The Must-Visit Food Carts In Portland, Oregon

| Photo by James Sutton on Unsplash
Alexia Wulff

Portland’s culinary scene is legendary. Famed for its food truck revolution, Portland is taking mobile eating to the next level. The city has over 600 food carts, serving anything from Peruvian chicken to Mexican mole. We discover the ten must-visit food carts for delicious food on the go.

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Güero is all about the torta – a classic Mexican street food sandwich made with crusty, white bread. From the handmade tortillas to the bold Yucatan flavors, Güero is not to be underestimated. Go for the cochinita pibil torta – slow-roasted, shredded pork with cilantro aioli, cabbage, avocado, and cheese. There’s also $2 tacos on house-made tortillas and ‘bolos’, bowls with rice, beans, and meat.

Nong’s Khao Man Gai

Nong’s Khao Man Gai is one of Portland’s most talked about food carts – the only dish offered, Khao Man Gai, is a classic Thai street food made of poached chicken and chicken-broth-steamed rice; though, locals will agree that there’s no need for anything else on the menu. It’s served with pungeon sauce, a fermented soy bean sauce, vegetables, cucumbers, cilantro, and a clear soup. For the adventurous, chicken livers are available as an addition.

Aybla Grill

Don’t be fooled by the unassuming food cart chain, Aybla Grill. As one of the first food carts in Portland, Chef Saied still holds the title of the best gyro in town. Most of the produce is organic, and from local farmers, and the feta, olives, and pita come straight from the Mediterranean region. Go for the lamb gyro: tzatziki, onion, parsley, tomato, and feta cheese wrapped in grilled pita.


Ever had a schnitzelwich? Here’s your chance: Tábor, specializing in the fried-and-breaded pork sandwich, brings homestyle Czech cuisine to Portland. Soups, vegetarian items, and other traditional dishes like goulash and dumplings are on the menu; but, the Original Schnitzelwich is why diners are raving about this spot: breaded pork (or, chicken), lettuce, paprika aioli, sautéed onion, and horseradish in a ciabatta roll.

Bing Mi!

French crepe, who? Bing Mi! is changing the crepe scene with the Jian Bing, a dish from the villages of Northern China – a savory, grilled crepe stuffed with scrambled egg, black bean paste, chili sauce, pickled vegetables, green onion, cilantro, and a crispy rice cracker. Breakfast or lunch, the Bing holds no bounds.

Kingsland Kitchen

Kingsland Kitchen is British-inspired food cart serving up ridiculous brunch and lunch meat-focused sandwiches, along with their famous Full English All Day Breakfast, which is said to be the best in town – two English pork bangers, a ton of applewood-smoked bacon, tomatoes, sautéed mushrooms, Heinz beans, two fried eggs, and HP sauce piled high on a white, crusty roll. Other favorites include any of the English muffin sandwiches, the Mumbai-spiced chicken sandwich, and Guinness-braised beef sandwich.

The Frying Scotsman

The Frying Scotsman, started by a Scotland-born chef, is Portland’s go-to ‘chippy’ – battered-and-fried fish ‘n’ chips, haggis, mushy peas, and other classic British dishes, served Scottish-style. The tartar sauce and coleslaw are made in-house daily, along with the locally sourced, hand-cut potatoes; the fish is sourced from Pacific Seafood and the bangers from Zenner’s. Go for the Haddock and Chips, a Scottish specialty, and don’t forget the deep-fried Mars bar.

Kim Jon Grillin’

Kim Jon Grillin’ is Korean BBQ at its finest – Jhapchae, Bulgogi, and Galbi, Korean-style short ribs, are all on the menu here, served in a brown to-go box; though, the crowd pleaser is the Bibim Box. Served with your choice of Korean BBQ over Jhapchae (Korean noodles) or steamed rice and a fried egg, the Bibim packs a punch – and, not to mention, it’s the ultimate hangover cure.

Hot Box BBQ

Started by BBQ master Abbie Rhoads, Hot Box BBQ is a modern American BBQ cart serving up house-smoked meats, hand-crafted sauces, and mean Southern side dishes. Go for the Volcano – smoked pulled pork, house-made jalapeño pepper jelly, crispy onions, lettuce, and Sriracha aioli on a brioche bun; or, opt for the Maui Wowie with smoked pulled pork, pineapple, pickled red onion, lettuce, mayo, and homemade peach BBQ sauce on a brioche bun. Note: tofu is available for the non-meat eaters.

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