Food trucks that expand your BBQ IQ

By Mika Lee and Cait Lee

Summer is here, and you know what that means: festivals, music and food trucks. Specifically, food trucks serving up some of Utah’s most mouthwatering barbecue. With flavors, seasonings and styles ranging from Jamaica to Hawaii and across the U.S., local food trucks allow you to experiment with new types of ’cue along with enjoying your favorite cuts, sauces and sides.

We’ve pulled together a Fab Four of BBQ food trucks sure to entice your taste buds. To find out when and where these purveyors of sauce and spice will roll into your ’hood or near your place of work, simply check their social media, websites and/or their schedule at

Pitmaster Aaron Quayle

Smokin’ Star BBQ
Pitmaster Aaron Quayle takes great pride in his keto-friendly BBQ that incorporates flavors of several American BBQ styles, including Texas-style brisket, Memphis-style ribs and Carolina pulled pork, some of which are smoked up to 14 hours. This North Carolina native keeps his Eastern-style Carolina sauce on hand and serves it upon request (psst, that means it’s a secret-menu item). The cherry on top? The rotating menu of edible cookie dough.

Pulled brisket sandwich on potato bun with baked beans, mac ’n’ cheese and housemade peppermint-cocoa cookie dough

Salty Pineapple’s Shantel Longfellow serves up traditional Hawaiian dishes “with a spin.”

The Salty Pineapple
Daysha Filipe and Shantel Longfellow’s traditional Hawaiian fare recently garnered a $10,000 tip in the tip jar on the Food Network’s Big Food Truck Tip. What started as a Pacific Islander family recipe, Pop’s sweet garlic chicken plate, is now a local favorite. Pineapple coleslaw and pineapple jalapeño BBQ sauce atop kalua pig are other unique menu items. Look for new desserts this summer. Savor the aloha spirit!

Jamaica’s Kitchen’s Donovan Thompson

Jamaica’s Kitchen
Bringing the good vibes with good food is what owner and Jamaican native Donovan Thompson does best. His is Utah’s first Jamaican food truck, serving up mouthwatering jerk chicken, tender oxtail stew and savory goat curry. The secret of his success? His grandma’s sweet-and-spicy jerk sauce that only he has the recipe for. Some menu items require up to a week of preparation and use imported spices, so expect authentic flavors not found elsewhere in town. Gluten free and vegetarian options are also available.

Jamaican jerk chicken with a side of red beans and rice, coleslaw and fried plantain


Rob and Cassandra Pierce at Smokin’ Roadside Grill

Smokin’ Roadside Grill
Rob and Cassandra Pierce are the dynamic duo turning their test kitchen dreams into a roadside reality. Originally from the food-truck capital of Portland, Ore.—now based in Provo—their unique Northwest Style of barbecue is catching fire along the Wasatch Front. “If it needs sauce, I didn’t cook it right,” says Chef Rob. His dry-rub brisket, pork and chicken require up to 20 hours of preparation, giving their brisket a leaner but juicy texture. The loaded mac ’n’ cheese was our favorite pick and an item that can be added on to your next catered event. Next stop? A restaurant for loyal fans.

Dry-rub brisket sandwich with tri-colored baked beans and coleslaw


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