A Truly Exhaustive Guide to Austin's Food Truck Parks
From burgers and tacos, to fresh pastas, arepas, and game-changing vegan corn dogs.
Food truck parks are one of Austin’s signatures, right up there with excellent live music, beautiful walking trails, and less-than-stellar traffic lanes. As the fall heads our way, and the weather gets ever so slightly cooler, now more than ever is the time for some blissful outdoor dining.
The best part of food truck parks is the variety they offer. We’ve all been in a conversation or two where you and your friends simply can not decide where to go. Someone wants tacos, sandwiches, or fried chicken. Others can’t choose between barbecue, breakfast tacos, or perhaps some vegan cuisine. Well, food parks can have you covered all in one go. Maybe you woke up late and want breakfast or brunch, but your partner is ready for lunch or dinner. Again, you’re good. Hit up most of these lovely food truck parks, and the problem is solved.
Food truck parks simply have a lot to offer, from venues with mouth-watering chicken wings to satisfyingly sweet donuts—here’s our guide to the best food truck parks in Austin.
The Hungry Yard
Representing Northwest Austin, The Hungry Yard is a nice, inviting area with many string lights and rows of picnic tables. It brings you favorites like gourmet Colombian grill Ninja Chicken, another location of Tex-Mex spot Have a Taco, and Mediterranean joint Habibi Atx.
Must-try food: You’re sure to have a lovely time filling up at Ninja Chicken with their Colombian cheese sticks, Dedos de Queso ($7.50), or their mouth-watering Colombian-style sausage with boiled potatoes, Chorizo Santarrosano (13.65).
The Buzz Mill
Buzz Mill is a community patio, coffee shop, and bar all rolled into one. One of the few venues in town that operate 24/7, they host a ton of regular programming like comedy shows and concerts alongside, of course, plenty of excellent food trucks for you to peruse. Check out Plow-Burger for plant-based burgers; 1776 Cheesesteak Co for—you guessed it—cheesesteaks; the newly opened bagel Joint, Bully Bagel; and JNL BBQ for traditional smoked meats.
Must-try food: You can’t go wrong with the simple but effective order of a half-pound of brisket ($13) from JNL, or the Campfire Burger ($16.25) from Plow-Burger, which features a Beyond burger patty, and crispy fried shoestring onions.
Arbor Food Park
Dog- and BYOB-friendly Arbor Food Park is where you can find gems like Cachitos 512, known for top-notch Venezuelan eats, and Cuantos Tacos, which brings you a superb range of Mexico City street-style tacos. Also on site are the ever-reliable Ali Gyro Halal (12th Street) and well-loved pizza joint Sammataro.
Must-try food: Sammataro’s The Classic Pie ($26) comes with homemade tomato sauce and fresh low-moisture mozzarella, topped off with aged Parm, extra virgin olive oil, and fresh basil. What’s not to love?
Smack-dab in the heart of West Campus and available nearly any time of day, you’ll see dozens of college students flocking to this large collection of quality food trucks. Institutions like chicken and waffle maestro Longhorn Chicken, dessert shop Cold Cookie Co., and hand-made noodle palace Julie’s Noodles lead the pack, followed by at least a half-dozen more options. 26th and Rio is also the birthplace of rising local favorite JP’s Pancake Company, which has blossomed into a legend in its own right.
Must-try food: Check out the Hot Spicy Stew ($11.50) from Julie’s Noodles or hop on the sweet train with JP Pancake Company’s Strawberry Banana Babe ($8.50), white chocolate chip pancakes topped with strawberry syrup, strawberries, and bananas.
28th StrEAT Late-Night Food Court
This multi-restaurant team is another stellar late-night refuge for students and post-collegiate midnight snackers alike. Draws include Halal superstar Abu Omar, the delicious Mango Feliz outpost, Asian food specialist Asian Express, and Queen & King Cafe which offers a variety of savory snacks and sweet treats.
Must-try food: Abu Omar’s Beef Shawarma Over Rice ($13.50) is a well-portioned meal that will definitely hit the spot, and Queen & King Cafe saves the day with refreshing Mangonadas ($8).
Thicket South Austin Food Park
Thicket is a charming food truck park surrounded by nice shady trees and colorful art, complete with a free seed swap box stashed next to their community garden. There are around a dozen trucks on the property, so you’re sure to find something for everyone. Just be sure to check their site to see if your favorite is open. Un Mundo De Sabor is an excellent one-man operated taquero. Song La offers tasty Taiwanese Bento, while The Celia Jacobs Cheesecake Experience,Brooklyn Breakfast Company, and Arti Pasta Italian Food round out the always-fantastic offerings.
Must-try food: The Pork Belly Bento ($14.99) from Song La is a no-brainer, as is the Monthly Housemade Bagel Sandwich ($9.50) from Brooklyn Breakfast Company.
Despite its location off of a fairly busy road, 5000 Burnet has been able to carve out a serene family-friendly escape. Many of the places here offer relatively affordable fare compared to some of the other entries on this list, and without sacrificing any quality. To give you a taste of the many options, there’s the esteemed T-Loc’s Sonoran Style Hot Dogs, Budare’s Venezuelan Food, and Dawa Sushi. There’s also a small playscape and some nicely maintained indoor bathrooms—always a plus.
Must-try food: Kick things off with a bacon-wrapped Sonoran Hot Dog ($7.50) from T-Loc’s, then polish off an order of Dawa Sushi’s Japchae Korean glass noodles ($10)
South First Food Court
As the rest of this list indicates, South First Street is home to a boatload of food truck parks. And if you’re heading up from South Austin, one of the first you’ll encounter is the South First Food Court. This quaint hideaway offers everything from fresh pasta aficionados Il Saporis to the meat-focused TX Shawarma. Other trucks include Manolis, known for badass pastries and ice cream, as well as 747 Burgers and cheekily named farm-to-table specialist The RAD-DISH. And while you’re there, you might as well take a jar of pickles home from Fickle Pickles.
Must-try food: The Tagliatelle Alla Vodka ($13) from Il Saporis is a big hit with locals. And it’s hard to go wrong with a rich scoop of Butter Pecan from Manolis ($5 to $10, depending on size).
Picnic Food Trailer Park
The Picnic sits in close proximity to Barton Springs pool, pairing crowd-pleasing trucks like The Mighty Cone and The Burger Truck with a much-appreciated BYOB policy. Explore resident purveyors like Tex-Mex haven Have a Taco and from-scratch Italian truck Cannone Cucina Italiana. Expect ample parking, lots of shade, and actual restrooms (instead of the requisite port-a-potties). It’s the perfect spot after a long day outdoors in Austin.
Must-try foods: Don’t sleep on Mighty Cone’s Monster Cone ($12), which crams Hot ‘n’ Crunchy chicken, shrimp, avocado, mango-jalapeño slaw, and ancho chili sauce into a pillowy flour tortilla.
Mueller Trailer Eatery
The Mueller Trailer Eats food park is easy to find—just look for the historic Browning Hangar, the structure that serves as a landmark for the former Robert Mueller Municipal Airport. There you’ll find Hey Cupcake!’s dreamy desserts, Conscious Cravings’ mouth-watering vegan wraps, and The Stonehouse Woodfire Grill, which has a surprisingly extensive menu of grilled burgers, toasted sandwiches, pitas, and kebabs, as well as special options just for kiddos.
Must-try food: Treat your sweet tooth to a Mini Assortment ($15) from Hey Cupcake and thank us later.
Ira and Bev's Food Truck Park
Located across the street from El Mercado, this tasty trailer park is where you’ll find another location of Conscious Cravings, where the vegan cuisine never skimps on flavor (or portion size), Tacoly Moly for street tacos, VSpot ATX for filling Venezuelan eats, beloved dessert shop Bananarchy, and Chivata ATX, a gourmet spot with a menu built around goat cheese.
Must-try food: Conscious Cravings’ best-selling wrap is the Spicy Chickpea ($8.79), while the GOATfather ($6.95) from Chivata is an equally great lunch go-to, served on ciabatta and layered with arugula, tomatoes, basil pesto, and, yes, goat cheese.
West Gibson Street Food Trucks
Hardly a stone’s throw away from Ira and Bev’s Food Truck Park, you’ll find yet another gravel lot that’s home to reliably great Little Thai Food, Bombay Dhaba’s comforting Indian cuisine, and the excellent Juanita’s Tacos & More.
Must-try food: Little Thai Food’s Tom Kha ($12.99), a tangy, spicy coconut milk soup, is a great place to start before diving into the fiery Panang Curry ($12.99), served with heat-tempering white rice.
East 11th Street
Spread across a a full square block near East 11th and Lydia street, this vibrant food truck hub strewn with murals and a whopping ten or so game-changing kitchens bound to satisfy the whole crew. The unique lineup includes the island-style Tony’s Jamaican Food, Detroit-inspired Delray Cafe inside Nickel City, Micklethwait Craft Meats’ Texas-style barbecue, Cosmic Taco for “out of this world” tacos, and the aptly titled vegan joint, Community Vegan.
Must-try food: Delray Cafe’s double slider with cheese ($5.43), stacked with twin patties and grilled onions on a steamed bun, is a carnivore’s dream, while Micklethwait Craft Meats’ Brisket Frito Pie ($13.50) nips at its meaty heels. Elsewhere, Community Vegan’s handspun dairy-free shake ($9) and Beer Battered Cauli Chikn Sandwich ($14.25) stand in confidently for the animal-based originals.
One of the most bustling late-night destinations in town, Rainey Street hosts a giant roster of great eats. There’s colorful mini-donut hotspot Little Lucy’s, the seafood wizards Happy Lobster Truck, and no-fuss Mexican joint Wild Taco. Four Brothers Venezuelan churns out killer arepas, Tommy Want Wingy fries up some of the best wings in town, and Burro Cheese Kitchen dishes out some next-level grilled cheese sandwiches. And the fun doesn’t stop there—there’s also Wrigleyville Dogs, turkey burger specialists Gobble Gobble, the dumpling-fueledMonk’s Momo, hearty sandwich suppliers Big Fat Greek Gyros, and so much more.
Must-try food: Big Fat Greek Gyros’ big-enough-for-two Hercules gyro ($8.21), stuffed with tender and juicy lamb, beef, or chicken, romaine hearts, tomato, onion, green peppers, oregano, and French fries is always a sure-fire bet. Tommy Want Wingy’s five-piece, Garlic Parmesan wings, or the super-spicy Ranch on Fire wings ($12.75) will also please, while Little Lucy’s Chow Chow Mini Donuts ($7), a set of 12 warm donuts served with a range of decadent dipping sauces, ably brings up the rear.
Jade Fabello is a contributor for Thrillist.