Lady Gaga is having a big year. She just wrapped up headlining Coachella in April, she's about to embark on her Joanne tour in August, and you might recall that earlier this year, Gaga gave a killer performance at a little thing called the Super Bowl. But before her halftime show debut, there were some interesting rumors about what she was eating to prep for her big moment in the spotlight. The best one (which we kind of hoped was true): that she was eating nothing but sushi and Champagne.
"No. Definitely not. One hundred percent not," said her childhood pal and former personal chef, Bo O'Connor, when asked about the rumor. The Feast recently spoke with O'Connor, who served as Gaga's chef on her 2014 Artpop tour and is currently the chef at The Pomeroy restaurant in NYC to get all the real details on Gaga's eating habits while on the road.
"Gaga and I, we grew up together. So I've known her since I was six years old and she was five years old," O'Connor explained. "We went to the same school from kindergarten all through 12th grade. She was the maid of honor at my wedding. So we have a personal relationship."
It's fairly safe to say, then, that O'Connor and Gaga are pretty close pals. So when Gaga went on tour for Artpop, she naturally looked to her BFF—who happened to be a professional chef—to travel all over the world with her and cook for the crew.
"In general she's pretty healthy on tour because she has to be. She usually puts on a pretty intense show, so she can't be eating Doritos, clearly," O'Connor said, noting that her daily menu varied depending on what country they were in and what ingredients were available. "So I would travel with a dry pantry of items that I know that she liked that were healthy and that were hard to find." Pantry staples included full-protein pasta—made without white flour—low-sodium beans, and Gaga's favorite spices.
"She's definitely an Italian girl at heart, so she loves the red sauce, or gravy as they call it, and a healthy version of pasta or quinoa or stuff like that," O'Connor revealed.
"Healthy" was the key word on tour, starting with breakfast. "It would usually involve some type of eggs or egg whites, definitely vegetables, a lot of vegetables, and sometimes Greek yogurt or different types of fruit, or healthy granola," she described. "If [Gaga] was in the mood for French toast or something like that that was sweeter, we would make a healthier version of that for her."
Lunches and dinners also had a healthy spin—and yes, Gaga does eat burgers. "We would do a version of a burger but do it with ground turkey meat or ground chicken meat and add all different types of herbs and spices to jazz it up and to not make it so boring and to not make it so one-level," she explained.
Staying hydrated, naturally, was important on the road. Gaga drank a lot of tea, along with fresh coconut water. And when she needed a pick-me-up, O'Connor would whip up a special drink. "Sometimes when she wasn't feeling great or felt run-down we would make a hot drink with fresh turmeric, fresh ginger, lemongrass, to try to just calm her system," she explained. Green drinks were also on the menu: "She didn't drink processed juices and stuff like that, if she were to drink juice it would be a green juice that we made fresh with kale and spinach and celery and cucumbers, parsley, lemon."
And of course, every Monster needs snacks to keep her energy up. Gaga's favorites included whole-grain pretzels, GG crispbread crackers, rice crisps, health bars, nuts, and baked chips. Bittersweet chocolate was another fave when she had a sweet craving.
O'Connor described Gaga as an "adventurous eater" who's open to pretty much anything, including the occasional rare steak or post-show glass of whiskey. "But in general she tried to stay away from anything that was super processed or made with white flour and not whole wheat or whole grain or things like that," O'Connor stressed.
That's a far cry from a steady diet of sushi and Champagne. Is it wrong that we're kind of disappointed?
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