You may have grown up knowing that you shouldn’t buy food from the side of the road, but today, London’s street food is in a league of its own. Whether it’s the classic such as stacked burgers and chips slathered in sauce, or more unique offerings including vegan kebabs and BBQ pits, street food in the capital is at its best. Read on to see our pick of summer street food in London.
The food trucks you should be hunting down this festival season
Burger & Beyond (above)
What’s on offer: Burger & Beyond will serve its juicy burgers at various festivals this summer. Our favourite is the Cheeseburger, which consists of a 45-day aged beef patty sandwiched between a brioche bun and topped with double American cheese, smoky mayo and onion – perfect dancing fuel.
Where to find them: Goodwood Festival of Speed, Wireless VIP area, Wilderness and Big Feastival
What’s on offer: Farang is popping up at a well-known foodie festival this summer, serving up its usual mix of Thai fare. Expect to taste the likes of a roasted lamb shoulder curry with ginger and peppercorns, and curried egg noodles served with smoked chicken.
Where to find them: Big Feastival
Other Side Fried (above)
What’s on offer: The purveyors of over-the-top fried chicken burgers are back for a summer of feasting. Making its way across the country, Other Side Fried will satiate hungry festival goers with the likes of a honey butter, bacon and pickle topped chicken burger, as well as a bacon and cheese variety.
Where to find them: Big Feastival, Wilderness, Goodwood Festival of Speed, Standon Calling and Farnborough Air Show
What’s on offer: Brighton’s zero-waste restaurant eliminates landfill fodder by trading directly with farmers, avoiding packaging and sending leftovers straight to compost. This summer, it’s hitting the road to spread its eco-friendly message. Expect dishes such as shiitake mushroom on sourdough toast.
Where to find them: Shambala and PX+ Festival
London street food
Some of our favourite street food vendors in the capital
Cook Daily at Boxpark Croydon (above)
What’s on offer: CookDaily’s blend of international vegan dishes has now arrived in Croydon. Opt for a healthy stir-fry, filling ‘chickn’ and mushroom pie, or the Caribbean-inspired ‘Hard Bowl’, made with yam, plantain, ackee and wholemeal dumplings.
Where: 99 George Street, CR0 1LD
Jimmy’s BBQ Club, South Bank
What’s on offer: Jimmy Garcia’s latest project is a Thames-side barbecue pit. Serving a changing six-course tasting menu, dishes include the belt-busting likes of lamb cutlets served with salsa verde, and toasted marshmallows with lashings of chocolate sauce.
Where: Belvedere Road, SE1 8XX
Oxalis at The Shrub & Shutter, Brixton (above)
What’s on offer: Following a successful residency at The Sun & 13 Cantons in Soho, Oxalis has moved on to Brixton’s The Shrub & Shutter. This time around the menu features the likes of a squid ink cracker with brown crab and lardo, and broad bean tortellini with cured egg, rabbit and beef tartar.
Where: 336 Coldharbour Lane, SW9 8QH
Poptata at Boxpark Shoreditch
What’s on offer: This street food outfit recently landed in Boxpark to provide Shoreditch’s hungry with perfectly cooked, thick-cut chips, which are slathered in melted cheese and a variety of sauces – turns out (cheesy chip) heaven really is a place on Earth.
Where: 2-10 Bethnal Green Road, E1 6GY
Smoke & Salt London at Pop Brixton (above)
What’s on offer: Operated by two former chefs from Notting Hill's The Shed, Smoke & Salt combines fine and casual dining, with its modern, seasonal dishes which use international flavours and techniques including brining, curing, fermenting and smoking.
Where: 49 Brixton Station Road, SW9 8PQ
What The Pitta at Boxpark Shoreditch
What’s on offer: Doner kebabs may once have been the preserve of drunken 2am eating, but they've gone rather posh in recent years. What The Pitta has moved into Shoreditch to serve up its signature vegan version of the classic post-night-out meal.
Where: 2-10 Bethnal Green Road, E1 6GY
The success stories
If you prefer to sit down and eat, here’s a short list of pop-ups-gone-permanent that we’re a fan of:
The Cheese Bar
Made of Dough
Patty & Bun
Zoe’s Ghana Kitchen
For more street food in London, take a look at our pop ups page, and to see more food porn, make sure to follow us on Instagram @squaremeal.co.uk