Your Buyer Guide for Choosing the Best Kitchen Knives

Mark Preston

Quality kitchen knives that help you cut with ease and precision are some of the most important kitchen tools you should equip yourself with. Poor-quality knives, on the other hand, make cutting, and the overall cooking process more difficult and longer, which can turn into a frustrating experience. Avoid this by buying the best kitchen knives online. Here is a guide to help you find high-quality long-lasting knives.

What to Consider Before Buying Kitchen Knives

Type

Essentially, there are two main types of knives you need in your cutlery arsenal

  • A bread knife
  • A chef’s knife

You should be able to find the purpose clearly specified in each knife’s title and description if you shop online.

A chef’s knife is an all-purpose knife with a straight edge you can use to cut any type of ingredient from meat to veggies. It usually has an 8-inch length, but some models can be longer (up to 14 inches). A bread knife is useful for cutting bread easier thanks to the blade serrations that prevent the bread from crushing. The typical length of this knife is 10 inches.

Besides these two types of knives, there are also other knife styles you might need for specific purposes. For example, pairing knives are smaller (3-4 inches). You can use them to peel fruit or slice vegetables easier thanks to their small size. Table knives, also known as butter knives, have rounded blades and are dull. They’re not typically used for cooking, but while eating.

Cleavers are large and have a rectangular blade. They’re useful for cutting meat, bones, or vegetables that are difficult to cut with a chef knife. Boning or butcher knives are other types of knives you need if you cook meat.

Single Knife vs. Knives Set

If you want a single knife to complete or complement your existing set, you need to look for one that’s suited for your purpose. If you want a whole set of knives, you should take into account several other aspects such as the price range and the number of knives you get. If you don’t cook often, you might be better off with a generic chef’s knife and a bread knife instead of getting a whole set.

Features and Benefits You Should Evaluate

Size

If you’re looking for an all-purpose chef’s knife, the size can vary. You will notice that most knives are between 6 and 10 inches long. Choose one you find easier to manage. Usually, the shorter, the easier it is to manage. However, if you often need to slice through a large fruit or veggie, or cut meat, you might want to consider a longer knife that can do the job easier, with fewer moves. If you want a knife you can use for anything, pick one that has an average length of 8 inches.

Handle

The way you manage the knife largely depends on the handle. If the handle has a good grip and it fits easily in your hand, you have more control and you can use it with more precision. If the handle is too large for your hand or difficult to grab, you’ll find it harder to cut foods with it.

Except for its size, the handle’s material is another key aspect to weigh. Wood is one of the traditional and most popular handle materials. It comes in a variety of choices, and it is easy to shape to offer a good grip. Wood is also comfortable to manage. However, it can be more difficult to clean and doesn’t offer antibacterial properties.

Synthetic handles, on the other hand, have antibacterial properties. These come in different materials, including polypropylene, plastics, or fibrox. These handles are easier to clean, but they can crack after a while if you often hold them next to heat sources.

Stainless steel is another option, and a practical one because it has great longevity, it is antibacterial, and easy to clean.

Blade Type

The blade type establishes what you can do with your knife. If you need a bread knife, you will have to pick one with a serrated blade. However, keep in mind that there are limited purposes for these knives outside bread-slicing. For example, you can use them to cut some vegetables such as tomatoes. Knives with a straight blade, on the other hand, can be used for any type of food. If necessary, you can also use them to cut bread.

Blade Material

The handle’s material matters, but so does the blade. There are different options to consider when it comes to this and the advantages each material brings.

Stainless steel is one of the most popular choices. These blades are highly resistant because of the chromium in this material. Besides resistance, another main benefit of a stainless-steel blade is its anti-corrosive capacity. This makes the blade is less likely to rust, which also enhances its longevity. Another option is carbon steel. These blades contain less chromium and are more affordable than stainless steel. A disadvantage though is that they get stained due to oxidation.

Ceramic blades are also popular and offer different benefits. First of all, these thin blades are very sharp and can cut veggies and fruits quite well. They do not rust and they aren’t prone to staining either. Knives with ceramic blades are durable and weigh less than stainless steel or carbon steel models.

Other Considerations

Because it’s not possible to test knives before buying them when you shop online, choose safe options. This means products that have a clear and reasonable return policy. You should be able to return the product within 30 days and get a refund if you’re not satisfied. Some manufacturers offer an extended return period of 60 days.

Moreover, to make sure the brand you choose is a trusted and reliable one, do some research before buying your next knife or knife set. Read product comparisons to see if it ranks among the best and check out customer reviews, both positive and negative.