If you’ve ever tried filleting a fish, you know that the task is not as easy as it sounds. Filleting a fish requires patience and skills that can only be achieved through years of practice. That being said, tools also play a great role in this job. One of the main tools that you need in good condition is the knife.
Without the best fish fillet knives in your kitchen, there’s a high possibility that you’re going to butcher your fish.
To prevent you from doing that, we have selected a few knives that we’re sure you’ll love. Whether you’re a beginner or a professional, you’ll find the knife that you need here on our list for sure.
How to Choose the Best Fish Fillet Knife
There are a few things you need to consider before settling for a fish fillet knife set. Besides checking out fish fillet knife reviews, you also need to keep an eye out for some specifications. Here are a few features that might help you out.
The Type of Knife
Manual knives are not the only kind of fish fillet knives available in the market. With changing technology there have been improvements in filet knives as well. Electric-powered knives, Manual knives, and traditional knives are the main kinds available nowadays.
Electric knives are faster and more relaxed. You won’t have to use much effort when cutting fish with this knife. But, they are more expensive and require a lot of practice.
Manual or traditional knives are easy to use but you will need to put in a lot more effort. These are cheaper and easier to maintain as well.
One other benefit that these have over electric knives is that they don’t require any power source. So they can be used anywhere. This is also the kind of knife you want to take on a destination, work, or vacation.
Dull blades cause more accidents than sharp blades. So no matter what kind of knife you get, you must always try and keep it sharp at all times. Buy the best fillet knife sharpener to keep your tool in good condition. You can also try and go for knives that don’t go dull too soon.
We have knife options that stay sharp for a long time here in our fillet knife reviews. The length and size of the blade is also a factor that needs to be considered. Bigger fish will require longer blades to penetrate the meat completely, while smaller fish can be filleted with thinner, smaller knives.
The handle of the knife you are using will increase both your efficiency and comfort. If you have to fillet fish quite often, you should get knives that come with a grippy and more comfortable handle.
Wooden or rubber handles are a great choice for this. A bad handle might cause your hand to slip and cause accidents. So, this is not a feature that you should take lightly.
Fish fillet knives are quite sharp. So, a sheath is a must-have if you want to keep the fish fillet knife in your house or a workstation. You can sheath that are made of leather or rubber. These look quite cool and keep you and the people around the knife safe at all times.
Best Fish Fillet Knife Reviews
With the increasing demand, a lot of brands are now coming out with new versions of fish fillet knives. But, not all of them work as well as they claim to be. We’re here to help you buy the finest fish fillet knife. We’ve included all kinds of verities in our list so that there’s something for everyone.
Overall Best Fillet Knife
Here are a few knives that we think work the best. Out of all the knives that we recommend these stand out in the crowd because of their durability, ease of use, and incomparable performance.
Dalstrong Fish Fillet Knife Set
The most important thing to consider when buying a fish fillet knife is the blade. This Dalstrong Fillet knife features a carbon 7CR17MOV-X super steel blade. Not only is the blade sharp but it is also precise. Made with the right amount of thickness, this blade easily makes this one of the best knives for filleting fish.
This steel was made using a special heat-treated vacuum technique giving the knife better edge retention.
To keep this ultra-sharp blade from causing any unwanted accidents, the product comes with its sheath. Just like the knife itself, the sheath is also designed in a matte black coating that looks super cool and classy at the same time.
For you to be able to hold the knife easily, the handle is made of military-grade fiber resin.
Because the handle is made of such strong material you won’t have to worry about heat, sweat, or even cool temperature harming the construction. The shape has also been designed by conducting a lot of research so that you get the best grip.
Rapala Fish ‘N Fillet Knife with Sheath
If you’re into cooking and have even the slightest knowledge about cooking utensils, we’re sure you’ve heard of the Rapala fillet knife.
The Rapala fillet knife is a tool that most fishermen or campers use. This is because the blade of this knife is unique. Made in a modern tapered technique this knife can help you fillet a whole fish in minutes.
Because the blade is so sharp, you can also use the knife for other stuff like cutting the fin off or even for deboning. The multi-functionality of the knife is what makes this a fan-favorite.
European full steel construction is what makes this knife so durable. The material also helps make the knife more flexible. Hence, you’ll be able to reach in between the skin and the meat more easily.
You also get a matching sheath and a single-stage sharpener that you can travel with. We must say, these fillet knives do stand up to the hype.
Morakniv Fishing Comfort Fillet Knife
Looking for a knife that you can use to carve out bigger fish? Check this one out!
The long curved blade of this Morakniv fillet knife will help you fillet any fish of any size within minutes.
Besides having a blade that is sharp enough to cut through glass, this model also has a great handle. Made with high-quality rubber, this is one of the most comfortable knives handles that you will ever hold. Curved to match the grooves of your palm, this handle gives you full control.
Moreover, the knife will never slip out of your hand. Because the handle is so soft, we also recommend this if you’re a professional and you work with fish fillet knives for long hours. When you have this knife in your palm there are no chances of getting sore hands.
Furthermore, the blade itself is made with Swedish cold-rolled steel. Rustproof and stain resistance blade like this one will easily last you a few years. Because the blade is made with such sharp and high-quality steel you won’t have to sharpen it so often. One good sharpening session every two months will do.
Best Folding Fillet Knife
Nothing can be more useful than a fillet knife when you’re out camping or traveling. Because the knife is so flexible and sharp at the same time you can use it for more than just filleting fish. Here are some handy dandy folding fish fillet knife reviews.
Opinel Slim Series Folding Fillet Knives
This slim knife gives you three options to choose from. While the no. 8 and no. 10 are great pocket knives, the no. 12 is a bigger option that you can use as a kitchen knife as well.In this Wusthof fillet knife review, we will show you why this is the best option to get if you’re looking for a knife that will help you fillet a crappie fish in minutes.
All of these knives from Opinel are designed to be slim and sleek. So you can fit them into your pocket without creating that much of a bulge. It’s also very compact so you can store the knife easily.
Because the blades are so thin, they are more flexible. Therefore, you can only use the no.8 and no.10 for cutting vegetables or small fruits. The blades on these versions are too flexible to be used on fish.
The no. 12 on the other hand can be used for these hard tasks. More so, the unique shape and flexibility allow you to fillet fish of any size.
You can slide this blade open and then lock it in place. A feature like this increases safety as the blade does not move around at all.
Outdoor Edge 5 inch Folding Fillet Knife
The best fillet knife for fish does not always have to be expensive. You can also get ones that work just as well as any luxury ones but cost half the price.
If you’re on a budget and are looking for a knife that you can travel with, the outdoor edge fish and bone is a great choice.
At a great price you get a tool that you can use for both deboning and filleting fish. That means you don’t have to carry two knives on your next camping trip. This tool will be more than enough.
The 5-inch blade is constructed of stainless steel. You can wash it as you please with no fear of existing.
Additionally, the full length of the knife, including the handle, is 11.3 inches. A dainty and compact knife like this one will fit into any pocket and any bag.
A Zytel handle that is made with a double molded rubber ensures that your hands never get tired. You get quite a firm grip.
Buck Folding Fishing Fillet Knife
Now, this is a brand that most campers are familiar with. When you see so many positive feedback on a brand, you know it’s a must-have. In this buck fillet knife reviews, we’ve covered just why you need this knife in your life!
The buck fillet knife is designed with a slight curve. The blades on this one are narrow and incredibly sharp. This allows you to reach in between the skin and remove it without losing much of the fish.
Titanium coated blades have a core made of stainless steel hence making this buck fish fillet knife one of the most durable pocket fillet knives.
Even though the handle is made of rubber, it consists of polypropylene that has been enforced with blue glass. Therefore these TPE rubber handles won’t crack or lose their shape easily.
The buck fish fillet knife has been known to last years without needing replacements on any part.
Best Japanese Fillet Knife
We’ve all seen videos online of Japanese chefs filleting fish in seconds. Well if you too want that kind of speed and precision you need a Japanese fish fillet knife. Luckily, we’ve got the best options reviewed for you.
Mercer Culinary Millennia Narrow Fillet Knife
If you’ve got a bit of fish to fillet, this is just the knife for you. Available at a generous 8.5-inch this blade is just long enough to cut through large-sized fish.
While the blade is big, it is not uncontrollable. The blades are flexible and can move any way you want them to. But they also have a sturdiness of their own. This feature can come in handy when filleting a larger, meatier fish such as tuna.
Japanese steel is different and better as it does not rust. You can clean the knife easily with any soap you want. There’s no fear of getting scratches or stains on this thing.
Not only are the handles made of rubber that is easy to hold, but the handles also come with finger grips. This way you’ll know exactly where to place your fingers to get the maximum amount of pressure without much force.
DALSTRONG Japanese Fish Filet Knife
The one thing the best fish cleaning knife needs to have is sharpness. And when it comes to this Dalstrong knife, there is no shortage of it.
This Dalstrong knife is known to be as sharp as a scalpel. The tapered blade slides through the fish skin separating the meat in minutes. With just one use you’ll understand why we’re calling this the best fillet knife for fish.
Not only does this blade perform well, but it also looks great! Made with a special Shogun Series Tsunami Rose blade pattern, this blade looks much better than most other Japanese and local fish fillet knives.
As the blade is so sharp and tapered, you barely feel any resistance when cutting through the fish.
The durable construction of the knife also makes it last through heat and cold. So the knife will easily serve you a few years. This 6-inch knife is all you need for filleting both small and big fish.
Kershaw Clearwater 7-inch Fillet Knife For Fish
Looking for a Japanese fillet knife that you can travel with? Find out here in this Kershaw fillet knife review why this is just what you need.
Although the knife comes with a whopping large 7-inch blade, the handy sheath is what makes this so travel friendly.
The sheath that you get is made with ABS and is perfect for attaching the knife with a belt, on boats, for hanging, and for sliding into pockets. Moreover, the large size also enables you to break down the fish besides filleting it.
Now let’s look at the blade. This blade that we have hyped up so much is made of stainless steel. Therefore, you can use it on wet surfaces for a long time and even soak it in water without having to worry about corrosion.
A black handle that has been designed and weighted perfectly to give you balance is just what you need when filleting a fish of this size.
Best Fillet Knife for Trout
Trout is one of the most common fish that you can catch when fishing. This is why we think that knowing how to fillet a trout and having a knife that is well suited for filleting a trout is important. Here are a few fillet knives for trout that we recommend.
Bubba 7-Inch Tapered Flex Fillet Fishing Knife
Having a large knife such as this one with you at all times is a great advantage. You never know when you’re going to catch a big fish on a boat trip or when camping. This Bubba blades review will show just what the perfect fillet knife for fish should be like.
Although the blade is a nice 7-inch size, the overall height of the knife stands at 13 inches. This is the perfect handle to blade ratio. Now you have a short and stable handle that gives you more balance and control without adding too much height top the tool.
The handle on this one, besides being comfortable to hold on to is also made with a non-slip material. We all know how slippery fish can get. Having a tool that reduces this slipping can be nothing but handy.
An ultra-thin and precise knife blade allow you to make more accurate cuts. Get the skin off the fish at one go. To make the knife even more durable and long-lasting the exterior has a Ti-nitride coating.
Henckels Zwilling J.A Fillet Knife For Fish
If you have this knife at hand, you can easily fillet the fish, no matter what the size and enjoy a delicious meal.
Made in Germany, this is just the knife you need if you’re tired of staining your knife blade. Different kitchen ingredients such as turmeric or sometimes even fish blood can cause nasty stains to appear on the surface of your knife. With this carbon high-quality construction, you won’t have to worry about that.
Ice-hardened blades are a must-have if you’re tired of having to sharpen your blades too often. These stay razor-sharp even after weeks of usage on large and meaty fish.
The blades also have a precision-honed design so that they can give you the best cutting angle. Zwilling is a company quite well known for making knives that have a laser cutting edge.
Dexter Narrow Fillet Knife For Fish
Now, this is a brand that is quite popular amongst fishermen. In this Dexter fillet knife review, we’ll cover why this knife is so loved by all.
The high carbon steel constructed blade has one side that is straight and one that is slightly curved. This design is ideal for filleting trout as you can follow the path of the skin better to get the whole thing off in one piece.
Not only is it satisfying when you can get the skin off of a fish without any tears, but the process also saves you time and a lot of clean up.
Hollow ground blades are also easier to maintain and sharp. This tool moves with the flow of your hand giving you better cutting angles. It also makes the tedious process of filleting a fish much easier and faster.
An all-white look makes the knife unique. The handles are made to be non-slip and easy to hold.
Best Fillet Knife for Pan Fish
Filleting a panfish is a delicate task. Because the fish is so small in size, getting the skin off of the fish can take a lot of patience and time. But with the right fish fillet knife, you can get a clean slice of fish without much hassle. Here a few knives you can consider buying for filleting a panfish.
Global Flexible Swedish Filet Knife For Pan Fish
You might be thinking why you need to pay so much for a fillet knife you will use on such a small fish. But we can guarantee you that the price you’ll pay for the knife will be worth it.
This fish fillet knife from Global is a long but sturdy one. The brand follows a Swedish method of making knives. Hence, you get a precise tool that has just the right level of a bend.
Normally an 8-inch blade is too long for filleting a small panfish. But because this knife is so sturdy, you get a stronghold on the knife which increases your precision making this the perfect tool for getting the skin off of fish fast.
Another huge benefit that you get in this tool is the double-beveled edge. This means that both left-handed users and right-handed users will be able to use this knife comfortably.
Rada Cutlery Fillet Knife For Pan Fish
The one thing that can come in handy when filleting a small fish is a sharp knife. This one from Rada is has been made with a surgical-grade blade. Even with frequent use on large or medium-sized fish, this blade won’t get dull. So there is less need for maintenance and sharpening.
Initially, the blade comes hand sharpened. You’ll feel the difference between a hand and machine sharpened knife instantly.
Made of T420 high carbon steel, this knife is rust-resistant. There is no doubt that this durable knife will last you years without causing any trouble.
Although the construction is strong, the blade does have a bit of giving. The slight flexibility allows the knife to groove according to your movement. You do need some practice to get this thing right on smaller fish, but the results are faster and much cleaner.
FISSMAN 8 inch Fillet Knife For Pan Fish
What kind of handle your knife has is as important as the blade itself; especially when you’re working with smaller fish. That is why we recommend this Fissman 8-inch filet knife for filleting panfish.
Made with polypropylene, this handle quite is soft but not squishy. The exterior is soft to hold but the material is not flexible or moldable. This feature makes the handles more durable. You won’t see any scratches or wear on the surface.
The matte black handle also has three grooves to guide you and let you know exactly where your fingers need to go. Therefore your fish filleting process is fast and safe as well.
Every product that Fissman launches are tried and tested through rigorous tests to ensure that you get the best quality products at hand. There is no possibility of getting a bad batch when you’re buying from Fissman.
High-grade German steel constructed blade lasts weeks without getting dull.
Best Fillet Knife for Redfish
A large fish needs a large knife; there’s no doubt in that. Redfish are typically large and quite meaty. Therefore, you need a knife that can handle that kind of workload. Here are some knives that are large and sturdy enough to handle a fish like that.
KastKing Fillet Knife For Redfish
According to your preference, you can choose the blade length that you desire. KastKing gives you options to choose between a lot of sizes ranging from 5 inches to 9 inches.
These knives are designed to be long, lean, and razor-sharp. Longer knives will be able to get more skin off faster. The narrow and sharp design helps get the skin off precisely so that you have that classic juicy redfish flesh left without any bruises and pokes.
Made with German 4116 blades, these knives are one of the sharpest tools out in the market. This blade has been designed to have enough flexibility to move freely. But the blade is also sturdy so that it does not wiggle too much when it gets deeper into the skin.
With this handy knife, you get a protective sheath that is durable and scratch-resistant. A handy non-slip handle has also been included so that the fish filleting process is safer.
KastKing Spartacus Fillet Knife For Redfish
KastKing has made this model, especially for freshwater fish. The sturdy blade along with the ergonomic handle makes this one of our top picks.
This knife has a blade made with 8Cr14 stainless steel. The construction is protected from rust and UV as well. Even with regular use, you won’t notice any scratches or rust forming making this the perfect tool to take out on a fishing trip.
Moreover, the content of carbon in these blades is quite high. This makes the blades super sharp and also helps keep them that way for as long as possible. You’ll notice that these blades are quite sharp straight out of the box.
Another reason why these knives perform so well is that they have a ceramic finish and are coated with cerakote.
Added with your purchase is a molded sheath that keeps your knife protected at all times. Even the sheath is built with UV ray protective material.
Rhinoreto Fillet Knife For Redfish
Curved blades work surprisingly well with large fish like redfish. That is why you need to check out this one from Rhinoreto.
A 4-inch fillet knife or a 5-inch fillet knife might seem too small to handle such a large fish but the sturdiness and curve of this tool work better than most high-end larger knives for filleting fish.
The curve of the blade allows you to make smoother and more precise cuts. You can get into the skin of the fish part by part and de-skin the entire thing in minutes.
Rhinoreto is one of the few brands that make non-stick knives. When filleting fish, both the skin and the flesh just slide off the blades.
You get a well-sized handle with this knife to balance off the short blade length. This is why you get such great balance and stability when filleting large fish with a Rhinoreto knife.
Best Fillet Knife for Crappie
Although crappies are sometimes large most of them are usually medium to small or pan-sized. So, to fillet a fish this size, you need knives that are somewhere in between a small and big size. Find our suggestions for crappie fish fillet knives down below.
PLUSINNO Fishing Fillet Knife For Crappie
5cr13 stainless steel blades on the Plussinno fishing knife is perfect for filleting average-sized fish such as crappie.
These knives have a slight curve to them which gives you more precision and smoothness when sliding through the skin; a great feature to have when you don’t want to lose any of that precious fish meat along with the skin.
Black coated blades on the Plussiono fillet knife are also rust-resistant. You can wash them by hand to keep them clean. These are slightly flexible so you get better cutting angles and the knife moves with the flow of your hand.
The handle that you get with this kit has a good grip on it. As the construction is made of rubber, it’s easy on your hands. A feature like this is a must-have if you plan on using your fish fillet knife for long hours.
WÜSTHOF 7-Inch Fillet Knife For Crappie
In this Wusthof fillet knife review, we will show you why this is the best option to get if you’re looking for a knife that will help you fillet a crappie fish in minutes.
The knife has a blade that is sharp enough to cut glass. We wouldn’t consider this as one of the best fillet knives if that weren’t the case. Besides being sharp, the blades are also one of the most durable ones out in the market.
Both the sheath and the blade have been designed in a way that ensures that the products last a very long time. There is no possibility of discoloration, fading, getting scratches, or cracks. No amount of heat or water can destroy the construction of these products.
The carbon stainless steel constructed blades don’t let you feel any resistance even when cutting through the thick parts of the fish.
Also Read: Best Wusthof Knives
Fillet Knife Vs Boning Knife
Although some people use a boning knife as a fillet knife and vice versa it is not the right method. Both of these knives serve different purposes. Boning knives are used to separate the fish meat from the bones. So, they are a bit more rigid and thicker.
Fillet knives on the other hand are used to separate fish meat from the skin. Even the best boning knife can’t separate fish from the skin because it isn’t precise, thin, and sleek enough. So, you better use a boning knife if you don’t want bones in your fish fillet!
Fillet knives can sometimes look quite similar to boning knives as well. But the sharpness and curves are different. A fillet knife can’t be used to debone a fish. Fillet knives are designed to slide in between the skin and the meat of the fish to separate them.
The only time these knives can be interchanged is if you are camping or if you don’t have any other tools with you. If you have a small fish that you want to fillet with a boning knife, you can. But we can guarantee that you’ll have skin left on the meat if you’re using the knife on a larger fish.
How to Fillet A Pan Fish?
As you can guess by the name, a fan fish is called a fan fish because the fish is small enough to fit in a pan. A lot of people are scared of filleting this fish because of the small size. But with the best fillet knife, you will be able to cut, cook, and eat this delicious fish with no hassle. Here’s how to fillet a panfish properly.
- First, place the fish on a flat surface. Hold the fillet knife at an angle just below the fish’s fin. Slice at one goes towards the backbone of the fish.
- Turn your knife and keep cutting towards the tail of the fish. Don’t cut so deep that you reach the backbone.
- Then take your cut fish and turn it to the side. Slice in between the skin and the meat very precisely. Run the knife in such a way that you don’t waste any fish.
How to Fillet A Catfish With A Fillet Knife?
Although the fish might look a bit scary, catfish are not that hard to fillet. Here’s how to fillet the fish to do it justice.
Cut the Entire Fin
First, you’ll want to cut off the entire fin from the sides of the fish as they might get in the way. You can use your fillet knife to do this.
Remove the Skin of the Catfish
Then use your knife to remove the skin of the catfish. You’ll have to do this very carefully as they have quite a thin skin. If you cut too deep, you’ll lose too much meat.
Cut and try slicing as close to the skin as possible. Go from underneath the fin towards the tail. Work in slow and steady motions so that you can maintain a straight cut.
This way you’ll get as much meat as possible. It’s okay if you don’t get the entire skin off at one go. Getting the skin off bit by it is messy but doesn’t cause any harm to the taste of the fish.
Do this on both sides. Get the meat off with the bone and slice into separate fillets. Your fish is now ready to cook and serve.
How to Safely Sharpen Fillet Knife?
Even the best fish fillet knife won’t do you any justice if you don’t get it sharpened. You won’t be able to get smooth and sleek cuts. Therefore, you’ll lose a lot of fish meat when taking off the skin. Here’s how to properly sharpen your fillet knife for the best fish fillets.
- Get a good quality knife sharpening kit or a stone.
- Gold the knife at a 20-degree angle on the stone. Push the stone away from you and towards the end of the stone. ” Try and mimic the act of ” slicing cheese.
- Repeat this for three or four times on each side. When you start noticing that the knife is getting sharp give it a last slide on the stone on both sides.
Here’s Another Method
- Hold the knife in the same way, at a 20-degree angle on the stone
- Instead of going side to side, move the knife in circular motions.
- Use the coarse side of the stone first. Rotate the knife round and round on the stone until you can see that the blade is getting sharper.
- Turn to the other side and repeat
- Check if the knives have sharpened completely by running the blade through a paper. If the paper slices in two your knife has been sharpened successfully.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are a few questions we answered for you in case you’re still confused about fillet knives.
Q: What is The Best Fillet Knife?
A: We would say that the finest fillet knife is the Dalstrong fillet knife. The product is quite durable, stays sharp for a long time, and is corrosion resistant as well.
Q: What Size Fillet Knife do I Need?
A: This depends on what kind of fish you plan on cutting. A good rule is to get a medium-sized knife, 7.5 to 8 inches, which you can use with fish of all sizes. The bigger the fish, the bigger the knife needs to be.
Q: Can I Wash the Knife in a Dishwasher?
A: The detergent used in dishwashers can be too harsh for knives. This can cause scratches and also dull the blade. So, it is better to wash them by hand. Use lukewarm water with mild soap to clean the fillet knife.
Q: What is the Best Size for a Fillet Knife?
A: According to 1source.basspro.com, the best size for a fillet knife is 7.5 inches. The blade is medium-sized so you can use the tool for both small and large fish.
Q: How Flexible Should a Fillet Knife Be?
A: The more flexible a blade is, the easier it is to get the skin off a fish. Try and get your hands on the most flexible knives you can find. They should be able to bounce but come back to their original position every time.
Q: Pocket Fillet Knife or Kitchen Fillet Knife: Which One is the Best to Use?
A: Pocket fillet knives are good to use when you’re camping or traveling. Otherwise, a kitchen fillet knife is a way to go. Kitchen fillet knives have a great size and are also more flexible and sharper. Pocket fillet knives don’t come in large sizes so you can only use them on smaller fish.
You won’t know just what you’re missing out on unless you use a good quality fillet knife. With the help of the best fish filler knives, you can cut through fish like its butter. No more wasting fish meat trying to get the skin off. Now you too can fillet a fish like a professional at home!