Where to Find ‘Real Food’

As college students, we face many new challenges when it comes to eating. Many of us especially struggle to incorporate what we think of as ‘real food’ into our diets because of the limited options in the dining halls. Instead of fresh food, we often settle for greasy cheeseburgers and chicken fingers without having a clue about where they came from. When it comes to dining halls and fast food restaurants, we are never sure exactly how ‘real’ our food really is. With this being said, where can we find real food?

Tuscaloosa River Market

If you’re looking to purchase fresh, locally grown food, look no further than the Tuscaloosa Farmers’ Market located in the River Market building. Conveniently located along the Riverwalk, this market is within walking distance of campus and is open every Saturday from 7am-12pm. The market includes anything from fresh fruits and vegetables of all kinds to cheese and grass fed beef. Any customer looking to purchase organic foods can find a large selection of items at affordable prices. My personal favorites are the fresh strawberries and the sweet homemade apple pie. It also offers a warm, comfortable environment with big windows overlooking the Black Warrior River.

The Fresh Market

If you’re looking for an easy way to buy a variety of organic food, The Fresh Market is the way to go. The Fresh Market is located on McFarland Blvd just outside of campus, so students looking to make the trip here don’t have to go far at all. The store has almost everything you can think of: free range meat, mixed nuts, baked in-store bread, and a variety a fruits and vegetables just to name a few. Customers can easily find what they need due to the store’s large selection, although some items can be a bit pricey. You can also visit the salad bar located in the store for a good healthy meal. For students looking to incorporate real food into their diet, the Fresh Market is a quick and easy way to find what you need.

Katie Farms

Katie farms is a unique and relatively new family farm located along the Warrior River just west of Northport. Here, hard-working farmers produce an array of items: purple sweet potatoes, tomatoes, okra, onions, corn, peppers, peaches, jelly, and several more. They also offer free range eggs and even raise Scottish Highland cattle. Katie farms supplies some of their produce to Jim ‘N’ Nicks of Tuscaloosa, Café J, and some grocery stores in the area such as Piggly Wiggly. Anyone looking for local produce grown with care should give products from Katie Farms a try. If you want to receive the full experience, you can even schedule a tour and learn even more about the how the farm works.


If you get tired of your dining hall diet and want to diversify your food choices, don’t hesitate to try out food from any of these places. They ultimately offer nutritious items and give you the peace of knowing how your food was raised.




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