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Our Favorite Des Moines Coffee Shops

If you’ve met with us to discuss real estate, life, kids, or anything really, you probably know that we love our coffees and teas.  One of the questions we get from clients who are moving to this area, or to a new part of town is where should they go for coffee / tea?  Here’s the list to our favorite coffee / tea shops all over town.  And by the way, we’ve written / reviewed offers at a lot of these…. Happy Drinking!


Ritual Café

1301 Locust Street Suite D Des Moines, IA 50309

What we love: One of my favorite spots in the midst of winter; the décor is warm and inviting, and we can have lunch here if needed. Try the grilled hummus! Note: Street parking only; watch the meter.


Horizon Line

1417 Walnut Street B, Des Moines, IA 50309

What we love: Bright and airy space and very smooth coffee. Chai is also a favorite here. Note: Street parking only; watch the meter.


Scenic Route Bakery

350 E. Locust Street #104 Des Moines, IA 50309


What we love: The Bakery! It’s a perfect place to indulge in pastries or yummy lunch options. With windows all around, in the midst of a bustling East Village, Scenic Route also makes for great people watching. Note: Street parking only; watch the meter.


Smokey Row

1910 Cottage Grove Avenue Des Moines, IA 50314

What we love: Coffee here is great, but the true gem here is the food. Breakfast sandwiches, biscotti, lunch, and a great kid’s menu. In the summer, that patio is fantastic.



2723 Ingersoll Avenue Des Moines, IA 50312

What we love: Visiting Zanzibar’s is an experience. We love the wide variety of coffees, teas, and the support for the community; check out the local art hung on the walls! Note: Zanzibar does not have wifi, by design. We get to have conversations instead of working!


Mars Café

2318 University Avenue Des Moines, IA 50311

What we love: Convenient location, yummy lattes and hot chocolates, and the yogurt parfait is also great for a quick lunch! Also, they have a printer you can use there if you’re working; what a great idea.


The Slow Down Coffee Co.

3613 6th Ave Des Moines, IA 50313

(515) 630-7000

We love having a fabulous coffee shop in the heart of Highland Park, by HIland Bakery and Chuck’s Restaurant! This is a true community coffee shop, with local art gracing the walls and gluten free treats.


Grounds for Celebration

2709 Beaver Avenue Des Moines, IA 50310

What we love: The Mango Blast smoothie is perfect before a workout, and the quiche is perfect after a workout. We also love checking out the rotating art and sitting by the fireplace in winter.


The Bean & Leaf Café

5814 Hickman Rd Des Moines , IA 50322 (515) 277-7994

This is a newer shop that also has ice cream and will be bringing in community game nights and activities. The owners, Gabriel and Fabian, are awesome. Try the brulee!


Coffee Cats

312 5th St West Des Moines, IA 50265 United States


If you like cats, coffee, and yoga, this is the place for you. Get a coffee or treat, and reserve time in the cat room. Be warned: this store is an adoption shelter for the Animal Rescue League, so you may go home with a cat or two!


Twisted Bean

4504 Merle Hay Road Urbandale, IA 50322

What we love: The location is perfect; we meet with folks from Ankeny, Johnston, Urbandale, here, and we have easy access to/from the highway. We also love that there’s a meeting room that can be reserved cheaply for bigger meetings.


Mahalo’s Coffee & Mini Donuts – Norwalk

1850 Sunset Dr Norwalk, IA 50211 515.223.1366

Same great shop as the West Des Moines, but now with a great drive-thru and sitting area. We love the Hawaiian flavors in our coffee and recommend some of the house blends. The mini donuts are amazing and you just can not eat one.


Main Street Cafe and Bakery

2510 SW White Birch Dr #1,2 Ankeny, IA 50023

What we love: Definitely the food! Especially partial to the pastas and the breakfast sandwiches.


Lightbrite Coffee Roasters

1895 SE Grimes Blvd Suite 104 Grimes, IA 50111

We love having local coffee right in Grimes. The lattes are especially creamy… we recommend the almond milk!


Porch Light Coffeehouse

417 SW 3rd St Ankeny, IA 50023

What we love: The cozy atmosphere! Yet another perfect place to catch up with long-lost friends.


The Coffeesmith

770 SE Alice’s Road Waukee, IA 50263

What we love: When this place opened in Waukee, we were super thrilled to have a local Waukee coffee shop. They are passionate about their coffee by the way, and their Little Smitty menu is popular with kids. We also like the ever-changing inspirational pictures and the abundant outlets.

Overall Notes:

  • Some companies have multiple locations; we’re just listing our most frequently visited location.
  • No business paid to be on this list.
  • We avoided including the larger chains: Starbucks, Caribou, and Scooter’s. There’s nothing wrong with these places, but we wanted to highlight the local businesses.
  • We have no scientific knowledge of what makes a good coffee bean or tea leaf, just personal opinions.