St. Paul has at least one farmer's market every day of the week at various locations in the city, and their flagship market in downtown St. Paul on Saturday and Sunday.
Most other cities in the Twin Cities metro area have their own farmer's market.
Minnesota farmer's markets sell locally grown Minnesota and Wisconsin produce, fruit, flowers, herbs, cheese, eggs, meat, deli items, honey, bread and baked goods.
All co-ops are open to everyone, it's not necessary to be a member to shop at any of the 12 co-ops in the Twin Cities.
Co-ops are known for their support of local farmers and producers, particularly those with ethical or organic farming practices. To maintain a full range of products, co-ops sell items sourced from around the world, but for a product that can be made in Minnesota, a co-op will likely have the Minnesota version.
Minnesota CoffeeUh, Minnesota coffee? No, we don't grow it here, but we do roast it. Many local coffee companies source ethically grown beans, follow fair trade practices, and have regard for the wellbeing of the coffee farmers.
Minneapolis' most well known coffee company is Peace Coffee, whose organic coffee and coffee beans are widely available in local coffee shops and markets.
CityKid Java roasts coffee beans in Minneapolis, and give 100% of their profits from their organic, fair trade coffee to programs that help at-risk kids in Minnesota.
Coffee and Tea, Ltd. is a family-owned business roasting coffee from over 60 countries in their tiny store in Minneapolis' Linden Hills. They have the widest range of organic and fair trade beans in Minneapolis.
And, Minnesota maple syrup is for sale year-round at co-ops and specialty food stores.
Izzy's Ice Cream is the Twin Cities's best known, available at Izzy's St. Paul store, and local markets and co-ops. The Pumphouse Creamery in Minneapolis loves to use local ingredients, organic milk and cream, and creates seasonal flavors using whichever berry is in season.
More restaurants using local Minnesota produce and ingredients...
Foraging for Food in Minnesota - Morels Mushrooms and MoreThe woods of Minnesota are full of edible plants, berries and mushrooms - if you know what to look for, and where to look. Wild blueberries and morel mushrooms are the most well known, but there are over 200 species of edible plants growing wild in Minnesota. Knowing exactly what is safe to eat is critical, beginners should always go harvesting with an expert in identifying edible wild plants.
The Minnesota Mycological Society holds identification workshops during the mushroom growing season, open to anyone who joins the MMS for $20.
Wisconsin-based Sam Thayer, author of the popular book Forager's Harvest runs wild food classes and workshops in Minnesota and Wisconsin in the summer months.
Pick-Your-Own Local Minnesota FoodsLocal Minnesota apples are wonderful and several pick-your-own apple farms are open from late September until early in the new year. The same farms usually grow pumpkins for Halloween since the seasons neatly coincide.
Berry farms are also popular in summer. Strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries all grow happily in Minnesota and many local berry farms love to have you and your family come and pick them.
Not edible, but Minnesota grown none the less: cut-your-own Christmas tree farms around the Twin Cities let you decorate for the holidays with a locally grown tree.
The Jucy Lucy. Or Juicy Lucy.No list of local Minneapolis food would be complete without the Jucy Lucy, or Juicy Lucy, the inside-out cheese burger of south Minneapolis. Invented sometime in the 1950s by either Matt's Bar or the 5-8 Club, both claim the honor, it's a burger with the ground beef formed around the cheese before cooking. Matt's Bar has the Jucy Lucy, the 5-8 Club serves the Juicy Lucy.
The process results in the cheese attaining lava-like temperature and if you tuck in too soon, the molten cheese squirts out when eaten. The risk of scalding your mouth or face presumably adds to the flavor.
The unofficial burger of Minneapolis makes great bar food, and many bars and burger restaurants serve their own version of the Ju(i)cy Lucy. Or, you can make your own.