If you haven’t used a pigtail flipper, you’re missing out. A pigtail flipper is a long piece of stainless steel with a very sharp, pointed end. This amazing grill tool allows you to pierce any type food, from vegetables to meat. With a flick of the wrist, you can easily turn the food. This is a great tool to have for handling food on a large, hot grill. Once you’ve purchased a pigtail flipper, you may never use your tongs or spatula ever again! The only problem: if you’ve never used one, how do you know which brand to buy? It’s hard to know where to get started with a brand new grilling tool.
To help narrow down the search, we tested the four top pigtail flippers on the market. We ranked each pigtail flipper by looking at their most important qualities: Strength, Ergonomics, Versatility, and Ease of Cleanup. Once we tallied up the scores, we came up with an Overall Score to rank each pigtail flipper.
All the pigtail flippers we tested performed well. Each earned a good score, making them all recommended by Pitmaster’s Choice. Take a look at the Overall Pigtail Flippers Review Scores table for an overview of each pigtail flipper. To learn more, click on each pigtail flipper to go to their individual page where we dive in with more detailed information.
Overall Pigtail Flippers Review Scores
Cave Tools BBQ Pigtail Meat Hooks
As you’d expect from Cave Tools, these pig tail flippers are solidly made, with a thick shaft and a sturdy but comfortable handle. In this particular set there’s a long one and a short one. The long one in particular keeps your hands away from the heat, the short one is slightly easier to control. You can lift and turn fairly heavy pieces of meat with them, even a full rack of ribs, and it never feels like they might bend or you’ll lose control. The actual hooks are sharp, but not so they tear into the food too much.
And afterwards, they’re probably one of the easiest things you can ever clean. Only the hook part actually touches the food, unless you’re stirring sauces or something, and so that’s the only part that gets dirty. Even if they do need a good clean, they’re fully dishwasher safe, so no problem there.
Outset Rosewood and Stainless Steel Pigtail Flipper
The first thing you’ll notice about this meat hook, apart from it’s length, is its appearance. It looks very good, with its rosewood handle and silver shaft. And even the metal hanging loop is copper to match the red of the rosewood. It also feels good in the hand, the carved handle sitting well in your palm.
Overall, this is a good looking and practical pigtail turner, not great for larger pieces of meat, but otherwise a very solid product.
Cuisinart Pigtail Meat Flipper
Despite its thin appearance, this pigtail meat hook is actually quite sturdy. The metal shaft is made from a heavier duty metal than others, which makes it lighter but stronger. I did notice some bending when flipping heavy meats like ribs, so not completely recommended for that, but it handles all but the largest of steaks with no problems.
The wooden handle of this pig tail meat turner means it shouldn’t really go in the dishwasher. But a quick wipe of the hook with some soapy water should be more than enough to get it clean. I’d say it’s probably a bit over-priced compared to others on the market, and it isn’t great for really big pieces of meat, but it does work for most other things, it looks good, and works great on bacon.
Jaccard Pig Tail Food Flipper
Pigtail meat turners are used for turning, flipping and moving food around, both on the grill and in the kitchen. They can also be used for dipping food in batter, etc. without losing the food in the liquid. There’s a set of two here, a long one for reaching over the heat without burning yourself, and a shorter one for more precise control and easier dipping.
One very good thing about these pig tail BBQ flippers is, if you get the version with wooden handles, they’re lacquered for protection, which means they can go in the dishwasher after use. Other manufacturers take note. So they’re very easy to clean, not that they’re difficult anyway.
Frequently Asked Questions
When Should You Use the Long and Short Pigtail Flippers?
The long pigtail flipper is great for flipping ribs, steaks, chicken, and other large barbecue items. The short flipper is more ideal for smaller items like bacon and wings. The flippers can be used together to flip really large items like roasts or awkwardly shaped items like corn on the cob.
Can Left-Handed People use Right-Handed Pigtail Flippers?
Some pigtail flippers can be ordered as left-handed or right-handed flippers. If the brand you want doesn’t make a left-handed flipper, most left-handed people report that they can use a right-handed flipper with little or no difficulty.
How Does a Pigtail Flipper Work?
The pigtail flipper is a long, stainless steel rod with a very sharp hook at the end. The hook lightly pierces your food and allows you to turn it quickly and easily with the flick of a wrist. This one tool eliminates the need for multiple utensils and can replace your tongs, spatula, and forks while grilling.
When Should You Use a Pigtail Flipper Instead of Tongs or a Spatula?
The pigtail flipper can be used anytime you might reach for your tongs or a spatula. It can handle any grilled item, from large racks of ribs to corn on the cob. It won’t squeeze the juices out of your food like tongs and it won’t scrape up grease like a spatula. The length of the long pigtail flipper is especially helpful when turning items on a large grill.
Will The Pigtail Flipper Poke Holes in Your Meat and Cause It to be Less Juicy?
The pigtail flipper is so sharp that any holes that it pokes in the meat are small and won’t cause any loss of juices. The best way to make sure that your meat is juicy is to cook it the appropriate amount of time and let it rest for at least 5 minutes before slicing it.