These Five Fillet Knives Will Do The Trick In Getting The Meat Off The Bone.
Usually, when it comes to hunting knives, they are multipurpose. A knife used to process a deer can just as easily be used to process a pheasant. Fish, though, is the outlier. The flesh of fish is far more delicate than that of land animals and needs a particular type of knife to slice through it.
There are all sorts of knives and tools specifically used for fish like the Japanese sushi knife or a pin bone remover. But if you’re looking to simply get the meat off the bone, you’ll need a high-quality fillet knife. No matter if it’s tuna or salmon or whitefish, a fillet knife will be your go-to tool when processing.
How Is A Fillet Knife Different From Other Knives?
In a word: flexibility. A caping knife or a gut hook differentiate themselves by their shape. A fillet knife, while uniquely shaped, stands out more due to its flexibility. Some of the more flexible fillet knives can be bent to follow the lines of a fish before flexing back to straight.
The long, thin blade that comes to a razor-sharp point kind of meshes several knives into one. It can slice hard, finesse its way around bends and crevices, and neatly get the meat off the carcass.
You can see everything a fillet knife can do in the video below from the folks at San Diego Seafood.
Five Top Fillet Knives
These knives come from some of the top kitchen knife makers in the world. There are blades made from different materials, and there’s even an electric knife. The diversity in modern fillet knives is remarkable.
Bubba 7-Inch Tapered Flex
Thin. Nimble. Easy to use. Those are just a few of the ways you can describe this knife from Bubba. The blade is made from high-carbon stainless steel with a titanium nitride coating to aid edge retention and durability. The handle is made from a rubberized non-slip grip which will stay secure in your hand even when wet. The guard will also keep your hand safe while cutting.
Bubba has made a high-quality fillet knife at an affordable price that’s excellent for processing smaller fish.
Wusthof Classic Fillet Knife
From one of the grand kitchen knife makers of the world, Wusthof’s fillet knife is as elegant as there is. The seven-inch blade is a full-tang construction with a triple-riveted handle. The forged stainless blade has been tempered to a 58 HRC, and the included leather sheath lets you bring the knife with you on your next fishing trip in style.
Treat this blade well and it will serve you like the perfect wingman. Also, at the price, you’re going to want to maintain this knife to the best of your capabilities.
Victorinox Fibrox Pro Fillet Knife
Victorinox makes more than just the Swiss Army knife. Their Fibrox line of kitchen knives is a high-end yet affordable line of home cutlery, and the fillet knife is no different. The high-carbon stainless steel blade is stamped, not forged, which keeps costs down, and it has been ice tempered to stay sharper for longer.
As with the other Fibrox knives, the handle is made from an ergonomic, slip-resistant grip that will stay firmly in your hand even if it gets drenched. There’s also no bolster to encourage using every inch of the blade and to make sharpening easier.
Rapala R12® Heavy-Duty Lithium Fillet Knife Combo
Now we’ve entered the world of electric fillet knives, and the R12 from Rapala is an absolute heavyweight. The twin-blade machine is powered by lithium batteries and can cut for 80 uninterrupted minutes. Unlike all the other knives on this list, the blades are serrated which works well with the reciprocating action of the mechanism.
It’s full of all sorts of neat features from the ergonomic handle that lets you shut the knife off without getting near the blades to the LED light that helps illuminate the cutting surface in the dark.
The Fibrox and the Bubba knives are great for a home cook looking into skinning a fillet at home or someone who goes fishing once or twice a summer. The R12 is for the dedicated outdoorsman or guide who is on the water every weekend or multiple times a week. It’s pricey and beefy but worth it if you process fish regularly. The below video from Rapala shows off everything the R12 can do.
From the most over-engineered knife on our list to the most minimalist blade of the five. The G-30 from Global is made from a single piece of stainless steel. The single-piece construction allows for a smooth cut every time, and the blade can get through any fish you put in front of it. The texturing on the handle helps it stay secure when slicing, and the CROMOVA-18 steel holds an edge longer than many other types of steel.
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