Knives are the most important tool in the kitchen without which one cannot even think about managing anything. When it comes to knives, there are a lot of different types of knives available in the market, Each knife has its different usage, design, and blade. These knives are basically designed based on the type of ingredients they will be used on such as vegetables, fruits, or raw meat. There are knives specially meant for a task and then there are knives that are meant for various purposes. The most useful and commonly used knife in the kitchen is what can be used for different purposes and can be used on all ingredients. This best santoku knife review will provide you the details of the best knives under this category which has been used and reviewed by a lot of customers and has proven to be the best in its category.
What is a Santoku knife?
A Santoku knife is a general-purpose knife that originated in Japan. It can be used for multiple purposes and can handle almost all types of ingredients effortlessly. It has a flat edge and a sheepsfoot blade that curves down at an angle approaching 60 degrees at the point. Santoku actually means “3 virtues” or “3 uses”. Many have said that these 3 uses either refer to meat, fish, and vegetables. These are three foods often cut with santoku. People often confuse a Santoku knife with a multipurpose chef’s knife as both of them can be used to handle more than one ingredient. A Santoku knife is generally 5-7 inches long and its wide flat blade is great for chopping. It provides more contact with the board or surface while cutting, leading to even pieces. It is generally used for chopping, dicing, and mincing food and also performs exceptionally well when used on harder ingredients like meat bones. What it really specializes in is cutting very thin slices of food.
How to Choose the Best Santoku Knife
One of the most important factors while buying a santoku knife is the material and how it has been designed. Santoku knives have been around for a long period of time and have been one of the best and traditional blades of Japan. Due to its quality and precision, these knives have now become globally popular and have been one of the favorite knives to use by the chefs. To choose the best Santoku knife, make sure it has been made from high carbon steel, through which your knife will have exceptional strength, which prevents breakage under any kind of pressure. Also, the angled edge should be between 15-20 degrees to make sure you get a sharper blade. Also, your blade should be rust and corrosion resistance and have good edge retention, which is only possible when you have a strong steel construction
1. Yaxell Gou 6-1/2-inch Santoku Knife
Yaxell has been known to be one of the best premium knife makers in the world. It is why this santoku knife has been made with prime finesse and exception quality steel. This Japanese brand uses the best quality Japanese steel to make sure that the blade has strength and durability at the same time. This Santoku knife is made with sg2 steel-clad, including 101 layers of high-carbon stainless steel, producing the layered Damascus look.
The handles of this knife have been made with extremely durable canvas-micarta that has been fastened with three stainless steel rivets. These rivets give better control and a firm grip to the handle while being attached to the tang. Since these are made very high-quality material, they are completely corrosion and stain-resistant. When it comes to the maintenance of the knife, one can be assured that you would not regularly sharpen it with this blade. Also, as per the company, simple hand wash would be more than enough to clean the knife. Once done, make sure to wipe it down with a dry cloth.
- Comfortable and grippy handle
- SG2 steel-clad metal construction provides excellent durability and strength
- Easy and comfortable to use both by professionals and beginners.
- The knife is heavier in weight than other Santoku knives
2. Cangshan TC Series Santoku Knife with Wooden sheath
Cangshan has been one of the most recognized brands in the world when it comes to knives. They have been used Swedish steel, which is much lighter and stronger than any other material. This full tang Santoku blade has been created using high alloy Swedish Sandvik 14C28N Steel with exceptional sharpness, due to this it holds an edge up to 5 times longer than German Steel X50Cr15MoV. These knives have been created and designed using a unique method which is pending patent for Cangshan. This knife has a perfectly and uniquely tapered tang, making each knife comfortable and perfect for precise cutting.
When it comes to handling, the optimum weight balance of the knife makes it perfect to handle both professional and beginners. The well balanced 5-inch handle and 5-inch blade with Rockwell Hardness of 59, make strong and durable. The three rivets hold the black G10 military-grade handle that provides optimum control on the knife with any kind of grip and is also sweat and temperature resistant. Each of these knives comes with a carbonized solid ashwood half open magnetic sheath and has been certified by National Sanitation Foundation including a lifetime warranty.
- High quality Swedish stainless steel gives strength and durability.
- Solid G10 military-grade handle
- Comes with a carbonized solid ashwood half open magnetic sheath
- Very affordable
- Not good to be used on meats
3. Victorinox Swiss Army Cutlery Fibrox Pro Santoku Knife,
Victorinox is widely known for providing some of the best quality blades at affordable prices. Most popular for its swiss army knife, the brand is also known to produce some very good quality knives. This Santoku knife in particular combines the features of a cleaver and a chef’s knife with a unique shape that allows it to be used as a spatula to scoop up whatever you are chopping. It comes with a Granton edge that avoids food from sticking and minimizes friction.
The knife comes with an ergonomic fibrox pro handle for a non-slip grip in any condition. What makes this knife different from others is its weight and how it has been balanced to provide optimum control. The stainless steel 7-inch blade has been certified with the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) standards for public health protection. Made in Switzerland, these knives come with a lifetime warranty and promise to last you for a very long time. If you are looking for a premium quality knife at the most affordable price, then this is the one for you.
- Premium quality at affordable price
- Long-lasting sharpness
- Non-slip ergonomic grip for perfect handling
- Handle feel is kind of plastic
4. Zelite Infinity Santoku Knife 7 Inch
Zelite has been really setting up the standard in the market of the premium knife. Super sharp blade, stunning design, comfortable handling are just some of the features that this knife provides to the user. The premium quality Santoku knife has been made form Japanese AUS10 Super Steel with 67-layer High Carbon Stainless Steel that incorporates a Hollow Ground Blade. The knife also has an exquisite Tsunami Rose Damascus Pattern and Liquid Nitrogen Tempering ensuring Long Lasting Performance.
When it comes to the durability and strength of the knife, it directly competes with the most premium knives in the market and has a blade that is Stain & Rust Resistant. The knife has a G10 military-grade handle which has been triple riveted for extra durability. The ergonomically designed round handle provides optimum grip and comfortable handling. The knife can easily handle any kind of fruit, vegetable, and meat. It comes with a lifetime warranty and will be repaired or replaced as needed. The knife has a rare tapered bolster for extreme comfort and perfect balance.
- Made with Imported Japanese AUS10 Super Steel for durability and strength
- Superfine and slim profile blade which prevents rust and corrosion
- Military-grade triple-riveted handle for maximum control
- Edge needs to be sharpened regularly
5. Shun Cutlery Premier 7” Santoku Knife
If you are looking for a premium Santoku knife, then you will definitely come across Shun knives. Shun has been one of the most trusted companies to provide premium quality knives. In fact, they have some of the best quality knives when compared to its competitors. This Asian inspired Santoku knife is sure to be your favorite. The knife is extremely light, which is one of the major features of Shun. being lighter gives it the ability to easily maneuver and provide maximum control. The knife can be used both in a person and a professional kitchen.
The knife has been made using the VG-MAX “super steel, which has 34 layers on each side of stainless Damascus cladding on each side. VG-Max steel is a combination of metals used exclusively by Shun. The knife also comes with a walnut colored pakkawood handle that fits every hand and any kind of grip. The blade has a hammered finish, which makes sure nothing sticks to the blade while in use. This knife can be used for any kind of task in the kitchen and it will surely not disappoint.
- Made from super strong VG Max steel
- Easy to grip pakkawood handle
- Light and agile to use
- The chipping issue faced by some customers
6. Wusthof Classic Hollow Edge Santoku Knife, 7-Inch
German steel is world-renowned for the type of quality it has. German steel is naturally very strong and is used to make a majority of the knives in the world. One of the most famous and known german knife making brands in the world is Wusthof. The brand has been known to provide some of the slimmest and the sleekest blades in the world. Their knives are up to 20% stronger and sharper, although being slimmer than other blades in the category. This santoku knife is no exception to the high-quality blades they have been offering in the market.
This full tang knife has been forged using high carbon and high-quality German steel, which makes sure that the blade does not break under high pressure. The ergonomic handle is made of highly durable synthetic material – Polyoxymethylene (POM) – which has a tighter molecular structure to resist fading and discoloration. The knife also comes with full bolster to safeguard your hands and it has been forged from a single piece of chromium-molybdenum-vanadium steel.
- POM handle gives exceptional grip to the user and the ergonomic design gives better handling control
- Made from high carbon German stainless steel
- The very slim and sleek blade profile
- 20% shaper and superior edge retention
- The weight balance seems to be a bit off
7. DALSTRONG Santoku Knife – Shogun Series
If you are ever confused about the brand of knives you should go for, then you can blindly trust Dalstrong in this case. You can get one of the best quality knives from Dalstrong which are not only strong but speak of premium through every feature provided. The beautifully designed and carved blade is made out of ultra-sharp AUS-10V Japanese super steel cutting core at 62+ Rockwell hardness ensures extraordinary performance and edge retention. The interior steel is painstakingly sandwiched between 66 layers of premium high-carbon stainless steel, resulting in exceptional strength, durability, and stain resistance.
This is no ordinary santoku knife, as it has a scalpel-like edge and is hand finished to a staggering 8-12°degree angle per side using the traditional 3-step Honbazuke method. The knife has been nitrogen called to provide extra strength, preventing it from any damage. The premium quality G10 military-grade handle will handle anything you throw at it. Being sweat and temperature resistant, the handle will provide you great grip in any condition. With a lifetime guarantee on their blades, this would be one investment you would be really happy about.
- Superior quality AUS-10V stainless steel with high strength and durability
- Beautifully crafted G10 handle for all-time comfort
- Optimum weight balance for perfect handling and maneuverability.
- Full tang for superb robustness and triple riveted for even more resilience.
- Food sticks to the blade
8. Mac Knife Superior Santoku Knife
This knife is a great multi-purpose tool that features a sharp edge which is meant to be used on most fruits, vegetables, and meats. Mac knives are known as some of the sharpest knives, They have razor-like edges for effortless slicing, they are hard so they stay sharp longer. The 6 and a half inch knife has a supreme quality build and has a 2mm slim blade, which is rust-resistant and made out of high carbon stainless steel. The blade has excellent edge retention and a beautiful satin-like finish. The blade is exceptionally sharp at the price it is offered at.
Although it comes at an affordable price, the built quality of this knife does not lack even by the smallest bit. The razor-sharp edge and pakkawood handle on the knife give it exceptional quality and make it one of the best knives in the market. The knives are meant to be wasted just by hand and cleaned with a dry cloth to increase life. These knives are made in Japan and use the traditional Japanese knife making technique, which provides the best quality katana edge blades.
- Best quality build and construction. Highly durable and strong
- Rust-resistant blades for increased life
- Pakka wood handle for comfortable handling
- Customer complaints of rust if not kept dry
9. Miyabi Kaizen Hollow Edge Santoku Knife
When you talk about high-quality Japanese blades, there is no way you can miss the name of Miyabi. Miyabi has been one of the more known knife brands from Japan, who are known to manufacture the best quality premium knives for professional chefs. Their premium quality is what keeps them popular and a lot of professionals using their knives. This Santoku knife in particular is made out of super-strong VG10 steel, which has high carbon content, giving the knife excrement well built and strong character. The knife has been designed with a thin Japanese blade profile.
The manufacturing process also includes the hand honing process, which is not only traditional but also increases the sharpness of the blade. The blade has been hand-honed using the three-step Honbazuke process to a 9.5 to 12-degree edge. The CRYODUR blade is ice-hardened to Rockwell 60 and comes with 65 layers of Damascus steel which makes a flower Damascus design. The Miyabi Kaizen series has been specifically designed with a lot of minute details and precision to provide exceptional performance. The D-shaped handle made of black linen Micarta provides an ergonomic design and exceptional grip.
- The high quality VG10 super steel used in construction
- High-quality handle
- Made using the traditional Japanese technique
- Heavier in weight
10. CUTCO Model 1766 Santoku Knife
Cutco has been one of the older brands that have made a name for itself in the Japanese knives market. What differs Cutco from other knife brands is the kind of quality they deliver at the price. Cutco has some good quality value to offer money knives and you will be happy with your purchase. The full tang, triple-riveted construction of the knife gives it a lot of strength and durability, along with the Nickel-silver rivets. The blade is popular to be very strong and durable due to the 440A High-Carbon, Stainless Steel that has been used to make the knife.
Although the santoku knife is a Japanese style knife, it is made in the USA by American Craft Workers and Cutco forever guarantees free repair and replacement for a lifetime. The weight balance of the knife is what makes it exceptionally good while handling. You will not feel any kind of pressure on the hands due to weight. It is why the handling and maneuverability of this bike are much more than others in this range.
- Use of 440A High-Carbon, Stainless Steel, which makes the blade much stronger and durable.
- Full tang triple-riveted construction increased control and strength.
- Free lifetime repair and replacement
- Blades could have been sharper
Things to Consider Before Buying a santoku knife
The Santoku knives listed above are some of the best available options in the market and selecting either one will not leave you disappointed. However, there are certain things that one needs to understand before buying a good quality knife. There are a lot of different features in a Santoku knife which makes it sharp and last for a long period of time. So before buying a knife, make sure that you have an idea of what kind of features should exist in it, to get a durable and long-lasting knife. Let’s have a look at some of the most important features that a premium Santoku knife should offer to the consumer. No matter where you buy the knife from, if your knives do not have such features, then you would not be making a value for money deal.
When it comes to Blade material, the best Santoku knives are made from high carbon stainless steel to make sure that the blade has exceptional strength and durability. Different brands use different types of steel such as their own special mixture of patented steel, Japanese steel German steel, etc. However, the authentic Santoku blade is made out of pure Japanese steel, that is made using the traditional Japanese knife-making techniques, where they are hand homes for excellent finish and quality.
Length of the Blade
When it comes to the Santoku knife, the length of the blade majorly depends on the type of usage it provides. Since it is a flat edge blade that is used for precision and thin cutting and chopping, the normal blade length that most of the people use is 7 inches. However, one can go from anywhere to 5-7 inches or more, depending on the type of handling they want and what they will use it for. A 7-inch Santoku knife is made to fit all hands and is one of the best sizes that one can buy in a Santoku knife. It provides a perfect balance between the weight and size of the blade.
There are majorly two types of handles that you can find in a knife. Either a pakkawood or other wooden type of handle, or a POM handle with resin. Both handles are different in terms of grip and design. Pakka wood handles or similar wooden type handles are made to provide a premium quality look and ergonomic handling, while POM handles are not as premium as pakkawood handles, but the resin structure on it provides exceptional grip which is completely non-slip and provides comfortable handling.
Cutting Edge Angle
This would depend on the brand which is manufacturing the knife and would generally range between the cutting angle of 15-16 degrees, which provides the perfect cutting angle and makes it easier to handle any kind of ingredient. The cutting angle makes sure that the knife is smoother while being used and easily cuts through anything.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a santoku knife best used for?
A: Santoku knife is a general-purpose knife that can be used to handle any type of ingredients. It has been designed to handle fruits, vegetables, meat, and much more. These are traditional Japanese knives that have been built strong and made to last for a long time.
Is a chef’s knife or a santoku knife better suited for everyday cooking?
A: Both the chef’s knife and santoku knife can be used for the same task. Since both of them can be used as a multipurpose knife, anyone would suffice. However, if you do not want a heavier knife, then getting a Santoku knife is fine. Also, if you are looking for a knife that can cut and chop the thinnest of a piece with precision, even then a Santoku knife is the one you should go for.
What are the functions of santoku knives?
A: A santoku knife can be used for various purposes. However, it was made to cut and chop things with precision. The knife is great at cutting thin and similar pieces of ingredients, thanks to its flat edge blade that provides maximum contact with the surface.
What size santoku knife is best?
A: The most common size that people would prefer to use is 7 inches. One can get a Santoku knife anywhere from 5-7 inches and even more. However, a 7 inches knife is the size in between due to which it carries optimum weight balance and good enough size. Getting anything lower or higher in size than 7 inches would be only for a specific purpose or choice.
From the products reviewed above, we can easily see that the best Santoku knives can be used to cut down a lot of different ingredients and is one of the best multipurpose knives. People who want to decorate their dishes with some beautiful slices of vegetables, fruits, or even fish tend to prefer the Santoku for that same reason. If you are looking for a premium Japanese blade, something that can do a lot of things and can be used for multiple ingredients, then getting a santoku knife is an excellent option. If you want to learn more about Santoku knives or any other knife then do read our other knife review articles.