I am so happy to show you the cookbook cover for Eating in the Middle: A Mostly Wholesome Cookbook! Are you as emotional as I am?
This cookbook is so special to me. When I wrote it Eating in the Middle, of course I wanted to share all of these delicious recipes that I’d been force-feeding Sabrina for a year, but also, I wanted the book to serve as this very real reflection of my relationship with food: balance. I wanted it to have some of that same openness about food and weight that It Was Me All Along had, so it does–in 5 essays.
Balance looks and feels different for each of us, but for me, it’s about living a full, vibrant life where no food is off the table. I love kale, green juices, hemp seeds, and I believe in eating a giant salad once a day, but I just can’t live feeling deprived. I can’t even bear to imagine a world where doughnuts are a non-option.
The style of eating that I practice day-in and day-out keeps me sane and feeling good, but better than that, it keeps me happy.
For anyone who has struggled with food or weight, you know what I mean when I say, health and happiness can seem mutually exclusive. It only took me 30 years to realize, they’re not. They don’t have to be.
Since the first diet I ever went on, in the eighth grade, I spent years swinging between two extremes: restriction and overeating; between being “good” and being “bad;” between being on the wagon and eating healthy, and being off the wagon and eating everything in sight. It was exhausting, of course. Painful, God yes. But when you live in a stark, black-and-white world like this, where there’s only ever success OR failure, and no safety net to catch you if you should fall somewhere in between, you think the only thing to do is to keep swinging. And the harder you diet, the harder you crash into a binge inevitably.
In struggling with overeating for so long, I thought, If I could just get rid of the swings toward overeating–if I could just get rid of the temptations, the sweets, the junk—THEN I could finally get a handle on my weight. If only I could JUST eat healthy all the time.
Was it the overeating that was the problem, though? Or was it the restriction?
After too many failed diets and double that of binges–all of which caused me to gain more and more–I started to realize that the ‘healthy’ thing to do, and ultimately what led me to the stablest, happiest, best weight for me–was to get the hell off the swing.
It didn’t happen overnight. So many of us become conditioned to that all-or-nothing behavior—so much so that at a certain point, it almost feels easier to go on a 3-day juice cleanse than to try to “eat moderately.” It was worth it to try. I wanted to be happy as much as I wanted to be healthy, and truth be told, I wasn’t really either. I didn’t think I could maintain my weight without white-knuckling it on a diet (and that felt like a prison sentence) but I also didn’t feel safe enough to let go of that diet, out of fear that I’d eat nonstop for the rest of my life once I gave myself the freedom.
There had to be a middle ground.
Slowly, I made room for more regular indulgences. And the more foods I freed from labels of “good” and “bad,” the less I labeled myself, and the less likely I was to binge on those foods. The more I gave myself permission to eat rich foods when I wanted them, the less I found myself overeating them, because I developed a trust that I could have them again.
It was working. I felt better, saner, healthier, and happier.
This book, and the way it breaks down into mostly wholesome with a sprinkling of decadence, is exactly how I live my life. It’s balance. It’s the testament to a life well-lived, with plenty of real, whole foods and some life-changing chocolate hazelnut bread pudding thrown in there, too.
For those of us who struggle or have struggled with eating or weight, the ultimate work is finding a way to mend our relationships with food. This book can’t heal your relationship, but it can certainly read as a love story of balance. If I’ve learned one thing in these 30 years, it’s that you can be healthy, happy, and feel good while eating food that you crave.
Release date!! March 29th
I will be posting more about the cookbook in the coming weeks leading up to the release, with some amazing ways YOU can cook with me, find your own healthy relationship with food and eating, and so much more. I’m so excited I can hardly stand it. I love you.
Thank you to these incredible women for their beautiful and kind words of praise about Eating in the Middle!
“This book has exactly the kinds of foods I love—healthy, wholesome dishes you won’t believe are light, and a few decadent treats sprinkled in for those special occasions, because let’s be realistic, isn’t that what life’s about? Eating in the Middle is about balance, not about depravation. I adore Andie, and I can’t wait to dig in to that Peanut Butter Mousse Pie!”
“Most every woman, at some point in her life, is able to relate to Andie’s struggle with weight and food. Therefore, many will find something in this book, whether it’s comforting advice or a satisfying meal. Eating in the Middle provides any level of cook with recipes that nourish the body while satisfying the taste buds—a difficult feat, which Andie masters flawlessly! Her stories are beautifully written and echo the inspiring mantras of her bestselling memoir. This cookbook will make you fall in love with food all over again, in a balanced, mostly wholesome way.”
“This girl is not only a storyteller, but man, is she a chef. She knows what she is doing in the kitchen and she knows how to string words together in such a beautiful way to express herself and send her message directly to her readers’ hearts. I can’t think of anyone better suited to write a cookbook, and I hope there are many more where this came from. I credit Andie for reigniting my passion for cooking after my own eating disorder struggle. Thank you, Andie, for being a sensation and an inspiration.”
“With Eating in the Middle, Andie is squashing the all-or-nothing dieting attitude one recipe at a time. You can feel her vibrant and genuine spirit in each word. In fact, Andie is your best friend on this journey with you. I’ve never seen a cookbook celebrate a realistic, healthful lifestyle (with the occasionally indulgence!) as well as Eating in the Middle. Fabulous!”
“Anyone who is or wants to be a mindful eater will treasure Eating in the Middle, as moderation has never been more approachable and satisfying. Those who loved Andie’s memoir, It Was Me All Along, will be thrilled that she’s back with another work as honest as it is delicious.”
—Kerry Diamond, cofounder of Cherry Bombe magazine
“Andie Mitchell makes balance possible for us all in her new book by reimagining her favorite dishes and foods for a modern (and moderate) lifestyle.”
—Claudia Wu, cofounder of Cherry Bombe magazine
“As someone who has obsessed over food my whole life, in both positive and challenging ways, I felt that reading Andie’s words was like hearing the voice inside of my head. I’m sure I’m not the only one to feel that way. Once again, just like she did in her moving memoir, Andie gives us so much. Not only are there recipes that will make you want to get in the kitchen immediately, there’s that honest and vulnerable voice that makes us feel less alone in the struggle to maintain healthy relationships with both food and ourselves.”
—Julia Turshen, cookbook writer (her new cookbook, Small Victories, soon to come!)
“I love Andie’s healthy approach to healthy eating. Stressing over what to eat can be just as bad for our health as eating poorly, but she definitely strikes the right balance in Eating in the Middle.”