I love knives, in a good way. This chef is very picky about what cuts, chops, and dices in my kitchen. I have always been curious about what the professionals consider the best kitchen knives for the money. In this post, I am focusing on individual knives. Frankly, I have found that knife sets have too many pieces, many of which you may never use. To me, too many choices tend to be overwhelming.

Generally, according to the pros, the best knives are German or Japanese. When you first purchase a knife, it is sharp and lovely. Over the years, however, the blade can dull quickly. I am judging these knives on the basis of quality, ability to maintain sharpness, and how it feels in your hand. This girl is on team SHARP. A dull edge to me is a nightmare. As far as I am concerned, these are the most essential kitchen knives.

1. Chef’s Knife

An 8- to 10-inch chef’s knife is the primary cutting tool. This is the one that you need for most everything. Professionals acknowledge that a long knife takes some patience getting used to at first. Some users find it uncomfortable initially, but it is worth the tolerance and before you know it, you’ll love it.

The key is comfort. Be sure the instrument feels good in your hand. Its uses are slicing and dicing vegetables and cutting meats and fish. You must not use a chef’s knife to carve poultry or remove skin from a thick-skinned vegetable like butternut squash.

This is the knife you should favor when it comes to spending. Choose only blades that are full tang (one piece of metal with the blade extending the whole length of the knife. and the handle pieces attached to each side.) The others are not the chefs’ choice.

High choice: Try Mac Knife 8″ Professional Hollow Edge Chef’s Knife.

Lower choice: Shun Sora 8-inch Chef’s Knife:

2. Paring knife

Used for cutting anything that needs “attention to detail”, the paring knife slices, minces, and peels fruits and vegetables. It should be about 3 – 3 1/2 inches. Do not use it for cutting hard vegetables like carrots or parsnips. No need to spend lots of money. Twenty dollars is sufficient.

High Choice: Wüsthof Gourmet 3-inch Paring Knife.

Lower Choice: Victorinox 4-Inch Swiss Classic Paring Knife

3. Serrated Knife

Being able to handle both hard and soft foods, the serrated knife, also known as a bread knife saws through crusty bread or a tomato. The blade averages about 6 inches. The size of the teeth is very important when choosing this knife. The teeth cannot be too big or too small. Compare knives for the size of the teeth.

High Choice: Cutluxe Bread Knife.

If you really prefer a knife set, read this article. It gives you choices, good information, and prices for a set of knives. Read the article.

Final Thought

I suggest that you spend money on the suggested knife categories. If later you develop a need for other knives, you can decide then. I know I need a new paring knife. I actually need two in case one is in the dishwasher. The following video gives you some cutting hints. Recipe: Roasted Sweet Potato Wedges so you can practice cutting. Get Recipe.

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