Eva Longoria cooks three meals a day for her family, calls it therapeutic

I follow a handful of celebrities on Instagram, but I only pay attention to a few of them. Eva Longoria is one I actively follow. I’ve noticed much more food content lately. She really caught my attention over Christmas when she posted a video of her family making tamales. It was fun and the tamales looked delicious. In Eva’s interview with Women’s Health, it sheds some light into her food content on IG. Eva said she find cooking therapeutic. She cooks breakfast, lunch and dinner for her family each day. And some days, it’s just for her family because Eva sticks to an intermittent fasting schedule.

And then there’s her family—Santiago and her husband, José Bastón, and, on the day we’re talking, Eva’s mother, visiting from San Antonio, all of whom need to be fed. “I cook them breakfast, lunch, and dinner,” she says, as if it’s no big deal. “It’s therapeutic for me.”

An intermittent faster, Eva typically eats within an eight-hour window each day, usually 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. “Breakfast is black coffee,” she says, and after that comes her hour of exercise. “Then I make breakfast for my family.” It’s often egg whites and avocado or refried beans on flour tortillas (which she also makes from scratch). Sometimes she’ll have a bite of her son’s breakfast if it aligns with her fasting schedule—or, even if it doesn’t fall within her “eating hours,” bite into a bean taco, which she calls “the real breakfast of champions.” Lunch is typically protein—steak, fish, or chicken—and vegetables, and dinner is another version of that or a hearty soup, like Italian wedding or tortilla.

“I’ve been dabbling with more plant-based ingredients,” Eva says, and by that, she really means actual plants. “I grew up on a ranch where we ate what was on the land—when it was squash season, we ate squash for three months. It gave me such an appreciation for where food comes from: It comes from the ground. Beans are a big source of protein for us. I love making portobello tacos and jackfruit tacos, and cauliflower fried rice.”

Sugar? She doesn’t know her. “Olives, pretzels, popcorn, potato chips—that’s my jam,” Eva says. “I don’t like sweets or chocolate, and people hate me for it. Bread too—I hate bread. I’m never tempted by the bread basket.”

[From Women’s Health]

If you also follow Eva, you know that she dedicates much of her IG to workouts as well. Eva has become a fan of rebounding, workouts done on mini trampolines. Rebounding is also beneficial for mental health. Some therapists recommend it to patients. So much of Eva’s life is shifting to overall wellness, something that helped inspire her new iHeartMedia podcast, Connections with Eva Longoria. I cook breakfast, but mostly just on school days. And I cook dinners. But I am not one who finds cooking therapeutic. I don’t mind doing it, but I don’t get that Zen feeling that some people do when they get in the kitchen. I get that once the food is at the table. More power to Eva, though, if she can find therapy in cooking food she can’t eat.

I’m interested in her comments about seasonal, plant-based cooking. First of all, I absolutely need to include more plant-based options in my diet. But Eva is talking about something Anthony Bourdain used to critique American cooking for frequently. We cook a dish because we want to, but we should plan our menus around what’s in season like Eva did growing up. To walk my comments above back a step, cooking isn’t necessarily therapeutic to me, but planning a meal is. Working around crop availability should be my new therapy. I also don’t hate Eva for not liking sweets, I envy her. I find savory cravings can be sated with less caloric options. I think it’s a fine line between bread and tortillas, though. I love both. And honestly, reading this made me hungry. But my real take-away from the article is that Eva is in a good place in her life professionally, personally, spiritually, and clearly health-wise. She’s worked hard to get there and I’m happy for her.

Her son Santiago is so adorable.

Photo credit: Instagram and Avalon Red

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34 Responses to “Eva Longoria cooks three meals a day for her family, calls it therapeutic”

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  1. Gil says:

    When I read the headline I was like “oh, that is quite nice, I kinda feel the same about cooking” then I read that she cooks for her family but doesn’t eat because she is fasting? Darn, how do you do that? I always want a taco of what I just cooked. I don’t think fasting and cooking are compatible activities.

    • Escargot says:

      It’s funny to read this because, although I’m not super fit like Eva, I also do three meals a day for my family nearly every day, and I almost never eat breakfast because I fast in the morning.
      Once you’re used to not eating in the morning it’s easy. And breakfast is all basic stuff like oatmeal, yogurt and fruit, or eggs and toast. Just easy and quick. But I wouldn’t be able to do the same for lunch and dinner, I’m hungry and ready to eat those meals!
      I never thought I’d relate to a celebrity so much lol.

      • Normades says:

        Same, I haven’t eaten breakfast in years but I always make sure the family gets a well rounded breakfast before their day. Nothing complicated, like you said oatmeal, fruit, eggs.
        Lunch everyone fends for themselves but we almost always have a big dinner which is mostly me but my husband is a great cook too.
        For me I consider it a luxury that I can cook from scratch for my family. I miss having friends over to cook for though…now that was a luxury!

      • Christine says:

        Same, I am never hungry first thing in the morning, I just want to be caffeinated, but my son needs to eat before school. He’s in middle school now, so cooking his breakfast means he talks to me while I am cooking, which is a huge bonus.

        He blabbed all through elementary, endlessly, but he’s started that tween into a teen transition. I would cook my own arm if it meant he would talk to me! Fortunately, he’s still happy with eggs and whatnot.

  2. Great duo says:

    She’s a hard no from me. That sound very bs. Lucky for rich people to have the luxury of cooking as therapy. Give me a break. Happy for y’all to go vegan. More meat for me. Yum! And actual scientists know super healthy. Unlike bs celebs

    • Escargot says:

      Um… lots of regular folks cook for their family every day, and enjoy it most of the time. I do it and I’m not any kind of a fancy person, I’m currently a stay at home mom in this phase of my life. My husband works a ton and I handle 90% of the meals.

      What do you do if not cook for your kids? Give them packaged meals multiple times a day?

    • iforget says:

      I cook three meals a day because I can’t afford the luxury of takeaways or prepared meals. It may not be pretty but it’s definitely therapeutic because I know I’m doing something kind for my body.

    • Christine says:

      It’s therapy for me. I feel like I’ve said this a million times, so long story, short, I bumbled into a psychiatrist in my 20s who thought Xanax was an appropriate reaction to normal feelings. I ended up addicted, and since then, chopping an onion, or whatever, has been my mindless moments of time where I just check in with myself. See also: Watching Ina’s show. She is very soothing.

      I’m not rich, and meal planning and preparations aren’t bs for celebrities.

  3. Christine23 says:

    I think a lot of people with disordered eating like to talk about food. I dont know, I just get a weird vibe. There is a subservient wifeyness to this as well as a restriction diet piece. Her son is adorable though.

    • Pi says:

      I do tend to skip meals to stay thin but I have noticed I do not get enough fiber. I am trying to eat 5 meals a day now. I would rather be healthy than skinny.
      Also, agreed. I do not cook every day. We eat leftovers multiple days.

      • Mary Tosti says:

        If I meal prep I do so to make sure we have left overs from some meals. I’d love to have that luxury of time to cook everyday (and enjoy it) but there aren’t enough hours in the day.

    • mel says:

      I am a nutritionist who primarily works with women, many of whom have a disordered relationship with food, and the red flags came up pretty fast for me in this post. There are subtle nuances, it reads as very ‘healthy’ and ‘wholesome’ (feeding family angle) but from the little I’ve seen here there are some potential issues.

      Also, please please please women be careful with intermittent fasting. 95% of the research is based on men and IF can result in a lot of hormonal dysregulation. Especially if you are middle aged and in the perimenopausal/menopausal stage in life.

      If you’re interested in IF please check out Stacy Sims and work with a nutritionist or MD who is experienced in IF.

      Lastly, there is nothing wrong with egg yolks!!! *rant over*

      • Normades says:

        Thanks I will check this out. I have read a lot of things tooting IF during perimenopause but I am always open to reading new studies.

        We live in Europe and eat dinner fairly late. Afterwards I don’t do a huge IF, I just have not eaten breakfast for so long that it does not appeal to me. It works for me so I don’t feel like fixing it. I have an early lunch which usually has an egg yolk in it somewhere!

    • Nicole says:

      I agree. I don’t understand how you cook for your family but don’t eat. I feel like that almost pushes on EDs to your kids. I don’t know.

  4. TIFFANY says:

    Eva wears her heart on her sleeve and if you are her friend, she will lay down in traffic for you.

    Is she perfect, no. But she tries. She has spoken about how fortunate she is in life and she looks for ways to pay if forward and kudos to her for that.

    She gets a lot of vitriol for someone who isn’t out here trying to make a mess of things.

    • Christine says:

      Yeah, this is my first time wading into any conversation involving Eva, and I’m grossed out by the comments. I’m sorry to those of you who know more about her, it must be infuriating.

  5. souperkay says:

    Intermittent fasting is just anorexia with extra steps. It’s disordered eating. Eva may be achieving performative thinness through forced starvation but it isn’t healthy.

    • Tanguerita says:

      absolutely. Just another form of dieting disguised as “healthy”.

    • Escargot says:

      That’s a very large blanket statement though.
      I do IF and I am not thin. Having a “stop” time after dinner keeps me from the nighttime mindless snacking that is bad for my health.
      Having a later “start” time mid morning gives me a 16 hour window in which I’m not eating. For me personally this is done to reduce inflammation in my body, as I have some physical issues that cannnot be healed but only managed by reducing inflammation.
      So for both reasons it’s a pretty healthy thing for me, and my body is healthier than it would be if I reduced inflammation by omitting a bunch of foods and obsessing about everything I ate. I tried that and it was defeating and awful.
      Anyway it’s just to show that there are more reasons than ultra thinness to have a reasonable fasting period in your day. I’m sure many people do IF in an unhealthy way or for unhealthy reasons though, I agree with you on that.

      • Normades says:

        I agree Escargot. It is good to turn it off and not be in eating mode all the time. When I eat too early or heavy I feel sluggish for the rest of the day. I walk 1/2 an hour a day but hate going to the gym so I don’t need to “feul up” like my kids do for a day of school and sports. Their energy/nutrition needs are not the same as mine.

    • OreoRocky says:

      Yes call a spade a spade! Just say I starve for a few hours a day so I can be thin. Not gonna lie, I have thought about it. Seems easier than calorie counting etc. BUT I feel like it’s not healthy.

  6. Twin Falls says:

    Even if I were a rich, occasionally working person who had the time to cook three meals a day and make things from scratch, I wouldn’t. I hate cooking (because that means also doing dishes which I also don’t enjoy) and thinking about what to feed everyone day in and day out is the bane of my existence.

    I cook dinner every night during the week, the other meals it’s more providing food options. We eat all different kinds of food but end up having many of the same meals over and over again because it’s so much easier to throw a familiar recipe together than work through a new one.

  7. Becks1 says:

    I joined TikTok last month lol and I follow her and I like seeing what she’s cooking. I def think she’s actually cooking and thinking about the meals etc, rather than some celebs who talk about it but you can tell they don’t know what they’re doing in a kitchen.

    I love cooking. I think its fun, and when you’re making a new recipe for the first time there’s always an element of surprise that goes with it – is this actually going to work? Is this actually going to taste good? And then yay, it does! or oops, it doesn’t, not really trying that one again.

  8. Bella says:

    I do breakfast on the weekends, I make lunch for my high school kids because 1. they oversleep every.single.day. and 2. mine are healthier, and Dinner every night except if I have a really taxing day at work – that’s usually pizza night.

    I really enjoy cooking, but I hate cleaning up. If they don’t clean the dishes and pots and pans? I don’t cook. There have been nights where the kids ate ramen noodles or Cheerios because, again, I’m not the maid.

    Yes, cooking is therapeutic for me as well.

    • myjobistoprincess says:

      I do the dinner cooking but then my hubby does the kitchen cleaning eveyr night. I cant and dont want to do eveyrthing. I the morning I empty the dishwasher so that during the day everyone can put their own dirty dishes in the dishwasher.

  9. lucy2 says:

    I’m jealous she doesn’t like sweets or bread.
    I don’t enjoy cooking AT ALL, so I can’t imagine doing 3 meals a day, every day, but if she enjoys it, great. They really photoshopped her face on the cover though, to the point she’s not recognizable.

    • Fleur says:

      It’s funny, I love desserts and would eat like a snickers bar (or two) every day if I could! My boyfriend and most of our friends are super apathetic to dessert and can always go without!

      That said, reading her food regime, (fasting hours, egg whites, a bite of her sons food), she’s probably trained herself not to like or eat bread or sweets. It’s probably more her psychological aversion cultivated over decades.

      • Jules says:

        I don’t know why people want to frame her as disorderd. She is also a petite women…like short! Not only that before acting I’m pretty sure she was a body builder(?) She definitely studied nutrition at university in Texas and at the very least she is not combining her way of eating with some extreme exercise. Lastly, my mom is Latina and ate more closely to her culture growing (harder to get us all to do it) and she does not like sweets naturally either.

        It can be very cultural. We definitely have sweets in Latin America but they’re different from American candies and people lean toward savory meals and snacks more often. I’ve seen it with my mom who won’t have cake or a Snickers or anything like that but she loves sardines! And Chex mix (anything ‘crunchy’). I will say that Coca-Cola has infiltrated the WORLD and we do tend to drink quite a bit of soft drinks, but since Eva studied and lived fitness I can see her having a very healthy diet.

        Haven’t we all known someone who lived in the fitness world or was a competitive athlete and had these sorts of habits as it is?

  10. Usedtobehappy21 says:

    I haven’t been able to stand her since reading an article years and years ago when Desperate Housewives was new and she was bragging that the make up people on the show were so amazed because she needed so much less make up than the other women. She framed it in a way that wasn’t intentionally throwing shade but was definitely saying she was more naturally attractive. At least that’s how I took it. And maybe she didn’t mean that at all but every time I see her, that’s what I think.

  11. DiegoInSF says:

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE Eva, I also actively follow her and I really want to buy a trampoline to workout as she has inspired me.
    She will be hosting a food series on CNN called Searching for Mexico and I’m so excited!

  12. Myjobistoprincess says:

    I never cook 3 times a day. I do lunches or brunches during the weekends and all dinners. I might assemble breakfast for the kids like toast and butter or granola and yogourt or cereals and milk on a school day, but I dont cook breakfast. Too hectic. However, I have a found a new found love from cookin gfrom scratch thanks to the pandemic. I make my own bread now, my own pasta, soups, stews, braises, my own cookies, my carrot cakes, oreo cakes, strawberry shortcakes, chocolate cakes (that’s all the cakes you really need), my spaghetti sauce, my pizza dough/pizza sauce, cinnamon buns, etc etc etc. I’m coming out so much more education on food from scratch! I feel this knowledge is so valuable – I just never thought it was this important. It’s so much fun and therapeutic. FYI I made whole wheat pasta yesterday – I took that time and made that for my family instead of spending that much time swiping on my phone. I’m so proud of myself. I feel like a champion.

    • Christine says:

      You are a champion! I’ve been cooking for years, at this point, and I’m not remotely competent to make pasta!

  13. Rosa says:

    IF is healthy! I agree with Eva – As a woman I love being in the kitchen cooking for my family. Way better than working outside of the home. Women need to delay motherhood like I did. I only have one child and I waited until I was 34 to have him. I’m not privileged, I was responsible and waited until I was in the right relationship and financially stable. Now I don’t have to work a shitty job and I love my life.

  14. KrystinaJ says:

    I love cooking, so I definitely understand that it can be therapeutic.
    I also LOVED her talking about hating sugar and getting flak for it. I’ve loathed most sweet things my whole life. I think chocolate is gross, lol.