Mononuclear phagocytes (MPs) including monocytes, macrophages and dendritic cells (DCs) are critical innate immune effectors and initiators of the adaptive immune response. MPs are present in the alveolar airspace at steady state, however little is known about DC recruitment in acute pulmonary inflammation. Here we use lipopolysaccharide inhalation to induce acute inflammation in healthy volunteers and examine the impact on bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and blood MP repertoire. Classical monocytes and two DC subsets (DC2/3 and DC5) are expanded in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid 8 h after lipopolysaccharide inhalation. Surface phenotyping, gene expression profiling and parallel analysis of blood indicate recruited DCs are blood-derived. Recruited monocytes and DCs rapidly adopt typical airspace-resident MP gene expression profiles. Following lipopolysaccharide inhalation, alveolar macrophages strongly up-regulate cytokines for MP recruitment. Our study defines the characteristics of human DCs and monocytes recruited into bronchoalveolar space immediately following localised acute inflammatory stimulus in vivo.