Claire Holt Serves Up Nutella Pancakes And Vampire Diaries Memories - Exclusive Interview

We got our first glimpse of Claire Holt (mermaid tail and all) when she was cast as only a kid on Nickelodeon's "H2O: Just Add Water." Growing up in the spotlight and receiving such worldwide exposure is something that has changed her life forever. She's now become an iconic character that will live forever, too — literally. Rebekah Mikaelson is an immortal who can never die.


Since we last saw her in "The Vampire Diaries" and its spin-off "The Originals," Mikaelson has traded in her vampire fangs and is sinking her teeth into the food space. This week, the mother of two will be sharing her favorite kid-friendly recipes for World Nutella Day, coming up on February 5. 

Honestly, we couldn't imagine a more delicious holiday, so we had to snag Holt's sweet recipes and ask her all about what she's been up to since we last saw her onscreen. In an exclusive interview with The List, Holt shared her kids' favorite way to eat Nutella, opened up about growing up on camera, and revealed what she snagged from "The Vampire Diaries" set.

Claire Holt talks all about her kid-approved Nutella pancakes

I want to talk about your partnership with Nutella, because yum! What's your all-time favorite Nutella recipe?

I love the classic traditional Nutella on toast. Nutella on a pancake. That's my favorite. I like it as a spread, and I got to make a pancake recipe for this partnership that went perfectly with Nutella, in my humble opinion, so it was really — it was really fun.


And that's something you're going to be sharing on Instagram this week?

Yes, I will.

World Nutella Day is coming up on February 5, and people from all over the world will be sharing their recipes online. Since starting this partnership, is there a way to eat Nutella that you've come across that you had just never thought about before?

Well, I went to the Nutella Cafe in Chicago, which was a childhood dream. I got to try the Nutella crepes, the Nutella banana bread, fruit dipped in Nutella. They were all delicious. My favorite one was the crepes by far. It was so yummy.

What's a sweet way that we can incorporate Nutella into Valentine's Day? Because that's coming up soon, too.

I think you've got to do the dipped fruit, the strawberries in the Nutella. Delicious. That's a romantic thing, isn't it? Dipping fruit in chocolate. Giving it to your lover. [Laughs]


I'm getting so hungry right now. It was a bad idea not to eat before this.

I know. You've always got to be well-fed before you have a conversation like this. Otherwise, you're going to be running to your cupboard.

As a mom, what's a great kid-friendly, kid-approved way that you've found to incorporate Nutella?

I made almond flour pancakes, which are really nice and healthy pancakes and nice and fluffy, taste like traditional pancakes, and then a nice little spread of Nutella on top. My kids get to have Nutella on special occasions like this. It was really fun, and they loved it.

Here's how motherhood changed how Claire Holt's views acting

You became a mom just a couple years ago and took some time away from acting to spend time with your kids. Has becoming a mom influenced the types of acting roles you take on today?

Totally, and for a number of reasons. The main reason is that a lot of the time, you shoot in a location that's not where you live. I wanted to spend as much of the early days, months, years with my kids as I could, without getting on a plane every week or being away from them for extended periods.


Also, I think [when] being a mom, you connect to the different side of yourself. I think you become more in touch with your emotions. You learn more about yourself, and that makes you understand yourself more. I think that helps with acting, and you're definitely attracted to different roles.

I think I'm getting ready to brave that world again because I love it. I always have, and I think the roles will — being a mom, I hope, will help me with that.

Will we ever see her return as Rebekah Mikaelson?

How did it feel to return as Rebekah Mikaelson in "Legacies" just this last year?

It was awesome. Rebekah, I feel like I know her so well. She's my longest relationship. It was 2011 that I started playing her.


She's such an amazing character, because she's so layered, and she's a badass, and she's strong, and she doesn't take no for an answer, but she's also flawed and really connects with the emotional side that I have as well.

I really love getting to go back and play her again, and I hope to have another chance to do it.

So do you have to do anything to prepare for playing her again? Or is it just natural to you at this point?

She's in me now. You know? I'm so familiar with — and I think that's a credit to the writers, right? They are so used to how I've played her for so long, that the way that they write her is just like who she is. I feel like when I get to go back, it's not like stepping into the shoes of a stranger. It's like stepping into the shoes of an old friend.


I feel like her story hasn't really even ended yet. Will we be seeing her again soon? Are you up for that?

I hope so. I don't want to say anything that's going to get me thrown into jail. Television jail. [Laughs] But, we have to sign all kinds of things, and we're not allowed to talk about it, but I hope, you know? I've been playing her for so many years now. I always pray that there's an opportunity that I'll get to play her again.

The scene that sent shivers down her spine on The Originals

What is one of the most intense scenes you remember having to do as Rebekah Mikaelson?

There's one that totally sticks out, because it was so cold. I remember, because I was in Chicago visiting the Nutella Cafe for this partnership [Laughs], and it made me think about this time where we were shooting in an old asylum, I believe it was in Milledgeville, Georgia, and it was 12 degrees outside. I was not dressed for 12 degrees, because I think that the time we were shooting for was, like, fall or something. I was in jeans and a long sleeve shirt and a light-ish jacket.


I remember having to lie on the ground outside. I'd just been staked [Laughs] and trying not to move, because I was supposed to be dead, and it was so cold. I couldn't stop shivering, and they were like, "Claire, we can see you shivering." [Laughs] I'm like, "I don't know what to do, guys. I'm so sorry. It's freezing."

I have so many amazing memories from that show, but that's the one that this partnership brought up for me, because Chicago in the winter is equally as cold.

Claire Holt explains why she didn't keep her vampire teeth

You played Rebekah for a long period of your life, but also throughout hundreds of different decades on the show. Do you have a favorite look or costume from playing her? Because we got to see so many time periods.


I loved when we did the '20s. That was really fun to go back and dress up like that. I did not love any of the time periods where I had to wear a corset, because for some reason they always coincided with Atlanta in the summer, which is very hot. [Laughs] We'd be in these tight costumes and big gowns in 90, 100 degrees.

I love modern day Rebekah. She's always wearing great fashion. I think — Yeah, the '20s and then the modern Rebekah were my favorites.

Was there anything that you kept from either "The Originals" or "The Vampire Diaries?" I heard that the vampire teeth that you wore were formed to your teeth. Did you get to keep those?

They were, but I didn't get to keep them. You know why? Because you speak with a ridiculous lisp with those teeth in. [Laughs] They looked fine on camera, but when you go out and about with them on — Well, I don't know why anymore would go out and about with them on, but when you put them in for a laugh, you're not scary in the slightest. I did not keep the teeth.


I got to keep some great coats, actually. Rebekah always had these awesome black jeans, so when we finished shooting, they let me take home some of the long coats and black jeans, which is right up my alley.

The H2O: Just Add Water star opens up about growing up on camera

It reminds me of when you wore the tail in "H2O: Just Add Water." I also read that those were formed to all of you as well. Is that something that you got to keep from that set?

No, I don't know where I'd even store that thing. It's enormous.


They did a massive body cast of us the first week before shooting ... I guess it was a bit longer than that. They molded those tails to us. They were really amazing and intricate, and I think they were made out of wetsuit material on the inside, and then they zipped us up, and we would have to get carried into the water, because they were so heavy.

That was amazing. It was really a cool experience doing that. It was something that I still, to this day, think about.

What was it like to grow up on TV?

It's not ideal to have the entire world get to see you go through puberty. [Laughs] It's not really something that you want immortalized, but it was great. I met some of my best friends in the world. Phoebe [Tonkin] to this day, I still talk to her all the time.


I never would've had that experience had someone not taken a chance on me. I had no idea what I was doing. I only got the job because I knew how to swim, I guess, so it was amazing. I'm so lucky. I'm so fortunate. I get to do what I love. I've had this career where I've played so many different characters, and I'm really passionate about it.

There are elements where you're like, "Oh, gosh, that fashion wasn't great. Or that hairstyle could've been better. Or maybe I don't need the whole world to see me at 16." But, at the end of the day, it's such a blessing and a gift. I'm really grateful.

Claire Holt has her fans to thank for getting her through tough days

You have such a dedicated following online, as well as with the series and the spin-offs that you've been a part of. Do you have a most memorable fan story?

I don't have a specific one, but the thing that really sticks out for me is that they're so nice. Everyone is really loving, and they want to tell you how this character has affected their lives or maybe helped them get through a hard time. What a beautiful gift that is for me to be able to hear that, because I was lucky.


There were probably 50 other girls out there who could have played Rebekah, and I was in the right place at the right time. I got the job, and I'm so lucky and grateful. The fact that she spoke to so many people, and that I get to hear these stories is — I think about it all the time.

I'm really grateful for the fans, because they've been supportive of me through my career and also becoming a mom and helping me navigate that. When I talk about the struggles of parenthood and motherhood, there are so many people out there, being like, "That happened to me too," or "You'll get sleep eventually," or coaching me through the whole thing. That's really beautiful to be able to connect with so many people and hear so many stories.


It's interesting to see that your followers have inspired you as well.

For sure. I remember when I first had James, and I was learning how to breastfeed. I thought it was the hardest thing on planet Earth. I thought I was an absolute failure, and I was never going to do it right, and he was going to starve.

I remember posting something saying, like, "This is so hard. I didn't realize. I'm constantly feeling like a failure." Then all of these people are like, "Stick at it. It's okay. Or stop if it's not right for you." There was so much encouragement. I think about it all the time, that people step up for you.

If you're vulnerable — and we're all people, right? We're all searching for connection and understanding and shared experiences. If you just say, "I'm struggling. I need help," there are so many people out there who are willing to step up and be that help for you.

Here's what's coming up next for Claire Holt

You've been in entertainment, fashion, skin care, and now you're in the food space. What's coming up next for you? What kind of goals do you have? Aside from having many more children that you talk about on Instagram.


[Laughs] I joke about that. I don't know. I feel so lucky to have two healthy children, so, sometimess I think that we're good, and we're a great little family as we are.

But it's interesting. This year, I tried to change my perspective, and I've spent a lot of my life apologizing for who I — It's weird. I don't want to say "apologizing," but I felt like, "Oh, I'm not qualified to do this," or "I don't know enough about that," or "I didn't study this," or "I'm not good enough at that," or "I'm not doing a good enough job." I really tried to switch my mindset this year to, "I am good enough, and I can learn, and I can do all the things that I think."

I don't have to be one thing. I don't have to just be a mother. I can be a mother and an actress and an investor. I can connect with people, and I can be creative. I'm really trying to come from that place this year. It's been amazing, the opportunities that come out of it when you really believe in yourself and you give yourself the chance to try new things.


I'm really enjoying investing and working with brands. I'd love to eventually get back into acting when the right role comes about, and one that allows me to spend the time I want to spend with my family, but also do what I love.

I'm really happy about where I'm at, and I'm always learning and open to new ideas. I think what's been the coolest thing is realizing that I don't have to just be one thing, and I don't have to be overqualified as one thing. I can learn, and I can fail, and I can get better and try again. There are a lot of doors that open when you have that mindset.

Foodie fans need to watch her social media this week

What are we going to see over the course of this week on social media from you regarding Nutella?

Well, I've come up with a really great pancake recipe that I think everyone's going to like. My first pancake was terrible. After about 50 of them, I finally nailed it. [Laughs] My kids loved them, and I loved them. We had such a fun time making them, so I'll share a little bit about that experience, which I hope people like.


Oh, I can't wait. I'm getting so hungry, I'm going to be honest with you right now.

Go and get lunch. Go on, get out of here. Get well-fed. Go have some Nutella right now.

Head on over to Instagram to get Claire Holt's Nutella pancakes recipe and to see more of her love for the hazelnut spread. Fans can also share their favorite ways to eat Nutella by sharing them on Twitter @Nutelladay or using #WorldNutellaDay.