The 9 Best Carving and Slicing Knives, Tested by Allrecipes
You'll reach for your chef's knife for most kitchen tasks, but adding a carving or slicing knife to your collection will make your life a lot easier. The longer, thinner blades on carving knives slice through large roasts and maneuver around bones and cartilage with ease. But the uses don't stop there: You can use carving knives or slicing knives to slice through breads, cakes, or large fruits and vegetables, like, say, a whole watermelon.
To help you find the best carving and slicing knives for your kitchen, we asked our veteran product tester, Rachel Johnson, to put the top options on the market to the ultimate test. She considered each knife's performance, comfortability, maintenance, and value.
With these considerations in mind, she found the Global Classic 2-Piece Carving Set to be a worthy option.
Read on to discover the rest of the best carving and slicing knives, according to our testing.
Best Carving Knives at a Glance
- Best Carving Knife: Global Classic 2-Piece Carving Set
- Best Budget Carving Knife: Messermeister Avanta Pakkawood 2 Piece Kullenschliff Carving Knife
- Best Slicing Knife: Victorinox Fibrox Pro Slicing Knife with Granton Blade
- Best Budget Slicing Knife: Mercer Culinary Millennia Granton Edge Slicer
- Best High End: Shun Premier 2-Piece Carving Set
- Best for Carving Poultry: Dalstrong Shogun Series Sujihiki Slicer Knife
- Best Set: Zwilling Pro 2-Piece Carving Knife & Fork Set
What To Consider When Buying a Carving Knife
Types of Knives
- Carving Knives: Most of the knives tested in this review are carving knives. You'll notice carving knives have pointed tips meant for maneuvering around bone or piercing joints. A carving knife is what you'll want for slicing your Thanksgiving turkey or any large roast that requires you to move around bones. They can also be used for slicing boneless cuts of meat, but their sharp tips are prone to piercing the meat, which can release some of the delicious juices onto your cutting board.
- Slicing Knives: These can be identified by their rounded tips and longer blades. They're generally meant for slicing through boneless cuts of meat, and their rounded tips prevent the loss of juices. Slicing knives are also an excellent choice for slicing through more delicate foods like breads, cakes, and even produce.
- Japanese Carving Knives (Sujihiki): A sujihiki, which translates to "muscle cutter" or "flesh slicer," is a Japanese knife that can be used for both slicing and carving. They tend to be harder, less flexible, and retain their edge better than their Western counterparts.
Stamped vs. Forged Knives
Knives are constructed one of two ways: by either stamping or forging. Stamped blades are literally stamped out of a large sheet of metal, like you would do with a cookie cutter on dough. Generally speaking, they tend to be lighter and less expensive, as they're less labor intensive to construct.
Forged knives are made by heating and hammering a knife out of a single sheet of metal, which results in a harder knife that keeps its edge for longer. For this reason, forged knives are going to be more expensive than their stamped counterparts.
It used to be that forged knives were considered to be better quality, but those lines are beginning to blur. In fact, our top pick from the 13 knives we tested is stamped from high-carbon stainless steel, a type of stainless steel with a high carbon content that makes it harder and more durable.
The knives tested in our review range in length from 8 to 12 inches. The shorter the blade, the more you'll have to saw, but a long blade can also be unwieldy when maneuvering around bone. This is why carving knives tend to average around 8 inches, while slicers tend to be 11 inches or longer.
Comfort is key when you're dealing with kitchen knives, and the handle plays a major role in that. Handles with some texture will help to prevent slippage if your hands are moist from grease or juice. We favored materials like pakkawood (wood that has been impregnated by resin for durability and water resistance), textured steel, or handles made of thermoplastic polymers that provide a nonslip grip.
The Best Carving Knives of 2022
Other Carving Knives We Tested
How We Tested Each Carving Knife
To test each knife and/or knife set, Allrecipes product tester Rachel Johnson used each one to break down a raw chicken into separate parts, in order to test its ability to maneuver around bone and pierce joints. She also used each knife to slice through a round roast beef to get a feel for how much sawing is required to slice through a boneless cut of meat. During testing, Rachel paid special attention to the following factors:
- Performance: How easily does this knife carve and slice meat? Does it require a considerable amount of sawing?
- Comfortability: How heavy is the knife? Is it unwieldy? Is the handle comfortable to hold?
- Maintenance: Is it easy to clean, sharpen, and store?
- Value: Is it worth the money? Does it come with any additional tools, such as a meat fork?
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