How to Sharpen a Meat Cleaver? [5 Proven Ways]


The effective way of sharpening a meat chopper depends on the way it is done. The meat choppers are specifically dissimilar as it comes in varied styles and structure. Hence, the method to sharpen the knives also differs.

A meat knife usually includes a simple bevel and a heavy knife edge. It is manufactured in a strong style for which the blade doesn’t need extreme honing, unlike standard blades.

In the following part of the article, we will focus on how to sharpen a meat cleaver briefly. Keep Reading.

How to Sharpen a Meat Cleaver?

A knife’s sharpness is a must to do the cutting appropriately, even for a little cutting. Otherwise, a narrow edge will turn over and thus will ruin all your chopping. Especially in a meat cleaver, it is impossible to cut your meat correctly without a good sharpness.

Piercing a cleaver is the method of making a knife sharper using some techniques. All the sharping methods also require some angles to follow. The suggested angle to sharpen a meat cleaver is generally within a 30 to 35-degree angle.

There are various techniques through which you can sharpen your meat cleavers. The best method to sharpen yours depends on the type of your knife style, how you need it, and how you can do it. 

The process to sharpen your meat cleaver is written below:

Process 1: Sharpening Using Grit Japanese Whetstone

The Grit Japanese Whetstone is one of the common ways to sharpen your meat cleaver.  It is perfect for sharpening marginal used or old blades.

They are available in different grit sizes. The size number of the grit is marked on the rubstone. The better quality the grit will be, the better your blade will be sharpened.

The grit Japanese Whetstone is a steel rubstone used to sharpen the cleaver by rubbing with the stone. To sharpen your meat cleaver using a Japanese Whetstone, you can follow the below process:

  • At first, you need to hone your chopper from start to end at a small inclination.
  • You need to repeat the same process for the other side of the cleaver so that both sides are sharped equally.
  • Then, clean the cleaver before using it.
  • Finally, clean the whetstone to eliminate the steel elements from the cleaver for using it next time.

Although this method seems easy to do, it requires much practice to do this process correctly. So, you must be cautious while doing this.

Process 2: Sharpening Using Stone

You can also sharpen your meat cleaver using stone. The timeworn dull cleavers are mostly sharped using a stone.

As, over time, the sharpness of a cleaver gets dull with or without regular use. So, it needs to sharpen properly for using it again.

One of the most used processes to sharpen an old cleaver is to do it on a rough stone. The process is written below:

  • You can hone your knife at 22.5 inclination unless your blade is weighty.
  • Continue to hone your knife again until the bevels of the knife are leveled according to your contentment,
  • But, this time, you must sharpen at around a 30-degree angle. A 30-degree angle chopping edge is enough to endure continuous usage.
  • The knife edge must also not be very wide to avoid its jamming possibilities instead of getting sharped.

It is needed to sharpen your knives on both sides equally to get an equal thickness. It may be helpful to increase the strength and duration of your blade.

Process 3: Sharpening Using Electric Grinding

This technique doesn’t require practice to learn, which could be an excellent benefit for culinary people. This machine has one or more spaces with varied kinds of piercing rolls.

The angle is also fixed in this machine. It is pretty easy to use this technique, and it also gives a sharpness to the cleaver. But, it decreases your meat cleaver duration, which is one of the cons of this process. This process applies to a heavy knife only.

So, if your knife is weighty, you can follow the usage of an electric crushing stone to a knife-edge and sharpen your meat knife. Both sides of the meat cleaver need to be equally sharped to get an even sharp. And thus, continue doing this process until it becomes pointed according to your need. This process can also be followed by a traditional weight knife.

Process 4: Sharpening Using Clamp

The western meat cleaver is usually sharped using a clamp. This type of cleaver has a heavy knife edge, which is not very piercing. It is created for rough usage mainly, such as; cutting the meat and bones. It is not right for well cutting of vegetables.

The sharp edge of this type of chopper doesn’t need to be predominantly piercing. So, it can be sharped normally and doesn’t need much work to be sharped, unlike other choppers.

It is not a knife-edge that you will like to make piercing as a blade’s edge. To make your knife sharp using this technique, you need to follow the below procedures:

  • Firstly, You must put the edge of your chopper in the clamp.
  • Secondly, it needs to be placed in such a way that it nearly touched the 1st nail.
  • Thirdly, you need to choose the medium hone, which must be used at a 30-degree angle.
  • Fourthly, it needs to move the hone in the clamp’s direction. It will be in a marginal movement state 5 times in a line.
  • Finally, go for another 5 times in a line on the opposite side. Carry on doing these until your preferred piercing is achieved.

Process 5: Sharpening Using Belt Sander

It requires two changed sides of the knife to sharpen the meat knife on a belt sander. Otherwise, both sides will not have the same sharpness. Making the two sides even helps the blade to increase its duration and also cut better.

  • The 1st phase is to hold the knife edge vertical to the belt.
  • And the 2nd phase is angling it at a 20 to 25-degree angle.
  • The angling helps to increase the plane section of the edge while rubbing through the belt sander.
  • Hence, it makes the cleaver more stable and piercing.

Therefore, these are the ways you can sharpen meat cleavers depending on your knife’s style.


You can try any one of the above-stated techniques to sharpen your meat cleaver. It must be selected with your knife’s style and must be done correctly to get a better result.

I hope this article has helped you to know how to sharpen a meat cleaver. So that you wouldn’t have any difficulty sharpening your meat cleaver.