The 22-year-old star told MTV News that she is pleased that the Disney film trilogy remains popular with young girls.
"Every now and then a little girl will run up to me and give me a big hug and call me Gabriella," Hudgens said. "It's really sweet."
She continued: "I think [Gabriella] was a really great character to play so if [fans] remember me by that, then it's okay."
Hudgens was only 16 years old when she starred opposite ex-boyfriend Zac Efron in the original High School Musical. The pair later returned for a further television movie and a feature film adaptation in 2008.
The actress will next appear with Jena Malone and Emily Browning in director Zack Snyder's Sucker Punch, which debuts on March 25 in the US and on April 1 in the UK.
> Follow @dsatthemovies on Twitter for our latest movie news, reviews and interviews