The American Food Truck craze has really taken off in South Africa, and followers now have a fab range of food vans from which to choose, serving anything from boerie rolls, burgers and bunny chows to Banting-friendly fare.
Tutto Food Co
Tutto Foods, run by husband-and-wife team, Clementine and Daniel Forsthofer, can be spotted putting around Joburg in a bumble-bee-coloured VW Kombi bus. They offer a range of dishes, such as a colourful and generous paella laden with luxurious seafood, and tasty, Bedouin-style flat breads filled with marinated chicken, smoky baba ganoush and pomegranate molasses. Find them at Market on Main and Neighbourgoods Market, though special functions are also listed on their website.
The best, authentic Serbian burgers in town. From humble beginnings in food markets, this unique and utterly delicious burger has certainly made its mark on many a Joburger’s palate. Their offering is simple: a hand-pounded beef patty in a soft sesame bun, topped with a liberal lashing of spicy red pepper relish and the option of a mozzarella and Kashkaval cheese blend to top it all off. Catch them in the Balkan bus at the Neighbourgoods Market, The Sheds@1Fox, the Fourways Farmers’ Market, and occasionally at the Joburg (and also Pretoria) Market on Main, as well as various food festivals. Follow them at @BalkanBurgerBar on Twitter and on Facebook.
Hovering in Johannesburg’s main business hubs during the week, and at various events and festivals on the weekend, StrEAT Cuisine changes its menu from winter to summer, and uses only fresh, seasonal and local ingredients – even their coffee is organic. Give them a try for wholesome lunches and delectable desserts. Follow them at @streatcuisinesa on Twitter and on Facebook.
Black Sam Smoque
For authentic, American-style barbeque, Black Sam Smoque is a tasty alternative for braai-crazy South Africans. The meat (which includes ribs, chicken, brisket and pork) is smoked for up to 12 hours in an imported authentic smoker before it is transformed into a range of sandwiches and meals. Hunt them down at The Sheds@1Fox (they’ve since ditched their truck for a permanent space here), though you can also catch them at various festivals. Follow them at @blacksamsmoque on Twitter and on Facebook.
Longtom offers a variety of American-style comfort food like hotdogs, boerie rolls, steak rolls, and lamb on the spit – except that they’ve “zhooshed” up all their offerings, so the boerie roll, for example, boasts rocket, Boerewors, poached pear, blue-cheese sauce, and glazed pecan nuts. They have a permanent spot on the corner of 11th avenue and Marie road in Parkmore, Sandton, though you can also find them at various sports events and festivals in the city. Follow them at @LongtomFoods on Twitter and on Facebook.
Down To Earth
The Down to Earth Farm Feasts Truck aims to reconnect people with the origins of food. Thus, itt goes without saying that they focus on seasonal and local produce. The food truck tends to pop up on various farms in and around the city, where they set up and create a spectacular dining experience, be it in a greenhouse, a strawberry patch or a garden that overlooks the bustling city. Follow them on Facebook for more.
Full of Beans
Premium coffee just tastes better out of a three-wheeled Vespa – a retro-chic Piaggio-TriVespa scooter to be exact. Brazilian-born Marcio Mordoh, the man behind the concept, has big plans for his mobile coffee company, which offers delicious coffee as well as a range of sweet treats. Follow them at @FullofBeans_SA on Twitter and on Facebook.
Knickerbocker Ice Cream Company
The Knickerbocker Ice Cream Company serves traditional ice cream from an impressive pop-up parlour – South Africa’s first. With 10 flavours of artisanal gelato, sorbet and frozen yoghurt (Bulgarian; all-natural ingredients), real dairy soft-serve ice cream, a wide range of ice cream sundaes, waffles and milkshakes, this truck will certainly make you feel like a kid again. Catch them at various festivals and markets, their ice cream Wednesdays at Fourways Gardens Residential Estate, or at their Fourways Mall store. Follow them on Facebook for more information.
Shelly Manning cooks gourmet food for the soul, and Hot Ginger offers a selection of foods, including American, Chinese, French, Moroccan and vegetarian. Expect anything from coq au vin with baby potatoes and vegetables, to cheesy grilled mushroom steak with salad. Although the menu changes frequently there are some favourites, such as the pulled pork and coleslaw. Hot Ginger mostly hangs around the Melville area, but you can check out their Facebook page for info on their latest location and menu.
Inspired by a fictional character from the much-loved Hansa Pilsener advertisement, Miles Kubheka made Vuyo’s dream a reality. Serving what he calls “real South African chow” Miles works from a white and red VW Kombi with a flip-back top. Try the bunny chow, marinated chicken wings, or ‘pimped up’ boerewors rolls (Air Wors 1), which come smothered in a top-secret sauce. Find them at events and private functions, or visit their Braamfontein store. Follow them at @Real_Vuyo on Twitter or on Facebook for more.
Struggling to find a food truck near you? Follow Mother Truckers on Facebook to get the lowdown on food truck gatherings and events. They’re an association for food trucks in Joburg, helping driving the food truck revolution.
The team at Taco Kombi focus on delivering fresh, delicious Mexican food. Expect a range of tacos, burritos and delectable jalapeño poppers. Find them at the Hazel Food Market every Saturday, and at various other markets and festivals in and around Pretoria.
Pink Waffle Cabin
If you’re looking for traditional Belgian waffles served with a variety of toppings or on a stick (yes, really), Pink Waffle Cabin will not disappoint. Find them at the Hazel Food Market every Saturday and all over Gauteng on Sundays. Follow them at @pinkwafflecabin on Twitter to find out about their planned locations.
Sprout360 Urban Food
With a big focus on the farm-to-fork concept, the folks at Sprout360 are all about quality and ensuring that what they sell you is as fresh as possible. As such, 90% of their products are produced by themselves and include a variety of fantastic sandwiches. Find them all over Pretoria and Gauteng at various markets and festivals.
5 Star Street Chef & Amexicano
Run by the genius husband-and-wife team of Martha’s Mojo food trucks, Martha and Christo Crafford, these two trucks are regulars at festivals and markets all over Gauteng. Visit 5 Star Street Chef if you’re into gourmet street food that is prepared with fresh, locally sourced ingredients – try the chicken yakitori burger with pineapple, chilli salsa and wasabi mayo. For great Mexican flavour, Amexicano offers seriously fun street food – try firm favourites like tacos and nachos, and delectable options such as the drunken chicken and beer-braised beef tortillas.
MasterChef competitor Mervin Govender’s mobile catering company specialises in Durban’s three favourite fast foods: burgers, bunnies and boeries. Popular haunts include Essenwood Flea Market and events around Durban. Follow them on Facebook.
If you enjoy experimental African cuisine with a modern twist, try Easy Eating’s burgers, or a sweet vetkoek stuffed with roasted red peppers, aubergine and cheese. They tend to hang around Durban’s hot spots, though you can also follow them on, Twitter and Facebook.
Tuck into gourmet Gatsbys with chicken, deep-fried onion rings, lettuce, tomato and fries, enjoy chicken and beef sliders, health rolls, gourmet salads, chicken kebabs or a yummy Middle-Eastern meze platter. Flavey J’s is a favourite of weekend markets and festivals in Durban and Umhlanga. Follow them on Twitter.
The mobile iwantmycoffee van, the original café concept the brainchild of South African musician, Ard Matthews, of Just Jinger, serves delicious hot brews to Durban North, La Lucia and Umhlanga residents. Find the van at Mayfair on the Lake, Armstrong Avenue in La Lucia, Umdloti Beach, or at events around Durban. You can also track its next location by following on Twitter, or checking it out on Facebook.
Think succulent, zingy chicken served up fresh and fast, wings served as is or with chips or a roti, or a quarter chicken and chips. Choose form aromatic herb or fiery peri-peri flavours. Find them at food festivals and markets around the city, or follow them on Twitter and Facebook.
Out to Lunch
This brightly coloured 70s-style caravan serves up primarily raw and alkaline-plant-based vegan food. Tuck into freshly made 100% vegan, wheat-free and gluten-free wraps that are made from dehydrated veggies and which are packed with seasonal flavours. They can be found at various markets in and around Durban, such as the I Heart market and the Morning Trade. Follow on Twitter and on Facebook.
TurnUp Food Truck
The menu includes juicy burgers like the turn up beef burger with their secret sauce, bacon and cheese on a freshly baked bun, or the Mexicano burger with 150g chicken breast topped with tortilla chips, jalapeños, cheddar, guacamole and sour cream. Find them at trendy food festivals and markets around the city. You can also follow them on Twitter and Facebook.
4Roomed Ekasi Culture
In collaboration with popular shisanyamas and eKasi tourist attractions, this Khayelitsha-based mobile kitchen serves the community a scrumptious well-balanced meal. Think familiar braai foods with a healthy gourmet twist. Find it opposite the Blue Moon Sports Café in Khayelitsha on Saturdays and Sundays, from 12 noon onwards. Follow them on Facebook.
The Baguette Bicycle
Serving up gourmet sandwiches and soft pretzels, or gourmet sliders on pretzel buns every first Thursday of the month in the CBD, as well as at events around the city. Contact them for free deliveries around the city bowl. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
Black Market Foods
Offering a modern approach to street food, expect gourmet sandwiches, salads, breakfast muffins and more. For a hangover cure, try their hot beef and eggslut sandwiches. Find them at the Old Biscuit Mill on Saturdays from 9am to 2pm, and at the Salt Circle Arcade. You can also track their movements on social media for other locations around the city. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
This vintage food caravan offers great coffee, organic juices and fresh fruity smoothies. Track them down at events, festivals and markets around Cape Town.
Cafeteria Guerilla Gastronomica
This truck serves up comfort food including Thai curries, pan-fried mac and cheese, and smoky, braised short rib. Find them at the Bay Harbour Market in Hout Bay. Follow them on Twitter.
Chameleon Mobile Kitchen
Offering a blend of various food styles from around the world, local foodies can enjoy free-range, sustainable ‘lunch box’ style dishes perfect for office dwellers. Find them at Black River Office Park on certain weekdays, and at markets around the city. They are also available for hire at private events. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
The Chef’s Bench
Three menus are on offer, with distinct South African flavours. Options include the Gourmet Street Food menu, The DIY Family Style Feast, or the Eat with your Fingers menu. Think pulled-pork buns with curry peaches, braised beef shin or West Coast seafood potjie with smoked line fish. Find them at popular festivals and markets around the city or hire them for your own private event. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
Curry in a Hurry
Gerhardt Hundt, the 79-year-old owner of this food truck, serves up delicious take-away curries. Options include his signature dish of mutton curry, as well as chicken curry, chicken and prawn, beef and mutton breyani. Gerhardt also makes his own plum chutney, pickled chillies and atchar. Find Curry in a Hurry at Groote Post Market.
Didi’s Bitchin Burritos
This Tex-Mex food truck offers a variety of beef, chicken and veggie burritos. They also dish up naked burritos served in a bowl, breakfast burritos and a selection of tacos. All items are available with hot, homemade chilli sauce. Find them at Salt Circle Arcade, Monday to Friday, as well as at various markets and festivals. On un-booked weekends, you may find them at the Old Biscuit Mill. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
Detour Espresso Bar
Coffee, a small range of Dilmah teas, hot chocolate and snacks from Bags of Bites is what you’ll find here. Popular haunts include Oudekraal on Victoria Road each morning of the week, and on sunny, wind-free Sundays.
Betsy (as the truck is called) is run by Bertus Basson, the chef of current Top 10 restaurant, Overture, and serves hotdogs with 22-cm-long pork sausages made with Sweetwell Farm meat, special sauces and thrice-fried chips. Die Wors-Rol caters to festivals, events and private parties, and can occasionally be found at various markets. Follow them on Facebook.
Durban’s Finest Curry
A fairly straight-forward offering, good for spicy burgers and chips, bunny chow, butter chicken, samoosas, crayfish and prawn curry. Find them in Oudekraal and events. Follow them on Twitter, @durbfinestcurry
Serving up gourmet pizzas with light, crispy bases and fresh toppings. Also look out for the breakfast pizza, with free-range egg, mushroom and Parma ham. They frequent public and private events, markets and festivals. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
Simple, scrumptious Mexican street food such as ceviche, chilli rellenos, various tacos and churros. Catch them at the House of Machines every Sunday from 9am to 3pm, as well as at events and festivals. Follow them on Twitter.
Fetty’s Street Food
Offering authentic Thai and Indian street food, options include Thai egg-fried rice, Phad Thai, spring rolls, Thai curries and Indian curries. Other exciting international flavours include Mexican tacos, burritos, Tres Leches (three-milk cake), and Vietnamese summer rolls. Find them at the City Bowl Market on Hope Street every Thursday and Friday evening (4.30pm to 20.30pm). Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
For the Love of Food
Tuck into a range of dishes such as gourmet hot dogs, arancini balls, sticky Thai ribs, pulled-pork sandwiches, bagels and even burritos. Catch them in and around Melkbosstrand as well as the Big Bay Market. Follow them on Facebook.
FrozenYO on the Beach
Enjoy a tub or twirl of fresh frozen yoghurt in different flavours with your choice of toppings. The toppings include Oreo biscuit crumble, banana chips, fresh fruit, Turkish delight, Ferrero Rocher and more. Find them along the Blouberg beachfront and at various markets, such as the Big Bay Market. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
This truck serves up New York-style street food like pulled-pork sandwiches and juicy cheese burgers. Popular haunts are in and around the city bowl, and you can catch them in the evenings on Buitenkant Street for First Thursdays. Follow them on Twitter .
The Grill & Anchor
Serving up traditional South African fare with an American diner twist, favourites include grilled homemade beef burgers, chilli sloppy joes, hotdogs and more. Look out for them at various markets, festivals and events around the peninsula, or keep up with their latest appearances on Twitter.
The Good Life
Serving up fresh fusion food including ever-changing designer burgers. Think beef burgers with truffle infusion, cheese burgers with Jack Daniel’s onion relish, venison burgers with bourbon-poached pears and brie, or a seared fillet and rocket roll with horseradish aioli. Find them in Oudekraal or in front of Charly’s Bakery on Harrington Street. Also look out for them at local festivals and events, or track their daily movements on Facebook and Twitter.
Savour comforting, modern Indian cuisine at this new food truck. Think butter chicken nachos, sweetcorn, peanut and coconut lettuce wraps, and fiery curry bowls. They’re around on First Thursdays outside Mother’s Ruin Gin Bar, or at various markets, such as The Water Shed night market at the V&A Waterfront. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
Enjoy American diner-style dishes as well as some local favourites. Items include pulled-pork rolls, boerewors rolls, calamari and chips, surf and turf, and buffalo wings. Find them in and around Cape Town at markets and festivals. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
Lady Bonin’s Tea Parlour
A range of hot and iced loose-leaf teas. Try the new, red choc chilli chai (rooibos spiced chai, raw cocoa and chilli), matcha latte (ground green tea leaves frothed with milk), Turkish apple, cinnamon bun and bliss blend (rooibos, strawberry and lavender). They can be found at markets, festivals, events and private functions in and around Cape Town. You can also find their store at The Woodstock Foundry. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
Cheesy calzones, silky risotto and their moreish, legendary Nutella bombs. Find them in Oudekraal on some weekends (weather permitting), and Salt River Circle most lunchtimes during the week. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
Lotus Food Truck
This van serves up contemporary Asian street food inspired by co-manager Kyle Miller’s trip through South East Asia. Expect ramen bowls with grilled pork belly, fresh prawn laksa, delicious salads, and a variety of flavoursome curries. They also serve a range of homemade iced teas and Vietnamese coffees. They can mostly be found at public events and festivals. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
This picture-perfect truck serves up easy-eating grub such as sirloin Prego rolls with rocket and caramelised onions, 100% ground beef burgers, Cajun chicken breast burgers with fresh tomatoes and lime garlic mayo, frankfurter hotdogs, and lightly toasted paninis. They stick to set venues such as Oudekraal, food markets, corporate and private functions, and festivals. Follow them on Facebook.
Plating up a range of fusion dishes from South Africa and France, foodies can tuck into items such as prawn bisque, tarte tatin, gourmet burgers and Prego rolls. Find them at markets and festivals taking place around the city and winelands.
Moreish eatery is a mobile food kitchen specialising in soon-to-be-famous tacos, but are versatile and able to cook any style depending on the event.
This mobile trailer burger restaurant serves up the eatery’s signature ‘no ordinary burgers’ (NOB). Catch them at events around Cape Town or at Black River Office Park on certain weekdays, and markets such as the Big Bay Market. Follow them on Facebook.
Think authentic, Neapolitan-style pizza made with Italian pizza flour, local buffalo mozzarella and a signature sauce made from Italian tomatoes. Try the Margherita di Bufala (margherita with buffalo mozzarella) or a variety of meat options. All meat produce is sourced from one of South Africa’s most recognisable cured meat artisans, Richard Bosman, and is pasture-reared and organic. Find them at Neighbourgoods Market at the Old Biscuit Mill most Saturdays, and various events, gatherings and private functions. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
This truck has sustainable and artisanal Mexican food on offer, with dishes such as slow-braised-cider-pulled pork, tacos, Mexican-inspired pizza and more. Find them at festivals and private events in and around the Western Cape. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
Scandalous Food Truck
A fusion of flavours is available at this vibey truck. Think Italian piadines (flatbread) with a variety of fillings, spicy lamb curry and homemade pastas. Catch them in and around the city, at office parks, markets and festivals. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
Offering indulgent sweet treats like spiced doughnuts, cupcakes and brownies, as well as savoury goodies like gourmet empanadas, you won’t be sorry you visited this cute, pink tuk-tuk. Find it at food markets and festivals around the city. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
The Soft Machine
Soft-serve ice cream in bespoke flavours such as milk tart with cinnamon spice snaps, strawberry with meringue snaps, and moerkoffie also served with cinnamon spice snaps. In summer you can find them every Saturday at the Neighbourgoods Market at Woodstock’s Old Biscuit Mill. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
This decadent dessert truck is dedicated to making sweet treats mobile. Indulge in all things sugary, from waffles on a stick and caramel whoopee pies to decadent brownies and cupcakes. Catch the bright pink truck at festivals and markets around the city. Follow them on Facebook.
Serving up light Hungarian flatbread, this tasty truck offers fresh flatbreads with delicious toppings such as slow-roasted lamb with parmesan and rosemary. You’ll find the black and red truck at most food festivals as well as certain markets, or visit their stall at the V&A Market on the Wharf. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
Toats Chef Shack
Offering fresh South African fare like sirloin Prego steak rolls with herb salad, deep-fried onion rings and yoghurt drizzle; parmesan and gorgonzola risotto balls; chicken, gorgonzola, pear and walnut salad; and lychee and ginger pavlova. Find them at various markets and functions. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
Wahine Food Truck
Feast on delicious, Polynesian-inspired eats with options for vegetarians, as well as those who are gluten intolerant. Dishes include Polynesian pork, teriyaki chicken wraps and veg chow mein. You’ll find them at music festivals, food markets and local office parks. Follow them on Facebook or Twitter.
Bar Di Bar
Craft beer, craft beer and more craft beer, with a range of local brews also on offer. The 1975 classic Kombi can be found at various markets and festivals around the winelands, or at their home on Laborie Wine Estate, where tasty tapas are also available. Follow on Twitter or Facebook.
Tuck into toasted Cubanos, chilli poppers, burger sliders, pork-belly sandwiches and rustic gourmet pizzas. Catch them at food and wine festivals in the area as well as at some Cape Town events. Like their Facebook page to keep abreast of their whereabouts.
Ishushu Wood Fired Pizzas
Serving crisp, wood-fired pizza with a range of delicious toppings from juicy rib to buttery avo, with Banting and gluten-free bases also available. Follow the smell of cheesy pizza and find them at certain wine estates, such as Avontuur Estate, or at sporting events in the area. You can also check out their Facebook page.
Oh Só Peachy
These guys keep it clean with raw juices, healthy smoothies and wholesome food. Vegan and Banting-friendly items are also available. Find them at various music festivals in the area. You can also visit their Facebook page.
Terbodore Coffee Roasters from KZN started up this quirky coffee truck in the Cape winelands. Enjoy fresh, hot fair-trade brews with a savoury or sweet pastry twist. Grab your cuppa in the beautiful Franschhoek winelands at various food markets in the area. Follow on Twitter.
Serving traditional German sausages as well as a signature spicy curry wurst. Find them at the Friday Night Market at Narnia Village, Knysna from 4pm to 8pm, and Mosaic Market in Sedgefield from 8am to 2pm on Saturdays. You can also follow @WurstExpress on Twitter or Facebook.
Did we miss any food trucks? Let us know in the comments section below.