Minnesota Central Kitchen, an initiative of Second Harvest Heartland

MN Central Kitchen

Minnesota Central Kitchen brings together restaurants, caterers, and hunger-fighting organizations to tackle hunger and service-sector layoffs brought on by the pandemic. We provide prepared meals to anyone to respond to the surge in hunger and see communities through recovery.

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How Minnesota Central Kitchen Works

MN Central Kitchen

Food rescue
Our food service, restaurant and catering partners provide the kitchen space, employees, supplies and ingredients to supplement the donations from the MealConnect platform, an app that allows area institutions a medium to donate large-scale food items to Minnesota Central Kitchen. Currently, more than 60% of our meals are prepared with rescued food.

Meals are then prepared by expert culinary teams, including Chowgirls Catering, Surly Brewing Company, The Sioux Chef, Appetite for Change, The Wedge Table, Eat for Equity, Community Bridge, Mintahoe Catering, and Boston Scientific’s Eurest Catering.

Meal distribution
Then, a distribution network coordinated by Second Harvest Heartland delivers these beautiful and nutritious meals to partner organizations in communities throughout the Twin Cities and within Greater Minnesota, led by Loaves & Fishes with partners Pillsbury United Communities, The Sanneh Foundation, SafeZone and InvolveMN.

Access Prepared Meals

The vision of Minnesota Central Kitchen is to ensure all who need a meal can have one. To find meal distribution sites and other food resources in your neighborhood, use Hunger Solutions’ interactive map. Additional emergency and longer-term food resource information can be found on our resources page.

Minnesota Central Kitchen Founders, Partners and Donors

Minnesota Central Kitchen is led by Second Harvest Heartland, founding partners Chowgirls Catering and Loaves & Fishes, hard-working production kitchens and a growing number of restaurants, food service providers and supporters.

This work wouldn’t be possible without financial and in-kind support from our very generous donors, including the Cargill Foundation, General Mills Foundation, Medtronic Foundation, Cloverfields Foundation, Pohlad Family Foundation, Humana Foundation, Boston Scientific, ReFED, The Good Acre, UnitedHealth Group and more than 2,000 individual donors.

Our Impact

MN Central Kitchen

  • Restaurants and businesses interested in becoming a kitchen partner site should submit their information to Emily Paul, Minnesota Central Kitchen executive director
  • Commercial kitchens with food to donate can submit information via MealConnect
  • Donations of non-food items, like cleaning supplies, gloves, pans and plastic wrap, can be coordinated by contacting donations@chowgirls.net
  • Anyone who is able to donate financially can do so here

MN Central Kitchen, #MNkitchensunite, Minnesota Kitchen, Central Kitchen, MCK Kitchen


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