Food trucks provide the same level of speed and cost efficiency as fast-food restaurants but offer something your average fast-food chain doesn’t: a local chef who is truly passionate about their food.
As the industry continues to evolve, food trucks around the country offer an extensive variety of food truck fare. In the southwestern United States, particularly in Texas and California, food trucks serving Mexican cuisine are incredibly popular. Meanwhile, in the northeast, local Chinese, Thai, Indian, and Vietnamese vendors offer a taste of their culture—without the added airfare.
Whether you’re searching for budget-conscious lunch options or on a mission to support your local chefs, here are five food trucks that are changing the way we eat.
Pico House — Los Angeles, CA
Inspired by the desire to find healthy, satisfying food on the go, Pico House serves filling, nutrient-packed whole grain bowls made with rich meats, flavorful veggies, fresh herbs, and house-made pickles. The Los Angeles chefs behind Pico House are all roommates, and the local favorite gets its name from the chefs’ LA pad.
“Our food is a healthful approach to ultra-satisfying food,” according to the chefs at Pico House. By focusing on high-fiber ancient grains like farro, barley, and spelt, Pico House creates one-of-a-kind grain bowls that satisfy your cravings and leave you feeling energized.
If you’re in the area, be sure to try out their famous Robertson Short Rib bowl, which features Swiss chard, tomato chutney, crispy shallots, and—of course, house-cured beef bacon, pasilla peppers, and broccoli purée—all on top of their special ancient grain mix.
Chile con Quesadilla — Denver, CO
Recognized around the country for its lively food truck scene, Colorado is one of the best states to find authentic Mexican cuisine. At Denver’s award-winning Chile con Quesadilla, you can find eight different quesadillas, four levels of green chile spice, house-made Mexican sweet corn, and the food truck’s signature Sopapilla-Dilla.
As a family-owned business, Chile con Quesadilla was created by Colorado natives Jason and Christina Richardson. The husband and wife team started their food truck business on March 15, 2020—the same week that the global COVID-19 pandemic was declared.
Through perseverance and fresh ingredients, the couple has managed to build a flourishing business during a time that has been difficult on the world, and especially the food industry. To catch Chile con Quesadilla, be sure to follow the food truck’s Facebook page to find out where they’ll be popping up next.
LeRoy and Lewis — Austin, TX
As a local staple, LeRoy and Lewis features an innovative approach to barbecue with a seasonally changing menu of meats sliced to order, including their famous smoked beef chiefs and pulled whole hog.
Since their 2017 grand opening in the lot of Cosmic Coffee + Beer Garden, Evan LeRoy and Sawyer Lewis has remained committed to serving the local community with “new school barbecue.” By combining locally sourced ingredients from local ranches, inventive barbecue, and classic Southern hospitality, the team strives to share their food, experiences, and knowledge with the community.
Funk Seoul Brother — Nashville, TN
Nashville’s popular food truck created by chef B.J. Lofback focuses on Korean street fare—including mouth-watering Korean fried chicken, ramen, and poke. Lofback, a Detroit native with a special talent for creating inventive dishes, infuses his creations with flavors that he is inspired by and appreciative of.
Founded in 2011 as Riffs Fine Street Food, Lofback changed the food truck’s name to Funk Seoul Brother in 2015, focusing on Korean and Japanese street food. Soon after, the food truck was awarded “best new food truck” in Nashville Scene’s 2015 issue.
Lofback was the first to bring dishes like poke bowls, ramen, and sushi burritos to Nashville. “We like to treat rice like the foundational, life giving food that it is,” according to Lofback. With award-winning Korean fried chicken and bibimbap (mixed rice) dishes, adding Funk Seoul to your Nashville itinerary is non-negotiable.
Taïm — New York, NY
With roots as a brick-and-mortar restaurant, Taïm takes Israeli street food to a new level with their new food truck. In recent years, Chef Einat Admony and Stefan Nafgizer, the husband and wife team behind one of New York’s most famous falafel restaurants, transformed Taïm into a mobile, on-the-go experience—and local foodies couldn’t be happier.
The moment Taïm’s food truck made an appearance on the streets of New York, it immediately captured the attention of New Yorkers, winning New York Magazine’s “Best Truck” award, The Village Voice’s “Best Vegetarian Street Foods” award, and many more.
If you’re craving a sandwich or salad, Taïm has got you covered with house-made hummus and falafel—all created with the freshest ingredients. Plus, their refreshing smoothies and unique beverages are sure to wow your taste buds.
Feature image: Unsplash