Because food connects us all, Yahoo Life is serving up a heaping plateful of table talk with people who are passionate about what's on their menu in Deglazed, a series about food.
Kaley Cuoco admits she's not an adventurous eater.
"When I find something I like, I'll order that for lunch for literally six months," she admits. "That's my personality: It's like all or nothing. I get very stuck on something and I will literally eat it ... until I can't eat it again."
A food that totally turns the Flight Attendant actress and producer off? Mushrooms.
"One food I absolutely cannot stand the sight of — and everyone knows it — is mushrooms," she says. "I am so offended by a mushroom. I want nothing to do with it. If it's on my plate, my meal is ruined and I will stand by that for the rest of my life."
Cuoco spoke with Yahoo Life as part of her role as Smirnoff's "chief summer officer," a role which she hopes to use to encourage other adults to let go and have fun this summer. Her current favorite Smirnoff product is their Red, White and Berry-flavored varieties, but the 36-year-old says she's learned some ways to enjoy a few summer sips without the hangover.
"The older I get, I just don't like the way I feel," she says of her relationship with alcohol. "When you're younger, the hangover is half the time — I don't have time to feel like that anymore."
"I love going out with my girls and having a glass of wine or, on a hot day, having a Smirnoff Ice, cold over ice," she says. "But I don't like the way I feel after a lot of drinks so I actually like to mix [drinks that contain alcohol] with sparkling water so you're getting kind of a half and half. My tolerance has changed and I'm definitely OK with that."
Cuoco says she also tries to find balance in what she eats, admitting she isn't a fan of the word "diet." Instead, she works with a nutritionist and focuses on eating in ways that fuel her body and make her feel good. "I think the older you get, or at least for me, I've learned what's best for me," she says.
In addition to eating several small meals throughout the day to keep her energy up, Cuoco depends on hydration to stay healthy. "I have the half-gallon jug that I carry around," she says. "I try to do two of those [a day]. I don't always succeed, but that is my goal."
Still, she loves to indulge in favorites like pizza. "If pizza was good for me, I would eat it every single day of my life," she says. "There's nothing more comforting or more delicious. I always feel awful after, but it's totally worth it."
Cuoco is a pescetarian and says salmon is one of her go-to favorite things to cook at home. "I grill it or I put it in tacos or a stir-fry," she says. Other sources of protein she cooks with often include lentils and other beans. But she hasn't always been good at making chili, one of her current must-haves.
"When I was eating meat, I was new to the slow cooker and I was so excited to make a turkey chili for my friends," she recalls. "I put the meat directly into the slow cooker and I couldn't understand why it wasn't cooking. I called my girlfriend and she was like, 'Did you brown the meat?' I was like, 'What does that mean?'"
"I had to throw the whole thing out because I had put raw meat inside with the veggies," she continues.
So as Smirnoff's summertime expert, what does a perfect summer barbecue look like at Cuoco's house?
"I would go in my backyard because I have the best backyard and I never want to leave my house," she says. "I make an epic fruit bowl, by the way. I am the queen and I make them look really pretty — I sprinkle a little sugar on top and [the fruits] look all shiny. I go get the best fruit I can, and I'm very particular about how they're cut."
On her guest list? She has a few ideas.
"I would be with my sister — and my parents are really fun to hang out with," she says. "And my boyfriend, too. I don't know: I've just got the best people and I never want to leave my house so that's where I would go. I'm very selfish because I don't want to go anywhere, so I just bring everyone to me."
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