If we have learned anything over the past year, it is that when life takes away our abilities to travel and enjoy unique cultures abroad, all we can do is try to imitate them ourselves! The best way to do this is time spent in the kitchen exploring with fun recipes and ingredients. World Foods Market in Bloomington has all the ingredients you need to make your mom’s famous recipe, snacks you miss from studying abroad, and anything in between! A slice of the homeland in the Hoosier lands.

If you are one of those people who enjoy browsing aisles at grocery stores, you will have the time of your life at World Foods Market. This doesn’t even compare to Bloomington’s basic Kroger. Snacks and foods of all types from all over the world! Bloomington is filled with hidden gems, and we confidently say World Foods Market is at the top of that list. They are bound to have just what you need to make the most epic meal ever.

Natalie Jacobi

History of the Market 

World Foods Market has deep roots in Bloomington’s history. Originally under the name Sahara Mart, the current owner's father purchased the market in 1986, in a small location just off of 4th street. Now, two streets over on 2nd and Walnut and MUCH larger, owner Sara has expanded not only the walls but the selection of products as well. No matter what culture you’re craving to try, there is definitely something that you will love.

Unlike the common trend of businesses being taken down by the pandemic, Sara said their business actually thrived! Shoutout to the curiosity in the kitchen trend! Outside of just this past year they have had great success with bringing people in their doors. Since Sara has been a part of the business for so many decades, she has been able to recognize market trends and create new ones where they are needed. They are even open to product requests. So, stop in to see if they sell your favorite Mexican hot sauce, and if not, maybe Sara will pull a few strings to get it on the shelf.


The best part about World Foods Market is that they have staple items that belong in every refrigerator or pantry, but also items that you didn’t know you needed until you give them a try. Outside of the regular condiment section, cookies, and pasta aisles, you can find me checking out their fun chocolates. Chocolate bars from all over! They have recently expanded their Middle Eastern section and are now offering a variety of British teas and biscuits.

Natalie Jacobi

Coffee and Tea

World Foods Market has an entire wall dedicated to offering a wide variety of coffee beans and tea leaves. Most of the beans are from Schuil, which is a family-owned coffee company from Grand Rapids, Michigan. The rest of the soon-to-be-brewed options are Btown beans. There is a wide variety of beans from crazy flavors like chocolate fudge brownie and caramel cream, to Kenyan and Guatemalan beans, or Sara’s favorite, Kona Hawaii Blend.

Natalie Jacobi

Beer and Wine

Whether you consider yourself a wine connoisseur or someone who is just looking for a bottle to accompany your reality TV special on Monday nights, World Foods Market definitely has an option for anyone and everyone. We were AMAZED at the extensive selection. The market tries to bring in good value wines from all over. Sara stated, “We sell many hidden gems that you can’t necessarily find everywhere.” While I am no expert, I am able to recognize a nice bottle when I see one especially when it is tucked away in the $10 or less room. Yes, that is right. A room dedicated to us cheap college students who are always looking for a fun Friday night on a budget. Forget the Btown liqueur stores. Get your wine and beer AND snacks all in one spot.

Natalie Jacobi

And More!

Be sure to check out the wide selection of spices, olive bar, and hot items all near the back of the store. They also sell grab and go food that is prepared in house. Some items sold include hummus, samosas, fresh sauces, almond cookies, and much more! World Foods Market also sells home good items, supplements, and incense.

Natalie Jacobi

Check out their website to take a peek at just a few of the items that fill their nicely organized shelves. But let me emphasize that this is just a snapshot at the thousands of products that fill the aisles. Also, give their Instagram a follow to stay up to date on the latest products they have to offer. Be sure to stop in Monday – Saturday from 9 AM to 9 PM and Sunday from 10 AM to 8 PM. To make things easier, they offer curbside pickup and delivery within a 5 mile radius. However, I recommend shopping in person to get the full World Foods Market experience. You will feel like you have uncovered the best hidden gem in all of Bloomington.