6 Clever Uses for Kitchen Shears

Tips from The Kitchn

I've come to use my kitchen shears on a more regular basis. In early days, I only really used them to cut open packages, but now I reach for them daily for all kinds of prep and cooking tasks. Here are six ways to use them around the kitchen so they get as much use as your regular knives!

1. Sectioning Grapes

When serving grapes at a party, or even if you're just prepping them to snack on at home, use your kitchen shears to cut a big bunch of grapes down into smaller single-serving clusters. No more awkwardly pulling at the whole bunch just to snack on a few grapes!

2. Chopping Canned Tomatoes

Instead of transferring juicy canned whole tomatoes onto a cutting board or dumping them into a blender or food processor to chop them up, just use your kitchen scissors to cut them right in the can! No muss, no fuss.

3. Snipping and Chopping Fresh Herbs

We all know that gardening shears are the best tools for snipping fresh herbs off the plant, but did you know you can use kitchen shears instead of a knife to chop them up? Just throw the herbs in a glass or jar and snip away until minced or chopped up to your desired consistency. Plus, the chopped herbs are already in a container and ready to be used in your cooking!

4. Spatchcocking a Turkey or Chicken

Spatchcocking, a fancy way of butterflying whole poultry so that it sits flat in one piece, is a technique best done not with a knife but with kitchen shears! Kitchen shears cut through rib cages and around backbones easily, with a lot of dexterity — not to mention, they're safer to use on a slippery chicken than a big chef's knife.

5. Peeling Shrimp

An easy way to peel shrimp is to use kitchen scissors to cut through the shell along the length of the shrimp. Doing it this way makes it easy to remove the shrimp meat from the shell in one easy motion.

6. Cutting Pizza

When the pizzas were delivered to our table recently at an Italian restaurant, I was surprised that they arrived uncut. The server placed a pair of scissors on our table and told us we could cut the pizzas ourselves. I loved that idea, since scissors actually cut through the crisp crust and molten cheese cleanly and easily — no hacking back and forth with a big knife.

What do you use your kitchen shears for?

(Image credits: Christine Gallary; Leela Cyd; Faith Durand; Kimberley Hasselbrink)