Food trucks, a popular concept in large cities like Los Angeles and New York for years, infiltrated North Carolina over the last few years and have really taken off. The combination of low overhead and being able to seek out your customers seems to be a winning formula for food truck operators. Although mobile taco vendors are probably the godfathers of the burgeoning North Carolina food truck scene, whether they know it or not, food trucks now run the gamut from burgers to Indian food to pretty much anything you can imagine. And it didn’t take long for savvy entrepreneurs to put two and two together and realize that 2+2=BBQ.
In an ideal world, food trucks specializing in North Carolina pork barbecue will allow the use of inexpensive rural land and less rigid regulations to cook the ‘cue on wood-fired pits. The operators can then “bring the pork to market” in the big city–downtown Charlotte, Raleigh, wherever–where property costs are high and wood-cooking is less practical. For now this is a pipe dream, and BBQ food trucks are mostly gassers like most brick and mortar joints, but a man can dream. Below is a list of North Carolina-based BBQ food trucks I’m aware of:
- The Barbecue Joint from Chapel Hill
- Big Al’s BBQ from Raleigh (previously a food truck, now with a brick and mortar location; not sure food truck still operating)
- Chick-N-Que from Knightdale
- Fatback’s BBQ & Rib Shack from Fayetteville
- Habana Blues BBQ from Wake Forest (no longer in business, as far as I know)
- The Humble Pig from Raleigh
- the lowdown food truck from Asheville (BBQ and vegetarian banh mi sandwiches!)
- Mama Jean’s BBQ from Durham (also with a brick and mortar location)
- Old North State BBQ from Chapel Hill
- Poor Piggy’s from Wilmington
- Red’s BBQ from Charlotte
- RO’s Bar-B-Que from Gastonia (also with a brick and mortar location)
Surely there are others I’ve yet to hear about, so please add a comment if you know of any other Tar Heel food trucks that specialize in barbecue.