Several lines of evidence suggest that lipid rafts are involved in cellular fatty acid uptake and influence fatty acid translocase (FAT/CD36) function. However, it remains unknown whether caveolae, a specialized raft type, are required for this mechanism. Here, we show that wild-type (WT) mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) and caveolin-1 knockout (KO) MEFs, which are devoid of caveolae, have comparable overall expression of FAT/CD36 protein but altered subcellular FAT/CD36 localization and function. In WT MEFs, FAT/CD36 was isolated with both lipid raft enriched detergent-resistant membranes (DRMs) and detergent-soluble membranes (DSMs), whereas in cav-1 KO cells it was exclusively associated with DSMs. Subcellular fractionation demonstrated that FAT/CD36 in WT MEFs was localized intracellularly and at the plasma membrane level while in cav-1 KO MEFs it was absent from the plasma membrane. This mistargeting of FAT/CD36 in cav-1 KO cells resulted in reduced fatty acid uptake compared to WT controls. Adenoviral expression of caveolin-1 in KO MEFs induced caveolae formation, redirection of FAT/CD36 to the plasma membrane and rescue of fatty acid uptake. In conclusion, our data provide evidence that caveolin-1 is necessary to target FAT/CD36 to the plasma membrane. Caveolin-1 may influence fatty acid uptake by regulating surface availability of FAT/CD36.