Emmy-winning TV host and New York Times bestselling author Daphne Oz joins Zibby to discuss her new cookbook, Eat Your Heart Out, which took five years to complete. The two talk about why Daphne wanted to create recipes without gluten or refined sugar that are still enjoyable to eat and she even shares some of her favorites. Zibby and Daphne also connect over their fashion choices, their relationships with WW past and present, and their desire to eat cleaner without sacrificing the adventures food can offer. Check out Daphne’s website here, which is one of Zibby’s favorite places to shop!


Zibby Owens: Welcome, Daphne. Thank you so much for coming on “Moms Don’t Have Time to Read Books” to discuss Eat Your Heart Out: All-Fun, No-Fuss Food to Celebrate Eating Clean.

Daphne Oz: Thank you for having me. I’m thrilled to be here.

Zibby: Daphne, I’m glad that you joined. I was early to this Zoom, and so I had a chance to start shopping on your website. I’m like, she better log on soon because I’ve already bought, allegedly, the comfiest sweatpants, the personalized tote raffia whatever for my mom for Mother’s Day, which is so cute. This is very destructive.

Daphne: I know. It would be destructive if those two things weren’t some absolutely critical pieces to belong in your life. I literally just took those sweatpants off because I was like, I’m going on Zibby’s podcast. I better put some real pants on. When I tell you I have them in every color — I wear them constantly. They are these Leallo sweatpants, random brand I found over the summer a couple years ago. They just have the best cut. They’re a jogger cut, but they’re light enough. They’re still flattering, and drawstring. Moms love a high waist and pants that won’t fall down when you’re bending over to get your kids a hundred times a day. Let me put you onto these sweatpants.

Zibby: I’m on. I already bought them in navy. I sat there for five minutes being like, navy, ooh, pink could be kind of fun. I don’t have any pink sweatpants, but would those look good? Then I was like, what am I doing?

Daphne: I literally was just buying the cream ones over and over and over again because I loved them so much. Pick your color. I love you. Thank you for doing that.

Zibby: I’m going back. You have great picks for all occasions. Wait, I want to talk about your cookbook, but I also want to talk about your empire-ish, this whole thing you’ve built with recommendations and content and everything. How did that all bubble up? Has it been in tandem with all the books and the shows and everything? Did you always know you wanted a destination for everything? Tell me about that.

Daphne: Look, I do think, just as you’re speaking so generously and kindly — thank you so much. Your podcast aptly references the fact that moms have no time. I do think a destination is always going to be better because it just simplifies the process of, I like what I’m seeing. Help me figure out how to create some of that in my life. That said, I will say, I started in media. I started at a show called The Chew when I was twenty-four, twenty-five. At that time, it was very much at the dawn of social media. I very much learned about media when it was still TV and movies. That was where you really consumed content. When that was the case, even in daytime, which I feel so lucky to have been a part of because you really get to be friends with your audience in a way that’s so unique and so comfortable and consistent in a way that’s so special, but at that time, that was really where you got to consume the content. There wasn’t really a lot around that. Social media has blossomed in this way where now if you like and trust the way that I cook and hang out in the kitchen, then you’re going to follow me into my closet. You’re going to follow me into my bedroom where I’m putting on my makeup and doing my skin care and whatever.

I think that that 360 view of people that you appreciate in one vertical is something kind of novel about the way that social media has blossomed, and the demand for constant content as a result of it. I definitely wasn’t like, here’s the architecture. Here’s what we’re going to do. It was really more just a genuine — people started asking me really organically to share a lot about the fashion choices I was making and the beauty choices I was making, fashion primarily because I think seeing me get dressed as a size 8/10 not a 2/4, the classic look of what you’ve been used to seeing on TV, I think was really redeeming for people. They were like, I’m seeing how this looks on your body. That’s probably what it would look like on mine. Let me in on what you’re looking for when you’re buying or where you’re shopping, things of that nature. Then I have four kids, so I share a lot about my daily life and my parenting and the choices that I make for my own family. I think it’s really wonderful and beautiful to be able to have that kind of varied dialogue and depth of relationship with people that you’re not having a chance to meet in person, but you have this wonderful friendship connection by virtue of how much you’re giving and taking on the platforms.

Zibby: I love that. That is so great. I recommend books. That’s my thing, obviously, as you know. I had this crazy experience — this is totally off topic; we are going to talk about your book now — where I went to Target with my mom to pick up some odds and ends when I was visiting her in Arizona. I found these boots. I couldn’t tell if they were ugly or cute because I’m not the most fashionista-forward anything. I bought them. I put them on. I took a picture. I put it on Instagram. I was like, “Do you guys think these are cute or ugly?” All these people went and bought them. I was like, that’s amazing.

Daphne: Wait, I love that. First of all, because they know and love you, they’re like, if Zibby’s wearing this, it must be amazing. I have to go get it. Also, Target is Mecca. I really appreciate that, too, because there are those moments where you’re like, I think this could be cute, but maybe on someone else. Does it work for me? Let me get some weigh-in. It’s good. I hope you bought them. I hope they’re not sold out now. You can’t get them anymore.

Zibby: No, I bought them. I wore them all winter. I was like, wow, if you guys like them, then I’m in. I was literally walking my daughter to drop-off this morning. This woman in front of me was wearing this out-of-a-magazine outfit with this bright-red, furry whatever with tan bottoms and then these bright-red shoes from Roger Vivier or something. I said to my daughter, I was like, “Wow, look at her. That is quite an outfit. It looks like she should be in a magazine.” She’s like, “Mom, I don’t think that would look so good on you.”

Daphne: You’re like, I know.

Zibby: I know. I wasn’t going to wear them. I was just admiring that somebody’s that —

Daphne: — I think it’s so interesting that you don’t think of yourself as a fashionista because clearly, you’re taking note. Clearly, you are paying to and intrigued by — I think you should push the boundaries. I think you should try a red, gorgeous top and Roger Vivier flats. See what happens.

Zibby: Okay. I’m more constrained by the —

Daphne: — Needing to go places fast.

Zibby: Yeah, and just all the pieces of me that need covering at all times, the different shapes I need to make sure I’m ensconced in to look my best.

Daphne: By the way, that is — then we’ll get off the topic of fashion, which was never our topic to begin with. That’s exactly why I think fashion, it needs to pay attention to exactly what you’re describing because I feel the same way. I want clothes that support me. I don’t look good if I just put on a bag. I can’t do shapelessness. I know the features that I like to accentuate. I know the places I want to have a really beautiful, feminine silhouette and how to get there. I haven’t found a brand that really consistently does that. I’m intrigued by the fact that you would be more fashion-forward save for the fact that you want some structure and coverage in places that it’s important to have those things. I’m intrigued by this. I will be mulling on this.

Zibby: I feel like Shoshanna brand is very flattering. Have you —

Daphne: — I do. I love her stuff. I love Shoshanna. Actually, she’s a friend. I like very much what she does, absolutely.

Zibby: Okay, cookbook.

Daphne: What are we talking about today?

Zibby: You have a new cookbook out, Daphne. Very exciting. Congratulations.

Daphne: Thank you so much. Thank you. Eat Your Heart Out.

Zibby: Eat Your Heart Out, how did you come up with all of these different recipes? Do you make these yourself? Do you make the recipes? How often are you cooking? Tell me all about this, everything, start to finish.

Daphne: I don’t know if people fully understand the process of writing a cookbook because why would you? This book took me almost five years to put together. It’s crazy. You end up writing these recipes, testing these recipes over years and years and years and in this case, for those last five years because I really wanted it to be something that could be craveably clean. This book is a hundred and fifty recipes free from gluten, free from refined sugar. It actually details and outlines the five-day reset that I do, five days on, two days off, as part of just wanting to feel confident in my skin, get back in shape. I do it after babies. I do it after the holidays, even just for a week or two to reset healthy habits. That’s why the only simple rules of the book are no gluten and no refined sugar. I was finding when I felt like I was no longer making conscientious choices, I was making convenience choices or habit choices, addictive choices, it was around gluten and sugar. I’m not a dietician. This is not some theory of that nature. It is really just personal experience. These are the two things that I have trouble not getting addicted to. When I need a reset, these are the things I need to shy away from. The five days on and two days off piece was fully me. People who follow me on Instagram or TikTok or whatever know how I eat, and see me on TV. I’m all about delicious food. First and foremost, that has to be the case. I adventure in life and explore life and feel the tactile-ness of life through food. I was not willing to give that up, even in an effort to get feeling good in my skin again and feeling like I fit in my clothes again.

I feel like anybody can do anything for five days. Having those two days off really gives you that break. It’s a mental break that you need so you never feel like you’re giving up experiences you want or can’t go out to dinner and have a gorgeous meal and eat dessert and all the rest. It allows it to be really sustainable too. After childbirth, I’ll do this for a couple months on end, five days on, two days off. After the holidays, I’ll do it for a week or two just to get back to my good healthy habits. I lived in it for those last five years because I wanted to really make sure they would be craveably clean recipes I would want to return to over and over again but also practical enough that busy people could really make them happen. That was really a powerfully motivating feature of this book, was, yes, creating a reset for people who love to eat like me, but also to make healthy living feel less like work. I think a lot of the time we fall into this, it’s all or nothing. Either you have to give up everything or you might as well not do it at all. I really feel like humans don’t stick with anything like that. It has to be easy. It has to be fun. It also has to be something that you feel like you’re getting more than you’re giving up. With that in mind, I really wanted it to be like, are there ways you can make these recipes totally personalized and make them your own and go over the top? For sure. What’s going on with me now? You sent me your sneeze virtually.

Zibby: Sorry, I’m giving you allergies across the Zoom waves here.

Daphne: Do you know what’s weird? I’ve never had allergies in my life. In the last two years, all of a sudden out of nowhere, for one week a year, I’ll all of a sudden have crazy allergies. All to say I wanted to make it so that — these recipes are supposed to be confidence-boosting. They’re supposed to get you in the kitchen with something delicious and celebratory and healthy and nourishing and give you a starter package to then grow and build from and personalize and make your own. That piece of it is hopefully to get people on board with the idea that this is not off limits. This is not something that’s going to feel like another job. This is just a way for you to feel how good it feels to give your body clean fuel and feel great in your skin and feel like you’re doing something really good for yourself. I know as a mom, escaping into the world of books and finding those places where you’re feeding yourself something for pleasure, pleasure as a woman and as a mom, and continuing to grow and continuing to learn, that is something so powerful and fundamental to me. I think food is very common in that way. It’s giving yourself this priority and taking good care of yourself. That filters into the rest of your life. I’ve seen that to be so true.

Zibby: I love that. I love that attitude and framework. So many healthy eating plans point you in one direction without that recognition. What about the fact that when I take a bite of whatever, I get so much pleasure from that bite? Sometimes I’m like, maybe I get more pleasure out of food than other people.

Daphne: That’s how I feel.

Zibby: I’m like, oh, this is so good.

Daphne: You’re exactly the person like me that I was writing this book for. I love going to farmers markets. I will travel just to see ugly lemons that taste better than other lemons. I don’t want to rob myself of that memory bank of wonderful food experiences. I knew there had to be a way that people like us could still have that priority around delicious eating and still fit in our clothes. We should be allowed to do both of those things.

Zibby: I love that. Thank you. As we’re recording this, Passover recently ended. You have to cut out whole groups of food. I’m like, maybe I should just make this my thing. You can eat sweet potatoes and all those yummy things. You’re just not eating baked goods. I’m like, but maybe one or two days a week. Then I’m like, okay, she’s already figured this whole system out.

Daphne: I don’t think it’s anything revolutionary in that way of — that eighty/twenty rule has been circulating around for a long time because there is real value in giving yourself a break, not just from a mental standpoint of, let me get my head around making great choices these five days of the week, and then having the freedom to eat whatever I want on these other two days. Usually for me, that’s the weekend. What I hoped was really going to be novel about this book is — people know how I love to eat “normally” and the way that I put a preference on food and how I like to travel on my plate and bringing in some of those exotic inputs or some of the heritage that I have and some of the ways that I and things of that nature and really simplifying it and giving you a way to travel without ever leaving home and do it in a nourishing way that still doesn’t sacrifice the pleasure component. I am very much an and-not-or person. I want wellness and pleasure in every bite. If it was just pure wellness, great. Go suck down some psyllium husks and leave me alone. That’s not what this is. I appreciate that I feel like I’ve found my kindred spirit in that way.

Zibby: Seriously. I am a hundred percent your target audience. It’s a great fit. What did you make for breakfast this morning? Do you always pick from this? Do you eat on the go? Is it too early there?

Daphne: No, it’s nine thirty here, but I haven’t actually had breakfast yet. I am slugging down my americano. When I’m really on the run, I’ll grab a piece of gluten-free bread with a slick of almond butter. My choice for breakfast, things that I love to eat is a loaded scramble with tons of green veggies. There’s a recipe in the book, my spicy broccoli and feta scramble — I say my, but my husband invented it. I’ve just taken it on as my own.

Zibby: All good.

Daphne: It’s my favorite. He was crazy. It was almost like he put a Greek salad in an omelet. I was like, this is the most delicious thing. Well, broccoli’s different. He does broccoli, pepperoncini peppers, bell peppers sometimes. He’ll throw in some other spicy peppers if we have them around, feta cheese and dill, and scramble it in with this gorgeous egg mix. I think getting veggies at breakfast, and eggs, is what really fills me up and keeps me going. I also recognize people want just a carb-y delicious thing sometimes. The banana pumpkin muffins in the book are one of my absolute favorites. They are the lovechild of pumpkin pie and banana bread. Imagine that wonderful density and moistness of pumpkin pie. The muffin doesn’t crumble and fall apart. I put pumpkin in the mix, obviously, but then tender and light with oat flour and almond flour. It’s just delightful. It’s such a yummy blend. There’s magic pancakes, which are literally mashed banana, oatmeal, yogurt, and eggs. My kids devour those. There’s a lot. There’s a hummus bowl. I know, blowing minds, savory breakfast. Those are examples, all of them, of — the baked goods take about ten minutes to prep and then half an hour to cook. The scrambled things and the toast, obviously, things like that are sub-five minutes. The chopping, it depends how long it take you to cut things. I chop pretty quickly. I also like to chop a lot of things in advance like an omelet bar. You can just scoop things into the scramble and be done. I, unfortunately, have never been someone who could really get by on the intermittent fasting thing. I really need breakfast. I will have something of those selections today after we chat.

Zibby: I have failed intermittent fasting many times. I’m like, this is not working for me. I did read some article this week somewhere, in The Times or The Journal or something, about how maybe the benefits have been completely overstated for intermittent fasting. I was like, aha.

Daphne: Interesting. Nutrition and dialogue around what’s good, what’s bad, what’s in, what’s out changes all the time, which I think is part of what feels so overwhelming when people do set out to create a healthy lifestyle for themselves. They’re like, where do I even start? It feels like everything’s conflicting. Everybody has their own special thing, this, that, the other. One size does not fit all. That’s why I think some people have seen crazy, amazing success from intermittent fasting. I know for my own self it really sets me up in a bad way. Part of why I wanted, in Eat Your Heart Out, to have “rules” — again, I very much am clear these are specific rules to me, but I have found that they are very widespread in that gluten and sugar can be very habit-forming and also very delicious and very easy to find. Therefore, they are things that oftentimes trip a lot of people up.

By simplifying those rules — on these five days on, you’re not having gluten. You’re not having refined sugar. I limit my dairy. Then I take the weekends off. Those are the four rules to keep in mind. By simplifying them, you don’t have to think about them all the time. I really feel like nothing ruins my joy in food faster than making it math, making it something where I have to think about it all the time and consciously make the choice all the time because I want to be able to relax and enjoy. When the rules are very simple, I find that I actually am able to focus much more on the abundance, on everything that is in play, everything that I can choose from as opposed to cataloguing going through all the things and wondering if something’s inbounds or out-of-bounds. I’ve found that to be super effective. It doesn’t surprise me. I think there will always be conflicts around what works for some people and what works for others because we are all very unique.

Zibby: Very true, yes. Oh, my gosh, I counted points for seven years or something in a former life when I was much younger.

Daphne: It’s interesting. I’m assuming you’re referencing WW. I’m an ambassador for them and have been for the last two and a half years. I am actually putting out sometime this week, a full grid of the point values of every recipe in Each Your Heart Out because I have a lot of people who were asking for that. I’m so glad to be able to do that because a lot of these recipes were exactly what I’ve been eating doing WW. Look, they’re both tools that you use to, again, keep yourself accountable and keep yourself feeling supported. The community in WW, I find, is out-of-control wonderful. Again, more information. I’m a nerd. I like information. I feel safer and more protected and like I have multiple layers of security and safety net when I have more information. There are tools that I use in tandem. So many of these recipes are really great if you are counting WW points.

Zibby: I was actually a leader, I’ll have you know.

Daphne: By the way, your brilliant way of finding motivation I can totally see working in that way. I love it.

Zibby: I was so on the bandwagon. Everyone I knew was losing weight for a while. It was amazing.

Daphne: The nerd in me was so compelled to sign up to WW largely because of that. I was like, millions of people have found the system works because it’s science-based. It’s not gimmick. I love to hear that.

Zibby: So funny. Tell me about your reading life. What do you like to read?

Daphne: This is part of why I was so excited to talk to you. My children are eight, six, four, and two. For the longest time, I literally did not feel like I cracked a novel or a book for pleasure reading. Even before kids, I feel like in college, you’re all about work and party. You’re not pleasure reading. I wish I had taken advantage of the time I had then. Then you get out of college. You’re full into career mode and then kids. I just feel like I lost track of the time to really make that a preference. I’m tempted to go get it from my bedside table because it’s hilarious. My dog got a hold of — I’m reading the series that TikTok recommended to me called — .

Zibby: — That’s okay.

Daphne: A Court of Thorns and Roses. ACOTR is what people call it. I’m in the second one now. It is so good. I love fantasy. I love created worlds. I loved Harry Potter. I love sci-fi. I love Dune. I love all those things. There is something wonderful about this book. I’m really enjoying it. I read ten minutes a night, not a lot, but it relaxes me. I’m so grateful to get to find that again in my life. I’m so curious what your recommendations would be and how you find time for it. It’s crazy how much your day goes flying by and how much I was craving — I listen to a lot of books on Audible. That’s really where I read my nonfiction books. It’s crazy how much I was craving not just creative, purely pleasure experience of reading, but also, new learning. I really was hungry to be shared with and to have my cup filled up again. I really happy to get to find that habit back.

Zibby: It’s true. I feel like especially when you’re in it with the kids, your brain can sort of atrophy a little bit because you’re so focused. My kids are a little older now. I have twins who are almost fifteen. Then I have eight and seven behind me, this little guy. I love finding time in the stolen moments of the day. Sometimes I am just walking from one kid to another or I have to run to a doctor’s appointment or I’m waiting. I’m always like, am I using this time? Could I use this time differently? Do I really want to spend twenty minutes on Instagram now or — sometimes I do. I do have my alert every day. When I’ve reached an hour on Instagram, it’s time to get off, or at least I know.

Daphne: Very good. I hope you watched my cooking video first before you jumped off.

Zibby: Also, like you, at night, every night before I go to bed.

Daphne: I find just by virtue of carrying this book around — it’s this thick. I feel really compelled to crack it open in car pickup lines or waiting at the airport or whatever when it’s so easy to break out your phone and scroll or make phone calls or answer emails or whatever, which I probably should be doing also. It’s like working out. I got to this place where I recognized in myself, I was feeling if I couldn’t work out for half an hour or an hour, it wasn’t worth doing. I really just did not believe people who were like, little bits really add up, until I started doing it. I just committed to ten minutes in the morning right when I woke up, which we all have time for, to just do a really quick HIIT routine. It gets your blood pumping. It’s crazy how much that serotonin, dopamine hit happens just by committing to showing up for yourself in that way and actually doing it, the follow-through of that small goal that you set for yourself. I find I take on my whole day so differently when I have that momentary burst of energy and detoxifying and just cleaning your system out to get ready to go and take on the day. The same is true of reading. Yes, maybe it’s only ten minutes of reading time, but you feel fueled up and filled up in a different way than you do when you’ve just kept — it’s that input before output cycle that I think is sometimes — we don’t remember to pay attention to how much more efficient the whole day can feel or how much more productive or happier the whole day can feel just by starting slightly slower by feeling those first ten minutes of the day or ten minutes throughout the day.

Zibby: Yes. Yes, that. I feel like I say that every day, the doses, the blast of what you get when you’re inside someone else’s mind, the magic that’s just sitting in all these books waiting. You just open it up, and you’re thinking someone else’s thoughts. It’s crazy.

Daphne: I love it. You’re so right. You do. You leap inside their brain. How do you find things that you love to read? Do you go and wander in little bookstores? Especially children’s books. I see that you, obviously, have been in that world.

Zibby: #PrincessCharming.

Daphne: #PrincessCharming. I find it so hard to find kids’ books that I love. The message is really important. I remember when my oldest, Philomena, was born, when she was about two, I found a couple different books that I loved. We just ended up reading those over and over again. I would love to know how you find the ones that you love, besides writing them.

Zibby: Besides writing them. I mean, you only really need this one that I wrote. No. Luckily, I get sent all these books now for my podcast. I am lucky. I will say, I’m always taking the kids to bookstores for various events. What appeals to them ends up being the ones that we read. Even now, I’ll show them the catalog. I’ll get pitched from young readers at blah, blah, blah publisher. I’ll say, “Which one of these looks good?” Those are the ones I’ll get because it has to be something organic to them, in a way, I think.

Daphne: Of course.

Zibby: Yes, bookstores, I love indie bookstores and browsing and wandering. Also, they’re finding a lot of stuff at school that they come home and say that they want us to read. They’ll say, “We’re reading this. Could we buy a copy of whatever?” Sure.

Daphne: It’s the book fair at my kids’ school today, randomly. It makes me so happy because I do worry sometimes that — when I was little, my mom would take us to Barnes & Noble. We would be there for hours. I remember just playing in those aisles. Barnes & Noble set up those little reading nooks for kids and stuff. My grandma, literally, she’ll carry twenty books out of Barnes & Noble to ship home to herself when we’re on vacation and stuff, or little beautiful independent bookstores. I want that for my kids so badly. You’re absolutely right, it’s an escape. It teaches you to think differently. You’re in someone else’s reality all of a sudden. You’re inspiring me to commit even more to this thing that I was desperately feeling I needed in my life and that my kids need in their lives.

Zibby: You are inspiring me to eat cleaner and not feel restricted and enjoy all these delicious dishes, which I am going to run downstairs to try to whip up. Thank you.

Daphne: Yay. Can I tell you one recipe in addition to the breakfast ones we chatted about that’s really important about this book? Two things. Number one is I did — I feel like if you’re like me and you sit and you work at a desk sometimes or you’re around your house a lot where it’s very tempting and easy to snack and things of that nature, I really wanted to make sure that this book met people where they are. Yes, you are human. Therefore, when you are eating clean, you may still crave snacks. You may still crave dessert. I really wanted to be able to actually have answers to those questions, too, when people are going through their day. There’s a whole chapter in the book about snacks, which I am going to tell you about right this second. My nori popcorn, I am obsessed with. This is a salty, crunchy, spicy mix of popcorn with sesame seeds, toasted nori, and chili flake and sweet-and-spicy nuts. Then for dessert, chocolate Medjool date cake and this banana brulé. This was the craziest thing. I literally just had some coconut sugar. I rubbed the bananas a little in coconut oil, sprinkled the coconut sugar on top, and put them under the broiler. You get the sweetest, stickiest banana pudding with a crunchy sugar-top layer. It’s out-of-control delicious. It’s so good.

Zibby: Oh, my gosh. You’ve made my day. I am going to be so well-fed. I am very excited. I could talk to you all day. Thank you so much for coming on. I hope we continue this in some way, shape, or form. I will be shopping from your site from now on.

Daphne: Thank you, Zibby. I’m going out to order #PrincessCharming right now. Thank you so much.



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