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Best cleaver 2018 – [Buyer’s Guide]

Last Updated September 1, 2020

Charlie OliverLooking for ways to bring your cleaver to the next level? Then you’ve come to the right place. I’m Charlie Oliver. Here are the best cleaver for 2018 – based on my own expert opinion, feature sets, prices, and overall popularity.

My main objective is to write article on these subject so that buyers like you can have the best assistance and education in making that next purchase. In this section we provide our readers with a comparison table of our top picks. Scroll past the table for a closer look at each of the 3 best cleaver in our review section.

Best cleaver of 2018

So, what exactly would anyone want to know about cleaver? I know most of us don’t really care much about the history and the origin, all we want to know is which of them is the best. Of course, I will spare you the history and go straight on to the best cleaver. I have taken the initiative to educate you on the top three best cleaver that you can buy this year.

The best cleaver will make your fairytale dreams come true! There is a wide range of products available on the market today, and below I have reviewed 3 of the very best options.

Test Results and Ratings

Rank №1 №2 №3
Total 4.8 4.5 4.3
5 points
5 points
5 points
5 points
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4 points
4 points
4 points
4 points
5 points
4 points
4 points
Awards 1
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How to save up to 86%? Here is little trick.

You must visit the page of sales. Here is the link. If you don’t care about which brand is better, then you can choose the cleaver by the price and buy from the one who will offer the greatest discount.



№1 – CPK Elite 7″ Professional Cleaver Knife Razor Sharp Stainless Steel Blade – Meat Cleaver-Butcher knife – Chopper – Vegetable Cutter + Metal Soap Hand Odor Removing in a Gift Box for Home Kitchen

CPK Elite 7

This cleaver is amazing, It cuts through meat easily. It is also convenience for cutting, mincing, slicing, and dicing. With an incredibly sharp and heavy blade, not only can this cleaver get through the toughest meat , it is capable of fine precision cutting, such as removing the skin from a fish.
For such a price and the level of quality it can’t even have any cons, only pick holes.

Why did this cleaver win the first place?

The product is very strong. Its material is stable and doesn’t crack. I also liked the delivery service that was fast and quick to react. It was delivered on the third day. I really enjoy the design. It is compact, comfortable and reliable. And it looks amazing! I am very happy with the purchase. It is definitely worth its money. The product is top-notch!
















№2 – ZELITE INFINITY Cleaver Knife >> Comfort-Pro Series >> High Carbon Stainless Steel Knives X50 Cr MoV 15 – 7″


Why did this cleaver come in second place?

This is a pretty decent product that perfectly fitted the interior of our office. The material is pretty strong and easy to wash if needed. I recommend you to consider buying this model, it definitely worth its money. Managers explained me all the details about the product range, price, and delivery.
















№3 – 7 Inch Stainless Steel Chopper – Cleaver – Butcher Knife – Multipurpose Use for Home Kitchen or Restaurant by Utopia Kitchen

7 Inch Stainless Steel Chopper - Cleaver - Butcher Knife - Multipurpose Use for Home Kitchen or Restaurant by Utopia Kitchen

Heavy duty cleaver is made from 100% stainless steel
7 Inch cleaver knife cuts easily through large pieces of food and is perfect for bone cutting, chopping and cleaving
ABS+430 handle allows for easy grip and hassle-free maneuvering and the superior quality stainless steel blade holds an ultra-sharp edge providing lasting and superior cutting performance
Rather expensive.
Quality control seems to be an issue.

Why did this cleaver take third place?

It doesn’t squeaks nor bents. Looks great in my apartment. This price is appropriate since the product is very well built. We are very pleased with the purchase — the product is great! It is inconvenient to use due to the size. I am going to get something different next time.
















cleaver Buyer’s Guide

If you keep the before points in mind, you can easily go out to the market and buy cleaver, right? No!

Stamped Blade

A flat steel sheet is cut to a desired knife blade shape by a hydraulic press. The blade blanks are then sharpened by undergoing multiple grinding steps and honing process. Stamped meat cleavers are thinner and lighter than forged cleavers.

They don’t have a bolster between the handle and the heel, and does not provide the same balance as the forged blades. Stamped blades are less expensive than forged ones.

A meat cleaver’s blade is usually 1centimeters (6”) long and is either made of high-carbon steel or stainless steel. You’ll find some cleavers with the blade and handle constructed as one piece, and some with separate attached wood or plastic handle.

Meat cleavers are the husky boys of the knife world. They’re the kitchen’s machete. The squared-off design offers toughness and weight to your every chop. Why would you need a meat cleaver to be heavy? Well, if you’re looking to cut through bones, sinew, cartilage, and animals’ thick meat, you would need a heavy blade that can do the job with just one swing, right? Here’s a rule of thumb when shopping for a meat cleaver: The heavier, the better.

The Winner

Considering price, construction, functionality, reputation, and design, the Dexter-Russell S528came out as the winner in our books. The hefty blade is the highlight, with its high-carbon steel material and a full tang that’s fastened securely to the cleaver’s wood handle. The handle is triple riveted! What does that mean to you? Rivets give you the heft and the strength you need for effective hacking.


When it comes to finding the perfect multi-functional kitchen cutting tool, nothing beats the benefits of using a Chinese cleaver. Not only does this utensil chop some of the toughest meats, it also can be used for delicate slicing, dicing, and chopping. Want to know what’s the best one for your needs? Check out the best Chinese cleaver reviews and see which one matches your kitchen arsenal perfectly.


What the heck is a vegetable cleaver? Rectangular vegetable cleavers, which are traditional in Asia, have a straighter edge that, unlike curving Western-style knives, stays in contact with food as you cut and chop, ostensibly streamlining vegetable prep. Unlike meat cleavers, which have thick, heavy blades and a blunter edge for hacking through bone, vegetable cleavers have thin blades that taper gently to a honed edge, for cleanly slicing vegetables and other, more delicate boneless foods.

None of the cleavers were completely square; all had a bit of a curve toward the tip of the knife, some more than others. Our least favorite Chinese-style cleaver had almost no curve, and its tip dug into the cutting board when mincing parsley, leaving splinters in our food and gashes in the board. Blades with too much curve needed a lot of rocking to cut fully through potatoes. Our favorites had moderate curves. We also found little difference between the double-edged nakiri and the single-edged usuba until we tried cutting butternut squash, when the single-edged blade pulled to one side, making it difficult to control. In fact, nakiri cleavers are preferable for cutting straight slices, while usubas are more specialized, intended for extremely thin vegetable slices and requiring some skill to use correctly.

Blade width turned out to be the most important factor. Slimmer blades glided effortlessly through food; thicker blades with a more pronounced, V-shaped taper from spine to cutting edge worked like a wedge, tearing instead of slicing. At the spine, our blades ranged from less than millimeters thick to more than millimeters thick. Those with the thickest spine turned out to be the worst performers.

Our favorite, weighing less than ounces, with a 1.9-millimeter spine, was light, sharp, and nimble, making vegetable work a breeze. Does the vegetable cleaver replace your all-purpose Western chef’s knife? Not necessarily, but it’s a pleasure if you chop a lot of vegetables.

Design Trifecta 360 Knife Block

Admittedly expensive, this handsome block certainly seemed to live up to its billing as “the last knife block you ever have to buy.” The heaviest model in our testing, this block was ultrastable, and its durable bamboo exterior was a breeze to clean. Well-placed medium-strength magnets made it easy to attach all our knives, and a rotating base gave us quick access to them. One tiny quibble: The blade of our 12-inch slicing knife stuck out a little.

Schmidt Brothers Downtown Block

This roomy block completely sheathed our entire winning knife set using just one of its two sides—and quite securely, thanks to long, medium-strength magnet bars. Heavy, with a grippy base, this block was very stable. An acrylic guard made this model extra-safe but also made it a little trickier to insert knives and to clean; the wood block itself showed some minor cosmetic scratching during use.

Schmidt Brothers Midtown Block

This smaller version of the Downtown Block secured all our knives nicely, though the blade of the slicing knife stuck out a bit. With a base lined with grippy material, this block was very stable. An acrylic guard afforded extra protection against contact with blades but made it a little harder to insert knives and to clean; the wood itself got a little scratched during use.

Differences in Blade Design

Blade design was also critical. For starters, we preferred blades that were between 6.7and 7.2inches long. Shorter blades felt stumpy and toy-like, incapable of bisecting wide butternut squash bulbs with a single cut; longer blades did a good job of handling squash but felt ungainly with smaller chicken parts. Blades that were at least inches tall helped guide the knife straight down through bigger items such as the butternut squash and duck and provided larger surface areas for scooping up chopped food. And we had a small preference for slightly curved blades rather than straight-edged ones; the curved blades allow users to rock back and forth to finish cuts that haven’t been delivered with enough force to get through the food.

Most important, however, were the thickness and edge angle of the blades. No two factors did more to explain each cleaver’s durability and perceived sharpness. In general, we disliked more traditional cleaver blades that were thick from spine to edge and were sharpened to an angle of more than 20 degrees on each side. These characteristics were designed to give the blades extra power and longevity; the more metal behind the edge, the stronger and less vulnerable to dulling or chipping it will be. Indeed, these knives seemed impervious to damage, surviving testing with no obvious dents or dings. Unfortunately, the characteristics that made the blades strong also made them less enjoyable to use; while a quick touch made it clear that the edges were plenty sharp, they rarely felt that way in action. Those thick, wedge-shaped blades effectively muscled their way through food, cracking and tearing butternut squash instead of slicing through it in a controlled, even manner.

On the other end of the spectrum were the Chinese-style cleavers. Their blades were very thin and were sharpened to more acute angles of 1to 1degrees. As a result of their thinness and smaller edge angles, these blades felt keen, agile, and precise in our hands. But they were also less durable, their edges collecting tiny but visible chips during testing. While this might be a deal breaker in a chef’s knife, we didn’t mind a few minor dings in our cleavers—they’re practically inevitable when you’re chopping through hard bone.

Still, we’d prefer a blade that could take a reasonable amount of abuse. The cleavers we liked best struck a happy medium between the power and durability of the thick Western models and the precision and agility of the thinner Chinese-style models. Our top models had fairly thick spines that gave the knives enough heft and downward force to chop easily through skin and bone but still felt sharp and highly nimble, thanks to blades that were otherwise moderately thin and ground to acute 15- to 17-degree angles.


Performance: We rated each cleaver on how easily and neatly it chopped through raw chicken wings and leg quarters, a whole roast duck, and a butternut squash.

Ease of Use: We rated each cleaver on how easy it was to maneuver—how heavy it was and how well balanced.

Blade: We rated each cleaver on the design of its blade, characterized by its height, curvature, angle, and thickness at spine and edge.

Handle: We rated each cleaver on the design of its handle, as determined by its length, width, affordance, and grippiness.

A good knife block keeps your knives organized without taking up too much space. Of all the knife blocks you can buy, the Kuhn Rikon Vision Clear Slotted Easy-to-Clean Knife Stand is our top pick because it’s easy to use, keeps your knives safe, and looks cool on your countertop.

In our younger foolish days, we may have scoffed at knife blocks as completely unnecessary. “Why would I put my knives in a wood block when I can just toss them in a drawer with the other silverware?” The wise person may get cut once reaching for a spoon before realizing a knife holder may not be such a bad idea after all. If you’re slow like me, it takes quite a few scars before this realization hits.

Protecting your digits is not the only reason to invest in a separate home for your cutting tools. Quality blocks will also protect your knife from becoming dull or scratched. Newer models are also bacteria resistant. If you take pride in your cutlery, there are a variety of units that will put your best pieces on display in an elegant manner.

When you think of a knife block, you may envision the traditional, slanted wood block that sits on your counter. There are many excellent blocks in this style, but none of them made our list. The main problems we have with the classic block is that it is difficult to clean and you can’t readily view the type of knife you are grabbing for. There are plenty of modern styles that sufficiently address these issues.

We spent hours looking closely at the many different styles and researching the customer and expert reviews and ratings of the models that were best in their class. For this buying guide, we chose the knife blocks that did the best job of capturing the positive characteristics of their particular style. The blocks in the following slides were included because they are durable, have a history of quality performance, and keep your knives easy to access and sanitary.

Read on in the slides below to learn why the Kuhn Rikon Vision Clear Slotted Easy-to-Clean Knife Stand is our top pick and why you might prefer the In-Drawer Bamboo Knife Block by Shenzhen Knives, the Böker Wood Magnetic Knife Block, the Premio Universal Knife Holder, or the Wüsthof Under-Cabinet-Swinger Knife Block.

Kuhn Rikon

Why you’ll love it: If you are looking for a knife block that is a piece of cake to wash and makes locating the knife you need effortless, look no further than the Kuhn Rikon Vision Clear Slotted Easy-to-Clean Knife Stand.

The Kuhn Rikon Vision Clear Knife Stand holds knives in place using a series of flexible sleeves that widen as needed for larger blades. Up to 1knives can be safely stored in this block, and the longest blade it will accommodate is eight inches. It’s big enough for most types of knives, excluding the occasional bread knife or cleaver.

The dimensions of the block are by by inches, and it weighs about one pound. We didn’t find any reports of the block falling over. Unlike traditional wooden knife blocks, this Kuhn Rikon block is not tilted. You remove the knife by pulling straight up. This might make accessing your cutting tools annoying if you store your block under a cabinet with low clearance. However, this type of holder is more sanitary and keeps your knives sharper since they do not rest in wood slots.

Rantings of an Amateur Chef tested the Kuhn Rikon Knife Stand and loved that the clear block made it easy to identify the knife you are looking for. The reviewer was also impressed with how many knives the flexible sleeves could hold in place.

Kitchen Byte  approves of this block because it is simple to clean, well-balanced, has a slim fit, and is see-through. The writer does mention that smaller knives may not stay in the slots.  who reviewed the Kuhn Rikon Vision Clear Knife Stand gave it four- or five-star ratings. Buyers are impressed with how many knives it can hold, and some say it can store as many as 1knives. There are reports that smaller, unbalanced knives do not stay in too well, though, so be sure to consider which knives you have in your collection before you buy this one.

On the plus side, the block does not take up much counter space and cleaning the plastic tray is effortless compared to traditional knife blocks that have several hard-to-reach slots.

Shenzhen Knives

Why you’ll love it: The In-Drawer Bamboo Knife Block by Shenzhen Knives is an excellent option when you have limited counter space.

Tange Champion tubing is used throughout the line

For 2018, Charge has moved back to steel, with the new Plug built around a gorgeous looking, super-skinny Tange Champion tubeset.

Charge moved to aluminium after pressure to try to bring its bikes to a more global market, but this didn’t go exactly to plan, so the brand has instead decided to focus its efforts on its longstanding key markets in Japan and Britain, both of which still have a ferocious appetite for steel bikes.

In line with market trends, the bike features a bolt through front and rear with clearance for 700x40c or 650x4tyres, though Charge was keen to stress that these are pretty conservative numbers and you’ll likely be able to squeeze something more portly in there.

The bike also features a threaded BB shell, flat mount brakes and rack and guard bosses. We’re particularly fond of the low-slung guard mount on the custom spec’ carbon fork, which should hopefully mean bending stays can be avoided.

The brand decided to build the bike using a tapered headtube with external cups, feeling that the aesthetics of this setup were more in keeping with the skinny frame over anything more integrated.

Spec wise, the firm expects to offer three or four price points, with the top-end builds likely to be built around a 1x SRAM hydro groupset, so quite similar to what you’re seeing here.

One thing that’s unlikely to change is the funky suspension seatpost featured on the orange bike. This prototype post from ProMax is said to bob far less than posts of old, with initial testing really impressing Charge.

The price of the new Plug is going to rise slightly, but that reflects the brand’s focus on the higher end market.

In keeping with the heritage of the Plug name, a more budget-oriented single speed version is also in the works that will use an eccentric bottom bracket for tensioning the chain.

A titanium version is also being developed, with a sample frameset rumoured to be kicking about the Grinduro event village, so we’ll be sure to get a photo of this if we spot it.

The Cooker moves to 29er wheels for 2018

The new Cooker represents a change of direction for Charge, with the brand dropping 27.wheels — which it so readily embraced a few years back —  in favour of 29” wheels for the new Cooker.

The frame uses Tange Champion tubing

Just like the new Plug, the frames are built around a super skinny Tange tubeset — Champion in this case.

That said, the bike is built around a Boost front and rear, so is also still compatible with 27.5+ wheels. Extra small and small bikes will also be specced 27.wheels.

The new bike is designed to be an all-round trail hardtail, built around a 120mm fork with a 67.degree head angle, a 640mm top tube (in a size large) and 435mm chainstays. The frameset is also specced with a 30.9mm, stealth-routed dropper friendly seat tube, a BSA threaded bottom bracket and the same simple cable guides that we liked so much on the Plug.

Such cushiness!

The custom steel bars are the real highlight of the build, with the production bars due to come in at a mammoth, rowdiness-ready 800mm width.

The production bike won’t differ too much from this example, but will feature a USA-Mid BB shell with a matching one piece crank and retro-tastic, round beartrap pedals.

As one of the very first production fixies, the Plug was something of an oddity and a foray into a totally new category when first released, with many expecting the bike to be a flop at the time.

The essentials

Chef’s knife This is an all-purpose knife, sometimes called a cook’s knife. It has a deep, triangular blade, around 20cm to 30cm long, and can be used for most chopping and slicing tasks. A Santoku knife is the Japanese equivalent, and features a less-pointed end.

Paring knife A small knife for more delicate tasks including peeling, slicing and trimming, the average blade length of a paring knife ranges from 9cm to 12cm.

Bread knife If you’ve ever crushed a crusty loaf with a blunt knife, you’ll appreciate the long, serrated blade of a bread knife, designed to cut the perfect slices.

The extras

Utility knife Sized between a chef’s knife and a paring knife, with a blade length of around 15cm to 25cm, the utility knife is another handy all-purpose tool.

Tomato knife A smaller serrated knife, this one is perfect for slicing tomatoes and other smooth-skinned fruit and vegetables.

Carving knife Choose this long, narrow knife for slicing cooked meat – it’s often available as a set with a carving fork.

Cleaver Heavyweight cleavers are able to slice through bone, so they’re ideal for the more serious cook who’s not averse to a little butchering. Lighter versions of cleavers are often used in Asian cooking as a general-purpose chopping knife.

What to look for

What kind of steel is the knife made from? Each manufacturer has its own mix of metals, with each trying to find the perfect balance of strength and durability. Carbon steel is strong and hard, which means it keeps a sharp edge, but it can be brittle and it’s prone to rust and staining so care is important. Stainless steel is resistant to rust and staining, but won’t hold an edge as well as carbon and is harder to sharpen. Some knives combine a carbon steel core with a layer of stainless steel for the best of both worlds. At the price-pointy end, Damascus steel knives are forged using multiple layers of different steels, which creates a beautiful pattern on the blade.

Care and storage

Storage-wise, it’s a choice between having your knives within easy reach of your prep space – in a knife block or on a magnetic strip holder – or storing them in a drawer. If you’re hiding them away, make sure each knife has a cover, or you can use a special in-drawer holder or knife pouch to wrap all your knives together. Having your knives jangling around in a drawer with other metals will lead to dull blades, and is also a safety hazard.

Traditional Butcher knife

The Traditional butcher knife is perfect for any types of cutting such as trimming, skinning of large animals and slicing. It usually designed having a wide blade and curved tip. The most important tools for all home butchers are 7-inches sized butcher knife, it is also a great tool for fishing, hunting, camping, or any outdoor activities that require food preparation.

Skinning Knife

As the name implies, this type of knives is basically for skinning. It is commonly used for beef and cheek meat skinning, with its inches long and curved blades, it is perfect for cutting in a full cut motion. The curved blades also used for skinning small animals and cutting the mid-section of the animal to remove its internal organs.

Cimeter Knife

Compared to the breaking knife, this type of butcher knife is usually very weighty and wide. It is used for trimming fats, slicing, or breaking down large cuts of meats into smaller ones while keeping the cut portions compact during the process to achieve a perfect and uniformed slice.

Steak Knife

Steak knives come with different types such as serrated, hollow, and straight. These types may vary from different cutting jobs and often comes with a sharp serrated edge in a wooden or plastic handle. It is the most common type of butcher knives found in every household.


It is important to remember that not all types of steel are the same, so working with a steel butcher knife might probably give you a hard time. It is advisable to choose VG-Steel for a high-quality standard that features excellent edge retention. The VG-Steel is commonly preferred by professional chefs around the world and for its convenient capabilities such as durability, sharpness, as well as stain-proof.

Additionally, High-carbon types such as 440 and 420HC steels are also known to have stain-proof and rust-proof properties which contribute to the knife’s overall durability and long-lasting sharpness. High-carbon type steel is also known as one of the components used for the production of German Steel. But I prefer 440C than 420HC, mainly because it is sturdier.


As mentioned earlier, there are many types of knife handles, like woods, plastic, and stainless steel. Wood handled butcher knives are pretty but they may not be sturdy like the other types of knife handles, in fact, health inspectors do not recommend a wood handled butcher knives because it can trap bacteria that may exploit the food you’re preparing.

On the other hand, Stainless steel doesn’t offer a strong grip and when wet, the handle may slip in your hands, but the good thing is, Stainless steel handled butcher knives are easier to clean and keeps a better balance as well.

I recommend choosing a butcher knife with Plastic handles, it is the most preferred material by many, they provide lightweight material for comfortableness and easy clean, however, during extreme temperatures, the plastic handle may be prone to cracking. It is important to remember that the handle and the blade should be balanced so that it would be easier to control the knife during cutting operations. Additionally, make sure that the tang (as mentioned earlier) runs all the way to the handle from the bottom to top.

There are many types of knife edges such as serrated edges are great for cutting on any combinations of both soft and crunchy textures, straight Edges which is (obviously) no curves and razor sharp, and Granton edges for easier slicing meats, it contains hollowed out sections along the blades. As mentioned earlier, a good butcher knife must have a high-carbon steel blade to retain high edge retention and sharpness for a long-time-use.

Of course, in every product we purchase, the price is the number one thing to consider. It is a good idea to choose butcher knives you truly get what you paid for. Buying knives in sets in the most affordable price might not a wise way to go, if you opt for high-quality butcher knives, the chances of spending money for replacements and maintenance of rusty or broken blades is low.

Comfort. Best butcher knives must offer a comfortable grip for balanced and easier control. The handle and the blade should be balanced in order for you to exert too much force on the handle while chopping.

Versatility. A convenient Butcher knives must be versatile and offer slight flexibility. This will prevent any blade damage or chip that may cause injuries. The best choice for you hard blades that can a large chunk of meats as well as fruits and vegetables.

Keep them out of reach of children.

It is advisable to keep the tip of your knife on the cutting board when mincing and quickly pump the handle down.

Lesley Stockton

After putting in 120 hours of research, talking with experts and chefs, and chopping more than 70 pounds of produce with 2chef’s knives, we think the Mac MTH-80 is the best for most people. For the fourth year running, the Mac has proven that it can stay sharp through regular use. It’s universally comfortable, and it’s our favorite knife to use in our test kitchen.

For our 201update, we brought in seven previously untested chef’s knives, plus several past contenders, to test against our picks. After slicing, dicing, and mincing a mountain of produce, and sending the top knives to a New York City restaurant kitchen for a week, we’ve decided that our picks remain the same.

Cheap and impressively sharp

If you’re simply looking for something cheap, durable, and crazy sharp, we like the 8-inch Wüsthof Pro 4862-7/20. In precision, sharpness, and price, it’s the best-performing budget knife we tested. Just like our top pick and runner-up, the Pro 4862-7/20 has a stamped blade, but the slicing action isn’t as smooth. Its cushy handle is comfortable for both larger and smaller hands, but its bulkiness and position make getting a proper pinch grip on the blade difficult. Even so, we think this affordable chef’s knife is your best bet if you’re on a budget.

An Edge in the Kitchen

We also gathered a testing panel of seasoned cooking pros and curious home cooks in our test kitchen to chop, slice, dice, julienne, chiffonade, and mince with the 1knives we collected for the 201update. Our testing panel included staff members as well as Sam Sifton, food editor at The New York Times (parent company of Wirecutter).

To get the opinions of some professional chefs, we sent the top-performing chef’s knives from our in-house test to the kitchen at Le Coucou (recipient of the James Beard Foundation’s 201award for Best New Restaurant) in New York City. The chefs and line cooks there used the knives during prep and service for a week.

Who should get this

Whether you cook seven nights a week or hardly at all, every kitchen should have a chef’s knife. Of all the pieces in a cutlery set, the chef’s knife is the most versatile and gets the most use.

Most people already have knives in their kitchen. But if you have an old knife set or a hodge-podge of hand-me-downs that aren’t cutting it anymore, it’s probably time for an upgrade. Likewise, if your once-nice knife has been used and abused and never sharpened, or sharpened improperly, it’s time for a new one. Dull kitchen knives aren’t only a bummer to use, they’re also more dangerous than a razor-sharp edge. A sharp knife is more precise, and you run less of a chance of the blade slipping off your food and into your finger.

Pull Quote

Of all the pieces in a cutlery set, the chef’s knife is the most versatile and gets the most use.

Maybe you’re on a budget and outfitting your first kitchen. Since an 8-inch chef’s knife can tackle 90 percent of cutting jobs, you can sidestep the sticker shock of an entire knife set by getting one good chef’s knife to use until you generate more funds to build out your cutlery collection.

If you’ve only ever used a German-style stainless steel knife, you may want a model—like our main and runner-up picks—made in Japan from high-carbon steel that will stay sharp longer.

Most chef’s knives you’ll find come in two styles: German and Western-style, double-edged Japanese (also called gyuto). What works for you comes down to a combination of personal preference, cutting style, and comfort.

How we picked

In our four years of covering chef’s knives, we’ve racked up 120 hours researching and comparing 90 knives. For this update we looked at new releases since 2014, more knives from the producers of our top pick and runner-up pick, and the 8-inch chef’s knife from one of our knife set recommendations.


A brand-new knife comes with what’s called a “factory edge,” which is usually very sharp. The edge should be keen enough to slice through paper straight out of the box. Your knife should remain sharp through moderate use for six to 1months as long as you hone it regularly, wash and dry it by hand after each use, and store it so the edge doesn’t get dinged up. (For more on knife care, see our care and maintenance discussion.) You don’t have as much control with a dull edge, which increases both your prep time and your chances of cutting yourself.

Forged or stamped blade

Blades are either forged or stamped, and both methods can produce high- or low-quality knives.

Most mass-produced Western-forged knives are drop-forged, meaning the manufacturer heats a blank of steel to an extremely high temperature and then pounds it into the shape of a blade with a high-pressure hammer. Stamped blades, as the name suggests, are punched out of sheet metal before further refinement and sharpening. The quality of stamped blades varies widely, from the flimsy knives found at grocery stores to our top pick and runner-up. Knife makers like Mac and Tojiro heat-treat their blades to make them just as strong as forged steel.


The best knives have handles that fit comfortably in the hand. The feel depends on the size and shape of your hand and the way you grip the knife. Try to get your hands on as many knives as possible to find a good fit. If you can, cut some vegetables to look for knuckle clearance—nothing is quite as annoying as banging your knuckles on the board while chopping. Just like balance, comfort is a personal thing.

Flaws but not dealbreakers

We understand that the price of the Mac MTH-80 may be offputting for some people. But because it’s made of quality materials, we think it could last a lifetime with proper maintenance. Check out the section on how to keep your knife like a pro for tips on extending the life of the most important tool in your kitchen.

How to examine a knife

When buying a knife, it’s good to spot-check the spine and edge for defects. Hold the handle with the edge facing downward and look along the spine to make sure the blade is perfectly straight.

Next, turn the knife over and examine the edge. If you see any light reflecting back at you, that indicates a roll spot in the factory edge. You can grind it out with sharpening, but you shouldn’t have to sharpen a brand-new knife. Don’t be shy about asking for many versions of the same knife to decide on the particular one you want to take home. At Korin, a knife store in New York City, the staff usually brings out two or three of the same knife so you can examine them and choose the one you like.

How to use a chef’s knife

A pinch grip is the most secure way to hold your chef’s knife. We strongly urge you to train yourself to use the pinch grip. You’ll have more control over your knife and as a result cut yourself less. You’ll also develop faster knife skills, and that’s awesome.

Basic care

It’s easy to care for a knife—it just takes attention and two extra minutes. Simply hand wash and dry it thoroughly after each use. Never put any sharp blade in the dishwasher, as it’s not good for the edge to bump up against other things, such as glassware and ceramic—materials that are harder than the steel. Don’t use anything abrasive on the blade, such as a Brillo pad or a scouring sponge, which can make little scratches in the metal.

Never throw unprotected knives into a drawer, where they will dull quickly. Wall-mounted magnetic strips, such as the Benchcrafted Mag-Blok we recommend in our guide to small-apartment gear, are better and safer. If you don’t want a magnetic strip mounted to your wall, buy a blade guard. That way you can store your knife in a drawer and keep the edge protected.

Honing and sharpening

Keep a sharp cutting edge longer with a honing rod. Using this tool doesn’t actually sharpen the blade—its sole purpose is to realign the microscopic teeth on the edge that bend and get knocked out of alignment during the course of use. Although steel is a classic choice for honing rods, sometimes the material is softer than your knife, rendering it useless. A ceramic rod is better because it’s harder than the hardest steel but has a smooth grit so it won’t chew up the edge of your knife while it realigns the edge. Hone your knife before each use, and you’ll be golden.

As you watch a chef whipping a knife down the rod toward their hand at lightning speed, it’s easy to see yourself taking a thumb off. But the task is not as difficult as it looks. You have two ways to effectively hone a knife.

The competition

We gave the Global G-gyuto an honorable dismissal. It would’ve been one of our top picks, but our testers were split down the middle: People either loved the Global for its light weight and razor-sharp edge, or hated it because of its dimpled steel handle, which could get slippery in wet hands. If you find the Global G-intriguing, we suggest checking it out in person to see if it’s right for you. The G-also comes highly rated by Cooking For Engineers.

Even though the Mac MBK-8is an objectively good knife, our testers were pretty lukewarm about it. The edge was sharp and the knife itself was comfortable to hold, but the 8½-inch blade length was a little too much for home cooks. This model was one of the knives we gave to pro chefs to try, and no one mentioned it in any of our interviews as a favorite.

Like the Mac MBK-85, the Mac HB-8garnered lukewarm reviews from our testing panel. The HB-8offers a good price-to-quality ratio, but our testing panel overwhelmingly chose the Tojiro DP F-80as the better chef’s knife for the price.

The Tojiro DP Damascus F-65gyuto is a higher-end version of the Tojiro DP F-80Most testers agreed that this model was a little too heavy for their liking.

At first glance, the 8-inch Misen Chef’s Knife checked all the boxes—a half bolster, a pointed tip, a sharp factory edge, an affordable price—but in our tests it fell flat in performance. The slicing action was rough and the edge felt a little toothy. The Misen couldn’t make a straight cut down the middle of a butternut squash, and it split carrots instead of cleanly slicing through to the board.

Wüsthof designed its newest offering, the Classic Uber line, to be a bolsterless version of the traditional Wüsthof Classic chef’s knife. But we saw one big problem with the 8-inch Classic Uber 4583-7/20: Its belly curve was much more articulated than those of other Wüsthof chef’s knives. Much as we did with the Zwilling J.A. Henckels Zwilling Pro, we found the Wüsthof Classic Uber awkward to use because of the extremely curved belly.

The Mercer MXM161gyuto performed about as well as our runner-up from Tojiro, but it was considerably more expensive at the time of our tests.

In an attempt to find another budget knife to test for the 201update to this guide, we gave the Mercer Genesis M2107chef’s knife a try. Although the Genesis was sharper out of the box than the Victorinox, it didn’t perform as well as the Tojiro.

The Togiharu Molybdenum Gyuto is a classic lightweight gyuto. Another honorable dismissal, this knife is sharp and precise. Like the Tojiro DP F-808, it lacks knuckle clearance for large hands, but the Tojiro is a better value. This Togiharu model’s blade is thin, so we think it’ll be too delicate for hard vegetables. Chad Ward praises this knife in An Edge in the Kitchen.

Messermeister’s Meridian Elité came recommended in Chad Ward’s An Edge in the Kitchen. In our tests, the drop-forged blade of the Meridian Elité E/3686-was sharp enough but not as smooth as that of the Mac MTH-80 or the Wüsthof Classic Ikon. It was heavier than the Classic Ikon, too, and our testers thought it was awkward to hold.

Another stamped budget choice, the Messermeister Four Seasons 5025-was pretty much on a par with the Wüsthof Pro, but was almost twice the price at the time of our testing. We found the handle uncomfortable due to the sharp edges on the spine, which kept digging into our forefingers.

The Zwilling J.A. Henckels Zwilling Pro 38401-20drop-forged knife was just awkward. The curve of the blade was too severe and made chopping difficult. We had difficulty maintaining control of this knife in our tests.


Manufacturers now offer cleavers with fiber scrap catchers that automatically collect fiber scraps. These cleavers not only collect the fiber scraps, but also store the scraps in internal trash bins, ultimately saving cleaning and safe disposal time for the technician. As a standard safety practice, fiber shards should always be collected and disposed of properly, since fiber can easily embed into the skin.

Automated Scoring Mechanisms

Due to automated scoring mechanisms, cleavers can now complete a cleave and reset themselves for the next cleave in one or two steps, streamlining the cleaving process while perfecting the quality and reliability of the cleave. Manufacturers now offer handheld clamshell-designed cleavers that complete the cleave with a quick and easy press-and-release motion.

Knife Tang

A tang or shank is the back part of the blade component of a tool where it extends into stock material or connects to a handle – as on a knife, sword, spear, arrowhead, chisel, file, coulter, pike, scythe, screwdriver, etc. One can classify various tang designs by their appearance, by the way they attach to a handle, and by their length in relation to the handle.

WHETSTONE—for sharpening the blade.

When a knife edge becomes dull because it has not been regularly honed or has been used on hard surfaces, a blade can become dull. At this point a honing steel will not sharpen the edge. Here you need the Whetstone to grind off metal to get back the sharp edge.

Chop, slice, and dice on wooden cutting boards. Glass, stone, or similar hard surfaces will speed up the wearing and dulling process significantly.

Chef’s Knife

This knife is the best place to spend your money, as this knife will likely be receiving the most use. A well-made chef’s knife can last you a lifetime if you take care of it properly. Make sure to buy a knife with a sturdy grip, so it is as safe as possible.

Bread Knife

A classic example of a serrated knife. This knife is best known for slicing up—bread, of course. However, the bread cutter isn’t limited to only one job; it’s also great with those trickier veggies with tough skins.

Meat Cleaver  With its big, square blade, everyone knows what this knife looks like. Obviously, that huge blade is there for a reason, and that reason is to obliterate bones when preparing meat.

Carving Knife

This knife slices through cooked meat like butter. When you are looking for a knife to cut that pot roast or rotisserie chicken—here’s your go-to.

Slicing Knife  Another knife that can be used for carving, except the Slicing Knife’s sharp edges are designed to prevent precious juices from escaping. It also will give you a more precise cut.

Butcher Knife  It’s not as common to have around the kitchen, but still useful. The Butcher Knife is a pretty high-impact knife, so make sure that if you plan on investing in one of these, you plan on being safe and knowing the cuts of meat you are dealing with. Otherwise, visit your friendly neighborhood butcher—no shame there.

Fillet Knife

The Fillet Knife is similar to a Boning Knife, except it is used for fish. It’s definitely a useful tool if you tend to eat a fair amount of food from different walks of life (literally).

Steak Knife  This knife will typically be included in a set of six when buying a knife set. This small, serrated knife helps when you are cutting that tender, single-serve portion of filet.

Deba Knife





How to save up to 86%? Here is little trick.

You must visit the page of sales. Here is the link. If you don’t care about which brand is better, then you can choose the cleaver by the price and buy from the one who will offer the greatest discount.



Final Word

First of all thanks for reading my article to the end! I hope you find my reviews listed here useful and that it allows you to make a proper comparison of what is best to fit your needs and budget. Don’t be afraid to try more than one product if your first pick doesn’t do the trick.

Most important, have fun and choose your cleaver wisely! Good luck!

So, TOP3 of cleaver



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