By Carissa Chesanek
Farmers markets are primarily the place to get locally-sourced ingredients. And as we become more conscious about what we eat, more and more farmers markets are popping up in Miami. Local and sustainable food is not just something we see in many restaurants today, but also something widely seen in our own kitchens at home.
If you’re interested in finding local, organic goods in your area, or while you’re here visiting Miami, here are a few of the top farmers markets to try.
Lincoln Road Farmers Market: Between Washington and Meridian Avenues, 400 – 700 Blocks of Lincoln Road
When: Open year-round on Sundays, from 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Tourists and locals alike enjoy strolling Lincoln Road’s busy outdoor pedestrian mall, and stopping at this popular farmers market with local vendors offering fruits, veggies, fresh plants, honey and jams. This market is open year-round so you’ll never have to worry about missing out on trying those freshly-made fruit smoothies everyone talks about.
Insider Tip: Vendors line up along the Lincoln Road pedestrian mall between Washington and Meridian Avenues, but the organic produce is found in front of Lincoln Theatre (at Pennsylvania Avenue and Lincoln Road).
Parking: Opt for trying one of the large public or private parking lots and garages off 17th Street (between Alton Road and Washington Avenue) that usually have plenty of space.
Mary Brickell Village Farmers Market: 901 South Miami Avenue
When: Open year-round on Sundays, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Set within the busy surroundings of Mary Brickell Village, this popular location with lots of foot traffic holds vendors that feature weekly-changing goods rather than local produce. Local artisanal jewelry highlights the show, with unique items for both people and pets.
Insider Tip: While there might not always be a huge selection of food to sample here, there are topnotch eateries like Perricone’s Marketplace & Cafe just steps away for when you get hungry.
Parking: There is metered parking along South Miami Avenue and the surrounding streets.
Coconut Grove’s Farmers Market: 3300 Grand Avenue and Margaret Street
When: Open year-round on Saturdays, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
For nearly two decades, the Coconut Grove’s Farmers Market has been a staple to shop for fresh fruits, veggies, spices and herbs, and continues to wow its shoppers today.
There’s a section devoted to raw vegan desserts with ice “creams” made from cashew and coconut milks, along with other must-try food stands that offer items like Nori wraps, tiramisu or strawberry shortcake. You’ll also be able to find local homemade breads, organic homemade creams and Jamaican raw food.
Insider Tip: The hours at this market are more flexible, opening later and closing later than many others within the Miami area.
Parking: The market has its own small parking lot but if it’s full, there are plenty of side streets nearby with ample parking.
Coral Gables Farmers Market: 405 Biltmore Way (in front of City Hall)
When: Open mid-January through March on Saturdays, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Walk along the lushly landscaped, tree-lined streets at this market and you’ll feel right at home. Locally-grown fruits and vegetables are key players here, but there’s also fresh coffee, baked goods and an herb stand with authentic spices and mixes to choose from.
Adults and kids alike can take part in a variety of activities offered throughout the day, including cooking demos from local chefs, gardening workshops from top green thumbs and free Tai Chi classes from the pros.
Insider Tip: While you’ll need to slather the sunscreen and sport sunglasses, you can enjoy plenty of shade found adjacent to the festivities, which makes for a great picnic spot.
Parking: There’s parking surrounding the market but remember to bring quarters; Coral Gables still has coin meters along Andalusia Ave.
South Miami Farmers Market: 6130 Sunset Drive, in front of South Miami City Hall
When: Open year-round on Saturdays, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
This newbie to hit the farmers market scene promotes a community-focused environment that is focused on a healthy lifestyle by offering some of the best local produce.
Don’t let the small size fool you, this market has everything you need including Florida fruits, veggies, eggs, and grass-fed beef. Sample spicy jams, and fresh salsas while checking out cooking demos and informative lectures about South Florida’s edible plants.
Insider Tip: This market currently only accepts cash.
Parking: Parking is free and easy, right by City Hall and South Miami Library.
Pinecrest Garden Green Market: 11000 Red Road
When: Open year round on Sundays, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Located in the former Parrot Jungle property, this farmers market location is perfectly situated under large, shady banyan trees and is known for offering a mix of organic growers and producers selling fresh, local agricultural goods.
Enjoy sampling items like homemade guacamole, exotic fruit, olive oil and artisan breads. And if you’re really hungry, head to the food stands offering crepes, conch fritters and ribs. But you don’t have to be hungry to shop here, as there are other non-food items to enjoy too, such as organic shea butter, Tibetan teas, medicinal herbs and traditional remedy books.
Insider Tip: There’s plenty to see and lots of people ready to see it, so be sure to arrive early to beat the crowds and bring cash as many of the stands don’t take credit cards.
Parking: You’re best bet is the Pinecrest Gardens parking lot but if it’s full, you can always park along the walls leading up to the lot's entrance.
Aventura Mall Farmers Market: 19501 Biscayne Boulevard
When: Open mid-February through October, two weekends a month.
Unlike most of the other outdoor markets, this one is set up indoors at the always-busy Aventura Mall. You’ll find a vast selection of vendors set up by the fountain at Center Court selling a nice selection of local products.
The market is small, but you’ll always find a diverse selection of vendors selling food and crafts like freshly cut flowers, tropical plants, baked goods, fresh guacamole, cooking oils and potpourri.
Insider Tip: You won’t find a lot of tropical produce or food made on the spot here, but you’ll enjoy already prepared delights and high-quality crafts.
Parking: There’s plenty of space in the mall’s garage.
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