It’s taken a long time for the food truck scene to come to fruition in the Yakima Valley. But right now, it’s fair to say, the food truck frenzy is at its peak. Sure, there’s been plenty of taco trucks spotted throughout the valley for years, but it took a while for others to begin branching out, embracing the idea of a mobile kitchen.
A food truck can be the best of both worlds for business owners and patrons alike. The initial investment in opening a food establishment can be lower, allowing an owner to trial things out before potentially opening a permanent space. And for eaters, well, food trucks deliver on the balance of eating casually while still enjoying ridiculously good food all at the same time.
Especially with the boom in craft breweries and fine wineries opening throughout the Yakima Valley, and many of those establishments partnering up with local food trucks, the food truck scene in the valley is alive and well. And we wouldn’t have it any other way. From the classic tacos to pizza to even turkey legs, if you search hard enough, you’ll find exactly what you want to eat for lunch or dinner from a food truck, and trust us, the food is really good. Here are our top picks when it comes to food truck cuisine in Yakima – for now. We’re almost positive this list will continue to grow, just as the food truck scene continues to expand.
Hoptown Pizza is everything you could ever want in a woodfired pizza – incredibly flavorful sauce, fantastic topping options and a perfectly crisp yet still chewy crust. Hoptown has a permanent location at exit 44 off of Highway 82, with a fantastic yard for outdoor seating and a unique spot to enjoy inside. But if you’re lucky, you can catch the cute little blue Hoptown truck at an event or a brewery to enjoy their woodfired pizza on the go. Pizzas are fired over applewood in an oven up to 900 degrees for the perfect pie. You really can’t go wrong with any of their selections.
Yair Gutierrez opened Crazy Foods in 2016 after serving four years in the Marines. He grew up helping his uncle in his taqueria in Mexico and always knew he wanted to do something with food. However, like many others, the capital required for opening a restaurant can be tricky to tackle.
Yair ended up buying a truck, fitting it with everything he needed to make his Southern California/Mexican style cuisine, and he’s been a hit ever since. Crazy Foods serves up tamales, chicken and veggie burritos and carne asada tacos. But what people really go for is the Cali Burrito, stuffed with French fries and carne asada, as well as his carne asada fries. The food is fun, approachable, and most importantly, ridiculously delicious.
5 Salsas is the story of a husband and wife team who love food. Jose Flores and Vania Flores-Zuno opened 5 Salsas in 2016, parking throughout town with their taco truck. But once Single Hill Brewing Company opened in Yakima, they found a more permanent home. You can find 5 Salsas parked on the patio outside Single Hill most days, allowing you to grab a delicious beer, along with a plate of perfectly prepared tacos.
Jose mans the grill with his years of restaurant experience, prepping classics like chicken and pork, while also offering a nopales taco and a delicious veggie option. Jose also grills up their signature menu item – the taqueso – which is basically a pile of shredded cheese cooked on the grill in the same shape as a corn tortilla. Jose then pairs a corn tortilla with the cheese disk and treats it as a taco shell, providing the flavors from the cheese in every bite. That ingenious invention, paired with five different homemade salsas, each with a story and history behind it, makes 5 Salsas one of the top taco trucks in the valley.
M&A’s Grub to Go
M&A’s is definitely not your typical food truck. First of all, owner Mel, works full time and puts all of his time into the traveling food establishment on weekends for events. He doesn’t have a consistent parking spot, but he can be found at events on a regular basis throughout the valley.
M&A’s has their smoker on the back of the trailer, allowing him to slow cook meat and barbecue his food right from his rig. He serves up ribs and pulled pork with all the fixin’s, and if you’re lucky you might catch up cooking up a batch of his giant turkey legs.
What I Crave
What I Crave took the Yakima Valley food truck market by storm when it came on the scene. The cute little red truck serves up, well, exactly what you might crave from a food truck. There’s unique sliders and taco combos, along with rotating menu items like jambalaya, Po Boys and even a few dessert options like blueberry pancakes or churros. There’s always the slider and taco staples, but the menu changes often, still offering delicious options for anyone to find something they’ll enjoy.
What I Crave travels around the valley around a lot, regularly parking at Bale Breaker Brewing Company, Wildridge Vineyard and more.
If you can’t say you’ve eaten pizza out of a 1954 Chevy, well, what are you waiting for? Cascade Crust can be found in the lower Yakima Valley at Varietal Brewing Company every Thursday, and it’s well worth the trip. And no, we’re not kidding about the truck.
The pizza oven was built on the back of a 1950s Chevy pick-up that owners Phil Laurx and Alice Childs take to events and breweries throughout the lower Yakima Valley. The oven is cranked to 700 degrees, dishing out pizzas in just minutes. The dough is made fresh and the topping combinations are delicious. Definitely a must-try if you stumble upon them.
Tacos Don Chayo
Another Yakima staple, Tacos Don Chayo has earned a reputation for their incredible food. They serve up a simple menu of tacos, tortas, burritos and quesadillas, but everything on the menu is good. Tacos are served up classically with two corn tortillas and meat, and the toppings are up to you. There’s a selection of toppings from cilantro to radish to onions and lemon, along with several salsas, to perfect your dish. The prices are great, and the food is out of this world good.
Tacos Don Chayo has a permanent location they park at 2810 W. Washington Ave. in Yakima. You can also find them regularly serving at Bale Breaker Brewing Co., again, allowing for the pairing of a great local beer and a burrito. Cheers!
Photos: Cascade Crust, Tacos Don Chayo, all others by Molly Allen