The cornerstone of any home cook or chef’s toolset is a high-quality set of knives. Not only will they help you with daily meal preparation, but the right knife can take your presentation from bland to magazine worthy.
While investing in the best kitchen knives can be pricey, the right set will last for years with proper care and maintenance.
Some die-hard knife enthusiasts scoff at the idea of purchasing a knife set and recommend buying pieces individually, but with research and understanding, you can also get a good deal on a quality set.
Knives make a great gift for cooking enthusiasts and can complete a kitchen set-up.
The key is, knowing what to look for that proves quality and effectiveness when you read kitchen knife reviews.
If the idea of a knife set appeals to you, it’s important to note that a well-known brand name doesn’t necessarily equate to quality.
Sometimes companies will sell lower end products as part of a high-priced set hoping that the name recognition will be enough to cause to buy.
Another trick that marketers use when packing a knife set is to include several variations of the same style of knife, in different sizes, for example, making it seem like you’re getting a lot of value for your money.
Unfortunately, all this gets you are several blades that you don’t need and won’t use.
In this guide, we will give you lots of tips and info to help you avoid making these mistakes when buying the best kitchen knives.
With our help and a little research, you’ll be able to find the perfect set that makes you prep work both easy and enjoyable, allowing you to produce restaurant quality meals at home.
We will review top blades on the market, and give you helpful buying hints to get the most for your money regardless of your budget is one of the best professional chef knives on the market.
After reviewing this guide to the best kitchen knives, you’ll have the knowledge to make an intelligent purchase to round out the tools in your culinary arsenal.
- Best Kitchen Knife
- Best Kitchen Knife Set
- Other Essential Kitchen Knives
- Ceramic vs Steel Kitchen Knives- What are the Diffrences?
- Best Kitchen Knives For The Money
- Chicago Cutlery Essentials 15-Piece Knife Set
- Cuisinart Advantage 12-Piece Knife Set Review
- Best 15 Piece Kitchen Knife Set from J.A. Henckels
- Super Sharp Stainless Steel Knife Block Set
- Utopia Premium Class 12 Piece Kitchen Knife Set
- Utopia Kitchen Stainless Steel 6 Piece Knives Set Review
- Livingkit Stainless Steel Kitchen 14 Piece Knife Set Review
- Wooden Block 13 Piece – Chef Knife Set Review
Best Kitchen Knife
A pillar of the best kitchen knife set is a high-quality chef knife. The best chef knives are the perfect multi-purpose tool in your arsenal. They can slice, dice, chop, and mince all your essential ingredients, like meat, herbs, vegetables, and fruit.
Chef knives are between 6 and 14 inches long and are between 1.5 and 2 inches high. They come in a variety of designs, metals, weights, and textures giving you lots of options to start your knife collection.
Here we’ve rounded up the five best chef knives for any budget and included reviews on these best kitchen knives below.
The Japanese made MAC knife is one of the best professional chef knives on the market. A favorite amongst seasoned cooks and amateurs alike, the 8-inch blade is made from lightweight steel and is the perfect maneuverable size to chop every ingredient in a beef stir fry, from the meat to the vegetables and spices, with ease.
The high-quality Pakka wood handle is durable and gives you a good grip with lots of control whether you have large or small hands.
The dimpled blade prevents food from sticking while you’re chopping. This is one of the best kitchen knives investments you can make to start your collection.
An alternative to buying individual knives is to invest in a high-quality kitchen knife set.
To help you find the best kitchen knife set for you, we’ve reviewed five top choices, and given you information on the types of knives included, their construction, durability, and capabilities, information on extra accessories, and the price of each of these options.
This eight-piece Wusthof Knife set has everything a chef needs to jumpstart their cutlery collection.
The 8-inch chef’s knife is a high-quality multipurpose tool that is perfect for chopping and slicing. For tasks that require more control, like coring or peeling, you have the choice of using a 3.5-inch paring knife or the 4.5-inch utility knife.
As one of the best kitchen knife sets on the market, you’ll also get an 8-inch bread knife, a 6-inch sandwich knife, a 9-inch sharpening steel and kitchen shears. These pieces fit into a knife block set with 17 slots, giving you room to grow your collection.
The blades themselves are the quality that you expect from German manufacturer Wusthof.
They are crafted from a single piece of high-carbon stainless steel and ground to be strong, incredibly sharp and polished. The knives all have a full tang that runs the length of the handle and is secured with three rivets.
The handles are made of a synthetic material, giving them a good grip even in wet conditions.
As one of the best kitchen knives sets available, this Wustof blade comes with a lifetime warranty to give you peace of mind with your purchase.
This German made set by Zwilling are some of the best value kitchen knives for someone who needs a lot of variety in their collection.
Blades manufactured by Zwilling, and their upscale partner Henckels International, are some of the best made by the company. They use a Friodur ice-hardening process to cure the blade to 57 Rockwell Hardness. Comprised of high-carbon steel that’s resistant to staining, every blade is hand forged, laser sharpened and includes a fully visible tang through the handle.
The 19- piece set includes a variety of knives and tools that will help you get any job done in the kitchen.
The block includes the multi-use 8-inch chef, 4.5-inch utility and 6-inch utility knives you commonly find in most sets.
In addition, there is a 2.5-inch peeler giving you precise accuracy when peeling fruits and vegetables, a 4-inch parer, and a 5-inch serrated utility.
The 7-inch Santoku knife is a nice addition to the set and comes complete with a hollow edge and 10-inch degree angle, setting it apart from the rest of the knives in his collection. Also included are an 8-inch bread knife, and eight steak knives.
Extra accessories that complete the set are kitchen shears, a 9-inch sharpening tool to keep your knives’ edge razor sharp, and a bamboo storage block to keep your collection organized.
This is one of the best chef knife sets for someone looking for a variety of tools at an affordable price point.
A good quality kitchen knife set doesn’t need to cost hundreds of dollars, and the 15-piece option from Cuisinart is a good example of high-quality stainless steel design.
The stainless-steel blades are rust-resistant and include a high carbon content giving them a hard, lasting edge.
This design incorporates a bolster, which helps to balance each of the blades better and provides stability and control when chopping, slicing, or paring.
This is a nice feature if you’re new in the kitchen and need a little extra space between your fingers and the sharp edge of the blade for safety.
Each of the blades features an ergonomic stainless steel handle, which looks elegant and fits nicely in small to medium sized hands.
Users with large hands may find that they need to grip the knives tightly to stay in complete control of the blade. Thankfully, the handles are hollow, so while they look elegant in their design, they aren’t heavy or bulky like a solid metal handle would be.
This is the best kitchen knife set for a chef with lots of needs. It includes an 8-inch chef knife and a second 8-inch slicing (or carving) knife.
If you’re someone who wants to host Thanksgiving dinner or the thought of serving up a perfectly portioned slab of prime rib appeals to you, the carving knife is a must for your collection.
You’ll also get a versatile 7-inch Santoku knife, a 5.5-inch serrated utility knife, a 3.5-inch paring knife, and a 3.5-inch birds beak paring knife.
The bird’s beak design, with its curved blade and sharp point at the end, is the perfect addition if you’re completing the best professional knife set.
It allows you to carve intricate designs into fruits and vegetables for beautiful garnishes to your meals and is also a handy tool when it’s time to carve pumpkins for Halloween.
Finally, Cuisinart completes the set with an 8-inch sharpening tool, a set of all-purpose household shears, and the block to keep everything organized.
Cooks who are looking to expand their kitchen knife collection to include some additional essentials should consider the 18-piece set from Chicago Cutlery.
This set uses high-carbon stainless steel in its construction, which is resistant to both rust and pitting. Chicago Cutlery utilizes taper grind edge technology to give the blades an extremely sharp edge that holds up with use and is easy to recreate with sharpening.
The black handles are made from polyurethane and have a soft grip design. These are a friendly choice for small to medium sized hands, and give you a lot of control over the blade, even if your hands are damp.
While some knife enthusiasts prefer a wood handle with the full tang visible, this type of handle is common in sets at this price point, and this material gives you good maneuverability of the blades.
The set includes a 7.75-inch chef’s knife, which is a bit shorter than some of the others we’ve reviewed but still a functional length.
There’s also an 8-inch slicer (or Carver), a 3.25-inch parer, 3-inch peeler, and 5-inch utility in the mix. You’ll get eight 4.25-inch steak knives that you can use at dinner time when you have steak, chicken or pork based dishes that require a sharper blade.
Also included are a 5-inch partoku, the smaller counterpart to the Santoku that gives you versatility with slicing and chopping small items, and is the perfect cheese knife.
A 7-inch santoku and 8-inch sharpening steel round out the set, which fits perfectly in the pine knife block.
This 22-piece Baldwyn kitchen knife set from Oster gets you a lot of bang for your buck.
While you won’t find some of the high-end extras, like high-density steel or visible full tangs in wooden handles with this set, you will have lots of knives to choose from in this versatile set.
The blades are crafted from stainless steel and feature a polyoxymethylene handle that looks like metal but provides you with the safe grip and stability that you find with a rubber design.
The polished mirror blades are both attractive and rust resistant and will stand up to repeated use with proper care. The set comes with eight basic 4.5-inch steak knives that are perfect for everyday use at the dinner table.
The kitchen knife set also includes 11 specialty knives, giving you a little bit of everything essential for a chef’s kitchen. There’s both an 8-inch chef and 8-inch carving knife, as well as a more compact 6-inch chef and 6-inch cleaver in the set.
The heavy cleaver is especially handy if you like preparing dishes that feature meat with bones, like ribs or homemade bone broths, and can also be used for crushing a clove of garlic perfectly.
There’s also a 6-inch fork for serving meat dishes, a 6-inch utility knife, and a 6-inch boning knife. While some cooks may argue that the utility knife could do the job of both, the boning knife gives you extra control when removing skin or navigating around a joint in a cut of meat.
If Cornish hens, whole chickens, or other small game are on the menu, having a good quality boning knife makes meal preparation much easier.
Finally, you’ll also get an 8-inch bread knife and a 3.5-inch paring knife to round out the specialty blades in this set. Everything fits into the swiveling hardwood counter block, which also houses the included sharpening steel and kitchen shears.
Chicago offers this polymer handle, high carbon stainless steel 15 piece knife set at a giveaway price. Its sleek design is similar to its 18 piece counterpart, with an exclusive taper grind edge technology impressively known for its precision in cutting.
Its handles are perfectly comfortable and safe for use, with triple compression stainless steel rivets acting as a securing base.
This one-piece design has a full tang forming part of the handle for added strength and balance.
Its blades made from stainless steel are perfect for protecting it from rust, plus the set comes with a wooden block to protect said blades from wearing out easily.
Cuisinart offers a 12-piece knife set, consisting of six knives and six knives covers. It consists of an 8” slicing knife, 8” serrated bread knife, 7” Santoku Knife, 6.5” utility knife, 3.5” Paring Knife and an 8” chef knife.
This colorful stainless steel set is perfect for preventing cross food contamination during slicing.
Its classy handles are designed to provide maximum comfort in the kitchen, plus it comes with blade guards for each of its knives.
These stylish knives with their color-coded hues, also come with a non-stick coating which makes slicing food a lot easier.
J.A. Henckels offers this sleek looking 15 piece knife set, complete with a wooden block for an incredible price.
The set includes an 8” chef’s knife, an 8” inch paring knife, a 5 inch serrated utility knife, sharpening steel, a 3” paring knife, a 5” santoku knife, an 8” bread knife, shears and six 4.5” steak knives.
These stainless steel knives come with polypropylene handles that have been designed ergonomically to give the best kind of comfort in the kitchen.
The set is built with blades that are rust and stain resistant with a full tang for durability.
Stone Boomer presents this premium stainless steel 14 piece kitchen set, together with an acrylic block. This set includes an 8” chef knife, an 8” bread knife, six 4.5” steak knives, 8” kitchen scissors, 5” utility knives and a 3.5” paring knife.
Its tapered handles and weightless feel, provide the perfect balance and comfort when cutting food items.
Made from heavy-duty resistant grades steel, the blades are protected from corrosion and rust.
In addition to the knives set, stone boomer throws in a sharpener as a bonus, for an easier time at protecting your knives.
Utopia Kitchen offers its 12 knife set complete with an acrylic block. It consists of an 8-inch carving knife, an 8-inch bread knife, and a 5-inch utility knife all with a thickness of 2.5mm.
It also has six 4.5 inch steak knives and a 5-inch paring knife with a thickness of 2mm. This one piece is perfect as there is no fear of the handles falling off.
Its premium steel handles are made from heavy duty stainless steel to protect it from rusting and pitting. Its stylish handles are made for easy use.
This utopia kitchen 6 piece knives set is similar to its 12 piece counterpart in that it comes with an acrylic stand for storing the knives.
It’s designed, while different still holds the basics of ergonomics with its once piece stylishly designed handle for balance, chopping precision, easy usage, and durability.
It is made from 420-grade stainless steel which protects the blades from rusting and pitting.
The set includes an 8-inch bread knife, an 8-inch carving knife, an 8-inch chef knife, a 3.5-inch paring knife and a 5-inch utility knife.
This stainless steel 14 piece kitchen knife set comes with a wooden box for storage purposes. Its 420-grade stainless steel blades are perfect for protecting it from rust, corrosion or pitting.
It is made with exclusive taper grind technology for an improved precision in cutting and an easier time at re-sharpening.
It has triple-rivet POM handles which make it easier and more comfortable for use.
This set includes an 8-inch bread knife, an 8-inch chef knife, a 5-inch utility knife, an 8-inch slicing knife, a 3.5-inch peeling knife and six 4.5 inch serrated steak knives.
This 13 piece set is made with a thickness relative to ensuring comfort when being used.
Its sleek design comes with polypropylene plastic handles which are not only beneficial for its soft grip but also resists moisture and chemical bases.
The set comes with a rubberwood knife block for storing the knives as well as a kitchen scissors, an 8-inch carving knife, an 8-inch bread knife, an 8-inch chef knife, a 5-inch utility knife, six 5 inch steak knives, a butcher block and a 3.5-inch paring knife.
If you purchase a set of knives, you’ll likely get what most chefs refer to as “the basics” with your block. However, if you’re building your own collection piece by piece, you’ll want to be sure you have the essentials in your collection.
Also, if you are buying a knife block set, it’s important to be sure to not miss out on a design that you won’t have room for in your block if you want to expand.
In addition to a high-quality chef’s knife, which serves multiple purposes in the kitchen, you’ll want to invest in the following:
A Japanese style blade, the Santoku knife is another multi-purpose powerhouse in your kitchen. Translating as “three virtues” or “three uses,” the knife is an excellent tool if you need to slice, dice, or mince vegetables, fruits, or herbs.
Like your chef’s knife, the Santoku is a versatile blade, but it has a different shape and design. Rather than a curved edge, the Santoku lays straight and has slight hollowed out indentations on the sides to keep food from sticking when you chop.
For tasks that require a lot of motor control and a very sharp blade, you’ll want a paring knife. The 3.5-inch blade gives you precision detail, which makes it possible to do things like peel fruits and vegetables, core vegetables, or devein shrimp with incredible accuracy.
You’ll want to be sure that the knife has a razor-sharp edge, and also fits nicely in your hand. It’s important that the blade if both agile and has a comfortable grip for you to get the most out of this kitchen knife.
If you’ve ever tried to slice a loaf of bread without a bread knife, chances are you completely butchered it. If you want to get a nice, even cut without tearing into the loaf, it’s essential to have this blade in your arsenal.
Typically, a longer knife, between eight and ten inches, your bread knife will have a serrated edge that’s perfect for gripping and slicing through a crusty loaf without smashing it down or tearing it to pieces.
They can also come in handy if you’re carving up large fruit, like watermelon, or a large, hard squash like a spaghetti squash.
Here we will give you shopping tips on each of these essential knife types, and review our top five picks in each category.
So, Ceramic vs Stainless kitchen knives you ask, eh? Until now, a plethora of us still don’t see the minor and major differences that these two knives have – and that is an unfortunate truth.
Basically, these are the most vital knives faceted for the kitchen setting, to date. Then again, if you’re still baffled about what variations are between the two of them, really, then you should read the following content to finally get some clarity.
Ceramic Kitchen Knives and Their Composition
Ceramic kitchen knives are actually made out of raw materials. Upon crafting, the raw materials are excavated for ground all the way to micro-grain pulverization.
The pulverized slurry from that phase then gets pumped into a spray dryer – it dries off and returns back to the powder form. What follows is the molding of the powder where it is compressed through a machine with roughly 300 to 380 tons of net pressure into molds of knives.
It is then put into stacking upon preparation for heating at a temp exceeding 1000 degress. Through this process, the ceramic knives become harden.
The third stage would comprise hot isostaticism where the ceramic knives go through the carbide wax polish, edge smoothening, edge grinding and finally, buffing.
Steel Kitchen Knives and Their Composition
There is a great explanation on why steel knives are stainless and durable. First of all, they are alloys. Having that said, they are composed of two metals or more depending on the manufacturer and the class of the kitchen knife.
Good examples of the metal elements they are made out of would be carbon, iron, chromium and for high-grade knives, titanium.
Steel knives made out of carbon, iron and titanium are known to make the strongest knives with blades that last for a vast expanse of aeon.
Cheaper stainless knives are the ones that are made out of chromium, manganese, cobalt, carbon, molybdenum, vanadium and silicon being that these elements are widely available.
Stainless knives from these elements can make a 16-layered carbide steel that do not rust on all sides.
Ceramic Knives vs Steel-Why the Primary is Better
Now, let’s talk about factors that make ceramic knives better than steel ones. Here are the following:
Sharpness: Ceramic blades are very hard due to the materials they are made out of. One of the raw materials this class is composed of is actually proven to be more solid than diamonds. After sharpening, the razor edge protrudes – an edge that will never tear apart.
When sharpening is required, you can ask for the manufacturer to sharpen it without incurring any cost – a promising policy of virtually all ceramic knife makers. On the contrary, steel knives are also of great hardness but does require frequent sharpening, which means service charges will incur.
Durability : Interesting enough, ceramic kitchen knives are actually very solid and durable. These knives can retain sharpness for an extended timeframe than the typical steel knives. As a matter of fact, you can savour a couple years without even bothering to sharpen them. Plus, they do not rust at all unlike metals.
Odors : So, do ceramic knives stink? Nah or should I say, not at all! These knives are non-porous and can keep the blade against odor transfer from a certain food product to another.
For instance, cut anything spicy out of it, rinse a bit and move on to cutting something. The result? Voila! No spicy sensation to the other food product at all.
Sanitary : One of the most loved features of kitchen professionals about ceramic knives is that they keep clean due to high density and non-porous factoids.
Just imagine your face with no pores at all, it doesn’t lead to pimples, right? The same principle goes to ceramic knives. A gentle scrubbing should do for an ultimately clean feel and look.
Mass : Ceramics are known to be lightweight, and so are ceramic knives. This allows you to cut through certain items without straining your arm and hurting a vein, literally. Just like a pro, you can cut through swiftly and precisely.
– No rusting! If it does, then you’ve been scammed because rusting is against the natural qualities of ceramic materials.
Ceramic vs Steel Knives – Why the Latter is Better?
Okay, to tell you the truth, we’re not being bias in this article – which is why after talking about the pros of ceramic knives, we’re going to tackle the good stuff about steel knives. So, here goes.
Stainless Blades : As the name suggests, a stainless steel knife has a blade that should never depreciate by all means in terms of its appearance.
It comes with a natural barrier against corrosion and can resist rusting even when exposed to air and water due to alloy chromium, nickel, iron, molybdenum, carbon and nickel components that make 11 percent of the entire knife.
Sharpen with Ease : With the use of knife blocks and the simplest honing tools, you can sharpen steel knives from the tang to the edge with a quick turnaround time and lesser exertion of force.
Additionally, there are more sharpening tools available for steel kitchen knife, particularly electric sharpeners.
Variation : We all have our preferences, especially with the size. Good thing steel knives come in different sizes, quality and styling.
That way, you can find something that suits your budget and up to your preferences in terms of the moulding and handling go.
For instance, you can go for a titanium integrated steel knife that can provide a straighter and sleeker edge with a blade that can perform true cutting precision with no corrosion.
Unbreakable : Just like the link that binds two soul mates, steel knives are definitely resilient no matter what context you use it on, for real. The solidification phase of these knives are integrated with molecular compacting. This leads to a recognizably extra massive weight and force.
Cleaver Knives : If ever you need to cook some dishes that require dealing with bony contents again, you wouldn’t have to worry at all because steel knives come in cleaver form – that can cut through hard and soft bones and ligaments.
Aside from that, steel cleaver knives can easily chop hard veggies like squash and potato without adding too much force to your fist and without unevenly shredding such veggies.
Durability : One of the greatest features of steel knives would be their natural durability. With proper care and facilitation of chopping, mincing and overall culinary skills, you can maintain the sharp edge of the steel knife for long.
However, you should consider hand-washing it with gentle soap and total drying upon storage for care and safety purposes.
The next thing you know, your steel knife is steel as good as new if you strongly adhere on its recommended sustenance initiatives that are of utmost simplicity.
Ceramic Kitchen Knives- The Downsides
Then again, nothing in this world is perfect and that includes these two main types of kitchen knives. So, let us begin with the cons about ceramic kitchen knives and here are the following:
Brittleness and Repair : Thought, it’s hardened, it does not ensure unbreakability. A ceramic knife is never intended for hardcore cutting – you can’t use it to slice a frozen beef meat or a pork chop bone – or pretty much anything that’s ultra hard.
Its blade comes thin and using it on hard objects may cause chipping on its tip. It may not shatter when dropped with the tip on the ground first, but chances are, the edge may fold.
While the chipping can be amended, experts don’t commend it. They reckon that professional alignment of the tip and edge may be required that can incur an expense out of your own pocket. Impractical.
Costly : Yes, ceramic knives are of dearer price tags compared to other choices out there. One of the reasons would be the complex process the crafting of it requires. Second, the materials are usually imported from Asian countries.
Dishwashing : Another unlikeable factor about ceramic knives is their sensitivity to certain dishwashing agents. Also, by leaving them by the dishwasher or when in direct contact with steel plates, the chip could get damaged. What’s worse?
If the handles of your ceramic knives are made out of wood, it is more likely to tear up when exposed to too much dishwashing agents and water. Inconvenient!
Steel Knives-The Downsides
Rust : As crazy as it may sound, but yes, steel knives do rust! How did that happen? Well, in my own experience, I agree that steel knives do rust.
However, I noticed that it happens you settle the blade on hot surfaces and giving it a shock by sudden water contact. Other than that, steel knives are resistant to any harsh chemical from different types of dishwashing solutions.
Weight : While the molecular compacting makes it highly solid, it also makes it heavy. That means on some cases, you may have to add some more force upon cutting through.
Frequent Sharpening : As mentioned earlier, steel knives require more sharpening. When you use it for 3 to 5 days straight, you can start to notice some blunting and harder cutting.
Durability : Steel knives are durable due to their molecular compound. Nonetheless, careless usage can reduce its lifespan.
If you want your steel knife to have true longevity, you should stick to what the care instructions in the package tells you or on a general note, give it a timely sharpen and sheath it when not in use.
Are Ceramic Knives Better?
You want an honest conclusion? No! Nothing beats the performance that the usual steel knives can endow. Ceramic knives are very limited as far as compatible contexts goes.
On the other hand, kitchen knives are multi-faceted, which means you can use them on virtually any cutting job not only limited in the kitchen.
Economically, steel knives deserve a kudos because they are far more cheaper than ceramic knives. While extra sensitive care is required for ceramic knives, simple acts of carefulness can keep your steel knives at its best.
Furthermore, in the clash of ceramic vs steel kitchen knives; the latter definitely outstanding.
Hope you are now able to realize the difference between ceramic and steel knives. If you are considering to buy a set of steel knife, we recommend to read our kitchen knife reviews to find right knives for your kitchen easily.
Conclusion : Choose The Best Kitchen Knives
This wraps up our reviews on the best kitchen knives to complete your collection. Whether you’re searching for a specific piece, like a chef’s knife, paring knife, or bread knife, or you want to get a high-quality knife set, we hope that these kitchen knife reviews help you to find the biggest bang for your buck.
Whether you have a large budget, and you’re looking for a high-end Japanese hand-forged design like what you’ll find in the elegant Shun models, or you’re building your collection on a budget, there is something here for everyone.