As a Des Moines native, I must say...I love this city!  Des Moines has so many great things going on; it is a gem!  I love seeing publications about Des Moines being one of the best cities to work/raise a family in, yet I’m also conflicted because I don’t want too many people to learn about this great city and spoil it!

Being a small business owner/entrepreneur, I love to support other local businesses.  Where you spend your money really shows what you value, so I try to support my local friends!  Supporting local organizations helps to enhance our community exponentially compared to buying from larger organizations/corporations.  Don’t get me wrong, I still love Amazon’s, “Buy with one click” yet I try to be very aware, and intentional, with where I spend my money.

That said, I thought you all might be interested in some of my favorite locally owned spots in Des Moines.  I’m not affiliated with any of these businesses other than I love what they offer Des Moines!  (You can click on each business to get directed to their website).

Food Joints

  • Table 128
    • This is Eric and I's go to date night dinner spot.  Chef Lynn & his wife Sarah are amazing people and I can't say enough good things about them!
  • The Cheese Bar
    • The Cheese Bar is the offshoot of The Cheese Shop.  If you like fine cheeses and excellent beers this is your spot!
  • The Foundry
    • This is a new and unique dining atmosphere for Des Moines where each night new/different food trucks serve food.  This is a great place to bring a family as it's large, loud, and kid friendly.
  • Gusto Pizza Co.
    • This is my go-to pizza spot.  I'm also a huge fan of the Fromage Blue salad.  We tend to go to the Johnston location, but they are conveniently located throughout Des Moines. 
  • La Mie
    • Joe & Christina Logsdon have created a Des Moines gem.  Their french inspired menu features wonderful breads, pastries, desserts as well as healthful breakfast and lunch options.
  • Harbinger
    • Chef Joe is bringing unique small plate cousine to Des Moines.  The small plates menu changes seasonally and are inspired by Chef's world travels.

Coffee Shops

  • Horizon Line
    • I love the atmosphere at Horizon Line.  It has a very clean, modern, and trendy feel.  The coffee is fantastic and they sell sweets from my friends at Brightside Kitchen and The Cutler Kitchen
  • Twisted Bean
    • I live just a mile from their new location, and it is my home away from home.  I'm a big fan of their cappuccinos and also the quiche (it is only available on the weekends).
  • Freedom Blend Coffee
    • This coffee shop has a cozy/cabin atmosphere with a great mission of empowering youth through Christ centered employment training.

Kids Activities

  • The Des Moines Children’s Museum
    • It's been so great seeing this grassroots children's museum bloom and expand.  It is currently located in Valley West Mall and it's a great place for kids to play.  I can't wait to see what the future of the Children's Museum holds!
  • Apex Gym
    • I like to take my boys to Apex on Wednesday mornings for their open play.  For only $5 (per family) my boys get to run around, jump on trampolines, and get rid of A LOT of energy!
  • Des Moines Parent 
    • This organization is an amazing resource for all things kids!  Erin has created such an awesome tool to help parents learn about kids organizations, events, opportunities, etc. in the Des Moines area.
  • Skate North
    • Skate North is in walking distance of our home, and I can only imagine how much my boys will be hanging here as they get older!


  • Farrell’s - Beaverdale
    • The crew at Farrells does such a great job of building community and support for all members.  It's a wonderful place to get your sweat on.
  • dmYOGA
    • I met Drew through Urban Ambassadors and he introduced me to dmYOGA.  I love vibe of the Saturday morning classes and the location is perfect (500 East Locust in East Village)!
  • Capital Chiropractic
    • Chris and his crew are amazing!  They focus on whole body wellness and are centered on preventative health rather than just treatments.  Capital Chiro is very active in making Des Moines a better community.
  • Campbell’s Nutrition
    • I enjoy Campbells for their organic food and also their health/wellness section.  The staff is incredibly knowledgable and can really help with your specific health needs.


  • BackCounty Outfitters
    • Backcounty has a great selection of both men's and women's clothing, shoes, and outdoor gear.  They also do a lot of support the community of Beaverdale!
  • Active Endeavors
    • Active Endeavors is my go to spot for outdoor gear and clothing.  I especially love their winter sales and like to stock up on items for myself and my kids.
  • Raygun
    • Who doesn't love a witty t-shirt?  Their slogan says it all, "The Greatest Store in the Universe."


  • 515 Brewery
    • Eric and I are craft beer fans and we feel 515 makes some of the best beers in town!
  • Jasper Winery
    • Jasper is a beautiful place and we especially love going to their Thursday night concerts in the summer.  The events are family friendly and a great way to enjoy the beauty their land has to offer!
  • Peace Tree Brewery
    • One thing I love about Peace Tree is the owner is female; not many breweries are ran by women.  Their spot in East Village is amazing and they are even a winter vegetable share pick up site for my farmer friend Jill Bebout!
  • Snookies Malt Shop
    • Snookies is our favorite ice cream spot.  It's located in Beaverdale and we love taking the whole family there on a summer night.  Our favorite thing to do is watch all the dogs and how they devour their puppy cones.
  • Beaverdale Books
    • This gem of a bookstore is my favorite local place for books.  The staff is very knowledgable and we really enjoy their kids section.
  • Tiny Acre Farms
    • Stacey is entering into her second season as a flower farmer.  Her bouquets are beautiful and last much longer than flowers sourced commercially.  Check out her awesome "Flower Truck" project that is in the works!
  • Sullivan Family Pet Hospital
    • I trust Dr. Allison Sullivan with all three of our family pets.  Her knowledge and compassion for our animals goes above and beyond!

This list is by no means all inclusive as there are so many great locally owned businesses in Des Moines.  I would love to hear what some of your favorite spots are!


Your Urban FarmHer,