What is the Best Meat Cleaver?

If you’re looking for the best meat cutting knife then the meat cleaver is the weapon of choice for you. Unlike the other kitchen knives the meat cleaver is the only knife that is designed to be used like a hammer, using a big swinging motion you hack your way through tough meat – however this doesn’t mean you can run around the kitchen like Jackie Chan, so don’t get into character just yet!.

The meat cleaver has a very robust edge which is designed to withstand blows directly into dense cartilage, thick touch meat, and even bone.

The meat cleaver is undoubtedly the best knife for cutting meat but if you are wanting a knife to precisely remove meat from the bone then you’ll need to use a boning knife as the meat cleaver is simply too big to use on delicate meat prepping tasks. Think of the meat cleaver as a work horse to is use for chopping up large cuts of meat and carcasses.

Meat Cleaver Buying Guide

CleaverSizeBrandPricing RatingVisit
CleaverSizeBrandPricing RatingVisit
6-inchJ.A. HenckelsMedium★★★★★
7 1/2-inchWusthofHigh★★★★★
7-inchTop ChefLow★★★★
6 1/2-inchGlobalHigh★★★★

What Is A Meat Cleaver Used For?

As motioned above meat cleavers are used mainly for prepping large cuts of meat or cutting through soft bone and sinews. For example you can use a meat cleaver to cut up chicken into portions/cuts but did you know that a meat cleaver can also be used on fruits and vegetables? Using a meat cleaver on other foods such as a large pumpkins or squash is really a breeze and you don’t run the risk of damaging your other kitchen knives that have thinner blades.

The meat cleaver is very versatile; the sharp edge of the cleaver is used for cutting, you can turn the cleaver over to the blunt top edge and use it to tenderize meat, and turn it over on its side and utilize the clear for crushing garlic and ginger. And if you really want to put the meat cleaver to work you can use the flat end of the robust handle as a pestle.

Tip: What are the best knives for cutting meat? The meat cleaver and boning knife

Meat Cleaver Basic Care and Maintenance

As with any kitchen knife you need to store and keep the knife clean. Ideally cleavers should be stored safely either in a knife block or on a magnetic knife strip. They should be cleaned directly after use; for best results and to prolong the life of your meat cleaver always hand wash with warm soapy water, make sure you dry it completely as even stainless steel is prone to rust.

How To Sharpen A Meat Cleaver

The video below shows you how to easily sharpen your meat cleaver, you can also read more on how to sharpen your knives here.

Our Top Meat Cleaver Picks

J.A. Henckels International Classic Stainless-Steel Meat Cleaver

J.A. Henckels International Classic Stainless-Steel Meat Cleaver

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The J.A. Henckels meat cleaver is a classic looking cleaver that is weighty enough to do most of the hard work of chopping for you. You can cut almost anything with this knife including meat, vegetables and fruit. The blade has a hole at the top which is ideal for hanging the cleaver on a peg or hook.

This is a great meat cleaver from a well-known brand, the classic series are made to fit into anyone budget – so if you’re looking for a good quality knife that wont break the bank the J.A. Henckels meat cleaver is an excellent choice.

Victorinox Carbon Steel 8 Inch Curved Chinese Cleaver

Victorinox Carbon Steel 8 Inch Curved Chinese Cleaver

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If you read our site you’ll know that we love Victorinox kitchen knives and we always recommend the Victorinox chef knife to anyone who is looking for an affordable well made knife.

The Victorinox curved Chinese cleaver received high marks from us for its affordability, style and build and it easily slices and glides through the toughest of meats. As with many of the Victorinox kitchen knives the handle on this cleaver is made from a Polypropylene handle which provides superior grip and helps keep bacteria growth to a minimum.

If you’ve never owned a meat cleaver before and you are not sure which one to buy we can’t recommend this knife enough, it is a great knife – give it a try you won’t be disappointed.

Wusthof Classic Cleaver

Wusthof Classic Cleaver

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Wusthof kitchen knives are known worldwide and you’ll find many celebrity chefs holding a Wusthof knife. The Wusthof Classic Cleaver is at the higher end of the pricing scale and for many is not an option. However if you have the money to spend this is a knife for your collection.

The blade, bolster and tang have been forged out of a single piece of German high carbon stainless steel. And the cleaver’s blade has been laser tested for uniform cutting and for a longer-lasting sharp edge.

The handle has been made from a hard synthetic material for strength and durability and is held to the knife with 3 solid rivets.

This cleaver is about as good as it gets, it’s Well-balanced, very sharp and is able to easily cut through bone.

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