Operations

IHOP shuts down its fast-casual spinoff, Flip'd

After about two years and four locations, the pancake chain said it would apply lessons from the grab-and-go concept to other parts of its business.
Exterior of Flip'd in New York City
Flip'd had a small footprint and an emphasis on off-premise. / Photo courtesy of IHOP

IHOP is retiring its fast-casual Flip’d by IHOP brand after opening four locations in a little less than two years.

The pancake chain won’t be opening any new Flip’d stores, and three of the existing restaurants appeared to be closed Thursday.

The company didn’t specify why it’s shutting down the concept, but said the decision came after evaluating the results of what it called a pilot.

“The Flip’d by IHOP concept was piloted to test and learn how to make the guest experience for off-premise dining more enjoyable,” an IHOP spokesperson said in an email. “Our learnings from this pilot will inform how we iterate going forward.”

Flip’d was initially pitched as a new development option for franchisees that allowed them to enter denser, urban markets, though it was ultimately targeted to suburbs and nontraditional locations as well. It was part of a push by IHOP to double its unit count and was designed to capitalize on the growth in to-go business during the pandemic.

Flip’d had a much smaller footprint than a traditional IHOP and required fewer employees to operate. It offered a large menu of IHOP favorites across all three dayparts with an emphasis on grab-and-go. Signatures like pancakes and French toast were reimagined as bowls, and there was a lineup of handhelds like breakfast sandwiches, burgers and chicken tenders. 

Customers could order from kiosks or a cashier, and there was limited seating for those who wanted to dine in.

Though off-premise was the focus, franchisees of Flip’d’s New York City location told Restaurant Business last year that 60% of their business was coming from dine-in

The first Flip’d opened in September 2021 in Lawrence, Kan., followed by the New York store that December.

As of Thursday, neither of those locations were listed on Flip’d’s website, nor were they accepting online orders. No one picked up the phone at the Kansas restaurant.

A third Flip’d, in Silver Spring, Md., closed Thursday, Source of the Spring reported. The fourth store, in Cincinnati, was apparently still open.

A spokesperson did not respond to a question about the status of the four restaurants.

Flip’d was part of a class of limited-service offshoots from full-service chains that also included Hooters’ Hoots, Aussie Grill by Outback and B-Dubs Wings Express from Buffalo Wild Wings.

Members help make our journalism possible. Become a Restaurant Business member today and unlock exclusive benefits, including unlimited access to all of our content. Sign up here.

Multimedia

Exclusive Content

Financing

Why MOD Pizza is not out of the woods yet

The Bottom Line: The fast-casual pizza chain was sold last week to Elite Restaurant Group. But few who’ve seen the finances believe the company can avoid closing large numbers of stores.

Workforce

Restaurants have a hot opportunity to improve their reputation as employers

Reality Check: New mandates for protecting workers from dangerous on-the-job heat are about to be dropped on restaurants and other employers. The industry could greatly help its labor plight by acting first.

Financing

Some McDonald's customers are doubling up on the discounts

The Bottom Line: In some markets, customers can get the fast-food chain's $5 value meal for $4. The situation illustrates a key rule in the restaurant business: Customers are savvy and will find loopholes.

Trending

More from our partners