Seafood Cutlery: A Quick and Easy Guide


Let’s take a look at the essential cutlery needed to cut, gut, fillet and shuck fresh or cooked seafood in your restaurant or market.

Oyster, Clam and Scallop Knives

Oyster knives, clam knives and scallop knives are specifically made for the task of opening hard shells. The difference between oyster and clam knives can be found in the tip. Scallop knives are typically the shortest of the three.

Oyster Knife

Oyster Knife

This knife has a pointed tip, made to spear into the side of an oyster’s hinge. These knives are found in lengths of two to five inches long.

We Recommend: The Dexter-Russell 3″ Boston-Style Oyster Knife-Sani-Safe® Series

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Clam Knife

Clam Knife

It has a rounded tip, made to slide into the slight opening that each clam shell has. These knives are found in lengths between three and five inches long.

We Recommend: The Dexter-Russell 3″ Clam Knife-Sani®-SafeSeries

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Scallop Knife

Scallop Knife

This knife has a sharp rounded tip and caps out around two inches long.

We Recommend: The Dexter-Russell 2″ Scallop Knife-Sani-Safe® Series

Fillet Knives

Fillet knives have long, skinny and pliable blades that are designed to remove tiny bones from fish. Many seafood kitchens have fillet knives of varying lengths as it is best to try and match the length of the knife with the length of the fish.

Dexter-Russell Fillet Knife
These knives are designed with a shape and give that allows for optimal dexterity when maneuvering around bones. The trick to a perfect fillet it to have as few slices as possible.

We Recommend: Dexter-Russell 8″ Narrow Fillet Knife – Basics® Series

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Cut & Gut Knives

Cut and gut knives are the utilitarian tools for those who work with fresh fish on a daily basis.

These are used to slice through skin, clear away scales, fillet meat from bones and scoop unwanted parts out of the interior of the fish.

We Recommend: The Dexter-Russell 5″ Cut and Gut Knife-Basics® Series

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Fish Splitters

Fish splitters and forged salmon slicers are ideal for chefs who need to slice into salmon or other large fish.

Dexter-Russell 12" Fish Splitter

Fish Splitter

These knives have sharp, pointed tips for piercing thick skin and elongated blades to sweep the meat away from bones in smooth long slices.

We Recommend: The Dexter-Russell 12″ Fish Splitter-Sani-Safe® Series

Wusthof Forged Salmon Slicer Knife

Salmon Slicer

These knives are much like the fillet knife, but are constructed purposefully for working with larger fish.

We Recommend: The Wusthoff 12″ Forged Salmon Slicer

Lobster Splitters

Lobster splitters are perfect for breaking through the tough exoskeleton of a crustacean’s shell.

This knife has a name that suggests its use to be put towards working with lobsters, but the overall heft and power of the blade is ideal for any large seafood product that is has a thick skin or shell.

We Recommend: The Victorinox 13″ Lobster/Fish Splitter

To safely handle seafood through tasks such as gutting and filleting or shucking and cracking, a chef needs the right tools. Keep yourself and your employees safe and productive with the right seafood knife for the job.


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