When it comes to Southern culture, Nashville has to be considered a standard bearer. It's a city that's classically Southern yet uniquely its own, with a legendary music scene, and of course, a food culture to match. Restaurants in Nashville emphasize an eclectic mix of Southern soul and backyard grit done up with gourmet twists, and a whole lotta smoke.
Nashville food trucks reflect the same mix of homegrown flavor, but push the city's cuisine into bolder, innovative directions. The city was early to catch on to the food truck revolution, and nearly a decade in, it's positively thriving. With a serious nightlife that tends to get out seriously late, food trucks in Nashville are more than a privilege, they're an essential utility. Albeit, a consistently decadent one.
Hoss' Loaded Burgers can lay claim to being Nashville's first and only Juicy Lucy food truck, and if you're not sure what that means, we'll break it down: a fresh-chucked, local, grass-fed beef patty gets stuffed with cheese, then slapped in an oven-baked bun. It's a juicy, savory masterpiece that's unlike any burger you've ever had. And that's before the toppings even come into play.
Hoss' roster of gourmet burgers includes its signature offering - stuffed with cheddar and topped by bacon, onion crispers and hickory-smoked BBQ sauce, along with The Italian Job, which mixes a mozzarella and pepperoni-stuffed beef patty with hot sausage, then covers it in marinara, hot peppers and onions. Endless special burgers also rotate on and off, keeping Hoss' food truck one you should be visiting daily.
Nashville may lay claim to a distinct local flavor, but it's the international influence here that makes it a true global dining scene. Perhaps even more than the brick and mortar restaurants, Nashville's food trucks push exotic cuisine ever further into the mainstream, enriching the entire city - starting with your own palate.
DegThai brings fresh Thai fusion to the streets of Tennessee, marrying authentic flavors to bold new experiments. The menu's flush with world-class curry, from red to green to Massaman, but has more than enough room for rotating specialties, bridging the best of old and new world cooking. Bao Down, meanwhile, brings Asian flair from a bit further North, with steamed Chinese dumplings stuffed with all manner of delights. BBQ pork and curry chicken buns rank among the truck's most popular offerings, but a focus on fresh and organic makes every dish here a work of imported art.
King Tut's imports even more alluring wares, with an Egyptian-inspired menu honed in Cairo and perfected in New York by the truck's culinary team. The Nile Valley specialties here include mainstream hits like shawarma and falafel, along with rotating items that'll take your tongue to strange, delicious places but leave your feet right on the ground.
Dessert trucks in Nashville rank amongst the best in the Southeast, but it's the cold stuff in particular dominating hot days and late nights alike, cooling down tempers and waking up appetites. Track down these trucks to get cool relief worth craving.
With a focus on all-natural ingredients, Blue Monkey Shaved Ice brings sun-kissed Hawaiian refreshment to Music City, with original flavors that can't be found anywhere else. Ghirardelli Caramel Apple, Sour Gummi Worm and Strawnilla Shortcake are just a few of the options ready to perk your day up and cool your tongue down. Likewise, Retro Sno uses pure cane sugar to craft even flakier frozen treats. Their snoballs come loaded up in a variety of fresh forms - from white mocha to sangria and beyond. The ultra-fine texture is as fluffy as snow, but thankfully tastes a whole lot more vibrant.
Bradley's Curbside Creamery simply offers ice cream, and offers simple ice cream at that, but don't confuse simple for basic. These are top notch flavors hitting all the spots you want them to, evoking childhood bliss with every bite, no fancy twists or turns to the recipes. Only timeless refreshment - delivered as scoops, milkshakes or award-winning floats (from classic vanilla and root beer to the mega-popular "white trash" - orange dreamsicle and Mountain Dew). Bradley's isn't out to re-invent the wheel, but it delivers some of the best flavor you can find over four of them.
Smoke Et Al's successfully branded itself as "beyond BBQ" - in fact very successfully; quickly becoming one of the top food trucks in Nashville. Its savory, smoked glory gets slapped in tacos, between biscuits or classically strewn over plates (and paired with the likes of fried/pickled okra and cheeto mac & cheese). It's a food truck stuffed with rich Southern seasoning, and if you're smart, you'll track it down & follow suit.
Launched by a small team of New Yorkers in desperate need of authentic bagel goodness, Bare Naked Bagel has given Nashville a better reason to wake up. Or stay up - depending on the hour. The menu's packed with big league bagel sandwiches, along with breakfast bowls and Bongo Java coffee. Finally, The Grilled Cheeserie delivers gourmet grilled cheese goodness that's taken the town by storm. In fact, Grilled Cheeserie's been so successful that they've launched a proper brick and mortar on Belcourt Ave. But it's the truck that remains the big draw, bringing all that melted bliss straight to you on the sidewalk, no sitting required. Though to really savor options like their pimiento mac & cheese melt, scoping out a seat is really recommended.
As always, check out the live Nashville food truck map above or on the Roaming Hunger app to find the most accurate, up-to-the-minute location info for all trucks listed, alongside countless more options.
Street Food Thursday lights up Deaderick street downtown for lunch, and plays host to countless trucks looking to make your mid-day break just a little bit break-ier. Select Specialty Hospital on Hayes & 20th hosts food trucks every weekday for lunch, while Yazoo Taproom on Division St. takes care of weekend cravings.
More so than almost any city in the South, though, Nashville food trucks tend to spread far and wide. Not to mention late - Woodland St. in particular is bustling with options to satisfy after-bar crowds. Most importantly, to snag any of the trucks listed (or any that aren't) for your own private consumption, click HERE to get started. Nashville's as decadent a Southern city as they come, so when it comes to your party here, make sure the food truck matches.