‘The Andy Griffith Show’: Ron Howard Revealed He ‘Hated’ One Episode for Eating Food He Despised

by Katie Maloney

According to Ron Howard of The Andy Griffith Show, it takes some serious acting skills to eat your most hated vegetable onscreen.

During an episode titled “The Pickle Story,” Aunt Bee makes what seems like a lifetime supply of pickles. Although she admits that pickle-making isn’t her strong suit, she offers all her loved ones countless jars of the marinated cucumbers as gifts.

In classic Mayberry fashion, everyone is far too polite to tell her the truth – that her pickles taste like “kerosene.” So, instead, everyone dons their most convincing happy face and downs the pickles the best they can. However, the group finds themselves in a pickle when they discover that, because of their raving reviews, Aunt Bee has decided to enter her pickles

However, there was one actor whose disdain for the pickles came most naturally. Ron Howard hated pickles – whether they were Aunt bee’s kerosene pickles or the best storebought brand. Ron Howard, was about 6 years old when he filmed “The Pickle Story.” During an interview, adult Howard reminisced about the episode.

“I hated pickles so much,” he said. “Biting those pickles was just an unbelievable burden. It was a chore, painful.”

Young Ron Howard tries to stomach some pickles on The Andy Griffith Show.

Ron Howard Said Cold Mashed Potatoes Were Better Than Pickles on The Andy Griffith Show.

But that wasn’t the first time Ron had to eat something unappetizing on screen. There were several episodes during which Opie was featured eating ice cream. However, the onset lights made the environment far too hot to use real ice cream. So, they gave Ron a cone filled with “cold, colored mashed potatoes.” Howard said, “You know licking that, that takes acting.”

The renowned film director likened it to eating what passed for ice cream on the show’s set. It was so hot on the set because of the lights that, instead of using real ice cream in scenes, he was given “cold, colored mashed potatoes. You know licking that, that takes acting.”

But even cold, colored mashed potatoes were better than pickles, according to Howard. “What I remember of the pickle episode is just all the wincing and frowning,” he said. “The acting came in trying to act like I enjoyed the pickles.”