When searching for kitchen knives, you’ll come across a dizzying number of sizes, styles, and materials ranging in price from a few dollars to a few hundred dollars. Is there a meaningful difference between knife styles and quality? There is, indeed.
In this situation, a quality knife is essential, yet an expensive knife does not guarantee greater quality, as several of our kitchen knife reviews below demonstrate.
To help you choose blades that will last and make meal prep a breeze, we’ll go through the sorts of knives you need and don’t need, as well as crucial factors to look for, before taking you through our top 15 recommendations for the finest kitchen knives this year.
- What Knives Do I Need?
- What To Look For?
- Top 15: Best Kitchen Knives
- 1. Wusthof Classic 7.5” Heavy Cleaver
- 2. DALSTRONG Chef Knife – Gladiator Series – German HC Steel – 8” (200mm)
- 3. J.A. HENCKELS INTERNATIONAL Classic 8” Chef’s Knife
- 4. Mercer Culinary Renaissance 10” Forged Chef’s Knife
- 5. ZELITE INFINITY Santoku Knife 7”
- 6. Tojiro DP Gyutou – 8.2” (21cm)
- 7. Victorinox Swiss Army 6” Fibrox Pro Boning Knife with Flexible Blade
- 8. DALSTRONG Paring Knife – Gladiator Series Paring Knife – German HC Steel – 3.75”
- 9. Mercer Culinary Genesis 3.5” Forged Paring Knife
- 10. Kyocera Advanced Ceramic Revolution Series 5
- 11. J.A. Henckels International Eversharp 8-Piece Steak Knife Set
- 12. Victorinox Swiss Army 3-Piece Gourmet Cheese Knife Gift Set
- 13. Norpro 139 Grip-EZ Cheese Knife
- 14. Cangshan V2 Series 59533 German Steel Forged Bread Knife, 8”
- 15. Zwilling J.A. Henckels Twin Pro S 7-Piece Knife Set with Block
- Knife Maintenance Tips
- Final Thoughts
- What are the 3 knives that everyone should have?
- What knife does Gordon Ramsay recommend?
- Which kitchen knives stay sharpest longest?
- What is the most used knife by chefs?
- What is the most forbidden knife?
- What knife shape is best for everything?
- What knife does Guy Fieri use?
- What knives do actual chefs use?
- What knives do Michelin star chefs use?
- Is there a knife that never goes dull?
What Knives Do I Need?
Before you go out and spend your hard-earned money on a dozen exquisite, incredibly particular kitchen knives, think about what kind of chef you are.
What important knives will be used often enough in your house to make the purchase worthwhile? Although possessing a block of 18 knives may make you seem to be a professional, if you only use three or four of them, you are wasting money.
It is much preferable to spend more money on a few critical tools rather than a big, low-quality collection.
A vegetarian family, for example, does not need a boning, filleting, or carving knife, and a basic home cook may usually get by with only two or three decent quality knives.
Don’t feel obligated to purchase all of your knives from the same manufacturer. Unless you are really particular about having matching cutlery, there is no harm in mixing and matching the knives that feel most comfortable to you.
What To Look For?
When it comes to kitchen knives, there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all solution. Your closest friend’s favorite brand may seem weird and cumbersome to you, and vice versa.
For the time being, forget about brand names and technical specifics and go to your local cookware or knife store to gain some hands-on experience. If you must, these are some of the top knife brands in the world.
Along with the practical requirements of durability, balance, and sharpness, comfort is an important issue.
The most expensive, sharpest knife in the world will be a chore to use if it makes you feel awkward or uncomfortable.
Following examination of the appropriate kind of knife for your purposes, below are some general considerations to make while purchasing for any knife.
- Scan the blade for any defects, pitting, or other flaws that may signal weakness.
- Handle the knife to determine whether you have enough room below the handle to operate comfortably without scratching your knuckles.
- Balance: It is critical that your knife be properly balanced between the blade and the handle. A well-balanced knife will take less effort on your part. Don’t overlook lateral balance from side to side.
- Weight: Determine if you want a lightweight knife or one with a bit more heaviness. lightweight weight blades are better for accuracy and quickness while cutting lightweight foods, however hefty knives will make your job more difficult.
For heavier meals like nuts, reverse this. There is no such thing as an ideal weight. Again, it all comes down to personal preference.
Basic Anatomy Of A Knife
- Tang: A full tang knife has a metal blade that extends all the way up through the handle, resulting in a well-balanced knife. The partial tang barely extends halfway up the top edge of the handle.
- The shank is the thick section of metal that connects the blade and handle. It strengthens and stabilizes the knife while also shielding your finger from the razor blade. A bolster is not usually seen on Japanese-style knives. One benefit of not having a bolster is that you may simply sharpen the full length of the blade.Bolster
- Heel: The thickest component of the blade of most knives, and it comes in handy for heavier culinary tasks like cutting through a squash.
- Spine: The top, blunt part of the blade.
SEE ALSO: Parts Of A Knife
Theres four key choices here for a quality knife:
- Carbon steel: The most expensive material, carbon steel is stronger but requires more upkeep. It rusts, stains, and discolors readily and must be handled with care. This is not a knife to toss away.
- Stainless steel: The most common kind of knife, this material is rust-proof and stain-resistant, as well as sturdy and readily sharpenable. If your family has a habit of leaving dirty knives in the sink or putting them in the dishwasher, use stainless steel blades that will not rust.
- High-carbon stainless steel is similar to stainless steel but more durable. Carbon steel is less expensive and more resistant to rust.
- Ceramic: A less common material, ceramic is lightweight, very sharp, and keeps an edge for an extended period of time. The disadvantage of this material is that it is fragile and may shatter and break quickly. It also cannot be honed as readily as other materials.
Forged Or Stamped Blade?
- Forged knives: each blade is meticulously formed from a single solid piece of metal using very high heat. The procedure results in a hefty, robust blade that can retain a sharp edge effectively. Because they are of the best quality, they are also the most expensive.
- Stamped knives: this method of production is more akin to cookie cutters, with each blade being carved out of a flat sheet of steel and sharpened. They are less expensive, but the blade is lighter and more pliable, and it does not keep an edge as well.
Handles might be made of wood, plastic, metal, or a combination material. Although wood is attractive, it is not long-lasting and may become deformed. Choose a plastic or composite that is easy to grip and non-slip, even when wet or greasy.
Top 15: Best Kitchen Knives
1. Wusthof Classic 7.5” Heavy Cleaver
There’s nothing like a big Wusthof Classic cleaver to make you feel like a genuine kitchen ruler, and this 1.88-pound Wusthof Classic is a true kitchen workhorse. Fans of heavy-duty knives will like the cleaver’s sturdy, well-balanced feel.
Its high carbon German stainless steel construction makes it great for cutting and breaking through bones, slaughtering poultry, and easily separating ribs. Because of its durability, you may use the cleaver’s size to chop rather than your own muscular force.
Because a tougher material can bend or fracture under severe usage, cleavers are made with a softer steel than other kitchen blades. When sharpening, keep in mind that you may lose a lot of metal from the blade, so go gently.
Most cleavers aren’t known for their sharpness, instead depending on the strength of the cook’s stroke, but the Wusthof features a sharper blade to alleviate some of that strain. The Wusthof is distinguished by its thick blade, which readily cuts through bone.
Although the price is a little high, consider this cleaver to be an investment that will last you for many years. If you’re searching for a heavy-duty cleaver that can cut through huge bones, this is the one to acquire.
2. DALSTRONG Chef Knife – Gladiator Series – German HC Steel – 8” (200mm)
This appealing example is made of high grade German steel and should be stain resistant. The black pakkawood handle looks fantastic and functions even better since it has been laminated to make it stronger and water resistant.
This is a thicker and sturdier knife that is sharp straight out of the box and works well for the price. When you purchase the Dalstrong, you are receiving a high-quality knife at a low price. It’s truly equivalent to a chefs knife that costs twice as much.
Most users find this knife to be exceptionally pleasant to use, with a higher blade height that prevents knuckle scratching and a comforting robustness. If you want a lighter instrument, the Mercer below may be a better choice.
Keep in mind that since this is not stainless steel, it is susceptible to corrosion and rust. If you are not willing to spend a few minutes cleaning, drying, and storing this knife, you might choose the stainless steel J.A. Henckels International Chefs Knife below.
We are delighted with the family-owned Dalstrong brand’s customer service. They really believe in their goods and will answer immediately to any concerns you may have.
Along with the knife’s quality, it’s also arranged elegantly, making it an excellent gift. This is our top selection for a chef’s knife; it’s good quality at a low price and will wow even the most seasoned cook.
3. J.A. HENCKELS INTERNATIONAL Classic 8” Chef’s Knife
This J.A. Henckels chefs knife is fashioned from German stainless steel and is a wonderful option for someone who likes the flexibility to be a little reckless with maintenance.
Sharp from the moment you unbox it, it re-sharpens and remains sharp really well.
Unfortunately, the spine is also razor-sharp! This is a significant omission; if you get carried away with this knife, you may wind up with an unexpected additional cutting edge directly into your fingers. If this is an issue, sand it down to an appropriate level.
Although Henckels produces high-quality knives, the international line is more cost-effective. It’s a lighter knife with a narrower blade that may appeal to certain users.
SEE ALSO: JA Henckels Knife Review
In terms of cheap knives, we believe this chefs knife is rather nice for the price. Ideal for someone on a tight budget who yet wants a higher-quality knife, this can adequately tackle whatever task you throw at it.
4. Mercer Culinary Renaissance 10” Forged Chef’s Knife
Our third chefs knife option is a forged blade composed of high carbon German steel, similar to the Dalstrong.
The Mercer Culinary Renaissance, which is less expensive than the Dalstrong, also features a gently rounded spine for comfort (as opposed to the sharp Henckels spine above) and a shorter bolster, which enables you to sharpen the whole blade quickly.
The weight of this knife falls in between the Dalstrong and Henckels models, being neither too hefty nor too light. It has outstanding balance, exactly like our other two examined chefs knives, but it seems to outperform them in terms of comfort.
It’s difficult to choose between the Mercer and the Dalstrong since both are good quality knives at comparable prices. With its ergonomic handle form, the Mercer may well edge out the competition in terms of comfort. If you can, go into a store and try them both on to determine which one you like.
This Mercer has a more defined curve than our other two knives, which is fantastic if you want to chop using a rocking motion, but others who like straight up and down chopping may find it unpleasant.
5. ZELITE INFINITY Santoku Knife 7”
We’d be remiss if we didn’t start with the obvious physical attraction of this knife before delving into its utilitarian abilities. The Zelite Infinity is just stunning!
That gorgeous tidal rose Damascus design isn’t just for show; it really helps keep food from adhering to the blade.
On the commercial side, it is composed of high carbon stainless steel, which is stain and corrosion resistant. Although Japanese chef knives are often lighter, this one is substantial yet comfortable.
There are some clever touches to improve comfort, such as a contoured handle with a nice grip and a tapered bolster.
In terms of performance, there is nothing to complain about; the blade is razor sharp and sharpens quickly. It’s long and robust enough to do the same chores as a typical chefs knife, but it’s also thin enough for some more delicate operations.
Although it is not inexpensive when compared to normal chefs knives, the Zelite Infinity is much less expensive than other Santoku knives. If you want a knife that looks as beautiful as it works, this is the knife for you.
6. Tojiro DP Gyutou – 8.2” (21cm)
In contrast to the Zelite, the Tojiro is all about function and not so much about form. Despite its unappealing appearance, this stain-resistant knife may be used by both left and right-handed chefs.
The sharpness of this knife right out of the box is the most remarkable feature. It is very sharp, and we cannot emphasize this enough; even the most seasoned cooks shiver in their aprons while using it.
If you or your fellow kitchen users are clumsy, avoid this knife; nevertheless, if you like the excitement of slicing through various meals as if they were made of cotton candy, youll enjoy using the Tojiro.
One of the knife’s drawbacks is that the spine itself is a little pointy. It’s not a deal breaker, but it’s frustrating. The metal also scratches and stains readily, so don’t toss it in the sink or dishwasher; you’ll need to be careful with this one.
It’s lighter than the Zelite, but not too light. If you have bigger hands, the clearance area beneath the handle may be inadequate.
We believe the Tojiro DP Gyutou is a fantastic purchase, ideal for a novice or someone looking to swap in their German-style chefs knife without spending a fortune. However, given the little price difference, we prefer the Zelite Infinity’s unique appearance and comfort.
7. Victorinox Swiss Army 6” Fibrox Pro Boning Knife with Flexible Blade
The Victorinox is our top suggestion for an economical but effective boning knife, with the quality youd expect from the original producer of the Swiss Army knife.
The high grade stainless steel blade is narrow, as is customary for boning knives, to allow for more flexibility while sliding around bones. The sharpness is acceptable, and it re-sharpens effectively.
Even among boning knives, the degree of flex varies depending on the kind of meat. This knife has enough flex to bone fish and fowl but not so much that it seems fragile, and it can even handle bigger portions of meat like game or even an entire pig.
Even with damp hands, the Fibrox Pro handle provides a solid grip. Because there is no bolster, a protective finger guard is integrated into the handle. Because there is no bolster, you may use the whole blade length to slice.
This is a terrific little boning knife that can handle finer tasks like skinning as well as larger butchering duties. If you eat fish on occasion, it also works well as a filleting knife.
8. DALSTRONG Paring Knife – Gladiator Series Paring Knife – German HC Steel – 3.75”
Another outstanding knife from Dalstrong, this paring knife is made of stain-resistant, high grade German steel and has a comfortable black pakkawood handle.
It’s sharp enough, but it’ll need constant sharpening, maybe even before you use it.
Again, the packaging for this simple knife is extravagant, some may even say overkill, but that means it’s a relatively humble gift to give someone as a housewarming or wedding gift. You even receive a handy sheath for safekeeping.
This type has a thick blade, which helps with strength but also restricts your ability to cut ultra fine slices.
You may also notice that the blade is quickly discolored. If this troubles you, choose the Mercer below, which is more stain resistant.
9. Mercer Culinary Genesis 3.5” Forged Paring Knife
The Mercer Culinary Genesis knife is somewhat smaller and composed of high grade German steel, which should withstand rust, corrosion, and discoloration.
It has a complete tang, which is unusual for a paring knife and gives it greater balance and robustness.
The Mercer has an advantage over the more costly Dalstrong in terms of sharpness straight out of the box, so much so that you can finely slice a ripe tomato and it keeps an edge nicely, but it will still need sharpening on a frequent basis.
The Santoprene handle will not deteriorate when exposed to cooking oils, and it features a strong, non-slip grip that we found to be one of the most pleasant grips tested.
This knife should not rust or discolor if properly cared for, which includes a thorough hand cleaning. Despite being half the price of the Dalstrong, this knife is our top choice. It has the perfect amount of flex and weight, and we enjoy how the granton edge keeps meals from sticking.
10. Kyocera Advanced Ceramic Revolution Series 5
This is the only ceramic knife on our list, and it features a white blade with tiny serrations. Ceramic will never rust or react to acidic foods or oils due to its composition.
Ceramic, on the other hand, requires a little more attention. Hand washing is required, and it will not function with standard knife sharpeners. Use only wooden or plastic chopping boards to avoid chipping porcelain.
Most significantly, ceramic knives will not withstand twisting or bending movements because the fragile blade may crack or break off. It will not be able to handle bones, but it will slice through boneless meat, tomatoes, and bread like margarine.
Because ceramic is significantly lighter than any other material, it may take some getting used to. Although the blade may be fragile and prone to chipping if not properly cared for, it will be extra-sharp and will remain that way for about ten times longer than steel blades.
SEE ALSO: Best Ceramic Knives
This Kyocera utility knife is ideal for minor and delicate culinary tasks, however it should not be used for heavy duty chopping. If you don’t mind buying a Kyocera sharpener or sending it back to the manufacturer for sharpening every now and then, it’s a useful addition to any kitchen at a fair price.
11. J.A. Henckels International Eversharp 8-Piece Steak Knife Set
These steak knives all have a full tang and three rivets for long-lasting strength. To add extra sharpness, the bigger serrations incorporate microscopic micro-serrations.
They are reasonably priced, with 4.5-inch steel blades made of stamped construction. They are sharp from the start and maintain their sharpness nicely.
As the pricing suggests, they are not high-quality blades, so if you want something that will truly blow you away in the kitchen, seek elsewhere.
They are lightweight and lack a sense of superiority, with fragile blades that bend much too much. The points may flex or even shatter easily, and instead of slicing through your steak, they prefer to rip it apart.
This set should be enough for anyone looking for a low-maintenance set that will do the job satisfactorily without costing an arm and a leg. On the plus side, you can clean them in the dishwasher and, apart from dumping them around the kitchen sink, you don’t have to be too picky about it.
12. Victorinox Swiss Army 3-Piece Gourmet Cheese Knife Gift Set
This is a really nice looking collection from the Swiss legends. The set includes a hard parmesan cheese knife, a semi-soft cheese knife, and a semi-hard cheese knife with a fork tip.
All have a full tang, resulting in a robust, balanced instrument. The blade is comprised of a high carbon, non-steel substance. The perforations in the semi-soft cheese knife work well to prevent softer cheeses from adhering to the blade.
All three are user-friendly, with enough knuckle clearance and blades that are sharp enough for the job at hand. They’re bigger than you may imagine, but they’re well-made and simple to use.
All three are reasonably priced, especially when compared to other high-end cheese knives. With this package, you’ll be able to meet all of your cheese demands while also saving money. The only reason you should not purchase this is if you are lactose sensitive or cannot tolerate cheese. Aside than that, what’s not to like?
13. Norpro 139 Grip-EZ Cheese Knife
Cheese knives, like cheese, are not all made equal; varied grades are required for soft, hard, crumbly, or semi-soft kinds.
The broad grip on this Norpro EZ cheese knife makes slicing simpler. It is dishwasher safe, however we suggest hand washing your knives.
With an 11-inch stainless steel blade, this knife is perfect for stickier cheeses like brie. It may be utilized by either left or right handed people.
At the low end of the price range, it won’t break the bank, nor will it be the most spectacular knife you possess, but it will get the job done. If, like me, you can polish a wheel of brie or camembert in 5 minutes, this knife will assist you in completing the task in record speed.
14. Cangshan V2 Series 59533 German Steel Forged Bread Knife, 8”
The simple bread knife is your collection’s gentle giant, underappreciated yet unquestionably significant.
This German steel Cangshan V2 knife includes a 5-inch grip and an 8-inch full tang blade. The blade is plainly more prone to yellowing and staining since it is not made of stainless steel.
Hand washing and drying them as soon as possible after usage should help keep them clean.
Most significantly, this serrated knife readily produces extremely fine tomato slices and nearly melts into bread and pastries.
With a robust and durable construction and good balance, it seems more costly than it is. Although usually serrated knives do not sharpen easily, this one does, and the edge will endure a long time between sharpenings.
This powerful and efficient knife punches beyond its weight and is a terrific, economical addition to any kitchen.
15. Zwilling J.A. Henckels Twin Pro S 7-Piece Knife Set with Block
If you decide you’d rather purchase yourself a matching set of kitchen knives, why not go with a known quality brand like Zwilling? This set provides the essentials for most household or commercial kitchens, without leaving any knives underutilized.
A 3-inch paring knife, a 5-inch serrated utility knife, a 5-inch hollow edge santoku, and an 8-inch chefs knife are included in the set. They’ve also included a set of kitchen shears and a 9-inch sharpening blade, all of which are housed in an elegant mahogany block.
This set’s blades are all full tang forged stainless steel. Zwilling has been working on perfecting the steel recipe for over 300 years; you can’t get much more experienced than that.
This set is suitable for everyone from a professional chef to a novice. There is no bread knife, but the serrated utility knife may be able to accomplish the same task.
Although the other J.A. Henckels in our evaluations are of a lesser grade, worldwide brand, this set is from the Zwilling premiere series, which is made in Germany.
As a result, they are an investment that should last a long time and are reputed to be sturdy without staining or chipping, simple to sharpen, and excellent at preserving razor sharp edges.
This kit is suitable for the novice who wants to get a head start with a few professional-style knives.
Knife Maintenance Tips
Even if you spend a lot of money on a kitchen knife, it will eventually need to be sharpened. Obtain a steel or a sharpening stone. Steel may help keep your blade’s edge sharp, but it can’t build a new one on a dull knife. Stones are capable of both.
Never use your knife on stone, glass, steel, or ceramic surfaces. Wood or plastic cutting boards are the finest options.
Knives should be stored with care. Make use of a knife block or roll, as well as a magnetic strip. Throwing them in a drawer with other utensils might cause them to get damaged, lose their sharpness, or cut you as you fumble around in there.
Make it a habit to wash and dry any knife as soon as possible after using it. Even though they are promoted as dishwasher safe, knives fare significantly better with a gentle hand wash (How to clean a kitchen knife). This will assist to keep stains and corrosion at bay.
When it comes to an excellent kitchen knife, you often don’t realize what you’re missing until you have a taste of it. You’ll wonder how you ever survived with that cheap, fragile piece of metal that mangled your ingredients until you try one of our best options, such as the Tojiro DP Gyutou.
If money is a barrier, go for one truly fantastic knife that will handle the most of your culinary duties rather than five subpar performances that will provide you with little joy. If we had to choose, we think the DALSTRONG Gladiator Series chef knife strikes a decent compromise between price and quality. Remember that with proper care, the correct knife may last you decades, so select wisely and enjoy your cutting! It’s worth to check The 5 Best Kitchen Shears To Buy In 2023
What are the 3 knives that everyone should have?
In a kitchen, just three knives are essential: a chef’s knife, a paring knife, and a serrated knife.
What knife does Gordon Ramsay recommend?
Ramsay favors Henckels knives, a German-style brand, according to MasterClass. According to Acit Group, German-style chef’s knives are known for their hefty blades that are robust enough to handle chicken bones due to their added mass.
Which kitchen knives stay sharpest longest?
Stainless steel knives are your best option in terms of durability.
What is the most used knife by chefs?
The Knife of the Chef
Chef’s knives are the workhorse of any kitchen since they can be used for a broad variety of activities, from the most detail-oriented, such as slicing vegetables, to larger-scale, such as slaughtering chicken.
What is the most forbidden knife?
A ballistic knife is just a blade affixed to a hollow handle that fits within another hollow handle containing a coil spring.
What knife shape is best for everything?
KNIFE WITH A DROP POINT
The drop point blade is often seen on hunting and EDC knives and works well in most circumstances. The “Goldilocks” blade shape is ideal for the majority of jobs. The robust tip and broad belly are ideal for meat processing, slicing, and opening boxes from your last knife purchase.
What knife does Guy Fieri use?
Ergo Chef Knives – Guy Fieri.
What knives do actual chefs use?
Overview of the Best Chef Knives
J.A. Henckels Professional S Chef Knife by Zwilling.
Classic Ikon Santoku by Wusthof.
Meridian Elite Stealth Chef Knife from Messermeister.
MAC MTH-80 – Professional Series Chef Knife with Dimples Global Santoku (G-48).
Shun the Traditional Chef Knife.
What knives do Michelin star chefs use?
If you’re a Michelin-starred chef looking to add to your collection (Tom presently has two), you’ll need the best. Gou (translated from Japanese as ‘the outstanding’) knives are handcrafted by artisans in Seki, the same Japanese city where Samurai swords have been forged for over 700 years.
Is there a knife that never goes dull?
Sharpest Knives Never Lose Precision – Miracle Blade IV World Class Professional Series Black 7-piece Ceramic Knife Set Cut: Never Dulls, Rusts, or Stains.