Acting may be Jennifer Garner’s passion, but good food is a close second. It’s why she started her organic snack company, Once Upon a Farm, and why you’ll occasionally catch her in the kitchen on Instagram filming her “Pretend Cooking Show,” as she calls it. Day-to-day, though, Garner leads a pretty busy life, which keeps her regular breakfasts, lunches, and dinners simple and fresh. In a new “What I Eat in a Day” video with Harper’s Bazaar, Garner broke down her diet and what meals she currently has on rotation.
She eats the same breakfast every morning.
“My regular breakfast is coffee and more coffee,” Garner joked. She takes it black but said she’ll occasionally splurge for an almond milk cappuccino. As for what she eats in the morning, The Last Thing He Told Me star whips up a full-fat yogurt parfait with nuts and berries—her current breakfast fixation, which she said changes every few years.
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Her favorite mid-day snack is a classic.
Of course, Garner couldn’t help but tout Once Upon a Farm as a go-to quick bite. But the real favorite snack for the star is an apple with peanut butter—but the apple has to be sliced. “I always have an apple,” she said. “I prefer to have it cut up. Otherwise, if you have lipstick on, it’s a disaster. So I cut it up, and I put it back together like a puzzle, and I stick it in my bag and have it later.”
Lunch is always a big seasonal salad.
Who doesn’t love a good salad? Her greens of choice are arugula and a mix of darker leaves, paired with whatever is currently fresh from her (very impressive) garden—be it broccoli, carrot, cauliflower, green beans, or sugar snap peas. Cheese, nuts, sweet potatoes, and “maybe a little bit of brown rice,” she said, go on top.
For dinner, she has “mom food.”
It’s not clear exactly what she meant by it, but Garner said she often has “mom food” for dinner. “I do not consider myself a good cook or baker, and I do not have the gift of making anything cute,” she added. “But I do like to cook and bake for people I love. It’s the gift of being a mom, you get to train your kids’ palates.”
With that being said, Garner “leans heavily” on Barefoot Contessa, a.k.a. Ina Garten, for recipes—especially when she’s making things like roasted veggies, bread, and salmon. “Anything I do well is because of Ina,” Garner beamed.
She’s “reexamining” her relationship with alcohol.
Especially post-pandemic, when most people were “enjoying a little more than usual,” as Garner put it, the actress is making a conscious effort to take a step back from her go-to single glass of wine with dinner. “I think the more that comes out about alcohol, the more I’m just reexamining my own relationship with alcohol,” she said. “And the older I get, the more I want to protect my brain.”
(Recent studies have found that even moderate drinking can pose risks to long-term health, and a 2022 study found that no amount of alcohol is good for your heart—so she might be on to something.)
She dislikes this salty favorite.
The one food she dislikes, according to the 51-year-old star, is brine-y olives of any kind. “Please don’t bring them over. Don’t put them in my fridge. I’m not interested,” she laughed.
She appreciates a sweet treat.
She is, however, always interested in ice cream covered in her very own homemade chocolate “magic” shell. “When you make it yourself, you can titrate how much milk chocolate you want versus dark chocolate. I can’t handle it,” she said. “If it’s in my house, I’m having a bowl of ice cream with magic shell.”
We’ve got to find this homemade recipe!
Kayla Blanton is a freelance writer who reports on all things health and nutrition for Men’s Health, Women’s Health, and Prevention. Her hobbies include perpetual coffee sipping and pretending to be a Chopped contestant while cooking.