10 Essential Stores and Restaurants in Minneapolis for College Students

By Madison Olejnicak
August 2, 2022

With the fall semester on the horizon, it’s time to get familiar with the many perks Minneapolis has to offer outside North Central’s campus. Whether you’re moving to Minneapolis for the first time, or you’re coming from Minnesota suburbs to the city–here are 10 top restaurants and shops you need to know about! 

Restaurants and shops highlighted in green are within 15 minute walking distance from North Central’s campus. Others that are highlighted in blue are within 10-15 minute driving distance. 



  1. Keys Cafe and Bakery: An American cafe specializing in unique breakfast options and mouthwatering desserts. (GF, Vegan, Vegetarian) 
  3. Hen House Eatery: An American breakfast cafe with classic diner food, delicious breakfast choices, and savory lunch options. (GF, Vegan, Vegetarian) 
  5. Pizza Luce: An authenic italian restaurant specializing in pizza. (GF, Vegan, Vegetarian) 
  7. Hola Arepa: Traditional Latin and Venezuelan dishes including arepas (Cornmeal griddle cake sandwiches) and Yuca fries. (All menu items are Gluten Free unless otherwise noted)
  9. Quang Restaurant: An Asian restaurant specializing in traditional Vietnamese dishes. (GF, Vegan, Vegetarian) 

Grocery stores: 

  1. Trader Joes: A health foods store within a 10 minute walking distance from North Central’s campus. Trader Joes offers incredibly fresh vegetables and fruits and specializes in Gluten free, vegetarian and vegan options. 
  3. Downtown Target: A staple for any college student, Target offers everything from food to pharmacy to dorm essentials. Target validates parking in the ramp below the store, but you have to be sure to watch the time. (Parking validation expires roughly an hour or so after you shop).
  5. Whole Foods: Similar to Trader Joes, this store offers many health food options as well as natural self care and naturopathic medicinal care. 
  7. Hyvee: A 15 minute drive to Robbindale will get you to Hyvee, a shop similar to Target. 
  9. Mill Cities Farmer’s Market: In session Saturdays from May-October, this is a good resource for college students looking to support local farmers while enjoying fresh food and produce. Many vendors at this location specialize in making or growing healthy foods with dietary options available. 


Check out what off-campus life has to offer!