- Rachel Nipper
Both Austin and Houston, Texas, are major hubs for delicious and inventive food trucks and street food vendors. Food trucks can be found in myriad places all over these two large cities. Read our guide below to discover 10 of the most creative and flavorful food trucks to visit in eclectic Austin and Houston.
Gourdough’s Big. Fat. Donuts.
Gourdough’s Big. Fat. Donuts. is an Austin classic and people all over the United States make sure to visit Gourdough’s on their trips to the south. It is difficult to choose between Gourdough’s variety of options, each with an eclectic, quirky name fitting for Austin. Try the Mother Clucker (with a fried chicken strip and honey butter), the Flying Pig (with bacon and a maple syrup icing), the Son of a Peach (cinnamon, a sugar and cake mix topping and a peach filling), the infamous Black Out (brownie batter, chocolate-covered brownie bites and fudge icing) or make your own. Add a scoop of ice cream or wash it down with milk, coffee or Topo-Chico mineral water to cleanse your palate for each sweet bite.
Gourdough’s Big Fat Donuts, 1503 South 1st St., Austin, TX, USA, +1 512 707 1050
The Mighty Cone
The Mighty Cone is by far one of the freshest, most delicious food trucks in Austin. The concept behind The Mighty Cone was conceived in 2002, when the city’s famous Austin City Limits Music Festival requested that chef Jeff Blank create a festival food that symbolized Austin gastronomy. The Mighty Cone’s food truck serves its Hot ‘n’ Crunchy breading surrounding an assortment of foods (such as chicken, avocados, shrimp, venison or pork), coupled with mango-jalapeno slaw, ancho sauce and a tortilla. The original Mighty Cone meal is the hot and crunchy chicken cone – a chicken tender in almonds, sesame seeds, corn flakes, chili flakes and other seasonings with slaw and sauce. The Mighty Cone’s menu also offers burgers, shakes (including an espresso flavor), floats, fries, cheese sticks, pickles and dessert (a brownie – in a cone, of course).
The Mighty Cone, 1720 Barton Springs Rd., Austin, TX, USA, +1 512 383 9609
The idea behind Kebabalicious began when two Texan college students traveled to Zurich, Switzerland, and observed the local love of the street food doner kebabs. They brought this passion back to Austin and, with the use of high quality organic ingredients and homemade sauces, created the Kebabalicious food truck known and loved by locals and visitors alike (as well as Jimmy Kimmel). Kebabalicious kebabs include beef/lamb (mixed shawarma with lettuce, red onions, tomatoes, a spicy red sauce and tzatziki), chicken and falafel (garbanzo bean vegetarian fried balls with a spicy red sauce and hummus). The menu also offers ‘kebabafries’ (potatoes with zatar seasoning, red sauce, feta, crushed red peppers and parsley) or a Turk salad. Kebabalicious also offers a variety of specialty items, including the ‘falafel shot’ (falafel with Kebabalicious’ specialty sauce), zucchini fries and baklava.
Kebabalicious, 621 Congress Ave., Austin, TX, USA, +1 512 394 6562
Hey Cupcake!, which encourages you to ‘never stop vanilla dreamin”, is a cultural and foodie icon of Austin, Texas. The original silver airstream trailer resides permanently on South Congress Avenue, although there are six more locations throughout the city. Hey Cupcake! serves a variety of ‘100 per cent non-fat free goodness’ – cupcakes with ice cream and seasonal or holiday variations (such as the LuvCake, chocolate cake with strawberry cream cheese icing) offered in certain locations throughout the year. Traditional Hey Cupcake! menu items include the ‘vanilla dream’ (vanilla cake with vanilla buttercream icing), the standard (vanilla cake with chocolate buttercream icing), red velvet, the Michael Jackson (chocolate cake with cream cheese icing), the ‘double dose’ (chocolate cake with chocolate buttercream icing) and the ‘sweetberry’ (strawberry cake with strawberry cream cheese icing).
Hey Cupcake!, 1511 South Congress Ave., Austin, TX, USA, +1 512 476 2253
Cow Tipping Creamery
Cow Tipping Creamery is a unique soft serve food truck located in Austin that believes it’s ‘time for soft serve to evolve.’ With unusual toppings, incredible soft serve and fresh ingredients such as crushed nuts, coffee, fresh herbs and fruit purees, Cow Tipping Creamy is the place to go when craving something sweet and delicious. At Cow Tipping Creamery, choose from an assortment of cones, shakes and stackers (a stacked sundae). Cones include the ‘shag’ (with pomegranate molasses, sweet lemon and toasted coconut) and the ‘high tea’ (with English lemon curd, honey dust and crushed tea biscuits), all served in a handmade waffle cone (or try the specialty pretzel cone). Try the From Texas, with Love stacker (with Dr. Pepper cherry sauce, pecans and toffee bark) or the Guinness shake (with a Guinness reduction, dark chocolate sauce, gingersnap cookies and homemade whipped cream).
Cow Tipping Creamery, 2512 Rio Grande St., Austin, TX, USA, +1 512 538 4039
Chi’lantro, home of the ‘original kimchi fries’ (crispy fries topped with caramelized kimchi, cheddar and Monterrey jack cheese, cilantro, onions, sesame seeds, sriracha and a magic sauce), is an incredible place to dine on delectable Asian cuisine. All of Chi’lantro’s entrees come with a choice of protein, including soy glazed chicken, tofu, spicy chicken and rib-eye or pork bulgogi. Chi’lantro’s menu offers tacos (with a soy vinaigrette salad and Chi’lantro salsa), a burger (with a fried egg and magic sauce), the Chi’lantro bowl (with lime-buttered rice and black beans), a quesadilla (with caramelized kimchi) or a burrito. Add to your meal garlic or spicy fries, or try the Ramyun special, Korean shin ramen with choice of meat and fried egg, kimchi, green onions, sesame oil and Korean peppers. Check Chi’lantro’s website for truck locations.
Ms. P’s Electric Cock
The eclectic and eccentric Ms. P’s Electric Cock is a great representation of Austin’s unique style and southern comfort fare. People travel from all over (including Ryan Gosling) for Ms. P’s delicious chicken, locally sourced ingredients and traditional southern gastronomy with a contemporary spin. When visiting Ms. P’s, you may choose from a selection of spicy chicken dishes, served with rolls and jalapeños. Delicious side dishes include truffle macaroni and cheese, ‘farm frites,’ waffles or ‘the Marty’ (grilled Mexican street corn with cotija cheese, pepper, lime and a jalapeño-soaked aioli). Or, try the ‘hen scratch slider,’ chicken tenderloins on a sweet roll with slaw. Ms. P’s offers tacos on either corn or flour tortillas with either red or green sauce and ingredients such as black beans, chorizo, migas, sausage, chicharron and bacon, among others.
The Waffle Bus
At The Waffle Bus, choose from delightful savory or sweet sandwiches, waffle ‘fryders’ or buttermilk fried chicken wings, amongst other delicious menu items. Try the ‘buttermilk fried chicken and waffle’ sandwich (with a choice of spicy mayo, buffalo ranch, honey mustard or ancho chile honey sauce) or chicken and waffle ‘fryders’ (buttermilk fried chicken fry sliders with a special sauce). For a truly delightful menu item, check out the ‘sweet waffle sandwiches’ section, which includes dishes such as the Nutella and banana sandwich with sweet cream, the strawberry Irish cream crème brulee sandwich with caramelized raw sugar, the ‘smores’ sandwich (with a chocolate ganache, toasted marshmallows and a graham cracker crumble) and the chocolate covered strawberries sandwich with whipped cream. Check The Waffle Bus’ website, Facebook or Twitter for truck locations.
Coreanos is a Mexican/Korean fusion food truck (‘Mexican cuisine with Korean in between’) located in Houston, offering contemporary twists on Korean-inspired dishes. Try the ‘Coreanos dog,’ a bacon-wrapped frank with caramelized kimchi and a special Coreanos sauce, the ‘kim cheese fries’ or one of Coreanos’ tacos, complete with deliciously flavored meat, delectable slaw and a zesty hit of lime. Other delicious menu items include fries topped with marinated chicken, beef short rib, cilantro, cheese, grilled onions and pork belly, Korean barbecue tacos, pork belly tacos, the ‘loco pollo’ burrito and a variety of hot dogs. Locals herald the ‘Og Burrito’ (with bulgogi beef, cabbage and French fries) and the spicy ‘el scorcho’ sauce. To find out where the Coreanos truck plans to visit, check out Coreanos’ Twitter for truck locations.
Discover the charming orange Ladybird bus in Houston, Texas, for a delightful dining experience and delicious, fresh food. Although Ladybird’s menu is seasonal, the food truck offers a variety of hotdogs, sandwiches, tacos and sides. Try the ‘Ladybird grilled cheese,’ with green tomatoes, Texas cheddar cheese, Texas goat cheese, Brooklyn ricotta cheese and a pickled okra remoulade, or the ‘yardbird,’ with a fried chicken breast, rosemary jam, Swiss cheese, kewpie mayo and sweet pickles. Tacos at Ladybird include the ‘aloo’ (with potatoes, queso fresca, chives and a creamy cilantro-mint sauce) and the chicken tikka, and Ladybird’s menu also offers hotdogs, such as the kimchi dog or the Tokyo dog (bacon-wrapped frank with smoked goat cheese, cucumber, jalapeno and unagi sauce). Ladybird’s sides include the kimchi tots and the truffle tots (with truffle salt and a creamy truffle dipping sauce). Check out Ladybird’s Facebook or Twitter for truck locations.