Gyuto and Deba are two top-rated Japanese knives. These two commanding knives are different in looks, features, and functionalities. One is the chef’s knife of choice, while the other is a speciality butcher’s knife.

This article aims to give you a detailed analysis of the knives. The review covers the various features and functionality differences of the blades. We aim to equip you with the correct information before buying. 

Deba knife 

When translated, Deba means beheading or pointed carving knife. Deba is a heavy, robust knife compared to the classic western knife. The most common Deba knife is the Hon-Deba which means true Deba. 

The Deba was designed as a fish knife. Its primary use was beheading and filleting fish bones during sushi preparation. The sharp blade easily cuts through the fish’s bone parts, such as the head. 

Japanese Deba knife

The Deba knife is also useful when preparing meat with small bones, such as poultry, hams, and roasts. But, Deba is not suitable for cutting through hard bones. 


The hon-Deba knives have sharp blades that range from 6 to 13 inches in length and a thickness of 5 to 9mm. For the average user, a knife length of 7 inches is suitable.

You will find the Deba knife in both stainless steel and carbon steel blades. Your choice of blade determines its durability, sharpening ease, and edge retention.

Moreover, the single bevel edges have 10-15 degrees inclination angles. Thus, the knife has razor-sharp edges ideal for cutting fillets.

deba knife

Gyuto Knife 

Also known as the cow blade, the Gyuto is an all-time favourite among knife lovers. The Gyuto takes up the design of the classic chef’s knife and is a versatile all-rounder blade. 

While the Gyuto is light and has a thin blade, its razor-sharp edges quickly take on challenging tasks. But you may want to keep the knife away from bones as they could crack the thin blade or chip the razor-sharp edges.

fujimoto nashiji Gyuto Knife
Gyuto knife

The traditional Gyuto knife specialized in cutting beef, which led to its name. But the contemporary Gyuto is not limited to meats. It performs different functions, such as cutting meat, fish, and vegetables. You can also use the knife in most cutting styles, such as rock-chopping, slicing, and dicing.


Gyuto is a long knife with a blade that varies between 7 to 12 inches. A blade of 10 inches is ideal for the average home user. The Gyuto knife blades are flat at the heel, ideal for thrust cutting and chopping. A gentle curve starts from the midsection and culminates at the pointed tip. The slight curve prevents the knife from rocking on the surface.

While buying a Gyuto knife, you can choose between a carbon steel blade and a stainless steel blade. The carbon blades are easier to sharpen and stay sharp for extended periods. But you will need to invest in maintenance because they are prone to rust and corrosion. 

The stainless steel blades are less expensive and more corrosion-resistant. But the metal becomes dull fast and requires constant sharpening. Gyuto is a razor-sharp knife with a double-beveled edge. The blade is easy to use for both right and left-handed people. 

The knives are available in Western-style handles and Japanese-style handles, the wa-Gyuto. Standard Wa-Gyuto handles are D, Octagon, and Oval shaped. 

Gyuto vs Deba Knife

The Gyuto and Deba knives have different features that support varying tasks. Let us have a quick comparison of the features. 


The Gyuto knife blades are flat at the heel, ideal for thrust cutting and chopping. A gentle curve starts from the midsection and culminates at the pointed tip. The slight curve prevents the knife from rocking on the surface.

On the other hand, the Deba knife is wide at the heel and narrows towards the cutting edge, forming a pointed tip. The spine is vast, with an obtuse angle starting towards the end of the blade. The angle allows you to cut the fish without damaging the knife’s edges.


Precision cuts (tip work)

Gyuto has a low-pointed tip that comes in handy when you want to make precision cuts and work in small spaces. However, the Deba has a high-pointed tip which is most suitable for removing meat from bones.

Best application

The Gyuto is your ideal Chef’s knife. The design of Gyuto is such that every part of the blade performs a different task. You can achieve your precision work and tip work using the sharp point. Also, Gyuto has a flat spine that gives the knife extra stability and balance. 

The belly curve offers the grip for the rock chopping motion when cutting veggies. And the flat part next to the heel is ideal for straight cuts. In a nutshell, the Gyuto replaces any other blade used in the day-to-day activities of the kitchen. 

Also, the razor-sharp edges last for a long time. You do not need to keep sharpening the knife now and then. The feature makes the Gyuto ideal for a busy kitchen with long working hours.

The Deba blade is built to prepare fish meals. The sturdy and broad blade offers you the force you need to cut through the delicate fish bones. Also, the pointed tip comes through when filing bones and shaping fillets. The Deba is sharp enough to perform its duties without destroying fish parts.


The Gyuto knife is double beveled and easy to use. You do not need a high level of expertise to use the knife. But the Deba knife is single beveled, thus hand specific. Also, the Deba requires a medium level of expertise and is not ideal for amateur users. 

Other features

For both Gyuto and Deba knives, you can choose between stainless steel and carbon steel. You can also opt between the western-style handles and the Wa-handles. The prices of the two knives vary depending on the size and material used.

But given that Deba and the Gyuto have entirely different functionalities. Thus, it may be challenging to choose based on the prices. 


We have seen that both Gyuto and Deba knives are task-specific. If you want a versatile general-purpose knife, Gyuto is the right knife. You need a Deba knife if you want a blade that will serve you in fish and soft meat preparations.

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