Best Buy Knife Set
We performed an exhaustive test of 8 different knife sets and in the end, our testing confirmed that you are much better off shopping for knives à la carte; that way, you get only what you really need. We went back through tesitngs we've performed over the years and compiled this list of our favorite inexpensive knives to round out a set of six essential knives that fit nicely insid... read more
best buy knife set
The good-looking, high-quality set showed no signs of wear after testing and cleaning. That said, testers found that performance varied on an ingredient by ingredient basis; the carving knife sliced ham precisely but was met with resistance when taking on chicken, and the utility knife faltered with mushrooms but was efficient on lettuce. Most impressive? The santoku knife which made light work of every task we used it for.
Our experts found this set a joy to use. Blades sliced with ease, requiring very little effort when prepping ingredients. With excellent weight distribution, the handles were also noticeably pleasant to use, particularly on the utility knife and the vegetable chopping knife (which incidentally scored perfect marks on our cabbage, carrot and onion tests, too).
Hannah is our senior homes writer, specialising in reviewing the latest kitchen appliances, cleaning products, mattresses and bedding, and crafting equipment. Hannah has written about hundreds of products, from air fryers to smoothie makers to pillows, and is committed to finding the most reliable and best value for money buys.
Sometimes you want to have something whether you need it or not, and we get that. A block knife set looks good on the counter, and it's great fun to have a few different knives on hand in case you've got a helper prepping onions, say, or you've just used one to slice chicken and now you want to chop veggies.
For that, we like the Henckels 14-piece Self-Sharpening Knife Set with Block. It's priced affordably, with stylish, comfortable handles, and each of the knife holders contains the same kind of built-in sharpener that our first recommendation did, meaning that each time you remove one to use it, it'll be sharpened again.
If you've done any searching for cookware online you may have seen (more than) a few different online-only companies, such as Made-In, Great Jones, or Misen, selling stylish cookware directly through their site (meaning you can't pick it up at Target). If this appeals to you, we recommend taking a look at Misen's Essentials Knife Set. It's a great only-the-necessaries collection of quality cutting utensils that feel good in the hand and should offer many years of use. Don't forget to also purchase a good knife sharpener, though!
If you're looking to give a gift to a new homeowner, newlywed, or home cook that's just upgraded their kitchen space, and want to hit that sweet spot between splurgy and actually useful, consider this simple high-end knife sit. The weighty tools feel good in the hand, and stick to the most useful knives in the block. The self-sharpening block will keep them gliding through peppers and peaches with ease, and the high-quality name (and Williams Sonoma packaging) will have them saying "Oooh, you shouldn't have!"
We tested a lot of Japanese knives and knife sets for this article and listed our favorites. We also made sure that every set listed is made in Japan. If you are a serious cook or even a chef who is looking for a good Japanese cooking knife or set on a bit of a budget this post should be helpful.
We tried to include Japanese knife sets that will work for almost any budget from affordable to high end. Many of Japanese Cutlery brands we recommend here like Shun and Global are household names, because they deliver amazing performance. However, we added some lesser known brands to this article to help ensure you make an informed decision when choosing a Japanese Knife Set.
A lot people believe that good Japanese Chef knives or full knife sets are really expensive, but there are some excellent mid range knives from companies like Yaxell and Tojiro that deliver great value in 2023. If you are looking to get started with Japanese cutlery this guide will help you find what you need regardless of your budget.
We have included a brand summery at the end of this article that gives a brief description and history of the Japanese cutlery companies that make the kitchen knife sets we recommend. Most of the companies are based in Seki, Japan which is one of the most famous knife making cities on earth.
This is an excellent Japanese knife set at a great price. Yaxell has been making high quality kitchen cutlery for almost 100 years in Seki, Japan. They have a great mix of traditional knife making combined with modern manufacturing that has resulted in knives that perform at a high level, but are still relatively affordable.
Check out our Yaxell Knife Guide if you want to learn more about Yaxell knives. We also did an in depth review of the Yaxell Mon chef knife that is worth checking out if you think you might want to start with a single knife rather than a set.
This set is so small it almost seems weird to call it a set. It only ships with a chef knife and a honing rod. However, that knife is really good. We included the Premier Build-A-Block in this article, because it is a great way to get a good Japanese knife set started without spending a lot of money. The Shun Premier line is one of the best production knife series from Japan. These knives are lightweight, incredibly sharp and they offer excellent performance for the money. The storage block that is included in this set has three empty slots, so you can add more knives as you need them or when your budget allows.
If you want to learn more about Shun knives and knife sets, check out our Shun Knife Guide. We also did an in-depth Shun Classic Santoku knife review that is worth checking out if you are building a custom set.
Enso is a well respected Japanese knife company that has been making high quality, hand crafted knives since 1932. This great looking sixteen piece set has blades constructed with 37 layers of stainless steel over the top of a VG10 core. The unique look of the knives come from the hammered sashimi finish. The result are knives with tough blades with a distinctive look. The 12 cutting angle of Enso knives makes them some of the most impressively sharp knives on the market right out of the box.
While the blades of the knives in this set are certainly impressive, it was the handle material that first caught my eye. The handles are made of canvas micarta which is an extremely durable and grippable material often found on premium survival knives. Canvas micarta is my personal favorite knife handle material, but it is not often found on kitchen knives.
The Enso HD series offers excellent all around quality and performance at a relatively low price when compared to other high end Japanese knife brands. I personally appreciated the comfortable oval shaped handles of the HD series. I found them to be for comfortable than the D shaped handles often found on Japanese cutlery.
I always sort of had a negative view of Global knives prior to actually using them. I knew they were popular with a lot of chefs and busy home cooks, but I just thought they looked uncomfortable. Man, was I was wrong. Global knives are light, well balanced and the weird looking perforated handles are extremely comfortable. The word, nimble, probably best describes the way these knives feel when they are being used.
The Tojiro DP 8 piece set is one of the absolute best buys in the cutlery world. There are many kitchen knife sets that cost much more than this one that do not come close to the Tojiro DP set from a quality and performance standpoint. One of the benefits of the DP series of knives is that they are a well designed hybrid consisting a Japanese style blade and a Western style handle. This East meets West combination has resulted in a line of knives that have become extremely popular with home cooks and professional chefs alike.
For some reason Tojiro seems to run out of this set on a regular basis. However, I think it is worth the effort to build this knife set by buying the knives individually if that is the only option. This process is a bit tedious, but it can also be fun. A good starter knife storage block for this process is the Coninx Magnetic Knife Holder.
I really wish Tojiro would offer a storage block with this set, but those can be bought separately. Even though the DP Damascus knives cost a bit more per knife than the conventional DP knives they are still really well priced for Japanese Damascus steel knives, and this set is a great way to get an excellent Japanese knife set started.
This excellent Japanese knife set from Miyabi has a relatively steep price tag, but if you are looking for premiere quality and classic Japanese styling this set is tough to beat. These knives have a VG10 steel core wrapped in a 64 layer flower Damascus pattern. Then the blades are hardened using the CRYODUR ice hardening treatment to ensure they are durable and hold an edge extremely well. Finally the blades are hand honed to a very sharp 9.5 to 12 degree edge.
The black linen micarta D shaped handles are extremely comfortable and a great choice for a busy home cook. If your current knife set causes discomfort after extended use this set may be the perfect upgrade.
This is a great set for anyone who really likes Santoku knives. They have been growing in popularity for years, and this 2 knife set would be a great start for a Santoku fan looking to build out a full kitchen cutlery set. Both of the included knives are extremely well balanced. This will be especially noticeable if you are moving up from cheaper knives. The high carbon blades hold there edge really well. However the downside of high carbon blades is that they must be hand washed and immediately dried to avoid rust spots. This slight inconvenience is worth it for the impressive performance and edge retention of these knives. 041b061a72