Stroll down the sidewalk of any busy Canadian city and you’ll see that street food has expanded to include more than just hot dogs and French fries. Let’s face it though, beyond sushi burritos and tacos, the choices are pretty slim and frankly, kind of boring. Drive past the border, though, and suddenly you’re in a whole, new world when it comes to street food! From pie crust ice cream cones and locally-sourced shrimp trays to mouthwatering ribs, there are tons of delicious options to choose from all across the States. Book your vacation time now, because these dishes are definitely worth travelling to!
1. ‘SWEET MELTDOWN’ FROM MS. CHEEZIOUS — MIAMI, FLORIDA
This isn’t your run-of-the-mill grilled cheese. Made with a ricotta cheese and orange marmalade blend on Texas toast, this gooey sandwich is served with chocolate dipping sauce. You’d be surprised by how well cheese and chocolate go together, we promise.
2. ‘FLYING PIG’ FROM GUERRILLA STREET FOOD — ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI
You wouldn’t think St. Louis would have some of the world’s best Filipino cuisine, but this signature dish from Guerrilla Street Food will change your mind in an instant. The entree consists of pork shoulder roasted for 12 hours, pulled and sauced with a hot blend of Sriracha, calamansi and hoisin, topped with a fried egg on a bed of steamed jasmine rice. Not sure you want to wait in the long line-up at their food truck? Head on over to either of their two bricks and mortar locations (in South Grand and The Hill neighbourhoods, respectively).
3. ‘CAPTAIN CRUNCH TILAPIA TACOS’ FROM CUCINA ZAPATA — PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA
Conveniently located in Food Truck Alley on the Drexel University campus in a beautifully decorated truck (using street art, no less), this is a must-visit spot for foodies. Their fresh tilapia tacos are crusted with Captain Crunch cereal and topped with avocado, pico de gallo and peanut sauce. For the low price of $6 USD, you really can’t go wrong. Philadelphia is one of the top (if not the top) food truck capitals of the world, so be sure to pack your baggy pants, just in case.
4. SHRIMP TRAY FROM SAN PEDRO FISH MARKET — SAN PEDRO, CALIFORNIA
At San Pedro Fish Market, everyone’s very serious about their seafood. So much so that they bottle and sell their very own seafood seasoning sauces. With fresh seafood delivered daily right to their locale in the Long Beach area, it’s no wonder that they’ve been featured in Time magazine and on the Travel channel. Their world-famous shrimp tray is definitely the pièce de résistance on their menu. Overflowing with tasty shrimp, bell peppers, potatoes, tomatoes, onions and, of course, their own seasoning, this one will fill up the whole family.
5. ‘BETTER THAN SEX’ CUPCAKE FROM POLKADOT CUPCAKE TRUCK — NUTLEY, NEW JERSEY
With a name like that, how could we refuse?! The specialty cupcake has a base of chocolate cake filled with chocolate mousse, topped with rich chocolate buttercream, chocolate sauce, and finished with mini chocolate chips and chocolate sprinkles. We’ll be using all of our Air Miles to get a dozen of those!
6. PIE CRUST ICE CREAM CONE FROM SPINNING J BAKERY — CHICAGO, ILLINOIS
Psst, we’ll let you in on a little secret. This gelato-filled cone is made out of an all-butter pie crust, and is only available on the secret menu at Spinning J Bakery and Soda Fountain. It’s recently been featured in the Chicago Tribune because of how unique and irresistible it is, so be sure to stay ahead of the curve and book your trip to taste one now!
7. AREPA PABELLÓN FROM AREPA ZONE — WASHINGTON, D.C.
The national street food in Venezuela and Colombia, arepas are basically fried corncakes filled with goodies like pulled pork or vegetables and eaten like a pita. Here at Arepa Zone (conveniently located in Union Market), the most popular menu item is the arepa pabellón, which is filled with shredded beef, black beans, crumbled cheese and fried plantains. Get ready to order more than one!
8. BBQ RIBS FROM FRANKLIN BBQ — AUSTIN, TEXAS
Okay, so this isn’t exactly a food truck or stall on a street, but summer isn’t complete without at least a few barbecues, and the absolute best barbecued meat can be found at Franklin. Don’t believe us? Just ask Anthony Bourdain, who swears by their brisket. They’re open from 11 a.m. until whenever the food runs out daily, so make sure to get there early!
9. ‘DOUBLE AWESOME’ FROM MEI MEI — BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS
Call your dish ‘double awesome’ and our interest is immediately piqued. The scallion pancake sandwich is made with local green pesto, cheddar, two oozy eggs, with the added punch of pasture-raised cottage bacon, ham or turkey. Honestly, everything on the menu is a-mei-zing.