Cutlery is an important commercial and home kitchen staple that can directly impact the preparation and presentation of food. Ever start chopping away inside your kitchen and wonder if you’re using the right knife? You’ll typically see key points such as size, shape, blade and type of edge when specifying the appropriate knife for cooking and food prep. Here, we’ve taken it a step further by offering general descriptions to serve as a basic guide for the most common knife types.
Boning knives have a sharp point and narrow blade. Typically available with blades ranging from 3″ to 8″ in length, boning knives are used in food preparation for separating and removing the bones from poultry, meat, and fish. Boning knives are not as thick as some of other popular kitchen knives, as this makes precision boning, especially in deep cuts and holes, much less difficult. A stiff boning knife is good for boning beef and pork, but a very flexible boning knife is preferred for poultry and fish.
Bread knives are designed with serrated edges to cut soft bread and fruits like tomatoes without crushing them. Bread knives can have straight or slightly curved blades and range from 6-10 inches in length.
Cimeter knives are curved butchers knives designed for trimming and cutting large meat portions. The cimeter’s long, sharp, curved blade helps with cutting close to the bone of products. Slip resistant nylon or fibrox handles are ideal, ensuring that the user maintains a firm grasp.
With a thinner handle and wider blade than traditional slicing knives, these sturdy cutting tools are perfect for separating larger pieces of meat, such as poultry, roasts, and hams into thin, precise slices.
Chef’s knives are ideal for everything from slicing meat to chopping and dicing fruits and veggies. Available in sizes ranging from 6 to 12 inches, chef’s knives are designed to perform a variety of tasks in busy kitchen. These versatile knives feature sharp, high carbon steel blades for more precise cutting, slicing and mincing.
Cleaver knives are ideal for slicing meats as well as chopping or mincing vegetables, and can even be used to crush bulbs of garlic or ginger. Cleavers feature large, stainless steel blades with wooden handles.
Designed specifically for Brazilian steakhouses, churrasco knives are the perfect cutting tools for slicing large chunks of meat directly from spits onto the plates of hungry customers. Constructed almost as a mix between slicing and carving knives, these unique cutting tools are great for slicing through cooked meat at all different angles.
Paring knives are used for small, intricate work like peeling and coring. A good paring knife typically measures between three and five inches on the blade. Paring knives are designed to be an all-purpose knife, similar to a chef’s knife, but on a smaller scale.