Our Story

Our Story

In 1982 the original founders, set out to build a new kind of Café combined with a Bakery. One that makes people the focus and quality, the foundation of their business; from the beginning, the belief was food should be fresh, fast and affordable. Today this still holds true, just as the first day Mary’s market Café and Bakery was open for business.

The Operating Philosophy of Our Bakery

We choose to buy only the highest-quality ingredients, because we want to be proud of our products and make the best breads, the best cakes, the best cookies and the best of everything that comes from our ovens that we possibly can each day, every day.  The ingredients that we purchase are all-natural always and organic whenever possible.

Our Chefs and Bakers are continuously exploring and discovering new recipes and mixing fresh ingredients with new flavors to come up with a new, great, tasty bakery products that will titillate our customer’s taste buds. We think eating healthy can also mean eating delicious. Our choices are made with the planet and the people in mind, as we work to nurture health for you, your family and our community.

The Operating Philosophy of Our Café

For us, best-quality means the purest, most natural, least processed products available. We know that it is less expensive to buy canned and frozen package products than it is to maintain a kitchen staff to prepare fresh foods. We believe that the quality makes this practice worthwhile. We seek partnership with food supplier businesses that take the time necessary to produce high-quality products. Our first choice is to get organic, local, in-season ingredients. You'll find only natural, wholesome ingredients, free of artificial additives in our menu items. Our commitment to fresh, healthy ingredients, fine food and excellent prices is our way of doing business.

Our History

Our Commitment to You

In addition to providing tasty, good-for-you Bakery products, Mary’s Market Café & Bakery since 1982 has long demonstrated its commitment to the general wellbeing of its customers. Our integrity and dedication to only the using freshest of products in everything we create is our mantra. We are proud of our record and will never compromise our quality food standards; we will continue to strive for excellence in all respects in order to offer the best products to our customers, and to maintain their trust in us. From the moment you purchase our products until the very last crumb, we want your experience to be enjoyable. If you are not 100% satisfied with any items you have ordered, we will make it right.

Our talent!

Chef Peter     {Peter Swanson}

Chef Peter Swanson joined Mary’s Market in 2016 as the head chef. He is responsible for menu and recipe development, scheduling and overseeing the kitchen operations for the three café’s and Catering. Peter’s education includes Milikin University, West Palm Community College and Rock Valley College, including Illinois State Certified Safe Food Handler since 2001.

With a long and experienced background Chef Peter came to Mary’s Market with over 15 years of experience with the Hoffman House, as the head chef of Ishnala supper club, the lead banquet Chef when he relocated to the Rockford location and as the head Chef of Henrici's Catering, the exclusive caterer at the Pavilion of Orchard Ridge Farms in Rockton, Illinois. Prior to that Peter was sous chef - Old Calypso of Delray Beach, Florida for 3 years and the Kitchen Manager of the Rainforest Cafe of Aventura, Chef Swanson recently updated the menus at Mary’s Market, devising a spin on old favorites such as the Crab Cakes and adding new sandwiches and entrees to the café’s selections.

Chef Swanson can be contacted at peter@marysmarket.com 815-316-0919

Special Requests

Looking for a donation for your event? Mary's Market is honored to take a role in making your not for profit event a successful one. Please contact Lisa Beardsworth for donation requests, ContactUs@marysmarket.com

We love our donors and could not do what we do without YOU! We are proud that Mary's Market is our partner in the fight against hunger. Your donations, and that of other generous supporters, make it possible to serve 388 meals each day, 365 days a years. Thank you for making it a priority to help us feed our hungry neighbors in the Rock River Valley. Sherry Pitney, Rockford Rescue Mission