Chicago, IL

5 of the best food trucks in Chicago

Jennifer Geer

The weather is warming up, and Chicago's food trucks are out in full force.

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Photo by Francisca Alvarez on Unsplash

With indoor dining at limited capacities, food trucks offer an outdoor option of delicious cuisines from around the world. And in Chicago, you can find just about any type of food you have a craving for in a food truck.

It began with the chuck wagon

Though the food truck craze is relatively new, food trucks have been around for a long time. It started in the U.S. with the chuck wagon, invented by Charles Goodnight to feed men on a cattle drive out of Texas. But we can trace the current trend back to Los Angeles in 2008 with Kogi BBQ's Asian-infused tacos.

By 2010, the Southern California Mobile Food Vendors Association was created to protect the rights of food truck owners. And in May of 2010, the National Restaurant Association featured food truck exhibits at its annual convention in Chicago.

And now it's common to find gourmet dining and fine cuisine from these roaming restaurants. With the start of warm weather and the limited options of indoor dining due to Covid restrictions, it's the perfect time to check out a food truck near you.

Aztec Daves

Pickup service: 2300 S Throop Street, Chicago

Aztec Daves offers a standing food truck location along with their roaming trucks. From their standing truck location, they provide delivery and pickup. Featuring authentic Mexican food, lunch specials, and Taco Tuesdays, orders can be placed online for pickup or delivery.

And though his business, like many, took a hit during the pandemic, Ramon Torres, owner of the food truck, could be found delivering free meals to essential workers in Chicago.

Find details on their Twitter page: @Aztec_Daves

The Happy Lobster

Check their website for where they will be next.

Chicago is not known for its lobster rolls, which makes this food truck all the more unique. Since 2014, the Happy Lobster has been serving up lobster rolls on their roaming food trucks around the city. You can get a traditional Maine lobster roll with malt vinegar slaw on the side and a chocolate whoopie pie for dessert.

Find details on their Twitter page: @HappyLobsterCHI

Smoke Daddy Food Truck

Wicker Park and roaming locations

Chicago may not be known for lobster, but it is known for its world-famous barbeque, and Smoke Daddy serves up some of the best in the area. You can currently order online for pickup and delivery from the Wicker Park location, or check out their schedule for their roaming food truck.

Smoke Daddy has been offering live music with their in-house smoked barbeque since 1994. They've been rated as Chicago's best barbeque over the years by multiple food reviewers.

Find details on their Twitter page: @smokedaddytruck

Flo's Kitchen

335 N. Troy, Chicago

Chef Flo Gutierrez wasn't about to let the pandemic force his food truck to shut down. So he rethought his business and moved his truck to a standing location outside of his Avondale home. His famous quesabirria tacos are made by simmering the meat for 12 hours.

If you haven't heard of quesabirria tacos, it's Chicago's latest food obsession filled with shredded meat and cheesy goodness. Gutierrez makes his out of steamed goat instead of the traditional beef you will find at other locations.

Find details on his Instagram and Facebook pages.

Chicago Ice Cream Truck

Check Instagram and Facebook for locations

This list wouldn't be complete without an option to fulfill your sweet tooth. Remember the sweet sound of the ice cream truck heading down your street?

Chicago Ice Cream Truck has brought this childhood nostalgia back to Chicago and the suburbs. And they're available for special events. Chicago Ice Cream Truck has 40 different varieties of ice cream and popsicles available.

Check their website for details.

Find a food truck near you

For more food truck options and to find one near you, you can check out Roaming Hunger's website. Be sure to check social media pages for your favorite food truck for their latest schedule and locations.

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Jennifer covers lifestyle content and local news for the Chicago area.

Chicago, IL
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