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Food Truck Business Plan (How to Write One & Example)


Starting a food truck business is a great option if you’re looking to start a food business, as it costs less than opening regular brick and mortar restaurants, and the mobile food business is very popular worldwide.

However, most food truck owners aren’t prepared for the additional costs that are required to start their business. Therefore, knowing the risks before getting into the food industry is important.

In this guide, we will explain why it is important to have a food truck business plan, how to write a food truck business plan, what you can do to stay afloat in the food truck market, and we will provide you with an example of a business plan.

What is a food truck business plan?

A food truck business plan is a written guide that outlines the intended actions, objectives, and tactics for a food truck. It is a crucial document for individuals who want to make their food truck dreams come true. Starting a local food truck business is an excellent way to enter the restaurant industry. Most food trucks cost less to operate than the average brick and mortar restaurant, require fewer employees, operational charges, and you can change locations.

Starting a food truck business plan is essential for creating a successful business

For more information, check out our restaurant business plan guide, which will help you start creating your own business plan.

The importance of a well-structured food truck business plan

If you own, invest in, or manage a food truck, you need to write a food truck business plan in order to help you turn your love for making delicious meals into a profitable mobile business. All successful food trucks have detailed business plans, which is crucial if you need to find a source of business financing.

With a detailed business plan, you can present your ideas for development to potential investors. If you don’t have your own savings, you will need to create a financial plan. Here you can check our guide about how to open a restaurant with no money.

A ready business plan is necessary to start any negotiations with a potential investor or lender. Thanks to it, you will be prepared for questions about the development of your food truck, potential customers, competition, or short- and long-term budget.


Before creating your food truck business plan, check the list of 40+ important questions in our guide on how to write a restaurant business plan.

Once you find out the answers to the questions that require your consideration, you can start creating your food truck business plan template to start a profitable business.

How to write a business plan for a food truck company?

  • Step 1. Before writing your business plan, gather important information by answering the 40+ important questions we mentioned above 
  • Step 2. If your restaurant has an innovative restaurant business model, it’s better to wait and verify its potential for success before writing a business plan. Use the Business Model Canvas for this purpose. Find out more about Business Model Canvas.
  • Step 3. For a restaurant with a traditional business model, you can skip Step 2 and create a business plan immediately using a business plan template.
  • Step 4. Review and update your business plans regularly in the first few months and at least once a year after that, as it is a dynamic document that helps your restaurant grow.

Remember to cover the key elements of a successful food truck business plan, which we described below. 

Executive summary

What is an executive summary for a food truck? It is the beginning of your food truck business plan, a brief overview of your food truck concept. The executive summary:

  • Provides a reader with information on the critical aspects of your business plan, including a summary of the budget, the business’s purpose and values, and a clear idea of your product and brand. 
  • Is short (usually around 1-2 pages or 600 words).
What should I cover in an Executive summary?
  • What food will you serve?
  • Where will you sell your food?
  • Why do you think your food will be popular in the area you’ll be selling it?
  • How much will it cost to open your food truck, and how much do you expect to make?
  • What are your goals for your food truck business in the future?

Restaurant description 

Provide detailed information about your company in this part of your food truck business plan. Describe your food truck business and explain how it will benefit the existing market. This section allows you to elaborate on the topics you introduced in the executive summary for restaurant.

What aspects could I cover in the Restaurant description?
  • Why did you choose a food truck instead of a physical restaurant location?
  • Where do you plan to park your food truck?
  • What type of food truck will you use (truck, trailer, or food cart)?
  • Will you prepare your food inside the truck or at a commissary kitchen?
  • What is your production capacity?
  • How will your food items compete with the menu items of other food trucks or restaurants in your target area?
  • Which specific group of customers will you serve?
  • What will be your hiring and labor practices?
  • What is your competitive advantage?
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Market Analysis

While writing a food truck business plan, provide the market analysis. The most critical factors you must cover are:

  • Target market – if you plan on selling burgers, analyze if there is a need for this type of food.
  • Location – this factor is strictly connected with your food truck target market. For example, if you sell burgers and find a location with a demand for them, the university could be a good one.
  • Competition – are there many food trucks or restaurants in your location? If yes, what kind of food do they sell, and who is their target customer? Find your niche and serve your customers according to their needs.
What should I consider in my market analysis?
  • Think about the current and seasonal trends and your target customer needs 
  • Once you choose your target customers, describe them by providing demographic information (for example, age, geographic area, and income level).
  • Define the size and growth potential of your target market and explain how you can get a market share
  • Don’t forget about the competition. Analyze them and consider how to differentiate your business from the competitive ones.

Sample Menu

In this section, describe your food truck menu items. Since food trucks are often associated with fast, reliable meals, the menu, and food and beverage options, you provide are crucial to your brand and business strategy.

What should I consider when creating my sample menu?
  • What kind of food will you serve?
  • Why will customers choose to eat your food?
  • Why are you enthusiastic about this type of food?
  • Do you already have ready recipes, or will you work on creating them?
  • What is your unique selling point?

Marketing and Publicity

Traditional restaurants have one permanent location, but food trucks change location more often. They can have one chosen location but, at the same time, change it by attending different street food events. That’s why a marketing strategy becomes more challenging in the food truck business and must be described in a business plan.

What should be covered in a marketing strategy for a food truck business?
  • Plan to use social media to inform your loyal customers of your location and create a consistent food truck branding strategy to promote your business to new customers.
  • Remember that customers appreciate uniqueness, whether a distinct food truck design or an innovative selling point for your food truck.
  • Brainstorm a list of activities to reach potential customers online and offline.
  • Build a website for your food truck. For that purpose, you can use a restaurant website builder with ready made restaurant website templates.
  • Consider creating your own branded mobile app for your restaurant.
  • Consider using a food ordering system in your food truck.
  • Design your online menu using digital menu templates, which help to make your menu stand out and make it easy for customers to access online.

Create a consistent brand for your food truck business

Designing a consistent brand for your food truck business is an enjoyable aspect of creating a business plan. Remember to include example logos, vehicle wraps ideas, branded menus, posts, food truck slogans, or food truck name ideas if you’re just starting off. Also, consistently incorporate your brand throughout any presentations or documents you create for your business plan.

When creating a food truck start-up business plan, make sure your branding is concise

Business Operations

Apart from the information about customer service, sales, inventory tracking, accounting, and supply chain management for the food items on your menu in case of the food truck business plan, you must also address operational issues like:

  • Where can you park the truck 
  • How to reach your customers from that location
  • What will be your operating hours 

Financing and Loans

Whether you plan on buying or renting a food truck, it will still be cheaper than a traditional restaurant.

What is the cheapest investment to start a food truck?

Starting a food truck can cost anywhere from $15,000 to over $200,000, depending on:

  • the type of truck, 
  • cooking equipment, 
  • menu items, 
  • permits and licenses,
  • insurance, 
  • marketing expenses. 

According to a survey by Food Truck Empire, the average startup cost is approximately $89,477.

If you don’t have your own financial resources, you can look for a business loan, crowdfunding, business line of credit, etc. In addition, you can check our 18 ways how to open a restaurant with no money for inspiration.

After creating your food truck financing plan, you must include all the relevant details in your food truck business plan.

Sales Forecasts and Operating Expenses

A break-even analysis is a key part in a new food truck business plan. This analysis covers how much food sales are needed each month to cover the cost of expenses and reach the break-even point.

How to calculate the break even point?

For calculating the financial projections, you can use the following formula: 

Fixed Costs / (Price – Variable Costs) = Break Even Point

Secondly, you need to provide the potential profit and loss statement, which shows what turnover and profits you will generate. Finally, you need to include a cash flow analysis to show investors how you plan to allocate funds for labor, supplies, and operations and to demonstrate that the food truck can be self-sufficient without requiring additional investment.

Team and Management

Whether you will be the only person working in the food truck or are planning a group of employees to hire, remember to write about it in your food truck business plan to evaluate your staffing needs. Consider individuals with the required skills and those you will need to hire or train. Include the cost of necessary training in your restaurant business plan. How to make a food truck business plan starts with settings goals

Example of a food truck business plan

For this sample food truck business plan, we imagined a chef and his wife with several years of experience in the restaurant industry. They want to start their own food truck and sell their products to locals and tourists. The numbers in this plan are estimates and are used to show how the calculations were done. However, they are not exact, and you should not use them to make your own business plan.

1. Executive summary
  • Mission: We’re here to offer our delicious sandwiches, burgers, and snacks made on site and with fresh ingredients.
  • Vision: We want our clients to fall in love with the food that we create
  • Restaurant Description: A food truck that offers delicious American-Italian dishes on the go.
  • Costs: $145,750 investment + $16,400 monthly costs.
  • Profits: after 12 months, $21,500 per month (31.85% of turnover).
2. Description of the restaurant We created Jim’s Food Truck out of our love for food. We want to share our love of great food with local residents and tourists. Since 2017, Jim has worked at some of the best grab-and-go restaurants in New York. Today, Jim’s Food Truck offers burgers, paninis, sandwiches, snacks, and soft drinks.
  • Mission and vision
    • Mission: We’re here to offer our delicious sandwiches, burgers, and snacks made on site and with fresh ingredients.
    • Vision: We want our clients to fall in love with the food that we create
  • Restaurant concept
    • Restaurant name: Jim’s Food Truck
    • Restaurant type: Food truck offering sandwiches, burgers, and snacks made with fresh ingredients
    • Location: 5th Ave S, Naples, Florida
    • Dining: tables on site.
    • Order fulfillment: on-site, personal pick-up + delivery in a 3 km radius. The orders will be made from the food truck’s website via our online ordering system. Additionally, we will work with third-party portals like UberEats to make our brand recognizable and post on our fan page about current offers and promotions.
    • Working hours: 10 am to 8 pm
  • Menu offer
    • Type of cuisine: American, Italian
    • Offer: We aim to minimize food costs and losses by keeping the menu as brief as possible. Our menu will be divided into 3 categories: breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
    • Unique Selling Points:
      • A short menu with 8 menu items
      • High-quality ingredients
      • Order processing speed up to 15 minutes for breakfast and up to 30 minutes for lunch and dinner.
3. Market and competition analysis Market analysis
  • Target group: We will be targeting locals and tourists within 3km of our location.
  • Size of the target group: over 16,000 people over the age of 18 + 200,000 tourists visiting our city monthly.
Competition analysis
  • The size of the competition: The area in which we plan to operate currently has 3 other food trucks, 2 fine dining restaurants, 2 ice cream shops, 1 Italian restaurant. Potential competition could be nearby food trucks, which offer sandwiches, but their selection is limited, and they don’t offer burgers.
  • Competitors’ prices: Competitors’ prices are higher than ours, which gives us the opportunity to attract more customers.
  • Competitors’ offer: other food trucks offer breakfasts similar to ours, but their menus are limited, and they do not offer delivery.
Restaurant SWOT analysis
• Menu items differ from those offered by restaurants and other food businesses
• Experienced chef
• Own website and mobile app with online ordering system
• Limited delivery options – 1 supplier only
• Not recognizable brand
• Limited marketing budget
• The increasing number of tourists visiting the city
• No competition in the selected area with their own online ordering system for restaurants and delivery option
• A low volume of orders indicating poor sales
• Another food truck is interested in starting its operations in the same area
• The increase in energy costs
4. Investment plan (detailed cost analysis) Investment costs (one-off to start):
  • Food truck purchase – $70,000
  • Renovation or styling the food truck – approx. $10,000
  • Kitchen equipment (grill, fryer, refrigerator, etc.) approx. $20,000
  • Food truck devices and equipment, including tables, chairs, etc. – approx. $10,000
  • Kitchen equipment including pans, knives, cutting boards, etc. – approx. $2,000,
  • POS system – approx. $3,000, including cash register, payment terminal, etc.
  • Initial inventory (food and supplies) – approx. $3,000
  • Provision of hygiene and cleaning products – approx. $300.
  • Marketing and advertising costs – approx. $10,000, including logo design, website development, social media advertising, etc.
  • Custom branding – approx. $500.
  • Insurance – approx. $3,000
  • Clothes for employees: 3 aprons, 3 work clothes for the kitchen – approx. $300
  • Scooter (owned by the owner), thermal bag for transporting food = approx. $150
  • Website with an online ordering system: $2,000
  • Licenses and permits: approx. $1,500.
  • TOTAL: $145,750 (one-off)
Operating costs (monthly)
  • Food and supplies – approx. $6,000 / month
  • Utility bills including electricity, gas, water, internet, etc. – approx. $1,500 / month
  • Truck and equipment maintenance – approx. $1,000 / month
  • POS (point of sale) and other software fees – approx. $200 / month
  • Staffing costs – including salaries of cooks, wages, etc. – approx. $4,500 / month
  • Insurance – approx. $200 / month
  • Marketing and advertising costs, including advertising campaign costs, website content creation, etc. – approx. $1,000 / month
  • Accounting and legal fees – approx. $500 / month
  • Repair and maintenance costs – approx. $1,500.
  • TOTAL: $16,400 / month
5. Financial Forecast Profit and Loss Statement We expect that out of the 16,000 people over 18, 1% of them will order from our food truck each day, which means we will have 16 orders per day in the first month. Moreover, around 200,000 tourists visit our city monthly, so we assume they make at least 4 orders per day. In total, we start our financial forecast with 20 orders per day. At the end of the year, we will have 150 orders daily.
Months of business activityMonthly number of ordersAverage order valueIncome (turnover)Variable costs per monthFixed costs per monthProfit per monthProfit margin (in percentage)
1600 (20 daily)
2900 (30 daily)$15
31200 (40 daily)$15
41800 (60 daily)$15
52400 (80 daily)$15
62700 (90 daily)$15
73000 (100 daily)$15
$45,000$28,500$4,000$12,50027.8 %
83300 (110 daily)$15
93600 (120 daily)$15
103900 (130 daily)$15
114200 (140 daily)$15
124500 (150 daily)$15
  • We will reach the break-even point with 1800 orders per month.
  • We assume it will take 12 months to reach the target number of serviced orders. Then we will achieve full profitability.
  • In the first months, the profit will reach $4,100.
  • Ultimately, the profit will reach $21,500 / month.
Sensitivity analysis
ProblemDescription of the problemHow to react
A 10% fall in sales comparing to the financial predictionMonthly revenue: X (+/- X %)

Costs per month: no change

Profit per month: X (+/- X%)
• We do nothing – as these are normal trading fluctuations• There is nothing we can do about it (we treat this as normal fluctuation)
A 50% fall in sales comparing to the financial predictionMonthly revenue: X (+/- X %)

Costs per month: no change

Profit per month: X (+/- X%)
• We put aside a financial cushion for 6 months of activity in advance
• We analyze from which sources sales decreased the most
• We increase the budget for marketing activities based on the analysis of revenue sources
• Developing and promoting the food truck’s brand
• Monitoring the number of online and offline orders and evaluating the impact of marketing activities
• Continuously analyzing customer feedback to improve the food truck’s offerings and service.
Two employees resigned simultaneouslyThe situation is analogous to the downtime of 2 months• We analyze the reasons for leaving
• We put aside a financial cushion for 6 months of activity in advance
• We start recruiting new people
• We agree to close the premises for 1-2 months
• Monthly one-on-one conversations with each employee to collect feedback
• Staff training sessions
• Quarterly joint events for team building and collaboration
• Ongoing monitoring of the working atmosphere to ensure a positive and productive work environment
Sales were impacted by the pandemic, causing a 3-6 month downtimeThis will result in zero revenue and profits.• We put aside a financial cushion for 6 months of activity in advance
• We are not laying off employees. We pay 50% of the salary
• Alternatively, we extend the delivery area to 6 miles thanks to external suppliers such as UberEats or DoorDash
• We conduct monthly analysis of food costs, inventory, and losses
• Monthly cost update
• We can do nothing about it as it’s out of our control.
Energy costs and salaries have gone up by 50%.Monthly revenue: X (+/- X %)

Costs per month: no change

Profit per month: X (+/- X%)
• We put aside a financial cushion for 6 months of activity in advance
• We are not laying off employees. We pay 50% of the salary
• Alternatively, we extend the delivery area to 6 miles thanks to external suppliers such as UberEats or DoorDash
• We conduct monthly analysis of food costs, inventory, and losses
• Monthly cost update
• We can do nothing about it as it’s out of our control.

8. Team


  • 1 employee with a driver’s license to deliver orders
  • 2 people to help in the kitchen and handle orders 
  • 1 chef with 5 years of experience (company owner).

9. Marketing Plan

  • We will start with building brand awareness among our potential customers. On the first day of food truck operations, we will prepare burgers and sandwiches, and we will give them to the people passing by. 
  • At the same time, we will build the restaurant website and start selling online via our own branded mobile app and online ordering system, which will be a part of our website. 
  • We plan to offer promotions, especially during our happy hours. We also want to implement a loyalty program for our food truck’s customers. 
  • If we can’t deliver all orders, we will use a third-party delivery service provider like Uber Eats. However, it is just a temporary solution. We aim to deliver with our own drivers and cut the commission costs.
  • We plan to create a fan page and publish posts regularly informing our customers about current promotions and deals. 

10. Description of the further development possibilities

Here are a few possible development ideas for the food truck:

  • Greater delivery area: with continuous brand awareness and increased sales, we plan to extend our delivery area from a 3 km to a 6 km radius. Depending on the market interest, we will consider extending it even more. 
  • Building a network or franchise of food trucks: if the concept proves to be profitable in our city, we plan to open a second location with the same brand. If we succeed in implementing this project, we will think about creating a franchise of food trucks
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How to effectively present your food truck business plan

To present your food truck business plan template effectively, you need to:

  • start with your business concept description
  • focus on your food truck competitive advantage
  • pay attention to the numbers – your financial projections are of great importance for potential investors
  • try to use graphs and tables to provide detailed information on your food truck business idea

Key Takeaways

  • Starting a food truck business is a cost-effective alternative to opening a traditional restaurant due to the lower startup costs.
  • A food truck business plan example describes your food truck business in detail.
  • Remember to create a food truck business plan on your own, don’t outsource it.
  • A food truck business plan is crucial if you are going to look for an outside source of financing (investors).
  • Don’t forget to include social media communication in your marketing strategy, which is part of a food truck business plan.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

The goal of a food truck business plan can vary depending on the specific goals of the company owner, but in general, here are the reasons why you might want to consider implementing one:

  • Definition of the business concept and the target market: A food truck business plan example helps define the business concept, the type of dishes to be served and the target market the company intends to target. 
  • Identify Competitive and Market Opportunities: A food truck business plan helps to analyze the competitive landscape and identify market opportunities for the company. This analysis should include insights into the target market’s demographics and buying habits, as well as an assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of competing companies. 
  • Developing a Marketing and Sales Strategy: A business plan should include a marketing and sales strategy that outlines how the company intends to attract and retain customers. This may include social media marketing, branding, and promotional strategy.
  • Planning the Operational and Financial Aspects of the Business: It should describe the operational and financial aspects of the business, including the cost of trucks, equipment, and consumables, as well as projected revenue and revenue from flow analysis. 
  • Set Goals and Objectives: A food truck business plan example should include specific, measurable, and achievable goals to drive the company’s growth and success over time. This can include financial goals like sales and profit goals and operational goals like increasing customer satisfaction and expanding the menu.

Writing a marketing plan for a food truck involves several key steps. Here’s a basic overview of how to create a marketing plan for a food truck: 

  • Define your target market: Determine your ideal customer by looking at demographics like age, gender, income, and location.
  • Analyze Your Competitors: Look at other food trucks and restaurants in the area to see what they offer and how they market themselves. Identify gaps in the market that you can fill. 
  • Define your Unique Selling Proposition (USP): Determine what makes your food truck unique and why customers should choose you over your competition.It could be your menu, your prices, your location, or any number of other factors. 
  • Grow your brand: Create a consistent and memorable brand identity that includes your name, logo and visual style. Make sure your branding reflects your USP and appeals to your target market. 
  • Choose your marketing tactics: Determine the marketing tactics you will use to reach your target market, such as social media, local events, flyers, or email marketing. 
  • Set a budget: Determine how much you can spend on marketing and allocate your budget to the most effective tactics.
  • Build a timeline: Create a timeline for your marketing plan, including specific goals and milestones. Monitor your progress and adjust your tactics if necessary. 
  • Measure your success: Determine how you will measure the success of your marketing plan, for example, through customer feedback, social media interactions, or sales data.

Writing a business plan for a food truck involves several key steps. Here’s a basic overview of how to create a food truck business plan: 

  • Summary: This section provides an overview of your food truck business plan and should include your business name, location, and location, mission statement and goals. 
  • Market Analysis: Perform an in-depth analysis of your target market, including customer demographics, purchasing habits, and competition. This will help you identify opportunities and gaps in the market.
  • Menu: details of menu items, prices and ingredients. Make sure the menu is relevant to your target market and is competitive in the market. 
  • Marketing and Sales: Describe your sales and marketing strategies, including branding, social media, and promotions. Explain how you plan to reach your target market and generate revenue. 
  • Operations: Explain how you plan to operate your food truck, including daily routine, staffing, and logistics.
  • Finances: Provides detailed financial projections, including initial costs, revenue projections, and profit margins. This section should also include a break-even analysis, cash flow statements, and a balance sheet. 
  • Funding Request: If you need funding, write a request, including the amount required and how the funds will be used. Explain how you plan to repay the personal loan.
  • Addendum: Include any additional information that supports your business plan, such as market research data, licenses, permits, and insurance.
The profitability of a food truck business can vary widely depending on factors such as location, menu, pricing, competition, and operating costs. However, a food truck business can be profitable if managed and operated efficiently.

According to several industry sources, food truck businesses can generate annual revenue of $50,000 to $250,000 or more, with 10% to 20% profit margins. However, actual sales and profits can vary significantly depending on several factors, including the cost of raw materials, labor, and overhead fees.

The most profitable foods to prepare on a food truck can depend on several factors, including the target market, location, and competition. However, some food products are more popular and profitable than others in the food truck industry. These include gourmet burgers, tacos, BBQ, sandwiches, and deserts.

Juliusz Dzierlatka

Juliusz Dzierlatka

Digital content creator with +7 years experience in marketing, helping restaurants streamline daily operations.

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