What are Some Ways of Sharpening a Knife Without a Stone?

What are some ways of sharpening a knife without a stone?

A sharp knife is a safe knife. Perhaps that is why the best commercial and household kitchens worldwide have the sharpest knives that easily cut through carrots or peel off a slice of tomatoes effortlessly.

A dull blade in your kitchen sets you up for injuries because it requires increased pressure to cut through sometimes, making it vulnerable to slipping from your hands.

Moreover, a blunt knife hardly makes your job easier, particularly when you require vegetables, meat, fruits, and other food items into perfectly cut parts. Therefore, it’s essential to sharpen your blade regularly.

Although you can sharpen your blades with a sharpening stone, sharpening a knife without a stone is an effective way of achieving the razor sharpness required for your kitchen work. Some ways of doing this are using another knife, sandpaper, broken glass bottle, slates, and even coffee mugs.

It is also helpful to know that all sharpening stones are whetstones. These are different types, like oil, Arkansas, water, and diamond. However, they wear down pretty soon and require frequent replacement in most cases.

However, what are the alternative sharpening methods, and in which ways are they helpful? Read on to know.

Sharpening steel

It is known by various names like whet steel, sharpening rod, butcher’s steel, and honing steel. This tool serves two primary purposes: smoothing out the rough edges of a blade and recovering a knife’s edge that has been dulled out by repetitive cutting, chopping, slicing, and other functions.

You should consider using this tool to sharpen your knife every two weeks to avoid losing the necessary edge and sharpness. The three materials that it’s made from are ceramic, diamond-coated, and honing.


These refer to sheets of paper or cloth containing a coat of sand or other abrasive material. Sandpaper’s efficiency in sharpening an object, including a knife, is measured by its grit number, and a higher grit ensures a better sanding process.

A grit of 800, 1000, and 2000 works best for sharpening your knife, while 200 to 400 works best for blunt knives with nicks on their bodies. Wet sandpaper works better than a dry one for dull blades, preventing them from getting too hot and damaging their temper during sharpening.

Coffee mug

A coffee mug wouldn’t be the first thing that crosses your mind when you think about sharpening your kitchen knives. But they can and with excellent results. Coffee mugs have a flat unglazed (not coated with a finish) ring at the bottom, which is rough compared to the rest of their body.

To sharpen your knife, hold the mug at an angle of 15 to 20 degrees, applying five to ten strokes on each side. You will notice results in about 30 seconds or less. However, before proceeding, ensure the cup is stable, the applied motion is smooth, and the blade faces away from your body.


These are effective for bringing that sharpness desirable in a knife. Slates are metamorphic rocks consisting of chlorite, quartz, and mica. In terms of efficiency and results, it resembles a sharpening stone.

Before using the slate, ensure you have wetted its surface with water. Then hold it gently, and run your knife backward and forwards, taking care to avoid using excessive pressure.

These are some ways of sharpening a knife without a stone. But before using any of these objects, you must observe the necessary safety precautions and smooth movements to get the best results.

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