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Nerdy Science in the Kitchen

Best Knife For Trimming Brisket



You made a perfect brisket. Trim it with the right knife.
You made a perfect brisket. Trim it with the right knife. The Dexter Russel Boning Knife at Amazon.

Trimming your brisket is an extremely important step toward creating a delectable piece of meat. The way that you trim and slice your brisket actually has a big influence on the final taste of it. Considering how long it takes to prepare and cook your brisket, it doesn’t make sense to ruin it right at the end by using the wrong knife.

Shall we cut to the chase? My fave is the Dexter Russel Boning Knife.

Luckily, there are affordable and effective trimming knives available that will give you a perfectly trimmed brisket every time. Look for the following elements to find the best trimming knife available. Then check out my recommendation and the importance of caring for your knife to make it last.


extremely thin slices of brisket in a pile on a white table
Slice your brisket as thin as you like it with the perfect blade.

The blade of your trimming knife should be made out of a durable material that you can sharpen. Look for stainless steel and carbon steel. Make sure to keep the blades as sharp as possible for maximum control while trimming your brisket.

In terms of pliability, a semi-stiff thin knife is best. You don’t want something that bends too much that will compromise control. You also don’t want a knife that’s too stiff or large to glide through the meat with ease.

Along those lines, the shape of your blade should also be somewhat curved in order to get into the crevices and to match the shape of your brisket. Stick to these blade characteristics and you’ll be able to easily trim your brisket without accidentally taking off any meat.


The handle of your trimming knife is also very important. It should be ergonomic, easy to grip, and comfortable in your hand. This may mean getting a larger knife if you have large hands, or a smaller one for small hands. Think about what shape and size handle would give you the most control and ease while handling your brisket.


Ideally, your trimming knife should be about 6 to 8 inches, depending on your unique needs. As mentioned above, if you have smaller hands, a smaller 6 inch knife will be more comfortable for you. But if you make a lot of brisket at a time, it might be easier to handle with a larger trimming knife.

This range is generally the most beneficial because it’s not too small that it will take forever to thoroughly trim your brisket, but not so big that you lose that all-important control and precision. At this size, it also becomes a very versatile kitchen knife that you can keep using for preparing other types of meat dishes as well.

Top Pick: Dexter Russell 6” Boning Knife

Dexter-Russell Boning Knife, 1-Pack, WHITE

The Dexter Russell 6 inch boning knife checks off all the boxes. It’s made from strong, durable high carbon steel. The thin, curved edge makes for easy trimming, and it’s right in the perfect range of size. The handle? Easy grip. They advertise “Grip-Tex” technology on the handle, meaning they crafted it with comfort and safety in mind. At a relatively affordable price, this is a great buy for your brisket trimming needs.

See the Dexter Russell Boning Knife at Amazon.

Some users say that if you have very large hands, this may be difficult for you to get a good grip on, in which case, you may want to find a larger knife (Dexter Russell has options, but there are many more on the market as well).

Others complain of rusting. This is annoying, but some quality knives need extra care. Avoiding rust is simple. Just never run it through the dishwasher, hand wash it, and thoroughly dry it after each use.

Other than that, this knife gets top reviews online for its trimming abilities. It is made in the USA. The sharpened and ready to cut blade stays sharp for months to years, depending on how often you use it. This knife will easily trim all different types of meats without removing any of the good stuff. It’s a great value for the seasoned brisket maker or anyone new to the game.

Maintenance and Care of Your Brisket-Trimming Knife

The Dexter Russell stays sharp and doesn’t need much extra care beyond cleaning. But you should still know how to properly maintain the integrity of your brisket knives, or any other special knives in your kitchen. This can increase their lifespan and help you get a better and longer value out of your purchase.

A brisket this excellent calls for an equally excellent knife for trimming...
A brisket this excellent calls for an equally excellent knife for trimming…

And the best knife to cut up whole chicken?

The number one rule is to never put kitchen knives in the dishwasher. The heat and chemical detergents can seriously damage the handle. Hand washing and drying immediately is a much better practice. It’s also best to have some sort of protective sheath to store them in to protect the edges of the blade (and your hands).

In terms of sharpening, you can buy your own sharpener or take them to a professional to sharpen them for you. Depending on how often you use it, you should sharpen your knives anywhere from every few months to every two years.

Keeping all of these things in mind will give you the best possible knife for trimming your brisket. The job of trimming brisket will become easy and more enjoyable than ever.

Additional Resources

Image credit via Flickr Creative Commons: Tim H. and Fatherspoon
Image credit via Flickr Creative Commons: “brisket” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by stu_spivack

Kitchen Professor author
About the Author: Alexis DeAnda

Alexis DeAnda is a food fanatic, library card user, and cast iron hunter, in that order. She has been cooking for anyone that will taste it ever since her mom let her make doughnuts on Saturday mornings at the age of 7.

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