Feb 15, 2021
News Release

General Mills Foodservice awards $100,000 to independent restaurants in 6th annual Neighborhood to Nation Recipe Contest

Twenty winners will receive $5,000, robust marketing support and a chance to win an additional $5,000 for a local food bank charity.
Neighborhood to Nation logo feature image

MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota - General Mills Foodservice announces the winners in its 2020 Neighborhood to Nation Recipe Contest, an annual contest that celebrates independent restaurants and food trucks, their one-of-a-kind dishes and the vital role they play in our communities. The 20 winners, which include family and neighborhood restaurants, food trucks and caterers from across the country, will each receive $5,000 in cash, marketing support and the chance to be named the “People’s Choice” Grand Prize Winner for an additional $5,000 donation for a local food bank charity.

Due to the impact of COVID-19, General Mills doubled the number of winners, from 10 to 20, for this year’s recipe contest to give more restaurants and food truck operators the opportunity to win much-needed cash as well as paid advertising and other marketing tools to promote their business. Entrants were asked to upload a photo of their recipe using at least one ingredient from General Mills Foodservice’s participating brands and share how they used the product in a creative way or how their dish brings comfort and joy to their patrons during this challenging time.

“This past year has made it even more apparent the special place that independent eateries hold in the heart of their communities, exemplifying the spirit behind the Neighborhood to Nation Contest,” said Kelley Walhof, Brand Experience assistant manager for General Mills Foodservice, which partners with restaurants to provide back-of-house products, recipe inspiration and culinary support. “We are excited to announce this year’s winners, whose creativity and tenacity shine through with these 20 distinctive menu items.”

Walhof adds that the 2020 contest winners (see below) were surprised with the news of their win during Zoom calls with General Mills representatives during the past two weeks. Each of the 20 winners received a “celebration box” featuring a personalized sign and pennant to hang on their wall, a yard sign, an oversized check and a variety of fun marketing materials to promote their win among their customers, staff and community.

2020 Neighborhood to Nation Recipe Contest Winners

Black Magnolia Southern Patisserie
Entrant: Veneé Pawlowski
Greensboro, North Carolina
Recipe: Bourbon Banoffee Pecan Cinnamon Rolls

Madigan’s Pub & Grille
Entrant: Chris Nelson
Maple Lake, Minnesota
Recipe: Ragin' Cajun Pizza

Brown Butter and Southern Kitchen Bar
Entrant: Dayne Womax
New Orleans, Louisiana
Recipe: Nashville Hot Chicken & Waffle

My Favorite Things Food Truck
Entrant: Lea Ann Macrery
Jeffersonville, Vermont
Recipe: Caramel Topped Pumpkin Cheesecake Brownie

Corner Café
Entrant: Stephanie Cook
Orange, Massachusetts
Recipe: Maple Brownie Cakes with Candied Bacon

Nutcracker Family Restaurant
Entrant: Nancy Butcher
Pataskala, Ohio
Recipe: King of Rock & Roll Ice Cream Cake

Coyote Moon Grille
Entrant: Adam Meyer
St. Cloud, Minnesota
Recipe: Southern Fried Chicken Sandwich w Raspberry Chipotle Sauce

Southerleigh Fine Food and Brew
Entrant: Aaron Juvera
San Antonio, Texas
Recipe: Fried Pork Cheddar Sammie with Apple Caramel

Daisy’s Lunchbox Café & Bakery
Entrant: Suzanne Raiford
Searcy, Arkansas
Recipe: Peach Praline Galettes

Southerleigh Haute South
Entrant: JC Rodriguez
San Antonio, Texas
Recipe: Jalapeño Cheddar Holes with Charred Sweet Scallion Butter

Danutella’s Corner
Entrant: Danuta Rybak
Rego Park, New York
Recipe: Mushroom Latke Burger

Sugar Rush Baking Company LLC
Entrant: Natasha Huhn
Summit, Mississippi
Recipe: Berry Chantilly Napoleons

Elite Sweets by Nicole
Entrant: Nicole Amey
Tatamy, Pennsylvania
Recipe: Mulled Cider Muffins

The Little Farmer LLC
Entrant: Jill Daleiden
Malone, Wisconsin
Recipe: Pumpkin Snickerdoodles

Huya Craft Coffee
Entrant: Kily LaGarde
Youngsville, Louisiana
Recipe: Boudin Pastry Tarts

Union Straw
Entrant: Dan Lane
Waltham, Massachusetts
Recipe: Honey Hot Buttermilk Biscuit Slider

Jennings & Co.
Entrant: Peter Jennings
Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin
Recipe: Slip “Sliders” Away

Upper West
Entrant: Nick Shipp
Santa Monica, California
Recipe: Slow & Low Braised Pork Curried Crepes with Mango Salsa

Jetties Bagels
Entrant: George Blanchette
Ipswich, Massachusetts
Recipe: Mulled Apple Cider Bagels

Victoria’s Sugar Shack
Entrant: Victoria Poe
Kingman, Arizona
Recipe: Sugar Shack’s Coffee Cake


People's Choice Voting

Recipe winners now have opportunity to engage their customers and community to help them win an additional $5,000 for a local food bank when the contest opens up a social media voting element on General Mills Convenience and Foodservice’s Facebook page, Feb. 22 to 26, 2021. During this time, members of the public can cast a vote for their favorite or hometown recipe by "liking” and “commenting” on a photo of one of the 20 winning recipes. The recipe with the most "comments" will be named the “People’s Choice" Grand Prize Winner and announced via Facebook Live at noon (CST) on Monday, March 1, 2021.

"We know that restaurants are the first to step up to help when their community is in need," said Walhof. "With the growing hunger crisis that has only been exacerbated by COVID-19, we look forward to donating $5,000 to a local food bank on behalf of our Grand Prize Winner."

In addition to a $5,000 cash prize for themselves and securing $5,000 for a local food bank, the People's Choice Grand Prize winner will receive a VIP marketing package that includes a one-on-one culinary consultation with the chefs from General Mills Foodservice as well as additional marketing support to help them promote their business.

Recipes for the Neighborhood to Nation Recipes Contest were judged based on taste, appearance, creativity and foodservice viability. The contest was created to inspire culinary creativity among independent restaurants and food trucks, giving operators an opportunity to experiment with high-quality and consistent products from General Mills Foodservice as well as access to trend information, insights and ideas to help them differentiate their menus and delight their diners. For more information on the contest, please visit NeighborhoodToNation.com.

About General Mills

General Mills makes food the world loves. The company is guided by its Accelerate strategy to drive shareholder value by boldly building its brands, relentlessly innovating, unleashing its scale and being a force for good. Its portfolio of beloved brands includes household names such as Cheerios, Nature Valley, Blue Buffalo, Häagen-Dazs, Old El Paso, Pillsbury, Betty Crocker, Yoplait, Annie’s, Wanchai Ferry, Yoki and more. Headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA, General Mills generated fiscal 2021 net sales of U.S. $18.1 billion. In addition, the company's share of non-consolidated joint venture net sales totaled U.S. $1.1 billion.


Sarah Peterson