Baja Taco Truck
The owners of Baja Taco bring the flavors of SoCal to the masses, serving up San Diego-style tacos, burritos, and tostadas. West Coasters will delight in the California Burrito: fries, steak, guacamole, and sour cream, wrapped up in a flour tortilla.
type: Mexican, Tex-Mex
A mix of Tex-Mex and authentic Mexican, Beantown Taqueria caters the Boston University area, slinging tacos, burritos, tostadas, and more. For something a little lighter, there are two salads available, which can be left as is or topped with steak, shrimp, or fish.
Benny’s Crepe Café
Labeling itself as one of the “original food truckers,” Benny’s Crepe Café offers traditional crepes (Nutella, Smoked Salmon) and unique creations (The “Elvis” is packed with peanut butter, banana, and bacon).
type: Sri Lankan
Curries, samosa, and roti grace the menu of Biryani Park, which serves Sri Lankan cuisine. With a multitude of vegan and meat offerings, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.
Banh Mì, a Vietnamese sandwich loaded with meat and pickled vegetables and heaping piles of cilantro, is transformed into a different beast at this truck. Vegetarians shouldn’t be deterred as they can get theirs sans paté and filled with a soy and paprika marinated tofu.
Bone Daddy’s Burgers
Sometimes you just crave a burger. Well, Bone Daddy’s has you covered. Toppings are anything but ordinary: buffalo sauce, fried celery root, tomato, and basil relish. For vegetarians, there’s the quinoa and black bean burger with cilantro aioli.
Boston’s Baddest Burger and Sandwich Co.
type: Burgers, Sandwiches
Boston’s Baddest Burger means business. Each burger, served on a brioche bun, includes cheese, three toppings, and sauces, with options like homemade garlic aioli and horseradish cream spread, Sweet Baby Ray’s Barbecue Sauce, and Frank’s Hot Sauce.
Over the last few years, French macarons have become all the rage. With good reason. The flavor combinations are limitless and they’re kind of adorable. Outside the usual vanilla and pistachio, Cameo Macaron gets wild and crazy with their crème brulee, PB&J, and lemon tart macarons.
Captain Marden’s Cod Squad
When people come to Boston, one of the culinary delights they seek is fish and chips. Captain Marden’s truck serves up that New England staple, as well as lobster rolls, clam chowder, fried clams, and crab cake sandwiches with sides of crispy fries and creamy coleslaw.
Chicken on the Road
type: Sandwiches, Salads
Skip the fast food joints and get your fried chicken fix at Chicken on the Road. Chicken bites come with your choice of sauce (the chipotle mayo sounds pretty fantastic). One of their regular sandwiches is big enough to fulfill, but if you’re testing your limits, try The Explosion, a “gut busting 24 oz. of [their] chicken cutlets, mozzarella sticks, and French fries jam-packed on a sub roll.”
type: Middle Eastern, Kosher
The Chubby Chickpea brings Middle Eastern fare to the streets, packing fresh pita with your choice of falafel, shawarma, or fried eggplant. It wouldn’t be complete without hummus, Israeli salad, or tabbouleh. For Kosher diners, the Chubby Chickpea is the place to try as they recently received their certification.
When Clover launched back in 2008, vegetarians rejoiced. Here was a spot where they could order anything and not have to worry about it being laced with bacon. The menu hits all the right notes with options like the BBQ Seitan and the Egg and Eggplant sandwiches. When in doubt, you can’t go wrong with their chickpea fritters.
At Compliments, a sandwich isn’t just a sandwich. It’s a way to showcase fresh, seasonal ingredients. Their menu is always changing and they’re committed to utilizing local produce, meats, and bread. Don’t leave without one of their sides: fried cauliflower or hand-cut French fries.
Sometimes our sweet tooth kicks in and the only thing that can tame it is a frosted pastry. Cupcake City provides classic flavors (vanilla, chocolate, lemon) as well as some more playful treats (the Oreo cupcake with an Oreo buttercream frosting, or The Hostess, a take on the childhood favorite, filled with marshmallow cream and topped with chocolate ganache).
Evan’s NY Style Deli
The thought of an enormous pastrami sandwich. A bagel topped with cream cheese. A potato knish. These are the things that will make someone from New York homesick. Evan’s NY Style Deli has all of this and more, including the Corned Beef Reuben, loaded with sauerkraut, Swiss cheese, and Russian dressing on toasted pumpernickel.
Nothing brings out the inner child in all of us like an ice cream sandwich. Frozen Hoagies serves up this summertime staple. The menu varies daily, but with cookie options like Chocolate Peanut Butter and Aztec Chocolate, and Cow Tracks and Salted Caramel ice cream flavors, it’s hard to imagine you could go wrong with any of them.
Their mission is simple: “to transport the street food experience of Asia to the streets of Boston.” They’ve picked some of the best of Korean, Chinese, and Japanese street foods and are serving them up authentically. Braised pork belly steamed buns, ramen in miso broth, and Bi Bim Bop are all on their menu. Wash any of them down with a tall iced bubble tea.
Green Bean Mobile Café
Green Bean Mobile Café was started after its owner was left disappointed by a cup of bad coffee. Instead of complaining, they decided to do something about it. Now they serve organic, fair trade coffee, with a portion of the proceeds donated to Boston’s green initiatives. Pair that with one of their breakfast sandwiches and you’ll have a pretty good start to your day.
If you’re looking for tacos, you’ll need to go searching for another truck. The Latin Spoon prepares other traditional Latin American street food, such as arepas and empanadas. Their specialty is the pata-cone—a cone made of fried plantains that’s stuffed with your choice of meat or vegetables.
Lilian’s Smoking Rack BBQ
Texas born truck owner, Lilian Wang, was missing the BBQ meats she grew up with. So, she took matters into her own hands and began making rubs and sauces, which she uses when preparing Texas beef ribs and pulled pork or chicken sandwiches.
They meet all your BBQ needs at M&M. Ribs? Of course. Brisket sandwich? Yes. Collard greens, mac and cheese, coleslaw? Check. Check. Check.
It’d be hard to miss Makin Jamaican, with their bright orange truck decorated with palm trees. They keep things focused on their menu, offering a chicken curry served over rice and vegetables, jerk wings, and a variety of meat and vegetarian patties (the Jamaican version of an empanada).
Mei Mei Street Kitchen type: Chinese/Fusion website: meimeiboston.com location: Boston twitter: @meimeiboston Mei Mei has been on the road for two years and, in that time, has made quite a name for itself. Started by three siblings, Mei Mei Street Kitchen offers their spin on Chinese food. Everything is made from scratch and they source from local farms. There are some spectacular creations, but you’d be remiss to leave without trying a Double Awesome: two poached eggs, pesto, and Vermont cheddar, packed into a scallion pancake.
Never one to pass up a steam bun? Then you may want to head over to Meng’s Kitchen, a recent addition to the Boston food truck scene. Their baouzi (stuffed buns) are filled with ground pork, cabbage, fresh ginger, and other spices.
Mess Haul (Andover)
Andover native Mark Stout has been in the restaurant scene for a while. Wanting to showcase his style of cooking, Stout opened this cleverly titled food truck. While the menu appears simplistic, his sandwiches, burgers, and sides, all of which are made fresh, are bursting with flavor.
For those residing on the North Shore, there’s Metzy’s, a brand new truck that’s whipping up tacos and burritos in the seaside town of Newburyport. Nothing sounds more satisfying than the slow-braised pork tacos with homemade mango-habenero salsa they have on their menu. Get one of those or their grilled shrimp taco with avocado lime sauce and pico de gallo and head out for a picnic by the water.
type: Asian Fusion
At Momogoose/Sate Grill, pho, ramen, and banh mi, are all available for $6, with your choice of either meat or tofu. Their lunch special seems like a bargain: a full meal, crispy roll, and a drink for $8.
Fresh juice is just what we’ll need when it hits 90 degrees this summer. At Mother Juice, local fruits and vegetables are used to produce organic, cold-pressed drinks. Their seasonal creations are perfect for a muggy day when nothing else can cool us down.
With a cute green monster as their mascot and a tagline proclaiming, “Make way for dumplings!” you definitely don’t expect anything traditional. And while Moyzilla does offer “The Classic,” with pork, napa cabbage, and sesame ginger soy sauce, bite into the “Moyzilla Style” dumplings and you’ll get yourself a blast of cheeseburger (which is served with their “secret sauce”).
Paris Creperie’s La Tour Eiffel
The crepes at La Tour Eiffel are just as clever as their names. Take, for instance, the “Kale ‘n It”—chicken, kale, and a lemon, poppy seed aioli. Looking for something sweet? Go with the “Speculoos,” which combines a rich cookie spread with your choice of fresh fruit.
With an ever changing menu, things never get dull. A selection of sandwiches, salads, and soups made with seasonal produce gives you plenty to choose from. The one constant is their Porchetta sandwich: “An Italian, skin-on roast pork—heavily seasoned, cured, and marinated in herbs and garlic” that’s served topped with vegetables, a seasonal mostarda, lemon juice, and arugula.
Redbones Food Truck
Ribs. Mac and cheese. Coleslaw. An offshoot of the brick and mortar Somerville joint, they’re serving the ultimate in comfort food. Of course, if you’re looking for a meaty sandwich, they have you covered with pulled pork, chicken, or BBQ beef. For Vegetarians, they also offer a poblano mushroom sandwich so no one feels left out.
Renula’s Greek Kitchen
The Renula behind the name of this truck comes from the owner’s mother, who taught him how to cook the food she grew up with on the island of Rhodes in Greece. At his “Greek Kitchen,” one finds a selection of meat pies, falafel sandwiches, souvlaki (grilled skewered meats), and gyros.
Rhythm and Wraps
Tempeh bacon and vegan sausage will remind you that a sandwich without meat doesn’t have to be boring.
Roxy’s Gourmet Grilled Cheese
As Roxy’s says, this isn’t your grandma’s grilled cheese. Maybe the most ordinary (but certainly no less delicious) options are the Three Cheese Melt and the Rookie Melt (cheddar and tomato). But things get wild from there: the Mighty Rib Melt is packed with BBQ braised beef and the Green Muenster (clever name) has guacamole and applewood bacon.
Stationed at the Harvard Medical School, Savory sells noodle and rice creations, with beef, chicken, tofu and seafood options. There are also pot stickers and spring rolls on the menu.
Stoked Wood Fired Pizza Co.
Wood fired pizza to go! What’s not to love? Stoked keeps things interesting with a rotation of toppings, such as mushroom, margarita, Buffalo Brussels sprouts, and spicy sriracha chicken. All of these are prepared in a wood fire oven that’s been installed in their truck!
Sweet Tomatoes Pizza Truck
A spin off of the Lexington-based shop, Sweet Tomatoes Pizza Truck provides pizza and salads to go. Because sometimes all you really want is a quick slice to devour on your way to a meeting.
Often tacos are limited to the meat variety. Not at Taco Party, where everything is vegetarian. Toppings include Buffalo Tempeh, Stewed Seitan, and Marinated Poblano Pepper… all of which would satisfy the most ardent carnivore.
Bubble tea has had a presence in the Boston area for a while. It was only a matter of time before someone would have the brilliant idea to open a truck specializing in this Taiwanese drink. While new to the scene, word is that the lychee green tea is the one to order.
Yes, they’ve nailed the burrito and taco. But the real find at Tenoch are their tortas. Carnitas (pork), chicken, and chorizo sandwiches topped with chipotle mayo, Oaxaca cheese, and avocado.
The Bacon Truck
High school buddies got together and thought about what the greatest food in the world is and, not surprisingly, what they came up with was bacon. Their operation, The Bacon Truck, puts it on everything. Try a bacon hash, Havarti cheese, and fried egg sandwich.Even their desserts have bacon in them!
The Chicken and Rice Guys
The name pretty much says it all. The Chicken and Rice Guys serve up just that: chicken and rice covered in “white sauce.” Add a side of salad and pita and you have yourself one food coma-inducing lunch.
The Cookie Monstah
Sometimes a freshly baked cookie is all we need to hit the spot. And the massive treats from The Cookie Monstah definitely do the trick. On a hot summer day, stop by the truck for one of their monster-sized ice cream sandwiches.
The Cupcakory owner, Diane spent over a year developing the recipe for her cupcakes, which she now sells on her truck, The flavors rotate, depending on the season, and are made with local, organic eggs and dairy, Madagascar Bourbon vanilla, and high quality chocolate.
The Dining Car
Those who have kept up with the Boston food truck scene have probably come across The Dining Car. The Dining Car does sandwiches and salads including a number of truck-made ingredients, many of which are served on freshly baked bread.
type: Hot Dogs
When one thinks about hot dogs, the things that come to mind are ketchup, mustard, relish. Don’t expect this at The Dogfather, Worcester’s only “extreme hot dog” truck, where franks are topped with pepperoni, bacon bits, Jalapeno peppers, and fried onions.
The Pasta Pot
In need of carbs? That’s what The Pasta Pot is all about: macaroni and cheese, pasta with meatballs, macaroni and cheese with meatballs. And, for the pizza lovers out there, fried dough pizza.
The Taco Truck
With roots in New Jersey and New York, The Taco Truck has now made its way to Boston, where it’s slinging tacos and tortas. They’re focused on sustainability, working with local food purveyors and farms, and they compost all of their food waste.
Kabobs are one of the featured foods of the Uyghurs, a Turkic people which live under Chinese rule. Uyghur Kitchen, cooks lamb or chicken kabobs can be consumed on skewers, in a wrap, or on top of a salad.
type: Chinese BBQ
Wow Barbecue (aka BBQ Lamb Brothers) specializes in Chinese barbecued lamb and chicken skewers.
Zo on the Go
Served on soft, warm pita, gyros come in two variations: “Original,” lean pork with tomato, onion, and tzatziki (cucumber-yogurt sauce), or with chicken. Also on the menu are soups, salads, and spanakopita.
This story appeared in the Summer 2014 issue.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Since the 2014 story was published, some of these mobile restaurants have folded, others have gone on to open brick+mortar locations, but many are still in business, a testament to Boston’s enduring food truck culture.
Brian Samuels is a Boston-based food photographer and writer and is the creator of the food blog A Thought For Food (www.athoughtforfood.net). Brian’s work has been featured on Saveur.com, Bon Appetit, The Wall Street Journal, The Huffington Post and Edible Boston. He can be contacted at email@example.com.