Best season to travel to New Zealand

Huhu Grub

When Huhu beetle larvae are eaten with closed eyes, they may be easily confused with buttery chicken

Best time: November–March

Huhu Grub
Huhu Grub
Huhu Grub

Huhu Grubs are the larvae of Huhu beetles, endemic to New Zealand and belong to one of the favorite traditional delicacies. Like a lot of other worms, the larvae look unpleasant at the first sight, but once you bite in, they are said to taste like buttery chicken and their consistency resembles peanut butter.

Huhu Grubs can be found in an old pine forest. They are usually living in old rotting pine tree logs lying on the ground. The indigenous people of the islands used to largely feed on Huhu Grubs. These nourishing worms repeatedly saved the lives of those who once got lost in the bush.

Today the food is still fairly popular among the local Maori population. The specialty is also available during numerous festivals, in particular​ during Hokitika Wildfood Festival that is held annually in mid-March. The best season to try this unusual food is between November and March.

For tourists, trying to eat the larvae is one of the biggest food challenges in New Zealand.

Maori people eat Huhu Grubs raw or fried. It can be fried without oil since the larvae have plenty of natural fat. Locals also use Huhu Grubs as bait for fishing.

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Last updated: by Eleonora Provozin