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How to start a food truck business with good profits

If you want to start a business to start being your own boss, you have surely considered starting a food truck. And it is that, at first glance, it seems that a large investment is not needed to start, and most seem to be doing well. But how much money could you really make?

We’ll tell you then!

Food truck business with good sales

According to the Mashed site, it is common for food trucks in major cities in the country to have sales of between $ 20,000 and $ 50,000 a month. On the other hand, if you settle in a smaller or medium-sized city, you would end up earning between $ 5,000 and $ 16,000 a month.

Additionally, a Food Truck Empire survey (conducted of 223 food truck owners in Florida, New York, Texas, Oregon, and California) found that these entrepreneurs had the following yearly earnings:

–21.52% earned more than $ 200,000

–30.04% earned $ 150,000 to $ 199,000

–34.08% earned from $ 100,000 to $ 149,000

–10.76% earned $ 50,000 to $ 99,000

–3.59% earned less than $ 49,000

Costs to start a food truck business

Obviously, the biggest cost is the food truck, which can cost you between $ 15,000 and $ 100,000. In addition, you will have to pay insurance of between $ 2,000 and $ 4,000 dollars, according to data published in Mashed.

Added to this, you will have to pay for kitchen equipment, permits, licenses, and a machine to process payments, among other things. In other words, in total, your investment could be at least $ 28,000 or as much as $ 115,000 at its highest point.

How to start a Food Truck or Food Truck business

Whether it’s around the corner from your office or on the big screens in movie theaters, it feels like we see food trucks everywhere today. It’s not a surprise considering that food trucks bring in $ 804 million annually, according to IBISWorld’s Food Trucks in the US market research report, and the industry has grown more than 12% since 2009.

Being mobile definitely has its advantages, but there is a lot to consider before you can get gas and start your food truck.

Pros and Cons of a Food Truck or Food Truck vs. a restaurant

The Food Truck Community or Food Truck

Anna Kenny and Lorne Rodriguez, who run Chicago’s successful food truck 5411 Empanadas, agree that the strong community within the food truck world is an important asset. Rather than being fierce competitors, food truck buddies are likely to look out for one another, share tips and information, and lend a hand when needed.

Inconsistent Sales & Cash Flow

Of course, starting and running a food truck business has its challenges. Kenny and Rodriguez find that predicting sales can be difficult due to the holidays, the weather, and the sheer whim of diners. The truck itself can become a problem; Trucks can break down and become uncomfortable on hot or cold days.


However, with its low audience and location flexibility, a food truck has many advantages over a brick and mortar restaurant. The truck’s mobility allows vendors to be in multiple locations in a day, following hungry people from the morning rush to meal breaks and post-drink meals.

Low start-up costs & Fixed costs

A food truck doesn’t need a large kitchen, serving staff, and all the tables, plates, and equipment that come with a restaurant. In addition to reducing personnel and equipment costs, rent and many other expenses are minimal.

If you’ve been considering starting a food truck, delicious food is only part of the business. Find out the essentials that are needed, from preparation to marketing.

1. Research to ensure the success of your FoodTruck or food truck business

Just because it can be easier pulling a food truck out of the ground compared to a brick and mortar restaurant doesn’t mean it’s easy. Avoid nasty surprises by laying the foundation and consider chatting with someone else in your town’s food truck community for tips and strategies for success.

2. Create your food truck menu

Some factors that will help you decide what will be on your food truck menu are heavily influenced by what will work in a truck in terms of:

    • food storage
    • kitchen equipment
    • food preparation

what cooking method you will use, such as grilling, sautéing, baking, smoking, broiling or frying …

When developing a food truck menu, you have to consider price as well as seasonality. For example, a soup or chili truck will have few customers in the summer months.

3. Serve the menu in the Food Truck

After determining the menu, there are quite a few questions you will have to ask yourself about serving food to your customers, such as …

Will the utensils be necessary, or will it serve food to eat with your hands?

Will the food you serve need condiments, and if so, will the truck have individual packets of ketchup and mustard, or serving bottles or jars?

Will you need plates, glasses, or other paper containers to go?

4. Find the right food truck or food truck

You should research the types of food trucks before purchasing them, as some vehicles are better than others. Truck prices and functionality vary depending on whether you choose:

    • a mobile food preparation vehicle serving customers while they wait

5. Ingredients and supplies needed

Research to determine what you’ll need to buy, from ingredients to packaging to kitchen equipment, and find out where you’ll get the best deal. During the first few days of sales, keep orders low until you can better predict sales.

6. Menu Price

The flip side of the search is price – what will you charge for your food? Find out what similar food trucks are charging and what food trucks in your city are charging. See how much your supplies cost and make sure the prices are fixed so that you can make a profit.

7. Find a place to prepare food

Be aware that some cities, like Chicago, do not allow food preparation inside trucks. Also, the confined space of a food truck does not always allow for food preparation. If that’s the case with your menu or the city, you may need to rent a space or create a commercial kitchen.

8. Get licenses, permits and other papers from the food truck

The paperwork required to start the food truck is significant, and varies by city. Some common documents required for food truck businesses include:

    • Food Truck Licenses and Permits
    • Register the name of your food truck
    • Sanitary inspection
    • A business license

Food truck owners will tell you, it can be quite confusing trying to keep up with and understand all the different mobile vending laws to get all the required credentials. The laws and permits that pertain to food trucks in your state, county, and city are among the first things you need to research.

9. Map of good spots to park the truck

You’ll want to go where the customers are, making sure there isn’t too much competition in the area, and that you can find an affordable parking spot. This may mean leaving early and spending time sitting on site, waiting for mealtime to come. (And that’s how long you will have to pay employees if they are waiting by your side.)

Write down a routine, so that customers can trust to find you in certain places. While you can experiment with finding the best, busiest, and most profitable venues, the 5411 Empanadas team recommends staying in one location once installed so customers can find their food truck reliable.

10. Market your food truck

Please mark your truck so it’s easy to say both your business name and your service name. Consider the possibility of stickers and napkins with your logo to make your customers aware and consolidate the identity of your Food Truck or food truck …