Left 4 Dead Wiki

"Well somebody's gonna make them some zombie grits!"
"Nobody better not make a crack about me being in the kitchen!"

The Frying Pan, also known as the Skillet, is a close combat weapon seen in Left 4 Dead 2. It is primarily found in kitchens and nearby (discarded) cookware.

It can be found in the following campaigns:

Melee Mechanics[]

Melee weapons replace Pistols in the secondary weapon slot. Unlike Pistols, close combat weapons never need to be reloaded and cannot run out of ammo (excluding the Chainsaw). They have two main drawbacks: a limited reach and (with a few exceptions) relatively long cooldown periods. Close combat weapons cause minimal friendly fire damage to the Survivors, even on Advanced and Expert difficulty levels (the Chainsaw is an exception).

These weapons are extremely effective. All melee weapons, on all difficulties, kill Common Infected and most Special Infected in one hit, aside from the Charger (which takes two—but see point below), the Witch (which takes four), and the Tank (which takes twenty, excluding the Chainsaw). Due to their death effects, it is generally advised to melee neither the Boomer (unless there is no choice) nor the Spitter (unless it is possible to move away immediately from the resulting acid splash).

The melee weapons appear to do more damage if an Infected's head or upper body is targeted. With the correct timing it is possible to kill a Charger with one hit while it is charging, allowing a Survivor to "level" a charge without first dealing damage to the Charger and to gain the achievement "Level a Charge".

The Frying Pan is classified as a bludgeoning weapon. It spews blood on the screen, but never dismantles or mutilates the Infected. It also sends the Infected's body flying a small distance.

Pros and Cons[]


  • High spawn rate.
  • Stumbles crowds of Infected relatively easily.
  • Attacks are less obstructive to the user's vision.


  • Short reach.
  • One of the slowest melee weapons.
  • Cannot be used to cut a Smoker's tongue.
  • Not recommended for killing Boomers due to bile showering attacker and any nearby Survivors.
  • Its loud hit sound effect may hinder other sounds.


Main article: Achievements

Confedaracy of crunches.jpg
Finish a campaign using only melee weapons.

Tank burger.jpg
Kill a Tank with melee weapons.

Beat the rush.jpg
In a Survival round, get a medal only using melee weapons.

Club dead.jpg
Use every melee weapon to kill Common Infected.

Level a charge.jpg
Kill a Charger with a melee weapon while they are charging.


Main article: Tactics
  • A good strategy for using the Frying Pan (and any other melee weapon) against a small horde is to shove them back, hit them with the Pan, then repeat the process. This keeps the Infected constantly stunned and unable to attack you, while you slowly pick them off. Bear in mind your character will eventually get exhausted from shoving, unless the game is on Easy Mode.
  • Unlike most other melee weapons, the Frying Pan is usually found in predictable areas, such as a kitchen. Moreover, they are often accessible at the beginning of certain campaigns. This allows players to use frying pans as melee weapon if no other desirable pistols or other melee weapons are available.
  • Like all melee weapons, the frying pan has a short range of attack. It is hence unwise to attack a Boomer with the weapon because of its after-death bile effect. A good tactic against Boomers would be to shove them away to a safe distance, then switch to a firearm, backpedal, and dispatch it.


Ellis holding Frying Pan in "Swamp Fever"

  • The weapon is possibly a reference to a promotional video for the 2009 film Zombieland where survivor Rule #6 is a "Cast Iron Skillet". In the video this weapon is noted for its killing potential, close-range functionality and use as a cooking utensil for post-zombie encounters.
  • In Left 4 Dead, there are many unusable frying pans throughout the game mostly in kitchens or safe rooms. However, in the ported versions Frying Pans are spawned close to where they can be used, for example before an up-coming Crescendo Event.
  • Both Common and Special Infected (excluding the Tank) have a tendency to fly back when killed with a Frying Pan. This characteristic is shared with the Nightstick and the Shovel.
  • The Frying Pan does not spawn in "Dead Center", "The Passing", "Dark Carnival" and some ported Left 4 Dead campaigns even though there are kitchens in these campaigns (e.g. the apartments in "No Mercy" and the hotel kitchen in "Dead Air") where it would be logical to encounter this weapon.
  • The Frying Pan was rated 7th in the Left 4 Dead 2 Top 10 FTW Weapons on Machinima.
  • The Frying Pan, the Nightstick, and the Shovel are the only melee weapons that cannot decapitate or dismember Common Infected.
  • Ellis will usually reference making "zombie grits" with the Frying Pan. Grits are a very popular Southern dish made of ground-up corn similar to polenta and cooked in much the same way using a frying pan.
  • The Frying Pan was a launch promotion for Left 4 Dead 2. Players received it as a weapon in Team Fortress 2 if they purchased Left 4 Dead 2 before Thursday, October, 7th 2010. This promotion was later extended indefinitely. Team Fortress players purchasing L4D2 during the launch period also received Ellis' hat.
  • In the Bot Trust trailer for Portal 2, a prototype Atlas can be seen attempting to make pancakes using the Frying Pan from Left 4 Dead 2.
  • In Left 4 Dead 2, Nick is the only Survivor able to refer to the Frying Pan as a "skillet". "Skillet" is the American-English word for a Frying Pan whilst the term "Frying Pan" is used in Britain, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and other parts of the British Commonwealth outside North America.
  • The Frying Pan is the only weapon that has an action-caption: hitting an Infected or another Survivor will cause the [Clang!] caption to appear. Ellis sometimes lampshades this fact when he says "Spang!" upon picking up this weapon.
  • A Frying Pan will always appear inside The Tunnel and The Train Station safe rooms in the ported version of Blood Harvest.
    • The Frying Pan is extremely common in The Parish; it will always spawn at the kitchen area in The Waterfront (for example).
    • It is also guaranteed to spawn at the starting safe room in The Park.
  • The Frying Pan makes an appearance in Dying Light as part of the Dying Light — Left 4 Dead 2 Weapon Pack DLC released on October 25th, 2019, alongside the Golf Club and the Guitar.

External Links[]

Primary Weapons
Tier 1 Chrome invert.png Chrome Shotgun / Pump invert.png Pump Shotgun / MP5 Invert.png MP5 / Mac10 invert.png Silenced Submachine Gun / Uzi invert.png Submachine Gun
Tier 2 Ak invert.png AK-47 / Icon weapon rifle desert inverted.png Combat Rifle / M16 invert.png M-16 Assault Rifle / SIG Invert.png SG 552 / Auto invert.png Auto Shotgun / Spas12 invert.png Combat Shotgun / AWSM Invert.png AWP / Hunting invert.png Hunting Rifle / Steyr Invert.png Scout / G3 invert.png Sniper Rifle
Special Tier Grenade launcher inverted.png Grenade Launcher / M60Icon.png M60 Machine Gun
Secondary Weapons
Sidearms Pistol inverted.png M1911 Pistol / Deagle invert.png Magnum Pistol / Pistol inverted.png P220 Pistol
Melee Weapons Bat invert.png Baseball Bat / Cricket invert.png Cricket Bat / Crowbar invert.png Crowbar / Axe invert.png Fireaxe / Pan invert.png Frying Pan / GolfClubIcon.png Golf Club / Guitar invert.png Guitar / Katana invert.png Katana / Knife Invert.png Knife / Machete invert.png Machete / Baton invert.png Nightstick / Icon pitchfork inverted.png Pitchfork / Icon shovel inverted.png Shovel
Special Tier Chainsaw invert.png Chainsaw
Other Weapons
Grenades Bile invert.png Bile Bomb / Molotov inverted.png Molotov Cocktail / Pipebomb invert.png Pipe Bomb
Upgrades L4D2 ammo explosive.png Explosive Ammunition / L4D2 ammo incendiary.png Incendiary Ammunition / Laser sight HUD invert.PNG Laser Sight
Fixed Weapons MMG Icon.png Heavy Machine Gun / Minigun icon.png Minigun
Usable Items Explosive Barrel HUD invert.png Explosive barrel / Fireworks icon.png Fireworks / Gas canister HUD invert.png Gas can / Oxytank icon.png Oxygen tank / Propane tank icon.png Propane tank
Special Items Cola.png Cola / Gnome icon.png Gnome Chompski
Featured in both games / L4D1-exclusive / L4D2-exclusive (Counter-Strike weapons / PC-exclusive)