Plus, her go-to slow cooker recipe and the fruit she always craves during pregnancy.
The world adores Joanna Gaines and her husband Chip, for their long-running but recently ended HGTV show Fixer Upper, which found the couple teaming up to remodel homes in their signature rustic, minimalist style. Wooden doors, white tile floors, white marble countertops, and tall windows that let the sunshine in—these country-inspired-with-a-modern-twist designs earned them a devoted following. The couple is now moving away from home renovations, and seems to have their eye firmly focused on the food world: Last February, they opened their first restaurant, Magnolia Table, in their hometown of Waco, and this week, Joanna published her very first cookbook, Magnolia Table.
If you’ve ever wondered what Joanna always keeps in her fridge, her favorite slow cooker recipe, and her pregnancy cravings (she’s currently expecting her fifth child) Food & Wine got the inside scoop. Here’s everything you’ve ever wanted to know about how to cook—and entertain—like Joanna Gaines.
Her favorite recipe in Magnolia Table
“It took nine months to figure out the biscuit recipe,” she explains. “Chip loves biscuits and gravy, so I was determined to find the perfect recipe for our family. Every Saturday, I would mix it together and [the kids] would be my little critics. It’s my kids’ favorite. Every Saturday, they still ask for it.”
Her favorite spring ingredient
“Being pregnant, I kind of crave citrus, and my kids love lemon. Whether it’s lemon pie, lemon bread, lemon cake—I’m loving lemons, even in my water.”
The rest of her pregnancy cravings
“It’s stuff that children eat, so really sweet child-type cereal, candy—my kids are loving life right now because normally we’re pretty strict about what we eat in the mornings, and now they’re eating all this really sugary cereal.”
What she always keeps stocked in her refrigerator
“I always have milk. I always have buttermilk, butter, eggs, bacon for Chip and the boys, and then I always love having a spring salad mix.”
Her favorite part of spring entertaining
“I like to keep it light and fresh and colorful, so that’s when I love to incorporate a salad. As far as the table, I love to incorporate all the fresh blooms that are growing—whether you have to get it from the florist or you have your own growing. There’s something so pretty about a spring table. Even if it’s just dinner, we try to get the fresh blooms from outside, and celebrate the season.”
What she always serves at a dinner party
“I like to serve a casserole, but I also love appetizers. I love when my family and friends come and gather around the island, and they’re eating dips. That’s fun for conversation, while I’m finishing dinner. Casseroles are nice because they feed a lot of people. I like artichoke dip, queso, guacamole—anything that you can dip a chip in, that’s me."
Her go-to slow cooker recipe
“I make beef tips [the recipe is featured in Magnolia Table]. Chip is a meat and potatoes kind of guy, so it makes life so easy when you can throw something in and come home, and your house smells so good, and it’s tender and yummy. It’s perfect for the family.”
Meals she cooks with her kids
“Anything with dough because they love rolling and cutting things out. Cinnamon rolls—I love making cinnamon rolls and the Syrian doughnuts that are in the book. I made chicken potpie yesterday and they love to peel potatoes, so they peel the potatoes for me.”
Other than peeling potatoes, Gaines says kids will love “working with the mixer because it’s fun to see everything blended together.”