Creative dishes, cute setups, customizable options, a unique dining experience—it’s no wonder food truck weddings have exploded in popularity in recent years. A flexible, fun and (potentially) more affordable catering option, a food truck could make your special day one you and your guests won’t soon forget.
While there are some limitations to consider, there are plenty of reasons why a food truck could be the best fit for your wedding party. In general, food trucks work within a variety of venues, aesthetics and budgets. They can be dressed up or dressed down, give a little local flair and provide plenty of options for drinking and dining.
So, if you’re wondering whether a food truck wedding is right for you, here are some questions to ask yourself (and our answers!) to guide you through the decision-making process for your big day.
7 questions you should ask yourself before booking a food truck for your wedding.
1) Is good food a priority for you?
If having good, memorable food is a priority for you and your spouse-to-be, then a food truck wedding could offer the most unforgettable dining experience.
Why? For starters, food trucks have a huge variety of cuisine types and dining experiences. For instance, you could simply do a spirits truck for cocktail hour and appetizers before the ceremony, or you could book a taco and pizza truck for brunch, lunch or dinner. If dessert or late-night munchies are your thing, you could hire a cute ice cream, cupcake, donut or churros and hot chocolate truck to serve guests in lieu of a traditional wedding cake cutting. Or you could have a falafel truck roll up next to the dance floor for a late-night snack.
Going with a food truck also gives you the chance to introduce out-of-towners to one of the best aspects of where you’re getting married—the street food scene! With so many options out there—from tacos to grilled cheese to falafel—the hardest part might just be deciding what to get.
2) When are you getting married?
While food trucks operate year-round in California, it’s important to consider the weather and time of day when deciding what type of items to serve. During the Summer or warmer months, you may want to go with cooler fair, like an ice cream truck. Whereas during the colder seasons you may want some heartier items like grilled cheese and tomato soup or a churro truck.
And if Covid safety is still a priority when planning your wedding, an outdoor food truck event might just be your safest option.
3) Are you going for an upscale or a more casual vibe?
If the answer is casual and laid back, then a food truck is the way to go. While a food truck can certainly have gourmet food, the experience is undeniably more casual.
Unless you hire wait staff to serve your guests (which ups the total cost), most food truck catering is grab and sit. And while you can rent or bring along your own linens, china, and silverware, most trucks will serve their dishes with (recyclable or compostable) disposable cutlery and napkins. The biggest perk: cleanup is much easier!
Another perk of going with this casual aesthetic is that it makes for truly unique photos.
4) Do you want full-service catering, or are you happy with a food-led experience?
Most food trucks operate within a two-hour window. They pull up, serve up, pack up and roll out. That means if you’re wanting a sit-down experience with servers and a full cleaning service, you’ll have to consider hiring a catering team to support the truck.
While less formal, this setup allows you and your guests to simply enjoy the evening. Typically weddings follow a standard script that includes a seated dinner. By eliminating that and cake cutting, your guests can have the flexibility to eat as much as they want, when they want and spend the rest of the event mingling and dancing.
5) Is cost a big factor? What about the length of service?
While most food trucks have lower minimums than most traditional caterers—ranging from $500-$5000—total cost depends on the number of guests you’re serving and the type of cuisine you want. For weddings above 150 people, you’ll want to book two trucks.
Each truck has different ways of pricing. Some price per person, while others charge on consumption. It’s best to understand how it works and get a good estimate based on your guest count in advance to save money and avoid any sticker shock at the end. (Off the Grid can help you with that!)
6) What venues are you considering?
A local food truck is probably the best option for a venue that doesn’t have a traditional kitchen. If you’re hosting your reception in a field or open-air space, a private residence, or somewhere entirely non-traditional, a food truck can be a much easier and more economical fix than creating a prep space from scratch.
And if the main meal at your event will be served from a food truck, you’ll need a space that’s large enough to accommodate the truck that isn’t too far away from your guests’ tables.
7) Do you need to factor in insurance or permitting?
For events on private property, you generally won’t need a permit. But, if you’re in a public space, you might need special event, parking and fire code permits, which vary by city and county. If you’re not working with a food truck with event experience, you’ll want to check with your local municipality, your wedding venue, wedding planner or a food truck event coordinator, like Off the Grid.
Convinced? Here’s how you get a food truck at your wedding.
In summary, food trucks are best suited for wedding parties that have open-air space, are looking for a unique experience and are comfortable working with more than one vendor to meet all their catering needs. If all those things line up for you, then this wedding catering option is for you.
If you’ve decided that a food truck might not be the best fit for your wedding reception, perhaps it could work for your rehearsal dinner or wedding shower. The options to create a memorable food experience are endless.
If you’re ready to start wedding planning or need more guidance, you can check out Off the Grid’s Ultimate Food Truck Wedding Guide for everything you need to know about planning and booking.
Our dedicated team is here for you. We’re excited to help you make your wedding day one of the most memorable, delicious experiences or your life.