Best Kitchen Knife Set Reviews_ The Best Chef Cutlery

Best Kitchen Knife Set Reviews: The Best Chef Cutlery

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As you enter the kitchen, the first thing you probably reach for is a knife. You need a decent set for a multitude of tasks including whipping up a meal, be it breakfast, lunch or dinner.

They are probably the most useful things to have around when you’re getting ready to cook. No wonder there’s such a large variety of chef knives available on the market from standard European styles, to the many different types of blades available from around the world such as the very useful, but delicate Chinese meat cleaver.

Most kitchen knives come in a compact, handy set, making any kitchen job a breeze and with a cutlery set, you can meet all your cooking requirements in one go.

The bets set should have all kinds of knives packed in one convenient container. From cutting to chopping, slicing to grooving, peeling to paring, there’s a knife for every need. So the best knives set would have all the options that’ll equip you to handle anything!

But what is a good kitchen knife set?

Depending on the need, you can pick out the one best suited for that particular task especially as we are now in a brand new year!

Title
Recommended
Mercer Culinary Genesis 6-Piece Forged Knife Block Set, Tempered Glass Block
Zwilling J.A. Henckels 30768-000 Twin Signature Knife Block Set, 11 Piece, Black
Cuisinart C77SS-15PK 15-Piece Stainless Steel Hollow Handle Block Set
AmazonBasics Premium 18-Piece Kitchen Knife Block Set
Chicago Cutlery Cutlery Fusion 18pc Block Set, 18 Pieces, Stainless Steel
Preview
Mercer Culinary Genesis 6-Piece Forged Knife Block Set, Tempered Glass Block
Zwilling J.A. Henckels 30768-000 Twin Signature Knife Block Set, 11 Piece, Black
Cuisinart C77SS-15PK 15-Piece Stainless Steel Hollow Handle Block Set
AmazonBasics Premium 18-Piece Kitchen Knife Block Set
Chicago Cutlery Cutlery Fusion 18pc Block Set, 18 Pieces, Stainless Steel
Best for
Most Precision & Durability
Greatest Variety & Quality
Most Popular
Covers all the bases
All Around Champion
Prime
-
-
Price
$178.73
$269.95
$79.99
$37.66
$230.99
Recommended
Title
Mercer Culinary Genesis 6-Piece Forged Knife Block Set, Tempered Glass Block
Preview
Mercer Culinary Genesis 6-Piece Forged Knife Block Set, Tempered Glass Block
Best for
Most Precision & Durability
Prime
-
Price
$178.73
Title
Zwilling J.A. Henckels 30768-000 Twin Signature Knife Block Set, 11 Piece, Black
Preview
Zwilling J.A. Henckels 30768-000 Twin Signature Knife Block Set, 11 Piece, Black
Best for
Greatest Variety & Quality
Prime
Price
$269.95
Title
Cuisinart C77SS-15PK 15-Piece Stainless Steel Hollow Handle Block Set
Preview
Cuisinart C77SS-15PK 15-Piece Stainless Steel Hollow Handle Block Set
Best for
Most Popular
Prime
Price
$79.99
Title
AmazonBasics Premium 18-Piece Kitchen Knife Block Set
Preview
AmazonBasics Premium 18-Piece Kitchen Knife Block Set
Best for
Covers all the bases
Prime
Price
$37.66
Title
Chicago Cutlery Cutlery Fusion 18pc Block Set, 18 Pieces, Stainless Steel
Preview
Chicago Cutlery Cutlery Fusion 18pc Block Set, 18 Pieces, Stainless Steel
Best for
All Around Champion
Prime
-
Price
$230.99

Last update on 2020-07-12 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Table of Contents

What Makes These Products So Good?

What makes a good knife set? What kinds of things should you look for when deciding to buy?

These are great questions and I know that unless you know exactly what brand you are looking for; it can be a bit of a minefield of information to wrap your head around.

Have a read of the basics below to get an idea, and then you can see the full description of each product in this list.

The cutting edge

This is the strongest type of blade that you can buy and means that you are essentially holding on the actual metal, (with handles added for comfort).

The term full tang basically means that it is one solid piece and the 2 handle pieces are pinned on to the blade, one on each side.

This is in comparison with half tang knives, which go the length of the handle, but only half the width of it.

Source

What Cooking Knives Should be in a Kitchen Knife Set?

Bear in mind that this list is no exhaustive, but I just want to let you know which knives you should have at a bare minimum.

  • Paring Knife
  • Chef’s Knife
  • Bread Knife
  • 10-inch Slicing Knife

What Is A Chef Knife Used For In The Kitchen?

A good knife is every cook’s reliable tool.

It helps in preparing food ingredients through cutting, slicing, mincing and more.

One of the most popular and reliable types of knife in the world are chef’s knives. Originally, a chef’s knife is designed to cut and disjoint large cuts of beef.

I recently wrote a post about the different types of Japanese chefs knives and when researching that topic, I found out that they have a very similar knife to the traditional Western chef’s knife called the gyuto knife.

In fact, I will be writing an article about gyuto vs chef knife very soon so keep your eyes peeled!

Today, they’re primarily designed to be a general utility knife for most western cooks and households.

What Does Full Tang Mean?

This is the strongest type of blade that you can buy and means that you are essentially holding on the actual metal, (with handles added for comfort).

The term full tang basically means that it is one solid piece and the 2 handle pieces are pinned on to the blade, one on each side.

This is in comparison with half tang knives, which go the length of the handle, but only half the width of it.

Source

Diversity in material

The variety in knives extends to the materials used too.

Knives may be made from anything ranging from carbon steel and stainless steel to titanium and high carbon stainless steel. You may also come across laminated, ceramic and plastic knives in the different options on this list.

Ideally, your kitchen set should have many different varieties to help you meet all your kitchen needs. However, despite the multitude of functional benefits, you wouldn’t want to spend a fortune on buying a set.

Best Kitchen Knives Under $500

Mercer Culinary Genesis

Mercer Culinary Genesis 6-Piece Forged Knife Block Set, Tempered Glass Block
  • Ergonomic Santoprene handle offers superior comfort and a non-slip grip, even with wet hands. Will not break down from exposure to kitchen oils and is able to withstand hot and cold temperatures
  • High carbon, no-stain German X50 Cr Mo V15 cutlery steel resists rust, corrosion, and discoloration
  • Precision forged construction for better strength and durability with a full tang that runs the entire length of the handle for superior balance
  • Taper-ground edge allows for added stability, easy honing, long lasting sharpness, and increased efficiency when cutting and chopping
  • Limited Lifetime Warranty

Last update on 2020-07-12 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Its tempered glass block and some other unique features compensate for the fact that the Mercer has only six pieces.

The superior quality and performance standards of this set come from the high carbon, no-stain German X50 Cr Mo V15 cutlery steel used, which is resistant to rust, corrosion and discoloration.

Long-lasting sharpness is assured.

The lifetime warranty and the NFS certification attached to this set make it an excellent asset for any professional or ametuer chef. The set includes:

  • 3-1/2” paring
  • 5” utility
  • 8 ”chef’s,
  • 8” bread
  • 6”boning knives

The knives are made in Taiwan using European components and technology.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Handle is high quality ergonomic Santoprene, providing excellent comfort
  • Non-slip grip of the handle ensures it doesn’t slip even while using with wet hands
  • Handle can withstand hot and cold temperatures, which prevents it from breaking due to exposure to kitchen oils
  • Knives are precision-forged, providing immense strength and durability
  • Superior balance as the full tang runs through the handle length
  • Edges are taper-ground, thus enhancing the stability and performance of the knives
  • Block is designed to stand stable and upright on the kitchen counter

Cons

  • Blocks need more height as knives stand upright
  • Knives become dull and edges don’t remain sharp after some time
  • Knives tend to bend with use
  • Staining might spoil the knives within a few months of use

Summary

You’ll love the feel of the comfortable and efficient Mercer knives; with their excellent finish and cutting edge efficiency matching professional levels.

Easy to use and maintain, they stay sharp longer, requiring less work and stress. The best part is probably the superior grip which allows exceptional control when using with dry or wet hands.

You can see our full Mercer Culinary Genesis​ review here.

Chicago Cutlery

Chicago Cutlery Cutlery Fusion 18pc Block Set, 18 Pieces, Stainless Steel
  • 3.25" parer, 3" peeler, 5" utility, 8 4.25" steak knives, 7.75" chef, 8" slicer, 7.75" bread, 5" partoku, 7" santoku, 8" stainless sharpening steel
  • Professional high carbon stainless steel forged blades with black comfort grip poly handles
  • Exclusive taper grind edge technology provides optimum sharpness for precise cutting and is easy to re sharpen
  • High carbon stainless steel creates a stronger, harder blade resisting stains, rust and pitting
  • Care Instructions: Do not put knives in the dishwasher it may cause nicks on the blade edges; Do not cut through bone with knives or use knives to poke, pry or separate frozen foods; Handle material: Metal/rubber

Last update on 2020-07-12 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This is a set of top quality professional high-carbon stainless steel kitchen blades with forged blades.

The sharpness of the blade, with its Taper Grind edge, is perfect for precise cutting. The steel quality ensures strength and keeps the knives rust-free. The poly handles are built for a comfortable grip. The set contains:

  • 3.25 ″ trim
  • 3″ peeler
  • 5″ utility
  • 8 – 4.25″ steak knives
  • 7.75″ chef
  • 8″ slicer
  • 7.75″ bread
  • 5 ″ partoku
  • 7″ Santoku
  • 8″ stainless sharpening steel

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Designed for ease of precise cutting and re-sharpening
  • Blade is hard and resistant to stains and rust
  • Sleek design and style, with stainless steel plate on handles and stained pine wood block
  • Blades are strong, yet not too heavy
  • High level of balance and control
  • Comes with full life-time warranty

Cons

  • Set looks loose and untidy as the knives do not line up properly in the slots
  • Needs to be hand-washed and dried immediately after use to prevent rusting
  • Steak knives are poor quality and not sturdy
  • Does not include scissors

Summary

Built for precision-led performance, this 18 piece set is ideal for skillful cutting, chopping, slicing, etc. as part of everyday cooking.

The assortment of knives contained in the package is suitable for all kinds of food preparation. With the Chicago knife set, you’ll get the feel and experience of a professional chef with total confidence in cooking a range of dishes.

It’s definitely a deal at the price it comes for.

Amazon Basics

Sale
AmazonBasics Premium 18-Piece Kitchen Knife Block Set
  • Full tang triple-riveted, ergonomic handle ensures comfort and control
  • High quality stainless-steel with precision-honed blade for lasting sharpness
  • Hardwood block included to store and protect knife set
  • Hand wash only

Last update on 2020-07-12 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

With finely sharpened edges, each of the 18 pieces in this set is designed for comfort and excellent use.

The blades are precision-formed and made of high-quality stainless steel. They are built for balanced and controlled use, making them effective tools for any kitchen.

The pieces in this set include:

  • 8” chef
  • 7” Santoku
  • 8” slicing
  • 8” bread
  • 5.5” utility
  • 6” boning3.5” paring
  • (8x) 4.5” steak knives
  • 8” kitchen shears
  • 8” sharpener
  • wood block

The knives however, need careful maintenance. They are hand wash only. But if you read my other reviews about certain cookware pieces, you will understand that The Kitchen Guy always recommends hand washing when you can do.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Knives are weighted to ensure effective use, with complete control and balance
  • Handles are triple-riveted and ergonomic, enabling a comfortable, secure grip
  • Set has a sharpener to keep blades well sharpened at all times
  • All-purpose chef’s knife has a curved blade for chopping with a rocking motion

Cons

  • Made in China, hence standards don’t match those of some other sets
  • Knives aren’t very sharp
  • Scissors tend to come apart during use
  • Block is poor quality
  • Finish of grips/handles is not good

Summary

With the Amazon Basics, you’ll get just about everything you need for cooking – from dicing and chopping to slicing and more.

Their cutting edge performance will leave you amazed and inspired to experiment with all kinds of cooking for any number of people.

It’s quite a bargain too!

Cuisinart

Cuisinart C77SS-15PK 15-Piece Stainless Steel Hollow Handle Block Set
  • Superior high carbon stainless steel blades for precision and accuracy
  • Strong, durable bolster for perfect stability and control. Lightweight knives that slice, carve, and chop
  • Ergonomically designed stainless steel handle provides comfort
  • Easy to clean and precision-tapered ground blades that narrow gradually to an extremely sharp, fine edge
  • Lifetime Warranty.Dishwasher Safe

Last update on 2020-07-11 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Cuisinart knife set is quite decent quality.

What you get with this set is:

  • 8″ chef’s blade
  • 8″ slicing knife
  • 7″ Santoku knife
  • 5.5″ serrated utility knife
  • 3.5″ paring knife
  • 3.5″ bird’s beak paring knife
  • 8″ sharpening steel
  • All-purpose household shears
  • A block to hold them all

The high-carbon stainless steel blades give precision and accuracy. Their unique design makes them aesthetically appealing.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Bolster is strong and durable, thereby ensuring total control and stability
  • Handles are ergonomically designed, for complete comfort
  • Knives are extremely easy to clean and maintain
  • Lifetime warranty gives right to replace in case of a problem
  • Block is extremely good quality wood

Cons

  • Steak knives have straight edge and aren’t serrated
  • Block slots are not cut properly
  • Blades on large knives are thinned out in some places
  • Handle is not heavy enough for controlled chopping
  • Rusting problem despite hand washing and immediate drying

Summary

You can try these out if you’re looking for something good-looking and strong. Fine chopping and fine cutting may not be the best features of these knives, but they’re sturdily built and ensure accuracy and precision.

 

J.A. Henckels

Zwilling J.A. Henckels 30768-000 Twin Signature Knife Block Set, 11 Piece, Black
  • Includes 2.75 inches Bird's beak peeling
  • 4 inches parer
  • 4.5 inches vegetable utility
  • 5 inches serrated utility
  • 6 inches utility

Last update on 2020-07-11 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This really premium kitchen knife knife set, includes:

  • Includes 2.75 inches
  • Bird’s beak peeling
  • 4 inches parer
  • 4.5 inches vegetable utility
  • 5 inches serrated utility
  • 6 inches utility
  • 7 inches HE Santoku
  • 8 inches chef
  • 8 inches bread
  • Kitchen shears
  • 9 inches sharpening steel

A great feature of these knives is that the full tang extends through their length, ensuring solidity and balance. The brand quality is manifest in every component of the set, which has a metal end cap displaying the JA Henckels International logo.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Handles are crafted for comfort and control with their ergonomic and triple-rivet features
  • Precise cutting, slicing and peeling due to the satin-finish stainless steel blades
  • Edges are sharp and built to last long, with easy care and maintenance
  • Balanced weight ensures good control

Cons

  • Blades are actually made in China; hence quality is not that of the original brand
  • Blades lack sharpness needed for some kitchen jobs
  • Grip of paring knife feels too big
  • Slots aren’t cut properly on block

Summary

The quality may not be really Henckels standard, but the set is nevertheless an excellent buy for anyone wanting to do some professional cooking at home.

Ease and comfort are assured and they are weighted for fantastic balance. The ergonomic design also ensures that using the knives doesn’t come with any stress.

You can see our full J.A. Henckels review here.

Conclusion

Though these chefs knives all meet the threshold for this article; there’s a diverse price range to choose from. How much you want or need to spend on these pretty essential items will depend on what kind of cooking you typically do.

For the more professionally inclined, the Mercer and the Henckels seem to be a better bet. The Cuisinart is a set of solid knives that you may like if you’re looking for total control and stability.

Or you could opt for the Amazon Basics weighted knives that deliver efficiency with balance. It’s a great value for its price though not really top end.

The Chicago set is your kind of knife set if you want ease of precise cutting and re-sharpening.