‘The Golden Girls’: The Reason They Always Ate Cheesecake and Which Actor Hated It

Many of the most memorable moments on The Golden Girls involved the ladies sitting around the kitchen table late at night eating cheesecake and gabbing. The beloved TV show’s writers explain the reason why they chose cheesecake (reportedly, the actors ate more than 100 cheesecakes over the course of the show) and which actor hated the sweet, heavy dessert.

The role of cheesecake in ‘The Golden Girls’

The Golden Girls cheesecake
‘The Golden Girls’ cast | Photo Archives/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images

In The Golden Girls, Dorothy Zbornak, Rose Nylund, and ​​Blanche Devereaux often turned to one rich dessert when they wanted to talk out their issues. 

“Well, let’s slice this baby up and see if we can solve our Sophia problem,” Blanche remarks in one scene.

“Do you know how many problems we have solved over a cheesecake at this kitchen table?” Dorothy notes. “The point I was trying to make is that we have had a lot of great late-night talks right here.” 

When Rose says most of their conversations have been about sex, Blanche replies, “Well, of course, we do talk about sex, but we talk about other things too. We console each other, we help each other, we advise each other, and then we talk about sex again.”

Why did ‘The Golden Girls’ eat cheesecake?

During a Disney D23 interview celebrating The Golden Girls’ 35th anniversary, the show’s producers/screenwriters — Barry Fanaro and Mort Nathan — responded to a question about the significance of cheesecake.

“A big part of the show was the cheesecake they ate around that kitchen table. Was there a reason they picked cheesecake, and how did that continue to be a staple throughout all seven seasons of The Golden Girls?” the interviewer asked.

“I forget why it started that way,” Fanaro said, but he recalled that Bea Arthur, who played Dorothy, didn’t even like the dessert.

“Bea hated cheesecake. If you watch it carefully, you see her moving it around on the plate a lot, but it’s not that often that she puts it in her mouth,” he added. “We didn’t know.”

Cheesecake wasn’t the obvious choice, but it was funnier than ice cream


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Though the writers said they couldn’t recall the exact origins of the cheesecake on The Golden Girls, they agreed it was a perfect choice.

“Can you think of something more comforting?” Fanaro said. “That’s what that was all about — wake up in the middle of the night and eat some comfort food.”

Nathan added, “I don’t remember specifically either, but I’m sure the conversation was, as Barry said, ‘In the middle of the night, I want comfort food.’

“The obvious choice is ice cream,” he continued. “That’s what you go to … What’s a little different? Eating cheesecake at 1 in the morning is stranger, is a little more decadent. And it’s indefinable why it just seemed a little funnier.”