DC food trucks. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel

8 Great Washington, DC Food Trucks

8 Great Washington, DC Food Trucks, first published 19 April 2017

A little over a year ago I completed a work assignment in Washington, DC. Every weekday I rode into the big city, did some work, and anticipated lunch.

Working at Union Station, a magnificent building (go visit!), several quick bite places inside the building tempted me but almost every day I went outside because of the food trucks. Less than two blocks away from Union Station, every weekday, food trucks start lining up between 10:30 and 11:15. Typically at 11:30, DC food trucks open their doors to the hungry government and private sector cubicle dwellers (like I was).

Most days I would window shop the offerings. Oh, look, there is a Laotian truck. Or, hmmm, will I try Ethiopian food today? Every day was like a mini trip around the world.

On the other hand, most DC food trucks also stick to a schedule. The lasagna truck appears every Tuesday and the lobster roll truck (yes, lobster rolls!) shows every other Thursday.

Near Union Station is not the only place to find food trucks in DC. More than five food trucks usually congregate around McPherson Square, L’Enfant Plaza, and Metro Center. Work days are also not the only time for food trucks in Washington, DC. Food trucks love visiting the many festivals and wherever crowds are on the weekends.

McCool Travel tip: When visiting Washington, DC, check the Food Truck Fiesta website or mobile app for real-time automated tracking of DC food trucks.

8 Great Washington, DC Food Trucks

Below are some of my favorite DC food trucks. Since our tastes are different, certainly your favorites will be different from mine. Heck, some of these DC food trucks might even be closed down by the time you read this article. So check Food Truck Fiesta website or app.

Washington DC food trucks. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel

very colorful food truck in Washington, DC

Red Hook Lobster Truck

For a special treat, I love lobster rolls. The product is more expensive than other food trucks but IT IS LOBSTER. Red Hook lobster rolls are served in two styles, Connecticut and Maine. Maine style lobster has a little mayo while Connecticut, my preference, has butter.

DC food trucks: Red Hook Lobster Pound

Red Hook Lobster Pound food truck

DC food trucks: Red Hook Lobster Pound

Red Hook Lobster Pound: Connecticut style lobster roll

Lemongrass

I am amazed I can get high quality and delicious Vietnamese food from a food truck. Lemongrass’ Bahn Mi sandwich is outstanding.

DC food trucks: Lemongrass. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel

Lemongrass food truck

Basil Thyme

Gourmet lasagna, huge portions, fuhgedabudit.

DC food trucks: Basil Thyme. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel

Basil Thyme food truck

DC food trucks: Basil Thyme. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel

lasagna from Basil Thyme

Pho-Bachi

Believe it or not, the weather in Washington, DC is not always perfect. Luckily, many food trucks operate into the late Brrrs (November and December) when I felt like having Pho pretty much every day. Another food truck I often got Pho from is Phonation.

DC food trucks: Pho Bachi. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel

Pho Bachi food truck

El Fuego

Latin food trucks dominate the DC food truck scene. The Pollo Saltado from El Fuego is at least two meal portions, yet I somehow usually finish it off myself.

DC food trucks: El Fuego. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel

El Fuego food truck

DC Pollo

The Peruvian style chicken with veggies, rice, and plantains from DC Pollo is a great food truck lunch.

DC food trucks: DC Pollo Peruvian chicken. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel

DC Pollo Peruvian chicken food truck

DC food trucks: DC Pollo Peruvian chicken. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel

DC Pollo Peruvian chicken

Jerks of the Caribbean

Caribbean food trucks also appear among the DC food trucks. Besides amazing jerk chicken from Jerks of the Caribbean, one of the best Cuban sandwiches I ever ate was from a Puerto Rican food truck (Borinquen).

DC food trucks: Jerks of the Caribbean. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel

Jerks of the Caribbean food truck

DC food trucks: Jerks of the Caribbean. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel

Jerks of the Caribbean food truck

dessert: Dolci Gelati

Might as well get dessert from food trucks, too. In addition to the Dolci Gelati truck, other DC food trucks specialize in cookies, ice cream, crepes, and doughnuts (and fried chicken).

DC food trucks: Dolci Gelati. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel

Dolci Gelati food truck

While waiting for food, some DC food trucks even entertain and educate.

DC food trucks. Article and photo by Charles McCool for McCool Travel

Hindi lesson on DC food truck


Are you a food truck fan? What are your favorite DC food trucks?

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Eating at Washington DC food trucks is like taking a trip around the world. Choose from Asian, Latin, African, American, & fusion. And dessert food trucks!

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12 Responses to “8 Great Washington, DC Food Trucks”

  1. Sue Reddel April 28, 2017 at 2:51 pm #

    I’d go just for that yummy looking lobster roll! Nice post.

    • McCoolTravel (@CharlesMcCool) April 28, 2017 at 9:10 pm #

      Thank you, Sue. I definitely think I need to research food trucks in the Windy City and, of course, require a guide.

  2. Carole Terwilliger Meyers April 25, 2017 at 9:56 pm #

    I didn’t know D.C. has food trucks. My favorite is the lobster roll and the Peruvian chicken. Hope I can find them on my next visit!

  3. Michele Peterson (A Taste for Travel) April 24, 2017 at 1:12 pm #

    A lobster roll truck? I wish it would make a detour and come to Toronto

  4. travelnwrite April 24, 2017 at 12:36 am #

    Great post – I’ve not been to DC in a couple of years, but will definitely check out the food trucks next time!

  5. Sarah Stierch April 21, 2017 at 11:54 am #

    Wow, there are so many more food trucks in DC than there were when I lived there!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. 8 Great Surprising Things to See in Washington DC • McCool Travel - November 11, 2017

    […] you can find great food all over Washington, DC, food trucks are something DC does very well. On most weekdays, you can find a dozen food trucks near Union […]

  2. 8 Great Fun Places to Visit in Washington DC • McCool Travel - August 10, 2017

    […] Find your own off the beaten path places to eat in Washington DC along H Street Corridor, many other cool neighborhoods, or among the food trucks. […]

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