Top 10 Best Chef Knives 2021 [Reviews & Buying Guide]

The most essential kitchen tool you have, the chef’s knives, is undoubtedly the best. However, It can be difficult to find the right knife for you. We researched and tried to find the best chef knives for home cooks at affordable prices. There were 10 options available from top brands. Continue reading to find out which chef’s knives are the best in each category. 

Best Kitchen Knife Brands

1. Victorinox

Victorinox Swiss Army produces a lot of stuff, including a mountain of pocket and utility knives, fragrances and watches, travel gear, luggage, and kitchen knives. Its kitchen knives are a great combination of simple design choices (the handles don’t seem too aggressive on the ergonomics side), solid materials, and a level of mass availability that is unmatched by other knife companies.

Although it’s most well-known for its Fibrox line of knives, which is incredibly affordable, its premium rosewood-handled blades, as well as the Grand Maitre line, are also worth a look.

2. Wusthof

Wusthof’s 8-inch chef knife is the most popular premium knife recommendation on the internet. The rest of the Wusthof kitchen knives are also highly recommended. The German company is a reliable maker of high-quality knives at all price points. Wusthof is the best place to look if you are looking for a German-style knife.

Best Chef Knives

3. Global

Global’s kitchen knives were awarded the prestigious Good Design Award (in 1990) and the rare Good Design Long Life Award (in 2009). These knives are unusual but quite amazing. Cromova 18 steel is used to make the knives. This semi-mysterious alloy of chromium-molybdenum, vanadium and chromium comes from Global’s parent company Yoshikin.

It is solid, hardwearing, and edge-holding stainless steel. It feels like a golf ball’s handle and is very comfortable in the hand. Global’s greatest attribute is its maneuverability. The knives are extremely light and balanced.

4. Mac

Mac knives are highly recommended by many — check out Wirecutter and Epicurious, Buzzfeed -as a great entry point to knives that won’t chip or widdle away. We’ve tested a variety of Mac knives and recommend that you steer clear of the sub-$100 models. There is better value elsewhere. The company makes good use of steel and has more affordable bolster and handle designs than other companies in its price range.

5. Zwilling J.A. Henckels International

The J.A. Zwilling Group is the largest cutlery manufacturer in the world. Its knives are solid and durable, with classic designs, wide availability, and a long history. Henckels International is among the finest you can purchase. Period. You can also get the company’s goods for a fraction of the price if you are patient.

Best Chef’s Knives

1. Victorinox Fibrox Pro Chef’s Knife

Victorinox’s 8-inch is a good chef knife. This chef’s knives can handle onions, tomatoes, and breaking down chickens just as well. They are available in most department stores’ home goods sections. Because of its price, durability, and extremely sanitary (and comfy) handle material, this knife is a popular choice in commercial kitchens.

Victorinox Fibrox Pro Chef's Knife, 8-Inch Chef's
$41.44
$39.28
Amazon.com
as of September 23, 2022 3:51 am

Pros

  • Sharp outside the box
  • Comfortable handle
  • Great customer service

Cons

  • Blade dulls over time; requires frequent honing
  • It looks and works like a production blade, but it is very similar to production knives

2. Mac Knife Professional 8 Inch Hollow Edge Cook’s Knife

The blade is made from high-carbon stainless steel and is rust- and waterproof. However, as with any chef’s knife, it’s best not to put it in the dishwasher. Because of the higher carbon content, small rust spots can occur if the knife is not washed and dried immediately after use.

However, unlike true carbon steel knives, acidic items such as lemons and limes won’t cause permanent staining. This knife is our top recommendation for higher-end knives after more than one year of use. Mac offers a 25-year warranty against defects in material and construction.

Mac Knife Professional 8 Inch Hollow Edge Chef Knife
$143.50
Amazon.com
as of September 23, 2022 3:51 am

Pros

  • Balance and weight are perfect
  • Sharp right out of the box, and easier to sharpen than most stainless steel blades

Cons

  • The blade may have a few nicks; it could not be used to help with vegetable splitting.
  • This knife has a higher carbon content than other knives at this level. If not dried promptly after washing, it can rust.

3. Global 8″ Chef’s Knife

Global’s kitchen knives can be quite bizarre. It is Japanese in design (the blade is extremely thin and light) and anti-Japanese in construction (the whole thing is not pushed towards the cutting end, and most Japanese-style knives have a wooden handle). It has all the slicing qualities you would expect from a Japanese knife but in a more sturdy, familiar package. Its stainless steel composition resists stains and corrosion and stays sharp when in use.

Global 8" Chef's Knife
$159.00
$92.95
Amazon.com
as of September 23, 2022 3:51 am

Pros

  • Almost indestructible
  • Extremely thin and light
  • Sale items are often available

Cons

  • This one-piece, all-metal design is more innovative than it is useful

4. Mercer Culinary M22608 Millennia 8 Inch Chef’s Knife

The Mercer Culinary Millennia 8 inch chef’s knife was my biggest surprise. The knife is not as strong as the Wusthof or Zwilling blades, which have a long-lasting full-tang design. The knife’s metal travels from the tip to the handle in one piece.

The handle design is great for teaching beginners how to use a chef’s knife. It guides your thumb and index finger towards the base of each blade.  Although the Mercer is light and compact, it offers the same versatility as a Wusthof but with a shorter life span.

Mercer Culinary M22608 Millennia 8-Inch Chef's Knife, Black
$24.95
$22.00
Amazon.com
as of September 23, 2022 3:51 am

Pros

  • Durable, but not too heavy
  • For effortless cutting, super sharp

Cons

  • Not mentioned

5. Kiwi Brand Stainless Steel 8-inch Thai Chef’s Knife No. 21

Kiwi knives are a very popular choice. The blades are extremely cheap and very high quality. However, if you sharpen your Kiwi regularly, it will perform as well as knives that cost hundreds of dollars. These knives will work if you do the hard work. You can purchase a set ( on Amazon) which includes a small knife that I use for cutting herbs. You can save money by investing it in sharpening stones. This will ensure that you have knives that last a lifetime.

Kiwi Brand Stainless Steel 8 inch Thai Chef's Knife No. 21
$9.93
Amazon.com
as of September 23, 2022 3:51 am

Pros

  • Cheap Price

Cons

  • Not enough information

6. WUSTHOF Classic 8-Inch Chef’s Knife

Japanese knives are my favorite. This knife is easier to sharpen than other stainless blades that I have tested. The Wusthof also holds its edge well for a long period of time. You only need to do a few quick swiping of the honing iron to improve the edge before you use it. Although the Wusthof is a heavier, larger knife, it’s still very comfortable to hold, and can handle almost anything.

WÜSTHOF Classic 8 Inch Chef’s Knife,Black,8-Inch
$170.00
Amazon.com
as of September 23, 2022 3:51 am

Pros

  • Very comfortable to use
  • Look great

Cons

  • Not enough information

7. J.A. Henckels International Classic Chef Knife

This is a great all-purpose tool, which can be used to slicing parsley, deboning chickens, and even dicing them.

J.A. Henckels International Classic Chef Knife, 8 Inch Chef Knife, Kitchen Knife, Professional Chef Knife, Black
$116.00
$64.95
Amazon.com
as of September 23, 2022 3:51 am

Pros

  • Budget-friendly
  • Versatile; excels across tasks

Cons

  • Not enough information

8. Tojiro DP Gyutou – 8.2

Tojiro’s DP Gyutou is a strong performer at a great value. It holds an edge almost as well as blades twice the price and has a great, solid feel in your hand. It can do precise, very thin slicing which I would not normally be able to achieve with a carbon steel blade. This blade is quite easy to use, but the handle height is a bit low. My hands were firmly against the cutting board several times. You might be better off using something else if you have large hands.

Tojiro DP Gyutou - 8.2" (21cm)
$120.00
$99.95
Amazon.com
as of September 23, 2022 3:51 am

Pros

  • Look Great

Cons

  • Not enough information

9. Shun Classic 7″ Hollow-Ground Santoku All-Purpose Kitchen Knife

The Shun is a Japanese Damascus Steel blade. The indentation just above the cutting edge reduces friction and prevents food from sticking to the blade as it cuts. Despite holding its edge well, the Shun was more difficult to sharpen. To make it razor-sharp, you’ll need to use high-quality stones or hand it to a professional.

Damascus coating is a Damascus-steel coating that gives knives made from the material a distinctive ripple pattern. It has a reputation of being hard to maintain, but it’s not more difficult than carbon steel. This is around Ho handle that’s notched to accommodate right-handers. Although the Shun knife is of high quality, it is also often on sale for less than $120.

Shun Classic 7” Hollow-Ground Santoku All-Purpose Kitchen Knife; VG-MAX Blade Steel and Ebony PakkaWood Handle; Hollow-Ground Indentations for Reduced Friction and Smoother Cuts; Handcrafted in Japan
$169.95
Amazon.com
as of September 23, 2022 3:51 am

Pros

  • Beautiful Damascus blade with Pakkawood handle
  • Hard steel

Cons

  • Use only on dense, hard foods such as block chocolate and autumn squash

10. Zwilling J.A. Henckels Professional S, Chef Knife

Zwilling J.A. Henckels is a world-famous knife maker and has been in existence since the 1700s. Henckels International produces at least 24 lines of knives, so it is important to know which model you are purchasing.

Henckels Professional S, one of their top-tier products, is made in Solingen (Germany), where their core factories can be found. Henckels has factories in Spain, Japan, and, as a recent development, Japan. They produce their latest creations in Japan, knives designed and made by Bob Kramer, an American bladesmith who has set the standard for kitchen-knife excellence.

The Professional S is made from one piece of steel. It has a bolster and full-tang handles, as well as a three-rivet handle. The handle is made to feel and look like wood but it is not. Wood handles are not the norm, although they are making a comeback! Most manufacturers believe that customers prefer synthetic materials because they are more durable.

Zwilling  J.A. Henckels Professional S, Chef Knife, Kitchen Knife, German Knife, 8 Inch, Stainless Steel, Black
$116.57
$97.85
Amazon.com
as of September 23, 2022 3:51 am

Pros

  • Traditional design and feel
  • Strong, durable steel that can withstand tough foods and is hard to crack, chip, or break

Cons

  • Sharpening steel that is softer requires more frequent sharpening

Most Frequently Asked Questions

1. What Is The Difference Between A Japanese And German Chef’s Knives?

German chef knives have a round belly, which makes it ideal for cutting with a rocking method. Japanese knives have a straight edge that suits best up-and-down slicing.

German and Western chef knives tend to have thicker blades than Japanese knives. This makes them heavier. Although thinner knives aren’t as good at cutting through bone or tough material, they are better for fine slicing. The lightness of your knife can prove to be an advantage if you intend on using it a lot.

2. What Are You Using A Chef’s Knives For?

The most versatile kitchen knife, a chef’s knife, is what you need. A chef’s knife can be used to cut meat, fish, vegetables, fruits, and nuts.

A chef’s knife’s broad blade can be used to smash garlic and bruise lemongrass. You can also use the backside of a chef’s knife to gather scraps from your cutting board. Doing so with your sharp side will dull your blade.

3. How Do You Sharpen Your Chef’s Knife The Best?

You want to ensure that your chef’s knife lasts as long as possible. A knife sharpener is a worthwhile investment. A sharp knife edge will prevent you from tearing or damaging the food that you have prepared so carefully.

4. What Is The Difference Between Expensive And Cheap Knives? 

Prices for knives can range from extremely cheap to very expensive. It all comes down to the construction of the knife, such as if it has been forged or stamped and what materials it is made from. A cheap knife can be a good place to start if you are a novice home cook. 

However, a better blade will make it easier to put together your meals. It’s worthwhile to invest in a quality knife if you are already proficient at using a kitchen knife. However, professional chefs often use dirt-cheap knives. You can use cheap knives or more expensive knives to accomplish the same task. The important thing is to focus on quality.

Conclusion

A chef’s knife is an essential item in every kitchen. It makes your chopping and preparing delicious dishes easier and more beautiful. Hopefully, after reading this article, you will be able to choose for yourself the best chef’s knife.

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