Three years after the release of their first cookbook Trap Kitchen: Bangin' Recipes From Compton former rival gang members turned famous chefs  Malachi "Spank" Jenkins and Roberto "News" Smith are back with a second serving. 

The “Trap” in the company’s name is an acronym for “Take a Risk and Prosper” and they have definitely completed that mission. From a business that started by selling plates through their living room window and launched via Instagram with groceries bought using food benefits, the men have come a long way. Not only do they have multiple food trucks, a brick-and-mortar store, and over 150K Instagram followers, their impressive celeb clientele list is constantly growing (they’ve cooked for Snoop Dogg, Kendrick Lamar, Wiz Khalifa, the cast of “Barbershop 3”, 50 Cent and many others). Their goal is to inspire people from all walks of life to follow their passion no matter what the odds are and stay true to yourself. And following a year like 2020, for them, that message hits that much harder.  

With a foreword by Snoop Dogg, Jenkins and Smith have returned with a new cookbook, Trap Kitchen: Mac N’ All Over The World. The cookbook spills the secrets on their most notorious dish, the Trap Mac n’ Cheese, and features fifty recipes with flavors of regions from around the world. 

Keep reading for, an excerpt from the book, featuring their savory General Tso Mac N Cheese recipe. 



• 2 cups milk

• 8 ounces cream cheese, cut into 1-inch cubes

• 3 tablespoons butter

• 1 teaspoon salt

• 1 teaspoon garlic powder

• 12 ounces grated or shredded cheese


Warm the milk in a saucepan over medium heat, then add the cream cheese cubes and whisk till smooth. Next, add the butter, salt, and garlic powder and put it on low to medium heat. Once the mixture comes to a simmer, drop the heat back to low and add in the grated cheese. Let it sit about 3-5 minutes until it’s slightly melted and whisk like crazy until it’s smooth, or just get yourself a stick blender. Cook until the mixture is a thick sauce. Make sure you keep the heat on low, because if you turn the heat up too high, it’ll mess up your cheese.




• 1 pound orzo, cooked


• 1 pound boneless chicken breasts

• Salt and pepper to taste

• 2 eggs, beaten

• 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons cornstarch, divided

• 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, or as needed, divided

• 2 green onions, thinly sliced, white and green parts, divided

• 2 cloves garlic, minced

• 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger

General Tso Sauce

• 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth

• 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce

• 2 tablespoon hoisin sauce

• 1 tablespoon rice vinegar

• 1 tablespoon brown sugar

• 2 dried red chili peppers, whole, or 1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes

• 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil


Cut chicken breasts into 1-inch cubes. Season with salt and pepper and toss first with egg and then with cornstarch. Cook over medium-high heat with 2 tablespoons oil until crisp and cooked through, 5-6 minutes. Remove from the pan and set aside.

For the sauce, combine all ingredients in a small bowl and whisk together.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a small pan over medium heat. Add the whites of the green onion, garlic, and ginger and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in sauce ingredients and simmer 2-3 minutes or until thickened. Coat the chicken with the sauce.

Use the flourless cheese sauce method for sauce, adding mild cheddar. Stir in the cooked orzo. Arrange the chicken over the top and garnish it with the scallion greens.