May 5, 2021

Seek out one of these 10 Alabama taco trucks for Cinco de Mayo

5 min read

Taco trucks may be the most popular of all the food trucks that ply workplaces, community events, breweries, and busy byways. They dish the ultimate street food—delicious, portable, versatile, and easy to eat.

While celebrating Cinco de Mayo this week, visit one of these Alabama taco trucks to get your fix.

When ordering tacos, start by choosing the meat you’d like. Popular options include steak, spicy sausage (chorizo), pastor (pork cooked with pineapple), chicken, carnitas (slow-simmered pork), and campechano (a mix of shredded meat and spicy sausage).

Less-familiar fillings include tongue (lengua), cheek meat (cachete), head meat (cabeza), and fried pork skin (chicharron). Try them. Don’t let any ick reflex rob you of a tasty treat.  

Street-style tacos are wrapped in one or two softened corn tortillas and dressed only with onions and cilantro—no cheese, lettuce, or tomatoes. If you like, squeeze on a little lime juice, perhaps pour on house-made red or green salsa.

If tacos aren’t your thing, try a quesadilla, burrito, tostada (flat fried tortilla with toppings), or a torta sandwich. Often vendors serve snacks made from fresh corn dough (masa) like sandal-shaped huraches, round sopes, steamed tamales, and stuffed gorditos.

Don’t be confused if you notice multiple names on the vehicles. The trucks themselves are branded and they also must list the commissary kitchen where the food is made, usually a restaurant or market. 

Greater Birmingham has the largest concentration of Alabama taco trucks. They seem to be everywhere—in the city, the suburbs, and adjoining counties. The Dos Hermanos trucks that set up in Homewood, downtown Birmingham, and weekends in Bessemer have such an enthusiastic cult following they have a Facebook fan page and are regularly written up in food-related publications.

Here’s our list of 10 Alabama taco trucks to try:

Chinito’s Food Truck (Oneonta)

Based in Oneonta, Chinito’s sells burritos, quesadillas, tortas, tamales, street tacos, and what they call American tacos (chicken or ground beef, cheese, lettuce, and chopped tomato in a flour tortilla). A nice selection of fillings includes steak, spicy sausage, carnitas, and tongue—plus birria, stewed beef with its broth served on the side and seared into the taco’s corn tortilla. Recent menu additions include street corn, nachos, and tacos rancheros (eggs and chili-infused ranchero sauce over tortillas).

alabama taco trucks

Fire and Spice (Huntsville)

It launched in 2014 dishing burgers and then pasta in Huntsville before settling on Tex-Mex style tacos. Chicken and pork are smoked over mesquite wood, and brisket is slow-cooked for 13 hours. Most tacos are composed, like the Lone Star with brisket, slaw, onions, jalapeños, bacon crumbles, cheese, and creamy barbecue sauce. Blackened fish anchors the Finding Nemo taco. Quesadillas and barbecue sandwiches also are available.

La Mexicana (Tuscaloosa)

This Tuscaloosa truck’s menu is a crowd-pleaser, with nachos and breakfast burritos joining the standard tacos and quesadillas. Look for specials including corn husk-wrapped steamed tamales; weekend fare may include soups like menudo. Standard meats are steak, carnitas, pastor and chicken.

Los Valedores (Birmingham area)

Generally parked at the intersection of Green Springs Highway and Oxmoor Road in the Birmingham suburb of Homewood, Los Valedores goes beyond tacos with tostadas, sopes, burritos, rolled flautas, ceviche (lime-marinated seafood), and quesadillas. Unusual offerings include a crisp gordita filled with smoky bits of fried pork skins, and tlacoyos, oval-shaped toasted masa with toppings. Meats include steak, pastor, spicy sausage, chicken, pork, campechanos (mixed beef, pork, and sausage), tongue, and cabeza.

Taco Boys (Birmingham area)

Since hitting the streets in 2019, the Taco Boys truck has ranged throughout Jefferson County. Its wide choice of fillings includes standards like steak, carnitas, and chicken as well as hardcore choices like tripas (crispy tripe), ultra-familiar ground beef, and a vegetarian option. In addition to tacos, nachos, quesadillas, and burrito bowls, check out the grilled corn, elote.

Tacos El Tio (Alabaster)

Look for Tacos El Tio at Advance Auto Parts on First Street SW in Alabaster. Meats for tacos, burritos, and quesadillas include steak and chicken. Other taco options are spicy sausage, tripas, pastor, carnitas, shrimp, tongue, and beef suadero (a cut between the belly and leg). Classic tortas include Milaneza (marinated beef), Jamon (ham), Salchicha (sausage), and Cubana (a Mexican invention with multiple meats). Tostada choices include flavorfully unctuous cueritos (stewed pork skin).

Taco Mariachi (Irondale)

Look for tacos, burritos, tortas, and sopes at this Irondale-based truck. You’ll find all the usual fillings like steak, spicy sausage, chicken, and campechano (steak and spicy sausage), along with tripas and tongue. Sopes—meat, refried beans, fresh cheese, salsa and thick crema nestled in a cooked masa base with pinched edges—are a specialty.

Taqueria El Camioncito (Montevallo)

The Montevallo truck’s menu reads like a full-service restaurant, with tacos, burritos, sopes, tortas, nachos, enchiladas, tamales, rellenos, gorditas, and more. Meat choices include steak, chicken, spicy sausage, cachete, tripas, tongue, shrimp, fish, and brisket. Wash it down with an agua fresca (pineapple, hibiscus/Jamaica, or sweetened rice horchata), and finish your meal with a paleta frozen fruit pop.

alabama taco trucks

Taqueria Los Arrieros (Madison)

Meat choices at Madison’s favorite taco truck include steak, carnitas, roast chicken, pastor, cabeza, tongue, and tripas. In addition to tacos, burritos, quesadilla, tortas, and enchiladas, it also makes mulitas, which some describe as a cross between a baby quesadilla and grilled sandwich with top and bottom tortillas.

Taqueria Raquel (Jasper)

Fan favorites at this cash-only truck in Jasper include pastor tacos, steak quesadillas, chicken burritos, tamales, and taco salads. It has built a reputation for generous portions, good prices, and friendly service.

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