Best Chef’s Knives to Choose [Updated 2019]
When it comes to cooking prep, a chef’s knife will saves you lots of time and trouble. It is no doubt that the right knife is an extension of your forearm. But what makes a chef’s knife? How to choose a best chef’s knife that suits to you? Which one will make the cut? These questions are in the mind of most of cooking lovers.
Being confused choosing a chef’s knife? These following 9 chef’s knives could be the ones you are looking for.
1. AUGYMER 8 Inch Professional Chefs Knife Japanese High Carbon Stainless Steel Kitchen Sharp Knife with Gift Box
AUGYMER 8 inch is a Japanese high carbon stainless steel chef’s knife, with wood handle. The blade is 0.09inch/2.3mm thick.
With about 0.6%-0.75% carbon consisted, AUGYMER 8 inch’s strength, durability, sharpness and anti-rust ability is set an upper class. I have used it in outdoor events for months but I have never had to re-sharpen it. It is ideal for chopping, mincing, slicing, and dicing any kind of meat, fish and vegetables.
The chef’s knife’s curved handle makes from wood comfortably supports the users with good grips. It is perfect for me who frequently cook in the kitchen without any harm for my wrist and palm, or feeling fatigue. Moreover, though I put it in the dishwasher regularly I have never seen the wood swelled.
AUGYMER 8 inch interestingly comes in an elegant gift box, perfect for storing. I think it is a great idea for a gift to everyone who likes cooking with a professional chef’s knife in a beautiful package.
It may be comparable to one of the best chef’s knives in the world – the Wusthof Classic Icon hollow ground 8 inch in quality but I will save lots of money buying AUGYMER 8 inch. It is really hard for me to find something bad about this knife. If there is a thing it should be the knife’s appearance. The Damascus pattern is not suitable for a simple person like me. One more thing, I think AUGYMER 8 inch is much more designed for meat and fish than vegetable, sometimes I feel it lacks of momentum and not fit slicing hard vegetables.
However, put aside those things, if I am the one in need of a best budget chef’s knife with great quality, AUGYMER 8 inch is the one I will come up and pick immediately.
2. Vremi 10 Piece Colorful Knife Set – 5 Kitchen Knives with 5 Knife Sheath Covers – Chef Knife Sets
If you are looking for the best chef knife set for specific chef’s tasks, I would recommend the colorful and useful Vremi Sharp-As-A-Knife Set which includes 1 red chef’s knife with curved tip, 1 blue serrated knife, 1 orange paring knife, 1 purple carving knife, and 1 yellow utility knife. The blades are made from stainless steel, quite light in weight, covered by nonstick coatings and protective cover guards.
I really enjoy the smooth cut of these knives in different proteins in different tasks. The high-quality stainless steel blades help me take care of all jobs of chopping meat, slicing cheese, peeling fruits or vegetables, cutting bread and more with ease and little effort. Only simple maintenance needed to keep the knives in good quality. Hand washing and making sure that your knives are dry before sheathing them are enough. The knives always stay sharp with odor and stain resistant put on.
Confusing choosing a knife from a chopping cutlery set? It is not a problem with Vremi Sharp-As-A-Knife Set. Each knife is marked with one distingue color helping the user easily choose the knife for the task. I have not found myself in such an issue any more since using that set of knives. Moreover, with those rainbow colors on, Vremi Sharp-As-A-Knife Set is a wise choice to make our kitchen safe and attractive.
Another “flying color” of Vremi Sharp-As-A-Knife Set is its matching protective knife sheaths. It is truly helpful for us to keep blade’s sharp and hand’s safe. In addition, the coatings and the sheaths are all made from 100% BPA free, lead free materials, keeping you away from toxins.
However, the blades may become dull and need to be re-sharpened sometimes. But if you need a set of chopping cutleries that are durable, handy and easy to use, Vremi Sharp-As-A-Knife Set is absolutely the chef knives to go.
3. Wusthof Chef’s Knife, Classic 8-Inch
This Wusthof Classic 8 inch is an upper class unit of cutlery world – one the best chef’s knives that a professional chef uses in his kitchen. It is a forged, full tang chef’s knife with high-carbon stainless steel blade and seamless and triple-riveted handle. It is ideal for versatile cutting tasks with all kinds of protein.
The sharpness of this Wusthof chef’s knife is unbelievable, cutting through all kinds of meat, vegetable, fruit, and much more without effort. I was extremely impressed by such scary sharpness of the knife when it was first brought out of the box. If you are heading for Wusthof Classic 8-Inch Chef’s Knife, I strongly recommend you to learn dicing techniques properly before using it to be safe. But remember that struggling cutting something with a dull knife is much more dangerous.
Made from high-carbon stainless material and designed with a seamless handle, the professional chef knives as a whole much durable and feels a lot more comfortable in your hand. My Wusthof Classic 8-Inch Chef’s Knife has been put away wet many times, but I have never seen any rust spot on that steel.
The balance of the knife is absolutely stunning, helping us to chop, slice, mince and more quickly, smoothly and effectively. In comparison to a Japanese knife with the same length, German-made Wusthof Classic 8-Inch Chef’s Knife is fairly heavier. As expected, the knife is more suitable for users preferring some weight in their hands.
The con of Wusthof Classic 8-Inch Chef’s Knife is its expensive cost. But for those cook usually, it is worth the money.
4. Shun Chef’s Knife, DM0706 Classic 8-Inch
The knife’s blade is made from Japanese super steel with brilliant edge retention, called VG-10, keeping the knife’s sharpness for years. It is no doubt to me that Shun DM0706 Classic 8-Inch is the sharpest out of the box. In fact, the chef’s knife is made with the technique of making samurai sword in Seki City, Japan. Its strength and flexibility is enforced by 32 layers of high-carbon Damascus stainless steel, resulting in its strong corrosion resistant and easy maintenance.
I feel really comfort and controllable with the knife’s handle since it is made from Pakka wook and designed in D-shape that is really fitted into the palm of my hand.
I prefer the fineness of japanese chef knives like Shun DM0706 Classic 8-Inch rather than its heft for which German knives do a better job. It is perfect to use the Shun chef’s knife for cutting vegetables or preparing foods needed lightweight. I also find the knife’s blade a little brittle, so make sure to have limit use with hard surface boards and cooking proteins.
To say the least, the Shun chef’s knive is the best chef’s knife for the cost. If you are a fan of Japanese chef’s knife, this is the one you should take into consideration.
5. Zelancio Cutlery Premium Japanese 67 Layer High Grade VG-10 Damascus Steel Knives
This professional seven-piece set of cutting cutlery includes five professional chef’s knives, a pair of shears and a honing rod. The blades are made from 67 layers of VG-10 Damascus steel, centered by high carbon steel cores. Their tangs stretch all the way through to the end of Pakkawood handles.
It is really a pleasure to do food prep with the kit. These cutting cutleries come in different types making the set fit to all kind of preparation tasks. Whenever we need to fillet fish, cut meat, slide bread, and more we move effortlessly with these excellent Damascus steel blades in variety of shapes and razor sharpness. The handles are ergonomic. Using these tools we can feel well balance and good in our hand. They are well made for professional chefs and home cooks.
While its high quality is undeniable, the set is also handy and easy to maintain. All of these damascus chef knives, shears and honing rod come in an attractive case keeping our kitchen well-ordered and safe to use. It is also easy to bring out for outdoor activities. Due to its high quality coming from Japanese high class steel, it is easy to maintain the tools. We rarely need to hone the blades and hand wash only is enough.
However, everything has its good and bad sides. Seven pieces of cutting cutlery without covers in one box sometimes create scratches on them. But seriously, you will not regret buying these knives.
6. Top Chef by Master Cutlery, 15-Piece Knife Set
You want to buy a set of chef’s cutleries with high quality of cutting as Wusthof best chef’s knife set but do not have enough budget? Let’s go for Top Chef by Master Cutlery, 15-Piece Knife Set.
This is a 15 piece professional chef’s knife set with dimensions of 7.8 x 14 x 6 inches and weight of 8 pounds. The blades are made from ice-tempered stainless steel with hollow ground for sticking reduction, seamlessly connecting the handles with full tangs covered by non-slip polished bolsters.
Simply put this is a beautiful, durable and sharp cooking cutlery set. I am a big fan of this set’s anti-rust ability. I have owned this set for over 4 years but never seen them stained. I had my Top Chef 5 inch satoku knife, one of the best chef’s knives I have ever had, accidentally submerged in water all day long and there was no rust at all after dried by air. That really makes me amazed.
Unlike Japanese knives which are usually light-weighted, the Top Chef’s knives are quite heavy. In fact, I once use my Top Chef 7 inch santoku knife to open a mature coconut and it was heavy enough to crack it. But it is not designed for this purpose, so make sure just use them occasionally with such a hard thing.
One other reason makes me go for this this knife set is its reasonable price. It is 4 to 5 times cheaper than Wusthof chef’s knife set. That is quite a good price for such a high quality cooking cutlery set.
The con of the knife set is all about the handles. They are too small so it is difficult for a big-hand person like me to have good grips and consequently my muscles near my thumb feel sore sometimes.
Putting aside this con, this product is quite a good set of cooking cutleries to buy, especially with an affordable price.
7. ISSIKI Cutlery 7-Inch Stainless Steel Chopper Cleaver Butcher Knife for Home Kitchen or Restaurant, Chinese Chef Knife with Gift Box
This Chinese chef’s knife is fairly a go-to knife for both professional chefs and amateur cooks. The knife, which weighs 13.9 ounces, consists of 3.2 inch high-carbon stainless steel blade, ergonomic wood handle in a beautiful gift box.
This professional Chinese 7-Inch chef knife well support us in cutting and chopping with ultimate convenience. I was sick of my old rusted and slippery knives, so bought ISSIKI Cutlery 7-Inch and super impressed. It is not only rust-resistant but also razor sharp, cuts like butter. Using this stainless steel knife, it may serve us for decades.
It is not only very durable and practical but also safe to use. The Pakka wood handle is ergonomic, easy to hold, protecting us from any slipping or similar accidents. In addition, the box come with is a very useful place to store the knife when it is not in use since it is bloody sharp.
With the box, it is also a great idea to present ISSIKI Cutlery 7-inch especially to someone chasing his/her personal goal or challenge. The makings on the gift box as well as the act of knife gift-giving in Japanese culture have the meaning of cutting off the evil and opening up bright future.
However, for my personal use, there are still some limit sides with the knife. The blade is a little soft, sometime becomes not very sharp and needs to be re-sharpened. My knife also has some cracks in its handle, but still very good to be used.
For those pros and cons, ISSIKI Cutlery 7-inch is definitely worth the purchase. And it is a never-regret decision buying it.
8. Traditional S5198 8″ x 3-1/4″ Chinese Chefs Knife with Wooden Handle
Traditional S5198 8 inches x 3-1/4 inches is a chef’s knife designed under traditional Chinese style with the blade made from either stain-free steel, high-carbon steel or classic high-carbon steel connected to a real wood handle with brass compression rivets. The knife weights 0.75 pound, quite lighter than Wusthof or Zhen products of the same size.
The blade comes very sharp and light, easy to cut, slice and more without a problem. It is easy for us to scoop ingredients with such a wide blade. The handle from real wood gives us a better feeling of warmth and comfort than any normal chef’s knife.
I myself consider it as the best chef’s knife for veggies and meat cutting. Though the knife looks like a cleaver, it not actually a cleaver but a misnomer with thinner blade, 2 or 3 times as thin as a meat cleaver, therefore is designed for cutting vegetables and slicing boneless meat and not for chopping bones. Never use the knife on a hard surface.
It is a Chinese traditional knife so we have to have some traditional techniques in order to uses the knife the right way. For a good cutting, extend your thumb and forefinger beyond the handle on both side of the blade rather than wrap your hand around the handle. You will find the knife is absolutely stunning for cutting veggies, slicing onions or chopping peppers that way.
I would say this knife has the sharpness better than any other knives in my kitchen. However, the steel is not good enough to hold the blade always stay sharp. So remember to hand wash and dry your knife immediately after use. It also needs to be put into a sharpener occasionally for razor cuts. With some cares, you can easy keep the knife in good service. Mine is over 10 years old.
All in all, I strongly recommend this Traditional S5198 8″ x 3-1/4″ Chinese chef’s knife as the one you should have in your kitchen.
9. Victorinox Fibrox Pro Chef’s Knife, 8 inch chef knife
Victorinox Fibrox Pro Chef’s Knife, 8-Inch is a chef’s knife designed for multi-tasks with high-carbon stainless steel blade at extra width and 7.9 inch length. The slip-resistant and ergonomically designed handle is made from thermoplastic elastomeric. It is well designed for professionals who using knives all day long.
Given its edge is razor sharp, its handle is comfortable, the chef’s knife also well supports us with its superior weight and balance. Using the chef’s knife, which is weighted with high class European steel, our hand and wrist are kept away from fatigue.
The knife really feels like an extension of our hand with extra versatility. At 8 inches, this knife offers us with heft for completing larger tasks effortlessly, and maneuverability for easily accomplishing smaller tasks. The flat spine allows us to add more force when extra power needed. Moreover, the ergonomic, non-slip handle of the chef’s knife provides us a secure, comfortable grip even when greasy or wet, resulting in precise and effortless cuts every time.
What I do not like about Fibrox Pro Chef’s Knife, 8-Inch is its plastic handle that feels a little cheap. However, without any question, it is one of the best chef’s knives for the price. The Victorinox chef knife is razor sharp and cut precisely for which a Wolfgang Puck’s knife cannot do the job as good as that though they are at similar price. The sharpness and precision of Victorinox Fibrox Pro Chef’s Knife, 8-Inch is comparable to that of a Wusthof which is much more expensive. If you want the best knife, go for the Wusthof, but if you want a high cutting quality chef’s knife with a good price, Victorinox Fibrox Pro Chef’s Knife, 8-Inch is exactly the one to buy.
10. DALSTRONG Chef Knife – Gladiator Series – German HC Steel – 8″ (200mm)
Belonging to the Gladiator Series, this Dalstrong chef knife features a traditional design, ideal for those who prefer the look and feel of a classic European style knife. The blade is made from high-carbon German steel that is polished to a satin finish. It is sharp enough to easily slice through frozen garlic cloves right out of the freezer or dice onions which come out looking like a pro did it.
The handle has a lovely weight to it and the full tang helps create the perfect balance in the knife. The pinch grip at the bolster successfully eliminates the extra heft of the handle, making the knife more comfortable to grip, as if an extension of my hand. And pakkawood is the perfect material for the handle as it’s non-slip, impervious to oils and other liquid and won’t degrade over time.
The weight strikes a balance between being neither too heavy nor light that you feel the need to apply physical effort into cutting. I have used it to cut a watermelon, tomatoes, potatoes, chop nuts and chiffonade basil, all of which is cut like a dream.
The knife comes in a magnetic sealed box and covered by a hard protective plastic sheath. The sheath itself is a matte black, fits snugly and makes the knife look as if it belonged to a professional chef. Thus, this cooking item will make a wonderful gift for the cooking-lovers in your life, and no need for any extravagant gift box whatsoever.
There’s hardly anything to complain about this amazing kitchen knife other than the fact that the blade is not stainless. So my advice is to take good care of it and it will without a doubt return the favor. Trust me, this knife offers one of the best bangs for your buck out there.
11. Mercer Culinary Millennia 8-Inch Chef’s Knife
Mercer Culinary is not a brand well known to most consumers as their knives are mostly sold to culinary professionals and food service business through restaurants and other commercial outlets. Over the years, the brand has earned its reputation among the professionals for its dependable, long wearing knives. And this 8-ich Mercer chef knife has the best of both worlds, the quality and affordable price.
The knife is a straightforward, no non-sense tool made from high carbon Japanese steel. The blade shape bears great resemblance to the Victorinox Fibrox 8-inch Chef’s Knife previously mentioned, both of which have excellent cutting sharpness out of the box.
In deed, this knife is so amazingly sharp that I accidentally cut myself the first day using it, and has stayed sharp with daily use for well over a year. So far, it has cut everything like butter, from soft bread, hard boiled eggs to meat, raw veggies and minced garlic like a pro. Plus, the weight and balance is nice for great maneuverability.
One main difference between the Mercer and Victorinox comes down to the handle, which depends on your preference . While the latter has a higher chromed appearance, the Mercer has more of a polished finish. I have rather small hand size and this knife feels comfortable holding, plus the shape of the handle helps with controlling the knife, though if you like to wedge the blade between your thumb and first finger just ahead of the handle, you might not appreciate the shape.
For the price, I have to say this is one of the highest quality yet cheapest knives out there. My only regret is not having known about this sooner! Don’t make the same mistake as I did.
12. Miyabi 34373-203 Chef’s Knife
This Miyabi Chef Knife is not just an ordinary kitchen knife, but a true work of art and the picture doesn’t do it justice.
First off, the blade is made from G2 micro-carbide powder steel, which is incredibly light and high quality. The steel’s hardness also helps it keep the razor sharp edge. As a result, this knife cuts through everything like nobody’s business and handles all sorts of ingredients with ease. What’s more, the knife is perfectly balanced at the bolster, which I have tested by resting it on the back of another knife.
As for the performance, I am in awe, as meat, fish, vegetables are all sliced apart effortlessly. I can cut anything so thin it’s literally see-through. It was advised not to cut through bone with this knife as it could damage the blade, but that’s not what a chef’s knife is for in the first place. In addition, it is more corrosion resistant against acidic food like tomatoes and still unbelievably sharp.
The handle, made from light birchwood, is comfortable to grip and doesn’t get slippy with moisture nor oils thanks to the wooden construction. One small tip is to rub a thin coat of mineral oil on the handle for a few weeks and this will bring out a brilliant glow.
What made me went for this blade at the first place is the stunning flower Damascus pattern, reminiscent of retreating water on sand. I thought you would only find these on made-in-Japan katanas, or in movies and almost hated to use it as it’s so gorgeous. To top it off, you get an equally beautiful knife box, making it the perfect gift for the advanced chef in the family.
Using it and leave it be is not enough, you need to maintain with care a knife as nice as this. Use a water stone instead of a diamond steel or an electric wheel for a sharper edge. The next step is stropping, which gets it to where it will slice phone book paper with a straight, downward swipe. Hand wash only with a mild detergent and then wipe dry. The knife is sharp so always be mindful while holding it.
All that being said, this knife is not for everybody considering the price. If you’re starting out or not completely confident with knife handling, you might want to look at my other options.
13. J.A. HENCKELS INTERNATIONAL 31161-201 Classic Chef’s Knife, 8 Inch, Black
I would highly recommend this classic Henckels chef knife if you need a basic knife but not willing to splurge on an entire knife set.
The knife comes out of the package extremely sharp with great weight distribution, a bit on the heavier side. I have tested this knife on about everything you could imagine, and it performs while holding its edge extremely well. It wasn’t until about over a month of constant use that I noticed the edge to dull a little bit. Some minor touch up on the steel with my kitchen blade sharpener and it’s good as new.
The triple-riveted handle of the knife is also very well made, balance and fits my small hand perfectly as though it’s an extension of my hand. The black polymer is light and makes the knife comfortable to hold, offering a great grip and is also extremely easy to clean. One nit-picky complaint would be that the handle is squarish and its edges can wear at your palm with heavy use.
The knife has a good weight to it as well as a full tang, which translates to a better balance and construction quality. This has become my go-to knife for “small projects” particularly with veggies, while you’ll still want to keep a larger blade around for big cuts of meat.
In order to maintain its sharpness, I avoid putting the knife in the dishwasher, and clean it with a sponge and dish soap instead. The blade cleans nicely as well as being rust resistant, allowing for air drying the knife.
On the other hand, the spine of the knife is too sharp and makes it uncomfortable to hold with a proper grip, which leave my skin a bit irritated after lots of chopping veggies. All things being said, this Henckels knife is the perfect choice for a quality chef knife at a reasonable price. Highly recommended!
14. Zwilling J.A. Henckels Pro 7 Rocking Santoku Knife
I’ve owned a set of Henckel Pro’s and loved the 5’’ Santoku that cam stock, yet they still lack some of the capabilities of a larger chef knife. And this Zwilling pro 7 chef knife was able to close that gap.
The santoku knife is the Japanese version of the Western chef knife with several differences. It usually has a shorter length and also thinner than the latter. The blade is flat so it won’t rock on the cutting board, and can stay sharp for a long time. The term “santoku” means “three virtues”, which are slicing, dicing and mincing. Despite being made in Germany, this Zwilling Pro Santoku still keeps some of the Japanese elements with a few twist.
As with other products that Henckels takes pride in, this knife is forged from a single piece of Zwilling exclusive high carbon stainless steel, which allows for air drying without fear of rusting the blade. In addition, the blade also experienced a special ice-hardening process in order to create a remarkably sharp blade and ensure a long lasting edge.
The wedge-shaped blade and half bolster allows you to cut along the entire length of the blade, while the curved bolster supports your thumb to increase graspability, comfort and safety. One prominent feature of this knife is the hollow edges on the blades, which prevent food from sticking onto the knife while chopping.
With such high-quality construction, it’s reasonable to expect over-the-top performance. And this is in deed a solid knife which is able to dice and chop just like a santoku should. It runs quick cuts through raw meats, onions and tomatoes without having to scrape all the bits and pieces off the blade, which could be dangerous for your hand.
On the downside, the arch on the spine makes it difficult for me to scrape the food off the cutting board, though it’s just a minor shortcoming. You won’t be let down, knowing this knife comes from Henckels.
Choosing a chef’s knife is actually not an easy job. Great knife makes great cooking, great cooking makes great environment to bring people together. I hope that the above review can help you make good choices bringing happy meals to you and your loved ones.