Best Fillet Knives for Salmon: Get Maximum Flesh

Spend less time prepping salmon with the long blade knives that slice fish effortlessly. Two are under $50!

Updated May 19, 2022

Every cook would love to have the perfect cutlery in their kitchen. If you like fishing or just love having fish as a meal, a knife for filleting might be essential among your appliances. However, for a cooking enthusiast or a chef to have the perfect knives for each purpose, they would have to look in and do time-consuming research; since there are so many options to search from.

We are glad to say that we are saving you the trouble of research and comparison: In this guide, you will find diverse fillet knife options from each price interval. With presenting numerous details from the handle’s construction to the blade’s features, we have prepared this guide to make sure that your purchase feels comfortable, balanced, and powerful in your hands at the same time.

Here are our picks;

#1 Best Overall DALSTRONG Gladiator Series 7" Fillet Knife 

At first glance at this item, we first notice the finesse in the design. A single piece of steel, a thin body, and a slight, graceful curve. This blade has more length in the body and is designed to be a highly flexible one, to perform all the filleting, boning, skinning, or butterflying fish and poultry. The 1.5mm thickness provides the blade with superior flexibility and razor sharpness at the same time. To shape the blade, german high-carbon steel ThyssenKrupp is used and given a 14-16 degree angle. The spine is hand-polished, and it offers great edge retention. The blade has a military-grade G10 Garolite handle, which is triple-riveted with highly impervious fiberglass resin. For stain resistance purposes, chromium is also added to the design. On the Rockwell hardness scale, this blade is rated HRC 56+. 


Retains shape, sharpness, and resilience better than other blades made it a winner for us.

Overall, this blade is excellent for delicate works that require a bit more maneuvers in the cuts and finer knives. Last but not least, the purchase includes two sheats: one for outside use and one for storage purposes in the kitchen. The sheathes are simple, but do the job they're intended to protect the fillet knife during storage. However, we should also note that working with more delicate and thinner knives requires cautious and gentle motions not to do any damage to the blade, the food, or yourself.

#2 Best for Large Fish Mercer Culinary Millennia Granton 14" Edge Slicer

The second knife on this list is the edge slicer by Mercer Culinary. This is a blade that is manufactured with non-staining superior quality Japanese steel; therefore, we could state that edge retention is near perfect and even if the blade got dull or blunted, any sharpening process could be done in no time with ease. The manufacturing brand states that the handle parts of their blades are made with Santoprene and polypropylene materials, and given a slight curve in the design where it meets the steel. This particular feature in the design is what makes the knife safer to use by offering finger protection.

Longest Blade

Preeminent length combined with Japanese steel shaped the perfect slicer knife.

In addition to the handle, the blade part also has a prominent feature: it is long enough to slice through any roast or brisket. Moreover, users online always claim that their purchases arrived in razor-sharpness. Including the fact that Mercer Culinary also offers a limited lifetime warranty with the purchase of the item, when all things considered, we can safely say that this knife is also a great deal for the price.

#3 Best for Outdoor BUBBA 9 Inch Tapered Flex Fillet Knife

The next great fish knife on this list, we are looking at the perfect fillet knife for outdoor purposes: the very striking detail about this item is the signature BUBBA red rubber handle. The design of the handle is a combination of non-slip grip, trigger grip, and safety guard parts to offer maximum protection, all combined to shape the best filleting appliance to use in any fishing trip. Needless to say, this is one of the safest designs since it is originally manufactured to endure any water encounter or damage that can be done on the knife by saltwater.

For Fishers

An exceptional fishing-outdoor knife with the signature handles that are the red soles of cutlery.

On the 9-inch blade part, high-carbon stainless steel is used and the blade is given a quite thin design for flexibility purposes. In addition to the fine styling of the steel, the blade is also rust-resistant and Titanium-Nitride coated. Like most of the blades done by BUBBA, this blade is also narrow in design; and when combined with the flexibility, we have the perfect knife for filleting without any loss of the meat. For carry purposes, the knife comes with a sheat that you can put on your belt.

#4 Best Diversity MAIRICO Ultra Sharp Premium 11-inch

The next in the list a bit more diverse and versatile knife takes place, Mairico Carving Knife. Manufactured in China, this knife is not only designed for sole fish, but it is also suitable for slicing meat, fruit, vegetables, and roasts too. With an 11-inch blade, this knife is great for working larger cuts with convenience as well. To put it another way, this knife can slice through tough meats briskets, pork loins, turkey, ham along with filleting delicate cuts such as salmon or simply any fish. When we look at the handle, we see that this knife is also manufactured as a whole part of steel, and covered on the handle. Thus, this contributes to the knife's durability.


Offering more than just working with fish and filleting: A diverse knife to slice with ease by Chinese cutlery brand Mairico.

Not only is this a multipurpose knife, but for the features we get, the price of the knife is a great offer. Last but not least, you will receive your purchase in a box; thus, a great place to store your knife after each use for convenience and safety. Mairico also notes that they guarantee the top performance, thus, they state that they will do a full refund in case of any dissatisfaction and return of the knife.

#5 Best Budget Rada Cutlery 12-1/4 Inch Fillet Knife

Next, we are looking at a complete fillet knife: a 7 and a 1/8-inch blade, with an almost invisible, just the perfect curve in the design. Manufactured by Rada Cutlery, in the USA with more than 50 years of experience. A thin and razor-sharp blade to slice through fish with ease. When we say that is the complete fillet knife, we refer to the great flexibility potential in the design of the blade, which makes it perfect for boning.

Cheap Pick

Beside its affordable price, life-time warranty brings great trust.

While the blade part is manufactured with surgical grade T420 high-carbon stainless steel and sharpened by hand, the handle part is manufactured with rubber to prevent slipping. A plus is that you will receive a leather scabbard that can be put on a belt on any fishing trip, or you could use it for storing the knife conveniently.

#6 Best High End DALSTRONG Shogun Series 6" Fillet Knife

Dalstrong is a brand that produces in China and is famous for the Shogun Series, and this 6-inch fillet knife is one of the most assertive ones. Dalstrong claims that their 8-12 degree angle blade has a “ruthlessly sharp scalpel-like edge” and adds that the knife is hand-finished. There are more features of this blade: the ultra-sharp AUS-10V Japanese super steel is nitrogen cooled for flexibility and durability. On the Rockwell hardness scale, the blade is rated HRC 62+, needless to say, a quite solid one. Moreover, the 67 layered Damascus sharpened blade is narrow in the design and takes a slight curve near the tip.

Top Quality

A blade that is small in size yet one of the most durable. Enhanced by 67-layered Damascus steel, manufactured with distinguished Dalstrong quality.

The blade is covered with rust-resistant cladding, therefore, it is designed with the intention of lasting longer and being a lifetime blade. Manufactured with 2.00 mm thickness, thus, flexible enough to work any bone, joint, or skin. The handle part is defined as a G10 handle, manufactured with highly impervious fiberglass resin. In short, superior craftsmanship has gone into the blade part of this great knife. Last but not least, Dalstrong states that a sheat is included and offers a lifetime warranty with the purchase of the item.

#7 Best Hollow-Edge WÜSTHOF 11" Hollow Edge Salmon Slicer

Last in this list is manufactured by the German cutlery brand Wüsthof. Wüsthof is a family-owned company for seven generations and it is known for its long history: they have been producing knives from 1816 onwards. Safe to say, they have mastered the art of cutlery, and this knife by them is an example on point. This 11-inch high-carbon stainless steel salmon slicer knife is designed with a hollow edge. Needless to say, 11 inches is an outstanding blade length among other options; therefore, this is a blade that will give you a lot of room and ease of movement.

Old School

An outstanding example of cutlery technology: a modern laser-crafted knife with 200 hundred years of experience.

At a quick glance to handle part, we come across a full-tang design with synthetic polypropylene for heat resistance and to retain the color. In other words, this knife consists of a single piece of steel from top to the end, and the polypropylene handle part is made to cover the steel. Moreover, the knife is laser-cut stamped. Last but not least, Wüsthof notes that their knives are designed to resist corrosion and dulling; that every purchased set comes with a limited lifetime warranty; and adds that the knives should be hand-washed only.


What is the difference between a fillet knife and a boning knife?

When it comes to cutlery, fillet knives and boning knives are often confused. In fact, they both have quite apparent differences. When you see a fillet knife, you will realize that these types of knives have the most elegance in terms of design: a curvy blade, a pointy tip, and a thin body are the main 3 features of a fillet knife. All three combined, shape the most essential feature of a fillet knife: flexibility.

Boning knives, on the other hand, are sturdier in construction because they are made to slice through beef or pork. You will also find that boning knives are thicker in design. They are not a suitable option for working with fish and due to the tenderness of the meat. In addition, a stiff blade won’t probably allow you to maneuver in the fish or the skin.

What is best size fish fillet knife?

The length of fillet knife is important because it shows how much fillets you can make. A fillet knife with a 7" blade is the most common and is perfect for people who fillet fish for a living. If you fillet a lot of fish, then we recommend having a longer knife. There's even 14" fillet knife as well! Fillet knives with longer blades tend to be more flexible, which is a good thing for filleting salmon.

How can I cut salmon?

If you fillet fish for a living then you might already know how to fillet, but if not it's quite easy. First of all, the filleting process starts by scaling the fish. After doing that, you put your fillet knife between the skin and the flesh with one hand and pull gently while cutting in an upward movement with the other hand! The goal is to avoid using any excessive force and make sure that both sides are even in terms of thickness.

Once this step is done, you can move on to removing skin from fillets. You do this by cutting fillets open lengthwise and pushing them towards tail part of salmon so that flesh side faces down when filleted salmon is laid out flat on table.

How can I sharpen a fillet knife?

The fillet knife can get dull over time, and there are different ways of sharpening fillet knives. The best method is to use a fillet knife sharpener that uses water (or oil) to create an edge by removing the dull metal from the blade through a series of small abrasion steps. There's also hand fillet knife sharpeners which you simply draw against steel while applying pressure with your fingers! Generally speaking, filleting knives do not get as dull as other types of knives but if they do then we recommend using professional fish filleting tools or electric fillet knife sharpeners. It only takes few minutes or seconds to sharpen your fillet knife, so it's worth spending few minutes doing it.

Do fillet knives rust?

Filleting knives can get rusty, especially if you fillet fish on a regular basis. Fortunately, fillet knives have handles so you can protect them from getting rusty. All fillet knives come with protective sheaths that you can use when filleting fish, which make filleting safer and easier! If you fillet fish often then we recommend putting your fillet knife into a protective sheath.


A good fillet knife should have some very basic features: flexibility, thinness, and razor-sharpness. In short, fillet knives, or cutlery in general are equipment that have a lot of variations in these features: the fact that whether they are made to be used in the kitchen or outdoors on a boat is the main factor that determines the design and the type of the knife. When it comes to cutlery, there are always great options within every price range: we have covered some of the best among these various options so far and hope that you found this guide helpful while choosing a suitable fillet knife for your needs.

In conclusion, the fillet knife we recommend for salmon filleting is DALSTRONG 7" Fillet Knife - Gladiator Series. It's perfect for filleting fish with its long blade and flexible design that makes it easy to get through even thicker scales of skin on a Salmon. If you are looking for high-quality filleting knives designed specifically for delicate or thinner cuts then this might be the right choice for you! 

You can always find more detailed reviews, tips, and guides on every type of kitchen appliance on Use&Cook. Don’t forget to check out our other articles about cutlery equipment and we wish you a lovely day!

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About the author 

Dianne Centeno

Dianne is the editor-in-chief and also one of the main writers of Use&Cook. She has an endless curiosity for new kitchen ideas and products which keeps her motivated. Her technical background is also the key to make complex kitchen issues easier with the right set of cooking tools.

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