Do you remember way in the past when food trucks were considered “Roach Coaches” and no one in their right mind would eat at one? I think it all changed when Roy Choi created his Mexican-Korean mash-up with his fleet of Koji food trucks. His cookbook memoir is one of my favorites!
Today, I’m celebrating food trucks in KidLit! How about you? Do you enjoy eating at food trucks too? What is your favorite thing to get there? Are there any books that you recommend? Thanks for sharing!
p.s. I also love the movie Chef. Did you know that Jon Favreau hired Roy Choi to learn chef chops. They are buddies and Roy Choi is like a nervous father watching his kid drive for the first time when Jon is chopping and cooking away on the movie set!
Fabulous Food Truck Children’s Books
Little Taco Truck by Tanya Valentine, illustrated by Jorge Martin
We all love a food truck festival with food trucks lined up on a street, but Little Taco Truck feels pushed out when Miss Falafel, Jumbo Gumbo, Annie’s Arepas, and Hello Gelato park on his street. When Little Taco Truck goes very early to stake out a spot, the other food trucks make room. Use this picture book to talk about food trucks, making room for others, and standing up for yourself. [picture book, ages 4 and up]
Food Trucks by Mark Todd
This is absolutely my choice for teaching poetry! Learning about food trucks is a fun bonus! There are also fun facts in bubbles on each page spread. Mark Todd covers all different kinds of food trucks (except Korean-Mexican aka Koji) and couples them with vibrant illustrations. It will make you want to run out to a food truck event! [picture book, ages 4 and up]
Food Truck Fest! by Alexandra Penfold, illustrated by Mike Dutton
A family and a fleet of food trucks head out onboard a ferry. The food truck fest awaits! This rhyming story celebrates the diversity of food cultures at a food truck festival! [picture book, ages 4 and up]
Frankie’s Food Truck by Educational Insights
Frankie’s food truck is a lift-the-flap shape book featuring food on the menu. With seven days of menus, this is a food fest of shapes and delicious items that toddlers and preschoolers can relate to. [lift-the-flap board book, ages 2 and up]
Food Trucks!: A Lift-the-Flap Meal on Wheels! by Jeffrey Burton, illustrated by Jay Cooper
Explore a multicultural food truck fleet with this rhyming board book chock full of flaps. The food featured in this book is more typical of each cuisine, rather than gourmet fusion which is trendy now in food trucks. Still, this is what toddlers and preschools will relate to. [board book, ages 2 and up]
Cookie Monster’s Foodie Truck (Sesame Street) by Heather E. Schwartz
Cookie Monster is certainly qualified to take us on a tour of food trucks! He’s introducing healthy foods like vegetables, fruits, grains, protein, dairy, and more. Even though he loves cookies, he knows it’s a “sometimes” food, not an “all-the-time” food. He’s also cooking up recipes in a food truck! In classic Sesame Street style, this book takes an educational concept and makes it fun! [picture book, ages 6 and up]
Chef Roy Choi and the Street Food Remix by Jacqueline Briggs Martin
Chef Roy Choi calls himself a “street cook.”
He wants outsiders, low-riders,
kids, teens, shufflers, and skateboarders,
to have food cooked with care, with love,
with sohn maash.
“Sohn maash” is the flavors in our fingertips. It is the love and cooking talent that Korean mothers and grandmothers mix into their handmade foods. For Chef Roy Choi, food means love. It also means culture, not only of Korea where he was born but the many cultures that make up the streets of Los Angeles, where he was raised. So remixing food from the streets, just like good music—and serving it up from a truck—is true to L.A. food culture. People smiled and talked as they waited in line. Won’t you join him as he makes good food smiles? [picture book biography, ages 4 and up]
When Life Gives You Lemons, Make Peach Pie by Erin Soderburg Downing
Review by Ms. Yingling Reads:
“It’s hard to go wrong with either books about pie or road trips! It didn’t hurt my feelings at all that this book was set in an area of the US that I have been forced to traverse again and again. Of course, the group doesn’t go to the Wisconsin Dells right away! You have to see the signs for a number of years before you HAVE to stop. There are lots of good details not only about the scenery but about running a food truck and living in campgrounds.” [middle grade, ages 8 and up]
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BEST #OWNVOICES CHILDREN’S BOOKS: My Favorite Diversity Books for Kids Ages 1-12 is a book that I created to highlight books written by authors who share the same marginalized identity as the characters in their books.