From carving Sunday roasts to dicing garlic, seasoned home chefs know how difficult cooking is when knives are below par. But with the top four best set of knives for home chef, you’ll be able to slice, chop, and dice like a pro in no time!
Providing you with a vast selection — from standard chef’s knives to sophisticated Japanese knives — a top-quality knife set will cover everything a home chef needs. So, you never have to settle without a crucial bit of kit last minute!
Check out the four best sets of knives perfect for home chefs below:
Best Set of Knives for Home Chef
OUR TOP PICK!
NO 1. PICK: Mercer Culinary Genesis 6-Piece Best Set of Knives for Home Chef with Wood Block
Product Name: Mercer Culinary Genesis 6-Piece Best Set of Knives for Home Chef with Wood Block
Product Description: The top best set of knives for home chef is Mercer's Culinary Genesis 6-Piece Set. It has a compact design and is one of the more unique knife sets available for home chefs. And it's all thanks to its tempered glass knife block, making it look classy and functional. The knife block's tempered glass adds a sophisticated touch to any home kitchen. It lets you see if a misplaced knife or grime is inside, prompting fast cleanups. But the downside to its tempered glass is that it can get dirty fast! Unless you're up for regular cleanings, this knife set might not be for you. Aside from the knife block, this set's knives are of excellent quality as well. They perform well than some of their more expensive counterparts I've tested. Each blade sliced well with little to no resistance. And they're among the smoothest I've tried, perfect for any aspiring home chef. Mercer's 6-Piece set contains two paring knives, a utility knife, a boning knife, a bread knife, and a chef's knife. They fit perfectly into the provided tempered knife glass block. But that's the thing — the knife block can only accommodate the knives it came with, so adding other blades later is impossible. Overall, Mercer is your best choice if you're not planning on growing your kitchen knife collection at home.
Offer price: $
Maintenance and Care
Mercer Culinary’s Genesis 6-Piece Knife Set has everything you need in one package: six alloy steel blades and one functional and stylish knife block! It has two paring knives, a boning knife, a bread knife, a utility knife, and a chef’s knife. So, whether you’re planning on cutting veggies, steak, or bread — this set has it all. And for storage, the set comes with a unique tempered glass knife block. It’s the perfect set for aspiring home chefs looking to cut like a pro at home. But if you’re not keen on keeping up with maintenance, look elsewhere. After all, this 6-Piece knife set from Mercer needs comprehensive care.
Top-quality alloy steel blades.
The knife set comes with a stylish knife block.
It offers great value with 6 pieces in one set.
Guaranteed sharpness for years.
The tempered glass on the knife block gets dirty fast.
Its tempered glass prevents room for extra knives.
Wusthof Classic Slim Ikon 7-Piece Knife Set with Wooden Acacia Block
Are you low in space but still want a knife set to complete your kitchen at home? Search no further than Wusthof’s Classic Slim Ikon 7-Piece Knife Set.
As its name suggests, the knife set contains seven quality knives perfect for daily cooking. It has everything you need for home cooking. These include a bread knife, a paring knife, a chef’s knife, come-apart shears, and more! Wusthof’s 7-Piece set is perfect for those with limited space.
After all, the knife set comes with a sleek and stylish block that stores all seven blades without taking up much space! It’s ideal for apartment dwellers or homeowners with small kitchens. With Wusthof, you don’t need to settle for less, and you’ll be able to slice and dice like a pro, even in a tiny space!
Each knife hails from Germany, sporting a Rockwell hardness of 58, making them quite durable! Completing its impressive design is its 14-degree blade angle for superb sharpness. And finally, it comes with contoured triple-riveted knife handles for better grip and control.
More on the knife block, it’s made with pure Acacia, making it highly durable. But since it’s wooden, expect it to dull your blades over time if you don’t maintain them well.
The only downside to Wusthof’s 7-Piece knife set is that it doesn’t have steak knives or a sharpener. And the latter is especially crucial as the Acacia block the set comes with dullens the blades fast. However, you can always buy these two at separate costs.
Global Takashi 7-Piece Knife Set with Wooden Block for Home Chef
Global’s 7-Piece Takashi knife set is the perfect choice for modern home chefs. It has the sharpest blades on this list, ideal for precise cutters! Plus, it has a modern and visually-appealing design that can fit any kitchen.
Since these knives are Japanese, they’re light and well-balanced. And unlike other Japanese blades, these from Global are durable. It’s all thanks to their low-profile heels, extending their lifespan when sharpened.
Moreover, these blades sport a Rockwell hardness between 56 and 58, making them super sharp! Even with continuous use, these knives will maintain their impressive edge for years. All blades performed well, providing clean and fast slices with little effort.
The knife block is top-quality wood that can withstand abuse for years. And it comes with additional slots for three more tools, including a kitchen shear. Still, since it’s wood, expect the block to dull the blades FAST. So, if you’re not ready to care for these intricate knives regularly, look elsewhere.
Another drawback I experienced with this set is the knife handles being too thin. Their small design makes them challenging to grip, making them a nightmare for those with giant hands.
Coltellerie Berti 5-Piece Insieme Knife Set with Wood Block
The last contender for the best set of knives for home chef is Coltellerie’s Berti 5-Piece Knife Set. It’s one of the most stylish knife sets available, perfect for those willing to splurge!
Each blade features a stylish lucite carbon handle with an added notch. Combined, you get a secure and comfortable knife handle for easy gripping.
An exciting feature of Coltellerie’s knife set is that all five blades have their wood block! Yes, you heard that right; each knife has its wooden block. And since each one is magnetic, you can attach them, saving you much-needed kitchen space. You can also place the blocks in designated areas in your kitchen for easier access.
But despite its impressive knife block design, this set doesn’t have the best blade performance. For instance, the chef’s knife felt heavy and felt unbalanced with its handle. Meanwhile, the paring knife, while light, has a more extended blade. So, at the end of the day, you’re paying for the design instead of the performance with this set.
Overall, Coltellerie’s 5-Piece Knife set is perfect for those looking to splurge for their kitchen. After all, it adds a touch of sophistication to any kitchen!
What to Look for in the Best Set of Knives for Home Chef?
Finding the best set of knives for home chef depends on your preferences. After all, everyone has different preferred cuts and techniques! But to make your search easier, here are a few factors to watch out for when choosing a knife set for home chefs:
🔪 Knife Storage
When investing in a knife set for home use, you’d naturally want to get one with proper storage. After all, most of us share our houses with curious children and pets! And you wouldn’t want either of those to get into your collection of kitchen knives.
Some knife sets come with regular blocks, which is one of the safest ways to store these blades. But the downside is that they shorten your knives’ lifespan as they tend to dull their edges fast! And they’re pretty limited, as specific slots can only accommodate certain blades. So, no, you can’t force your butcher knife into a chef’s knife slot!
Meanwhile, some knife sets come with a built-in sharpener. These might be pricier, but they keep your blades safe and sharp over time.
You can also get knives without a block or storage and place them in a universal block or kitchen drawers. And if space is a luxury, consider getting a magnetic strip system. They’re mountable on walls, keeping your knives in easy reach.
Finally, some knife blocks come with additional slots for extra tools. And these are the best choice if you’re looking to expand your kitchen knife collection at home.
🔪 Type and Number of Kitchen Knives
Most professional chefs advise people to get the following blades for home use: a chef’s knife, a paring knife, and a serrated knife. They say these are more than enough to accomplish everything you need in a home kitchen. And some knife sets come with only these three, saving you money.
But those are rare, and most knife sets nowadays have between 6 and 8 blades. These are the perfect amount for small families, helping you prepare everything you need at home. However, they aren’t enough if you’re preparing food for parties for over ten individuals.
Overall, the type and number of kitchen knives needed for the set depend on your needs. But if you want to save, consider buying a smaller package with 3 to 4 blades and add when needed.
🔪 Japanese vs. European (German, French, Western) Knives
Distinguishing what you need between Japanese and European knives in a set is tricky. After all, all knives don’t fall into one specific category or the other, and others neither! Still, many use these terms to get a sense of the unique characteristics of each blade.
European knives, aka German, French, and Western-style blades, are heavier. They’re thicker and sport a curved edge for better rocking motion. A European knife is the best pick for those who do back-and-forth movements when cutting.
Meanwhile, Japanese knives are lighter and sport thinner and straighter blades. Its lightweight design allows for better precision and detailed cuts. They’re perfect for those who like to prepare both aesthetically pleasing and delicious food.
At the end of the day, there’s no such thing as the perfect “weight” for knives. It all depends on your preference and skill set.
🔪 Knife Material
Most knife sets contain blades with the same material, so it’s crucial to consider which would benefit you best. The most common blade materials you’ll encounter are carbon steel, ceramic, and stainless steel. And, of course, the most popular among home chefs are stainless steel blades.
After all, stainless steel blades are durable and resistant to dulling. And you can easily sharpen them when needed. Choose stainless steel if you want all-rounder blades that’ll last a while.
Meanwhile, choose Damascus steel if you want to splurge and enjoy top-quality knives like a pro. It combines carbon steel and stainless steel in one blade, complete with an astounding exterior design. But these are incredibly pricy, so consider carefully.
Besides the blade material, you should also check the handle’s material. Depending on your preference, these handles can be plastic, wood, or metal. But carefully consider how comfortable it is to your grip, as it’ll determine how easy the blade is to handle.
Generally, home chefs settle for wooden handles as they’re easier to grip and comfortable! But as comfy and aesthetically pleasing wooden handles on knives are, they aren’t the most durable. And they also require a ton of care!
🔪 Maintenance and Care
Since you’re looking for a knife set intended for home use, it’s best to settle with one that’s easy to maintain.
Many manufacturers advise not to put knives in a dishwasher as the high heat can ruin the blades. Moreover, they can become dull from hitting other cutlery inside the machines. Unfortunately, most home chefs don’t follow that advice.
But if you don’t have the time to care for your knife set, settle for blades with a metal or plastic handle. These are often safer to put into a dishwasher.
On the other hand, carbon steel knives rust fast, so you’ll need to dry them off after washing them ASAP. Meanwhile, you can leave stainless steel blades to air dry and not worry about rusting. Finally, ceramic knives are fragile; once they get chipped or damaged, there’s no going back!
Overall, if you want a durable knife set that’ll keep up with your home cooking, choose a stainless steel set. They’re easier to maintain and last a while.
The tang is the unsharpened part of a knife extending down to its handle. And these are the three kinds of knife tang:
- Full Tang
A full tang consists of one solid metal piece running down the handle. Some designs have the tang visible and secured by rivets. And a full tang knife is the best pick for improved balance and durability. But the downside to a full tang is that the handle can often come loose from the blade.
- Half Tang
A half tang consists of a blade extending halfway through the knife’s handle. It’s fragile, and a half-tang blade can snap in half if you apply too much pressure! After all, glue is the only one binding the blade and the handle.
- Rat Tail Tang
A rail tail tang consists of a blade narrowing down through the knife handle. And you can find this welded at the base, making it more secure than a half tang. Still, rat tail tang knives can become loose in the long run, leaving you with a wobbly handle.
🔪 Handle Design
Many knives are suited for left- and right-handed chefs as their double bevel allow both sides to be sharp and angular. But some have awkward designs that left-handed users may find uncomfortable to use. And this is especially the case for bread knives, as they only have a single bevel.
That means most bread knives have a blade that’s only sharp on the right side. Either way, carefully consider the handle design of each knife included in the set to see if it’s comfortable and easy for you to use.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What knives do I need to have for home cooking?
A: The essential knives every home kitchen must have are the chef’s, paring, and serrated knives. A chef’s knife is your all-rounder, being able to chop veggies, meat, and more. Meanwhile, a paring knife is ideal for precise cuts, and a serrated knife is for bread.
Q: What is the second most commonly used knife in a home kitchen?
A: Many home chefs consider the paring knife the second most commonly used blade in their kitchens. But even if it’s essential, only a few use it often as it’s made for small and delicate items. For instance, you can use a paring knife for cleaner peeling shallot or halving lemons.
Q: What knives do professional chefs use that a home chef can also use?
A: The chef’s knife is a commonly used knife by professionals that home chefs can use. For example, you can use a chef’s knife to chop veggies, slice meat, and peel fruit.
Q: Should a chef’s knife be heavy or light for a home chef?
A: The weight of a chef’s knife depends on the home’s chef preference. For instance, a heavier model would suit you if you like to rock your blade while cutting. After all, its curved blade helps keep your hand more stable and in one area. Meanwhile, if you want to slice, a light edge would be easier to move back and forth.
Q: Do professional chefs use Japanese or German knives?
A: Most professional chefs use German knives as they’re heavier and easier to handle. They guarantee better control over the blade, unlike Japanese knives, which tend to be lighter. But when it comes to fast and clean slicing, Japanese knives are superior.
The Bottom Line
Although you’re cooking at home, it doesn’t mean you have to settle for low-quality knives. After all, you’ll be cooking for those dearest to you — your family and friends! So, pick your knife sets well, ensuring it has all you need for quality home cooking. Either way, the products above should help you find the best set of knives for home chef in no time.