Molly Sims Puts Hood Cottage Cheese On Everything - Exclusive Interview

When you think about the life and hours of models, you might find yourself wondering how they fuel up to work through long hours or what they snack on at home. Fortunately, Molly Sims, who has modeled for Jimmy Choo, Chanel, and Giorgio Armani, among others, spoke to Mashed about some of her favorite recipes, snacks and food memories. In her latest partnership with Hood Cottage Cheese, Sims is not simply a model and spokeswoman. She is an avid fan of cottage cheese for its added protein and versatility. That's why Hood Cottage Cheese is hoping to spread the love with a sweepstakes between February 23rd and March 9th. 

Hood Cottage Cheese is asking fans to share their love of cottage cheese to be named "The Big (Cottage) Cheese." Whoever shares their appreciation for the brand's curds will be entered to win a year's supply of Hood Cottage Cheese along with a $1,000 grocery gift card, a Hood Cottage Cheese swag pack and a personalized video message from Molly Sims herself. The winner might be featured on Hood's social channels. All you have to do is enter on Hood's giveaway website. Even if you're not deemed "The Big (Cottage) Cheese," Sims shared plenty of reasons to love cottage cheese a few of her favorite ways to use it.

Sims on family ties to food

Can you tell us about the intersection of your modeling career and food?

The first real intersection was growing up in Kentucky and having a very Southern mom. It's funny because my mom had a love of food. She grew up on a farm. Her mom and dad were very close to us. She was always very into a magazine called "Southern Living." Very Southern — casseroles, dishes, cakes. She was a great, incredible baker. That love of food, and biscuits, and the tradition through baking with her family, definitely was very much a part of my life. She was very into doing traditions, like making something [for] Valentine's, or Easter, or Christmas. She definitely celebrated through food. 

My mom makes this spinach casserole. It is the single best spinach casserole, besides her red velvet cake, and her biscuits. Actually, my grandmother's biscuits were better than hers. She had a spinach casserole and it's totally like Americana. It's cheddar, a block of American cheese, like what you put in queso. Cottage cheese, flour, butter, salt. You put it in a Crockpot and you let it sit.

It is the single best spinach casserole you will ever eat. It's really, really simple. That's one thing that I absolutely still make. I grew up with it. There was an amazing red velvet cake. I grew up with cornbread, and tomatoes and cottage cheese. I grew up with biscuits, and breads, and homemade cookies, and coconut cakes. My aunts and my family made a book of all of their recipes. It's amazing. It's all of her sisters and her brothers and everyone. She makes a chocolate sheet cake. She was probably a better baker than a cook, but she had definitely her certain things.

I think my real love of food from different cultures came through modeling, living in New York city, living in Paris and Italy and Germany. Through that, and also traveling to India and Thailand, I got exposed at quite a young age with all the different cultures and all different types of food. My palette grew from being very Southern, to having culturally experienced a lot of different things.

Molly Sims on eating healthy on the go

What are some of your favorite on the go tips for eating healthy? Especially on long shoots.

I have Hood Country Style Cottage Cheese and I have berries. I have a [reusable glass bottle] full of water. I have a coffee. There is a new snack, I got it from the girl who started Arrae [supplements]. She has a calm and a bloating pill for digestion. There's these One bars that I like. I personally like the sea salt dark chocolate. I will definitely individually bag it out, because if not, like I'll eat a thousand almonds, or a thousand nuts, or a thousand nut thins. If I like something, I can eat like that forever. 

I like rolled up turkey. I like vegetables and hummus. I make a pizza dish with crackers, cottage cheese, tomato, and Parmesan, that I heat up and it's like a great healthy snack. Kelly LeVeque, who I worked with as a nutritionist off and on for [many] years, taught me about a thing called freezer fudge. You can make it, and put it in the refrigerator, and cut it into little squares. It's a great recipe. Super easy. You do not have to be someone who makes chocolate. That's something really easy to make.

What do you typically eat in a day?

Sometimes, I do intermittent fasting. If I don't, I love egg whites. I love poached eggs, with a slice of toast. I end up eating my kids' bacon, even though I say I'm not going to,. I do. I love avocado toast, with a little salt and pepper and a little bit of a chili flakes. I have like a prepackaged protein shake. That's dates, collagen, protein powder, vanilla. I'll add a blueberry or strawberry with almond milk. I pre-make them, and then I grab it, put it in, so I don't have to constantly take all the different scoops, which is a great way to do that. For lunch, I like soups. I like cauliflower soup, chicken noodle soup. I like salads with chicken, fish, salmon.

[It's] mainly protein, vegetables or something warm. I got on a bone broth kick a couple years ago. For whatever reason, it fills me up and I feel good. For dinner, it depends. If we go Mexican, I would do a fajita. I love steak, chicken, fish. I'm not overly [into] sauces, but there's nothing better than a white fish, like a great Branzino, or Dover sole. I love that if I'm going out to dinner or something like that.

Molly Sims on celebrity chefs and favorite ingredients

If you could have one celebrity chef cook for you, who would it be?

Well, one of my dreams came through for my 10-year anniversary in September: Evan Funke of Felix and Mother Wolf. It was one of the single best meals of my life. I have never had pasta like that, ever in my entire life. Not even Italy. It was phenomenal. He is one of my favorites. 

There's a great restaurant here called Maude. What I liked about Maude was [that it was] based on the season of what he picked. It could be almond. It could be cauliflower. It could be anything, but Curtis Stone is the chef. He's actually bringing it back in LA. It's going to reopen. It shut down due to COVID, but I would love for him to cook something personally for me. I think he's so fun. I know him, but I would definitely love for him to cook something. He's so talented

I love John and Vinny. I love that whole crew — I think LA is kind of coming back due to COVID, with the restaurants. Everybody's hoping Trois Mec will come back. [I'm] happy that Pastis came back in New York.

It's funny, back when I was in Las Vegas on NBC, I got to work with Wolfgang Puck. He was amazing. Old school, but amazing. 

Tell us your favorite ingredient that you always keep on hand at home.

I know everybody says truffle, but I'm not going to say truffle. I do like champagne vinaigrette [or] champagne vinegar. It's an odd ingredient, but it goes in a lot of things. It's a very odd ingredient, but I love it. Also, Dijon mustard goes into a lot of things. Honey is also great. I use honey and Dijon mustard in a salmon dish that I bake with thyme. It's absolutely delicious. You can have no cooking skills whatsoever and [it will still] be amazing.

Sims' guilty pleasures

We'd love to know what your go-to fast food order is and where you like to get it from. If you don't do fast food very often, do you have a guilty pleasure food that you enjoy?

I'm a mom of three and I would be a complete and utter liar if I tell you that we do not [eat fast food]. I have to say, since my childhood, there is no better lemonade than Chick-fil-A. There is probably no better chicken nugget than Chick-fil-A or a chicken sandwich. If you're going high end [fast food], Chick-fil-A never lets me down.

What is it about Hood Cottage Cheese that keeps you reaching for it?

Who would've thought that I would love cottage cheese, but I grew up on cottage cheese. It is my secret ingredient that no one knows. It's healthy. It's protein. It's calcium. It's nutritious. I've been eating Hood cottage cheese for a thousand years. I guess I've talked about it enough that they came to me. They have a new flavor, everything bagel. It's so good. It's amazing. You can do it on a cracker [or] on a bagel. Literally, I'm eating for breakfast, cottage cheese right now, with blueberries and raspberries.

I think cottage cheese has kind of got a bad rap. I think some people have problems with the texture, but my kids love it. We put it in our pancakes. We're actually making a pancake peach recipe that has it in it. My favorite recipe in the entire world, my mom's spinach casserole. I eat it as the snack. I eat it for breakfast. It's great. 

You can have it sweet and savory. I know Hood has really dedicated themselves to not just having the country style, but to having the different flavors. Whether it be peach or pineapple or everything bagel. I do think probably some people don't know, it's not just your country style, cottage cheese. She's got a whole new look. It's fun. I'm very authentic and honest in what I eat, and what I don't eat. 

Enter the Hood giveaway at this link. You can find Molly Sims' recipes on her website and Hood Cottage Cheese at your local grocery store.