Navigating the Kitchen and Motherhood with Catherine McCord – Podcast Ep 115


In this episode of the podcast, titled “Navigating the Kitchen and Motherhood with Catherine McCord,” host Catherine introduces Catherine McCord, founder of the popular website and the family food brand One Potato. As a mother of three, Catherine McCord understands the challenge of preparing three meals a day, seven days a week, for years to come. Drawing from her own experience, Catherine shares her insights, tips, and tricks to make the process of meal planning and preparation easier for all parents. Throughout the episode, Catherine discusses various aspects of motherhood and kitchen navigation, answering questions about managing kitchen overwhelm, dealing with picky eaters, and finding time-saving strategies. She also highlights her latest book, “Meal Prep Magic: Time-Saving Tips for Stress-Free Cooking,” which offers practical advice and 100 family-friendly recipes. Whether you’re a seasoned home cook or a busy mom looking to streamline mealtime, this episode is filled with valuable insights and inspiration.

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Who is Catherine McCord?

Catherine McCord is an accomplished chef, author, and entrepreneur. She is the founder of the popular website and the family food brand One Potato. Catherine has written several cookbooks, including Smoothie Project, Weelicious, Weelicious Lunches, and her newest book Meal Prep Magic: Time-Saving Tips for Stress-Free Cooking. She has made appearances on The Today Show, Good Morning America, and the Kelly Clarkson Show, as well as being a regular on the NBC Emmy Award-winning show Danny Seo Naturally and Food Network’s top-rated Guy’s Grocery Games. Catherine’s expertise in family-friendly cooking has earned her the trust of parents everywhere, including celebrity moms like Jennifer Garner and Ree Drummond.

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What Did We Discuss?

In the podcast episode, Catherine McCord shared her insights and experiences on navigating the kitchen and motherhood. Here are some of the key topics we covered:

Overview of the Episode

During the episode, Catherine provided valuable tips and tricks on how to make mealtime less stressful for parents. She touched on various aspects of cooking for a family, including dealing with picky eaters, cooking on busy nights, and essential ingredients to always have stocked in the kitchen.

Questions Covered

Catherine addressed a range of questions related to motherhood and cooking. Some of the questions included:

  • How did Catherine’s journey as a mom influence the creation of Weelicious?
  • What tips did Catherine offer to avoid feeling overwhelmed in the kitchen?
  • What are some everyday cooking tips that Catherine recommends?
  • What are the essential ingredients that Catherine always keeps stocked in her kitchen?
  • How can parents overcome picky eater hurdles with their kids?
  • What are Catherine’s go-to recipes for busy nights?
  • Has Catherine ever experienced any kitchen failures or learning experiences?
  • Does Catherine’s family have any mealtime traditions?
  • How does Catherine balance being a mother and an entrepreneur?
  • What does a typical day look like for Catherine?
  • What mom hack does Catherine believe every mom should know?

How Did Your Journey as a Mom Play a Role in Creating Weelicous?

As a mother of three, Catherine understands the challenges and responsibilities that come with feeding a family. Her journey as a mom greatly influenced the creation of Weelicious, her popular website dedicated to providing nutritious and appealing recipes for children and families. Catherine recognized the need for accessible and family-friendly recipes that could accommodate picky eaters and simplify meal planning. She wanted to help parents overcome the hurdles of preparing meals for their kids and make the process more enjoyable for both children and adults. Through Weelicious, Catherine shares her personal experiences and expert tips to empower parents in the kitchen.

Tips for Not Feeling Overwhelmed in the Kitchen

Cooking for a family can often feel overwhelming, especially when juggling other responsibilities. Catherine shared some valuable tips for parents to avoid feeling overwhelmed in the kitchen:

  1. Plan Ahead: Take some time each week to plan your meals and create a shopping list. This will prevent last-minute scrambling and help you stay organized.

  2. Batch Cooking: Prepare larger quantities of certain meals and freeze them in individual portions. This way, you can easily pull out a meal when you’re short on time or energy.

  3. Get the Kids Involved: Encourage your children to participate in meal preparation. Not only does it help lighten the load, but it also teaches them valuable skills and fosters a positive relationship with food.

  4. Simplify Your Recipes: Focus on simple, nutritious recipes that don’t require a long list of ingredients or complicated techniques. This will save you time and reduce stress in the kitchen.

  5. Embrace Imperfection: Remember that not every meal has to be gourmet or Pinterest-worthy. It’s okay to have simple meals or rely on shortcuts like pre-cut vegetables or store-bought sauces on busy days.

By implementing these tips, parents can create a more streamlined and enjoyable cooking experience.

Cooking Tips for Everyday Use

Catherine provided some practical cooking tips that she incorporates into her daily routine:

  1. Prepping Ingredients in Advance: Set aside time to chop vegetables, marinate meat, or prepare any other components of your meals ahead of time. This will save you time and make cooking during the week much more efficient.

  2. Investing in Quality Tools: Having reliable kitchen tools and equipment can greatly enhance your cooking experience. Invest in good knives, baking pans, and other essentials that will make your tasks easier and more enjoyable.

  3. Using Fresh Herbs and Spices: Don’t be afraid to experiment with different herbs and spices to enhance the flavors of your dishes. Fresh herbs can bring brightness and depth to a meal, while spices can add complexity and warmth.

  4. Temperature Control: Pay attention to the temperature when cooking various ingredients. Cooking proteins at the right temperature and resting them before slicing ensures tender and juicy results. Similarly, understanding the ideal temperature for baking can help achieve perfect textures.

  5. Tasting as You Go: Don’t be afraid to taste your dishes as you cook. It allows you to adjust seasonings, acidity, or sweetness, ensuring the flavors are balanced and to your liking.

These tips can help improve your everyday cooking skills and elevate the taste of your meals.

Essential Ingredients to Always Have Stocked in the Kitchen

Catherine emphasized the importance of keeping certain essential ingredients stocked in the kitchen. These pantry staples can serve as a foundation for various meals and ensure that you always have the basics on hand. Here are some key ingredients:

  • Olive oil and vegetable oil: These oils are versatile and can be used for sautéing, roasting, and dressing salads.
  • Salt and pepper: Essential for enhancing flavors in all types of dishes.
  • All-purpose flour: Used for baking, thickening sauces, and coating proteins.
  • Eggs: A versatile ingredient that can be used in various dishes and baking recipes.
  • Canned tomatoes: Great for making pasta sauces, stews, or soups.
  • Rice and pasta: Staples for creating quick and filling meals.
  • Garlic and onions: Provide depth and flavor to many dishes.
  • Chicken or vegetable broth: Used as a base for soups, stews, or sauces.
  • Dried herbs and spices: Essential for adding flavor to dishes. Some common ones include oregano, thyme, cumin, paprika, and cinnamon.
  • Condiments: Include your preferred selection of sauces and dressings, such as soy sauce, mustard, ketchup, and vinegar.

Having these ingredients readily available can simplify meal planning and give you the flexibility to create a variety of dishes.

Tips for Overcoming Picky Eater Hurdles with Kids

Dealing with picky eaters can be a challenge for many parents. Catherine shared some helpful tips for overcoming this hurdle:

  1. Offer Variety: Introduce a wide range of flavors and textures early on. Offer a variety of fruits, vegetables, and proteins to expose your child to different tastes and encourage acceptance of new foods.

  2. Involve Your Child in Meal Planning: Allow your child to have a say in meal planning by letting them choose a vegetable or a side dish. This gives them a sense of ownership and may make them more willing to try new foods.

  3. Presentation and Fun: Make meals visually appealing by arranging food in interesting patterns or shapes. Create a fun and positive dining atmosphere that can make mealtime more enjoyable for your child.

  4. Be a Role Model: Show your child that you enjoy a wide variety of foods and have a positive attitude towards trying new things. Children often mimic their parents’ behavior, so offering a positive example can encourage them to be more adventurous eaters.

  5. Don’t Force It: Avoid pressuring or forcing your child to eat. This can create negative associations with food and lead to further resistance. Instead, provide a variety of options and allow your child to explore and choose what they feel comfortable with.

By implementing these strategies, parents can encourage healthy eating habits and help their children become more open to trying new foods.

Go-To Recipes for Busy Nights

Catherine shared some of her go-to recipes for busy nights when there’s limited time to prepare a meal. These recipes are quick, easy, and satisfying:

  • Sheet Pan Chicken Fajitas: Toss chicken, bell peppers, and onions with a blend of spices and roast them on a sheet pan. Serve with tortillas, salsa, and sour cream for a delicious and customizable meal.

  • One-Pot Pasta: Cook pasta in one pot with broth or sauce, adding in vegetables or protein for a complete meal. It’s a time-saving option that minimizes clean-up.

  • Stir-Fry: Sauté a mix of your favorite vegetables and protein in a hot pan with soy sauce or stir-fry sauce. Serve over rice or noodles for a quick and flavorful meal.

  • Quesadillas: Fill tortillas with cheese, your choice of protein or vegetables, and any other desired toppings. Quick to assemble and cook, quesadillas are a crowd-pleasing option suitable for busy nights.

By having these simple recipes in your repertoire, you’ll always have a backup plan for those hectic evenings.

Kitchen Failures and Learning Experiences

Catherine shared her experiences of kitchen failures and learning moments. She emphasized that everyone makes mistakes in the kitchen, even seasoned chefs. She encouraged embracing these failures as learning experiences and opportunities for growth. Whether it’s overcooking a dish or trying a new technique that didn’t turn out as expected, these moments allow you to adapt and improve your skills. Catherine emphasized the importance of maintaining a positive attitude and not being discouraged by setbacks. Each failure provides an opportunity to learn and become a better cook.

Catherine’s Resources

Catherine McCord has created a wealth of resources to support parents in the kitchen. Here are some of her recommended platforms and books:

  • Weelicious: Catherine’s popular website,, offers a vast collection of family-friendly recipes, meal planning tips, and kitchen inspiration.

  • One Potato: One Potato is Catherine’s family food brand that provides pre-portioned meal kits with organic and seasonal ingredients, making it easier for families to cook nutritious meals together.

  • Meal Prep Magic: Time-Saving Tips for Stress-Free Cooking: Catherine’s newest book is a practical guide to organizing your kitchen and saving time in meal preparation. It includes 100 family-friendly recipes and expert tips for efficient cooking.

  • Instagram: Catherine can be found on Instagram at @weelicious, where she shares recipe ideas, meal prep tips, and glimpses into her family’s culinary adventures.

  • TikTok: Catherine shares engaging and informative content on TikTok at @weelicious, providing quick recipe ideas and kitchen hacks.

  • Twitter: Connect with Catherine on Twitter at @weelicious for updates, tips, and engaging conversations.

  • YouTube: Catherine runs the Weelicious YouTube channel, where she demonstrates recipes, provides cooking tips, and shares her passion for family-friendly cooking.

  • Pinterest: Visit Catherine’s Pinterest account, @weelicious, for a collection of recipe ideas, meal planning tips, and kitchen inspiration.

These resources serve as valuable references for parents seeking support and inspiration in the kitchen.

In conclusion, Catherine McCord’s expertise and experience in the realm of family-friendly cooking make her a valuable resource for parents navigating the challenges of mealtime. Her insights on overcoming picky eater hurdles, simplifying kitchen routines, and her collection of recipes can empower parents to create delicious and nutritious meals for their families. By embracing a positive and adaptable mindset, parents can transform the kitchen into a place of creativity, enjoyment, and connection.

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