Safest Cities List in Minnesota

  • Population
    5,606,249
  • Avg Annual Rent
    $11,943
  • Avg Household Income
    $70,913
  • Cost of Living
    17.30%
  • Violent Crime Rate
    9.7
  • Property Crime Rate
    243.7
  • Primary Care Ranking
    16
  • Mental Health Provider
    23

Minnesota

You only have to glance at a map of Minnesota to see why it earned the nickname "Land of 10,000 Lakes." In fact, there are so many lakes in the state that many of them share the same name — with Mud, Long and Rice being the most common. Minnesota is also the only state where it's possible to "walk across the Mississippi," since this river's headwaters can be found in Lake Itasca. Although it's impossible to mention Minnesota without discussing its lakes and natural resources, the state is also well-known for its thriving metropolis called the Twin Cities, where Minneapolis and St. Paul converge into one mega-city with an estimated population of over 3.6 million in the entire metropolitan area. Discover which suburbs and small towns made it onto our list of the safest cities in Minnesota. 

How We Determined the Safest Cities in Minnesota

We narrowed down the safest cities in each state based on two primary categories. First, we evaluated public safety factors including violent, property and hate crimes in each area to help determine the safest areas to live. We then evaluated financial and socioeconomic factors including household income, average rent and health insurance. In addition, we evaluated each state for natural disaster safety and public health safety. You can find a detailed breakdown of our methodology and links to sources here.

Here are the public safety factors we counted for each city:

*Public safety data is based on a population of 10,000 (for example, a “2” means two incidents for every 10,000 people).

  • Property crime – Number of property crimes reported in the city (FBI Crime Report)
  • Violent crime – Number of violent crimes reported in the city (FBI Crime Report)
  • Aggravated assaults – Number of aggravated assaults reported in the city (FBI Crime Report)
  • Hate crime – Number of hate crimes reported in the city (FBI Hate Crime Report)
  • Officer-related incidents – Number of officer-involved shootings reported in the city (Gun Violence Archive)
  • Mass shootings – Incidents in which four or more people are shot/killed in the city (Gun Violence Archive)

Here are the financial safety factors we counted for each city:

  • Annual rent – Annualized median rent
  • Unemployment rate – The average rate of unemployed residents in each city
  • Cost of living – The average annual rent and household income per city
  • Poverty rate – Percentage of families that reported experiencing poverty in the last 12 months
  • Uninsured employed – Percentage of employed residents that reported not having health insurance
  • Uninsured unemployed – Percentage of unemployed residents that reported not having health insurance

20 Safest Cities in Minnesota

  • No. 1 Mendota Heights

    An affluent suburb of the Twin Cities, Mendota Heights is known for the Mendota Heights Par 3 Golf Course and Friendly Marsh Park. Factors that contribute to Mendota Heights clinching the top spot in our list of safest cities in Minnesota include relatively average rent rates combined with high average household incomes, a low poverty rate and a high rate of internet access.

    97out of 100

    Public Safety

    77out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    2.635972234 (1st)11.42254635 (16th)181.8820842 (10th)0.878657 (14th)0.878657 (14th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    13152 (11th)119615 (1st)0.033 (11th)0.022 (20th)0.013 (11th)0.188 (6th)
  • No. 2 Prior Lake

    When it’s time to work or shop, Prior Lake 27,000-plus residents can easily travel north to Minneapolis. But there’s no reason to leave the city limits to relax or play thanks to the large lake in the middle of town. Aside from excellent opportunities to play on the water, Prior Lake also offers indoor fun with two casinos on the northwest side of town. No matter what you choose to do in Prior Lake, our data indicates it’s one of the safest places to be in Minnesota. 

    98out of 100

    Public Safety

    72out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    6.685236769 (13th)8.17084494 (11th)213.1847725 (12th)0.742804 (12th)0.742804 (12th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    13260 (9th)103889 (6th)0.033 (11th)0.041 (13th)0.017 (7th)0.051 (19th)
  • No. 3 Eden Prairie

    With 95% of residents believing Eden Prairie offers an above-average quality of life, perhaps it’s no surprise that this town also earns a top spot on our list of the safest cities in Minnesota. With over 2,800 businesses in a town of nearly 65,000 residents, Eden Prairie enjoys a bustling economy and plenty of fun things to do, including riding roller coasters at Valleyfair or watching a play at the Chanhassen Dinner Theatres.

    99out of 100

    Public Safety

    69out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    3.542985659 (8th)2.464685676 (2nd)134.4794122 (6th)0.154043 (4th)0.154043 (4th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    16224 (5th)106555 (2nd)0.029 (15th)0.041 (13th)0.007 (18th)0.204 (5th)
  • No. 4 Maple Grove

    One factor earning Maple Grove such a high ranking on our list of the safest cities in Minnesota is its low hate crime index. Simply put, people are friendly here, and diversity is cherished by most residents. In fact, you’ll see numerous houses of worship throughout Maple Grove, including the Hindu Temple of Minnesota. 

    100out of 100

    Public Safety

    67out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    3.034399051 (5th)3.034399051 (3rd)154.0647155 (8th)0.137927 (1st)0.137927 (1st)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    17844 (2nd)105369 (5th)0.027 (18th)0.028 (18th)0.006 (20th)0.17 (7th)
  • No. 5 Woodbury

    Woodbury has the highest average rent among all of the cities on our list despite not having the highest average household income. Fortunately, the vast majority of Woodbury’s 72,828 residents live above the poverty line. Woodbury also boasts the highest percentage of home internet access on our list of the safest Minnesota cities. The area is known for an extensive 140-mile trail system connecting many of its neighborhoods and parks.

    100out of 100

    Public Safety

    67out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    3.244005642 (7th)3.808180536 (5th)132.7221439 (5th)0.141044 (2nd)0.141044 (2nd)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    17940 (1st)105393 (4th)0.027 (18th)0.023 (19th)0.007 (18th)0.257 (1st)
  • No. 6 Lakeville

    Lakeville is known for having a diverse park system, where each one offers something a little different. For example, Marion Lake at Antler’s Park has a swimming beach, whereas Champion Valley Park features axe throwing and archery. With so many varied activities, Lakeville’s 67,000-plus residents have plenty of reason to get out and explore. And according to our data, they can feel quite safe during their adventures. 

    97out of 100

    Public Safety

    69out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    2.926949502 (3th)3.080999476 (4th)81.95458607 (1st)0.9243 (15th)0.9243 (15th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    17184 (3rd)106069 (3rd)0.026 (20th)0.029 (16th)0.008 (16th)0.094 (16th)
  • No. 7 Janesville

    Janesville is a small town with just 2,252 residents located in Minnesota’s south central region near Mankato. The main attraction for residents and visitors alike is the reversible nine-hole golf course on the north side of town. Notably, Janesville has one of the best income-to-rent ratios on our list.

    95out of 100

    Public Safety

    67out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    13.28021248 (19th)13.28021248 (17th)97.38822488 (3rd)4.426737 (20th)4.426737 (20th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    7896 (18th)72500 (12th)0.038 (7th)0.071 (6th)0.024 (4th)0.075 (18th)
  • No. 8 North Branch

    North Branch earned a spot on our list of the safest cities in Minnesota because the vast majority of its residents have insurance, regardless of whether they’re also employed. Fortunately, most people in North Branch do have a job, since this town of about 10,700 has an unemployment rate of just 4.3%. Perhaps North Branch’s busy shopping district along Highway 95 and I-35 accounts for the area’s high employment rate.

    97out of 100

    Public Safety

    62out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    2.854152792 (2nd)8.562458377 (12th)234.040529 (13th)0.951384 (16th)0.951384 (16th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    10956 (14th)77750 (9th)0.043 (2nd)0.05 (11th)0.039 (2nd)0.023 (20th)
  • No. 9 Northfield

    Home to St. Olaf College and Carleton College, Northfield is a vibrant town with art, history, nature and shopping within easy reach. Rent in Northfield is among the most affordable on our list of the safest cities in Minnesota, but this town of over 20,700 people has one of the highest poverty rates at 10.1%. 

    98out of 100

    Public Safety

    57out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    9.252495739 (16th)4.38276114 (7th)96.90771853 (2nd)0.517411 (9th)0.517411 (9th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    9792 (17th)65441 (16th)0.04 (4th)0.101 (2nd)0.014 (9th)0.139 (9th)
  • No. 10 Moorhead

    Located on the eastern banks of the Red River, which delineates the North Dakota-Minnesota state line, Moorhead is the only city in northwest Minnesota to earn a spot on our list. Moorhead’s economy once relied heavily on agriculture, but now there are numerous manufacturing and corporate opportunities, giving the city an impressive unemployment rate of just 2.9%.

    98out of 100

    Public Safety

    57out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    4.352108482 (9th)9.620450329 (14th)234.5557413 (14th)0.687175 (10th)0.687175 (10th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    10068 (16th)60677 (17th)0.029 (15th)0.092 (3rd)0.012 (12th)0.099 (14th)
  • No. 11 Inver Grove Heights

    Inver Grove Heights neighbors another city on our list, Mendota Heights. A suburb of St. Paul, Inver Grove Heights hugs the western banks of the Mississippi River. Originally ”Inver” and ”Grove” were two separate communities settled by Irish and German immigrants, respectively. Now, more than 35,000 people live in the modern-day incorporated city. 

    99out of 100

    Public Safety

    53out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    9.552708474 (17th)15.73387278 (18th)157.3387278 (9th)0.280962 (6th)0.280962 (6th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    12576 (12th)74883 (11th)0.041 (3rd)0.073 (5th)0.02 (6th)0.207 (4th)
  • No. 12 Brooklyn Park

    With over 80,000 residents, Brooklyn Park is the sixth-largest city in the Land of 10,000 Lakes and the largest to appear on our list of the safest cities in Minnesota. Brooklyn Park covers 27 square miles and includes an impressive 60 parks and 50 soccer fields. Historic Eidem Farm remains an important landmark in Brooklyn Park: Visitors can witness farm life as it was at the turn of the 20th century.

    98out of 100

    Public Safety

    54out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    15.62826871 (20th)21.53501594 (20th)303.3360816 (18th)0.492229 (8th)0.492229 (8th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    12072 (13th)70448 (13th)0.04 (4th)0.069 (7th)0.014 (9th)0.224 (3rd)
  • No. 13 Blaine

    Blaine a town just north of the Twin Cities, has one of the lowest hate crime indices of all the Minnesota cities on our list. It also boasts a high internet access rate, low poverty rate and low unemployment rate. The only reason Blaine — the home of the Golden Wings Flying Museum — doesn’t rank a little higher is its relatively high cost of living. 

    100out of 100

    Public Safety

    48out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    5.788359305 (11th)3.960456366 (6th)259.7145425 (17th)0.152325 (3rd)0.152325 (3rd)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    14616 (6th)83201 (8th)0.031 (13th)0.037 (15th)0.011 (13th)0.123 (10th)
  • No. 14 Minnetonka

    Eden Prairie’s neighbor to the north, Minnetonka has a relatively high cost of living but a relatively low poverty rate of just 2.9%. Perhaps the presence of large corporations such as Cargill and Carlson contribute to Minnetonka’s high rate of employment.

    99out of 100

    Public Safety

    48out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    3.173240252 (6th)2.053273104 (1st)151.1955649 (7th)0.186661 (5th)0.186661 (5th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    16308 (4th)91374 (7th)0.034 (10th)0.029 (16th)0.008 (16th)0.108 (13th)
  • No. 15 Fairmont

    A series of lakes cuts through the middle of Fairmont city limits, although most of the town’s developments are located along the northeastern shores. Despite having an unemployment rate of only 4%, Fairmont has the highest poverty rate (13.1%) on our list of safest Minnesota cities. 

    97out of 100

    Public Safety

    48out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    2.984183826 (4th)8.952551477 (13th)242.7136178 (15th)0.994728 (17th)0.994728 (17th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    7752 (20th)48826 (19th)0.04 (4th)0.131 (1st)0.053 (1st)0.098 (15th)
  • No. 16 St. Louis Park

    St. Louis Park is a quintessential example of a well-developed Minneapolis suburb, dotted with residential neighborhoods, shopping centers, parks and small lakes. With a low unemployment rate and under 1% of unemployed residents living without insurance, St Louis Park offers a high degree of financial safety, tempered only by its relatively high cost of living.

    96out of 100

    Public Safety

    46out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    8.266962395 (15th)5.847363646 (10th)247.4039722 (16th)1.008166 (18th)1.008166 (18th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    14112 (7th)75690 (10th)0.029 (15th)0.058 (10th)0.009 (15th)0.111 (12th)
  • No. 17 Coon Rapids

    Coon Rapids features a gorgeous riverside park along its entire border with the Mississippi River, and the town’s 63,000 residents pay an average of $13,368 in rent per year to enjoy living in close proximity to such natural beauty. With an average annual household income just over of $70,000, Coon Rapids bears the dubious distinction of having the second-highest cost of living among all the cities on our list. 

    99out of 100

    Public Safety

    43out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    8.118692095 (14th)5.094081314 (8th)210.4492343 (11th)0.47757 (7th)0.47757 (7th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    13368 (8th)70413 (14th)0.038 (7th)0.049 (12th)0.01 (14th)0.144 (8th)
  • No. 18 St. Peter

    Home of the Nicollet County Fairgrounds, St. Peter borders the Minnesota River in the state’s south central region. It was once a contender to become the state capital, but today it remains a small college town with nearly 12,000 residents — and one of the safest cities in Minnesota.

    97out of 100

    Public Safety

    42out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    5.827505828 (12th)5.827505828 (9th)126.5401265 (4th)0.832501 (13th)0.832501 (13th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    10536 (15th)55758 (18th)0.03 (14th)0.06 (8th)0.024 (4th)0.23 (2nd)
  • No. 19 Maplewood

    The suburb of Maplewood surrounds St. Paul to the north and east. Despite average stats in areas such as unemployment, poverty and internet access, Maplewood has the highest cost of living compared to all the safest cities in Minnesota. To put this in perspective, consider that the average rent in Maplewood costs $100 more each year than in Mendota Heights, but Maplewood residents make nearly $53,000 less per year on average than Mendota Heights residents.

    96out of 100

    Public Safety

    36out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    12.09511599 (18th)9.676092794 (15th)449.6964126 (20th)1.209512 (19th)1.209512 (19th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    13248 (10th)66758 (15th)0.046 (1st)0.075 (4th)0.016 (8th)0.094 (16th)
  • No. 20 Fergus Falls

    Fergus Falls is home to lots of farmland, hillsides, and more than 1,000 lakes. The town is located in Otter Tail County, Minn. and was named after James Fergus by Joe Whitford who found the location. Residents can enjoy canoeing, boating, fishing, and other watersports in this close-knit community.

    98out of 100

    Public Safety

    34out of 100

    Financial Safety

    Public Safety

    Total Violent CrimeSociety CrimesProperty CrimeHate CrimeOfficer IncidentMass Shootings
    5.058168943 (10th)16.61969796 (19th)352.6266349 (19th)0.722596 (11th)0.722596 (11th)0 (1st)

    Financial Safety

    Annual RentHousehold IncomeUnemployment RatePovertyUninsured EmployedUninsured Unemployed
    7812 (19th)43969 (20th)0.037 (9th)0.059 (9th)0.032 (3rd)0.12 (11th)

Minnesota State Safety

Natural Disaster Safety

Insurance Journal ranks Minnesota as the 40th state most likely to experience some form of natural disaster. In other words, Minnesota is the 10th-safest state in terms of natural disasters. Located in the Upper Midwest and riddled with lakes and rivers, it’s no surprise that Minnesota regularly experiences all types of winter weather (including extreme cold and blizzards), flooding and tornadoes. Wildfires and extreme heat are also possible in summer. In fact, a forest fire that occurred in 1918 is considered the worst natural disaster in Minnesota history.

40out of 50

Natural Disaster

Health Safety

The 2019 report by America’s Health Rankings considers Minnesota the seventh-healthiest state in the nation, citing low poverty rates for children and a low incidence of heart disease, among other factors. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Minnesota has the lowest rate of heart disease-related deaths in the U.S. However, heart disease remains the second leading cause of death in the state. Cancer is the leading cause of death for Minnesotans. Other significant stats include relatively low rates of drug overdose and homicide.

7out of 50

Health Safety

Top 31 Safest Cities in Minnesota

Mendota Heights11,3811811
Prior Lake26,9251422
Eden Prairie64,917443
Maple Grove72,502164
Woodbury70,900255
Lakeville64,9141936
Janesville2,2592877
North Branch10,5112088
Northfield19,3271199
Moorhead43,657121110
Inver Grove Heights35,59261311
Brooklyn Park81,26391212
Blaine65,64931513
Minnetonka53,57351414
Fairmont10,053211615
St. Louis Park49,595221716
Coon Rapids62,81881817
St. Peter12,012161918
Maplewood41,339232019
Fergus Falls13,839132220
Mankato42,606262121
New Brighton22,978172322
Mounds View13,235152523
Detroit Lakes9,289272424
Red Wing16,405242625
Columbia Heights21,11973026
West St. Paul19,798103127
St. Cloud54,591252928
Rochester117,037291029
St. Paul309,756302830
Minneapolis428,261312731