What Is a Boning Knife Used For: A Beginner’s Guide

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Knives are essential tools in every kitchen. There is a specific type of knife for a particular task, but we will focus on boning knives. We will answer the questions, “What is a boning knife used for? and How is it different from other knives?“.

We will also ​look at the different varieties of boning knives and how to use them properly.​ Plus we’ll also provide you with some tips and pointers on what to look for in ​the best boning knife.

What Is a Boning Knife?

A boning knife has a sharp, thin, and flexible blade that can easily remove the skin and bones of meat and fish. Its specially designed curved blade lets you cut the meat away from its joints and bones cleanly without any wastage. It also enables you to cut thin and precise slices of meat and fish.

What Is a Good Boning Knife?

More often than not, the tastiest part of the meat is the one nearest the bones. If you don’t use ​a good quality ​boning knife, then you leave the flavorful part still attached to the bones. That’s what happens when you use an ordinary knife to do the job.

You can also save a lot of money if you can fillet a salmon, trim a brisket, or even cut a whole chicken using the right kitchen tool.

A good boning knife suitable for both professional and home use is the classic type. It usually has a soft and flexible blade that can follow the outline of the bone or the fillet of the fish. Sharpening its edges using the conventional sharpening system should never be a problem as well.

Our favorite pick is the Smteng Boning Knife,  and we carried out a full review for you.

Another characteristic of a good boning knife is the way it holds its edge and the length of time it stays sharp even with constant use. However, the user’s skill and familiarity in handling this kind of knife should also be taken into consideration for it to be considered functional.

Do You Need a Boning Knife at Home?

Needing something is a matter of personal choice. In this case, a boning knife is still a knife. You can use it in so many ways around the kitchen and not just to debone a slice of meat.

​Determine what kind of cook and homemaker you are to know what your actual needs are. That way, it would be easier to know which type of knives you need in your kitchen. For some, having a boning knife in their kitchen is not as important as having the ever-dependable all-rounder – the chefs knife.

It’s possible you could make do with a fillet knife but deboning re meat compared to fish is a different task and you may find a fillet knife iis too flexible when dealing with strong bones. Check out the main differences between a boning knife and a fillet knife here.

What Is a Boning Knife Used For?

Choosing to have a boning knife in your kitchen arsenal plus having the knowledge to use it properly will prove that this type of blade can also be useful in many ways and will be a great addition to your tools.

It makes tasks such as deboning a pork shoulder or separating the bones in baby back ribs a doddle.

what is a boning knife used for

How to Hold a Boning Knife

When it’s your first time to use a boning knife, make sure you always cut away from your body. These knives are sharp and may cause accidents and unwanted injuries if not handled correctly. There is also a proper way of holding a knife, depending on its type, so you must understand how to grip a knife to get excellent results correctly.

When gripping a boning knife, you should use your three fingers and thumb to hold the handle while the index finger must be strategically placed on top of the blade. This is highly recommended, especially when deboning a chicken breast using the tip of the boning knife.

​Boning Knife Uses

Now that you know how to hold a boning knife, here are some common uses of a boning knife plus how you to do each process:

Removing Bones

In this procedure, ensure that you have a cutting board with enough working space to complete the task successfully.

  1. Lay the meat flat on the center of the board.
  2. Locate the meat from the bone and cut the outline of the bone using the tip of the knife.
  3. Use a sawing motion with the rest of the blade to help detach the meat from the bone completely.

Removing ​Skin from the Meat

  1. Make a tiny cut in between the skin and the flesh using the tip of the knife.
  2. Firmly hold the skin you have separated from the meat as you continue to make small slicing motions while you pull the skin away from the flesh to separate them.

Removing Skin from ​a Fish Fillet

  1. Lay the fish horizontally on the cutting board with the skin facing down, making sure that the thinnest part of the fillet or the tail part is the one nearest you.
  2. Make a tiny cut of at least one to two inches from the bottom with the tip of the knife as you carefully lift the meat of the fillet while you’re cutting.
  3. After making the initial cut, you can now slide the blade of the knife between the skin and the flesh, moving the edge away from you until you reach the other end of the fillet. Do this procedure slowly to make sure that you only slice the skin without any traces of meat on it.

Other Uses for a Boning Knife

  • The flexible blade of the boning knife is also perfect for cutting mangoes and for separating the skin from the mango meat.
  • You can cut cookies using the boning knife if you don’t have a cookie-cutter available.
  • A boning knife is also suitable for drawing out the core from pears and apples without damaging the fruit.
  • Use a boning knife to core a cupcake if you want to add a filling to it.
  • A boning is excellent for preparing fruits for your fruit arrangement decorations or fruit trays.


​A boning knife has more uses than simply detaching the bone from the meat. It is a versatile kitchen utensil that can perform other essential tasks aside from what it is ​designed for. ​Owning a boning knife is not only about learning what ​a boning knife used for, but also making sure you know how to use it safely and efficiently. ​