Our Favorite Markets for Grocery Pretend Play


I am so excited to share my new Grocery Store Dramatic Play Resource. You can find it in my TPT store, as well as my Vet Clinic Dramatic Play Resource. Dramatic Play is such a wonderful way to build literacy, math, and social emotional skills into your day. I love that these materials can be used at home or school. I always try to makes my resources easy to use if you are a teacher, or a parent working on adding more intentional play to their child’s routine.

Grocery store dramatic play, and market pretend play. Books for your grocery store dramatic play unit.

Today, I wanted to share some of my favorite “markets” to add to your Grocery Store Dramatic Play Unit. You can find these items in my Amazon store, or use the links below. Amazon is the easiest way for me to share links with you, but I encourage you to check thrift stores, Buy Nothing groups on Facebook, and Facebook Marketplace before purchasing them! These links are affiliate links. That means I receive a small stipend when you use my links at no cost to you. I use these stipends to continue to create valuable resources and share them with you.

My Favorite Markets or Pretend Stores

Cube Storage

My favorite item for pretend play is a storage cube shelf unit. It can be grocery store shelves, a vet clinic, a teacher desk for a pretend classroom, and so much more. I find it so easy to change the materials out, and I’ve even seen people turn them into dollhouses.

Le Toy Van Market and Cafe Stand

This is one of my favorite pretend “markets,” and the one I personally have. It’s expensive, but it was a perfect Christmas gift from our extended family. I asked them to go in together for it (it was about 175$ at the time), and that worked out very well. It wasn’t too expensive for anyone, and we have an amazing staple in our pretend play set up. I love that it’s “reversible.” One one side, the shelves are open and it’s perfect for a grocery store or farmer’s market. If you flip it around, it’s the perfect little cafe/restaurant set up. Anytime I can use our toys for multiple purposes, I’m thrilled!

KidKraft Wooden Grocery Store Pop-Up

If you don’t have a designated play area in your home or classroom, these “Pop Ups” from KidKraft are awesome. I shared about the Vet Clinic in my Vet Clinic blog post, and I love that they also have a market. You can see in the photo this folds up fairly small and would easily fit in a small closet. It doesn’t fold completely flat, but it’s still much smaller than the other markets. I really love the conveyor belt on this one!

Melissa and Doug Freestanding Wooden Grocery Store

This is definitely the most expensive item on my list (probably on any of my lists), and it takes up a lot of room. I’d only recommend this set for a classroom, or a home with a big playroom where it could stay out. However, if your family or class really loves pretend play, you can’t get much better than this! It has a built in card reader that looks SO real, and the conveyor belt is very cool. It has great storage for food, and you could easily turn this into a cafe, donut shop, or even an little ice cream shop!

Melissa and Doug Grocery Store and Lemonade Stand

This was the best price I could find on a pretend market. I love that it includes the plastic bins, and it makes for such easy set up. This isn’t reversible, you just change the awning. I really wish the awning was blank or generic enough, because I feel like that limits the type of play you can use it for. I would probably change it to a solid piece of fabric, but it’s still a fabulous product!

Do you have a “market” or pretend grocery store for play? I’d love to hear about it!

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