Phoebe Buffay Vegetarian

How Phoebe Buffay Represents the Struggles w/ Vegetarianism



“I love cheese too much to give it up!” // “I can’t live without bacon.”

Excuses – we’ve all got them. These are just a few of the main reasons why individuals cannot stick/will not try vegetarianism. As you know by now (hopefully), The Friendly Fig is accepting of all lifestyles. We understand that veganism or even vegetarianism may not be the choice diet for everyone. We’re not here to judge – we’re just here to nudge. And by nudge, I mean just a nudge towards a healthier, happier lifestyle. We’re just trying to to spread awareness, positive vibes, and good food to those who stick around and listen.

As I wrap up my Friends marathon *sobs*, I have to say that I really found Phoebe’s vegetarian ways fascinating. There were times when I was like “HELL YEAH PHOEBE!” and yes, times when I put my hands over my face and said “Oh no… Phoebs!” On more than one occasion, Phoebe is faced with eating meat (and yes, even gives in). This happens to a lot of people who are just starting out, and we’re here to tell you: IT’S NORMAL! It’s not about being perfect, but about doing the least harm and most good. So I thought it might be fun to go over the few instances in which Phoebe Buffay represents the majority.

First and foremost, I think we all know the biggie: Phoebe eating meat during her pregnancy. I know that this is a super controversial topic and I am not going to dabble in it much. I will just say that I believe you must do what is best for yourself and the health of your baby, first and foremost. If you can do that while remaining vegan/vegetarian, that is amazing. If not, this may be one of those exceptions. At any rate, in “The One With The Fake Party,” Phoebe really tries! She even opts for meat substitutes. It isn’t until she gets sick over a soy burger that she realizes she needs to give the babies what they crave.

The best part of this episode? JOEY GIVING UP MEAT FOR PHOEBE. The world is balanced again. Oh, Joey, you big sweetheart!


While this may not pertain to a vegetarian diet, I did scream my head off cringe when Phoebe initially kept the fur coat. She repels it at first, but then sees herself in it. Blah. I have to say, this one did go up my ass sideways – sorry for that, but it did. Thankfully the episode ended with her giving the coat to someone off the street after seeing squirrels – I knew she’d come around eventually. But yeah, that one hurt.

In the episode, “The One With Ross’s Inappropriate Song,” she’s faced with Mike’s stuffy parents (oh… and Paul Rudd as Mike… LOVE). Of course, they make veal. Veal. Great. Poor thing tries to be polite but can’t do it. Thank God, because his parents are a-holes. Thankfully, she got her revenge.

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Yeah, we’ve all been there. Out to dinner at a friend or family member’s house and they have a ton of meat and no salad to spare. What do we do in situations like this? That’s a personal choice, and a tough one at that. That’s why it’s super important to make mention of your dietary restrictions beforehand, if at all possible. Don’t ever feel like you are being rude, either! No one should feel offended by your own personal decisions and beliefs. That just ain’t right!

On the opposing side of things, Phoebe was also pretty hardcore at times. I mean… singing songs about factory farms to kiddos?


That was a cringe-worthy moment, but it’s the thought that counts, Phoebs! Oh, and we totally related in “The One With the Stripper,” when Dr. Leonard Green takes out Rachel and Phoebe.

Dr. Leonard Green: Why don’t I order everyone the Mandarin chicken?
Phoebe: I don’t eat meat.
Dr. Leonard Green: It’s chicken!
Phoebe: Yeah, well, I don’t eat that either.

Oof, that’s bad, Dr. Green. And speaking of the Greens… oh, Rachel. Rachel and her trifle. Joey may have loved it, but everyone else was pretty turned off by that disaster. Fortunately for Phoebs, she had an excuse. She asks, “Is it made with beef or eggplant?” while well aware that it was made with beef. “I can’t have any. You know I don’t eat meat. Awe.” #wellplayed

Regardless of how you feel about Phoebe’s choices or decisions throughout Friends, we can all at least admit that we have faced some of the same challenges or similar at some point or another. When we’re living in a meat-centric world, it can be hard to stand your ground. Just remember that you are the one who calls the shots. You are in charge of your body and what you put into it. Do what feels right for you. Always do you, gf.

So remember folks:


And Phoebs, thanks for showing us that we’re all human, but we can still do the best we can. xx bianca


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