Holiday Recipes and Inspiration from Newark Working Kitchens

Woman receiving a donated meal from NWK

Newark Working Kitchens’ (NWK) free meal delivery service for Newark residents is designed to activate Newark’s restaurants and deliver nutritious meals to low-income seniors and families. Since its creation in early April, NWK has delivered more than 650,000 meals to over 10,000 Newark residents across 44 locations!

Newark Working Kitchens

All meals are prepared by NWK’s 24 participating restaurants, including several minority- and family-owned establishments. NWK’s operations have sustained more than 200 jobs during the pandemic, including restaurants that have relaunched services and rehired staff as a result of the service’s support.

Woman delivering food from Newark Working Kitchens

Pre-Holiday Deliveries

This week, the NJ-based Newark Working Kitchens announced it will be delivering over 10,000 meals to Newark residents ahead of the holidays. This comes at a time of skyrocketing hunger and lack of access to food across the country, with 54 million Americans facing the prospect of food insecurity this holiday season.

As the Newark community continues to face restrictions and challenges brought on by the public health crisis, NWK wants to ensure that the community members most in need will have a warm meal for the holidays.

Each of the 24 Newark-based restaurants involved in NWK has created its own holiday-inspired menu, and will deliver meals to local residents in senior, low-income and disabled housing.

Sincerest Thanks

In addition to the citywide holiday meal delivery efforts, NWK will also provide meals on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day at University Hospital to thank frontline workers who have worked tirelessly to save lives during this incredibly difficult year.

We hope you enjoy these holiday recipes from two of the restaurants participating in Newark Working Kitchens. The Sweeeet Candied Yams recipe is courtesy of Uncle Willie’s and the cheesy Baked Macaroni and Cheese recipe comes from King’s Family Restaurant

Sweeeet Candied Yams

Sweet Candied Yams recipe

These are delicious as is OR you can whip them with a mixer until creamy with no lumps or fibers, transfer to a serving dish and line with your choice of chopped nuts (we like walnuts or pecans). You can also add marshmallows!


  • 6 large sweet potatoes (peeled, cut, and diced into squares)
  • 1 ½ cups brown sugar
  • 1 full cup of white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of cinnamon
  • ½ stick of butter
  • 2 cups of water


Put potatoes into a large pot and add all dry ingredients and 1 cup of water. As the water starts to boil, stir in ingredients. Lower the heat to a simmer (medium flame).

Stay close to the pot. As the syrup starts to thicken, slowly add more water. Stir to prevent burning and sticking.

As the potatoes cook they will go from bright orange to a medium brown-orange. The syrup should be thickened and the potatoes should be soft while holding their shape.

Yield: 12 one-cup servings

Baked Macaroni and Cheese

King's Family Mac & Cheese recipe
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes


  • 1 pound uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 1 cup butter (2 sticks)
  • 1 cup prepared cheese sauce
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1 cup mozzarella
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 Tbsp oregano
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 pinch of salt/pepper
  • 2 cups shredded mild cheddar cheese


Preheat oven to 350° F.

Boil macaroni according to the package directions for al dente and drain.

In a saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add cheese sauce, whisking constantly. Stir to make a roux.

Slowly add the milk to the roux, stirring constantly. After the milk and roux become creamy, stir in the mozzarella and Parmesan, black pepper, salt and oregano.

Cook over low heat until the cheese melts and the sauce thickens. Allow to cool for at least 30 minutes.

Fold beaten eggs into cooled cheese sauce. Mix well to combine.

Add boiled macaroni to cheese and egg mixture and toss to coat.

Pour into 9 x 13-inch baking pan.

Sprinkle mild shredded cheddar cheese over the top.

Bake at 350° F for at least 30 minutes or until mixture is bubbly and cheese has melted.