Chicago's Downtown Indoor Farmstand

March 3, 2009 10:27:10 AM PST
If the gloomy winter has gotten you down, you can get a taste of summertime favorite: the farmer stand. You don't have to wait any longer for seasonal fruits and vegetables and other products from local farms. The City of Chicago has brought its popular farmers' market indoors for the winter and spring. Chicago's Downtown Farmstand is located at 66 East Randolph Street. The Farmstand offers edible local products, all produced within 250 miles of Chicago, including fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs in season; a full range of condiments, preserves, seasonings and other dry goods items; baked goods and other seasonal items as available. In addition to selling individual items, the Farmstand serves as a hub for the local food industry, offering educational programs and activities, including classes, discussions and seminars, designed to foster interaction between local growers/producers and Chicago residents and visitors. On Wednesdays and Fridays, lunchtime demonstrations highlight what is newest and freshest that day.

Chicago's Downtown Farmstand is administered by the city's Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with Chicago's existing local and sustainable food communities.

"In today's world, sustainable agriculture and eating locally play a key role in making good choices about what we eat." said Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs Commissioner Lois Weisberg. "The Farmstand fills a need for fresh, easily accessible, sustainable food for both residents and visitors."

The Farmstand is conveniently located within close proximity of public transportation, just a half block away from the CTA's Randolph/Wabash stop and the Metra's Millennium Station, as well as within easy walking distance from downtown offices and residences. As an additional, convenient service to downtown workers and commuters, the Farmstand will offer pre-packaged, kitchen-ready bundles of produce and spices that can be easily made into soups, salads, and other meals at home.

The operating hours are from 11am - 7pm Tuesday through Friday, and 11am - 4pm on Saturday. For more information about Chicago's Downtown Farmstand, visit

You can bring the farm stand home by making this Low Mileage Meal, featuring local ingredients found at Chicago's Downtown Farmstand. This dish is great for breakfast, brunch or a light supper.

Serves 2

Want to entertain at home, but not break the bank? Want to entertain, but don't want to do a lot of work? How about inviting everyone over for brunch, and - letting them cook for themselves. Set up an omelet station with all local ingredients and let the fun begin! Omelets are also perfect for a quick weekend lunch or weekday supper - this one uses all local ingredients, available at Chicago's Downtown Farmstand, so it's low-mileage, too!