March 14, 2018 01:50 PM

Don’t leave Kristin Cavallari‘s kids out of donut day!

The former reality star — whose new cookbook, True Roots: A Mindful Kitchen with More Than 100 Recipes Free of Gluten, Dairy, and Refined Sugar, comes out next month — dished to PEOPLE about how she and husband Jay Cutler handle meals for their kids: daughter Saylor James, 2, plus sons Jaxon Wyatt, 3½, and Camden Jack, 5½.

“We’re not as strict as I think everyone may think we are,” admits the mother of three, 31. “We’ve been getting my kids donuts pretty much every weekend and we don’t think twice about it.”

“I’m not so strict with them that they’re gonna go to a friend’s house and then go to college and just completely go the other way,” Cavallari explains. “I’m realistic too, and I want them to be kids and enjoy everything that comes with being a kid.”

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Kristin Cavallari and daughter Saylor
Kristin Cavallari/Instagram
Kristin Cavallari with sons Jaxon and Camden
Kristin Cavallari/Instagram

RELATED: Kristin Cavallari Slams Critics Who Say Her Young Sons Are Too Skinny

The Hills alum reveals that chow time at her home is usually a pretty straightforward affair. “I’ve been doing chicken fingers for them at school and put a little thing of ranch which they love,” she says.

“Kids are very simple. If there’s tomato sauce on it, they’ll eat it,” Cavallari adds. “They love meatballs and pasta and we eat all that stuff. Just the types that we eat — like the pasta, for example — I make brown rice or quinoa or lentil pasta instead of white-flour pasta, so there’s healthy swaps you can do.”

Kristin Cavallari
Kevin Mazur/WireImage

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On top of the excitement over her Uncommon James spring collection, Cavallari can’t wait to release her cookbook — something she calls “a passion project” that she’s thankful to have NFL star Cutler around to help her with.

“I’m just glad my husband is done with football so he can take care of the kids right now with everything going on,” she tells PEOPLE.

True Roots: A Mindful Kitchen with More Than 100 Recipes Free of Gluten, Dairy, and Refined Sugar is out April 3, and available for pre-order now on

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