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The Green Goods’ List: Best Restaurants in Bloomington, Minnesota

While these days it’s better known as a bustling suburb of Minneapolis—and the home of Mall of America—Bloomington has a proud history of its own. Populated by Sioux people in the 1830s, those Native Americans were followed by European settlers sent to teach them modern farming methods a few years later. Even then, it seemed, eating well was close to Minnesotans’ hearts.

Fast forward to today, when Bloomington restaurants run the gamut of seemingly every possible style and ethnicity. From hearty American grub to flavorful Indian, Vietnamese and classic Italian, it’s hard to stay hungry in Bloomington for long.

To help you choose, the staff at Green Goods put together this list of the best Bloomington restaurants. Try them all, and let us know which ones you liked the best!

Green Goods’ Favorite Bloomington Restaurants

Shantytown Grill

8512 Pillsbury Ave S
Bloomington, MN 55420
(952) 881-7223

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Wait…this place? The exterior, if we’re being honest, doesn’t look terrifically inviting. And the inside’s nothing special either. But this well-worn bar and grill is one of Bloomington’s favorites when it comes to old-fashioned hamburgers, quesadillas, and other salty snacks that go great with beer.

Aroma Indian Cuisine

Bloomington restaurants 1

517 W 98th St
Bloomington, MN 55420
(952) 479-7154

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Truth in advertising: The aroma here is mighty inviting! Clean, sleek, and inviting, this Indian favorite serves up modern interpretations of classic dishes like spicy chicken vindaloo, steaming-hot naan flatbreads, and crunchy pakora. But those who wander from the tried-and-true will be amply rewarded: Unusual dishes like “Gobi Manchurian” serve crisp, fried cauliflower in an addictive sweet-sour Indo-Chinese glaze, and a slew of highly regional layered biryani rice dishes beg repeat visits.

Luna di Luna

8820 Lyndale Ave S
Bloomington, MN 55420
(952) 303-4111

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Another Bloomington restaurant with a less-than-auspicious exterior, this little Italian gem hides a warm and welcoming interior behind its boxy facade. The food hits exactly the same notes: Familiar and inviting, the kind of food you’ll want to sink into with a glass of wine or two. Ceciliana combines hot sausage and an impossibly rich bolognese sauce over penne pasta; cinco formaggio blends no fewer than five cheeses to enrobe tortellini. The mood is intimate, practically screaming “date night!” But you’re equally welcome just on your own, too.

Saigon Palace Restaurant

Bloomington restaurants 2

401 Burnsville Pkwy
Burnsville, MN 55337
(952) 808-8920

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If the decor and vibe are nothing special, they only serve to focus your attention where it should be: On the stellar renditions of famous dishes from Vietnam’s bright and lively cuisine. Yes, you’ll find pho, the rich and aromatic beef-and-noodle soup. But venture further afield for Mì thâp câm, a very special bowl packed with calamari, shrimp, rice noodles and barbecued pork in a flavorful pork broth. And when warmer weather hits, you can’t beat a meal of bún: Cool noodles salads topped with shredded veggies and delectable grilled meats.

Snuffy’s Malt Shop

1200 W 98th St
Bloomington, MN 55431
(952) 888-1018

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A Minnesota classic for nearly 40 years, Snuffy’s is like a vintage car that never lets you down. Slinging never-frozen burgers on plain or pumpernickel buns, onion rings, french and waffle fries too, the vibe is retro to the max here. That goes double for the milkshakes—made with real ice cream—and malts, floats, and phosphates. There are nods to modernity here and there—a decent veggie burger with zingy house dill sauce; a turkey version with chipotle mayo—but we all know it’s the taste of yesteryear that keeps the crowds coming.

After a belly full of great food, don’t forget to stop by your favorite Bloomington dispensary!