The Best Organic Food Stores In LA

| © Elina Mark/WikiCommons
Marnie Sehayek

Fit and healthy lifestyles are the better byproduct of Los Angeles’ glamorized ideal. Food fads burn through the city like calories on a treadmill, but when it comes to stocking your pantry, there are several stalwart purveyors of the good stuff that take their community roots seriously. Sure, there are Whole Foods and Lassens outlets throughout LA, but these natural food stores keep their operations and their communities tight-knit.

1. Urban Radish

Market, Grocery Store, American

The Downtown LA Arts District’s very own Urban Radish is a mom-and-pop shop that is small and mighty by design. The store is a light and airy, curated grocery experience with an emphasis on ethical production and artisan food items, from a choice organic, locally sourced vegetable selection to dairy from small-batch producers to a butchery that offers cruelty-free meats and seafood. Their in-house Mediterranean-influenced eatery adheres to the same high standards as the grocery store, and though some selections rotate with the seasons, all are invariably healthy and delicious.

2. Erewhon

Bar, Juice Bar, Food Stall, American

A trip to Erewhon is definitely a kick in the wallet, but while this mid-city mega store is pricey, you’ll walk out having done yourself some good. With a bulk bin selection of over 200 grains, beans, nuts and other tasty munchies, a natural wine selection, fine imported cheeses, a robust tea assortment, and a naturopathic department with vitamins galore and a prime selection of natural body care products, this spot is a heavyweight in the natural foods scene. Stop by the in-house juice bar for a cold-pressed zinger while you peruse the aisles.

3. Rainbow Acres

Bar, Juice Bar, Food Stall, Grocery Store, Vegan, Healthy

Since the 1970s, locally owned Rainbow Acres has been a superb, albeit, humble health food purveyor in Los Angeles. The store has a real community feel – several members of their uber-friendly staff have been with the store since its inception, and they know their way around every product in tow. Plus, they have an in-house juice bar and prepared-food counter. Rainbow Acres also employs a full-fledged wellness staff, including in-house nutritionists, herbologists, and holistic health practitioners to consult with you on a supplemental regimen that suits your lifestyle or customize a sure cure for whatever ails you faster than you can say ‘homemade vegan oatmeal carob banana cookie,’ which, by the way, comes highly recommended.

4. Co-opportunity

Market, Grocery Store, American

Co-opportunity is a community-owned, community-run market in Santa Monica. The market was initially founded in 1974 by a handful of locals as the Westside Buyers Club, but demand continually exceeded supply, prompting a round of significant expansions. While you don’t need to be a member to shop at the store, $25 per year will make you part owner of the natural foods mecca, and you’ll earn a yearly dividend, discounts and giveaway opportunities and entrance into dozens of local partner organizations. With ongoing initiatives such as donating surplus foods to the homeless and a school nutrition program, community meets mission at Co-opportunity.

5. One Life

Bar, Deli, Juice Bar, Market, American, Seafood, Fast Food

The wood-paneled walls and black-and-white tile floor of One Life on Main Street are enough to transport you to a sun-soaked 1970s granola daydream. The community market is at once intimate and well stocked, peddling organic groceries, vitamins, supplements, herbs and body care products to the communities it borders – Santa Monica and Venice. Stop by the juice bar to put some pep in your step and check out the deli counter if you need a quick bite – choose from salads and sandwiches to a variety of hot prepared foods.

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