Whether you’re preparing Southern Fried oysters or the mouth-watering Taipei oyster Po’boy, you need a good knife to shuck and serve them on the half shell.
Oyster knives come in various shapes and sizes, and you need to find the right type, so you don’t shatter the oyster shell and be left with shell bits inside that gooey goodness!
While it truly is a meal for the high-society, you can try out some oyster recipes at home and indulge in a savory dish that reminds you of the sea.
Have a look at our best oyster knife reviews to shuck your oysters with safety and comfort.
Things to Consider Before Buying an Oyster Knife
If you want to enjoy the best oysters from Yaquina Bay or the southern salt ponds of Massachusetts known for their premium briny taste and exclusiveness at home, getting a high-quality oyster knife is the first thing that comes to mind.
We cannot get started on our oyster knife reviews if we keep you in the dark about what to look for when you go shopping. Give our buyer’s guide a read for more information.
Your preferred way of detaching the muscle and, of course, the oyster size will decide what type of oyster knife suits you. The most common type is New Haven. However, if you prefer to shuck oysters from the side, the Boston design is a better choice because of its long and narrow blade ending in a slight rounder tip.
While a wider blade and pointed tip make up a New Haven knife, you might also try out a Providence or a Galveston for a different feel. We discussed oyster knives and their types in detail in another section below.
The handle geometry is as essential in an oyster knife as it is in a kitchen knife. An oyster knife’s handle is kept simple; since it only takes a minute or two to shuck an oyster for the newbies, these knives are not something you work with for hours.
Moreover, arm fatigue is not an issue here; instead, it’s the risk of slipping and cutting your finger.
Look for oyster knives with thumb-impression and textured handles, preferably with a finger guard because slippery hands are a common issue both professional oyster shuckers and home cooks face.
Many Rockland Guard oyster knives include a pair of cut-resistant gloves or antimicrobial protective cloth for extra safety.
The blade tip is a significant aspect of oyster knives right after the blade material. A fragile blade can easily break into two when you pry open an oyster shell resulting in a mess.
High-carbon stainless steel blades are the way to go for shucking Pacific oysters. The stronger the blade, the better you can open up the hinge with a swift sweep of the knife.
Most New Haven oyster knives will have a blade length of 2-¾ inch. While they tackle small and medium shells the best. So if you’re a fan of coon oysters, you’ll need a sharper and longer oyster knife.
The same goes for the Kumamoto oysters. Their misshapen shells are challenging to shuck with an average oyster knife. Prying them open can be scary, but a Japanese oyster knife does it pretty well!
9 Best Oyster Knife Reviews
Below we have ten of the most exclusive oyster knives considering affordability and usage for both restaurants and home kitchens. Let’s get to know about them!
Dexter Russell 2.75-inch New Haven Oyster Knife
First up, we have the American favorite New Haven-style oyster knife by Dexter-Russell. The brand’s popularity is not unknown in the cutlery arena worldwide. This 2-¾ inch oyster knife will help you dig into delectable Buffalo fried oysters and enjoy your day.
For starters, it has a pear-shaped and textured handle. It helps you have a comfortable, non-slip grip on the knife and shuck your oysters as efficiently as possible. If you’re going for the classic hinge technique, a New Haven knife will give you a better advantage. Thanks to its pointed and sharp tip.
As for the blade, high-carbon, high-alloy, and the premium stain-free Dexsteel has been used in the making. Moreover, this knife is also the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) certified. The Sani-Safe handle alongside the blade is straightforward to clean by hand.
But what makes this Dexter-Russell knife the best oyster shucker is its exceptional hardness and blade design. You can shuck any type of oyster with this one without fail.
Although it is a bit expensive, you have to weigh in its durability and precision for the job. And when you do, you’ll thank us for suggesting this premium oyster knife!
Victorinox New Haven Oyster Knife
Better known as Swiss Army Knife manufacturers, Victorinox has been in the knife making world since 1897. Flourishing over the over, Victorinox is now making excellent household knives as well. This oyster knife will give you a feel of elegance and timelessness with their century-old expertise.
To begin with, this Victorinox oyster knife is styled in the New Haven pattern. It’s the most common and versatile knife for shucking oysters of different shapes. The tip is formed by an aggressively sharp bevel that gradually develops from the body of the blade.
Moving on to the handle, you are going to love its slip-resistant material. Frequently our hands get wet while shucking oysters at home; in that case, its super-grip handle will ensure that the knife stays safely securely as you pull the hinge apart and take out the yummy oyster!
The high-carbon steel blade has the perfect amount of hardness for shucking those sumptuous mollusks ready to be served on the shell. It doesn’t matter what your oyster recipe is, this knife will be the perfect tool in all departments.
However, it is worth mentioning that the Victorinox oyster shucker does a better job at shucking small to medium oysters.
Tang Song 8-Piece Oyster Shucking Knife Set
Oysters can be just as expensive as any premium seafood in a restaurant. So, if you don’t want to hit the oyster bar and are in a mood for home-made oysters this season, get this knife set right away.
This set includes eight excellent oyster knives for your whole family and guests. Serving raw oysters with tabasco sauce, ice and lemon is a flattering meal you can spread out for your guests.
And for that, you need a bunch of top-notch oyster knives for everyone. These are made of premium stainless steel and come with wooden handles for a traditional and homely feel.
The wooden handle is also a comfortable choice and a breath of fresh air outside the world of plastic handles. More so, the fact that oysters require a special kind of knife is all the more reason why you should invest in an oyster knife set.
Kitchen knives most certainly don’t seal the deal; if you are thinking about santoku, truth be told, its rectangular shape looks entirely different than an oyster knife although they are of a similar size.
Toadfish Outfitters Pro Edition Oyster Knife
Whether you’re shucking west coast oysters or the famous jinhi bay oysters, this knife by Toadfish is the greatest for restaurant and home use.
A sharp tip and dull sides on an oyster knife are sometimes not enough to pop the hinge. That said, you need both a sharp tip and sharpened sides to slide the knife inside an oyster shell, twist and pop it open.
Toadfish make excellent oyster knives, and their knives are of top-notch sharpness. It comes in handy when you have to remove the slimy flesh from the half shell.
Other than that, you get a puncture-resistant and cut-proof cloth with antimicrobial properties. Many home chefs do not have the proper expertise for shucking oysters. This protective cloth can save your other hand from accidental knife slips and cuts!
Furthermore, we liked the Toadfish knife is its unique handle geometry. It has a thumb-print impression where your thumb will ideally be when you’re cutting open oysters. It makes way for an effortless shucking.
Moreover, its stain-free and rust-resistant blade have enough hardness to tackle the large oysters.
OXO Good Grips Non-Slip Oyster Knife
This oyster knife by OXO will be the most valuable asset in your fancy dinner parties. The OXO oyster knife is reasonably priced, and it’s meant to last for a long time.
If you’re on the hunt for a premium oyster knife, you’ve most certainly come by OXO knife reviews somewhere. It’s one of the trusted brands for household cutlery as well as restaurant necessities.
The handle may look a little chubby, but when you take the knife in your hand, its weight will feel surprisingly balanced for effortless shucking.
That said, its handle does feel soft and comfortable. It also has a hollowed circle in the middle of the handle so you can hang it easily.
If you like to stay up for cleaning and washing after hosting a grand dinner at your house, you can quickly put this oyster knife in your dishwasher along with other kitchen utensils for a hands-free cleanup!
We all know how Pacific oysters are the largest and toughest ones on the menu. This knife is thin and hard to get inside the shell and open the hinge, whereas shucking these can easily bend the regular oyster knives.
So, if it does an excellent job for pacific oysters, you can guess how comfortable it will be to shuck the small ones with weak hinges.
Rockland Guard 3.5’’ Oyster Shucking Set
Tired of the oyster knives that get bent after minimum twisting? Then Rockland Guard has something that you’ll like. This knife may not be the sharpest out there, but its blade hardness is sure to wow you!
You can cut open a variety of oysters and scallops with this Rockland Guard oyster knife. It’s primarily due to its hard 3.5-inch stainless steel blade, which is never prone to breakage and sturdy enough to jostle the toughest of the shells.
Moving on to the blade profile, the edges are slightly dull because the contact point of the oyster and the knife will be the tip. And as for the tip, it’s bent and sharpened to make precise cuts along with the shell without cracking it.
The Rockland Guard logo makes it an engraved oyster knife that you can flaunt at the dinner table.
In short, this oyster knife is a beautiful blend of strength and precision, and we’ve never seen anything quite like it!
But the best part of this fine knife has to be the level 5 protection food-grade gloves for your comfort. To make sure that your hands stay protected while cutting open oysters, putting on cut-resistant gloves beforehand helps a great deal!
Additionally, the fact that it’s a set of a pair of good-quality gloves and a great oyster knife is another reason for you to get this set. It also makes up an excellent gift idea for your loved ones if New Year’s Eve is just around the corner.
Winco Wooden Handle Oyster Knife
Although the good oysters can be priced sky-high, the best oyster knife for shucking oysters doesn’t cost an arm and leg. This one by Winco takes its shape from a sword and has the looks of an exquisite blade.
About the brand, Winco has been proudly in the market since 1992 with kitchen products for chefs and restaurateurs worldwide. They make excellent meal preparation utensils upholding their promise and spreading their fame to every corner.
So, when it came to oyster knives, they manufactured an incredible one as was expected from them.
A sleek, 2.00 mm thick blade with a sharp tip forming gradually can run smoothly along the edge of the shell to remove the muscle. You can serve either raw or cooked oysters without making a mess for that family dinner.
This Winco oyster knife is our favorite because it comes at a price that is not only reasonable but also effortlessly twists open hinges. You won’t have to apply force; a simple twist and turn will do most oysters.
Lastly, the wooden handle elevates its look, and since some people struggle to keep the grip on wooden handles, Winco also incorporated a smart, round-shaped finger guard to protect your finger from cuts in case yours slips.
UJ Ramelson Duxbury Oyster Knife
This oyster knife has an inspiring story behind its making. It was designed in collaboration with the oystermen at Island Creek Oysters in Duxbury from Massachusetts. That explains its unique, ergonomic shape and premium blade profile.
For starters, it sports a tough, point tip that won’t bend when you pry open a shell. You can quickly get inside the hinge of both weak and hard-shelled oysters with a little push. The stainless steel blades stay as good as new for many years.
It also has decent rust-resistant properties, and the blade can maintain its edge retention very well, which amounts to its moderate price range. The fact that it’s two or three times more expensive than typical oyster knives shouldn’t be a reason to stop an oyster lover from satisfying their seafood craving.
After all, the design and performance of the blade genuinely make it worth every buck.
There’s no doubt that the most reliable and the best oyster shucking knife is no other than this one by UJ Ramelson. If you’re still not convinced, check out its sizeable remarkable polypropylene plastic handle with a slim profile. It comfortably slides in both a fancy dinner party at home and a family picnic.
Rockland Guard Oyster Shucking Knives
We are finishing off with another cool oyster knife by Rockland Guard. This one is for those of us home cooks looking for the best deal in oyster knives.
Its sturdy stainless steel blade easily cuts open fresh oysters so you can slurp it straight into your mouth. The oyster knife tricks are easy to pick up when the knife is top-notch and easy to maneuver.
Priced at less than ten bucks, this oyster knife sure puts up a good fight with the higher-end ones. And don’t be surprised if it exceeds your expectations because Rockland Guard is a brand you can trust just like the countless households and commercial kitchens do across the USA.
This oyster knife makes its way to being one of the best oyster shucking knives in terms of its handle quality as well. The handle is a bit wide and fits easily in your palm for prying oyster shells in a better and comfortable way.
The 420 stainless steel blade material is equipped with proper hardness, and it’s likely not going to snap in half as you do the shucking. Lastly, it’s also dishwasher safe, so there’s one less thing to worry about.
Types of Oyster Knife
Beyond the famous Wellfleet’s shores, the shallow bays of Cape town are abundant in sumptuous oysters for centuries now. If you want to explore the oyster oasis worldwide, you need good oyster knives to enjoy them.
Depending on the shell type and size of oysters, these knives come in four main categories. Without further ado, let’s get to know about them.
The New Haven oyster knives are ideal if you follow the classic hinge technique. Its convex tip travels inside the shell in an upward motion leaving the muscle neat and unharmed. They usually come with a pear-shaped handle made of either wood or polypropylene plastic. Most New Haven knives run 2-¾ inch long.
It features a pear or oval-shaped handle with a narrow and long blade for versatile shucking. The sides of the blade are not as sharp, but the handle profile gives you better leverage at the thumb rest. Moreover, the blade itself is slightly beveled and narrows gradually toward the flat, rounded tip.
You’ll find Galveston oyster knives in oyster bars or fancy restaurants that serve chunky Eastern oysters. The long and sturdy blade is necessary to detach the slimy and briny muscle from the half shell. Moreover, the blade sides are also sharp for clean removal. The tip is narrowed, but it’s not razor-sharp.
This one is good for medium-sized oysters. It features a similar look as the New Haven knife. The key difference is its flat blade. New Haven knives are beveled on the side, but this one is not. The wide and straight blade is best for detaching muscle from shells rather than prying them open.
How to Shuck an Oyster with an Oyster Knife?
Shucking oysters for the first time can be a bit scary because of their misshapen shells and whopping sizes.
Have a look at our step by step guide to shuck them like a pro.
Step 1: Insert Your Knife into the Hinge
After you’ve detected the oyster’s hinge, put the tip of your knife inside it. Slide the tip upwards not to puncture the soft muscle.
Step 2. Twist until the Hinge Opens
Upon inserting the knife through the hinge, follow a subtle twisting motion till you see an opening.
Step 3: Run the Knife Along the Edge
In order to make the two shells part away completely, keep your hand steady, have a firm grip on the handle, and run the blade inside. Then discard the top shell.
Step 4: Glide the Knife under the Oyster
Now comes the tricky part. You have to run the knife’s blade under the muscle for detaching it from the bottom shell. Frequent and imprecise sweeps of the blade may shatter the shell or spoil the fullness of the muscle.
And that’s how it’s done!
Oyster Knife vs. Clam Knife
Below are the criteria on which an oyster knife and a clam knife have their fundamental differences.
Oyster knives are broader and shorter than clam knives. The tip of the former curves to a sharpened point and its edge is beveled on both sides usually. Clam knives are narrow and long, which are more like a Boston style oyster knife.
Tip of the Blade
The blade tip on an oyster knife can either be sharp or round, depending on the style. Since a clam knife is inserted between the two shells of a clam, which are naturally parted, it doesn’t have a razor-sharp tip.
Oyster knives need to be very sturdy and durable because you have to part the shells yourself, whereas a clam knife only needs to pop open an already parted clam. The primary difference in shucking oysters and clams make the two knives quite different from each other as well.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is Shucking Oysters?
A: Shucking oysters is the process of removing its flat shell and getting the oyster out of its cupped shell with a knife.
Q: Why Do I Need an Oyster Knife?
A: You need an oyster knife because shucking oysters cannot be done with a clam knife, let alone a kitchen knife. Oysters, however hard their shells may feel, are very delicate. Using a different knife for the purpose risks breakage of the shells or, worse, injury to your fingers.
Q: What Should We Know About Eating Oysters?
A: Eating undercooked shellfish, clams, mussels, and oysters and consuming them raw put you in a risk of getting infections. Since oysters feed on the seawater, eating them raw brings you in contact with various bacteria and viruses. Eat at a restaurant that serves fresh oysters from adequate resources.
Q: How to Take Proper Care of My Oyster Knife?
A: Follow the cleaning guidelines that come with the knife to sustain its life. Wipe all your knives immediately after washing to prevent rust.
Q: Can I sharpen oyster knives?
A: Sharpening an oyster knife may not be necessary because other than popping open the hinge, the cutting edge sits idle. So if the tip has become dull, sharpen it to a fine point but be sure to keep the hardness as it is.
Enriched with flavors of the sea and its salinity, oysters are a treat to your taste buds and can turn any evening into a great one. We hope you enjoyed our best oyster knife reviews to welcome the seafood journey at home. Get one right away and surprise your family with a sumptuous oyster dish!