The 10 Best Knife Sets

Set-of-Kitchen-knives-in-a-knife-block-with-the-chef-knife-laying

If you plan to splurge on any piece of kitchen equipment, consider investing in one of the best knife sets you can afford.

Let’s face it, not much gets done in the kitchen without knives, and you use them every day. It makes sense to buy the best you can afford.

Not only does buying a complete set of knives save you money over picking up separate pieces, but you’ll also save loads of time, and you should never be without the knives you need.

To achieve this, though, you’ll need to focus on choosing a set that matches your requirements. Too many people shopping for knives are seduced by piece count, and they often end up with a drawer full of unused knives.

Keep these simple pointers in mind and you should have no problem navigating the sets we review today:

  • Type of knives included: A chef’s knife is a multipurpose knife with a large blade ideal for a range of chopping tasks. Santoku knives hail from Japan. Like a chef’s knife, santoku knives are all-purpose, but they have a thinner blade and a curved tip. These knives excel at mincing, chopping, and dicing. A paring knife is small – typically 3.5 inches – and works well for small fiddly tasks like coring, peeling, and slicing. A serrated paring knife is ideal if you need to cut citrus fruits or small tomatoes. Utility knives are like small chef’s knives. The small, thin blades allow you to cut chicken bones or small veggies with ease. Bread knives have sharp, serrated edges, letting you power through thick and crusty loaves. These knives can also work well for cutting pineapples or other fruits with fibrous skins. Carving knives are perfect for carving your way through whole roasts.
  • Make sure the set includes everything you need and nothing you don’t: Rather than reflexively choosing the largest set of knives you can find, or associating size with value, instead focus sharply on your cooking techniques and the type of knives you use regularly. As long as a knife set includes a chef’s knife, a paring knife, and a serrated knife, you have all main bases covered. Additionally, western knives usually need less maintenance. You will need to sharpen eastern knives on a whetstone.
  • Storage: If the knife sets you are looking at do not come with a storage block, consider placing inserts in your kitchen drawers, or picking up some magnetic strips for your knives to hang on.

Now, with those factors accounted for, it’s time for our reviews of the 10 best knife sets out there.

Madibarestaurant.com is reader-supported. When you buy via the links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you.

The 10 Best Knife Sets

1. Our #1 Pick: Chicago Cutlery Forged Knife Block Set

Chicago-Cutlery-|-Fusion-17-Piece-Forged-Knife-Block-Set

Features

  • Pieces: 17
  • Weight: 13.1 pounds
  • Dimensions: 14.7 x 8.5 x 9.7 inches

The first knife set today is our overall favorite. This Asian-inspired set of 17 knives includes the following:

  • Chef knife (7.75-inch)
  • Serrated bread knife (7.75-inch)
  • Santoku knife (5-inch, 7-inch)
  • Utility knife (5-inch)
  • Paring knife (3.25-inch)
  • 8 x steak knives (4.5-inch)
  • Sharpening steel
  • Chop assist
  • Chestnut-stained wood block

As you can see, you have all the eastern knives you could want, both for food prep and eating steak with the whole family and guests.

Like all eastern knives, these require a little upkeep, but you get a sharpening steel included for this purpose.

All knives sit in a compact storage block made from stained wood. This allows you to benefit from a sprawling knife set without eating up too much countertop space or overrunning your drawers.

A nifty chop assist tool helps guide you while you’re chopping veggies, and also provides more balance.

If you want a comprehensive set of single-piece knives that will slice through almost any ingredients, this set of forged steel eastern knives from Chicago Cutlery is a must.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Contoured non-slip handles
  • Blades stay sharper for longer
  • Forged design improves balance
  • Some rusting reported

2. Cuisinart Graphix Collection

Cuisinart-C77SS-15P-Graphix-Collection-15-Piece-Cutlery-Knife

Features

  • Pieces: 15
  • Weight: 8.5 pounds
  • Dimensions: 6 x 11 x 14.75 inches

Kitchenware specialist Cuisinart has a wide range of kitchen knives, including this value-packed set of the following 15 pieces:

  • Chef knife (8-inch)
  • Santoku knife (5.5-inch)
  • Bird’s beak paring knife (4.5-inch)
  • Serrated utility knife (3.5-inch)
  • Slicing knife (7-inch)
  • Paring knife (2.75-inch)
  • 6 x steak knives (4.5-inch)
  • Sharpening steel (8-inch)
  • All-purpose shears
  • Block

If you feel this set is too large for your liking, there are two smaller options up for grabs (an 11-piece and a 13-piece set).

One of the prime benefits of these knives is the way the handles are designed to sit snugly in your hand, allowing you to cut and chop for extended periods safely and comfortably.

The blades are made from forged steel, and they are not only super-sharp, but also built to stay sharp for plenty of faithful service.

If pushed to find fault with this set of knives, we would suggest the paring knife could be slightly more robust. You may find the tip of this bends, so handle with care.

In sum, you’re getting a large set of knives that look great, stay sharp, and sit in a space-saving block.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Textured and grippy handles
  • Forged steel blades
  • Sharp and durable
  • Small paring knife is fragile

3. Home Hero Kitchen Knife Set

Home-Hero-17-pcs-Kitchen-Knife-Set-7-Stainless-Steel-Knives

Features

  • Pieces: 17
  • Weight: 4.6 pounds
  • Dimensions: 14.8 x 11.6 x 4.8 inches

Next in line in today’s showcase of the best knife sets is another large batch of 17 pieces, including the following:

  • Chef knife (8.3-inch)
  • Serrated bread knife (8.3-inch)
  • Utility knife (4.8-inch)
  • Paring knife (3.9-inch)
  • 6 x steak knives (4.5-inch)
  • Pizza knife (4.3-inch)
  • Cheese knife (5.9-inch)
  • Sharpener
  • Peeler/grater
  • Scissors
  • Acrylic stand (12 x 9 inches)

Of all the sets we review today, this offering from Home Hero is the most wide-reaching. You get a knife for all conceivable purposes here, and you can display them for all to see in the transparent acrylic block. The striking design makes this knife set a great gift idea.

It isn’t a case of style over substance, though. The stainless steel blades are low maintenance, although the snag is that they could be much sharper.

As long as you don’t mind taking a hit on sharpness in exchange for a sweeping set of knives, you can’t go wrong with Home Hero.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Comprehensive set
  • Great gift idea
  • Responsive customer care
  • Not the sharpest knives

4. Mercer Culinary Forged Starter Set

Mercer-Culinary-M21910-Genesis-4-Piece-Forged-Starter-Set

Features

  • Pieces: 4
  • Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Dimensions: 13.8 x 3.9 x 2 inches

If the above sets of knives are much too large for your needs, this simple starter set from Mercer Culinary certainly isn’t cheap, but you’re getting a set that’s perfectly put-together and German-made.

Expect the following pieces:

  • Santoku knife (7-inch)
  • Utility knife (5-inch)
  • Paring knife (3.5-inch)
  • Nylon roll bag

The travel-friendly nature of this set allows you to take your knives camping or tailgating, or anywhere else you are likely to cook up some food.

Sharp high-carbon steel blades are easy to hone and guaranteed to stay sharp. The knives also feel wonderfully balanced, so you’ll be glad you dug a little deeper for these gems.

The handles deliver the same attention to detail as the blades, and these feel a genuine pleasure to hold.

You shouldn’t experience any issues with rust, corrosion, or staining either completing a winning package and one of the best knife sets you’ll find in a super-crowded vertical.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Compact and travel-friendly set
  • High-carbon German steel
  • Well-balanced knives
  • Not sharp from point to base

5. Cuisinart Advantage Color Collection

Cuisinart-C55-12PCER1-Advantage-Color-Collection-12-Piece-Knife-Set

Features

  • Pieces: 12
  • Weight: 2.5 pounds
  • Dimensions: 2.5 x 7.25 x 14.25 inches

Whether you want to inject some color into the kitchen, or you want to eliminate cross-contamination of food in the kitchen, you’ll appreciate this small set of colored knives from Cuisinart.

The set consists of the following basics:

  • Chef knife (8-inch)
  • Paring knife (3.5-inch)
  • Serrated bread knife (8-inch)
  • Slicing knife (8-inch)
  • Utility knife (6.5-inch)
  • Santoku knife (7-inch)

While at first glance this is not the largest set, the absence of multiple steak knives means you get a wider choice of knives for food prep.

These knives are made of stainless steel, and the blades are treated with a ceramic coating. This inhibits food from sticking to the blade and allows you to seamlessly power through even the most challenging ingredients.

Although the majority of reviews for this set of knives are positive, we found a handful of complaints concerning the sharpness of the blades. If you have exacting standards and you’re looking for pro-grade sharpness, you’ll be disappointed. Most home cooks should find the blades fit for purpose.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Convenient color-coding
  • Ceramic non-stick coating
  • Lifetime guarantee
  • Some issues with sharpness

6. Henckels Statement Kitchen Knife Set

HENCKELS-Statement-Kitchen-Knife-Set-with-Block,-15-pc

Features

  • Pieces: 15
  • Weight: 8.6 pounds
  • Dimensions: 15.25 x 8.75 x 5.25 inches

Not everyone is looking for the cheapest knife set, so if you have a more fluid budget and you prize quality, performance, and aesthetics, consider this set from the Henckels Statement range.

Each 15-piece knife set contains the following:

  • Chef knife (8-inch)
  • Serrated bread knife (8-inch)
  • Santoku knife (7-inch)
  • Serrated utility knife (5-inch)
  • Paring knife (3-inch)
  • 6 x steak knives (4.5-inch)
  • Sharpening steel
  • Kitchen shears
  • Hardwood block

The blades are balanced, durable, and extremely sharp. You get a sharpening steel bundled, and you’ll need to hone the blades regularly to prevent dulling. The complaints in this area are hard to quantify as they could be the result of neglected blades.

Despite the strength and durability, the full-tang build is also lightweight enough that you could spend hours chopping with these knives and not feel weighed down.

Get an all-encompassing set of knives from an industry specialist that don’t just look great but ensure that food prep is a pleasure and not a chore.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Strong yet lightweight
  • Balanced and ergonomic handles
  • Wide variety of knives
  • A few complaints about dullness

7. Farberware Edgekeeper Bamboo Cutlery Set

Farberware-Edgekeeper-21-Piece-Bamboo-Cutlery-Set

Features

  • Pieces: 21
  • Weight: 11.7 pounds
  • Dimensions: 14.6 x 9.25 x 4.9 inches

If you’re hunting for the largest knife set, Farberware serves up a strong contender in the shape of this huge 21-piece set. Expect the following basics and specialist knives:

  • Chef knife (6-inch, 8-inch)
  • Boning knife (6-inch)
  • Serrated bread knife (8-inch)
  • Santoku knife (7-inch)
  • Utility knife (5.5-inch)
  • Paring knife (3.5-inch)
  • Slicer knife (8-inch)
  • Cleaver (6-inch)
  • Bird beak knife (3.5-inch)
  • 8 x steak knives (4.5-inch)
  • Carving fork
  • Shears
  • Bamboo block

The primary draw here is that these knives are self-sharpening, ideal for anyone disinclined to break out the sharpening steel. All you need to do is pop them back into the storage block between uses. When they need sharpening, draw the blade down the integrated sharpener repeatedly and you’ll be slicing through rock-hard veggies like butter.

Not only are these knives highly effective, but they are also easy to look after and maintain. All you need to do is wash them by hand with some mild detergent and dry them immediately afterward.

Backed by a limited lifetime guarantee, you can’t ask for much more in a knife set.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Self-sharpening knives
  • Huge choice
  • Easy to care for
  • Handles poorly constructed

8. Zwilling Signature Knife Set

ZWILLING-Twin-Signature-3-pc-Kitchen-Knife-Set

Features

  • Pieces: 3
  • Weight: 1.04 pounds
  • Dimensions: 10 x 14 x 1 inches

If you have no need at all for a wide array of knives, get these basics in the Zwilling Signature set:

  • Chef knife (8-inch)
  • Utility knife (6-inch)
  • Paring knife (4-inch)

While you don’t get any extras, and there is no storage block included either, you have the core basics for food prep, and the most commonly used knives in any kitchen here.

Lightweight and nicely balanced, you can use these knives for extended spells without feeling fatigued.

The eastern one-piece build ensures the blades are sharp and won’t let you down over time.

Made from steel with a high carbon content, you’ll get no staining or discoloration marring your knives over time, and you’ll be delighted you made your prepping work easier.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Most important knives provided
  • One-piece construction
  • Edges stay sharper for longer
  • Set too small for some

9. Mercer Culinary Genesis Knife Block Set

Mercer-Culinary-Genesis-6-Piece-Forged-Knife-Block-Set

Features

  • Pieces: 6
  • Weight: 8.1 pounds
  • Dimensions: 10 x 4 x 15 inches

Another entry from the Mercer Culinary stable next with this 6-piece set of the following components:

  • Chef knife (8-inch)
  • Serrated bread knife (8-inch)
  • Boning knife (6-inch)
  • Utility knife (5-inch)
  • Paring knife (3.5-inch)
  • Tempered glass block

This is one of the most attractive sets of knives in an otherwise bland market segment. The centerpiece is as striking but functional block fashioned from tempered glass.

The high-carbon blades will make light work of almost any ingredients, and they won’t dull or stain, even after sustained use.

With a full tang running the length of the handle, and a precision-forged build, these knives might not be cheap, but you’ll appreciate where that money went when you start using them.

Aside from some isolated complaints about rust developing, we can’t find much else to knock about this fantastic set of kitchen knives from one of the most reputable brands in the business.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Eye-catching aesthetics
  • Functional block
  • Carbon steel blades
  • Some snags with rusting reported

10. Shun Classic Knife Block Set

Shun-Classic-6-piece-Slim-Knife-Block-Set

Features

  • Pieces: 6
  • Weight: 8.9 pounds
  • Dimensions: 17.6 x 13.8 x 9.4 inches

To round out our quest for the best knife sets out there, we have another small, compact set, this time from Shu Classic. Each sets contains these knives and accessories:

  • Chef knife (8-inch)
  • Santoku knife (7-inch)
  • Paring knife (3.25-inch)
  • Honing steel (9-inch)
  • Kitchen shears
  • Wood block

Another set that skips the steak knives, you gain in the shape of more prep knives, something most people appreciate.

Make sure you hand wash these knives to keep them looking at their best and to prevent any rusting or discoloration.

The double-bevel Japanese blade has a Rockwell hardness of 60 to 61, translating to showstopping performance.

Handles are strong but comfortable, and intelligently designed so they should never come flying from your grip.

Overall, you get a set delivering all the core basics any home cook might need, including some all-purpose kitchen shears. As long as you don’t mind hand washing your knives and keeping them sharpened – a honing steel is provided – then you’re getting one of the most effective and well-constructed sets of knives, even if you need to pay dearly for the privilege.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Elegant design
  • Multilayered construction
  • Hand-sharpened
  • Hand wash only

Conclusion

We very much hope today’s guide to the best knife sets has given you a suitable shortlist of options.

The most important thing you can do when considering a knife set is to take a step back before brandishing your credit card. Ask yourself what knives you need and use – refer to our buying guide above – and then only consider sets offering these knives.

That said, you may decide you want a larger set, and we include plenty of bumper packs with as many as 17 pieces. All that counts is buying what works for you.

Before you head off today, take a moment to bookmark Madiba. We have a very busy content schedule for the coming months. We update our content daily, too, so pop back soon and don’t miss out!

Rate this post

Leave a Comment