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What Is a Carving Knife Used For?

There is nothing more useful in the kitchen than a sharp set of knives. Knives can take care of many jobs when preparing a meal, making them an indispensable tool for many chefs.

What is a carving knife used for?

With all of the different types of knives that are included in a set, it can be difficult to know which knife to use in certain situations. This article focuses on the carving knife, and the specific uses that it was made for.

Carving Knife characteristics

The carving knife is a knife made to cut meat from cooked poultry and other meat roasts. These carving knives will usually range from 8” to 15” in blade length, but most carving knives will be closer to the 8”-10” range.

Carving knives are typically smaller to be able to the precise cutting that larger slicing knives cannot do. The blade of a carving knife will be a more rigid blade than that of a slicing knife, making it less flexible but more firm when cutting.

Carving Fork Knife Uses
Modern Carving Knife

Another characteristic all carving knives will have is a thin blade. This thin blade indicates that the knife is for cutting and slicing as opposed to chopping. A narrow, thin blade is important when cutting in certain areas, like when cutting certain areas of a turkey.

This thin blade allows for a more precise cut, making it a great choice of knife when you are going for an aesthetically pleasing meal. The thinner the blade, the thinner the cuts of meat will be.

Carving knives are often accompanied by a carving fork. This carving fork is meant to hold large pieces of meat or roast in place while carving. The use of a carving fork will make cutting the meat easier, as well as giving the chef a more precise cut, as the meat will not move while sawing.

Carving for is useful for this roast with a carving knife

Carving Knife uses

Due to the useful characteristics of the carving knife, it is one of the most used knives. Here are the uses that the carving knife suits the best.

Carving poultry, roasts, and other cooked meats

The main use of a carving knife is to carve (well, of course!). This means that carving knives are the go-to knife when cutting slices of meat from a cooked turkey, chicken, ham, or other large piece of meat.

The long, rigid carving knife blade is made to easily and efficiently cut thin slices of meat. The pointed tip allows for easier disjointing when cutting poultry and other meats, as the thin blade makes it easy to cut meat as thick or thin as you’d desire.

Everyday cutting / slicing

Carving knives are also the choice of many chefs when they are simply cutting or slicing anything in the kitchen. Carving knives are typically smaller than slicing knives, but bigger than the average chef knife. This makes it the perfect tool for simple, everyday cutting jobs.


The carving knife is an essential piece to any quality knife set. While they specialize in carving meats, carving knives can be used for many different jobs that involve slicing or cutting in the kitchen.

With the high number of different food prep demands that can be taken on with a carving knife, it would be beneficial to add one to your knife set soon!

Click here to read all about the best knife for carving pumpkins.

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