Most households always have that single knife esteemed to meet all the demands of food preparation. But is it as effective? Professional chefs advocate for the use of a variety of knives for regular and unique tasks. You see food preparation involves different stages, and each of them requires various tools. Having a block of knife sets is critical to any food preparation process as it makes it easier.
Top Picks Summary
- AmazonBasics Premium Eighteen-Piece Knife Block Set
- Wusthof Classic Seven-Piece Knife Block Set
- Cuisinart Multi-color Knife Set
- Vremi 10-piece Knife Set
- Mercer Culinary Knife Block Set
- Zwilling J.A. 11-Piece Henckels Knife Block Set
- HomeHero Stainless Steel Knife Set
Block sets consist of different shapes of knives stored in a convenient storage block. The blocks have an array of all-purpose knives as well as special-purpose knives. When choosing block knife sets, however, it is essential to choose one that meets your cooking requirements. Here’s a guide to help you:
Guide for Choosing the Best Block Knife Sets
The sharpness of the blade determines if it is worth buying. You don’t want to buy a set with only two sharp knives as the others collect dust. When buying a block set, you need to make the best of the bargain.
Forged knives are incredibly sharp and are known to hold their edge for a long time. They also don’t rust, or react to acidic foods. Laminated blades, on the other hand, are made of high-carbon steel wedged between two layers of softer stainless steel. Some block sets also have stamped steel blades which are incredibly delicate and grow dull fast.
The Shape of the Knife
Be sure to purchase block sets that will help you accomplish most cutting tasks. As such, you want to avoid buying a set just because it looks good. Unless you are certain, you will use every knife on the set, avoid buying some overly expensive knife block sets. Here are the three regular knives you will find in block sets:
Utility knife: It is a small two or four-inch knife suitable for performing everyday tasks like cutting fruits, small veggies, trimming the fat from meat, mincing herbs and slicing a wedge of hard cheese. Utility knives are longer and more versatile than the tiny paring knife which comes off a little short for some tasks.
Chef’s knife: It is a sizeable all-purpose knife used to cut chicken, chop veggies, slice meat, mince garlic, among other tasks. It is incredibly versatile, and it is available in different lengths (5-10 inches). When buying a block set, you need to choose one that feels comfortable in your hand and get the job done fast. Longer knives provide a larger cutting space. Also, make a few cutting motions to find out if it feels comfortable in your hand. The handle should be comfortable too.
Serrated knife: This kind is ideal for slicing bread, cutting soft fruits and vegetables like tomatoes, and slicing roasts. Be sure to look for an affordable option as most serrated knives are not easy to re-sharpen.
Several specialized knives make great additions to any block knife sets. Some are rarely necessary for a kitchen’s everyday use and only serve as attractive displays. They include:
Kitchen shears: They are an excellent addition when you need to cut accessories
Carving knife: For people who plates food before serving a carving knife is a bonus
Bread knife: It doubles up as a tomato and pastry knife
Material of Construction
Renowned knife manufacturers take pride in proprietary metal formals for constructing high-quality knives. A range of elements and metals add unique properties to the end product including ability to hold sharpness, durability, and the ability to resist pitting and staining.
Knives made of carbon steel are the most common as they have a strong build. However, carbon steel is prone to rust and easily reacts to acidic foods. Another type is the stainless steel knife which is a mixture of carbon, iron, chromium and other elements. It is this mixture that gives stainless steel knives resilience and durability.
Ceramic knives, on the other hand, are lightweight, extremely sharp and do not dull easily. But just like other ceramic objects, the knife shatters easily when dropped. Another downside to ceramic knives is that they are difficult to sharpen. You may need to send them to the manufacturer to a specialist to sharpen them.
You also need to look at the material used to make the handle. Most knives have wooden handles while others are made of plastic, metal and composites. Wooden handles look great but warp easily. Knives made of composite or plastic are comfortable to hold and have a firm grip.
Type of Construction
Different terms describe the construction of a knife: high-carbon, full tang, forged, stamped among others. Forged knives are the most common and are considered the best quality. This is because they are made of individual metal pieces and molded under intense heat to form them into shape. Consequently, forged knives become durable, resilient, balanced and maintain sharpness for a long time.
Stamped knives are carved out of flattened sheets of steel and the edges sharpened. They are less expensive and don’t hold their edges as well as forged knives. The blade is also extremely flexible and lighter hence ideal for tasks like boning.
You don’t want it to take up a lot of countertop space. If you have a small kitchen, buy an upright knife block with a small footprint. Alternatively, invest in a wall-mounted magnetic knife holder if you don’t want to buy a knife block.
You also need to look at that part of the knife extending to the handle. Knives with a full tang have the metal from the blade extending within the entire handle. The advantage of knives with a full tang is that they have balance. The handle is also heavier, giving you better control and stability.
Knives with partial tangs have tangs extending along the top of the handle. These are also called rat-tail tangs, and they have an extremely thin tail of metal extending into the handle and are fully enclosed within it.
- Cooking style: Think about the type of meals you cook and the knives you need for the food preparation process. For example, if you are vegetarian, you don’t want to go buying a boning knife
- Comfort: You need to feel comfortable using the knife. Mimic the rocking motion and slicing to find out if the knife feels balanced in your hand
Reviews of The Best Block Knife Sets
We have already looked at what to look for when buying block knife sets. Now we look at some of the best block knife sets you should consider buying:
AmazonBasics Premium Eighteen-Piece Knife Block Set
This eighteen-piece knife set provides a variety of knives that meet all your cutting and chopping needs. The blades cut with so much ease as they are quite sharp. The handles also provide a firm grip while keeping your hands extremely comfortable even after prolonged use.
The most common knives you will find include the eight-inch slicing knife, the six-inch boning knife, the eight-inch bread knife, the 3.5-inch paring knife and the seven-inch santoku knife. The set also comes with kitchen shears, a sharpener and a storage block for holding the knives.
You will also love the fine-edged blades carefully tapered to ensure precise cutting to produce perfectly trimmed pieces for your salads. The blades are made of high-quality steel hence protected from rust and stains.
Both the blades and the handles remain balanced when cutting so you are confident of maximum control whenever you are using the blades.
- Ergonomic handle
- A fine-edged blade that retains sharpness
- Up to 18 knives to choose from
- Can only be hand-washed
- Feels a bit heavy
Wusthof Classic Seven-Piece Knife Block Set
Chop, slice and cut like a pro using this deluxe knife set one of the most respected manufacturers in cutlery-Wusthof. The knives are equipped with high-impact synthetic handles which are pretty comfortable to hold and more durable than wood.
The seven-piece set consists of five knives (8-inch bread, 6-inch Kiritsuke prep, 8-inch chef, 3.5-inch paring and 5-inch serrated utility knife). What’s more, you can pick from six different block styles including Walnut, Bamboo, Acacia and Black.
Wusthof boasts in produced well-crafted blades. It explains the high-quality blades on this set. They are made of high-carbon stainless steel polished and buffed by hand. Also, you will note that the cutting edge is more tapered to reduce drag when cutting food and eliminate any additional effort required.
Also, Wusthof uses precision edge technology that enhances the sharpness of the blade by 20% to ensure it lasts twice as long.
- Does not take up much counter space
- Hand-crafted to precision
- Lifetime warranty
- It is expensive
Cuisinart Multi-color Knife Set
If you have an eye for color, this block set makes an excellent addition to your kitchen. Regardless of the bold colors, the knives cut with such precision as any regular home knife. Of course, it would not replace a professional-grade knife set, but for the casual kitchen chef, the knives work just fine.
The block set has six knives including an 8’’ chef knife, 8’’serrated bread knife, 8’’ slicing knife, 6.5-inch utility knife, seven-inch Santoku knife and a 3.5-inch paring knife. Additionally, the blades are made of stainless steel hence totally rust-resistant.
The different colors eliminate the probability of cross-contamination when preparing food. The set also comes with matching blade guards.
- Blades are sturdy
- Blades are rust-resistant
- Color coating is not sticky
- An eye sore for people who don’t like color
Vremi 10-piece Knife Set
If you are shopping on a budget, Vremi’s 10-piece knife set is an excellent buy. The set consists of five knives: a five-inch yellow utility, a 3.5-inch paring, 8-inch serrated and 8-inch chef knife. The blades are made of high-quality stainless steel hence resistant to rust and stain.
Also, they are equipped with a partial tang, and the plastic handles are labelled BPA-free. Similarly, the sheaths are BPA-free and match the color of the corresponding knife. This feature comes in handy when you want to store the knives in a drawer to save on counter space.
- Easy to clean
- Equipped with individual sheaths
- Become dull quickly
- Not are durable
Mercer Culinary Knife Block Set
If most of your cutlery consists of glass, the Mercer Culinary knife block set is an excellent addition. It gives your kitchen space a break from the monotonous wooden block sets while providing a range of functional knives.
The block consists of a 5’’ utility knife, a 3.5’’ paring knife, 8’’ chef and bread knife and a six-inch boning knife. What’s more, if you don’t like the glass block, there’s a woodblock set tempered with glass. Both blocks are transparent, allowing you to see where the knife is located.
The blades are made of high-carbon steel material which is resistant to rust, corrosion and discoloration. The knives have full-tang blades that extend into the Santoprene handle which provides a firm grip. Also, each knife has a bolster that offers additional strength and balance.
- Remains sharp for a long time
- Comes in an attractive glass block
- Glass attracts fingerprint smudges
Zwilling J.A. 11-Piece Henckels Knife Block Set
It is another German-made knife block set crafted to precision. The 11-piece set consists of an 8-inch chef, 6-inch utility, 4-inch paring, 8-inch bread, and 5-inch serrated utility knife. It also comes with a 2.5-inch peeler and one 4.5-inch steak knife. Other items include sharpening steel, a pair of shears and the wooden block for storing the knives.
The handles are made of polymer, making it easy to hold and grip. Additionally, the knives have a full tang as it runs through the handle compared to cheap alternatives. And as with other German-made knives, the JA Henckels is hand-honed hence extremely sharp.
What’s more, the knives are stamped. This means they are cut out from a large metal sheet hence their moderate weight compared to forged knives. Additionally, the knives are ice-hardened, which keeps them from staining and chipping.
- Remain extremely sharp after prolonged use
- Are ice-hardened to keep them from chipping and staining
- Are lightweight
- The blades are fragile
- The large block slots are not made to fit specific knives
- Extremely expensive
HomeHero Stainless Steel Knife Set
This block set is unique compared to others we have discussed in that it creates the illusion of floating knives. The knives come in a transparent acrylic knife block which makes them visible when stashed in the block.
The 14-piece knife set consists of basic knives, a chef’s knife with a curved blade for more efficient chopping. It also includes a carving knife for cutting thin slices of fish, meat and poultry. The bread knife comes in handy for home baking projects. The blade takes on the shape of a scallop, making it easy to make clean cuts on loaves of bread, pizzas, and burger buns. The set also includes a dual sharpener for honing and sharpening knives.
- Handles are equipped with TPR protective coating
- Steak knives come serrated for hassle-free cutting
- The TPR coating chips off fast
- Difficult to pull out the knives from the holder
- The holder cracks easily as it is made of plastic