The 7 Best Fishing Fillet Knives 2021 | Top Quality Models Reviewed
If you are cooking with raw fish, it can be very hard to remove the bones from the fish and keep as much of the meat intact. Something is typically sacrificed when attempting to fillet fish. Either you waste too much time, you destroy too much meat on the fish, or that filleting fish is just too hard to do.
However, you can buy special knives that remove the bone from fish effortlessly without wasting time or ruining meat. These knives offer much more flexibility that greatly help when removing bones. Whether you are a fisherman that wants to make a quick meal, or a cook that is looking to make some gourmet seafood dinners, a fillet knife can do wonders.
Here are seven popular knives from brands like Rapala, BUBBA, KastKing, and many others. Each knife contains many benefits, as well as one or two detriments. Which is the best fishing fillet knife? Read this article and find out for yourself.
Comparison of Best Fishing Fillet Knife – 2021 List
Rapala Heavy Duty Electric Fillet Knife
KastKing Razor Sharp G4116 German Stainless-Steel Blade Fillet Knife (Editor’s Choice)
> 6.4 oz
BUBBA 9 Inch Tapered Blade Flex Fillet Knife
BUBBA Li-Ion Cordless Electric Fillet Knife
7, 9, and 12 inch
Calamus Fishing Fillet Knife And Bait Knives
Kershaw Clearwater 9-In Fillet Knife
Gerber Controller 8 in. Saltwater Fillet Knife
Recommended Top 7 Best Fillet Knives for Fishing 2021
1. Rapala Heavy Duty Electric Fillet Knife
Rapala is a well-known name in premium kitchen and cookware for good reasons. This is their first of two fillet knives that they have available. This is a reciprocating blade that is seven and a half inches in length.
This blade comes with a heavy-duty motor that makes filleting more effective than a fillet knife without a motor. It can move in twice as fast and three times as powerful as an ordinary motorized fillet knife. Thanks to this motor, the knife weighs nearly two pounds, which is slightly heavy.
The handle is made to fit comfortably in your hands, so that you can hold it with no pressure at any type of angle. Whether or not you really have to dig deep inside of a fish to remove a certain bone, you won’t feel uncomfortable by any means as you use this knife.
The cord on this motorized fillet knife is 8 feet long. Not too short where it wouldn’t reach, yet not too long where it would be in the way or serve as a tripping hazard.
The blade from this knife can be removed, and you can safely put it in the dishwasher like any other knife. Never ever put the motor in the dishwasher to clean, otherwise it will no longer work.
The one thing we would like to point out about this knife is that when you turn it on and use it, it does not feel all that safe. It rather feels like the blade will some off or fall apart at any second. While it does work like a charm, it still is not a good feeling to have the blade rattle in a way like it is about to fail on you.
2. KastKing Razor Sharp G4116 German Stainless-Steel Blade Fillet Knife
One of the best fishing fillet knives in the market today is KastKing’s razor sharp fillet knife. The 9 inch blade has an intricate design and is made of G4116 German stainless steel. This makes the blade resistant to corrosion and rust. It is a knife built for precise and high-level performance.
The blade is strong and sharp. Whether you are slicing, deboning, filling, it can get the job done. It can handle large fish, bait, and even meat. The small and sharp tip makes working through bones a breeze.
This fillet knife feels secure in anyone’s hand due to the non-slip super polymer grip. If you get your hands (and the knife) dirty, the handle cleans off quite easily.
The fact that this knife comes at such an affordable price makes it quite a steal. One of the best in the market today.
3. BUBBA 9 Inch Tapered Blade Flex Fillet Knife
If you come across a knife with a bright red handle, odds are that it is a Bubba Blade. This fillet knife comes with a strong blade that is made of stable and well-balanced steel that can be effectively used for cutting and removing bones from fish. The blade is nine inches long and is 11.5 ounces heavy.
The blade is also coated with a non-stick surface so that meat slides off the blade and does not stick to it. This blade is also razor sharp, thanks to it’s 58 Rockwell hardness rating, and does not rust, either, since it is stainless steel that is bonded with titanium. You know that you are getting an industrial strength knife.
The red handle, in our opinion, looks rather goofy, but it is actually no laughing matter, either. This non-slip grip handle is made of thermoplastic polymer that is inside of a rugged synthetic rubber. The textured lining gives you extra security when clutching the knife in wet, moist conditions.
The sheath that comes with this knife, which is more like a snug sleeve, is made of synthetic plastic, and can hook onto belts and other apparel with a hole on it.
The one thing we are not entirely sure about is the long blade that this knife has. If you want to cut hard, tough meat, you will enjoy using this knife. If you want to fillet fish with this knife, the excessive length might make it more clumsy to use, unless you are cutting large tuna or something else that is big.
4. BUBBA Li-Ion Cordless Electric Fillet Knife
The tools we use are an extension of ourselves. With BUBBA’s electric fillet knife, this is exactly the case as it is made to fit perfectly in the palm of your hands. With a non-slip grip, you’ll be filleting any fish easily and conveniently.
Purchasing this product grants you four types of blades. A 7 and 9 inch e-flex blade, and a 9 and 12 inch e-stiff blade. These blades are a trademark of the BUBBA line, boasting stiff knives and a tapered flex.
The blades themselves are made up of high-carbon stainless steel and are finished with a titanium nitride coating. This makes them resistant to corrosion while also making the meat just slide off like butter.
Another great thing here is the fact that it is cordless. You won’t have to worry about the cord and can work comfortably. It also helps when storing the product.
5. Calamus Fishing Fillet Knife And Bait Knives
Quality steel in a lightweight blade are the hallmarks of the Calamus fishing fillet knife. The G4116 German stainless steel is usually used for pharmaceutical and kitchen knives. The sharpness it provides allows for precise and powerful cutting. The G4116 steel also makes it corrosion resistant, easy to sharpen, tough, and has an edge that stays on. Even when used in saltwater, the edge still stays.
The flexibility and lightweight nature of the blade makes it very easy to use. It can cut quite efficiently. The flexibility is great to use when following the natural contours of fish. Add to that the non-slip rubber grip and really is a good and easy fit for the hands.
The knife comes with a nylon sheath that is just as light and sturdy as the knife itself. The sheath has pockets that allow for water to be drained out. This helps out with the corrosion resistance greatly.
6. Kershaw Clearwater 9-In Fillet Knife
Kershaw is another reputable company that makes kitchen knives. This knife does not come with an attached motor. This blade in particular is seven inches long, but they also have a version that is nine inches long.
This blade is said to be made of the same steel used by authentic Japanese katanas. The steel is stainless and is also resistant to corrosion, so that no stains or signs of wear appear on the blade for a long time.
Even though this blade is strongly influenced by Japanese steel and weaponry, it is made in America. Furthermore, this knife has a lifetime warranty.
Its textured, soft rubber grip makes handling with this knife easy. It even feels professional in your hands.
You can use this blade to cut a large array of seafood, including salmon, tilapia, snapper, cod, tuna, catfish and eel. The blade on this knife can cut through meat easily, as it boasts decent flexibility.
This knife does come with its own ABS sheath, which is like a cover for the blade when you are not using it.
Truth be told, however, this is not the sharpest knife that you can buy. It won’t cut through rock-hard foods, and you will often find yourself needing to re-sharpen it again and again. Sharp knives are important for making fine cuts and fillets in fish, so this is one thing to take into consideration. Don’t get your hopes up, if you think the warranty will cover this problem, either.
7. Gerber Controller 8 in. Saltwater Fillet Knife
The many people who have used the Gerber Controller fillet knife will attest to how well everything fits together. From the size of the blade, the grip, the shape, and the design, all of these contribute to filleting fish well. Due to its build, it does wonders in the hands of professionals.
One of the noteworthy things about this fillet knife is the durability. Made with high-grade steel, it lasts for a long time and prevents rust as well. It is great for use in harsh water conditions, even saltwater.
Just like the other knives, the sheath it comes with is also well-ventilated. This greatly helps out with rust and water-logging.
Buying Guide: Things To Know When Choosing the Best Fishing Fillet Knife for the Money
Nearly all fillet blades are made of steel, of the stainless variety. Even though they are all classified as “stainless” steel, some steels are more stainless than others. Quality blades are made with special steels from countries such as Germany, Japan or Sweden. If the blade was made in China, it is very likely that the manufacturer will not tell you where it came from.
The basic rule of thumb for buying fishing fillet knives is to buy one that comes from a trusted brand of manufacturer. If you buy a cheap knife, then odds are its quality is cheap as well.
Another thing to consider, especially when it’s a blade seven inches long or less, is its flexibility. You need a flexible knife so that you can maneuver with smaller fish. Longer blades are typically for bigger fish. Thicker, firmer blades are also necessary for filleting fish that are larger.
Fish fillet knives are usually in three different sizes: long, medium and short. The short blades are mostly idea for sunfish, panfish and perch. A short blade is around six inches or less.
Medium sized blades are around seven to seven and a half inches in size. These knives are for filleting fish such as walleye, bass or trout.
Large fillet knives are in between nine to ten inches in length. These blades for filleting bigger walleye, tuna, northern pike and so on.
Believe it or not, but the handle of the knife is also very important when looking for the best fillet knife. The more fish that you need to fillet, the more you will have to rely on the handle to help you gut them all.
With grip and comfort, you have control. It does not get any simpler than that. Fillet knives traditionally come with wooden handles. Today’s fillet knives will be made of rubber or plastic for more grip and comfort than wood. Wood handles can also make it slippery when handling fish guys as you work towards filleting a big catch.
For wood handles, you will have to clean and rinse them off by hand. Putting them in the dishwasher will ruin them, as wood quickly absorbs water and causes it to rot.
Some handles also come with indented finger grips so that you can place your hands exactly where to go. The shape of the handle can also make it easier or harder for your to get control of your best fishing fillet knife. These indented grips might not be the most ideal, as there are some knife owners that have hands or fingers that are too big or small for them. An alternative to indented finger grips are textured grips, that are usually made of rubber or another material.
Motorized knives work well, without you having to do much effort. They usually come with rechargeable batteries so that you can use your knife on the go. Some motorized knives can even connect to your boat’s battery or in a car cigarette port for additional battery life.
Of course, when a motorized knife has no life in it, it does not work well as a normal fillet knife. Motorizes knives only work as intended, and you need electric power or charge for them to work for you to the fullest. Usually, normal fillet knives have the edge over motorized knives for being more versatile, being used anywhere and anytime, and being overall lighter.
The fishing fillet knife that we most recommend to you is none other than the KastKing Razor Sharp G4116 German Stainless-Steel Blade Fillet Knife.
This is a highly reliable knife that has just the right length, just the right thickness and just the right weight. It is a highly comfortable knife to use and will last a number of years. You can enjoy various bone-free meals with this knife.
While the motorized knives are neat in their own right, you can take this knife anywhere you go, and it only stops working when you give up on it.
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