The South African notched the decisive goal just seconds after being introduced by manager Roberto Martinez, whose side sit fifth in the Premier League, four points behind Arsenal
Kevin Mirallas gave the hosts the lead in the first half with a low shot that beat an unsighted Allan McGregor, but Yannick Sagbo hit back to equalise before half-time.
However, Steven Pienaar scored the winner just 10 seconds after being introduced as a second-half substitute to send Roberto Martinez's side into the top six.
|VIEW FROM GOODISON PARK
|By Gary Maiden
Everton got back to winning ways with a hard fought 2-1 victory over Hull City as they kept pace with the early league leaders.
Goals from Mirallas and the returning Pienaar sealed the three points for the Merseyside outfit with many of the sides around them dropping points.
It was far from a vintage display from the Toffees and Hull made them work hard for their victory, but these are the sort of games that they were drawing under David Moyes last season.
With so many managerial changes at the top of the table this summer, the door is open for an unfancied side to break into the top four.
Everton’s early season form suggests that it could be them.
Gareth Barry returned to Everton's midfield, having missed the defeat to Manchester City due to the terms of his loan deal, while Hull were boosted by top-scorer Robbie Brady's comeback from a hernia.
Curtis Davies headed an early corner over for the visitors while Romelu Lukaku tested McGregor, and it was Everton who took the lead just nine minutes in.
A corner from the left was worked to Mirallas on the edge of the area and the Belgian's low shot creeped in at the near post past McGregor, who made no attempt to keep the ball out with his view blocked by a congested penalty area.
As Hull worked their way back into the contest, Abdoulaye Faye twice headed over from corner kicks.
The visitors' pressure paid off on the half-hour though, as Sagbo, who had replaced the injured Danny Graham, netted his first Premier League goal.
Sone Aluko burst past Leighton Baines down the right flank and cut the ball back to Sagbo, eight yards out, and the Ivorian firmly side-footed past Tim Howard to level the scores.
Aluko showed no ill-effects of a crunching tackle from the already-booked Gareth Barry to assist the goal and twice went close in the dying stages of the half, looping a deflected effort over before his close-range header was nudged clear by Baines.
After a quiet start to the second half, Everton regained their lead with Pienaar making a perfect introduction after replacing Leon Osman on 57 minutes.
A long ball from Howard was flicked into Mirallas by Lukaku and the Belgian tore up the right wing before crossing to an unmarked Pienaar, who flicked home neatly with his first touch of the game.
Faye again proved a threat from set-pieces for the visitors when he met Huddlestone's corner, but Barry was on hand to clear away, while Davies went close from the following delivery, nodding wide.
Everton should have put the game to bed with 10 minutes to go, but Arouna Kone inexplicably crashed an effort against the post when one-on-one, before bringing a smart save out of McGregor later on.
That mattered little, though, as Everton kept Hull at arm's length to secure three hard-earned points.