Flippers are a tool used for flipping food over in a frying pan, on a griddle or on a girdle. Occasionally they are also used for serving with. You can also use them to scrape pans with.
They consist of a long handle with a completely flat shovel at the end. The shovel part can be a somewhat elongated square, or very long and rectangular.
They can be made of metal or plastic. Plastic ones are safest to use on non-stick pans, even though some modern non-stick pans say that metal is fine.
Flippers with flexible shovel ends are better at sliding under delicate things (such as fried eggs.)
Flippers are called many different things by many different people. Many people will call it by one name one day, and the next day, based on what they are using it for at that particular moment, call it something different.
Here are some common names:
- cooking spatula (presumably to different it from the rubber ones used for preparing the food)
- flipper (the “flipper” name comes from the act of “flipping”)
- hamburger flipper
- pancake flipper
- egg flipper
- egg lifter
- egg slice
- egg turner
- metal spatula
Some wags have suggested a new standard name of “food inverter.”
For slotted Flippers, see the entry on “Fish Slice.”