Majestic coastlines, luscious greenery, beautiful mountains, and friendly people are a few things Oregon’s known for. However, thanks to rain and great climate, Oregon boasts nearly 100 farmer’s markets state-wide, offering seasonal and year-round produce for everyone to enjoy. This is one of the main reasons why the Farm to Table movement has woven perfectly into the fabric of Oregon’s culture! Today, we’ll talk about a few of my favorite farmer’s markets in Portland that I frequent to get local fruits and vegetables, honey, meats and delicious eats!
Here goes – Portland Farmer’s Markets for both sides of both rivers!
PSU – Portland State University
Nothing says “winter is over” like the farmer’s markets opening back up, but luckily for Portlanders, PSU Farmers Market is open year-round! Known as the “crown jewel” of farmer’s markets, it stretches as long as four blocks and offers as many as 100 vendors who showcase locally grown goods for shoppers. On a beautiful summer day in Portland, PSU has seen up to 12,000 visitors and shoppers ranging from locals to chefs, and tourists.
If you ask any foodie in Portland where to get the freshest produce, they will all say “the PSU market is the best farmer’s market in Portland!”
Saturday mornings are bustling with happy shoppers, ready to enjoy their morning walk around PSU’s market with no worries in the world other than deciding which vendor to grab a tasty treat from. As you walk along what seems like a never-ending row of vendor canopies, sweet, full-bodied aromas of succulent peaches and berries fill your nostrils. Beautifully arranged bunches of black, green, and red grapes lay in front of you as you feast your eyes on how plump and delectable they look. Across from you is a vendor selling succulent figs that would pair incredibly well with your morning breakfasts at home. Oh, the decisions!
The vegetable stands do not disappoint, either. Bunches of kale, abundant in shades of dark green and purple make you crave a fresh, crisp kale salad. Rainbow carrots, tomatoes, and twelve different kinds of mushrooms to choose from! The possibilities for your salads and grills are limitless as you grab a little of each vegetable.
Wait, what is that smell? Vendors at PSU not only offer local produce but fully prepared foods to enjoy or take home. You can choose from Taiwanese cuisine to flavorful tamales to a classic wood-fired pizza for breakfast or lunch.
Oh, and let us not mention Mio’s Delectables pastries and treats! These artisanal goodies are hand-crafted to perfection. Summertime brings a large crowd, and these vendors sell out pretty quickly so if you’re planning on getting your hands on a few of these items, make sure you show up early.
Hollywood Farmer’s Market is a great place to venture if you embrace a more compact market and you are on the east side on a Saturday morning. It doesn’t lack the quality of local produce, that’s for sure! Options such as purple asparagus and nettle tops are still available, but perhaps one or two vendors sell those, compared to six to eight, at larger farmer’s markets.
They offer live music which provides a fun and upbeat environment for shoppers and your little fur babies are welcome to accompany you as you shop after 10 am!
Montavilla’s unique name comes from its’ full name “Mountain Tabor Village” and one of the wonderful things about it is that they are open on Sunday! This is incredibly convenient for me when I haven’t had a chance to take advantage of visiting the Saturday markets. With up to 40 vendors in their lot, Montavilla Farmers Market offers plenty of colorful fruit and vegetables to choose from. I am a huge fan of Tabor’s Bread and always grab a loaf of einkorn bread when I am there.
If you’re in for some outdoor exercise, make your way up the steps to Mt. Tabor for a scenic view! Montavilla offers a small community feel which is comforting and very welcoming. Stop by Coquine’s market, which is open until 2:30 pm (and maybe make reservations for a special dinner there). A half day in Montavilla woven together with farmer’s markets in Portland – well you’re in for a delightful visit!
When I am taking a bike ride on the bridge loop, this is one of my pits stops to grab local produce. The great benefit of this farmer’s market is that they’re open on Thursday which makes it ideal for many to grab the fresh produce they need throughout the week without having to wait for the weekend. The loop from Steel Bridge to the Sellwood Bridge conveniently leads me down Moody Ave to the South Waterfront Farmers Market.
Freshest fruits ranging from sweet berries to colorful vegetables are widely available for plenty to buy. I’ve also seen booths that offer salmon CSA and an ice cream truck from Portland’s beloved Fifty Licks! What better way to end your shopping trip at the market than enjoying some artisnal ice cream on a summer day?
If you’re in the mood for a picnic, stroll, or lay down for some soaking up the sunshine, come visit Elizabeth Caruthers Park (behind the farmers market) which has a bocce and splash pad for families to enjoy some outdoor fun.
This market is not in Portland’s radius, so technically is cannot be considered amongst the best farmer’s markets in Portland, but deserves some credit for its quality and size. The Vancouver Farmers Market open on Saturdays from March through October and is located in downtown Vancouver, which is located in Washington State. Just across the Columbia River, it definitely is a stone’s throw away from Portland, although it has adapted a unique and appreciated identity.
Not to mention, this is a great location for history buffs to enjoy old buildings with nearby waterfront scenery!
The vendors are always equipped with the best fruits and vegetables, ethically raised meat, freshly baked breads and pastries. Other vendors also provide uniquely hand-crafted ceramics and locally-made condiments that are sure to catch your attention. This helps out local businesses and we’re all for it!
As you can see, Portland offers a wide variety of options for your convenience, preference, location, and enjoyment. This wonderful city takes pride in being able to grow, harvest, and sell the best produce around. After you’ve had the good stuff, everything else feels like second quality!
Come visit one or all of these markets and experience them for yourself. It’s a great way to enjoy some sunshine, get exercise, and be part of a continuously supportive community!
We at Portland by Mouth love to recommend farmers markets in Portland, so just ask your guide which one is their fave!