Top 6 global grocery stores/restaurants in the Twin Cities


Grab a bite to eat while fueling your daily, weekly, or monthly grocery shopping trip. Along the way, discover new food treasures to enliven your breakfast, lunch, or dinner menus.

For many, grocery stores are the least favorite thing to do, so we relegate our grocery shopping to specific times of the week or weekend, early or late night shopping, or avoid it and just hail BiteSquad, Amazon Restaurants, or UberEats.

I happen to think a more curious, adventure-seeking, and investigative approach can do much to a grocery store visit. And, if you want to support long-held family, immigrant, or out-of-the-norm experiences, you need to distribute your grocery money across these food-selling treasures.

And, as we have likely all experienced, it’s not a good idea for your pocketbook to grocery shop on an empty stomach. This six pack of grocery-restaurants will guarantee a globally flavored, eye-opening experience.

United Noodles

On a recent trip to United Noodles, my 7-year old picked out an unusual treasure and thanks to Google, we quickly checked it out, purchased a few and were pleasantly surprised on how easy it was to prepare, how delicious it was, and best of all how it added depth to our daily food experience.

What was it? A Rambutan. Google it and look for it the next time you visit United Noodles for one of their savory bowls of ramen at the Unideli.

While you’re there, don’t forget to stop by Coastal Seafoods for beautiful fish and sometime live sea creature entertainment.

Sikora’s Polish Market and Deli

A small market with a big reach, Sikora’s offers Polish food in-store, online, and for order and shipment to help maintain connection to Polish heritage. On our last visit, my husband was able to eat a paczki, grab some pierogi, and juniper berry sausage which made an easy and globally-focused dinner.

And, there are loads of canned and frozen goods to browse and purchase as an added food experiment.

Midtown Global Market

Live entertainment, a menagerie of restaurants, grocery, and a salty tart sound appealing? If you have one stop to make, you’ll have plenty of snack or meal options plus the ability to do your weekly grocery AND gift shopping.

There’s so much to discover here, including food, drinks, hair braiding, jewelry, classes, entertainment, and the ability to be transported all around the world in a single stop.

Karmel Mall

Another all-in-one stop is the Karmel Mall, just down the road on Lake Street from Midtown Global Market. With the largest Somali population in the country, this spot has clothing, food, and other items that are Somali or east African specific.

With nearly 200 shops, it has nearly everything to offer on four floors including henna, clothing, and of course a variety and depth of east African food.

Cecils Delicatessen, Bakery & Restaurant

Since 1949, this Highland Park treasure never disappoints in the restaurant or deli who brings in the best quality meats from Chicago. As the in-house baker of their own breads and rolls, the scratch-made items makes Cecils a necessity for a snack or meal before hunting for unique grocery and bakery finds.

Hmongtown Marketplace

With a vibrant Hmong community, the Hmongtown Marketplace is both an indoor and outdoor market where you can find fruits, vegetables, meats, and dining. Beginning in 2004 at their current location, the market used to be a lumber yard and now 200+ vendors sell their goods all year and is undergoing an expansion.

Read next: St. Paul’s 50 Best Restaurants (The ultimate list)

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Sarah Steil is a Minnesotan by way of Denver, CO and hails from the metropolis of Algona, IA (once home to the world’s largest Cheeto). Sarah puts her visual and communication nose to the design and brand grindstone each day as founder of a local brand and design agency.