Reviews Of The Best Kitchen Knives Of 2021

Sharp, comfortable, affordability, and a high-quality stainless steel material are the things we looked out for before we picked the Emojoy 15-piece Chef Knife Set as the best kitchen knives.

Interested in knowing which knives to buy? Here are our top picks below.

Table of Contents

Best Kitchen Knives: Our Top Picks

Product

Features

Prices

Best of the best

Emojoy is definitely not a popular brand when it comes to kitchenware but it doesn’t make them any less than the popular brands like Cuisinart and the likes. For this review, we took a look at the Emojoy 15-piece knife set.

The Emojoy 15-piece knife set is definitely aesthetically pleasing. At a glance, you’ll be able to count out the 15 knives in the wooden knife rack with each knife sitting princely in its own compartment.

Talking about the rack, it’s made from wood. The wood seems to be treated and well-polished. And it has an aura of durability. However, this is dependent on how constantly you clean it.

We recommend cleaning the knives with a towel or leaving it to dry on a magnetic rack before placing back into this rack. By doing so, moisture won’t cause dirt to build up on it.

Knives in this set include a chef knife, slicing knife, santoku knife and a bread knife, all measuring 8-inches. Others include the 5-inch utility knife, a 3.5-inch paring knife, a kitchen scissors, as well as six 4.5-inch steak knives.

To keep your knives sharp all the time, Emojoy included a knife sharpener at no extra cost. Very thoughtful of them, isn’t it?

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Editor’s Note:

The Emojoy knife set is made from high quality high-carbon stainless steel material, a clear indication of Emojoy’s desire to retain their market position by using quality materials to make their products.

Emojoy offers this knife set in a two different colors. Our review model was the rose wood colored variant. The other one is beige wood colored.

The knives sport an ergonomically designed handle made from Pakkawood. Pakkawood is a professionally designed high-quality wooden material which is designed to be tough and withstand a lot of strain.

Premium Choice

The J.A Henckels 15 piece knife set is our premium pick for the best kitchen knives. At a glance, the premium stainless steel finishing of the knives make them aesthetically appealing to the eyes.

Henckels offers this 15- piece set in three different colors; black, light brown and dark brown colors. There’s also a 12-piece set for people who want a smaller set of knives.

The Henckels knife set doesn’t make you break the bank as it is only two bottles of bear more expensive than the Emojoy knife set.

With respect to individual knives, this set includes a 3-inch paring knife, 7-inch Santoku knife, a 5-inch utility knife which is serrated as well as an 8-inch bread knife, kitchen shears/scissors, an 8-inch chef knife and six pieces of 4.5-inch steak knife.

Henckels also includes a finely polished wooden knife block in the package. The knives fit into the block with relative ease.

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Editor’s Note:

Let’s talk about the blades. The blades on the J. A Henckels knife is state of the art. It is made from high-quality stainless steel material and certainly looks every bit of it.

With respect to construction, the knives come in a single piece full tang design. The cohesion of the handle and the knives make the knives have good balance. You’ll notice this when you’re cutting heavy materials.

Out of the box, the knife is quite sharp and it will probably stay that way for long. Unfortunately, Henckels didn’t include a knife sharpener with this model. You can always buy one when the need arises.

Editor’s Choice

We’ll start this review by taking a look at the Cuisinart C77SS-15PK knife set.

As the name rightly points out, this knife set is made by the renowned brand, Cuisinart. If you want to know how good the brand is, take a look at our review of the Cuisinart CEC 10 Egg Cooker and the 10-piece cookware set.

The Cuisinart C77SS knives are 15 in number and they are very much affordable. It comes with its own knife rack that is made from wood although the wood appears to be harder than the wood we all know.

It also has some sort of fine polished finishing that will surely seal the longevity of the rack. We certainly cannot say the same for the knife set, the fact that it appears durable notwithstanding.

The knives in this set are all one piece, tip to end of the handle. This implies that the knives have a full tang and will certainly be good for cutting a variety of items.

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Editor’s Note:

Out of the box, the knives are sharp, very sharp. However, it is pertinent to get a sharpener to keep them sharp all the time. On the other hand, the handle of the knife is well built and is comfortable to hold. Need I also mention that the knives are lightweight?

We appreciate the fact that the steak knives are serrated. This should make it much easier to use them. In addition to being serrated, the steak knives have a three and half inch handle for better grip during cutting. No bread knife is included in this set, pretty bad for a good knife set from Cuisinart.

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Best Knife Set With Cutting Board

If you need a knife set that comes with its own mini cutting board, the McCook 16-piece knife set is it. However, if you’re looking for something more professional, you should take a look at the professional knife set below.

The McCook knife set shares similar features with the Henckels and Emojoy knife. How is this possible?

First, it comes with a high-quality knife block for storing your knives. To keep your knife in top shape, they integrated a knife sharpener into the body of the block. This is almost similar to what you have on the Emojoy knife set.

On the other hand, it shares the same premium finishing with the J. A Henckels knife set although we think it shines more than the Henckels, to a large extent, of course.

McCook offers the knife in a multiple color options including a black, candy red, red, beech, etc. to mention a few. You can also choose between three set sizes of 6, 14, and 16 pieces respectively.

For this review, we looked at the 16-piece set.

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Editor’s Note:

We love the fact that this knife set comes with an integrated knife sharpener. It helps to reduce the clustering of the kitchen countertop. As such, we don’t have to deal with finding a storage space for a sharpener nor deal with spending a few extra bucks on the sharpener as well.

The 16 piece set contains the following; 8-inch chef knife, 8-inch bread knife, 8-inch slicing knife and a 3.5-inch paring knife. Others include a 3.25-inch beak parer, a 5-inch serrated utility knife as well as 6 pieces of 4.5-inch steak knives and shearers.

Lots of options, however, we do think that 6 steak knives are an overkill. Handles-wise, the handles on the knives are quite comfortable.

The knife features a full tang as well as a finger guard to ensure maximum protection for your fingers when you are using the knife.

Professional Chef Knife 

The DALSTRONG knife set is a great knife set for professional chefs. If you know one, get them this knife set as a gift this Easter along with some fresh eggs.

DALSTRONG calls this professional knife set the Gladiator Series Colossal Knife set. In as much as the name sounds sweet and top of the range, it doesn’t justify the fact that this knife set costs almost 4 times the cost of our premium pick knife, the Henckels knife set.

The DALSTRONG knife set contains 18 knives made from premium German stainless steel. They include 8-inch chef knife, 6-inch serrated utility knife, 7-inch santoku knife, 9-inch bread knife, 6-inch boning knife, and a 6.5-inch utility knife.

Others include a 9-inch carving/slicing knife, 3.5-inch paring knife, 8.5-inch kiritsuke chef’s knife, 2.75-inch bird’s beak paring knife and 6 straight edge steak knives and a 10-inch honing steel.

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Editor’s Note:

As we mentioned earlier, the knives in this set have premium finishing – DALSTRONG claims that they’re hand polished. We cannot but support their claims given how attractive the knives are.

The knives have full tangs and there’s no telling that they are strong.

Unfortunately, they don’t come with a knife sharpener like the less expensive knife sets we reviewed. It does, however, come with a honing steel.

Worth Owning 

Not everyone needs to buy a high-end knife from a popular brand. If you’re interested in a great knife from a popular brand for a great price, then you should read this review.

We picked the Mercer Culinary M22608 8-inch chef’s knife as the best budget kitchen knife for a handful of reasons.

First, it’s lightweight, literally. Secondly, comes from the stable of a well-known knife brand. And lastly, it is appropriately priced although it’s not the cheapest in its class. We thought about placing quality and brand ahead of price in this case.

Mercer Culinary offers this M22608 chef’s knife in 8 different colors. There’s black, yellow, blue, brown, green, purple, red and white colors. All the colors are on the handles.

With regards to the handles, they are Santoprene handles which are ergonomically designed. They offer good comfort and nice grip. The handles are made from polypropene material which we believe enhances durability.

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Editor’s Note:

Furthermore, the handles are well textured and they have vantage slip resistance finger points that promote strong grips. However, the slip resistance points may not hold well when your fingers are oily.

To ensure safety, the knife is NSF certified. In addition to that, it comes with a protective finger guard. The finger guard protects the fingers when you’re cutting as the blades are fine-sharp.

Let’s not also fail to mention that the blade is made of Japanese steel and it’s very sharp.

Looking for a quality carving knife?

The Mercer Culinary carving knife is definitely worth giving a second look. It’s dubbed the Granton Edge Slicer, thanks to its well defined and extra sharp blade. The blade of the knife is made from Japanese steel and looks premium to both look and touch. Careful when touching so you don’t slice your skin.

Comfort is another important selling point of this carving knife.

The knife comes with an ergonomic handle one with good texture points that aid grip when the hand is wet or oily. However, you need to apply pressure if your hand is very oily.

In addition to that, the knife also comes with a finger guard. The finger guard doesn’t hinder slicing activities in any way.

 It only makes sure your fingers are an inch away from the extra sharp blade.

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Editor’s Note:

The Mercer Culinary carving knife shares some similarities with the Dalstrong carving knife. However, the latter is a tad pricier than the former. On the other hand, it is longer than the Dalstrong knife.

Lengthwise, the Mercer Culinary knife measures 14-inches. Pretty long if you must say. Furthermore, you can get this knife in up to eight different colors.

Available colors include black, blue, brown, and green. Out of the box, this Mercer Culinary carving knife is very sharp. If you’re not careful, you’ll probably receive a hello cut.

We thing Mercer should have included a plastic sleeve with a large, very sharp, inscription on it to warn users.

Best Fillet Knife 

There’s no denying that Mercer Culinary is a brand to reckon with. So far, this review of the best fillet knife brings the number of Mercer Culinary knives we’ve reviewed to 4.

The black fillet knife measures 8 inches and is available in a plethora of color options. Available color options include blue, black, green, yellow, etc. to mention a few.

Based on the design of most fillet knives, the Mercer Culinary fillet knife isn’t an exception. It’s a narrow fillet knife which gets the job done with relative ease.

As expected, it features a Santoprene handle. The handle is made from a mixture of Santoprene and Polypropylene. One thing is certain, the handle is definitely going to last long.

In addition to that, it also comes with its own finger guard. The finger guard somewhat projects outward, providing a place for your index finger to relax as you grip the knife’s handle.

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With respect to the type of steel used, Mercer Culinary used their proprietary Japanese steel to craft the knife. Out of the box, it is as sharp as the carving knife we reviewed above.

Mercer Culinary ensured that they met the necessary quality guidelines thus have an NSF quality certification for this knife as well as all their other knives on this review list.

Expect the knife to be very lightweight as it weighs just about 8 ounces.

Best Bread Knife 

Away from the monopoly of the Mercer Culinary knives, here’s a great bread knife. It’s a 10-inch serrated bread knife made by Saken.

The Saken bread knife is made with premium German HC steel and is designed to be durable. It comes as a single part of a knife set which includes a 3.5 inch paring knife, a 7-inch santoku knife, an 8-inch chef knife, as well as a steak knife set.

Undoubtedly, the Saken bread knife is a must have for kitchens where baking is done frequently. In the course of this review, we were glad when we cut some slices of bread out with it and the bread didn’t crumble nor crush.

It does slice well, thanks to its sharp blades. Out of the box, the knife is sharp. Saken recommends sharpening the knife from time to time to increase the sharpness.

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The Saken bread knife features a full tang which gives the knife a great balance when it’s in use. This is in addition to the nicely constructed handle. Both are joined properly.

To ensure safety of their users from the extra-sharp blades, Saken added a finger guard. The finger guard ensures your fingers are protected when you’re using the knife.

We had just one minor complaint, why didn’t Saken offer the knife in multiple colors like others do?

Kitchen Knives Buying Guide

Buying a kitchen knife isn’t as simple as walking into a supermarket and buying a knife set. Cutting items in the kitchen can be a lot easier and faster if the knife is lightweight, sharp and designed for the purpose.

Imagine cutting meat with a serrated bread knife, you’ll probably spend the whole day on it.

In this section of the article, we’d like to share with you some very important things to know when buying kitchen knives.

The first factor to consider is the purpose of the knife.

Purpose of the Knife

By purpose, we simply refer to the things the knife will be used for cutting. Pizza, bread, cake or meat, which one of these will you use the knife for bearing in mind that there a various kinds of knives.

On that note, le’s take a look at the types of knives we have.

  • Chef Knife:

The chef knife is arguably the most important knife in the kitchen. In fact, it is a must have. It’s the most versatile given its design and functionality. Whether you are cutting vegetables or meat, a chef knife will definitely come in handy.

They’re not expensive, so if you’re looking to buy just one knife, then a chef’s knife is worth looking at.

  • The Serrated Knife:

Serrated knifes are known mostly by their serrated blades. They’re also used frequently for cutting items like bread/baked food and soft vegetables. This is because the serrated blade goes through the food easily when compared to other knives.

  • Paring Knife

The Paring knife is much like the chef’s knife, only that it’s a bit shorter. It comes in handy when you want to cut some items that a chef knife will overdo (if you use a chef knife).

Between the paring knife and the chef’s knife lies the utility knife. It is a go to knife for handling tasks of both knives.

A typical example is if you want to peel items. Using a chef’s knife can be an overkill but a paring knife won’t be an overkill.

  • Carving/Slicing Knife

A carving knife is easily identified by its sharp tip. As the name implies, carving knives are used for carving or slicing food items especially meat. A meat slicer can also do what a carving knife can do.

  • Santoku Knife

The Santoku knife sports almost the same design with the chef knife. However, the Santoku knife has a different blade design. It’s mostly used by professional chefs who know they have need for it.

  • Boning Knife

If you cut through a lot of meat in your kitchen, then a boning knife is a must have. This special type of knife with its indented blade is best suited for cutting meat with bones.

It will come in handy for cutting chicken, turkey or beef. A boning knife is distantly related to a filleting knife.

  • Fillet Knife

As earlier mentioned, a fillet knife is a distant relative of the boning knife. The fillet knife itself is mostly used for cutting fish. When compared to the boning knife, their spine is indented whereas on the boning knife, the blade is indented.

There are other types of knives including the vegetable and meat cleavers as well as the kitchen shears.

Having known these, you can decide to pick out the particular type of knife you want and purchase them individually.

If that doesn’t suit you, you can opt for a knife set.

We reviewed one of the best knife sets in this article. It’s a 15 piece knife set and it is very much affordable.

Apart from knowing the types of knives, there are other things you should know when shopping for kitchen knives.

Cost

It’s no news that popular brands sometimes cost more than their counterparts. If you’re not a fan of brand names, then you may get to save some money.

However, we recommend buying a knife that has strong build quality, is comfortable to use, and well balanced.

If you’re really into saving costs and you want all the knives, a knife set may also be worth looking at.

In all, quality knives don’t cost much nowadays. You can get a good knife for less than the price of a food processor.

Size

Kitchen knives come in different sizes often starting at from about 3 inches up to 15 inches. The task you want to use the knife for can greatly determine the size you end up buying.

Generally, the most popular sizes are the 7, 8, and 10-inches.

Quality

Knife quality is important, so that you don’t end up buying a knife or knife sets every 6 months.

Generally, appliances can easily reflect its build quality. In the same vein, a knife gives away its build quality at a glance. If it’s low quality, you’ll probably know from the way it feels and looks compared to other knives of the same class.

The quality of a knife often lies in how it is made.

Most knives are made using either of the following construction processes; forging and stamping.

  • Stamped Knives

For stamping, knives made using the stamped format are simple pieces of steel that were cut out from a larger sheet and refined. The cutting is done using a machine which stamp-cuts the pieces of steel out of the larger sheet.

Stamped knives tend to be lighter than their counterparts.

  • Forged Knives

Most forged knives are forged out of steel that passed through fire hence the name forged. The knives are heated till they are red hot and malleable.

Then, they are molded into the desired shape. Forged knives tend to be heavier, and in addition, tend to cost more than their stamped counterparts.

Both stamped knives and forged knives are great knives to own. Preference and cost are deciding factors.

Other factors;

Comfort

A knife with a jagged handle will make the hands sore. It’s therefore imperative to buy a knife with a smooth handle that is ergonomically designed and easy to grip.

The knife should also have a great degree of balance with respect to the weight distribution. If the handle is heavier than the body, using the knife will become an arduous task.

Full Tang

The full tang in this case refers to the part of the knife blade that extends into the handle. Some knives have small tangs while the others have full tangs.

Based on experience, knives with full tangs offer more flexibility and cutting comfort, plus the handle stays glued to the knife much longer.

Factory Sharpness

A knife that is sharp straight out of the box will be sharper than one you sharpened by yourself. As a matter of fact, a dull knife won’t be any good to you, it’ll only frustrate you.

Considering the fact that you’re buying online, it’s important to take a look at reviews of the knife. Find out what people are saying about the sharpness of the knife. Fortunately, we’ve done that in this review and we ended up selecting the finest knives.

Knife Material

As we mentioned earlier, knives are made from steel mostly. There are two most commonly used steel materials used for making knives; the carbon steel and the stainless steel knives.

Carbon steel knives tend to be stronger and sturdier but they lack in durability except with constant maintenance. The opposite is what is obtainable with stainless steel knives.

Storage

Storage of knives is important or you risk it getting blunt or hurting someone especially children. Hence, we advise getting a storage rack for your knife.

Fortunately, some of the best kitchen knives come with their own storage rack. However, if you don’t want to buy a knife set, then a magnetic knife rack is definitely worth considering.

Caring For Your Knife: A Few Things You Should Do

Clean after each use

Clean your knives and dry them properly after each use. This helps keep them looking clean and reduces the chances of grime and dirt building up on the blade or on the holster. In turn, the knife stays sharp for a little longer before needing the touch of a sharpener.

Store in a knife rack

As earlier mentioned, knife storage is important. If the knife keeps falling off the countertop, the blades may bend or the handles will break. Get a standard knife rack or a magnetic knife rack for your knives.

Conclusion

Sharp lightweight knives make cooking a tad faster as the knives cut through your food items with ease. Looking to save money, then consider buying a knife set.

Check properly to know the knives that are in the knife set.

Colin Matthews

Colin is a passionate chef by trade and a kitchen nerd on the side. Growing up in the kitchen, Colin has always had a passion for learning the absolute best way to cook a dish. He quickly realized most kitchens have duplicate cookware and small appliances and had to decide which ones were going to be the “keepers” – causing him to take a closer look at all his products.

As it turns out, small differences make a big impact on the experience. Whether it’s how hard you have to press a microwave button, to how long a cast iron skillet stays warm after you turn off the heat, these little difference changed everything.