Chatelaine Kitchen

Best street eats: A guide to Ontario food trucks

Over the past year, Ontario’s burgeoning food truck scene has exploded into a full-on food culture that has Canadians salivating at street corners. Toronto residents no longer need to rely on hot dogs as their only source of street meat – there are a variety of trucks that roam the city on an almost-daily basis.

We’ve compiled a handy guide with all the vendors currently truckin’ around Toronto (and other cities around southwest Ontario), including what they’re all about, and their must-try dishes.

For more information on Toronto food trucks, including daily locations and upcoming events, visit the vendor’s twitter page, Food Truck Eats or Toronto Food Trucks.

Ben & Jerry Canada’s ice cream truck goes coast-to-coast scooping free ice cream for the masses on its “Scoop Moovement” campaign.

On the menu: Assorted Ben & Jerry’s ice cream.

What to try: Bestselling flavours include Cherry Garcia and Half-Baked.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @BenJerryCanada #ScoopMoovement

Greek-Canadians Manny Tsouvallas, Tony Vastis, Dimitri Velonis and Elias Vastis serve up Greek food on-the-go in their signature blue truck with the wonky donkey.

On the menu: Greek street food, some with a Canadian twist.

What to try: Their Fried Calamari Pita is served with french fries in it (yes, this is how it’s done in Greece!). Also their Gyros Poutine, fries with a medley of cheeses and gravy topped with Gyros meat.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @bluedonkeytruck

Owner Yvonne Deveaux serves up fresh pizzas baked from her truck’s on-board Italian pizza oven.

On the menu: Wood fired pizzas.

What to try: Her Majesty, their take on the classic Margherita. Or Bacon Jam, made with house-made bacon jam.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @BonfireCatering

With the growing popularity of their St. Lawrence Market counter in downtown Toronto, Buster’s Sea Cove’s owners Tom Antonarakis and Quinten Tran and chef David Hoang decided to bust out the first seafood truck in the city.

On the menu: All things seafood.

What to try: You can’t go wrong with their Maine-style lobster roll, served in a lunchbox with chips and dill pickle on the side.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @bustersseacove, or visit their shop at the St. Lawrence Market.

You can’t miss Caplansky’s Deli Truck (affectionately nicknamed “Thundering Thelma”) – it’s got a giant picture of owner Zane Caplansky stamped on the side of it.

On the menu: Deli food done right.

What to try: Their Famous Smoked Meat Sandwich, and for dessert, stock up on the Maple-Bacon Donuts.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @CaplanskyTruck, or visit their shop at 356 College Street.

Hamilton-based Cupcake Diner is helmed by owner and baker, Natalie Ravoi.

On the menu: Their rotating cupcake roster features 35 different cupcakes.

What to try: Their Caramel-Apple Pie cupcake was nominated for Best Menu Item at the recent food truck awards, AwesTRUCK2012.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @CupcakeDiner, or visit their shop at 35 York Boulevard, Hamilton

This elegant, mobile gourmet cupcake kitchen cruises around the GTA bringing supreme taste bud bliss to those wanting a sweet fix.

On the menu: Their rotating cupcake roster features 42 different cupcakes.

What to try: Their innovative “Man-Cakes”, like the Beer Run (Guinness-Chocolate with Guinness frosting) or Drill Bit (Maple sponge with dulce de leche topped with milk chocolate frosting with chocolate-dipped bacon). Yes, they’re meant to appeal to men, but we wouldn’t turn one away either.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @curbsidebliss

The name of this Caledonia-based truck means “good eats”, which is exactly what it serves up around southern Ontario. In fact, they’ve just won “Best New Truck” at AwesTRUCK2012.

On the menu: Authentic European specialties.

What to try: Their fried Risotto Balls come in a pair, with a creamy goat cheese centre.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @dobrojesti

The first gourmet food truck in Ontario, Niagara-based ‘El Gastro’ and its fearless leaders, Adam Hynam-Smith and Tamara Jensen, have been dishing out gourmet street food since July 2010. They also sweeped numerous trophies at AwesTRUCK2012.

On the menu: Fusion street food at its best. With a rotating roster of menu items, you never know what you’re going to get each time you visit the truck. Tacos are a fair bet.

What to try: We’re going to go ahead and say “anything on the menu”. El Gastronomo consistently delivers great food.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @elgastronomo



Fidel Gastro’s rebel-without-a-kichen, Matt Basile, brings his “extremo sandwiches” to the masses in his new food truck.

On the menu: Classic Cuban sandwiches, with extreme twists

What to try: Sgt. Slather, a BBQ pulled pork, guacamole cream and crushed up tortilla chips. The Toronto Cheesesteak, medium-rare rib-eye steak with caramelized onions, Havarti cheese and a fried egg.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @fidelgastros


You’ll definitely want to hail this “cab” down when you’re hungry, captained by Spiros Drossos, a Napa Valley native.

On the menu: Classic American comfort food.

What to try: Breakfast Burrito for an on-the-go morning grub and the Philly Cheesesteak.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @FoodCabbie

Self-proclaimed “Food Dudes” Adrian Niman, Daniel Frenette, Brent McClenahan and Dave McIntyre bring their catering company on the road, dishing out great street fare in southern Ontario. Just follow the rockin’ tunes blaring from their speakers.

On the menu: Rotating menu featuring flavours from around the world.

What to try: We’re a fan of their lunch boxes, Bangkok slaw and Captain Crunch tacos.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @FDtruck

Lifelong friends Graeme Smith and Scott Austin have been serving up classic grilled cheese sandwiches on-the-go from their Hamilton-based truck since July 2011.

On the menu: Gourmet grilled cheese.

What to try: The Lumberjack, aged cheddar, bacon, Granny Smith apple and Canadian maple syrup on white.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @gorilla_cheese

Culinary duo, Shontelle Pinch and Bianka Matchett, take their cooking talents on the road to provide Toronto with healthy street food (and gluten-free options too).

On the menu: Healthy food with big, bold flavours.

What to try: You can’t go wrong with their Mexican Nachos or yummy tacos.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @gourmetb1tches

Owners Krystian Catala and Terry Nicolaou serve up authentic Latin cuisine for breakfast, lunch or dinner in their bright orange food truck.

On the menu: Authentic Latin cuisine.

What to try: Tacos and empanadas. And Huevos Rancheros for breakfast? Don’t mind if we do.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @GourmetGringos

Mark Wasserman and brothers Scott and Kevin Fraser are the captains of this mobile food truck, complete with an on-board smoker.

On the menu: Gourmet BBQ.

What to try: Signature Texas-style brisket with a side of their root-beer smoked beans.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @hogtownsmoke

This coffee truck chugs around downtown giving Toronto street-roamers their daily caffeine fix.

On the menu: All things caffeine.

What to try: The iced coffee is a winner on a hot summer’s day.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @HulaGirlEB, or visit their shop at 2473 Dundas West, Toronto.

Chef Luis Olarte goes back to his Columbian roots to bring us comfort food with a hint of his Bogota upbringing.

On the menu: A mix of Columbian, Latin and Italian-inspired food.

What to try: Original Columbian Hamburger, washed down with their refreshing raw sugar-cane lemonade.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @PerSeMobile

This mobile cupcakery brings classics like the Red Velvet, Mint Chocolate, and Oreo to the streets of Toronto.

On the menu: Assorted cupcakes.

What to try: Banana chocolate and red velvet.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @prettysweet_to

Indulge yourself in classic comfort food inspired by chef Johnny V’s mother and Nonna from the region of Molise, Italia.

On the menu: Italian comfort food.

What to try: The Holy Trinity, a sampler of their popular sliders – Meat Ball, Veal and Eggplant.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @RomenChariot

The Canadian restaurant chain releases their food truck, giving hungry Canadians their poutine fix on-the-go.

On the menu: Poutine, in all sorts of combinations.

What to try: The classic Traditional Poutine. Or go all out for the heart-stopping Triple Pork Poutine (pulled pork, bacon and sausage).

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @poutinerie, or visit their locations around Canada.

Mike Pitton and Lucas Jones bring some down-home smoky goodness to southwestern Ontario from their Hamilton-based food truck.

On the menu: Southern-style smoked cuisine.

What to try: Their signature pulled pork sandwich with your choice of 3 homemade sauces. It also comes with a side of their famous smoked mac and cheese.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @SouthernSmokeTk

Using gourmet sausages and dressings, owners David Orzakovski and Lance Freelan turn the iconic hotdog into haute dogs.

On the menu: Gourmet sausages ‘stuft’ into a Dutch crunch artisan bread.

What to try: Thai Chicken gourmet sausage. And for dessert, a stuffed waffle with chocolate banana custard.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @StuftTruck

With 5 locations in the Hamilton area, Sweetness Bakery now has two trucks roaming around southern Ontario.

On the menu: Assorted cupcakes baked from a nut-free facility.

What to try: Banana Caramello or the campfire-inspired S’mores.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @bakerysweetness

Iconic Ontario restaurant chain Swiss Chalet joins the food truck revolution by launching a fleet of trucks to serve up their signature french fries with a side of Chalet sauce on its “Fresh Impressions Tour”.

On the menu: Fries and Chalet sauce!

What to try: Fries and Chalet sauce!

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @myswisschalet #SwissFreshTour

No longer relegated to just fairs and exhibitions, their food truck will let you feed your Tiny Toms cravings several times a year.

On the menu: Tiny Tom’s signature donuts.

What to try: Tiny Tom’s signature donuts.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @TinyTomDonuts, or visit their location at 7323 Woodbine Avenue, Markham

Extending from the Gourmet Group catering company, the Urban Smoke truck specializes in traditional and fusion BBQ.

On the menu: Classic and fusion BBQ.

What to try: Memphis-style pulled pork with tangy slaw and soft bun.

Where to find them: Follow them on twitter @UrbanSmokeTruck