OCTOBER 2019: We’ve added three recent arrivals on the street food scene: Lovely Bunch of Coconuts (Mauritian-inspired BBQ and biryanis), Nonna Tonda (small plates of well-made pasta in Victoria Market Hall) and Sugo (Italian nibbles and seriously Instagrammed ciabatta ‘pockets’ in Vinegar Yard). We’ve also included cult heroes Tongue ’n’ Cheek (famed for its ‘Heartbreaker’ burgers).
Forget Michelin, some of the best food in London is dished up on the street, and eaten with a plastic fork. If you’re a foodie on a budget street food is here to save you. From vegan to-fish tacos, to tea-brined chicken strips, to Kim-Kardashian-inspired koftas, we’ve rounded up the cream of the crop. Pack wet wipes.
RECOMMENDED: Find London’s best street food markets and food halls
London’s best street food
What’s in a name? Judging by the sign above this burrito merchant’s stand, you might think that it was simply another Tex-Mex peddler. Hell, taste the melty deliciousness that is its beer-battered ‘cheeze’ fries and you’d probably come to the same conclusion. But it’s actually an entirely vegan outfit whose South American cuisine is nigh-on indistinguishable from the carnivore-friendly stuff – check out its baja ‘to-fish’ taco (made with deep-fried tofu) if you don’t believe us.
Don't miss: Mexican Fried Chick’n (MFC) burrito with mustard mayo, avocado salsa verde, pickled cabbage, jalapeno, dill (£8)
Find it at: Dinerama, Netil Market, Spread Eagle E9
But first check: clubmexicana
The name says it all – Filipino backyard barbecue on the streets of London, a carnival of sophisticated textures and contrasts. There’s so much action going on in one of their boxes – try the aubergine satay curry or the crispy ‘baboy’ (fragrant pork belly loaded up with sesame green bean salad, pickled cucumber and chicharron) Even better, stump up an extra quid and order the ‘mega’ box containing both items. They also do the same combos stuffed into wraps, along with specials such as pulled pork buns. Such exciting flavours – and such lovely people too.
Don’t miss: Chicken satay curry with pineapple, peas and jasmine rice (£7)
Find it at: Kerb King’s Cross, Kerb West India Quay, Brockley Market
But first check: @BbqDreamz
We can thank seitan (wheat protein) – and, of course, the eponymous Jake – for bringing us steaks without the beef. His signature Philly ‘cheezesteak’ features shredded BBQ seitan, smoky caramelised onions, roasted peppers, sriracha ‘mayo’ and sweet mustard on a toasted brioche roll but adds an extra squeeze of melted ‘cheeze whizz’ sauce on top. The fungi and truffle riff with béarnaise sauce is a luxury ticket for mushroom addicts, while thyme-seasoned skin-on fries are a must-have all round.
Don’t miss: Philly Cheezesteak (£8.50)
Find it at: Victoria Park Market
But first check: @Jakesveganstks
Purveyors of Mauritian-inspired street food, Lovely Bunch of Coconuts do two things brilliantly – BBQ meats and biyranis. Free-range Welsh lamb and Norfolk chicken get top billing (have both if you’re feeling greedy), but the vegan biryani flavoured with citrussy lemon and coconut milk is also spot-on if you’re doing the plant-based thing. Chutneys and slaws are already loaded in the box, but other extras such as fresh grated coconut, dried chili flakes and crispy onions are available to add at your own discretion. It’s also worth ordering some chargrilled Mauritian roti too.
Don’t miss: vegan biryani (£7)
Find it at: Kerb King’s Cross, Brockley Market, Victoria Park Market
But first check: @ourcoconuts
Mike Richardson studied design at Goldsmiths before realising that his real calling was creating magnificent handmade, organic flatbreads charred with za’atar. Ollie is no longer a part of the set-up, but the name has stuck. Mike’s freshly made wraps are brimming with seasonal treats ranging from line-caught mackerel with, say, wild garlic aïoli and nettle sauce to braised charred leeks with blood orange, coriander and almonds. Choose up to three sides – perhaps grilled rainbow carrots or braised puy lentils.
Don’t miss: Slow-roast spiced lamb shoulder flatbread with forced Yorkshire rhubarb hot sauce (£8.50)
Find it at: Brockley Market
But first check: @mikeandollie
It’s pretty rare to find burgers cooked ‘pretty rare’ these days, but Burger Boy is one of the few exceptions. His star turn is a cheeseburger pimped up with nuggets of nicely chewy candy bacon, plus red onion and lettuce – all in a soft brioche bun. We reckon this one tastes best when generously lathered with a punchy sauce – BB has a huge range including chipotle mayo. He does a corn dog too, and his add-ons range from black pudding to mac ’n’ cheese croquettes.
Don’t miss: Cheese and candy bacon burger, £6.50 (single), £9.50 (double)
Find it at: Street Food Union Soho
But first check: @BurgerBoyUK
Mother Clucker’s salvaged US army ambulance is still parked up outside the Truman Brewery, but this soul-food specialist now has pitches across town serving up a special brand of Southern-style chook. Brined in sweet tea for 24 hours, soaked in buttermilk and double-fried, its delicious (halal) offerings come with a dark-brown peppery crumb – but with half the grease and double the crunch. All you need is some hot sauce for dipping, a side of mac ’n’ cheese and a can of ice-cold Tang to wash it down.
Don't miss: Tea-brined buttermilk-dredged fried chicken strips (£6 for three)
Find it at: Ely’s Yard @ Truman Brewery, Exmouth Market, Flat Iron Square, Hawker House
But first check: @motherclucker
Just because it’s healthy doesn’t mean it sucks, and these guys aren’t half proving it. Using hearty ingredients, Savage Salads sell lunchboxes that are full of food to make your mouth water and your mum proud (anyone for roasted beetroot, pearl barley, pea shoots and sunflower seeds?). The queue for its stand is always worth the effort – the results are incomparably better than the supermarket salad bar equivalent and you get a welcoming smile rather than a self-service checkout at the end of it.
Don’t miss: marinated chicken breast, halloumi and a choice of salads (£7.50)
Find it at: Berwick Street Market, Flat Iron Square, Strutton Ground Market, Elephant West (White City)
But first check: @savagesalads
Taco Juan, sure. Taco Tomas? Maybe. Taco Dave? Not the sort of first name that has you shouting ‘sí, señor!’ But one mouthful of Dave’s meltingly tender beef brisket, all sticky with Dr Pepper glaze, and his name will be etched into your taste buds. The Dr Pepper thing is more than a gimmick, too – you can’t taste the mysterious fizzy drink as such, but you can certainly tell it’s been there. Also brace yourself for his cornflake fried chicken and veggie ideas such as halloumi with pomegranate molasses.
Don’t miss: Dr Pepper and chipotle beef brisket taco (£6 for two, £8 for three)
Find it at: Kerb King’s Cross, Kerb Gherkin, Broadway Market
But first check: @taco__dave
Bucking the trend for bao, Biàn Dāng makes its living by serving up big-value Taiwanese boxes loaded with fluffy rice, ‘zingy zangy’ pickles, stir-fried vegetables and marbled tea eggs to go with its headline components. We rate the flash-fried (boneless) pork chop version very highly (marinated in Taiwanese style, then lightly coated in sweet potato flour), but the luscious crumbed white oyster mushrooms tossed with peppery salt are a cute veggie option – although greedy omnivores should spend an extra £2 and get ‘the beast’ (a bit of everything)!
Don’t miss: BD box with crumbed oyster mushrooms (£8)
Find it at: Kerb King’s Cross, Kerb Gherkin and other Kerb branches (locations vary)
But first check: @biandangUk
A regular sight at festivals and street markets, Tongue ‘n’ Cheek’s nomadic meat masters have built up a cult following for its gutsy left-field bites. Just consider its awesome ‘Heartbreaker’ burgers based on dry-aged native-breed beef (sourced from Bermondsey’s finest, The Butchery). Some love the ‘Belly Connection’ (topped with 24-hour cooked pork belly, gorgonzola, pimiento mayo, pickled red onions and lettuce), but our current fave is the riff with candied bacon, cheddar and BBQ mayo. If burgers aren’t your thing, the menu also touts a ‘porky sub’, a Philly cheesesteak sandwich and a ‘no-lobster’ roll made with sautéed cod cheeks.
Don’t miss: Candied bacon burger (£8.50)
Find it at: Camden Market, Strutton Ground Market, Kerb Gherkin
But first check: @tonguencheeks
It may be a trend of the past these days, but sometimes all that will truly fill your belly is a big, fat burrito. Luardos stuff itss with flavour – the chicken option is poached with garlic and bay leaves, the pork slow-cooked with fennel and orange. Traditional pico de gallo, smooth guacamole, crunchy lettuce and Monterey Jack cheese all join in to make this mealtime a food fiesta. Also, look out for other items such as the ceviche tostada and beef brisket taco.
Don't miss: Chipotle beef burrito (£5.50)
Find it at: Whitecross Street, Brockley Market, various Kerb sites, Gipsy Queen pub Belsize Park
But first check: @Luardos
Given that they’re the only ‘luxury flat’ your average Londoner can afford, it’s a good job these fat flatbreads stuffed with fresh, crisp salads and generous chunks of tender meat are every bit as desirable as their bricks-and-mortar namesakes. The bread comes from legendary Dalston bakery Ararat Breads, while the already impressive headline slots (koji fried chicken, edamame falafel etc.) are matched by additions including fennel kimchi and mirin yoghurt – all piled up high-rise style. Definitely avoid shared ownership.
Don’t miss: Miso-braised beef flatbread (£6)
Find it at: Kerb King’s Cross, Kerb Gherkin, Kerb West India Quay, Netil Market
But first check: @lxryflats
Nice buns just don’t cut it for these guys; the carbs they’re cooking up are nothing short of fantastic. Each fluffy, steamed pocket holds a stack of ingredients that’s more enticing than a bacon sandwich on a hangover. Choose from charming little flavour grenades such as slow-roast pork belly, panko-crusted cod, Japanese-style chicken, the not-to-be-overlooked portobello mushrooms with toasted walnuts and miso glaze or aromatic tofu with black-bean mayo. You can even get ice-cream cinnamon buns (apple or coffee) at some locations.
Don’t miss: Slow-roasted pork belly with cucumber, spring onions and hoisin sauce (£4.50 each, £8 for two)
Find it at: The Kitchen Spitalfields Market, Street Feast Giant Robot, Dinerama, Hawker House
But first check: @yumbun
School chums James McGurn and Henry Sutton share a love of all things steak and decided to prove the point with a street-food stand serving British meat dressed in Argentinian gaucho garb. All the dry-aged beef is from grass-fed native breeds reared in Yorkshire, while its wood and charcoal are supplied by the London Log Co. Steaks with skin-on fries and zingy chimichurri are the mainstays, but it also does specials including beef-shin nuggets (with burnt shallot and anchovy mayo), beer-fed dexter burgers and steak baguettes with lashings of gravy.
Don’t miss: ‘French Dip Steak Sando’ with cheese fondue, beef-fat confit onion and garlic butter (£10)
Find it at: Dinerama, Vinegar Yard (London Bridge)
But first check: @upinmygrilluk
A cut above your average street-food outfit peddling grilled cheese sandwiches, Meltsmiths’ magnificent melty masterpieces are a big hit wherever they decide to pitch camp. Okay, you could go for ‘ham about town’ with English mustard or ‘the spicy boy’ (fired up with sriracha, jalapeños and crispy onions), but we can’t get past ‘the classic’ with its combo of mature cheddar, mozzarella and onion jam. Just add some sweet-potato fries with stilton mayo and Frank’s RedHot on the side.
Don’t miss: Classic cheese toastie (£6)
Find it at: Kerb (locations vary), Victoria Park Market
But first check: @Meltsmiths
‘Chay’ means ‘vegetarian’ in Vietnamese, but these guys actually give your street-food favourites a totally vegan twist – thanks to seitan, walnut and mushroom pâté, lemongrass soya, sriracha ‘mayo’, seaweed ‘crunch’ and other goodies. Here you’ll find plant-based versions of bánh mì, bibimbap, noodle salads, steamed bao buns (filled with kimchi, Korean fried tofu and even fake ‘char siu’) as well as excellent lunchtime bento boxes with a choice of bao and noodle salad.
Don’t miss: Soya ‘chick’n’ noodle salad with vegan fish sauce (£7.50)
Find it at: Boxpark Shoreditch, Borough Market, Roof East Stratford
But first check: @EatChayClub
Swerving all those touristy stereotypes, Sugo peddles the kind of street food you’d find in Rome, Palermo and other Italian cities. Our top picks from its site in Vinegar Yard are the (veggie) mushroom and truffle arancini and the vegan chickpea fries slathered in white truffle aïoli, sun-dried tomato sauce and parmesan, but for something more substantial it’s a toss-up between the ‘melting meatballs’ in tomato passata and the pesto chicken (with more of that aïoli). Tip: have your chosen main boxed up with brown rice and salad – Sugo’s heavily Instagrammed ciabatta ‘pockets’ are way too bready and filling after all those snacks.
Don’t miss: Mushroom and truffle arancini (£5)
Find it at: Vinegar Yard (London Bridge)
But first check: sugo_uk
Mark Gevaux is living proof that you’re better off starting a business because you’re really good at it rather than because you think it’s on-trend. While working as a butcher, he began cooking ribs on disposable barbecues at farmers’ markets; demand was high and in 2007 The Rib Man was born. His smoky, succulent baby backs have been shredded, piled high into white baps and drizzled with insanely spicy sauces ever since.
Don’t miss: The rib meat roll with loads of Holy Fuck hot sauce (£7)
Find it at: Outside the London Stadium (every West Ham home game ), Brick Market every Sunday (but beware it usually sells out before 2pm).
But first check: @theribman
When Ghanaians say ‘chalé’ they mean ‘old friend’, and ‘Let’s Eat!’ is Alicia Ama’s matey invitation to try some native food from her West African home country. If you want to tread gently, plump for the mild chicken ‘flo’ (in a sweet pepper, tomato and palm fruit stew) but we prefer the more challenging beef azi desi (spicy beef in peanut butter stew with butternut squash and okra) – plus some rice, sticky plantain and anise slaw on the side. Also order the jollof rice and the veggie ‘coco greens’ if they show up on the menu.
Don’t miss: Beef azi desi (£9)
Find it at: Kerb King’s Cross, Kerb Paddington, Kerb West Indian Quays
But first check: @ChaleLetsEat
‘All roads lead to a kebab’ says the slogan, and the backpacking Babek Brothers leave no global stone unturned when it comes to sourcing ideas and ingredients for its flavour-packed goodies. These guys have a sense of humour too: they named its veggie riff Nigel Fromage (Cypriot halloumi, garlic yoghurt, fig jam, pickled onions, charred peppers), and you can guess what goes into its Tikka Turner. Did we mention they sell cocktails, beer and wine too?
Don’t miss: Kim Koftashian: lamb kofta, garlic yoghurt, Babek smoky relish (£8)
Find it at: Dinerama, Street Feast Hawker House, Winterville Clapham Common (seasonal)
But first check: @babekbrothers
Mother Flipper’s thing is putting its patties – all served medium – on to the grill as balls, and then smashing them down with a spatula to give them a good crust. Some come topped with huge wedges of avocado, others drip oozy Swiss cheese: but they’re all pretty damned hefty. Top of the heap is the legendary Dirty Barbie double-header, but its line-up also includes Korean fried chicken wings and a ‘flipper’ (kaarage-style chicken thigh with shredded cabbage and yuzu mayo). They also serve breakfast muffins at the weekend.
Don't miss: The Dirty Barbie – double patty, double cheese, candied bacon, candied onions, barbecue sauce (£10)
Find them at: Brockley Market, Kerb (locations vary)
But first check: @MotherFlipperuk
It started as a pop-up, but this outfit from Italophiles James and Rebecca French is now one of the ‘hidden gems’ in the Victoria Market Hall complex. Nonna Tonda is rightly famed for its small plates of well-made pasta – from cacia e pepe or tagliarini with dorset clams, chilli, garlic and samphire to the stonkingly good tagliatelle with longhorn beef ragù. But that’s not all. Also check out its tuscan panzanella salad, its torta caprese with pistachios and its homemade lemonade.
Don’t miss: Tagliatelle with longhorn beef ragù (£9.50)
Find it at: Victoria Market Hall
But first check: nonna_tonda
The best things come in small packages, or so they say. And ‘they’ would be right on this occasion, because The Gyoza Guys are packing a huge amount of pure unadulterated flavour into its dumplings. There are just four varieties (roast duck with hoisin, pork belly and chives, chicken with cabbage and a mixed seafood version stuffed with crustacean freshness), but each one is special – and the combo box means you don’t have to choose between them anyway.
Don’t miss: Gyoza Guys combo box (five gyoza, sesame noodles and Japanese chop salad, £8)
Find it at: Maltby Street Market, Venn Street market, Lloyd Park Market, Victoria Park Market
But first check: @gyozaguys
Assembling all the right stuff for a hand-held nosh, Lils Falafel is all about unusually moist vegan/veggie balls which come packed into wraps with vibrant salads, pickles and sauces. These impressively moist little beauties are full to bursting with all those vibrant flavours and textures we love so much. If you’re after a takeaway lunch, we suggest ordering one of their salad boxes, and adding some feta for an extra quid.
Don’t miss: Vegan falafel wrap with salads and sauces (£6)
Find it at: Street Food Union Soho
But first check: @lil_falafel
From a distance, Patate’s bold little bun looks like your average burger, but its secret is that the patty isn’t a patty at all. It’s a Gallic pile of super-rich beef bourguignon, warmed and crisped on a hotplate then drenched in melted raclette, tome de bournette or any other specialist French ‘cheese du moment’ they have on offer. A bit of lettuce is the token greenery and a generous dollop of chilli béarnaise sauce coats the top half of the brioche roll. It’s as luscious as a velvet smoking jacket.
Don’t miss: Beef bourguignon burger (£7)
Find it at: Camden Market, Kerb West India Quay, Victoria Park Market
But first check: @thepatateuk
For what looks like a stir-fry made with leftover crêpes, the Sri Lankan street speciality kothu roti sure has a lot going on. Strips of a flatbread called godhamba are piled with vegetables, egg and curry on a heated iron sheet and chopped up using a pair of blunt metal blades (Kothu Kothu means ‘chop chop’). The result is lightly curried comfort food that promises a new flavour sensation with every mouthful.
Don't miss: Mutton kothu roti (£7)
Find it at: Boxpark Croydon
But first check: @Kothu_Kothu
Having worked as a chef under some big-name players, Tom Bickers is now indulging his personal passion for truffles with this perambulating street-food set-up. You’ll find the famously earthy fungus in a sauce with his wild mushroom arancini and in the gravy used to douse his chips; also watch out for his beef and smoked bacon burger with fig jam, truffle mayo, crispy onion and raclette. However, those who want a real plateful of goodness should look no further than the 5oz hanger steak, served with truffled mash made from ‘the finest ratte (potatoes) in the land’ – according to Tom.
Don’t miss: Hanger steak with truffled mash (£8)
Find it at: Kerb King’s Cross, Kerb West India Quay, Broadway Market
But first check: @Trufflelondon
We’re lucky Justin Unsworth and Ross Gardner (ex-Medcalf, RIP) chucked in its restaurant jobs to sell chicken, because its birds are seriously good. The original headliner was free-range rotisserie poultry, but its buttermilk fried chicken baps loaded with slaw and Korean hot sauce are now stealing the show – although there are also plenty of takers for the chicken wings, disco fries and occasional guests such as poutine topped with jerk pork belly.
Don’t miss: Buttermilk fried chicken bap (£7)
Find it at: Brockley Market, Southbank Centre Food Market
But first check: @SpitandRoast
Jerk chicken strips triple-dipped in cream-soda batter is surely the sort of innovation that street-food stalls were made for, but you must try the whole menu here, because Only Jerkin’s fried chicken is freakin’ delicious. As is its homemade jerk ketchup, its jerk gravy and its jerk fries topped with chilli and mango aïoli. Basically, save space for this one because a ‘mixed box’ is where it’s at.
Don’t miss: Jerk chicken nuggets triple-dipped in ginger-beer batter (£8)
Find it at: Camden Market, Kerb (locations vary), Street Food Union
But first check: @OnlyJerkin
Truckloads of Middle Eastern flatbreads are being toasted, filled and rolled in London, but Laffa goes that extra mile – even naming itself after the wraps it produces. The owners cook ingredients to order and add expertly flavoured rainbow salads before loading the whole lot into herby, fragrant bundles of joy drizzled with piquant sauces. Also, check out its stuffed pittas and little houmous bowls topped with grilled aubergine.
Don’t miss: Jerusalem spiced chicken wrap (£7)
Find them at: Flat Iron Square
But first check: @Laffastreetfood
At Kate de Lord and Jack Hogarth’s ‘kati roll’ stand, all the warmth and spice of fragrant homemade curry gets wrapped up in what’s basically Indian eggy bread – a flaky, soft paratha crisped in ghee and a freshly cracked egg. If you’re looking for a meat-free main, they don’t come more satisfying than its paneer roll; hearty but not heavy, spicy and not spendy. Also, be sure to add some tamarind and date ketchup. its keema and cheese samosa shards have also made a triumphant comeback.
Don’t miss: Paneer kati roll (£8)
Find it at: Camden Market, Roof East Stratford, Broadway Market
But first check: @Kolkati
Like a Eurovision entry amidst a sea of indie bands, The Grilling Greek’s truck is cheerful, colourful and fiercely patriotic. Which figures, given that it serves up a fine menu of Mediterranean classics such as giant kalamata olives, red pepper houmous and stonking souvlaki. GG’s fresh, soft pitta bread is stuffed with tomato, red onion, a good dollop of ‘mama’s tzatziki’ and smoky chunks of grilled meat (or halloumi). Don’t forget to order some triple-cooked chips too.
Don't miss: Souvlaki ‘meal combo’ with chips and a drink (£10)
Find it at: Camden Market, Kerb (locations vary), Street Feast Hawker House
But first check: @thegrillinggreek
We couldn't have told you what Al-Andalus Moorish cuisine involved before we tried Nazarí’s flavour-stuffed chicken wrap, but we sure like it now. The sibling owners take the best Middle Eastern and Mediterranean flavours to create dishes that have twice the taste per mouthful; the chicken’s slow-cooked with garlic, parsley and spices and wrapped up in a rainbow of Ottolenghi-ish salads with pomegranate molasses. It does mean falafel wraps too (plus gluten-free and vegan salad boxes).
Don’t miss: Pulled chicken flatbread wrap (£7)
Find them at: Camden Market
But first check: @nazarifood
If you’re any kind of London street eater you’ll probably know that Yum Bun are experts in the fluffy, flavour-stuffed hirata bun. However, this second venture proves that they’re also experts in dumplings. Choose from three sorts of soft little steamed parcels: pork and chive with xian chilli oil; mushroom with cashews and green oil; chicken with spicy peanut satay and coriander (a recent addition to the menu). Yumplings’ mini offer also extends to crispy gyoza with duck, hoisin and veg.
Don’t miss: Mushroom dumplings with cashews and green oil (£5 for three, £9 for six)
Find it at: Dinerama, Street Feast Hawker House
But first check: @yumbun
The owners of this South American street-food outfit have referred to its carayaca arepa as ‘the Venezuelan chip butty’, but that’s rather like calling Rio Carnival the Brazilian version of a village fete. Freshly made cornbread pockets (arepas) get stuffed with family recipes for refried black beans, guava-glazed chicken, fried plantain and plenty more. As well as its perfect avocado salsa, the little pockets of hot, salty queso fresco will certainly have us coming back for more. Note that Petares’ Camden pitch specialises in cachapas (maize flour pancakes).
Don’t miss: Venezuelan cassava arepas (£6, two for £10)
Find it at: Street Feast Hawker House, Camden Market
But first check: @petareuk
Fortunately, no birds’ mouths were used in the making of Bill or Beak’s stonking burger-style sandwiches, both of which are innovative versions of much-loved poultry classics. The Bill (duck) combo is usually oriental, while Beak (chicken) often gets the American treatment with special caesar dressing, tempura capers, croûtons and parmesan in a brioche bun – although it could also be a sichuan-style burger with miso mayo and fermented chilli sauce.
Don’t miss: Slow-braised duck and pork in Vietnamese dressing with mint, coriander, spring onions and tempura shallots (£6.50).
Find it at: Camden Market, Kerb (locations vary), Dalston Street Feast, Lewisham Model Market, Brockley Market
But first check: @BillorBeak
Sometimes all it takes is one person to do something brilliantly to put everyone else’s efforts to shame. Such is the case with Scotchtails – take one bite of their generously meaty, perfectly gooey scotch eggs and you’ll shun the lesser offerings of your local pub for life. There are more than 10 varieties to choose from, and their crisp sweet potato fries make ideal soldiers for that bright orange yolk.
Don't miss: ‘Meal box’ of a scotch egg (your choice) with sweet potato fries (£6.90)
Find it at: Borough Market
But first check: @Scotchtails
Italy’s got plenty of food inventions to boast about without adding the piadina to the roster, but these magical flatbreads are definitely worth a punt. Jack Padoan’s grandad Gianni introduced him to this northern Italian speciality, and Jack has given it a British twist. Look out for the Lincolnshire special (local sausage, burrata, streaky bacon and wasabi rocket), which was inspired by his upbringing in the aforementioned county.
Don’t miss: ‘The Hot Honey’: fried chicken thigh, hot honey, pickled cucumber, smoky bacon mayo (£9)
Find it at: The Sir Colin Campbell, Kilburn
But first check: @thepiadinaproject
Taking your street-food lunch to new levels of fancy, the guys at Stakehaus are grilling hot, pink, juicy slabs of beef and serving them up with the crispiest hand-cut rosemary chips, a dash of salad and some very impressive sauces – its ‘secret’ version is spot on, but also try the fiery chilli butter and the peppercorn riff. And all for around a tenner. This one calls for a stake-out.
Don’t miss: ‘The Green One’: 5oz Angus steak with courgette fries and sauce (£10)
Find it at: Camden Market, Giant Robot Canary Wharf
But first check: @STAKEhaus
‘The original creators of halloumi fries’ boasts Oli Baba’s website, but there’s a lot more to this street-food outfit than pimped-up veggie nibbles – and there’s nothing everyday about its meat-free Levantine lunchboxes. Big piles of fresh, herby salads, crunchy sweet potato fries, smoky Turkish-style flatbreads and a heap of super creamy houmous make up the sort of meal that would make even a butcher consider going veggie.
Don't miss: Halloumi fries with pomegranate molasses, za’atar yoghurt, sumac, mint and Turkish chilli (£6)
Find it at: Camden Market, Netil Market
But first check: @Oli_Babas
It’s all about the deliciously smoky, burnt taste of Indonesian BBQ at Makatcha – a street-food outfit that’s on a mission to revolutionise the way we think about Indo-Malay cooking. Its slow-cooked rendangs (chicken, beef or vegan) are bang-on, but don’t ignore its Balinese chicken merah with spicy tomato sauce, the BBQ wings with tangy ‘black manis’ sauce or the small plates of chargrilled ‘burnt’ broccoli with homemade peanut sauce for dunking.
Don't miss: Eight-hour pulled beef rendang (£10)
Find it at: Bang Bang Colindale, Camden Market, Kerb West India Quay, Broadway Market
First check: @Makatcha_Eats
The Vietnamese got their baguette habit from French invaders, and Bittenclub is bringing that full circle with a menu of bánh mì sandwiches that have been given a French twist. A crisp white breadstick (baked by north London’s Celtic Bakers) is stuffed with crunchy veg, chilli and whichever protein takes your fancy. Honeyed confit duck with tamari and homemade sriracha comes highly recommended, but also check out the ‘cluck’ (five-spice chicken) and veg versions.
Don’t miss: Honeyed confit duck mì (£8)
Find it at: Flat Iron Square
But first check: @bittenclub
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