rd. Ste. 115
Tuna Poke Style Salad at Ginza Sushi (Credit: Ginza Sushi)

Tuna Poke Style Salad at Ginza Sushi (Credit: Ginza Sushi)

With sashimi-grade ahi, why sear it? The Tuna Poke Style Salad features fresh tuna and seaweed on a bed of spring mix greens and a spicy dressing, so there’s no carb guilt here.

For more information, visit ginzatucson.com.

Hoki Poki

6501 E. Grant Rd. • 88. E. Broadway Blvd.

The quickly expanding family of poke restaurants from local restaurant Bin An focuses on providing an approachable, affordable poke experience for everyone. The iPad ordering system makes ordering a breeze and locals love putting together their own poke bowl.

Popular favorites include the large salmon bowl with masago and sprouts, and the large (3 protein) bowl with spicy tuna, crab, octopus, and a variety of toppings — which include edamame, seaweed salad, onions, cucumbers, wasabi, ginger, and more.

Change locations to MiAn Sushi & Modern Cuisine on 88 E. Broadway Blvd. and you will find Hoki Poki’s bowls featured on their lunch menu.

For more information, visit hokipokibowl.com or check out MiAn Sushi & Modern Cuisine to feast on their menus.

Ikkyu

2040 W. Orange Grove Rd. Ste. 180
Volcano Tuna Don at Ikkyu (Credit: Jackie Tran)

Volcano Tuna Don at Ikkyu (Credit: Jackie Tran)

For an upgrade from the Spicy Tuna Don, order it Volcano-style. A bowl of sushi rice is topped with spicy tuna, seaweed, sesame seeds, scallions, cucumber, unagi sauce, spicy mayo, and crunchy tempura flakes. A side of miso soup is included.

For more information, visit ikkyutucson.com.

Island Plate Lunch

5575 E. River Rd. Ste. 141
Poke Bowl at Island Lunch Plate (Credit: Jackie Tran)

Poke Bowl at Island Lunch Plate (Credit: Jackie Tran)

Choose between salmon, ahi, or unagi for the Poke Bowl ($11.95), which also features crab salad, seaweed salad, nori, avocado, tobiko, wasabi tobiko, edamame, and special sauce.

For more information, visit islandplatelunch.com.

K Japanese Restaurant

2962 N. Campbell Ave.
Poki Salad at K Japanese Restaurant (Credit: Shana Gegantoca)

Poki Salad at K Japanese Restaurant (Credit: Shana Gegantoca)

The Poki Salad at K Japanese doesn’t feature typical salad greens, but rather seaweed salad, squid salad, and cucumber salad with radish, sashimi dice, and ponzu sauce.

For more information, visit kjprestaurant.wix.com/home.

Mr. An’s Teppan Steak, Sushi, & Seafood

6091 N. Oracle Rd.
Tuna Tar Tare at Mr. An's (Credit: Joseph Gotkin)

Tuna Tar Tare at Mr. An’s (Credit: Joseph Gotkin)

Mr. An’s Tuna Poke is served with diced ahi tuna sashimi, thinly sliced onions, green onions, and wasabi soy vinaigrette over cucumber.

For a modern variation, order the Tuna Tar Tare with avocado and mango in a spicy miso sauce topped with chopped tuna sashimi, tobiko, onion, and scallions.

For more information, visit mrantucson.com.

OBON Sushi + Bar + Ramen

350 E. Congress St. Ste. 120
Rainbow poke bowl at OBON Sushi + Bar + Ramen (Credit: Jackie Tran)

Rainbow poke bowl at OBON Sushi + Bar + Ramen (Credit: Jackie Tran)

The Poke Bowl at OBON is available as tuna, salmon, or rainbow. Go for the rainbow if you’d like the biggest variety of seafood.

The bowl is packed with sushi rice, cilantro microgreens, crispy onions, scallions, sunomono (cucumber salad), seaweed salad, jalapeño, avocado, and spicy poke dressing. It’s a huge portion, but you’ll love every single bite.

For more information, visit obonsushi.com.

PokeZone

54 W. Congress St.
PokeZone spread (Credit: Jackie Tran)

PokeZone spread (Credit: Jackie Tran)

PokeZone offers customizable poke bowls and poke burritos in the heart of downtown. Be aware — the poke burrito is wrapped in seaweed, not a tortilla, so it’s like a giant sushi roll.

For more information, visit pokezonetucson.com.

Sachiko Sushi

1101 N. Wilmot Rd.
Hawaiian Poki Salad at Sachiko on Wilmot (Credit: Jackie Tran)

Hawaiian Poki Salad at Sachiko on Wilmot (Credit: Jackie Tran)

The Hawaiian Poki Salad features chunks of ahi over iceberg lettuce with carrot, daikon, sprouts, sesame, scallions, and onion with a gingery poki dressing. Make sure to squeeze the wedge of orange over it, as the fruity sweetness and acidity help balance the dish.

Keep up with Sachiko Sushi on Facebook

Samurai

3912 N. Oracle Rd. Ste. 100
Volcano Spicy Tuna Don at Samurai (Credit: Shana Gegantoca)

Volcano Spicy Tuna Don at Samurai (Credit: Shana Gegantoca)

The Volcano Spicy Tuna Don also appears at Samurai, towering with rice, spicy tuna, masago, seaweed, scallion, cucumbers, spicy cumber, tempura flakes, spicy mayo, and sweet sauce. A cup of miso soup is included.

Keep up with Samurai on Facebook.

Sushi Cho

1830 E. Broadway Blvd. Ste 148
Poki Salad at Sushi Cho (Credit: Shana Gegantoca)

Poki Salad at Sushi Cho (Credit: Shana Gegantoca)

For only $7, the Poki Salad at Sushi Cho is worth ordering instead of just the Squid Salad or Seaweed Salad.

Keep up with Sushi Cho on Facebook.

Sushi Lounge

4802 S. Sixth Ave.
Poki Salad at Sushi Lounge (Credit: Shana Gegantoca)

Poki Salad at Sushi Lounge (Credit: Shana Gegantoca)

For another affordable ($8.25) similarly-styled Poki Salad further south, check out Sushi Lounge. Chopped sashimi, cucumber, radish, seaweed, and squid salad are mixed with ponzu sauce.

For more information, visit sushiloungeaz.com.

Sushi on Oracle

6449 N. Oracle Rd.
Mini-poke at Sushi on Oracle (Credit: Jackie Tran)

Mini-poke at Sushi on Oracle (Credit: Jackie Tran)

While poke isn’t officially on the menu, chef Tommy Begay can whip up a special poke upon request. To indulge in a special meal, sit at the sushi bar and order omakase, which is essentially the chef’s choice for the entire meal.

For more information, visit sushionoracle.net.

Where’s your favorite poke in Tucson? Let us know in the comments.

Jackie is a food writer and photographer native to Tucson. He loves corgis and still thinks rickrolling is funny. If you'd like to stalk him, visit jackietran.com.
  • Prickly Pear

    The standard for comparison is Ishihara Market in Kauai. Wonder if any of these places can measure up …

  • Sam

    Everyone knows the islands best poke is at Tamura’s on Oahu. Oh boy is it amazing.

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