Cutting Techniques for Professional Chefs Using Kitchen Shears

Are you a professional chef looking to up your cutting game? Look no further! In this article, we'll show you some handy techniques using kitchen shears that will make your life in the kitchen a breeze.

From trimming herbs to breaking down poultry, we've got you covered. Say goodbye to tedious chopping and hello to efficient snipping. Get ready to elevate your culinary skills with these cutting techniques.

Let's dive in!

Trimming Herbs

When trimming herbs, it's important to use kitchen shears in order to achieve precise cuts and maintain the herb's flavor and aroma. Proper technique is crucial to ensure that the herbs are trimmed correctly without causing any damage. To begin, gather the necessary equipment: a pair of sharp kitchen shears and a cutting board. Make sure the shears are clean and sanitized before use.

To trim the herbs, start by holding the stems firmly with one hand and using the shears to snip off the leaves or sprigs. It's important to cut close to the base of the stem to avoid wasting any usable parts. For leafy herbs like basil or parsley, you can strip the leaves off the stem by running your fingers along the stem in the opposite direction of growth. This technique helps to separate the leaves easily.

When trimming delicate herbs like dill or cilantro, be gentle to prevent bruising or tearing. Hold the stem near the top and use the shears to remove the leaves or sprigs. Always trim the herbs just before using them to ensure maximum freshness and flavor.

Breaking Down Poultry

To break down poultry, we use kitchen shears to easily and efficiently separate the different parts of the bird. Here are three key techniques that can elevate your poultry dishes:

  1. Roasting techniques: Breaking down poultry allows for even cooking and enhances the flavor and juiciness of the meat. By separating the bird into individual parts such as legs, breasts, and wings, you can apply different roasting techniques to each piece. For example, you can roast the breasts at a higher temperature for a shorter time to achieve a crispy skin, while slow-roasting the legs to ensure tender and succulent meat.
  2. Marinating methods: Breaking down poultry also provides the opportunity to marinate each part separately. This allows the flavors to penetrate the meat more effectively, resulting in a more flavorful and tender end product. You can marinate the breasts with herbs and spices, while marinating the legs in a tangy or spicy sauce. This technique provides versatility and allows you to customize the flavors of each part according to your taste preferences.
  3. Cooking time optimization: Breaking down poultry not only helps with even cooking and flavor enhancement but also allows you to optimize cooking times. Smaller pieces, such as wings and drumsticks, cook faster than larger pieces like the breast. By separating the bird into different parts, you can cook each piece to its ideal doneness without overcooking or undercooking any part.

Removing Fish Scales

We use kitchen shears to efficiently remove fish scales, employing a precise and effective technique. Fish cleaning is an essential step in seafood preparation, ensuring that the fish is ready for cooking or further processing.

To remove fish scales using kitchen shears, start by holding the fish firmly with one hand and grasping the shears with the other. Position the shears at the base of the tail and gently scrape the scales off, moving towards the head. Apply consistent pressure to ensure that all scales are removed. Be careful not to press too hard, as this may damage the flesh of the fish.

Repeat this process on both sides of the fish until all scales are removed. Once the scales are removed, rinse the fish under cold water to remove any loose scales or debris.

This technique allows for a quick and efficient removal of fish scales, saving time and effort in the kitchen.

Deveining Shrimp

Deveining shrimp is a crucial step in seafood preparation, ensuring the removal of the shrimp's digestive tract. Here are three reasons why you should never skip this important task:

  1. Alternative methods: While some chefs prefer using a knife to devein shrimp, kitchen shears offer a quicker and more efficient way to get the job done. With their sharp, curved blades, shears allow you to easily cut along the back of the shrimp and remove the vein in one swift motion. This saves time and effort, allowing you to focus on other aspects of your dish.
  2. Health benefits: The dark vein running along the back of a shrimp is actually its digestive tract. By removing it, you eliminate any potential grit or contaminants that may be present. This not only improves the texture and taste of the shrimp but also ensures that it's safe to consume. Deveined shrimp are cleaner and healthier, making them a better choice for both professional chefs and home cooks.
  3. Aesthetics: Deveining shrimp not only enhances the flavor and cleanliness of the dish but also improves its presentation. Removing the dark vein creates a more visually appealing appearance, allowing the vibrant colors of the shrimp to shine through. Whether you're serving shrimp as a main course or incorporating it into a salad or pasta dish, deveining ensures that your final creation looks as good as it tastes.

Snipping Fresh Pasta

When snipping fresh pasta, we can achieve precise cuts by using kitchen shears with a double preposition to guide our movements. The sharp blades of the shears allow us to easily snip through the delicate strands of pasta, ensuring clean and even cuts every time. To begin, we hold the pasta firmly with one hand and position the shears perpendicular to the pasta. With a gentle squeezing motion, we snip the pasta at the desired length, using the preposition of the shears to guide our cutting motion.

Snipping fresh pasta is similar to snipping fresh herbs or cutting flowers, as all three require a careful and precise touch. Just as we'd delicately snip the leaves of herbs or trim the stems of flowers, we must handle fresh pasta with the same level of care. By using kitchen shears, we can maintain control and avoid crushing or tearing the pasta strands. This ensures that our pasta dishes not only taste delicious, but also look visually appealing.

Chopping Vegetables

When it comes to chopping vegetables, there are a few key points to keep in mind.

Firstly, the choice between using a knife or kitchen shears depends on personal preference and the type of vegetable being chopped.

Secondly, using shears can provide both speed and precision, making it a great option for professional chefs.

Lastly, beginners should always prioritize safety by ensuring a firm grip on the shears and keeping their fingers away from the cutting blades.

Knife Vs Shears

We prefer using kitchen shears over a knife for chopping vegetables. Here are three reasons:

  • Precision: Shears allow for more control and precision when cutting through vegetables. Their sharp blades make it easier to achieve the desired shape and size, resulting in more uniform cuts.
  • Efficiency: Using shears saves time and effort. With a simple snip, you can quickly chop vegetables without the need for repetitive knife skills. This is especially useful when dealing with leafy greens or herbs.
  • Versatility: Shears aren't limited to chopping. They can also be used for trimming, snipping, and even opening packaging. This versatility makes them a handy tool in the kitchen.

Speed and Precision

To further emphasize the advantages of using kitchen shears, we can achieve both speed and precision when chopping vegetables. By employing efficient and accurate techniques, we can save valuable time in the kitchen. One such technique is the use of kitchen shears to quickly and accurately chop vegetables into desired sizes.

Here is a table showcasing some time-saving techniques using kitchen shears:

Technique Description
Fine Chopping Hold the shears parallel to the cutting board and make quick, precise cuts to finely chop vegetables.
Julienne Cut Hold the shears at a slight angle and cut thin, uniform strips for a professional presentation.
Brunoise Cut Cut vegetables into small, uniform cubes by making several parallel cuts and then cross-cutting them.
Chiffonade Cut Stack leafy vegetables, roll them tightly, and make thin, ribbon-like cuts using the shears.
Mincing Hold the shears close to the cutting board and make swift, repetitive cuts to finely mince vegetables.

With these time-saving techniques, kitchen shears offer a precise and efficient way to chop vegetables, allowing professional chefs to work quickly and effortlessly in the kitchen.

Safety Tips for Beginners

Let's now explore some essential safety tips for beginners when chopping vegetables using kitchen shears.

  1. Avoid beginner mistakes: As beginners, it's important to be aware of common mistakes that can lead to accidents. Avoid chopping with kitchen shears in a haphazard manner or using them for tasks they aren't designed for, such as cutting through bones.
  2. Maintain a proper grip: To ensure safety while chopping vegetables, it's crucial to have a proper grip on the kitchen shears. Hold them firmly but not too tightly, with your thumb and middle finger inside the handles and your index finger on the outside. This grip will give you better control and reduce the risk of slippage.
  3. Pay attention to your fingers: Always keep your fingers away from the cutting edge of the kitchen shears. Position them in a way that they're clear of the blades to avoid any accidental cuts. It's a good practice to curl your fingertips inward while using the shears to protect them.

Cutting Pizza and Flatbreads

Our favorite technique for cutting pizza and flatbreads is to hold the kitchen shears at a slight angle and slice through the crust with a swift, confident motion. When it comes to crust cutting techniques, using kitchen shears provides a clean and precise cut without squishing or tearing the dough. The sharp blades of the shears effortlessly glide through the crust, ensuring that each slice is neatly separated.

To achieve even slices, it's important to maintain a steady hand and apply consistent pressure while cutting. Start by positioning the shears at the edge of the pizza or flatbread, and gradually work your way towards the center. This technique allows for equal distribution of toppings and prevents any uneven portions.

Another tip to ensure even slices is to rotate the pizza or flatbread as you cut. By rotating the dish, you can adjust the angle of the shears and cut through the crust more effectively. This technique also helps in maintaining a straight line while cutting, resulting in visually appealing slices.

Remember to wipe the shears clean after each cut to prevent any toppings from sticking and affecting the next slice. By following these crust cutting techniques and striving for precision, you can effortlessly create perfectly portioned slices of pizza or flatbread using kitchen shears.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can Kitchen Shears Be Used to Trim Other Types of Meat, Such as Beef or Lamb?

Yes, kitchen shears can be used to trim beef and lamb. They are versatile tools that make trimming easier and more precise. With sharp blades and a strong grip, they are perfect for cutting through different types of meat.

What Are Some Tips for Maintaining the Sharpness of Kitchen Shears?

Here are some tips for maintaining the sharpness of our kitchen shears: regularly clean and dry them, store them in a safe place, and use proper cutting technique when trimming herbs and vegetables.

Can Kitchen Shears Be Used to Cut Through Bones?

Yes, kitchen shears can be used to cut through poultry bones. Using kitchen shears for bone cutting offers several benefits, such as more control and precision compared to using a knife.

Are There Any Safety Precautions to Keep in Mind When Using Kitchen Shears?

Safety precautions and proper handling are essential when using kitchen shears. We need to be aware of potential hazards and ensure we have a firm grip on the shears to prevent accidents.

Can Kitchen Shears Be Used to Open Packaging or Cut Through Other Non-Food Items?

Yes, kitchen shears can be used to open packaging or cut through non-food items. The pros include convenience and versatility. However, there are cons such as potential damage to the shears. Alternative tools like utility knives may be better for non-food cutting tasks.


In conclusion, kitchen shears are a versatile tool that professional chefs can utilize for various cutting techniques.

From trimming herbs to breaking down poultry, removing fish scales, deveining shrimp, snipping fresh pasta, chopping vegetables, and cutting pizza and flatbreads, kitchen shears offer efficiency and precision in the kitchen.

By incorporating these techniques into their culinary repertoire, chefs can enhance their skills and deliver exceptional dishes to their customers.