How to Fillet Crappie Fast

Now that you’ve caught a mess of Crappie, how do you clean them?  The easiest way is to fillet them.  And I prefer to use an electric knife when filleting fish.

The following video will show you the basics on how to fillet  Crappie.

To start with, place the fish with the dorsal fin facing you.  Take your knife and from behind the side fin, cut into the fish at an angle towards the head.  Only cut down until you feel the bone.

At that point, turn your knife and start cutting towards the back of the fish, but not into the bone.  A good rule of thumb is to cut close to the dorsal fin, and keep your knife flat throughout.

When you get to the tail of the Crappie, I don’t like to cut the piece of meat totally off at this point.  Some people prefer to cut the fillet off and peel the skin off on the side.  If you cut the fillet off, you have to hold the fillet down with your fingernails and then start your knife so you can cut the skin away.  To me, this is a real pain in the backside.

But like was shown on the video,  I like to leave it barely hanging on, and then cut the skin off.  This is often easier because the fish can be pretty slippery, and this gives you a little more control.  But it doesn’t matter too much either way.

At that point, trim around the rib cage, and you have your Crappie fillet.

You can also do this with a 4″ or 6″ fillet knife.  If you are going to use a fillet knife, make sure that your blade is sharp.  If you try this with a dull blade, you will not only have a more difficult time filleting your catch, but you will often waste Crappie meat and time.

Congratulations on your catch.  Now go get them filleted and Happy Eating!