Top 5 Fillet Knives for 2020

AOD'S Top 5 Choices for Best Fillet Knives

In this post I want to talk about the top 5 Knives that Acirema Outdoors recommends for your next pan fishing trip. Just keep in mind ALL FILLET KNIVES ARE NOT CREATED EQUAL Read until the end to get AOD’S Bonus Pick.

If you have been fishing since you were a kid did anyone ever teach you how to fillet a fish? If not check out my post “How to Fillet Pan Fish” it is really not as bad as you think it may be. The one thing that will make the process go smoothly for you is a good QUALITY and sharp fillet knife.

Fillet knives come in all shapes and sizes. There are different types of handles some made out of wood, some made out of plastic and even some have foam grips on them now. As a kid my dad showed me how to fillet fish with a knife that I think his father gave him when he was a kid LOL. The blade was dull it was about 6” long and it did not do a very good job if I can be honest with you.

After several trips over the first couple years of my fishing career my dad and I stopped at the local bait and tackle store on the way home from the lake. We had a cooler full of pan fish so I couldn’t figure out why we were stopping, we typically only stopped on the way to the lake to get bait.

We got out of the truck and walked in the store and my dad told me to pick out any fillet knife that I wanted and one that would be practical. To be completely transparent If memory serves me correctly I think I only had 2 choices LOL. One exactly like we already had and one that had a bright shinny blade and a cool looking birch handle. Even though my father has long passed I still have the knife today and all of the memory’s that go with it.

 This leads me to AOD’s first pick in fillet knives.

Rapala Fish ‘n Fillet Knives Classic

The Rapala Fish’n Fillet Classic Knife is available with a blade length of 4”, 6” or 7-1/2” If I am not mistaken I also believe you can find this with a 9” blade as well. If you want the classic fillet knife this should be your choice.

Made by Marttiini, the makers of premium Rapala fillet knives for over 50 years.

More guts than any other knife, this is the one that taught the world to fillet. A favorite since the early days of Normark® with over 100 million sold to date, this knife is used in more fishing camps, on more charter boats and by more fisherman than any other fillet knife in the world. Progressively tapered, flexible, full-tang blade of European stainless steel that takes and holds an ultra-sharp edge is securely anchored in legendary birch handle. All protected by a fine tooled leather Laplander sheath with “safety-first” free-swing belt loop that always keeps sheath and blade clear of the body. With four blade sizes to choose from, there’s one just right for every fish cleaning chore. Includes easy-to-use single-stage sharpener that keeps blade razor sharp.

  • Classic Birch Handle
  • Progressively tapered, full-tang blade
  • Safety Notch secures tang to brass ferule
  • Fine tooled leather sheath
  • Includes single-stage sharpener

You can find this Classic Fillet knife in the 20.00 to 30.00 range depending on the blade length

Bass Pro Shops XPS Professional-Grade Fillet Knife

Most if not all of Bass Pro Shops brands are top quality products and the XPS Professional-Grade Fillet knife is at the top of the quality list. So if it seems like you’re buying a new fillet knife every time you turn around, you can do better.

Our Bass Pro Shops® XPS® Professional-Grade Fillet Knife gives you an extremely manageable premium knife with superior toughness and durability. Its precision blade is crafted from quality 4118 German stainless steel with a Rockwell Hardness rating of 56-58, with a full chemically-bonded Armor-X® coating for exceptional long-term corrosion protection. Gently curved tip with just the right amount of flex for filleting, skinning, and deboning.

The 3-piece injection-molded TPR handle provides a firm, nicely balanced grip and provides both a lower index finger well and an upper thumb rest for maximum leverage, comfort, and safety. With proper care, our Pro-Grade Fillet Knife should handle your filleting needs for many seasons to come.

  • Extremely tough, durable premium knife
  • Precision curved blade with perfect flex
  • Crafted from quality 4118 German stainless steel
  • Rockwell Hardness rating: 56-58
  • Chemically-bonded Armor-X corrosion-resistant coating
  • 3-piece injection-molded TPR handle
  • Designed for maximum leverage, comfort, and safety

The XPS Pro-Grade Fillet Knife is available in a 7” or a 9” blade

You can find this fillet knife in the 20.00 to 25.00 price range.

If you are looking for a quality fillet knife for under 20.00 this would be AOD’S Pick.

Cuda Titanium Bonded Wide Fillet Knife


Unlike delicate thin-bladed fillet knives, the Cuda® Titanium Bonded Wide Fillet Knife is made for heavy-duty work. This is the kind of fillet knife that can handle extended processing, flexible enough for detail work but made with a wide blade to distribute the force; its oversized backbone adds additional strength and staying power. Its razor-sharp, corrosion-resistant German 4116 stainless steel blade is titanium bonded to hold its edge longer and is fully tanged for extra strength. Precision ground edge. Non-slip Cuda scale pattern grip; fits Cuda #18840 Knife Sheath (sold separately).

  • Tough enough for heavy-duty work, yet flexible
  • Wide blade design to distribute the force
  • Corrosion-resistant German 4116 stainless steel blade
  • Oversized backbone for extra strength
  • Titanium bonded to ensure long-lasting sharpness
  • Visible full-tang construction for maximum leverage
  • Precision ground edge
  • Non-slip Cuda scale pattern grip
  • Fits Cuda #18840 Knife Sheath (sold separately)

This knife comes in 2 blade sizes, a 7” and a 10”. The 7” is under $20.00

Another Top Pick from AOD is the New –

 Smith’s Mr. Crappie Curved Slab Sticker Fillet Knife


This knife is available in both a 6” Blade as well as a 7” Blade. It is both Ultrasharp and built for smooth-cutting precision. Smith’s Mr. Crappie Curved Slab Sticker Fillet Knife will work through the day’s catch with unbelievable ease. The 6″, curved blade is made of 420 stainless steel for a lifetime of reliable use. This fillet knife from Smith’s boasts a nonslip, soft-grip, ergonomic handle that puts you in total control while making concentrated cuts. TPU handle has a built-in lanyard hole. Durable plastic sheath included.

  • Built for smooth-filleting precision
  • Curved, 6″-long, 420 stainless steel blade
  • Nonslip, soft-grip, ergonomic handle
  • Durable plastic sheath included
  • Built-in lanyard hole

This knife comes in under the 30 dollar range.

If you feel like you need one of the top of the line fillet knives than take a look at AOD’S choice for Under 60.00 Check out –

Bubba Tapered Blade Flex Fillet Knife

The Tapered Blade Flex Fillet Knife from Bubba uses a patented, textured, no-slip grip plus full-tang construction from a single piece of steel for strength, stability, and balance. The high-carbon stainless steel blade is coated with a non-stick surface that’s bonded with titanium to help prevent rust and pitting. As a result, meat slides effortlessly off the blade. A trigger grip plus thumb and finger pads assure total control. Safety guards afford protection from the blade and spines of fish. The large, no-slip handle is made from thermoplastic polymer and wrapped with a synthetic rubber that stays sticky when wet for added grip security. A hand-sharpened blade boasts a Rockwell hardness rating of 56-58. Includes a custom black synthetic sheath with Velcro® straps.

  • 6″ handle
  • Large, patented, textured, no-slip grip
  • Full-tang construction
  • High-carbon stainless steel blade, bonded with titanium
  • Non-stick coating on surface of blade
  • Trigger grip
  • Thumb and finger pads
  • Safety guards
  • Includes custom black synthetic sheath with Velcro® straps


When my dad was still living we used to travel to Rice Lake every year for our week long fishing trip. We would always go the first week that the Canadian Season opened. I remember it like it was yesterday, we would bass fish from daylight until about 10 am and then get our ultra-light rods out and pan fish until about 6 pm, We would then go back to bass fishing until dusk.

The one thing I learned our first year was that the Rapala Classic Fillet knife was a very good knife BUT when you are cleaning multiple fish after you have been on the water from dawn to dusk you get tired quickly. That is when I discovered and still use today the;

Mister Twister Electric Fisherman Fillet Knife


This electric fillet knife speeds up the process and is an awesome fillet knife for under $25.00


You can become a fish-filleting expert with the Mister Twister® Electric Fisherman knife. The extra sharp blade for fast, easy filleting and the quick and convenient blade release take the work out of filleting. Features a safety lock and lightweight, comfortable handle designed for better control. Heavy-duty motor increases motor life. High impact motor housing offers additional protection. And the power cord is expandable so that it stays out of your way. The split stainless steel blade oscillates at just the right speed to slice perfect fillets. It’s great for other carving jobs, too. 110V AC. 7″ blades.

  • Convenient blade release
  • Safety lock
  • Heavy-duty motor

If you are interested in filming your outdoor experiences check out my blog post on outdoor cameras.

In Conclusion

All fillet knives are not created equal. This is a small list of choices that Acirema Outdoors recommends, if you don’t see something you like you can click here to see the full line up. As always I appreciate you reading and supporting Acirema Outdoors webpage.


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