It’s confusing to pick out a meat knife for your commercial kitchen. There are several types of meat knives that all have different uses. We’re here to take out the hassle in buying professional knives for cutting, preparing, and carving meats.

Types of Meat Knives

Boning Knife

A boning knife is designed to remove meat from bones. This knife allows you to cut around the bone while getting as much meat as possible.

Used For Not Used For
  • Precision cutting
  • Removing skin from the meat
  • Removing meat from the bone
  • Cutting through bone
  • Portioning meat

Butcher Knife

Use a butcher knife to cut through large sections of meat and break into smaller portions.

Used For Not Used For
  • Trim and section large cuts of meat
  • Portioning
  • Cutting through bone
  • Removing meat from the bone

Cleaver

Cleavers are large knives that can cut easily through meat and bone. These knives are often used to cut a carcass into smaller parts.

Used For Not Used For
  • Cutting through meat and bone
  • Quick sectioning of a carcass
  • Portioning
  • Removing meat from the bone

Cimeter Knife

A cimeter is a variation of a butcher knife. The cimeter knife is made to cut and trim meat for retail service.

Used For Not Used For
  • Cut and trim steaks
  • Make retail cuts for purchase
  • Cutting through bone
  • Sectioning meat

Fillet Knife

The fillet knife is specially designed to skin and de-bone a fish. The sharp blade is flexible for precision cutting.

Used For Not Used For
  • Removing skin and bone from fish cuts
  • Precision cutting
  • Removing bone from poultry
  • Cutting through bone

Carving Knife

Use a carving knife to cut cooked meats like roasts and poultry. This knife is often used with a carving fork to anchor meat while slicing.

Used For Not Used For
  • Precise portioning of cooked meat
  • Slice cooked meat from the bone to serve
  • Cutting raw meat
  • Cutting and slicing fish

Slicing Knife

A slicing knife is perfect for cutting cooked, boneless meat. The blade has a narrow, rounded tip.

Used For Not Used For
  • Slicing cooked, boneless meat
  • Portioning cooked meat
  • Slicing around bones in cooked meat
  • Slicing raw meat

 

Caring for Your Knife

Taking care of your professional meat knife is almost as important as choosing the right one. Make sure to consider these areas of care to be sure that you’re giving your knives the best treatment!

You should always keep your knife sharp to ensure the best performance. Dull blades can lead to lost time, wasted ingredients, and injuries. Make sure to find a professional knife sharpener in your area if you’re unfamiliar with how to sharpen your knife yourself.

Even if your knife is dishwasher safe, it’s not good for the blade to use a dishwasher with your professional knives. You should also avoid leaving it in the sink. Anytime your knife bangs against stainless steel or other dish wares, it loses some of its sharpness. Wash, dry, and store your knives immediately after use to keep the blade sharp.

The best place to keep your professional knives is on a wall-mount made specifically for knife storage. These typically have a magnetic strip that allows you to easily access and store your knives. This also prevents them from banging around in a drawer and losing their sharpness.

Summary

Make sure that you understand what each knife is best used for before buying. We’ve laid out the basics on buying meat knives to give you information at a glance.


Knife  Use it For Don’t Use it For Best Brands

Boning

  • Precision Cutting
  • Removing meat and skin from the bone
  • Cutting through bone
  • Portioning meat
  • Dexter Russel
  • Central Exclusive
  • Admiral Craft

Butcher

  • Trim and section large cuts of meat
  • Portioning
  • Cutting through bone
  • Removing meat from the bone
  • Dexter Russel
  • Mundial

Cleaver

  • Cutting through meat and bone
  • Quick sectioning
  • Portioning
  • Removing meat from the bone
  • Forschner
  • Thunder Group

Cimeter

  • Cut and trim steaks
  • Make retail cuts for purchase
  • Cutting through bone
  • Sectioning meat
  • Dexter Russel
  • Mundial

Fillet

  • Removing skin and bone from fish cuts
  • Precision cutting
  • Removing bone from poultry
  • Cutting through bone
  • Dexter Russel
  • Mundial

Carving

  • Precise portioning of cooked meat
  • Slice cooked meat from the bone for serving
  • Cutting raw meat
  • Cutting and slicing fish
  • Dexter Russel
  • Mundial
  • Central Exclusive

Slicing

  • Slicing cooked, boneless meat
  • Portioning cooked meat
  • Slicing around bones in cooked meat
  • Slicing raw meat
  • Dexter Russel
  • Paderno World Cuisine
  • Mundial

 

Looking for more tips on buying commercial kitchen equipment and supplies? Check out the Buying Guides section of our resource center!