This Morning presenter Holly Willoughby, 35, is a busy bee, with successful careers in presenting, fashion design, modelling and writing under her belt. Working in showbiz since 14 years old, she's a pro in front of the camera, known for her charming, bubbly and down-to-earth personality. Appearing in shows as varied as CD:UK, Dancing on Ice, Celebrity Juice, The Voice UK, and the more recent Surprise, Surprise, when she isn't in front of the camera she's writing children's and parenting books including her new release, 'Truly Happy Baby: It Worked For Me'.
Holly lives in London with her husband, TV producer Dan Baldwin, and children, Harry, seven, Belle, five, and Chester, 21 months. A mum and family woman at heart, she loves nothing more than spending time with her three children and friends – particularly her two favourite co-hosts, Fearne Cotton and Phillip Schofield.
We talked to the doting mum about family food, her most adventurous foodie experiments and what treats she just couldn't live without.
What’s on your daily menu?
Yogurt, granola and berries for breakfast. I’m ravenous after filming so lunch is a jacket potato with beans, cottage cheese and salad, then for dinner I love cooking dig-in dishes like shepherd’s pie.
What do you cook for your kids?
I want to fill them with goodness and make sure they don’t snack between meals. I like them to try new things, like crab and cockles. But I love a processed cheese slice myself, so I can’t be that militant about nutrition.
Spaghetti Bolognese. My mum, Lynn, would zap the mince in the microwave, pour in tinned tomatoes and purée, then zap it again. There weren’t even any onions! But I still pine for it.
Your first dining-out memory?
Al Duomo, a Brighton pizzeria with an open-fire oven. The ceiling had decorative circles which my dad, Terry, said were old pizzas that had been tossed in the air and got stuck. I believed him for years!
Nobu. It's yellowtail sashimi with jalapeño is my favourite. I often take Phil [Schofield] there – he loves soft-shell crab and good margaritas. I’m also a fan of rotisserie chicken with chips, coleslaw or corn on the cob from [gourmet fast food chain] Chicken Shop – delicious!
Worst-ever food experience?
A guy who lived off roadkill came onto This Morning with food he’d found on the side of the road. Phil tried fox and said, ‘It tastes like a fox smells’. I abstained – I’m not as adventurous.
Would you say you’re a fussy eater?
I like mussels but can’t look at them so I’m better ordering them at night. I can’t eat smoked salmon unless it’s with eggs. I like tomatoes but not cherry tomatoes.
Any pregnancy cravings?
My sweet tooth was out of control. Harry was made of cupcakes and with Belle, it was worse. I’d just eat the buttercream, chuck the sponge and get another one!
Fave hangover cure?
Marmite on toast, then macaroni cheese. Strong flavours. It’s all about carbs – you have to feed your way through the day.
Your last-supper menu?
A ’70s prawn cocktail, roast chicken and beef with Yorkshire pudding and all the trimmings, then Belgian Chocolate Häagen-Dazs with melted chocolate.
Quick weekday dinner?
Carbonara. Just mix pasta, egg yolk, Parmesan, pepper and ham – done!
Bought into any recent food fads?
Quinoa. I make a toasted quinoa flake granola with dates. But I don’t like kale. Anything prickly in your mouth is not fun.
Do you think you eat well overall?
I think if you make it from scratch, it’s good food. As long as you’re not cooking with tons of cream... but every so often is fine. And Sundays don’t count!
Dream dinner party guests?
Marilyn Monroe – I want to know what her life was really like; Kate Middleton – she’s the real-life Cinderella; and Henry VIII, who’d probably try to cop off with Kate!
Ta da!! It’s here... the cover for my new book Truly Happy Baby… It Worked For Me, featuring my gorgeous niece Darcy! I can’t wait to share it with you and hope it gives you a helping hand through your baby’s first year… one of the most important and special times in your life. It’s out in June and available to pre-order now... link in my bio #trulyhappybaby
Holly’s new book, Truly Happy Baby: It Worked For Me, published by Harper Thorsons, is out now in selected Asda stores.