the grub street diet

Casey Wilson Prefers Her Chicken Parm in Bed

“No one loves that about me, but it’s my truth.”

Casey Wilson’s life advice: “At the end of the day, just pack an orange. Get back to the basics.” Illustration: Elly Rodgers
Casey Wilson’s life advice: “At the end of the day, just pack an orange. Get back to the basics.” Illustration: Elly Rodgers

Casey Wilson knows what she likes: coffee that tastes like a milkshake, “life-changing” banana-chocolate-chip muffins, and dinner in bed. This week, the star of Showtime’s Black Monday, co-host of the quintessential Bravoholic podcast Bitch Sesh, and author of the New York Times bestselling collection of essays The Wreckage of My Presence bustled with work, parenting, podcasting, and getting out to see old friends at her favorite L.A. haunts, including one destination that feels “very ‘right’ for this unique time of transitioning back to socializing.”

Friday, June 4
I recently witnessed a dear friend — an actress who shall remain nameless — take the tops off ten Splendas and pop them in her coffee. It was at that moment that I decided I’m sick of the shame. I’m going to own it. This is me coming clean: I take my coffee with one and a half Splendas. AND I REFUSE TO APOLOGIZE.

Now that that’s out of the way, here’s how the rest of my coffee goes. I prepare a strange blend of oat milk with a splash of a Stumptown cold brew, and I throw in my Splendas, and it really gives me what I need to start my day: a coffee that tastes like a milkshake.  I’m not saying I’m proud of it, but I am saying if you even think about suggesting Stevia, prepare to see murderous rage.

Then my children give me orders as if I’m a head chef at a terrible restaurant. Because I’m a terrible cook. My son needs his butter toast, his Cheerios, his fluffy eggs, etc. Who do they think I am? They need to eat — I get it — but this can be angering.

I make a litany of things for them every morning, but there is one thing that really stands out nowadays: It’s a grainless muffin, because my son has celiac disease, and this muffin has become the muffin of my life. Amy Shapiro, a nutritionist I work with in New York, gave me the recipe. It’s almond butter, bananas, a couple chocolate chips. This muffin has redefined my entire worldview. Everything revolves around these muffins. Normally, I don’t partake in things that have to be homemade or batched. But I make three batches and put them in the freezer. They are life-changing.

During the day, I often get into a Greek yogurt with berries and chia seeds when it’s one of those nonstop work days where it’s all a blur. I just wrapped Black Monday on Showtime and am finishing up a press tour for my book, The Wreckage of My Presence. There’s been a lot going on!

Now let me tell you about my husband’s relationship with food. He basically has black coffee all day and doesn’t eat anything and then orders a cheeseburger and fries at night. It’s disturbing. It works just fine for him, but it’s disturbing. I always tell him, “I’m not sure that’s how intermittent fasting works.”

Tonight is more civilized, however. The cast of Black Monday and I go to Majordōmo, the David Chang restaurant. Our crew includes Don Cheadle, Regina Hall, Andrew Rannells and Paul Scheer, Ken Marino, Yassir Lester, my husband, and some others. We have so much fun. We are screaming with laughter. People are annoyed. It is a dream. Don orders for everyone, family style. I eat braised meats, an amazing pitalike bread with a twist on hummus, and one of the best gin-and-tonics I’ve ever had.

Saturday, June 5
Coffee and Splenda for breakfast plus my cherished muffins.

For lunch, I’m very much into Daily Harvest. I’m looking for a brand-ambassador sponsorship (anyone?). I’m really into their mint-chocolate smoothie. Again, a healthy option that tastes like a milkshake, for every meal, is the goal here. I’ll maybe add some spinach to that in the blender. And then … Jennifer Aniston had me at hello with her collagen powder. So I’ll add that too. Before you ask the question, the answer is: I don’t know if it works. But I’ll do anything Jen’s doing, ’cause it’s working for her.

I’m perpetually dehydrated. Nothing does it for me in terms of water appeal. So — it’s a terrible name in these body-positive times — I like something called the Slim Master from Kreation. It’s basically lemonade. I throw a splash of that in my real water. And that helps me drink more of it.

For a snack, I’m into a very large orange. I just like it. Words to live by: At the end of the day, just pack an orange. Get back to the basics.

I don’t like seafood. It’s just who I am. So for dinner, I’m in a rotation of chicken and chicken. Tonight, I have a Chinese chicken salad from Kreation. I eat those almost every day for one meal or another.

My dear friend and co-host of Bitch Sesh, my Real Housewives–recap podcast, Danielle Schneider and I usually record our podcast pretty late, after our kids are asleep, and to celebrate making it through our long, hard days, sometimes we do something controversial: We crack open a Coca-Cola Classic. We don’t do it often, but when we do, it’s a real bright spot for me. There’s nothing like the real thing. A Coke will pep you up like none other. And yet for some reason, I can drink one right before bed and sleep like a baby.

Unlike Kathy Hilton of RHOBH, my icon, I’m not into Red Bull. I’m scared of Red Bull. It reminds me of taking NoDoz in college and suddenly feeling like I was going to die of cardiac arrest.

Sunday, June 6
I’ve gotten very into hard-boiled eggs, and I’m very much into that everything-bagel seasoning. Sometimes it’s in my purse, right next to my Splenda packets. This morning, I throw it on an egg with a little olive oil and a little avocado. It makes me feel good. I try to hard-boil my own eggs, like five at a time. I’ve watched a lot of videos on that.

For lunch, I pick up a salad from MIXT. I do love a salad. My go-to is some version of chicken, avocado, pine nuts, cucumber, and balsamic dressing.

Later on, I get into one of those RXBars. Basically, I eat all these things that a 5-year-old would define as healthy.

For dinner, we feed the kids the requisite hot dogs or gluten-free pasta and then we go out to dinner. Mozza has a new outdoor eating area, with beautiful twinkly white lights everywhere. It’s so gorgeous and magical there. It feels very special and very “right” for this unique time of transitioning back to socializing.

My husband and I go with my dear friend Jessi Klein for her husband’s birthday. We have too many drinks, and we talk too loudly, and we over-order, and it is perfect. Jessi and my husband share the same neurosis of not ordering enough food, so they are very worried that we won’t have enough. But it’s a great order; they nail it. My entrée is a balsamic steak, which, when ordered at Mozza, is truly one of the greatest meals you can have in Los Angeles.

I don’t drink much. I try to order my margaritas “skinny,” but I also tend to mumble and whisper that word, halfway hoping the waiter doesn’t hear me, in which case, What can I do? I typically try to drink only one day a week. I just get too hung-over, and I don’t want to feel that way around my kids.

My husband drinks vodka-sodas — and as I say in my book, I sincerely believe that’s a cocktail for people who hate themselves.

Monday, June 7
We were supposed to go to a Dodgers meal — I mean, game — over the weekend. To get into a hot dog and a soft pretzel is probably my ideal food situation. I’m not so much into the baseball of it all. But that didn’t happen, so I’m feeling kind of sad about it.

Lunch is some chicken salad.

And for a snack, my beloved muffin. Or two.

When the day is done, things get a little dicey in terms of my eating rituals. In my book, you’ll learn that sometimes my husband and I will throw a beach towel on our bed and simply … eat dinner in bed. No one loves that about me, but it’s my truth.

Again, this might be upsetting to some people, but for example, tonight we order from Little Dom’s here in Los Feliz. We order chicken parm, a rice ball, and cacio e pepe. We cover our Parachute duvet in beach towels and eat it all in bed. (Again, we lay out the beach towels! The Parachute does not suffer!) Also, don’t worry, we eat quickly and bring the food right downstairs so the smells don’t engulf our bedroom. Because we’re not monsters.

Keep in mind most people eat dinner on a couch, and this isn’t that different! Sadly, we aren’t able to eat dinner on our couch because we bought a couch called the “Cloud” from Restoration Hardware, and I cannot say — with love — enough negative things about it. It ruins your back. You can’t get up. It’s like a large beanbag. Our bed provides more firmness than our couch, and so here we are.

My favorite at-home dessert for the moment is this mint-chocolate-chip Yasso bar. It’s really good. Another treat I’d like to mention are these sodas called United Sodas of America. They’re truly unbelievable. And they’re so gorgeous!! They’re so beautifully packaged. They make me happy. I also like a Cann, an artisanal cannabis drink with like five milligrams of THC. It’s a very, very light amount. I really don’t love weed — I get too paranoid — but this is something nice to have at night, and to wake up with no hangover.

Tuesday, June 8
This is my Watch What Happens Live filming day, which I always love doing. So I prep for that along with my coffee and muffins. The other guest is Eboni K. Williams from New York, who has invigorated the franchise.

For lunch, I make a light chicken stir-fry.

To wrap the very long day, I have dinner with my good friend June Diane Raphael. We go to Cara, a new restaurant in Los Feliz in a new boutique hotel with an outdoor-dining area. I love it there! They have a lemon pasta, which is incredible. When I made the New York Times best-sellers list (brag), my husband took me there, so it has a really special place in my heart now.

As you can see, I love treats, but I’m trying to do everything in moderation and splurge on my favorites when I’m with friends. It’s so nice reuniting with people, finally, that I want to celebrate this special moment in time with good food and good drinks.

Tomorrow, it’s back to my hard-boiled eggs, sprinkled with some magic found in my pocketbook.

More Grub Street Diets

See All
Casey Wilson’s Grub Street Diet