A new food truck is hitting the streets of Columbus, serving up fast fare not often seen in mobile eateries. The Little Kitchen’s plant-based menu offers vegan eats in a convenient and quick manner.
Operator Chloe Graffeo’s interest in food piqued in college. She was originally studying creative writing, but had always loved cooking. That love grew into going vegan and studying healthy eating and the local food movement and how it affects the economy and individuals’ health.
“I knew I wanted to do something with that,” Graffeo says. “Preferably my own business.”
Graffeo landed on a food truck for, “the versatility of it.”
Graffeo wants to be able to go to her customers in a truck versus wait for them to come to her with a brick-and-mortar location.
“You can choose your events,” she adds. The truck also allows her to explore more ground and seek out new clientele.
The Little Kitchen Truck made its debut just over a month ago at the Country Living Fair. Graffeo says they are still working on a set rotation, but have done a number of private events and are establishing some regular hours every Friday in front of Virtue Salon in Clintonville.
Graffeo doesn’t plan to let winter slow down the sometimes seasonal food truck business, either. A “Lettuce Cook For You” menu is in the works. Graffeo envisions parking the Little Kitchen in different parts of town each night of the week and offering order-ahead meals that diners can scoop up on their way home from work.
Although it’s vegan, many of the dishes on Little Kitchen’s menu will feel familiar to diners.
“I try and take kind of everyday comfort food and make them vegan,” Graffeo says.
In addition to a menu of smoothies and smoothie bowls, Little Kitchen puts its spin on comfort food favorites like a fiesta salad with soy chorizo, soups, nachos and quinoa bowls with veggies.
“I really try and use whatever veggies are in season,” Graffeo says. She finds in-season veggies cost less, taste better and are easier to find.
There are treats, too, like cookie dough bites and baked cinnamon sugar doughnuts.
The Little Kitchen’s menu has been getting an even better reception that Graffeo expected. She finds diners are thankful for a healthier option where there typically aren’t many. As more and more people become interested in healthy eating, Graffeo hopes that the truck not only reaches people who are plant-based eaters already, but new customers to show them it’s more than tofu and green smoothies.
She says her first entrepreneurial venture has been a ton of work, but, “It’s been very rewarding.” Graffeo plans to keep growing the business for a few years and then possibly hit the road, taking the truck to other cities.
For more information, visit thelittlekitchentruck.com.
Photos provided by The Little Kitchen.