On Friends, there are frequent references to Monica's cooking. As I think back, most of them seem to be negative. "Monica's cheesecake is dry and peely", "At least all my songs don't taste like garlic", "Push the duck. If they don't eat it, you will, and it's not very good!", "Tiny portions of pretentious food", And the episode with the bad review, the episode where Janice sends the chicken back over and over, And the episode where they are trying to decipher the chocolate chip cookie recipe, she puts down Phoebe for not detecting nutmeg (which there wasn't so Monica was wrong)

I'm wondering if it was supposed to be a running joke that Monica's food was bad, or if these are just offhand comments not too be taken too seriously? Most of these references are in later seasons, so it could have been something the writers had decided to play on.

  • 2
    The problem is, I remember just as many (if not more) references to her food being good.
    – Walt
    Oct 14, 2015 at 18:28
  • 1
    I thought the same thing, but then I started remembering the good references were early on, and as the show progressed, she seemed to get criticized more.
    – Patrick
    Oct 14, 2015 at 18:33
  • 1
    What about the episode where she took the cooking class pretending to be a novice.
    – cde
    Oct 14, 2015 at 19:11
  • I think the point is supposed to be that Monica cannot take criticism well. On the (presumably) rare occasions when someone gives her bad feedback, she comically overreacts. That's why those are the moments you remember.
    – David Z
    Nov 29, 2015 at 10:01

1 Answer 1


Actually that is not the case. There are several statements & moments that suggest Monica was good in cooking. But as every person have good days or bad days at their job, Monica has them too. Specially with cooking experiments for something new can be good or bad. And even for a best chef, someday the ratio can go wrong and they can get a bad review, doesn't mean they are bad at cooking. Here is some reason why it's clear that Monica was good.

Fake student at the rookie class for cooking

In S09E19 The One with Rachel's Dream she was the head chef of her restaurant which was doing great.

Monica's fancy restaurant Javu is doing great, so she's flat out, too badly to accept joining Chandler on a surprise trip he booked to Vermont.

In S09E03 The One with the Pediatrician

Chandler is leaving for Tulsa without Monica, because she has got a great job offer.

Great job offers don't come to incompetent people does it !!

And there were many more segments where she was appreciated for her cooking. The lines that you wrote are mainly said to her on her bad days or inside an argument to tease her, not to prove the quality of her cooking.

  • 4
    Not to mention, Monica does gourmet cooking. It could just be low brow opinions on high class food.
    – cde
    Oct 20, 2015 at 10:39
  • This is very thorough... I had forgotten about the job offer before Tulsa. I suppose it was just good comedy to tease her once in awhile.
    – Patrick
    Oct 23, 2015 at 18:23
  • 3
    "..so she's flat out, too badly to accept joining Chandler" What?
    – Kevin
    Feb 26, 2016 at 19:21

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