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The Ultimate Guide: Geoffrey Zakarian’s Recommended Knife for Slicing Meat

The best knife for cutting meat, according to Geoffrey Zakarian

Slicing meat with precision and ease is a skill that every chef strives to master. Whether you’re a professional chef or a home cook, having the right knife can make all the difference in achieving perfectly sliced pieces of meat. In this article, we will explore the insights of renowned celebrity chef Geoffrey Zakarian as he reveals his top recommendation for the best knife for carving meat.

Choosing the right knife

When it comes to choosing a knife for cutting meat, there are several factors to consider. Knives come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and materials, each offering unique benefits. According to Food Network, three essential knives can handle most cutting tasks in the kitchen: a chef’s knife, a serrated bread knife, and a paring knife. But for special occasions like Sunday roasts or Thanksgiving turkey, Zakarian suggests adding a carving knife to your collection.

The Carving Knife: A Chef’s Secret Weapon

Geoffrey Zakarian, as reported by WFLA, highly recommends a carving knife for cutting meat, especially for large roasts. A carving knife typically has a long, thin blade (8 to 12 inches) with a sharp point at the end. This design allows for precise carving around bones, minimizing meat waste. The flexibility of the blade also allows it to easily follow the contours of the meat.

The advantages of dimples and cullens

Zakarian’s favorite carving knife has a unique feature: dimples or cullens along the blade. These hollowed, oval-shaped dimples create air pockets between the knife and food, preventing sticking and reducing drag. As a result, you can slice through meat smoothly and effortlessly in a single pass. It’s worth noting that Western-style Santoku knives also have serrations, making them a versatile option for slicing meat.

German vs. Japanese Knives

According to the New York Times, the country of origin plays a role in the composition of high-carbon steel knives. German knives typically contain less carbon, making them softer on the Rockwell C scale than Japanese knives. This difference affects factors such as weight, shock absorption, edge retention and corrosion resistance. German knives offer durability and are less prone to brittleness, while Japanese knives tend to be harder and retain their sharpness longer.

Choosing the right knife for you

Ultimately, the best knife for cutting meat is the one that feels comfortable in your hand and fits your budget. While there are knives available at various price points, investing in a quality knife is essential for long-term use. Consider factors such as blade length, width, edge type, handle material, and overall aesthetics. Try different knives to find the one that has the right balance, weight, and grip for your needs.


In conclusion, Geoffrey Zakarian’s recommendation for the best knife for cutting meat is a carving knife with a long, thin, flexible blade. The addition of dimples or cullens along the blade improves slicing efficiency by reducing resistance and preventing sticking. Remember to consider your own preferences and needs when choosing a knife, as comfort and functionality are key. With the right knife in your hand, you’ll be able to slice meat with the precision and finesse of an expert chef.


Why is a carving knife recommended for cutting meat?

The long, thin, flexible blade of a carving knife allows it to cut precisely around bones and follow the contours of the meat, minimizing waste and producing clean slices.

What are the benefits of dimples or cullens on a carving knife?

Dimples or cullens create air pockets between the knife and food, preventing sticking and reducing air resistance. This feature allows for smooth and effortless slicing of meat in a single pass.

How do German and Japanese knives differ when it comes to slicing meat?

German knives tend to be softer and more durable, while Japanese knives are harder and retain their sharpness longer. The choice between the two depends on personal preference and factors such as weight, edge retention, and corrosion resistance.

What can a carving knife do besides cut meat?

A carving knife can be used to slice other foods such as roasts, hams, poultry, and even delicate items such as smoked salmon or prime rib. Its versatility makes it a useful tool in the kitchen.

Are there any special care tips for a carving knife?

To maintain the performance of your carving knife, it’s important to sharpen the blade regularly with a whetstone or hone. In addition, proper storage in a knife block or sheath can help prevent damage to the blade.

Can a carving knife be used by home cooks or is it primarily for professional chefs?

A carving knife can be used by both professional chefs and home cooks. Its design and functionality make it a valuable tool for anyone who wants to achieve precise and elegant slices of meat or other foods.

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