Guides

Cozymeal Knife Guide: What to Buy for 2021

Published on November 23, 2021 | 0 Comments
knife guide
Published on November 23, 2021 | 0 Comments

Kitchen knives are absolutely a chef’s best friend, but without a proper knife guide, it can be difficult to know if you have the right knives for your needs.

Because quality knives are an investment, you’ll want to make the most informed choices you can when purchasing. A knife guide can come in handy for just such a purpose.

Which materials hold up to repeated use without dulling quickly? What shapes are best for the different tasks you’ll encounter when cooking up your best specialties and learning new techniques? The helpful knife guide that follows describes the best knife selections for each function. There’s even a bonus best cutting boards section to get you started putting your knife guide purchases to good use!

 

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Knife Shapes

Chef's

Zwilling TWIN Four Star II 8" Chef's Knife

When it comes to the best chef’s knives, every knife guide worth its salt should include the Zwilling TWIN Four Star II 8" Chef's Knife. With a flexible, chip-resistant blade forged from ice-hardened steel, it’s a true workhorse to have in your kitchen for general use.

  • Price: $119.99

Zwilling TWIN Four Star II 8 Inch Chef's Knife
via Zwilling

Henckels Classic Precision 8" Chef's Knife

One of the best chef’s knife under $100 with a world-renowned name, the Henckels Classic Precision 8" Chef's Knife is a star in this year’s knife guide for its superior quality. This Spanish-made piece has a durable blade made of stainless steel for precision cutting, slicing and chopping every time.

  • Price: $74.99 

Henckels Classic Precision 8 Inch Chef's Knife
via Henckels

Zwilling Pro 7" Chef's Knife

With the Zwilling Pro 7" Chef's Knife, you get a unique blade shape and an ergonomically designed handle to keep your hands comfortable while working. This is a must-add to your own knife guide and a must-have for any kitchen task, large or small.

  • Price: $89.99 

Zwilling Pro 7 Inch Chef's Knife
via Zwilling

Zwilling Gourmet 7" Chinese Chef's Knife

Next in our knife guide is the Zwilling Gourmet 7" Chinese Chef's Knife, which gives you a broad, flat blade that resembles a cleaver. It’s designed with the comfort of a traditional chef’s knife in mind. Including one in your cutlery collection means heavy-duty cutting power with the added convenience of a bench scraper. This is one of the best kitchen knives for heavy-duty prep work.

  • Price: $104.99 

Zwilling Gourmet 7 Inch Chinese Chef's Knife
via Zwilling

Paring 

Henckels Classic 4" Paring Knife

Try the Henckels Classic 4" Paring Knife for all your paring, peeling and decorative slicing needs. The triple-rivet handle ensures superior craftsmanship and comfort while creating fine slices, elegantly shaped garnishes and more.

  • Price: $39.99 

Henckels Classic 4 Inch Paring Knife
via Henckels

Miyabi Artisan 3.5" Paring Knife

With the Miyabi Artisan 3.5" Paring Knife, you get the premium quality of one of the best paring knives in a compact piece that should be included in every knife guide. With a gorgeous hammered Tsuchime finish and a heritage based in samurai sword craftsmanship, this razor-sharp knife is the perfect tool for handling your paring needs. 

  • Price: $139.99 

Miyabi Artisan 3.5 Inch Paring Knife
via Miyabi

Kikuichi Molybdenum Paring Knife

A stand-out in this year’s knife guide, the Kikuichi Molybdenum Paring Knife enhances a stainless-steel blade with a less-common metal and turns it into a high-caliber paring knife. The smaller profile and shorter blade length give you greater control, while the thinner blade ensures confidence for fine cutting.

  • Price: $80

Kikuichi Molybdenum Paring Knife
via Kikuichi 

Bread

Zwilling TWIN Signature 8" Bread Knife

No knife guide would be complete without a bread knife. The Zwilling TWIN Signature 8" Bread Knife provides a blade that’s lighter than the others without compromising strength or sharpness. And the ergonomic handle ensures comfort no matter how many loaves you slice through.

  • Price $64.99

Zwilling TWIN Signature 8 Inch Bread Knife
via Zwilling

Shears

Zwilling Poultry Shears

When you add a pair of Zwilling Poultry Shears to your list, you’re able to cut through all layers of poultry cleanly and easily, with safety and precision. As a bonus, you can also snip greens, herbs and spices, doubling your value. Shears may not be the most typical item in a knife guide, but this set earns a solid place on our list.

  • Price: $42.99

Zwilling Poultry Shears
via Zwilling

Cleaver

Zwilling Four Star 6" Meat Cleaver

We’ve included the Zwilling Four Star 6" Meat Cleaver in our cutlery buying guide for its versatility, added safety and comfort thanks to a uniform bolster-to-blade transition point. The linear edge is perfect for chopping and pull-cutting through soft and moderate-textured ingredients without chipping the metal.

  • Price: $149.99

Zwilling Four Star 6 Inch Meat Cleaver
via Zwilling

Knife Sets

Henckels Solution 15-Pc Knife Block Set

One of the best knife sets listed here in our knife guide is the Henckels Solution 15-Pc Knife Block Set. You’ll have everything from a chef’s knife to kitchen shears in a handsome block, all crafted with world-class Henckels quality.

  • Price: $139.99 

Henckels Solution 15-Pc Knife Block Set
via Henckels

Zwilling TWIN Four Star II 7pc Knife Block Set

You’ll get six heavy-duty pieces of cutlery with the Zwilling TWIN Four Star II 7pc Knife Block Set, including a sharpening steel and slots for additional knives as you grow your collection. The block is made of bamboo, which is sustainable and attractive on any countertop.

  • Price: $369.99 

Zwilling TWIN Four Star II 7pc Knife Block Set
via Zwilling

Zwilling Pro Cutting Board 5 Pc Set

Add the compact Zwilling Pro Cutting Board 5 Pc Set to your personal kitchen knife buying guide. It’s one of the best cutting board-cutlery combinations available, with paring and utility knives, shears, a sharpener and a bamboo cutting board. It’s everything you need to get your kitchen adventures underway.

  • Price: $169.99 

Zwilling Pro Cutting Board 5 Pc Set
via Zwilling

Types of Knife Construction

Carbon Steel 

As the name states, carbon steel is composed of both steel and carbon, which makes it virtually indestructible. Many professional chefs favor carbon steel knives because they hold a sharp edge longer than other metals.

Carbon steel requires careful maintenance, as it tends to corrode and rust relatively easily. To add a carbon steel knife to your wish-list knife guide, try a multipurpose piece like the Miyabi Evolution 8" Chef's Knife. Its uniquely shaped blade can be used for both Japanese and Western cutting methods.

  • Price: $119.99 

Miyabi Evolution 8 Inch Chef's Knife
via Miyabi

Stainless Steel 

Unlike carbon steel, stainless steel also includes at least 10.5% chromium in its composition, making it resistant to corrosion and giving it that trademark stainless-steel sheen.

With the Kikuichi Elite Warikomi Damascus Tsuchime Paring Knife, you get low-maintenance stainless steel that attaches a Western-style handle to a Japanese blade. It’s one of the most popular options among the recommended knife guides of professional chefs.

  • Price: $220

Kikuichi Elite Warikomi Damascus Tsuchime Paring Knife
via Kikuichi

High Carbon Stainless Steel

Knives made of high carbon stainless steel provide the staying power of carbon steel while protecting them from corrosion like stainless steel.

We’ve included the Zwilling Pro 4" Paring Knife in our knife guide because it’s a power player of a high carbon stainless steel paring knife. An excellent tool for comfortably executing various cutting methods, the blade will retain its sharpness without danger of corrosion.

  • Price: $54.99

via Zwilling

Parts of a Kitchen Knife

Blade

The blade is often thought of as the sharpened side of a knife. But a blade is actually the entire section of the knife extending beyond the handle and bolster. It includes the spine, heel, edge, point and tip of the knife. 

Edge

The sharp side of the blade is called the edge. It can be smooth or serrated, with teeth of varying sizes and sharpness depending on the purpose of the kitchen knife. 

knife blade
via Canva

Spine

The top portion of the blade is called the spine. This surface is blunted and thicker than the edge. The shape and form of the spine are intended for safely applying pressure when cutting; think of it as a way to ensure precision and force. 

Tip

The tip of the knife is the point at the end of the blade. It’s ideal for starting clean drag cuts. Careful use of your kitchen knives includes preventing the tip from snapping off, as it is generally the thinnest part of the blade. 

Bolster

The bolster is the blunt portion of the blade directly opposite the tip, extending immediately beyond the handle. It connects the handle to the blade and provides room for your hand to rest higher up along the handle. This is useful when precision cuts are needed. 

knife bolster
via Canva

Handle

The handle of a kitchen knife sits behind the blade, connected to the blade by the bolster by rivets. Handles for kitchen knives can be made from several materials, including aluminum, wood and acrylic. A comfortable handle factors highly when purchasing kitchen knives. 

Tang

The tang of a kitchen knife is the portion of the blade behind the bolster that rests within the handle. In full tang knives, the tang extends the entire length of the handle. Full tang knives are sturdier and more durable than partial tang knives.

Bonus: Best Cutting Boards 

Zwilling 19x15" Cutting Board

When you’re ready to put down the kitchen knife buying guide and put your new kitchen knives to use, the Zwilling 19x15" Cutting Board will give you a steady surface for slicing any ingredients that come your way.

  • Price: $139.99 

Zwilling 19 x 15 Inch Cutting Board
via Zwilling

Cuisinart Cutting Board With Colander

A handy two-in-one kitchen gadget, the Cuisinart Cutting Board With Colander combines the utility of a cutting board with the handiness of a strainer positioned at the end. Simply cut your ingredients and slide them into the strainer for no-mess separation.

  • Price: $24.99

Cuisinart Cutting Board with Colander
via Cuisinart

There are endless options when it comes to selecting your knives, which makes using a knife guide to clarify your options helpful in identifying the knives you truly need. The good news: If you’re missing a piece that you need when a future project arises, you can always add more to your collection and expand your own cutlery collection with new choices.

The more inclusive your kitchen knife set is, the more culinary magic you’ll be equipped to create!

For even more ways to elevate your kitchen, check out more chef-recommended cookware in the Cozymeal Shop.

*Prices subject to change.

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