There are people who eat simply because they're hungry, never really giving much thought to what they're eating. Marie Claire cover star Blake Lively is not one of those people. She loves to cook—so much so she's taken classes at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris and has invited chefs to her home to help her hone her skills. One glance at her Instagram shows that she loves a mug of ultra-rich hot cocoa just as much as a head-turning pair of Louboutins or a braid that'd make Rapunzel jealous.
Even the actress's favorite clothes reflect this—remember when she told Vogue the best part of her day was her heels, which looked like they were studded with Everlasting Gobstoppers? Or that crystal-covered, cupcake-shaped handbag she 'grammed?
Naturally, this made us wonder what she eats in a typical day, and whether what's on her Instagram in any way reflects what she has IRL. Her latest feature in our July issue had some insights—and made us want to try her mac & cheese hack ASAP.
She Makes Her Own McMuffins.
Lively can skip the drive-thru; McD's doesn't serve sriracha mayo, anyway, which turns out to be the secret ingredient in her homemade breakfast sandwiches. That and extra-sharp cheddar, it seems.
If she's going out to brunch, she'll order an eggs benedict, she told Vogue.
She Has No Problem with Carbs.
There are certain foods that are celebrity diet mainstays: Salads for lunch, lean meat and veggies for dinner, a handful of almonds as a mid-day snack. At the our cover shoot, Lively opted for a club sandwich and pot stickers, following it up later in the day with Nobu sushi and sweets from Thomas Keller's Bouchon Bakery.
There's One Pizza Shop She Loves Above All Others.
When it comes to scoring the best slice in New York, Lively will direct you to one place: Patsy's in East Harlem.
She Balances Eating What She Wants With Regular Workouts.
Filming The Shallows—a Jaws-meets-Cast Away-esque movie, where Lively plays a surfer who's attacked by a shark, gets stranded on the rocks, and must find a way to escape without becoming its lunch—started just 10 months after Lively gave birth to her daughter, James.
"I had to be in just a bikini. So for vanity's sake, that was an issue," she explained in our July cover interview. "They didn't hire a stunt double until the last two weeks of shooting. So everything I did—underwater stunts, flipping off of a buoy—it was incredibly physically and emotionally demanding."
To prepare for the role, she bumped up her workouts from once or twice a week to 5 to 6 days a week, her trainer, Don Saladino, told People. "We would do an upper body workout Monday, lower body Tuesday. Wednesday was a playful pool workout where she would do laps," he said. "Thursday was upper body, Friday lower body, and Saturday we were focusing on the accessory movers: the arms, the shoulders."
During that time, she also consulted with a nutritionist, and focused on eating four small meals a day, with a protein, vegetable and slow-burning carb in each one.
She's Got Serious Self-Control.
Just because Lively's Instagramming all kinds of decadent dishes doesn't necessarily mean she's eating every single crumb. "She orders five things to try, and she has the discipline to enjoy it and not devour the whole plate," friend and actress Salma Hayek told Marie Claire. "Me, I move behind her like a vacuum cleaner."
Her Mac & Cheese Hack Will Surprise You.
Considering those aforementioned cooking classes, you might think Lively's go-to macaroni and cheese recipe involves $40 worth of Gruyere, a whisk-until-your-arm-falls-off bechamel, and more. Nope. "All I've been eating is Kraft Mac & Cheese," she explained in our July issue. She doctors hers with a little cream cheese and a splash of cream—instead of milk—to make it extra rich and, well, creamy.
She's Not Rubbing Truffles on Her Nipples, Okay?
It's a question new parents often get: How do you avoid raising picky eaters? Instead of the canned, "I introduce them to new foods" spiel, Lively took an alternative route, joking that she "rubs truffles on [her] nipples every day" to ensure her daughter, James, would have an adventurous palate. After that one-liner made its rounds on the Internet, Lively included a hashtag on an Instagram post, just to reinforce that she was kidding, folks.
She Swears By This Butter Brand.
The founders of Georgetown Cupcake would be proud: Lively shares their love of baking with European-style butter—specifically Plugra—an obsession the actress has been passing on to her niece, apparently.
She's a Chocoholic.
When it comes to dessert, Lively goes all out. City Bakery makes her favorite hot chocolate—so rich it's practically cocoa syrup—but her all-time favorite treat is a chocolate soufflé. She's also been known to melt down a chocolate bar to drizzle atop a sundae ("Forget the fake syrupy stuff!" she told O, The Oprah Magazine.)
Lively's sweet tooth is so serious that she's joked it's a life goal to actually become chocolate one day; a comment that may confuse some, but to fellow food obsessives, we get it. Oh, do we get it.
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