Anyone who loves to cook and does it often knows the utter importance of having a good kitchen knife. But if you’re anything like me, then you don’t want a slew of knives hanging around your kitchen. I am more of a “one size fits most” kitchen knife type of person. If I can use the same thing to cut my meat, vegetables, and fruits, then I am one happy lady!
Well, not all knives are created equal. But if you are looking for a go-to knife that can handle almost all of your foods, then you need a Santoku knife. A Santoku knife is specifically designed to cut through almost any food with ease. That cuts your prep time in half and also makes things far easier. After all, did you ever really know which knife to use for different food items? I sure didn’t.
Not all Santoku knives are created equal. And if you were to perform a quick Google search for a Santoku knife, then you would be met with several great knives to choose from. Well, to make the buying process easier, we are showcasing the top 5 best Santoku knives on the market, plus a couple of bonus cheapies for those who are on a budget.
What Should I Look For When Buying a Santoku Knife?
Nobody should buy a Santoku knife willy-nilly. There are a few different things to consider. Here are the top 5 criteria to look for when buying a Santoku knife.
Criteria #1: How big is the Santoku knife?
There are different sizes when it comes to Santoku knives. Typically, a 7-inch is enough to slice through most foods with ease. However, some may prefer to have a larger blade, such as an 8-inch or 9-inch. Others may prefer something smaller and will opt for the 4-inch. Consider your personal preference along with what you typically cook when deciding on which Santoku knife length is right for you.
Criteria #2: What is the Santoku knife made of?
Santoku knives can be made using a variety of materials. Stainless steel is the most highly recommended because it is not prone to scratches or other blemishes. It is also resistant to rust. This makes it a long-lasting material you can rely on. However, it is fairly pricy. Carbon is a good runner-up material, although it may start to rust or lose sharpness over time.
Criteria #3: How much is the Santoku knife?
When it comes to buying anything in life, price should always be considered. The price of Santoku knives has an incredible range. Some are cheap at $10 while others are over $200. It all comes down to the material and design of the Santoku knife. Take price into consideration and see if the extra money is worth the benefits the knife has to offer.
Criteria #4: What type of handle does the knife have?
Yes, the handle is important when it comes to a chef knife. The handle will make all of the difference when it comes to safety and comfort. If you don’t want to end up with a hurting hand by the end of your prep, then make sure to find a knife that comes with a comfortable handle with a superior grip. Cutting-edge safety features are a perk that you might want to consider when it comes to buying your next knife, too.
Criteria #5: What style is the blade?
The last thing to consider is the blade style, and yes, there are a few of them. Some blades will be designed with an extra curve to allow for a rocking motion while chopping. Others will have added grooves or ridges that speed up prep time. For some people, these extra features won’t be incredibly important. For others who want a more precise way of prepping, this is a key feature to look for.
Here’s How We’ve Determined the Best Santoku Knife
Need help deciding which Santoku knife is right for you? No worries. We have sifted through plenty of Santoku knives to come up with these top 5. We looked at the specific features of the Santoku knife as well as the price. We also looked at real reviews from actual customers to see why these knives were so highly rated as kitchen knives. Let’s get cutting!
#1: Santoku Knife – imarku 7 inch Kitchen Knife (Best Value Santoku Knife)
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I love a good deal. This is true whether I am shopping for a car or new kitchen knives. Well, when I ran across the imarku 7-inch Kitchen Knife, I knew it was going to immediately be placed as the best value Santoku Knife. Why? Because this product is cheap yet comes with a ton of features that anyone would want from their 7 Santoku knife. Let’s take a look at some of the top benefits this knife has to offer.
Sharp, Thin, and Lightweight
Sharpness is key when it comes to the knife’s blade. Well, the imarku 7-inch Kitchen Knife is designed using a German high carbon stainless steel material that is known for being razor-sharp. Its overall thickness is only 2.5mm, weighing only 6.7 ounces. Being so thin and lightweight, it’s a cinch when it comes to dinnertime prepping.
Double-Sided Groove Design
The fun thing about Santoku knives is that they typically come with a unique blade style. Well, the imarku 7-inch Kitchen Knife blade is designed with a double-sided groove. How does this benefit the home cook? With an extra gap between the blade and the items being sliced, there is less contact. Less contact equates to swifter cutting. In the end, you will have prepped dinner in less time than before.
Ergonomic Pakkawood Handle
Safety is a major concern when it comes to knives. While the imarku 7-inch Kitchen Knife comes with an impressively sharp blade, the handle widens at the ends to protect fingers. The handles are also designed using Pakkawood to increase overall comfort and allow for superior manipulation while in use.
Final Thoughts: This 7-inch Santoku knife is notably the best value on this list. It comes with some great features, such as an ergonomic Pakkawood handle and a double-sided grooved blade. It’s cheap enough to fit almost anyone’s budget without substituting quality.
What Reviewers Said: There is an overwhelming amount of positive reviews when it comes to this knife. People have said things like ” Great knife, great value” and “Super-premium knife”. In fact, there were so many positive reviews that we couldn’t find a single negative comment. Now that’s a purchase you can feel confident in!
#2: Misono UX10 Santoku 7.0″ (Best Knife)
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For some, money is no object. Or perhaps you’re simply looking to spend a little more on the best Santoku knife on the market. Well, if you’re ready and willing to shell out some extra money on a high-end knife, look no further than the Misono UX10 Santoku 7-Inch Santoku Knife. This is, without a doubt, the most top-of-the-line Santoku Knife that will change the way you look at Santoku knives for good. Here’s why.
Highest Grade Stainless Steel Blade
If having a stainless steel blade is of utmost importance to you, then the Misono UX10 Santoku is the knife for you. This blade is designed using high-quality Swedish stainless steel that is stain- and rust-resistant. It has the longest-lasting edge retention out of any blade on this list, meaning you won’t have to worry about sharpening for quite some time. This is a major bonus, as most people don’t want to have to worry about sharpening every time they prep.
Riveted Nickel Silver Bolster
One special feature of the Misono Santoku is the riveted nickel silver bolster. This isn’t found on other knives on this list. Why should you want it? Because it enhances the overall durability of the knife. It also balances the weight between the blade and handle. Speaking of weight, this is an incredibly lightweight knife weighing only 6.5 ounces. Perfect for any user!
This Santoku knife is designed using a 70:30 asymmetrical bevel. This simply means that there is increased sharpness with the blade being at a steeper angle. The knife is made with an incredibly thin cutting edge, too, which encourages extra sharpness more than a traditional single-edged design.
Final Thoughts: If you’re looking for a Santoku knife that can handle anything in its path with incredible sharpness and durability, then the Misono UX10 Santoku knife is the knife for you. While it’s pricier than other Santoku knives, it’s worth every penny. You won’t have to worry about stains, rust, or even lack of sharpness with this high-quality knife.
What Reviewers Said: This is another knife that comes with an overwhelming amount of positive reviews, with people saying, “I can say it’s easily the best knife I’ve ever used”. The only minor issue some people had was that the handle was a bit bulkier than they would have liked, but it was easily overlooked.
#3: ZWILLING J.A. Henckels Pro 7 Hollow Edge Rocking Santoku Knife (Best Rocking Santoku Knife)
If you’re looking for the best rocking Santoku knife when it comes to slicing and dicing, then the ZWILLING J.A. Henckels Pro 7 Hollow Edge Rocking Santoku Knife might be your best option. This knife is unique because it has a special rocking design that makes it easy to slice through all of your food items in no time. There are many other wonderful hallmarks of this knife, including the following.
Curved Bolster and POM Handle for Comfort and Safety
Anyone who makes meals regularly knows that a hand cramp is no joke. I have been there. While you’re slicing, dicing, and chopping, you end up having to stop halfway through to give your hand a break. Well, that’s why it is so important to find a premier 7-inch blade with a specialty handle and bolster like the one found on the Zwilling J.A. Henckels knife. It comes with a curved bolster and POM handle that not only encourages comfort but safety, too.
Broader Curved Blade to Allow Rocking Motion
The main feature of this knife is that it comes with a broadly curved blade. What does this mean for the user? A broader curve on the blade allows for a rocking motion while slicing, dicing, or cutting – otherwise known as a western-style of cutting. Rocking is great when it comes to cutting a variety of foods. However, if you don’t want to rock back and forth to chop, you can use the straight back for a more precise “Asian” chopping motion.
Full Length of the Blade Can Be Used and Sharpened
This hollow ground Santoku knife was designed using precision-forged high carbon stainless steel. It has excellent edge retention. It is also known for being a premier 7-inch Santoku with a blade that can be used entirely when cutting. The entirety of the blade can also be sharpened from bolster to tip. This ensures that you can chop swiftly while also keeping complete sharpness from top to bottom.
Final Thoughts: This is the best rocking Santoku knife because it allows for superior cutting, whether you want to use the rocking motion or more precise chopping. The blade can be fully used and sharpened. Users also enjoy a comfortable handle that is also safer than some other Santoku knives on the market.
What Reviewers Said: Customers love this premier 7 Santoku knife. The biggest drawback for some was that they did not know how to use the curved blade properly. If you’re unsure about how to use a rocking motion, then this might not be the product for you. However, opting for a curved blade will encourage you to learn new skills in the kitchen. So, this may actually be a great option to increase your skills.
#4: Mercer Culinary Genesis 8-Inch Forged Chef’s Granton Edge Knife (Best Low Cost)
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On a tight budget? Don’t fret. Although there are plenty of Santoku knives that cost an arm and a leg, that doesn’t mean you have to spend oodles of money on quality. The Mercer Culinary Genesis Forged Santoku Knife is an excellent option for those seeking a knife that will keep food from sticking and offer an incredible blade with a sharp edge. Let’s face it – this is the deal of the lifetime. Not sold yet? Then you might want to look at these great pros.
Comfortable and Safe Handle
Although cheap, the handle is still comfortable to hold. This is thanks to the handle made with Santoprene. It’s notably comfortable while also offering a safe grip.
Made with High Carbon Forged Steel
No, it’s not made with stainless steel, but that doesn’t mean it’s not still a great pick. This Santoku Knife (7-inch) is made with high-quality carbon German steel. Although not German stainless steel, this German steel ensures that there is high resistance to rust, corrosion, and discoloration.
Tapered Edge on the Blade
A tapered edge on the blade allows for plenty of stability while cutting. It also means that it is easily honed for long-lasting sharpness. If you want increased efficiency while you prep your meals, you will certainly enjoy having a blade with a tapered edge on your side.
One of the major pros when it comes to this cost-efficient knife is that it comes with a lifetime warranty, something you won’t find with the other knives on this list. The Mercer Culinary Genesis Forged Santoku Knife comes with an incredible lifetime warranty so if something goes wrong, the company is there to help. You can’t go wrong with that!
Final Thoughts: It’s cheap, but you won’t know the difference when you’re holding it in your hand. The 7-inch blade is made with high carbon steel that is excellent at holding sharpness and resisting unwanted discoloration and rust. It is comfortable and easy to use, making it an excellent pick for those on a budget.
What Reviewers Said: People love this knife! However, it is a bit prone to bending. One should be careful when it comes to cutting incredibly thick meats, as it can bend if you’re not careful. Other than that, customers have raved about the many pros this knife has to offer.
#5: Wusthof Classic Hollow Edge Santoku Knife 7, 7″ (Best Full Tang Santoku Knife)
When it comes to the highest quality Santoku knives, one company you can’t go wrong with is Wusthof. They have been known for providing knives with superior chopping, cutting, dicing, and mincing capabilities. There is so much to love about the razor-sharp Wusthof Classic Hollow Edge Santoku Knife 7. Let’s dive in.
Full Tang and Triple Riveted
This knife is the only full tang knife on this list. Why is this worth mentioning? Well, full tang essentially means that the blade runs all the way through the handle. Paired with a triple-riveted design, there has never been better precision and durability while cutting. You’re in complete control when it comes to this full tang knife that utilizes precision-forged, high carbon stainless steel.
Twice the Edge Retention
Aside from being a full tang and triple riveted Santoku knife, another one of the pros to these knives is that they come with twice the edge retention of other Santoku knives on the market, including the knives on this list. Thanks to the Precision Edge Technology (PEtec) found in every Wusthof Classic Hollow Edge Santoku Knife 7, every blade is 20% sharper, too. With this blade, you can guarantee sharpness and edge retention – two things every quality Santoku knife needs.
Comfortable POM Handle with Finger Guard
A sharp edge isn’t the only thing to enjoy with this Santoku knife. It’s the comfortable handle, too. This is another handle that is made with POM, but it’s a bit different. This comfortable handle comes with a full bolster and finger guard, too. This encourages overall safety while you slice and dice, which is something anyone can enjoy.
Final Thoughts: This is a good Santoku knife for those who want excellent edge retention and a high carbon steel, full-tang design with triple riveting. It’s notably one of the sharpest blades that extends through the handle, offering ultimate durability paired with a razor-sharp edge.
What Reviewers Said: We couldn’t find any negative reviews when it came to this full-tang, hollow ground Santoku high carbon steel knife. It is undeniably one of the top picks that you can feel confident in.
Need the best Santoku knife, but don’t have a lot of money to spend? You can still find a high-quality knife without spending too much money. Here are our top 2 solutions for those needing a knife on a budget.
#1 Best Budget: Cuisinart Triple Rivet Collection 7″ Santoku Knife
People love Cuisinart, and that includes the Santoku knife 7-inch Triple Rivet Collection. This 7-inch Santoku knife is made with desirable high carbon material that is great at keeping food from sticking while also allowing for precision while cutting. The blade is nice and sharp to handle all of your needs in the kitchen.
#2 Best Budget: Farberware EdgeKeeper Santoku Knife
It’s a little smaller than other knives, but if you’re looking for a cheap 5-inch knife to serve your needs in the kitchen, the Farberware EdgeKeeper Santoku Knife is an excellent choice. The 5-inch blade is not only incredibly sharp to begin with, but is self-sharpening. Each time you use this knife, you can expect it to be just as sharp as the first time you used it. Comfortable and easy to use, this is one of the best Santoku 5-inch knives on the market.
What Is the Best Use of a Santoku Knife?
The word Santoku directly explains why this type of knife is for: chopping, dicing and mincing. These are known as the “three virtues” or “three uses” of this knife. This means that you can use these knives to cut a variety of food items, including meats, vegetables, fruits, and more. Most of these knives are also designed to prevent food from sticking to the blade, making your kitchen experience better than ever before.
Are Santoku Knives Dishwasher Safe?
Keep in mind that most Santoku knives are not designed to be dishwasher safe. This is because of the material used in the hollow ground blade. Most items will say not dishwasher safe because it can interfere with the quality of the blade. Not only can it cause the blade to dull more quickly, but it can also make the blade more susceptible to stains and rust. So, listen to the warning that these knives are not dishwasher safe. Wash by hand, and the blade on your chef knife will last much longer.
What Size Santoku Knife Is Best?
The size of the blade is solely dependent on what you are using the blade for. Some might prefer a smaller blade as they do not do a whole lot of bulk prepping in the kitchen. A smaller, 5-inch knife would be recommended for a single person or a couple that doesn’t need to do a whole lot of cutting. However, someone who does a lot of cutting will prefer to have a longer blade. A Santoku knife 7-inch chef’s knife is best for larger projects.
When trying to find the right blade size, consider how much prep work you do in the kitchen. Also, take into consideration the types of food you are cutting. Someone who cuts a lot of thick meats will need a larger blade and sharper edge Santoku knife.
Are Santoku Knives Any Good?
If you are new to the world of Japanese knives, you might wonder if the Santoku models are any good. Well, Santoku knives are designed to be much thinner than their Western counterparts. A thinner blade makes it easier to be more precise while prepping, which is why chefs and home cooks alike are fond of these knives.
Aside from being thin, the Santoku style is also far more lightweight with a better distribution of weight. This means you can chop, slice, and dice far easier than using a bulkier model. All in all, if you’re looking for a knife that makes prep a breeze, a Santoku style might be the best option.
Verdict: Your Best Best Santoku Knife
Having trouble deciding? We have broken it down into short, simple sentences that describe each knife quickly and easily.
If you want the best value for money, pick the imarku Kitchen Knife. It’s lightweight and has a sharp blade, but the handles make it comfortable and easy to maneuver. Customers like that they can get all of the features of a top-rated knife without spending too much money.
If you need a full tang blade, pick the Wusthof Classic Hollow Edge Santoku Knife 7. This spectacular knife comes with a full tang blade that gives superior reliability and durability. With a super sharp edge that retains its sharpness, you don’t have to worry about sharpening any time soon. The hollow ground blade is easy to use and prevents food from sticking to the blade.
If you want to keep the spending under $50, pick Mercer Culinary Genesis 8-Inch Forged Chef’s Granton Edge Knife. This is a high-end chef’s knife for a low price. Instead of spending so much money on a stainless steel blade, you can spend less and opt for a carbon model instead. It won’t be as rust-resistant as high carbon stainless steel, but it’s better than nothing. It still comes with a sharp, reliable blade and a comfortable handle.
I know better than just about anyone how difficult it can be to find a quality chef s knife you can trust. Well, whether you’re looking for a hollow ground, high carbon, stainless steel blade or something cheaper, you can find it on this list. Every knife on this list is guaranteed to offer quality results. Each blade is designed to allow for superior prep in the kitchen. Take your specific needs into consideration while shopping. Don’t forget to look into the type of blade of the knife as well as the handle.