Eli’s Kitchen and Good Neighbors Team Up for Food Pantry Challenge

Chef Eli Dunn will take on the challenge of making a meal with the food pantry's ingredients live on Good Neighbors' Facebook page Tuesday at 11 a.m..


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Chef Eli Dunn of Eli’s Kitchen.

Good Neighbors food pantry is experiencing more need for food assistance than ever. Since mid-March, they’ve seen double the traffic to the hunger relief agency through the drive-through contactless pickup area. Visitors may be experiencing food insecurity for the first time, and Ric Wild, executive director of Good Neighbors, wanted to come up with something to make the experience more encouraging and engaging. He enlisted a local celeb chef to help out.

Good Neighbors distributes non-perishable items, meat, dairy and produce, mostly obtained through the Rhode Island Community Food Bank. The ingredients may be simple, but people can have some fun with them. To prove it, Wild reached out to “Chopped” champion, Eli Dunn, chef and owner of Eli’s Kitchen in Warren, who competed two times on the Food Network’s TV series “Chopped” and “Chopped Champions.” Wild asked if Dunn would be willing to take on the challenge of making a meal with the food pantry’s ingredients live on Good Neighbors Facebook page. Dunn agreed, and he’ll be taking on the challenge on giving Tuesday, May 5 at 11 a.m. live on the Good Neighbors’ Facebook page.

“A first-time guest at our pantry might look at these items and see them as boring,” Wild says. “I knew we could find someone that would be able to elevate these humble ingredients into a gourmet meal at home.”

Chef Eli will race against the clock to create a dish out of simple pantry staples in fewer than thirty minutes. The Facebook Live event coincides with the organization’s #GivingTuesdayNow campaign which seeks to raise $5,000 during the global day of giving. Thanks to an incredibly generous donor all donations up to $5,000 will be matched. Online donations can be made at the organization’s website goodneighborsri.org.



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