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Best Oyster Knife

Updated: Nov 13, 2023 6:25 AM
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The best oyster knives make it easy to shuck the toughest of oyster shells. Choosing the wrong one could mean the difference between anxious dinner guests and full stomachs. Our evaluation focused on the blade, handle design, safety, and materials. We also looked into auxiliary features such as sheaths and protective gloves. If you’re an oyster lover then a great oyster knife is a must-have kitchen products for your home.

After more than 18 hours of research, our top pick goes to the HiCoup Oyster Knife. This oyster knife is an absolute dynamo, featuring an ergonomic pakkawood handle, 2.5-inch stainless steel blade, and a full tang construction to perform magic on all types of oyster shells. Keep reading to learn about the HiCoup Oyster Knife and five others that met our strict grading criteria.

Top 6 Best Oyster Knife Reviews

 #1  Oyster Knife By HiCoup

Award: Top Pick

WHY WE LIKE IT: This oyster knife comes with a carbon 2.5-inch stainless steel blade and a curved pakkawood handle. It is a great choice for shucking smaller oysters.

  • Best quality
  • Very lightweight
  • Includes gorgeous leather sheath
  • Not the most comfortable handle
  • Thick tip
  • Does not fit standard sheaths

Thanks to this oyster knife’s full tang construction and triple-riveted handle, it is super durable for ripping through oyster shells. It quickly unlatches shells while keeping liquid contained within, helping oysters preserve their test. We also enjoyed the fact it is very easy to clean.

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We love this oyster knife’s stylish pakkawood handle, which really allows for a tight grip while opening oysters. A curved hand guard and skid-free handle also prevent palms from catching the blade. Included is a gorgeous leather sheath for easy safeguarding and a snug fit. They make it as safe as possible and hey, what else are you going to do, cook them in the best slow cooker until they open?

 #2  OXO 35681 Good Grips Oyster Knife

Award: Honorable Mention

WHY WE LIKE IT: This oyster knife features a bent tip and a soft, rubber ergo-handle. It works best for people who prefer a softer handle for prying lots of oysters in one sitting.

  • Best budget
  • Easy to use
  • Soft, grippable handle
  • No handguard
  • Blade may be too short for some people
  • Rubber handle could become slippery

While researching, this oyster knife’s bent tip really blitzes through multiple oyster shells within a few minutes. It also worked well with tougher oyster shells, helped by a non-slip grip, even with wet hands. Its stainless steel blade is very durable.

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Though this OXO Good Grips oyster knife is easy to maneuver, we wished it included a handguard like our #1 pick HiCoup Oyster Knife or our #5 pick Rockland Guard Oyster Shucking Set with its mesh gloves. Bonus points for its dishwasher-safe construction, which will not break or fade in the wash. Speaking of dishwasher safe, the best stainless steel cookware is another must for your kitchen.

 #3  Victorinox Oyster Knife

Award: Best for Small Oysters

WHY WE LIKE IT: This oyster knife is the best Victorinox oyster knife, featuring a 2 ¾-inch hooked tip and an ergonomically curved, non-slip handle. It works great if your hands frequently get wet while shucking.

  • Excellent grip
  • Great with wet hands
  • NSF approved for commercial kitchen use
  • So-so knife durability
  • Not as strong on tough oysters
  • No hard guard

We enjoyed this oyster knife’s ergonomic design, consisting of a curved rubber handle with a narrow middle for a good palm and thumb grip. Its 4-inch, high carbon stainless steel blade also shucks well, known for being more durable and rust-resistant than standard stainless steel. Though it is easy to shuck with, we would have preferred to see a handguard to prevent nicks and cuts. It does have a nice grip handle that doesn’t slip even when it’s wet.

This oyster knife comes with a thin blade tip, making it ideal for hinges of all sizes. It is also suitable for side-entry, a nice alternative to prying oysters open from the bottom. At no point did we feel uncomfortable using the knife, even after tackling some pretty difficult oyster shells in quick succession. They are ready in no time, whether you cook them up in the best non stick pan or eat them raw.

 #4  Dexter-Russell New Haven Style Oyster Knife

Award: Best Grip

WHY WE LIKE IT: This is the best Dexter Russell oyster knife, featuring a two 3/4-inch bent tip blade. It is a great choice for people that need a little extra help separating oyster hinges.

  • Comfortable handle
  • Bent tip blade
  • Fast shucking
  • Not dishwasher safeBlade may be too short for some people
  • Thicker than average blade

We appreciate this oyster knife’s Dexsteel blade, which is very rigid and durable. It’s a 2.75 inch high carbon steel blade that’s attached to an ergonomic handle. While researching, cutting through multiple oysters was a breeze. Though it cut large oysters well, its two 3/4-inch blade is a bit too thick for smaller oysters. A bent tip could have been helpful.

Thanks to this oyster shuckers contoured sani-safe handle, it is very easy to grip. A narrow middle makes it easy to maneuver your palm and thumbs. It should fare well in commercial kitchens where dozens of oysters are opened daily. While cooking oysters isn’t as easy as using the best air fryer to make fries, at least opening them is a breeze.

 #5  Rockland Guard Oyster Shucking Set Knife

Award: Safest

WHY WE LIKE IT: This is the best oyster knife and glove combo, featuring a 3.5-inch knife and a pair of cut-resistant gloves. It is a good choice for those fearful of cutting themselves while shucking.

  • Includes cut resistant gloves
  • Shucks smaller oysters well
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Glove fingers a bit long
  • Bulky knife tip
  • May rust if not used properly

We like this shucking set’s oyster knife, which offers a non-slip handle and a rigid tip that pops into hinges easily without spilling liquid while opening oysters. Detaching the adductor muscle off oyster shells is comfortable. Bonus points for being dishwasher safe, unlike our #4 pick Dexter Russell oyster knife, which needs to be hand washed.

Instead of a finger guard, this knife comes with oyster gloves that carry the highest Level 5 cut resistance rating, a performance standard set by ANSI/ISEA. This distinction really makes us confident our hands won’t get cut. We feel it is important to always have the safest and best kitchen gadgets, like this and like the best coffee maker.

 #6  Melocean Oyster Shucking Knife Set of 2

Award: Best for Beginners

WHY WE LIKE IT: This oyster shucking knife set comes with two knives and a PDF guide on how to use it. It makes a great gift for people unfamiliar with oysters and oyster shucking.

  • Includes two shucking knives
  • Beginner’s guide included
  • Lifetime warranty & full tang for durability
  • Not the most durable
  • Flimsy handle

We like these shucking knives non-slip wooden handles, which have a grainy and elegant appearance. Its 3cr13 stainless steel blades do a great job with light shucking. However, they are not as durable with tougher oysters.

This gift shucking set includes a PDF oyster open guide with detailed information on how to shuck oysters. This wooden handle pair also comes with a decorative wooden box, making it a great gift for beginners. This set is similar to the R Murphy/Ramelson Duxbury Oyster Knife, and is not recommended for commercial kitchens where dozens of oysters are shucked daily. This isn’t for those of us who have a tough time with the best toaster oven. It’s for the pros.

How We Decided

In determining the best oyster knife to buy, we explored the blade handle design, hard guards, and tip style of the 10 best oyster shuckers.

We recommend stainless steel blades at least 3 inches long with a bent tip to better sneak into tough hinges to pry them open. Bonus points if the blade is made of high carbon steel, which is stronger and lasts longer than regular stainless steel.

Your oyster blade handle design should work seamlessly with your fingers and palm grip to pry open oysters with ease. We like the Rockland Guard’s non-slip handle and the Victorinox’s curved handle with narrow middle, which is comfortable to hold. Handguards should also be considered for people with wet hands. Alternately, you may use mesh gloves with the highest Level 5 cut resistance rating, which guarantees no nicks or cuts when shucking.

Oyster Knife Buying Guide

The Most Important Features to Consider

  1. Handle
    Look for contoured, non-slip handles, preferably with narrower middles that make it easy to hold. This is especially important when your hands are wet. Some of our picks even carry handguards, which prevents the blade from nicking or cutting the palms and fingers.
  2. Blade
    Blades should be at least 3 inches long with a bent or rounded tip to pry open oysters from hinges and cut the abductor muscle easily. Our favorite blades are made of high carbon steel, which lasts longer and is harder than traditional stainless steel or cheap alloy blades.
  3. Handguard
    Handguards offer protection against cuts and nicks. They could form a bulge at the handle to prevent the palms from grazing the blade or come as mesh gloves with the highest Level 5 cut resistance rating for cut-free shucking.
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