The biggest highlight during the Thanksgiving holiday would be holding the best slicing knife and a fork in your hands, ready to carve beautiful slices of your roasted turkey meat. Who wouldn’t love to watch pieces of such a delicious looking bird fall on your plate? Though not everyone finds a need to have a knife for every occasion, one of the things I’d personally like to add to my collection is a good old-fashioned slicing knife.
What is a Slicing Knife?
A slicing knife, or carving knife, is specifically designed to slice meat ‒ preferably cooked meat. It would enable you to slice large chunks of meat, like our favorites: Thanksgiving turkey, delectable brisket, juicy ham, and more! It is characterized by its thin, long blade. This is a knife that delivers delicate slicing with refined elegance (something that you won’t be able to do with most knives).
What is the purpose of a slicing knife?
A carving knife isn’t just meant for slicing roasts and cooked meat. It is more versatile than you think because it can serve other purposes like:
A slicing knife is pretty versatile mostly due to its thin long blade. The thin blade makes it a perfect knife for slicing up herbs. Thinner blades prevent green leafy vegetables and herbs from getting crushed.
It is also great for easily slicing starchy tubers like potatoes and tough yams. In addition, the long blade makes it a perfect knife for cutting up large fruits with a hard shell like watermelons.
We often relate a serrated knife to be the best bread knife. This may be true but a slicing knife can also cut up pieces of bread to perfection. The thin blade easily slips through the bread. This makes slicing baguettes and soft bread a breeze and even used it in layering cake.
A surprising usage of a slicing knife is filleting. It is a sharp, thin, and flexible knife which is ideal for filleting fish. Since the knife can bend and warp without sacrificing its sharp edge, it can also work as a skinning knife for fish.
A slicing knife is also known as a brisket slicer or a brisket knife. It holds the perfect edge and length to smoothly glide over tender brisket. Briskets are very easy to crush if you use the wrong knife. The wrong knife (even a sharp knife) can cause the brisket to bleed making it disgustingly inedible.
Do I really need a Slicing Knife?
Many don’t often see the need for a slicing knife. But in reality, it can replace more than two knives off your knife block. I’ve already mentioned some of the knives it can replace but other than these, the slicing knife offers better versatility especially in slicing cooked meat.
Though meat knives are pretty sharp, they are heavier to use. The slicing knife, on the other hand, is lighter and thinner and offers better control than any ordinary meat knife. It is well-balanced so it is very easy on the hands. With this, you can use the knife for a long time without getting cramped or tired.
The long blade works perfectly well in slicing food of various shapes and sizes. It is also ideal in slicing up both soft and hard fruits. It allows you to make smooth cuts or big chunks of meat. Instead of using a smaller knife, use a slicing knife to hack your way through a beautifully roasted ham or poultry.
The thin blade makes this knife very versatile. It adds to the balance of the knife. A long thick blade would be heavy for some but with a thin blade, the knife becomes very easy to control which can be suitable for almost everyone.
Slicing Knives Versus Carving Knives
Though we often mention these two interchangeably, there is a difference between a slicing knife and a carving knife. People often get confused when they look for the right slicing knife. However, not much know that slicing knife and carving knife are different. They both share the same function of slicing meat but there is more to just getting a smooth even cut of roast. There are considerable differences between the two.
Both knives are very long because both are designed to make even and larger cuts of meat. A carving knife has a blade is about 8 to 10 inches while the slicing knife is much longer ranging from 12 to 14 inches.
Both knives have double-beveled edges to make even cuts a much simpler task. However, the slicing knife is commonly a Granton edge because it prevents meat from sticking to the surface of the knife. It also makes slicing much easier and reduces knife drag. The blade of the carving knife is tapered while the slicing knife has a straight edge.
This is one feature that makes both knives distinguishably different from each other. A carving knife tapers at the end, up to a sharpened tip; while a slicing knife has a curved blunt tip. Though both knives serve the same purpose, the sharpened tip of a carving knife allows it to function as a boning knife. It can easily slice the meat off the bone and separate roasts from the joints. The slicing knife, on the other hand, is designed to make large slim cuts of meat. But, with a tapered edge, a carving knife creates a drag when making thin slices.
Because of the features of the knife, they both make big, even slices of meat. However, the slicing knife is also able to make thin slices of meat; making it function like a brisket knife. On the other hand, the carving knife can only make thicker slices of meat. The sharpened tip makes this knife a much larger knife than a boning knife and a chef’s knife but it has the function of both types of knives.
What to Look For When Buying a Slicing Knife
When you are going to buy a slicing knife, what you need to consider are the following:
- Blade material. Slicing knives need to be more flexible than tough. They are used to slice the meat of an irregularly shaped roast and flexibility allows thinner and better-looking slices of meat. Harder knives are meant for harder work but slicers need less power on the blade to perform delicate slicing tasks.
- Handle. The handle is definitely a factor. Comfort is number one but aside from that, it also needs to provide great control. The handle should allow the user to use the knife easily while providing comfort for prolonged usage.
- Maintenance. No knife is worth buying if it easily wears out in performing gentle tasks such as slicing roasts. Maintenance refers to how often your knife needs to be sharpened and how likely it is for you to use this knife in various tasks. Therefore, you should look for a knife that does not need frequent maintenance.
Best Slicing Knife in 2020
Mercer Culinary Renaissance Granton Edge Slicing Knife
Quality for Less Slicer
Built for long-lasting sharpness and easy maintenance, this slicing knife is one that will easily help you portion your brisket into a masterpiece.
Made of the strongest German steel this knife is built to last in your kitchen for a long time. It is very durable, allowing you to slice an entire turkey and more without the hassle. This particular German steel is a forged high-carbon steel that is completely rust-resistant and corrosion-free. This makes the blade comes with a great finish that is resistant to stain and discoloration.
Mercer knives are mostly forged to ensure top quality strength and break resistance. This brisket slicer offers supreme strength and versatility because despite being a hard knife, it can be quite flexible too. Its smooth bending blade goes back to its original shape making it a low-cost maintenance knife.
The handle is made of Delrin, which has a great wear and tear resistance. Delrin is a PolyOxy-Methylene (POM) which is a very strong and durable material. Even though this brisket knife is not intended for heavy use, the handle is made to ensure that despite the abuse, it can withstand the intensity of prolonged usage. It has a pretty high resistance to damage and with the full tang, you are guaranteed that it won’t easily get misaligned.
Aside from durability, the handle also has a beautiful curved design for better comfort in handling the knife. The handle also comes with a finger-guard as an added safety measure for the user of the knife.
The Mercer Slicing knife is part of its renaissance line. It’s a premium-quality blade line for Mercer. It is designed with a brushed finish to prevent the knives of this line from easily getting damaged. This slicing knife is very refined and offers you great control when slicing. It is especially great in slicing very tender meat (like the brisket) with absolute ease.
Under no circumstances should this slicing knife be washed in the dishwasher. A thin blade can be damaged in changing the temperature inside the dishwasher. It is highly recommended to wash the knife with gentle soap rather than keeping a knife in a warm and moisture-inducing environment.
The Mercer knife is a premium knife at practically half the price. This knife is incredibly versatile that can be a great everyday knife at home. In a gist, this knife is an ideal pick for anyone looking for an affordable slicing knife.
Wüsthof Brisket Slicer, Hollow Edge
The Best Slicing Knife for Large Cuts
Made by one of my favorite German knife manufacturers, this slicing knife comes with extra love from the extra length added for supreme cuts of meat in larger proportions. At 12” long, this is one of the longest knives in my list.
This brisket slicer is made of Chrom-molybdenum-vanadium steel. This steel is designed for extra power and since this particular knife series has a longer blade, it has better cutting power without adding too much pressure. The blade is strengthened with a natural element ‒ Vanadium, which is a rare element that becomes a safe yet very hard alloy when combined with other metals. The Wusthof brisket slicer is also very ductile, thus making this knife one of the thinnest in my list.
The handle is also made of POM, and this knife comes with a full tang that runs through the entire handle. The handle is highly resistant and is designed to withstand heavy impact and heat. It is also less likely to wear out ever after strong abuse. The handle has a gentle curve to provide comfort for all hand sizes and for easy handling.
The knife comes with smooth shallow Granton air pockets. The air pockets provide ease in making slices as well as making the knife easy to maintain. Some knives with a Granton edge have very deep air pockets that would become a hassle to clean since dust, dirt and soap residue would tend to stay in these air pockets.
The thin blade allows you to easily glide your knife through the meat without crushing it. Aside from being thin, the blade is also extra sharp. It isn’t just strong and powerful, it is highly flexible as well. This could be the perfect skinning knife for large fish. It can also be a great knife to use for making fillets.
Though the knife is dishwasher safe, handwashing is and will always be preferred. It also has a recommended 18-degree sharpening angle. Since this is an extra long knife, it is highly recommended that this knife be honed frequently especially before using it. This will help keep the blade sharply aligned all the time.
The extra length of the blade is a huge plus because it makes the knife very versatile type. allowing you to use this knife in various slicing needs aside from just carving meat off your perfect roast. It is a strong knife that is capable of handling delicate cuts.
Tuo B&W Cutlery Slicing Knife
Sexiest Brisket Slicer in the Market
Tuo is a master creator of functional art so each of their knives perform slicing needs in style. This slicing knife is not just an item made for show but offers any chef or cook with great results and smooth control.
This steel knife is a fortified alloy with a 440a metal code. This means that this knife is totally rust and corrosion resistant. A 440a steel code means that it has low carbon content resulting in a material that is less likely to get damaged by corrosion and discoloration. It is also non-reactive because it is a mix of metals creating a strong, yet highly flexible alloy. Having lower carbon content, it is quite bendable and has lesser breaking points than ordinary high-carbon steel knives. It is very ideal for slicing roasts.
Knives made with 440a steel offer a wide range of use due to its bendability. This knife was forged under high-temperatures to make the blade stronger and have better wear resistance. In addition, the knife is also very safe to use since it does not react to food. It is also stain-free and prevents discoloration, especially when handling various type of food.
It is also key to note that due to lower carbon content, this knife is much more affordable than most. Despite it being inexpensive, the quality of the knife is superb and that’s why 440a blades are made for outdoor camping because they are easy to maintain and handle.
The handle looks absolutely stunning. Instead of the typically outward-curved knife handle, the handle is curved inward. Surprisingly this offers a wonderful grip on the handle because it offers better comfort. With fewer curves to handle, it is perfect for all types of users including left-handed cooks or chefs.
The handle is made of a polymer composite with a smooth finish. The handle has a single rivet but it held together by a metal tip locking the knife and handle together. This tip makes the handle strong enough to handle abuse in the daily demands of a busy kitchen. Not only is the handle very comfy, but it also looks stunning in a choice of either black or white, the knife is incredibly fitting for a beautiful and modern kitchen.
This knife performs better than it looks and it looks absolutely divine. The knife has a special feature that is only unique to the TUO brand, it has a reverse dolphin fin (that’s what I decide to call it) at the base of its spine. The fin allows you to have a better grip on the knife and add support to the spine of the knife especially when adding pressure on the knife.
The fin reduces pressure on the knife itself preventing it from warping when used on tougher slices. It also adds comfort to the person using especially those with larger hands that need extra space to have a better grip of the knife. With this additional grip space, you can easily extend your finger on the blade for better support and control making this long knife one of the easiest knives to handle.
A knife made of 440a steel is known to be softer thus resulting to a knife with a softer blade edge. In this case, the fortified steel is strong and resistant to wear but it needs plenty of honing to keep the knife in top condition. A very flexible and long knife is great for flexible uses but the constant bending of the knife won’t guarantee it to bend back to its original alignment since metal is not elastic.
A TUO knife follows a 16- to a 17-degree angle for sharpening. Since this slicing knife is softer, it is also very easy to sharpen and maintain. A quick hone will immediately revitalize this knife to its original state and even give it a quick sharpening boost.
This is a very comfortable knife to use. Whether you are a beginner or a professional cook, control and flexibility are the strengths of this fabulously looking knife. What’s great about it is that the modern chic design does not compromise the function of the knife at all. In addition, it is very affordable and is surely worth every penny you’ll spend.
Victorinox Cutlery Wavy Edge Slicing Knife
Best Inexpensive Quality Slicing Knife
With almost a century of knife manufacturing experience, this knife is surely one that the brand is proud of. The Victorinox line is known for its stunning designs and superior quality that makes this knife very easy to use in slicing meat and in saving you tens of dollars in total cost.
This Victorinox slicing knife is made out of high-carbon steel that’s cold-rolled and stamped to perfection. The blade is finished with serrations which makes it not just ideal for carving meat but also for slicing bread.
The blade is temperature treated, meaning it is exposed to extreme temperatures both hot and cold to strengthen the knife. The fortified blade is designed to make more powerful cuts especially when it comes to meats of various density.
Briskets are known to have tougher meat on the outside but very tender meat right in the middle. For that reason, the serrations would be an ideal edge. Although this Victorinox knife doesn’t have air pockets, due to the serrations, it doesn’t need one. The serrations already serve as air pockets to make slicing such a breeze.
The handle is what makes this Victorinox different from the Fibrox line. The blade in this line and the premium quality knives are the same; however, the only difference lies on the handle. This slicing knife has a plastic handle unlike the premium line using high-grade polymer. But don’t worry, the handle of this knife is also highly resistant to general wear and tear conditions. The matte finish of the knife provides great grip both in wet and dry situations.
The knife is very simple yet of quality due to its serrated blade because it doubles the function of the knife. The sharp serrations make this knife very ideal for cutting not just meat but also tender fruits and vegetables like berries and tomatoes.
This knife requires a sharpening rod instead of a whetstone due to the serrations. But because this knife is fortified, there is less need for you to sharpen the knife. It has a temperature-treated blade which requires less frequent honing and sharpening.
This knife is not just inexpensive, it has all the qualities of a high-end knife. It offers great power and control and would be a superb choice especially for those on a tight budget.
Comparison of The Best Slicing Knives
Let’s have a more detailed overview of the knives in our list
Stamped or Forged
Dupont’s Derlin plastic handle
Chrom-molybdenum- vanadium steel
High-carbon cold-rolled stainless steel
Carve Like a Pro: Cool Slicing Tips You Need to Know
Not everyone can be an immediate expert in carving delicious juicy roasted meat, but here are some tricks to help any newbie look like a pro.
From Heel to Tip
When you are slicing, always start from the heel of the knife to the tip. This will make it easier to cut bigger and wider chunks of meat in one swipe. Some would often slice from tip to heel but this will cause a knife drag making an uneven slice of meat.
Glide the Knife
Swiping the knife in one glide is better. Once you cut the meat, swoop the knife to have a clean cut. Some would often make the mistake of using a slicing knife as a saw and hack their way into the meat. This results to knife drag, uneven cuts, and a messed up roast.
Reduce the Pressure on the Blade
Pressing down on your knife instead of gliding your knife results in crushing the roast. A slicing knife is very sharp so the best approach is to press at the base of the spine and not put the weight on the blade.
Let Your Roast Rest
Don’t be too excited to cut your roast as soon as gets off the oven. The ideal time to slice would be when roast gets denser after it has cooled down. I highly recommend that you let your roast rest for about 15-20 minutes. If you cut the meat too early it is prone to be crushed.
Use a Carving Fork
Let’s face it, when handling meat, we only think that a knife is enough. Using a carving fork is becoming old fashioned (for many) but the reality is, you get better slices this way. It is also a great way to carve roasts safely. But remember, you only have to push it so deep. Just press on your roast until it holds the poultry, then you can ease your slicing knife and make amazing cuts of meat.
Use Toothpicks to Fix Your Poultry
This is a very fun trick when it comes to slicing poultry. One of the hardest things to slice is a whole chicken, pheasant or turkey. Even if you use a carving fork to make your poultry steady, they still wobble. To make it easier to carve your meat, put toothpicks at the bottom of your poultry to serve as stoppers. It doesn’t have to be toothpicks all the time, you can also use other things like slicing a piece of potato, pumpkin or other things lying around your kitchen. As long as it adds height to your poultry, it will make slicing so much easier because you won’t end up with a fat wobbly roast. An unstable piece of roast will keep them from rolling away. It will also prevent drags and unstable slicing.
Don’t Slice Everything at Once
You only need to slice what is enough for everyone to eat. When you slice the entire roast, the leftovers will dry up easily which is tough to eat. It’s best to leave a whole roasted leftover because it can retain most of its moisture. This way, you’ll be able to enjoy a tender juicy roast for your next meal.
The Final Verdict
Hands down, the decision for the best slicing knife would be the Tuo B&W Slicing Knife. It is the BMW of all knives because it looks stunning and offers twice as much function due to the design. And aside from great quality, this knife is also very affordable which is ideal for many home cooks or chefs. My choice for the most cost-efficient knife is the Victorinox Wavy Edge Slicing Knife. This bang for your buck knife offers superb edge retention due to its premium quality blade and superior durability. These two knives are great for both home and professional kitchens. They are high performing knives that make it easy for anyone.