Yinz Try Any Food Trucks in Pittsburgh?

by Sharon Shi, September 27, 2011

This is a guest post written by Sharon Shi, an Innovations Associate at SMGx who also enjoys and loves trying new foods.

With over 35 food trucks, the food truck revolution in Chicago is booming and continues to grow, but what about other cities in the US? In about a month I’ll be heading back to my alma mater in Pittsburgh, PA (GO STEELERS!) for homecoming and thought I’d do some digging of what food trucks I could check out in the process.

The food truck revolution isn’t nearly as big in Pittsburgh as it is in Chicago but the trucks that do exist definitely seem to be a hit. As I’m digging through trade articles, blog, and reviews, the food truck I’ve read most about is the Franktuary Truck which serves gourmet hot dogs, check out their menu here, everything sounds DELICIOUS! Makes me want to run out to Portillo’s to grab a dog.

The Steel City Sandwich Truck. Image courtesy of Flickr user Guzzle & Nosh.

Another truck I’ve read a lot about and heard friends in the Pittsburgh area talk about is Sree’s Indian truck. Although I can’t seem to locate a Twitter account or Facebook page for the truck, it apparently parks at the same consistent location. Sree’s truck is usually parked at Carnegie Mellon during the weekday from 11am-3pm. Exact location? Not sure. I suppose it may have to be a scavenger hunt!

Speaking of scavenger hunt, find the dessert trucks Dozen Bake Shop and the Goodie Truck to get your sweet fixes! Doze Bake Shop is a cupcake truck that serves gourmet treats. Drool. The Goodie Truck is a mobile bake shop that serves home made ice cream sandwiches during the summer. Imagine that, ice cream sandwiches to order, sign me up! Too bad summer is no longer here…

But what I wish was here in Chicago is the Steel City Sandwich Truck, which apparently brings Pittsburgh food to Los Angeles, CA. Although this truck isn’t in Pittsburgh, it’s brought the famous Pittsburgh sandwich to another city (similar to how Bergstein’s NY Deli brings New York deli-style food to us in Chicago). If you’ve never spent time in Pittsburgh, you probably don’t know of the greatest sandwich shop ever, Primanti Brothers. These sandwiches are just your ordinary sandwiches but are served with cole slaw and French fries in the sandwich. Imagine that, heaven isn’t it? The Steel City Sandwich truck lives in Los Angeles and shares the Pittsburgh food culture of the sandwich and pierogies, which are polish dumplings stuffed with mashed potatoes and cheddar cheese sautéed with caramelized onions.

Most if not all of the food trucks seem to swarm around the campuses of University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon. It’s a great stop for students running in between classes and something that fits in their tight college wallets. Although my sister is a student at Pitt, she lives off campus and can’t recall if she’s seen them as of late. That’s too bad. I’ll certainly be forcing her to a food truck when I visit.

Am I missing any food trucks? Or have you tried one of the Pittsburgh food trucks? Please share your stories and experiences!

Connect with Sharon on Twitter @Shartron or to hear more about her adventures, read her blog atwww.shartron.blogspot.com.

  • http://twitter.com/ashleyleonzio ashleyleonzio

    Hi Sharon – the food truck scene here is limited. The city has laws in place that make it really difficult to start such a business so I think a lot of people are deterred by that. (Cant stay anywhere for more than 30 mins, cant be withint 200 feet of similar brick and mortar business or a sporting event – the city has barriers set up around all of those kinds of areas.) There are some stationary vendors around the Pitt/CMU campuses, but the mobile vendor scene is really small. I haven’t heard of any other trucks than the ones you have mentioned. My grandparents used to own a business that had 30+ food trucks on the road in the Greater Pittsburgh Area but they closed close to ten years ago now – way before the explosion of food trucks across the US.

  • Karen Calvert

    I am hoping to start a Food Truck Festival in the vicinity of Pittsburgh. Any info I would need? Also, do you know of any Food Trucks that might be interested in being part of our Festival?

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