Austin may not be where food trucks started, but it holds its own against the originators like Portland and LA. In fact, Outside Magazine, amongst others, has named Austin the top city for food trucks, and it finds itself on many lists celebrating excellent food trucks. You can find just about any type of food, whether fusion or classic, dinner or dessert parked somewhere in Austin. These are some of Austin’s favorite trucks to try treats.
Hawaii Nei Cafe Poke has managed to become one of Austin’s “it” dishes the past couple of years, and not everyone knows what they’re doing when it comes to true, Hawaiian poke. Hawaii Nei is different — they are owned and operated by Hawaiians from Oahu, serving simple menu items. In addition to their traditional, straightforward poke from quality ahi, they offer a vegetarian version, Hawaiian BBQ, and even butter mochi.
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From island fare to hearty mountain food, Monk’s Momo brings hearty Himalayan food to Rainey Street in the form of pork, beef, and veggie dumplings. Nepalese and Tibetan foods aren’t that easy to find, especially done quite this well.
Veracruz All Natural
It’s hard to go wrong with these tacos, no matter the time of day, and Veracruz is a very popular spot amongst locals (so plan to be in line for just a bit). Find them at their five locations around Austin and Round Rock, with menus catered to the needs of each location. Regardless of the particular menu, you’re guaranteed to find really, really good food.
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Garbo’s Lobster Truck
Classic lobster rolls and clam chowder may not sound like something you’re likely to find done well in land-locked Austin, but Garbo’s Lobster Truck manages to surprise its visitors with fresh, yummy fare. You can find their New England food with an Austin twist all over town, as they keep on the move. Weekly schedules for their two trucks are listed on their website.
The Picnic Austin
If you just can’t choose amongst one of these favorites, or you’re in a big group with a lot of tastes, you’ll want to try one of Austin’s best food truck parks. The Picnic stands on Barton Springs Road, a favorite spot amongst Barton Springs Pool swimmers, it hosts Hey Cupcake, Coat and Thai, and The Mighty Cone, amongst others (though they do rotate), and it appeals to a wide variety of tastes.
Though you’ll need to enter through Rainey Street’s Container Bar, Golden Tiger is worth the effort to park and find this small truck tucked away in the bar. Here you’ll find Asian twists on classic comfort foods, done really, really well. A char siu pork sandwich with a side of szechuan fries makes for a yummy and memorable meal.
Arlo’s Arlo’s food trailer maintains a simple menu with limited options so that they can do each and every one of them really well. Each menu item is 100% plant based, but once you bury your face into their version of a bacon cheeseburger, you’ll forget how healthy and harmless vegan eating can be. Add a side of fries, tots, or sweet potato fries to your burger (or tacos) and you’ll be enjoying a nice food coma soon.
Cajun food lovers need to add Baton Creole to their list of food trucks to try, as this pink painted wagon is not only delicious, but fun. Gumbo, etoufee, and a variety of specials make up their menu, but it’s the jambalaya baton (on a stick) that inspired their name and embodies their food. There’s even a vegan version made with spicy tofu!
Micklethwait Craft Meats
It’s hard to imagine that some of Austin’s best barbecue comes from a food trailer, but that’s definitely the case, thanks to Micklethwait Craft Meats. All of their meats, sauces, sides, and condiments are prepared in-house every day, including brisket, sausage, and barbacoa, as well as lemon poppy slaw, jalapeno cheese grits, and beet salad.