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14 Minority-Owned Businesses In California

14 Minority-Owned Businesses In California

Since you're already a part of the system, why not diversify your spending habits and support mom and pop shops instead?


5 min read

August 14, 2021

Have you ever wondered why the founder of the top consumer-spending platform (Amazon) is one of the richest people in the world? That's because there is no power like consumer power—it makes up 70 percent of the nation's economy after all. And since you're already a part of the system, why not diversify your spending habits and support mom and pop shops instead? What’s your first course of action, you ask? Support a minority-owned business; here are a few to get you started.

Minority-Owned Businesses in Northern California 

The best time for ice cream is always. Everything is sweeter and more colorful with sprinkles on top. No one eats ice cream with a sad face.

1. Miyako Old Fashion Ice Cream

Based in: San Francisco

A sweet tooth's paradise, this Black-owned business is a Fillmore District must-try. Miyako Old Fashion Ice Cream serves locally-made, yummy, and delectable ice cream from its huge selection of flavors; each lick transports you to a world ruled by candy and sprinkles. Aside from desserts, this shop boasts sandwiches and other munchies that are perfect for when you have a bigger appetite.

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2. Marcus Books

Based in: Oakland 

The nation's oldest and leading Black-owned bookstore Marcus Books recently celebrated its 60th year in business; all the more reason for you to support it. Learn about Black culture from a myriad of writers and cherish the makers of art via nonfiction, classics, bestsellers, cookbooks, ancient history, poetry, and more. And who knows, maybe you’ll find your new fave novel written by a California-born author?

3. Hoppi Box 

Based in: San Francisco

Parents, this subscription box is for you. Hoppi Box is an Asian-owned minority business, specializing in eco-friendly, sustainable, and BPA-free toys picked out by expert advisers who know all about a child's developmental stage. A new set of toys is delivered to you each quarter, leaving your baby happy and entertained for a good three years. 

Match your cutie's style with adorable Ele Story clothing that's perfect for any mom and daughter duo.

4. Ele Story

Based in: San Francisco

If you want to have a cute matching moment with your child or ensure that your flower-girl has the most adorable dress ever, Ele Story is where you should be looking. Its beautiful collection of handmade flowy dresses, gorgeous accessories, and a huge mommy and me section will quickly become your favorite—not to mention, this minority-owned small business is super affordable.

5. Joe’s Ice Cream and Burgers 

Based in: San Francisco

Serving award-winning homemade ice cream flavors since 1959, Joe's Ice Cream and Burgers has truly stood the test of time—it's officially recognized as an S.F. legacy business. And, on top of that, current owners Sean and Alice Kim have added a Korean twist to the menu with new flavors like dalgona coffee and new dishes like Seoul-Food salad. Munch all you want and return for seconds, thirds, and tens.

6. Minnie Bell’s Soul Movement 

Based in: Emeryville 

No matter how many upscale restaurants you visit, nothing beats a scrumptious homemade meal. Minnie Bell's Soul Movement, a Black and women-owned business, can proudly say that they've perfected the art of mixing soulful flavors with high-quality ingredients. Founded by Ferney Mcpherson (who herself learned to cook from her great aunt Minnie and grandmother Lillie Bell), this joint serves probably the best-fried chicken and mac’n’cheese you’ll try in your life.

7. African American Expressions

Based in: Sacramento

The world's largest Black-owned gift and greeting card company, African American Expressions is truly a treasure. You won't be able to find so many designs, art pieces, and culturally authentic gifts (Black calendars, African American Christmas cards, Black figurines, Afrocentric accessories) all at once anywhere else. So, if buying from minority-owned businesses is important for you, pay AAE a visit.

Blume believes in products that are good for your body and the environment. With Blume, people grow to become their best naturally brave selves.

8. Blume

Based in: Mountain View 

Sisters Taran and Bunny Ghatrora founded a company that aims to empower women, and we're obsessed with it. Blume believes in protecting and nurturing your skin barrier, as well as never, ever damaging it. This minority and women-owned business realizes that in order to make good by your body and the environment (did we mention they're sustainable?), a company has to do a lot more than drop new releases from time to time. Instead, Blume carefully selects each ingredient, takes time to really develop a product, making it one of the best au naturel brands around. 

Minority-Owned Businesses in Southern California

9. Beyond Vegan

Based in: Los Angeles 

Refined by the vegan diet and devoid of any detrimental food items, Beyond Vegan is the healthy eatery of your dreams. This Black-owned business offers meal plans that include two meals per day along with breakfast smoothies, assorted fruits, snacks, and fresh-pressed juices. All of their food is GMO, starch, and gluten-free, and none of their meals contain any animal products.

If you haven't had manti before, you're missing out big time. Do yourself a favor and try your new favorite meal.

10. Carousel Restaurant

Based in: Los Angeles 

When it comes to Lebanese and Armenian cuisine, no one does it better than Carousel Restaurant, the OG Middle Eastern eatery. This delightful Armenian-owned restaurant's expertise is kabobs, namely the Urfa kabobs with eggplants. Carousel also boasts plenty of mouth-watering appetizers—their manti (mini meat pies topped with sauces), red tabbouleh, and cheese buregs are *chef's kiss*. Next time you’re touring Little Armenia, make sure to pay this lovely eatery a visit.

11. Urartu Coffee 

Based in: Glendale 

Established in 2004, Urartu Coffee is an Armenian family-operated business striving to create a cozy working space to be enjoyed over rich cups of coffee. Owner Urik and his son Youra share a passion for quality cuisine as well, and you can really see that reflected in their lunch specials. Order up and put the Armenian spin on Golden State’s most iconic foods to the test.

Shop Dela Gold makes authentic 14k gold jewelry. Not gold plated, not gold filled; genuine gold, which holds value and lasts a lifetime.

12. Shop Dela Gold

Based in: Los Angeles 

If you ever want to buy 14k solid gold jewelry and support a minority-owned business at the same time, look no further than Shop Dela Gold. This Filipina-owned shop in Los Angeles makes everything from custom sets and chains to pendants and bangles. So, the next time you're looking for a gift or a treat-yourself purchase, you know where to look.

13. Beauty Bakerie 

Based in: San Diego

By combining her passion for baking with her love of makeup, Cashmere Nicole came up with the idea for Beauty Bakerie, a cruelty-free, all-inclusive cosmetics company. And it didn't take long for this idea to take off and become a multi-million-dollar business either, duh. Whether you're looking to get your hands on the newest eyeshadow palette, a no-smudge lipstick, or the best setting spray on the market, Beauty Bakerie is here to steal the show.

A great book should leave you with many experiences, and slightly exhausted at the end. You live several lives while reading.

 14. A Good Used Book

Based in: Los Angeles 

Bookworms, rejoice—we found your new favorite store. Asian-owned A Good Used Book has new and (as the name suggests) used collections of books held in a constantly updating database. They offer free U.S. mail shipping and local pickups on the weekends in Koreatown, so hurry up and get the next book on your reading list.

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