Santoku knives are a type of Japanese cooking knife. They are extremely versatile, able to chop, slice, and dice anything with ease. A good santoku knife is a perfect addition to any kitchen, but how can you find the best santoku knife for you?
Don’t worry, because we’ve got you covered. We’ve gathered 7 of the best santoku knives out there, and taken a look at all their pros and cons.
Not only that, but we’ve included a buyer’s guide to help you make your choice, and an FAQ section to answer any questions you might have. So let’s get right into it and look at the best santoku knives on the market!
OUR TOP PICK
Miyabi Birchwood Santoku Knife
Mac Knife MSK-65 Professional Hollow Edge Santoku
OUR TOP PICK
Tojiro DP 6.7″ Santoku
The Tojiro DP Santoku Knife is a high-quality knife that excels at practically anything you could want from a santoku. It’s made of sturdy Japanese steel, and the blade shape makes it ideal for slicing vegetables or cutting through thick foods like chicken breasts.
Not only that, but the knife is 50/50 beveled, meaning it’s suitable for both right- and left-handed people.
This knife is also incredible value for money, making it the perfect choice for anyone looking to fill out their knife rack on a budget. Despite its low cost, the knife is still built with durable and high-quality materials; you don’t need to worry about the blade losing its edge just because the price is low!
The handle is a little chunkier than other santoku knives, but it is still comfortable and easy to use.
The Tojiro DP is a great wallet-friendly santoku knife and is ideal for anyone who wants a good-quality santoku without breaking the bank.
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- The high-quality Damascus steel is as sharp as it is strong; that is to say, very sharp!
- Its sculpted wooden handle is comfortable and non-slip for ease of use.
- Well-balanced and versatile, this santoku excels at cutting, slicing, and chopping.
- Its high price is hard to justify for most people.
- The point has a steeper angle which makes it less effective for certain purposes.
Mac Knife MSK-65 Professional Hollow Edge Santoku
This santoku knife from Mac’s Professional line is an absolutely delightful tool. No matter what you do, it makes your job easier and more enjoyable.
It’s light, well-balanced, and easy to handle. It’s also sharp as a tack and comfortable to hold. You could easily use this knife to cut carrots, break down a chicken, or fillet a whole fish.
With a price tag of around $120, this santoku is very reasonably priced. Additionally, its 50/50 bevel makes it easy to use and simple to sharpen.
The scalloping along the blade prevents food from sticking and keeps chopping smooth, and the tempered steel helps this santoku maintain its edge for far longer than the average chef’s knife.
If you want a solid santoku that does everything you ask of it, then this is the knife for you. Simple, well-made, and reasonably priced, it’s hard to go wrong with the Mac Knife MSK-65.
- The knife is lightweight, easy to use, and slices through everything easily.
- It’s compact enough to fit in most kitchens, so you don’t have to worry about carrying it around.
- The blade is extremely sharp and will keep its edge for years.
- Given its simplicity, this santoku could be a bit cheaper.
- It is not dishwasher safe and needs to be hand-washed.
Shun Classic Blonde 7″ Santoku Knife
If you’re looking to splash out on a stylish and luxury santoku, then the Shun Classic Blonde santoku knife has got you covered.
Crafted from high-quality Pakkawood, this Santoku knife features an elegant and ergonomic design and comes honed to perfection.
The 16-degree angle to the blade is shallower than the typical santoku, and gives it a much sharper cutting edge.
This knife also features a full tang blade, which means that the blade extends all the way into the handle.
This makes the knife sturdier and more durable and gives you additional control over the blade. And to top it all off, the stylish wooden handle gives you a strong grip and looks great.
It might be a bit pricier compared to other similar-quality santokus, but the Shun Classic Blonde is worth every penny.
With its sturdy construction, premium materials, and attractive design, this is definitely one of the best santoku knives out there.
- It looks great, performs well, and is built to last.
- The 68 layers of Damascus steel make the blade durable and sharp.
- Its full tang handle makes it even stronger and easier to handle.
- This santoku is a bit heavier than others, which can make it difficult to use.
- It is notably pricier than other santoku knives without many improvements to justify the higher cost.
Mercer Culinary Genesis Forged Santoku Knife
Mercer’s Culinary Genesis Forged santoku is unmatched in terms of excellent value for the money. With a blade made of high-quality stainless steel, it performs better than other knives that cost two or three times more.
The blade is rust-proof, corrosion-resistant, and scalloped to prevent food from sticking to the knife. It is also incredibly sharp, with a taper-ground edge that helps maintain its sharpness and keeps the knife stable.
With a full tang blade for added durability, you’d be hard-pressed to find a knife that can keep up with the Mercer Culinary Genesis’ performance while coming even remotely close to its value.
There are very few downsides to this knife. However, it is heavier than other santoku knives, and you can’t clean it in the dishwasher. Apart from that, however, you can’t go wrong with this fantastic santoku.
- The incredibly low price makes it great value for money.
- It is high-quality in terms of both its design and its materials, outperforming far more expensive knives.
- The blade is rust-, stain-, and corrosion-resistant to keep the knife in great shape for years to come.
- The knife is on the heavier side due to its full tang and can be tricky to use with precision.
- You have to hand-wash the knife, as putting it in the dishwasher may lead to damage.
Wüsthof Classic Hollow Edge Santoku
Wüsthof is one of the biggest names in knife-making, and their Classic Hollow Edge santoku knife proves that they deserve their recognition. While this knife is a bit pricier than others, it more than makes up for it through its quality and craftsmanship.
The blade has been hollow ground, giving it an extremely thin profile and making it easy to sharpen. Its unique design allows you to slice through vegetables, meat, and fish with ease.
While it isn’t the lightest santoku knife around, it’s definitely not the heaviest either. The knife is well-balanced and easy to use, and if you’re able to splash out a bit then it’s absolutely worth it.
- This versatile knife is perfect for all sorts of uses, from chopping vegetables to slicing meat.
- The high-quality forged steel has been hollow ground for an exceptionally sharp and durable edge.
- Its molded Santoprene handle is comfortable and gives you a strong grip for added precision.
- This knife costs more than other knives of similar quality and can be considered too expensive for what you get.
- The thin edge of the blade can feel too flexible while cutting tougher vegetables and meat.
MITSUMOTO SAKARI Satoku
This beautifully-designed santoku pairs affordability with incredible functionality and quality. The MITSUMOTO SAKARI is a fantastic santoku knife, and its low price tag is almost too good to be true.
Made of a blend of molybdenum and vanadium, this santoku knife’s dimpled blade is durable and will keep its edge for years to come. Additionally, it has a large taper that makes it great for chopping quickly and efficiently, without any risk of the blade dulling.
The attractive handle is made of rosewood and has an ergonomic octagonal shape that makes this santoku easy to hold and can be controlled with maximum precision.
The longer 7.5″ blade is extremely effective in all manners of slicing, dicing, chopping, and filleting. With its durable construction, razor-sharp edge, and gorgeous appearance, it’s hard to go wrong with this santoku.
Top it all off with a price tag of less than $70, and what more could you possibly ask for?
- An incredibly low price for such a high-quality santoku.
- The sharp blade and comfortable handle outperform much more expensive knives.
- It looks great with its dimpled blade and rosewood handle.
- The handle can be uncomfortable for some due to its octagonal shape.
- Unlike other less-tapered santoku knives, this one can be trickier to sharpen.
Best Santoku Knives Buyer’s Guide
Now that we’ve taken a look at 7 of the best santoku knives out there, it’s time to start thinking about which one to choose.
But before you make your pick, there are a few things you need to consider first. Here are some things to bear in mind while you’re choosing the best santoku knife for you.
When shopping for a santoku knife, you’ll want to pay attention to the size of the blade. A larger blade means it will cut bigger pieces of food faster, but it also requires more effort when using it.
Standard santoku knives measure at 7 inches, which is the optimum length for keeping the santoku efficient and strong while staying as precise as possible.
However, some santoku knives can be longer or shorter. For example, the Tojiro DP is shorter than the average santoku. While this makes it lighter and more precise, it isn’t as effective at cutting lots of things quickly.
The angle of the santoku is also important. Santoku knives tend to have shallower grinds on the blade, which make them much sharper.
However, this can be to the knife’s detriment as it is easier to damage a knife with a thinner blade.
Keep in mind that the santoku should have a shallower angle on the blade (typically around 15 degrees), but not too shallow to make sure the edge maintains its sharpness.
While less important than some other aspects of the knife, you should still pay attention to the material of the santoku. Typically, the most common material you’ll find for santoku knives is a form of stainless steel.
However, models like the Miyabi Birchwood and the Shun Classic Blonde are made with Damascus steel, a form of folded steel that gives the knives additional strength and sharpness. Meanwhile, the MITSUMOTO SAKARI uses a high-tech alloy to give the knife its incredible edge.
The handle material is also important, and there are benefits and drawbacks to each material. Wooden handles may be some people’s preference, but they are also tough and can feel uncomfortable to hold.
Rubber handles are better for a non-slip grip but are harder to clean. Finally, metal and synthetic handles are usually ergonomically molded, but they add additional weight to the knife and can make it unwieldy.
Most knives use a 50/50 bevel, which means that the blade is evenly distributed on both sides. This makes the knife suitable for use by both right-handed and left-handed people, as there isn’t any difference between the two sides of the knife.
However, many Japanese knives have an uneven bevel, such as 70/30 or 60/40. This means they’re only suitable for one dominant hand. While most, if not all, of the santoku knives on this list come in the standard 50/50 bevel, you should still be aware that some santoku may be different.
The bevel of the santoku also affects how you sharpen it. While a 50/50 bevel knife is easy to sharpen in standard knife sharpeners, you won’t be able to use one to sharpen a santoku with an uneven bevel. You’ll have to use a specialized or single-sided sharpener to avoid damaging the santoku while you sharpen it.
There you have it, 7 of the best santoku knives out there. All of these knives would make a great addition to your kitchen and are versatile and effective at practically anything you could want to use them for.
Whichever one of these santoku knives you pick, you’ll definitely be making the right choice. Now all that’s left for you to do is choose!
Frequently Asked Questions
A chef’s knife is a general-purpose kitchen knife used for chopping, dicing, mincing, slicing, etc. They are one of the most common and versatile knives and are incredibly useful in their own right.
Santoku knives, meanwhile, tend to be shorter and sharper than a chef’s knife. They are better at slicing and chopping, able to cut through lots of tough foods in no time at all.
Santoku knives are also different shapes; while chef’s knives are long with a tapered and pointed tip, a santoku has a wider blade that tapers down to a steeper tip. A santoku also has a thinner edge with a more shallow angle, which makes them much sharper than normal knives.
Santoku knives are versatile and can be used for all sorts of purposes. These include cutting vegetables, fruits, fish, meats, and even cheese. While they aren’t meant to replace a chef’s knife, they offer a similar amount of versatility and are much more precise cutting tools.
A santoku specializes in efficiency and is best used to cut up lots of ingredients quickly and effectively.
Most santoku knives you will find will have a 50/50 beveled edge, which means they can be sharpened like any other knife. However, santoku knives with an uneven bevel will need to be sharpened differently to avoid dulling or even damaging the edge.
To sharpen one of these santoku knives, you should use a whetting stone or specialized sharpener.
These still require skill to use, however, and you may be better off getting a professional to sharpen the knife for you. Additionally, some manufacturers offer lifetime free sharpening so you don’t need to worry about doing it yourself.