The chat show host made the comments during her new Netflix special standup show Relatable. The show marks the first time in 15 years that DeGeneres has performed standup.
While she has mentioned eating animal products before, during Relatable, she was extremely explicit about no longer being vegan.
DeGeneres said she was vegan, speaking about how difficult it can be to order animal-free meals in restaurants.
But then she said: "I'm not really vegan, I say it for the joke. I was vegan for eight years and I really believe that it's great for you.
"I was healthier than I'd ever been, I loved being vegan. But in the last year or two for no real reason, I started eating a piece of fish once in a while. Or I'll eat eggs from chickens I know - if they are in someone's backyard or are happy."
The revelation is a far cry from what DeGeneres - who went vegan in 2008 after watching animal rights documentary Earthlings - once said.
"50 billion animals a year are killed and I think we all fool ourselves that there is some kind of happy cow and that it's a quick death, that they just hit him in the head and that they are out," she once famously said.
"They are all in pain, they are all treated badly. They are all diseased and they are all pumped with antibiotics. It's a very disturbing reality. And it happens every minute of the day."
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are prepared in the author's capacity and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Plant Based News itself.Reuse this content
Maria is the Editor of Plant Based News. A former magazine editor, newspaper reporter, and features writer, her work has been published by The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and various regional newspapers, as well as Vegan Life magazine and Vegan Trade Journal. She has interviewed a huge range of people, from Prime Ministers to authors, activists, pop stars and actors, and enjoys the varied range of topics writing for PBN allows her to tackle. You can follow her on Twitter @MariaChiorando and Instagram @mariachiorando.
Since you're here...
Plant Based News is a FREE service that receives millions of views each week on Youtube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, our weekly newsletter and this website. This takes a lot of our personal time, money and hard work. But we do it because we KNOW it makes a difference. If those following our reporting helped by contributing, we could do even more. Please consider supporting us so we can create further awareness about animal rights, environmentalism, ethical consumerism and the plant-based lifestyle. Not a false narrative - but information that empowers people to make better choices.