As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. Learn more

What Is a Butcher Knife? (Explained For Beginners)

Historically, the butcher’s knife was an essential device for mountain men. It was plain, beneficial, and economical to produce. The knives were very significant to their daily life. The butcher’s knife was utilized in almost everything that required the use of a sharp object and those that did not. The uses ranged from skinning beaver, chopping food, as a weapon for self-defense, and trimming.

What is a butcher’s knife?

A butcher knife is a knife created and utilized essentially for slaughtering or dressing animal meat. A butcher knife is widely used all over the globe in abattoir merchandise. The butcher knife functions well in chopping, skinning, and cutting meat.

Read More 10 Best Butcher Knives In 2021 – Reviews & Buying Guide

What does a butcher knife look like?

A butcher’s knife is big and has a curved blade. The blade is long enough to allow for smooth slices. The purpose of the curve is to enable it to get under the skin and around the bones when slaughtering.

The blades are extremely sharp, thick, and made of quality stainless steel metal. The long and curved blade is designed for butchering and dissecting a big chunk of meat. Other designs of the butcher’s knife have Granton edges for easy slicing through meat without pulling apart or shredding the product.

What is a butcher knife used for?


The butcher’s knife is used for various purposes. Some of the uses include;

  • Slicing- This is segmenting the meat into sections
  • Dicing- this involves cutting into small cubes
  • Copping- this is cutting repetitively into pieces
  • Deboning- this is the removal of bones from the meat
  • Filleting-this involves cutting meat into boneless strips

Why is there a hole in butcher knives?

The whole in the butcher’s knives is very significant. The following is an enumeration of the purposes of the hole;

  • The hole on the heavy-duty blade makes clipping through and between the bones simple.
  • The butcher knife hole assists the user to hold the upper section of the knife using their fingers.
  • The hole aids in the easy pulling of the blade freely as you hold up your grip on the handle.
  • It prevents the general vacuum from setting up between the object and maintains the blade free from the clippings.
  • It increases the speed of the clipping process.
  • The hole maintains the balance of the weight of the blades together with the weight of the handle.
  • Extracts from cuts into some hard materials like raw potatoes and pumpkin shells

How to use a butcher knife?

What is a butcher knife used for

When using the butcher’s knife, consider holding the knife by both of your hands. Curl the finger under to protect the fingertips

Non-knife hand

  • The thumb and the little finger should be behind the other fingers
  • Rest the side of the blade against the middle knuckles to prevent the knife from coming down to your fingers. This also helps to measure the size of the cuts
  • Make cuts downward with a rocking motion from the tip to the end of the blade.

Knife hand

  • Assess how the thumb and the first finger grip the blade beyond the handle. This assist in making the knife an expansion of your arm to give you better control and cutting precision
  • Hold the handle on one hand and the other hand to rest on top of the blade. This is especially when cutting small branches of herbs or garlic.
  • Keep the tip of the blade in contact with the chopping board. Rock the blade up and down until the food is cut to the desired size
  • Cut the vegetables and fruits into two before slicing to prevent slipping on the chopping board. This will prevent cutting yourself since they are anchored firmly on the chopping board.

How to sharpen a butcher knife?

When sharpening your butcher knife, the following procedure should be used

  • Place your butcher knife on a stable surface with the knife’s tip extending to the edge of the surface.
  • Grip the knife onto the sharpener lightly
  • Place your sharpener in a 90-degree angle
  • Use a downward pressure lightly drawing the sharpener along the blade up and past the knife’s point.
  • Repeat the downward pressure severally until you achieve your desired sharpness.

What is the difference between a butcher’s knife and a meat cleaver?

A lump of meat clever is a tool for chopping meat. It has a heavy and broad blade. Some of the differences between a meat cleaver and a butcher’s knife are;

  • Butcher’s knife blade is long and curved while the cleavers have a wide and long blade.
  • The butcher’s knife is used for slaughtering and dressing animals while the cleavers are used for crushing garlic, chopping vegetables, and slicing meat.
  • The butcher’s knife is greatly used in the abattoir merchandise while the cleavers are used in restaurants


Butcher knives are really a very essential tool for our everyday life. Because you can use it in several ways. But before using it you have to know what is a butcher knife and how to use it? In this comprehensive guide, I have explained everything about a butcher knife. I hope now you know all about a butcher knife and you can use it for your kitchen purposes.

Even very carefully I have discussed it, how to use it properly? Because a regular chef knife and a butcher knife have a lot of difference. And some differences make it very popular and durable to use from home to outdoor.