This article looks at how a fight scene set in a kitchen could use its environment creatively.

Weapon Name: Uh…kitchen utensils. I don’t think there’s a formal name for these.

This is a noble and ancient style of combat.

Description: The random objects you find in the average kitchen. For this article, we gathered a bunch and then tried to spar with them. Yes, that was as much fun as it sounds.

Where Can You Get One? Your kitchen. Any household supply store.

Natural Genres: Modern-day stories set in a house, apartment, or restaurant.

Unnatural Genres: Anything else.

What’s It For? The same things regular weapons are for, except way sillier.

Range: Short to Medium

How Long Can You Fight With It? Since this involves a lot of improvisation, characters wouldn’t be as lethal to each other as they would with actual weapons. The fight scene could stretch for several minutes.

What Muscles Wear Out First: Depends on what objects they’re using. But probably anything that gets hit with a frying pan.

Lethal: Some objects more than others. The heavier or sharper the thingie, the more lethal it is.

Can it leave enemy debilitated but alive long enough to deliver a monologue? I really doubt it.

Learning Curve: None. If someone has martial arts training, they can use the kitchen objects more effectively, but it takes no special skill to pick up a kettle and chuck it at someone.

Nifty Fact for Authenticity: A full refrigerator door opens slower than an empty one (tested at home). If your character flings the door open to strike an opponent, that might affect how much force they can deal.

Will You Hurt Yourself With It? Depends on the object. With a knife, it’s possible. With a wooden spoon, it would take serious effort.


Things Your Characters Can Do With It:

For this part of the article, we’ll look at different kitchen utensils and possible applications for each one.

1. Pots and Pans: Smack things.

2. Chopsticks: Poke things.

3. Spices and/or Anything in a Spray Can: Throw in faces.

This is a great distraction technique. It also makes the fight scene smell nice.

4. Cookie Sheet: Use as a shield.

5. Can Opener: Flick the wrist to open it like a flail. Or nunchuks.

This works better than you’d think, but it requires extremely close range.

6. Spatula: Launch projectiles.

7. Whisk: Tangle in hair.

It’s probably more efficient to just pull the hair with hands.

8. Ladle: Use as blunt weapon.

Almost anything that can be done with a baseball bat can be done with a heavy enough ladle.

9. Teapot: Punch.

Afterward, you can make tea and have witty repartee.

10. Knife: Anything discussed in this post on knives and daggers.

11. Chopsticks 2: Duel.

Yes, the chopsticks are lightsaber-shaped. Buy them here.

Things Your Characters Cannot Do With It:

1. Attack with a cheese grater. The opponent will have plenty of time to get out of the way before this starts to deal damage.

See how she just looks mildly annoyed?

2. Use a toaster as a flail. As much as I really want this to be possible, I’m not willing to test it on my own toaster, as I suspect swinging it around would make the cord fall out. Sadness.

3. Attack with a pizza cutter.

Yes, the pizza cutter is shaped like the starship Enterprise. Buy it here.

4. Remove limbs. Still not happening, guys.

5. Throw food and win. Competent villains will not be distracted by a food fight. (If the food in question is a watermelon, this might work better.)

6. Use a crockpot as a weapon. It’s just too heavy to wield.

7. Anything using a wooden spoon.

We tried really hard to come up with a combat use for this, but we’ve got nothing. Ladles are just better.


A fight scene in a kitchen offers a diverse array of potential weapons, some awesome, some hilarious. Be creative when writing scenes in this type of setting. You can pull legit choreography out of unlikely weapon choices. The ladle and the frying pan are the most user-friendly and sturdy of the options listed here, though the can opener makes a pretty good sneak-attack weapon. Avoid box graters and pizza cutters, which are more trouble than they’re worth.

This information is provided for assistance in writing fight scenes only, not for real-life application.

Next week: Stances and body language in fight scenes!

What weapon should I feature after that?
Suggest one in the comments!

6 thoughts on “Weapon of the Week: Kitchen Utensils

  1. Spices:: “This is a great distraction technique. It also makes the fight scene smell nice.” Hehe. That’s actually a key note to make. Using sensory details in writing, specially when you’re getting it all up in your face and nose, is a good thing to add in.


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