How To Sharpen A Serrated Knife

A serrated knife is a type of knife with a scalloped toothlike edge contrary to your normal kitchen knife. Its appearance is like that of a saw and is mostly used when cutting foods with a hard outer part and softer on the inside like bread.

It first catches the surface, then rips it, then smoothly slides into the inside. For foods such as a tomato that gets crushed when slicing them, the serrated knife cuts through them cleanly, giving you beautiful pieces of tomato to garnish your food with.

What To Know About Serrated Knives

Fun fact, your serrated knife can actually go years without being sharpened, but so would a chefs knife. They have a design that helps them carry on cutting through crusty bread and tomatoes without smooshing them.

They still work when dull since their slicing ability is not fully reliant on their sharpness. The serrated knife will go for so long without being honed especially if you are using it for cutting your bread.

Many people choose to buy inexpensive knives so that when they get dull, they throw 5them away, but we dont do that here. Recycling and reusing is the order of the day. Buy a quality serrated knife made of high carbon steel, which is worth your money.

You will not only not have to throw it away, but it will give you the benefit of good edge retention and less sharpening. Many people prefer to take them to a professional for sharpening because it is not your usual smooth knife.

There are different methods of sharpening a serrated knife that we will look at below:

Ceramic Sharpening Rod

One of the most difficult techniques to use and time-consuming. The good thing about this sharpening tool is that it is cheap and gives the best results, especially if your knife hasnt been horned in a while. The ceramic rod is harder than the steel and is the best for sharpening the scallops.

  1. Hold the knifes tip way from your body and lay the ceramic rod in each scallop. Try matching the angle of the serrated side well.
  2. Lightly and gently pull the rod back and forth in both directions, slowly drawing the rod away from the blade to avoid hurting yourself with the knifes sharp edge side.
  3. Repeat the above for each serration and stick with it. This is the most time-consuming part.
  4. Pass both sides of the knife blade over a leather strop after sharpening to polish it further and also to remove any fine burrs that may have been left.

Electric Serrated Knife Sharpener

An electric knife sharpener is one of the best choices to use. If you are using it for kitchen knives alone, then it will serve you. There are also different types of electric sharpeners you can get in the market like the chefs choice knife sharpener model 120 and the work sharp knife and tool sharpener.

Chefs Choice Knife Sharpener Model 120

ChefsChoice Trizor 15XV Professional Electric Knife Sharpener for Kitchen Knives with Diamond Abrasives and Precision Angle Guides, 75db, 3 Slots, Gray
  • 3-Stage Kitchen Knife Sharpener: Stages 1 and 2 of the EdgeSelect knife sharpening system use 100% diamond abrasives to sharpen and hone edges; Stage 3 uses patented stropping disks to polish and finish the blade
  • Diamond Abrasives: This versatile straight-edge and serrated knife sharpener uses proprietary diamond abrasives, the hardest natural substance on earth, to quickly and easily sharpen edges; Operates at 65dB to 75dB
  • 15-Degree Edges: This electric sharpener applies an ultra-sharp edge to 15-degree knives and easily converts 20-degree knives to a finer 15-degree edge for easier cutting
  • Full Length Edge: Flexible spring guides hold the blade at the ideal angle during use, resulting in longer-lasting, arch-shaped edges down the full length of the blade
  • Easy To Use: Knife sharpener comes equipped with a simple on/off switch; First time sharpening requires approximately 1 minute; Resharpening takes approximately 10 seconds

This is a diamond hone 3-stage knife sharpener that most professionals use. The stages use 100% abrasives to help get that sharpness. Each stage relies on a 20-degree angle guide for that precise sharpening.

  • Make sure the sharpener is firm and stable on the table before starting.
  • Switch the unit on and use the third stage to sharpen the knife pulling it on each side against the angle guide and repeat.
  • The first and second stages are not used because they may damage the serrations unless you want it to become a straight-edge knife.

The chefs choice sharpener does a pretty decent job to realign, reshape, and polish the serrations. Many who use it sometimes complain that it grinds the teeth out, turning the knife into a straight edge knife to be used when necessary.

Work Sharp Knife And Tool Sharpener

Now this one is not just a serrated knife sharpener like a kitchen tool. It is a multipurpose tool that can even be used in the garage. 

  • Use the finest belt only to polish the blade and be cautious of the coarsest belt, which may grind away more steel than you need.
  • Place it on the counter to make sure it is stable.
  • Place the knifes flat side against the belt at about 10 degrees and then pull the trigger to run the motor.
  • Now pull the knife across the belt slowly and firmly, about five strokes but know that the knifes flat side is what will be sharpened and not the serrations.

Sharpening A Serrated Knife With A Dremel

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  • Slim and ergonomic body - 360-degree grip zone for added comfort and grip during extended use
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Dremel is a handheld rotary tool that uses various attachments and accessories. It can be used on wood, metal, glass, plastic, and other materials. For the Dremel, you will need a vice and some Dremel bits, which are:

  1. Part no.932 which is an aluminum grinding stone
  2. Part no. 401 - Mandrel
  • Put the Aluminum Oxide in then put the knife in the vice.
  • Start the Dremel up and grind away at a 10-degree angle. Turn it over and grind the other side too.

In conclusion, the chiefs choice and the work sharp is the most recommended as the best electric sharpeners and will make your job easier. Ditch the throwing away of serrated knives when they become dull and invest in quality serrated knives, whether for your garage work or in the kitchen. The advantages of serrated knives are:

  • The sawtooth edge requires little pressure to cut down all textured materials like bread and rough skin vegetables. It slices like a saw and cuts through the food.
  • It offers a better grip because of the serrations on smooth textures avoiding slips when force is used.