12 Surprising Things Most People Don’t Know About The Royal Family’s Eating Habits

by Jess Catcher
Jess grew up in Oklahoma before moving to New York to become a writer. She has a cat named Agnes.

When it comes to eating habits, you probably expect the royal family to be pretty hoity-toity as they dine exclusively on fancy caviar and the finest champagne.

You’d only be about half right — Queen Elizabeth reportedly does enjoy a nice glass of champagne as a nightcap before bed most days, but otherwise she and her family have surprisingly normal palates and habits when their tummies grumble.

Of course, the royals also have a kitchen full of a staff ready to whip up anything they might have a craving for, which isn’t exactly something most of us can rely on in our homes.

You might be shocked by which members of the royal family like to roll up their own sleeves in the kitchen — and what ingredient you will absolutely never find served in a royal dish.

Take a look and let us know if we missed any of the royal family’s unique eating habits you’ve heard about.

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Right Thumbnail Photo: Max Pixel

royal banquet

It’s difficult to imagine the royal family sitting down for a small meal, but they do have to eat even when there isn’t a formal event to attend, of course.

That said, some of these eating habits likely apply to both types of occasions.

1. The Queen Is All About The Leftovers

queen elizabeth

She is so against wasting any leftovers that she makes sure to have the kitchen staff reuse any uneaten servings for other meals rather than throwing them out.

According to former chef Darren McGrady, The Queen once even sent back a lemon garnish because she thought it was a waste of perfectly good fruit that should be used as more than decoration.

2. Prince Philip Enjoys Dinner On The Go

prince philip

Darren also described the Duke of Edinburgh as a “foodie” who enjoys whipping up hearty meals like venison tenderloin or grilling up barbecue when the weather is nice.

He’s also always prepared to make something on the go with his handy electric frying pan packed up for every trip they take away from the palace walls.

3. Garlic Is Strictly Prohibited


Former chef Carolyn Robb explained in an interview with Racked that this is likely due to the family’s frequent meetings with important public figures, so they need to make sure they never have bad breath from the pungent flavor of garlic and other similarly strong odor foods.

4. They Aren't Supposed To Eat Shellfish


This is an old rule that most of the modern royals have been known to break. It was established due to shellfish’s notorious reputation for making people sick easily, something that the reigning royal would obviously want to avoid.

5. Prince Charles Is Fussy About His Eggs

soft boiled egg

Though representatives for the royals tried to deny the rumors about the prince’s persnickety egg preferences, his former personal chef, Mervyn Wycherley, admitted that the kitchen would have Charles’ security detail signal them when he was making his way back home for tea time so that they would be able to perfectly prepare his afternoon snack by boiling the egg for exactly four minutes.

“I always kept three pans boiling,” Mervyn revealed to The Gaurdian, “just to be safe.”

6. The Young Princes Got To Have Unhealthy Food

diana and harry

Despite her own healthy preferences, Diana wanted to make sure her sons experienced “normal” food like burgers and pizza and, according to chef Darren, who remained with her and the boys after her divorce from Charles, occasionally treated them to the “junk food” against their nanny’s wishes.

7. Prince Charles Doesn't Like To Share His Meals

prince charles

Darren also revealed that Charles, who dines mostly on organic dishes from his personal garden and game he’s hunted himself, is not keen on giving others a taste of what’s on his plate.

In fact, in his interview with Telegraph, the chef explained that the staff keeps his meals entirely separate from the rest of the royal family.

8. The Queen Won't Eat Potatoes Or Pasta


Rather than potatoes or pasta as a side dish, Darren told CTV that Elizabeth prefers lighter dishes like a large salad or vegetables with her meals, usually a simple dish of grilled fish or chicken.

9. The Queen Has Quite The Sweet Tooth

chocolate biscuit cake

Particularly when it comes to her favorite treat: Chocolate biscuit cake.

According to Darren’s interview with Recipe Plus, she even takes along a slice whenever she makes a trip away from home, whether it’s a long journey or short jaunt.

10. The Queen Doesn't Peel Bananas With Her Hands


Darren revealed that Elizabeth remains ever the dignified woman while snacking on bananas, starting by slicing the ends off and then slicing down the peel, before cutting them into bite-sized portions with a fork.

11. Kate Likes Home Cooking

william and kate with family

Chef Carolyn also spilled the beans to Racked that, unlike the rest of the royal family, the duchess has done the majority of cooking for herself, William, and their children — something she’s done since their wedding back in 2011.

12. Everyone Has To Stop Eating When The Queen Does

royal table

This only applies to fancy dinner parties and events, but if Philip is craving a second helping after Elizabeth has finished her own meal, he’s out of luck. The rule applies to everyone in her presence, even if they are married or related.

I wonder if she keeps them to that rule when the family is enjoying a quiet meal at home!

Were you surprised by any of the royal eating habits?

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