Gone are the days when you had to go to a full-blown restaurant to get good food. Baltimore is churning out creative, gourmet meals right there on the street. Though this list does not even begin to cover all the notable food trucks in Baltimore—and new ones are popping up all the time—here’s a sampling of the best in healthy, hearty, cheesy, Maryland-y meals. Follow them on Twitter to see when they’re nearby.
The Green Bowl
This Asian/Latin-inspired travelling eatery is green in every sense of the word—its materials are biodegradable and its cuisine is vegetarian-friendly. Omnivores will have plenty of options, with dishes like the bibimbap, piled with veggies and choice of beef bulgogi, lemongrass chicken or pork, or sauteed mushrooms. And the tostones are given some local flavor with Old Bay sauce.
Grilled cheese, an American childhood pastime you never knew could go gourmet, is the specialty of this mobile cafe, along with seafood—namely, creations like the Lobster Cone, a baked tomato basil cone packed with Maine lobster, mac and cheese, and melted cheddar. Add a cup of tomato soup to complete the home-comfort experience when you’re on the go.
This cafe on wheels won multiple awards in 2013, including the mayor’s cup. Noted for its eclectic variety of delicious dishes, Gypsy Queen Cafe also brings a hometown sentimentality with selections inspired and named after local Baltimore neighborhoods. And the menu wouldn’t be complete without mac and cheese in a waffle cone and topped with bacon “bling” (the best kind of bling, obviously).
With 130 flavors on its growing menu and dozens to choose from on any given day, it’s impossible to get bored with Iced Gems’ cupcake creations. Choose from classic favorites or get gutsy with an Apple Maple Bacon or a Raspberry Lemonade cupcake. The not-too-big, not-too-small size of these cupcakes make them perfect for picking one or two or three up at lunch.
The Jolly Pig
This constantly changing menu of culturally diverse tacos holds steady with its pulled pork staples, though the real draw here is the delicious sauces that accompany them. There are barbeque sauces aplenty, with a fan favorite being the Korean barbeque. The best perk is being able to order just one taco for $5, optimal for slowly but surely sampling all they have to offer.
The Chowhound brings all of the flavor and diversity of its parent restaurant Kooper’s Tavern and its award-winning burgers (turkey, veggie, and bison, too). Though offered street-side, it’s more like restaurant-quality food that just so happens to be mobile. Get a burger, grilled just like you like it, with toppings such as avocado slices, grilled onions, and feta. Pair it with sweet potato or classic fries—or go half and half if you’re feeling indecisive.
The Lucky Cup
New to the Baltimore food truck scene, The Lucky Cup’s focus is specialty coffee, ushering in flavors like lavender and butterscotch—and claims to the “filthiest chai alive”—along with classic coffee and tea offerings. The baristas will even combine flavors for you and add extra spice. Expect them to be a frequent fixture in the fall.
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Homemade vegetarian and vegan varieties are what this mobile kitchen is all about. It even plans to offer gluten-free options soon, making it the champion of the food-restricted. Flavor-rich sauces permeate the vegetarian pork and black-bean burgers, among other options.
Hot, steaming soup is the standard fare here. A cup is only $5, which is enough of a reason to stop by, but the soups also happen to be gourmet and can be ordered with grilled cheese or sandwiches. There’s even a sandwich made up of peanut butter, bananas, and bacon!
Woody’s Taco Island
This isn’t your standard taco truck. Woody’s trades traditional beef and chicken for the Caribbean-inspired flavors of ginger-rum steak and Jamaican jerk chicken. And the island influence, with sauces like ancho blood-orange chile, makes its way into Woody’s other food options, including quesadillas, burgers, and salads.
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