The Best Boning Knife for Your Kitchen

Fillet, debone, skin, and trim your fish, meat, and poultry with these sharp and efficient tools.

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The Best Boning Knife Options

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The boning knife is a bit of a specialty tool—not something everyone seeks out. Often they arrive in a set of knives and cooks see them as “the skinny sharp knife,” but then continually turn to them for tasks such as removing skin, filleting, and deboning, not even realizing that those tasks are the purpose of this tool. For cooks who butterfly steak, skin and debone fish, and buy bone-in cuts of meat for flavor but want to remove the bones before serving, choosing the best boning knife is worth the time and effort.

Boning knives are thinner than chef and carving knives. These tools are tapered to easily slip between skin and meat, with sharp narrow tips for getting into tight spaces. The blade of a boning knife ranges from quite flexible (so it can follow the curvature of a bone) to inflexible, for more confident trimming of heavier meats. Boning knives come in flat varieties or curved for increased versatility. The usual considerations for knife selection apply: the material of the blade and handle, riveted full-tang blades, and a comfortable hold are components to keep in mind when choosing the right boning knife for your kitchen.

Our Top Picks

This guide narrows down the market to showcase some of the top-performing boning knives available.

The Best Boning Knife Option: Dalstrong Gladiator Series Boning Knife 6"

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BEST OVERALL: Dalstrong Gladiator Series Boning Knife 6″

Made of forged German high-carbon Thyssenkrupp steel, the Gladiator Series’ full-tang blade is honed to a 14 to 16 degree angle for an exceptionally fine and durable edge. The Dalstrong blade is flexible to easily separate flesh from bones, while strong enough to handle heavier butterflying and trimming jobs. The blade has oval-shaped hollows ground into it to keep meat from sticking to the 6-inch knife, ensuring a clean glide even when removing skin. The ergonomic pakkawood handle is triple riveted for security and stability, then polished for a smooth feel. The Gladiator Series knife features a tapered bolster for excellent balance and finger protection. This Dalstrong boning knife blends flexibility with the strength and durability of quality construction.

The Best Boning Knife Option: imarku Boning Knife, 6-Inch

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EASIEST TO USE: imarku Boning Knife, 6-Inch

Imarku’s 6-inch Boning Knife is all about balance. Made with high-carbon German stainless steel for corrosion resistance and great edge retention, the steel-ended pakkawood handle and full-tang blade balance each other so well that the user can expect outstanding precision with minimal effort. The knife does most of the work for you. The rigid, straight blade is hand-sharpened to a 14 to 16 degree angle to minimize friction as the blade glides through meat. Ideal for skinning, filleting, and deboning, the imarku is also capable of slicing bread and rolls along with soft fruits.

The Best Boning Knife Option: Victorinox Curved Boning Knife, 6-Inch

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MOST VERSATILE: Victorinox Curved Boning Knife, 6-Inch

The curved, flexible stainless steel Victorinox blade is particularly suited to deboning fish: the narrow, beveled blade slips easily into small spaces to flick out small bones, and slides neatly between skin and meat. Poultry is also no challenge for this knife. The curved blade makes it easy to separate bones from meat without wrist fatigue from twisting to find the correct angle. The handle is made of Fibrox Pro material, which provides an ergonomic, nonslip grip even when wet. Victorinox offers this knife in several configurations to meet your particular boning needs. Available in flexible and semi-stiff blade tensions as well as a straighter blade with three levels of flexibility, Victorinox built this knife with enough variations to meet your skill level and boning needs.

The Best Boning Knife Option: Zelite Infinity Boning Knife 6 Inch

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BEST HEAVY DUTY: Zelite Infinity Boning Knife 6 Inch

The Zelite Infinity Boning Knife is crafted from heavy-duty Japanese AUS-10 steel, made up of 67 layers of steel for outstanding toughness. A gently tapered bolster protects fingers as it guides the full-tang blade into the rounded, ambidextrous G10 handle, providing stability and balance to the whole tool. The handle is triple-riveted to the blade and features Zelite’s signature “mosaic rivet” in the center. The 6-inch Zelite Infinity blade is sharpened to a 9 to 12 degree angle for excellent edge retention and razor-sharpness right out of the box. This is a particularly rigid blade, providing extra stability for heavy jobs but maintaining enough flexibility to handle delicate skinning and boning tasks. The Zelite Infinity is sandblasted to reveal the wavy layers of steel for an unusually attractive look.

The Best Boning Knife Option: TUO Cutlery Boning Knife

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ERGONOMIC PICK: TUO Cutlery Boning Knife

The robust pakkawood handle of the TUO Cutlery Boning knife first strikes users with its beautiful bulls-eye appearance, but it’s feel of the handle that makes this knife extraordinary. Gently rounded and tapered for ergonomic comfort, the handle is fronted by an unusually long bolster to protect fingers and give the cook’s hand a place to rest while performing delicate boning and skinning tasks. The slim, flexible German stainless steel blade adds to the comfort of using this knife as it allows for maximum yield of meat by hugging closely to the bones. At 7 inches, the blade is slightly longer than most boning knives, allowing the user to probe deeper into heavy cuts of meat or remove skin in larger swaths. The TUO Cutlery boning knife is a strong tool with exceptional maneuverability, designed to keep the cook comfortable during the precision tasks of boning, filleting, and skinning.

The Best Boning Knife Option: Global 6.25" Boning Knife

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UPGRADE PICK: Global 6.25″ Boning Knife

The dimpled handle of the Global 6.25” Boning Knife offers a truly nonslip grip while maintaining the highest standards of sanitation: the knife is made from one continuous piece of Japanese Cromova stainless steel, so there are no seams or connections to trap bacteria. Beautifully balanced, the Global features a straight, flexible blade for a combination of strength and maneuverability. A large, tapered bolster where the blade curves into the handle serves as a finger guard and ergonomic pressure point to make the knife safe and comfortable to use. The knife is exceptionally lightweight, but sturdy enough that the user won’t have trouble deboning thicker cuts of meat. The Global knife is something of an investment, but the beautiful craftsmanship and lightweight power make it worth considering, especially for cooks who find themselves skinning, deboning, and filleting regularly.

The Best Boning Knife Option: Sky Light Boning Knife

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BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Sky Light Boning Knife

The gently curved blade of the Sky Light Boning Knife is constructed from high-carbon stainless steel. The exceptional blade joins with a full bolster and three rivets to a military-grade ABS plastic handle, resulting in a seriously solid and maneuverable tool. The blade is nitrogen-cooled during forging to ensure extraordinary hardness while still maintaining modest flexibility. The 6-inch Sky Light blade is honed to a 17 degree angle on each side. The tip is also curved to an ideal angle, allowing users to access tiny spaces to fully debone even the most delicate fish or poultry. The Sky Light Boning Knife is offered at a low cost that makes it a reasonable investment, even for infrequent users who just want a quality tool.