While the sun-kissed days of summer may be behind us, many of Seattle’s farmers markets are still in full swing, and are bursting with beautiful fall produce and all sorts of other treasures. I took the liberty of visiting these markets one-by-one to check out the goods, and here’s what I found.

University District Farmers Market

Farmers Markets1

Location: University Way NE (the “Ave”) between 50th & 52nd
Hours: Saturdays 9-2
What stood out: Appel Farms, a family-run dairy farm in Ferndale, Washington, had an impressive lineup of tasty handmade cheeses, with flavors ranging from jalapeño gouda to Greek olive feta to bacon cheddar!
Tip: This is a sizable market with tons and tons of beautiful produce. Take a lap before deciding which booth to buy from! Also, if you’re planning on stopping for lunch (or even if you’re not), stop for a naan at Tandoozy. Just trust me on this one.

Capitol Hill Broadway Farmers Market

Farmers Markets2

Location: Broadway Ave E & E Pine St
Hours: Sundays 11-3
What stood out: As a Cap Hill resident and regular market-goer, it’s hard to play favorites with this one, but I will say that the Malus Ginger Beer I tasted for the first time last week was phenomenal, and the folks serving it were just as lovely. Steel Wheel Farm and El Chito (delicious tamales) are other favorites.
Tip: If you’re there on a nice day, pick up picnic makings (fresh fruit, bread, cheese…even wine and smoked salmon can be found!) and walk a block east to Cal Anderson park to enjoy your goodies!

West Seattle Farmers Market

Farmers Markets3

Location: California Ave SW & SW Alaska, in the heart of the West Seattle Junction
Hours: Sundays 10-2
What stood out: Growing Washington has a great selection of produce. I also know several folks who are part of their Food Box delivery program and love it. For prepared food, I highly recommend trying a toasty empanada at Pampeana. I went for the Spinach & Cheese variety and it was dreamy.
Tip: This is a fairly small market; if you have time to kill after making your way through the vendor booths, take a stroll along California Avenue. Pop into Pegasus Book Exchange, grab a pastry at Bakery Nouveau, or browse vinyl at Easy Street Records.

Ballard Farmers Market

Farmers Markets4

Location: Ballard Avenue NW, between Vernon Place NW and 22nd Avenue NW
Hours: Sundays 10-3
What stood out: It was fascinating talking with the folks at Farmbox Greens, who have taken on the complex challenge of vertical urban farming. Their gorgeous microgreens are delicate and delicious, and there is much to learn from the knowledgable owner!
Tip: While you’re in Ballard, take a tour of the many breweries nearby. NW Peaks Brewery, Lucky Envelope Brewing, and Stoup Brewing are all worth a visit.

Bonus: Vashon Island Farmers Market

Farmers Markets5

Although this market is a ferry ride away from the city, I’d highly recommend stopping by if you’re ever on the island, or are looking for a fun day trip. Also note that this market stops running between December and April.
Location: 17519 Vashon Highway SW
Hours: Saturdays 10-2 (April through December) plus Wednesdays 3-6 (June-September)
What stood out: Perhaps my favorite sample of the day (and there were many) was provided by Seattle Canning Co. Their Tomato Relish and Spicy Eggplant Kasundi (chutney) are both to die for.
Tip: Bring the little ones! This is a super kid-friendly market, with face painting, live music, and plenty of space to spread a blanket out on the grass!

As you can see, Seattle’s farmers market scene is still bustling, even with the weather turning colder. Enjoy exploring the bounty our beautiful region has to offer, and take the time to meet the people behind the magic! The farmers, cooks, craftsmen, and business owners behind the booths LOVE sharing their story!

Look out for next week’s post, and until then, happy cooking!