Why Ted Allen Thinks Everyone Should Own A Fish Spatula

If you had to make a list of your favorite kitchen equipment, what would you include? Many cooks, both professional and amateur alike, might be inclined to mention a grater, a chef's knife, a heavy-duty cast iron skillet, and a powerful blender, among other items — and that's not counting trendier items such as air fryers and Instant Pots.

If Christmas came early and you wanted to ask Santa — or a loved one — for one more piece of cooking equipment, would you think to request a fish spatula? If your answer is no, you might want to reconsider: These thin, flexible spatulas are a favorite among cooking professionals for their versatility. Not just for flipping fish — though they do excel at that task — fish spatulas are so beloved in the food industry that most professional kitchens have them on hand and kitchen staff use the tool so much they abbreviate its name to "fish spat" (via Fine Cooking). As it turns out, food writer, cookbook author, and "Chopped" host Ted Allen loves a good fish spatula and thinks you should, too.

Ted Allen loves the versatility of a fish spatula

If you've never had the pleasure of flipping a fish filet with a fish spatula, then you might not know that this specially designed, thinner version of a standard metal spatula does an excellent job, sliding under the fish without tearing its delicate skin and flesh (via Food & Wine). But according to "Chopped" host Ted Allen — and many other cooking pros — a fish spatula is capable of so many more kitchen tasks.

"If you don't have a fish spatula, get one immediately — it's my favorite," Allen told People. "It has a thin, almost-sharp edge, so it's great for flipping, stirring, cutting and getting that first brownie or piece of lasagna out of the pan." Fine Cooking agrees, stating that the utensil is handy for accomplishing a wide variety of tasks around the kitchen, from transferring freshly baked cookies to a cooling rack to flipping grilled cheese sandwiches to maneuvering fried items such as fritters or latkes, as the spatula's widely spaced tines will allow more oil to drain away. 

Fish spatulas are commonly available at cookware stores, so you might want to grab one the next time you're out shopping.