Drew Barrymore Jokes It Takes 'Time' and 'Perseverance' To Get Kids To Love Healthy Food

The actor and host of the Drew Barrymore Show gets real about getting her daughters to eat healthy and her love for a meatless alternative.

Drew Barrymore
Photo: Quorn

Drew Barrymore is no stranger to the challenges that can come with getting kids to expand their palate. Lke all parents, she has dealt with bouts of pickiness and too many junk food cravings when it comes to her two daughters—Olive, 9, and Frankie, 8.

"Kids go through phases," she says. "You get so excited because you're like, 'Oh my god, they love something; we're going to eat this every day,' and then in a few weeks, they are like, 'I changed my mind, I don't like that,' and you're like, 'Nooo!'"

To prevent tantrums, she says there have been times she's gone for whatever her girls preferred. "I think I was in the zone of so trying to avoid the meltdown and blow-up behavior, I would give them whatever they want, just to get them to eat," says the actor and Rebel Homemaker author.

Plus, Barrymore is busy: she's been hosting her CBS talk show, the Drew Barrymore Show, and running her new magazine, Drew. She doesn't always get to do home-cooked dinners the way she used to, she says (we get it!), and is getting a little help by hopping on the meatless food trend.

The star is the chief mom officer of Quorn, a meatless food brand that she says she feels good about giving to her kids. The company's products are made with Quorn mycoprotein, a fiber-rich soy-free protein with no cholesterol that is low in saturated fat, according to the brand's website.

"I'm just also excited to be working with a brand that takes less water, less carbon, and is better for the environment," says Barrymore, who adds she can't get enough of the meatless chicken nuggets. (Research shows plant-based food reduces carbon emissions and waste byproducts that end up in the ocean.)

Meatless products also work well for the actor's diet. Barrymore was raised vegetarian but switched it up when she was about 26 years old. She's now a flexitarian—aka she's mainly plant-based with the occasional inclusion of meat. (She stopped eating chicken more than a decade ago after reading Jonathan Safran Foer's Eating Animals, which discusses factory farming).

But getting her kids to eat and love vegetables isn't always easy. "They're finally on spinach, which is a miracle," says Barrymore, who is also working with World Central Kitchen, which provides meals during humanitarian, climate, and community crises.

This mom of two isn't stressing. She's just trying to strike a balance and get her girls to choose healthy more often. What does that mean? "Time, perseverance, not giving up," she jokes. "Not every day is the same...sometimes I'm cooking them salmon and sometimes we're eating at their favorite food [place], the gas station."

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