Contrary to what some may think about Kauai, the smallest of Hawaii's four main islands, it thrives in the food truck scene. Whether you're on the North Shore, South Shore, West Side, or East Side, you're just a stone's throw away from an array of food trucks offering everything from mixed plates and shaved ice to local coffee (but let's skip the actual stone-throwing, shall we?).

Choosing among Kauai's numerous food truck options poses a delightful dilemma for visitors due to the sheer variety available. To help navigate this culinary landscape, we've curated a guide to the absolute must-visit food trucks on the island, treating them as mobile landmarks of deliciousness you won't want to miss.

Here's our selection of Kauai's standout food trucks for 2024.

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Wailua Shave Ice

Shave ice isn't just a sweet offering in Hawaii; it's a legacy, and savoring it right from a local food truck captures the essence of this island tradition like nothing else.

Enter Wailua Shave Ice: a standout in the shave ice game and, arguably, one of the best you'll find anywhere. The minute you take a bite, you know it's something special.

At its helm is Brandon Baptiste, a Wailua-born maven whose previous chapter includes formative years at the Culinary Institute of America and a professional foray in the culinary halls of the famous French Laundry in California. Then, alongside business cohort Josh Tamaoka, Baptiste redirected his gastronomic arts to a calling rather chill—ushering in Wailua Shave Ice.

Their syrup-kissed confection speaks volumes of quality. Are you eager to experience this frozen craft? It's dished up at 4-831 Kuhio Hwy #206 in Kapaa, with the banners held high from noon to 8:30 PM every splendid day. Swing by, and you'll grasp why—this food truck conveys pure, frosted ardor when it comes to sweet Hawaiian pillars.

Kickshaws

Kickshaws stands out as a cherished gem in Kauai, captivating diners with its ingeniously crafted comfort food offerings.

Spearheaded by Seth Peterson, whose background is in biology, Kickshaws breaks the mold with its innovative approach to cuisine. Peterson leverages his scientific expertise to engineer extraordinary flavor pairings that are as inventive as they are delightful, setting new culinary standards.

The flagship dish, the "100% Awesome Burger," showcases meat that's meticulously cured over 30 hours, epitomizing the establishment's commitment to culinary excellence. Beyond this iconic burger, the eatery frequently updates its menu to introduce fresh, avant-garde creations inspired by Peterson's latest gustatory experiments.

Nestled in Koloa at 5371 Koloa Rd, Kickshaws welcomes food enthusiasts from Wednesday to Saturday, between 11 AM and 3 PM, to explore its ever-evolving menu that promises an adventure for the taste buds.

Hanalei Taro & Juice Co

Cultivated on a local farm that has been in operation for six generations, Hanalei Taro & Juice Co. has embarked on a mission extending beyond its roots, featuring a "lunch wagon" that has become a destination for locals and tourists alike.

Taro, the staple of their offerings, features prominently across their menu. Whether in smoothies or veggie burgers, taro's versatility shines, seamlessly integrating into various dishes.

You'll find this culinary haven on wheels parked at 5-5070 Kuhio Highway in Hanalei, welcoming guests on weekends from 10 am to 4 pm. Additionally, their presence graces the Puhi Park Farmer's Market on Saturdays, from 9:30 am until noon or until supplies run out. Stay in the loop for the latest updates by following Hanalei Taro on Instagram.

Al Pastor Tacos

For those with a taste for Mexican cuisine, the Al Pastor Tacos food truck in Kapaa is a must-visit, consistently ranking high on everyone's favorite list.

Helmed by the dynamic duo Faun and Paulino Hernandez, the standout dish is obviously the namesake Al Pastor Tacos. Yet, don't overlook their equally mouthwatering ahi burritos, which have garnered their own fan following.

Located within the vibrant Kapaa Food Truck Court at 4-1602 Kuhio Highway, Al Pastor welcomes diners every day, except for Mondays, from 11 AM to 5 PM, promising a culinary journey with every visit.

Small Town Coffee

Small Town Coffee, renowned for its signature brews, stands as a cherished morning or afternoon spot among Kapaa's residents.

Affectionately known as the "little red bus in North Kapaa," this cozy coffee haven has been delighting patrons with its select roasts, lattes, and handcrafted pastries since 2004. Situated in the former Kojima Center, its location boasts ample parking, making it a convenient choice for a quick coffee run or a leisurely snack break.

The London Fog latte is a must-try on their menu, a favorite for its unique flavor profile. The breakfast pies, particularly Aunty M’s Paradise pies, offer both veggie and meat options, ensuring there's something for everyone.

You can find Small Town Coffee at 4-1543 Kuhio Highway in Kapaa, open from 6 AM to 2 PM every day except Sunday.

These highlighted picks are merely the tip of the iceberg on an island brimming with an array of food trucks, each offering its unique culinary delights within a compact area. You're almost guaranteed a satisfying meal, with the diversity of food options bound to surprise and delight you.

Thank you for choosing to explore with us, and we wish you an incredible journey ahead!

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