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Business Insider has affiliate partnerships, so we get a share of the revenue from your purchase. Ask any chef, and they will tell you that the key to preparing a first-class meal is having the right tools. This includes a full set of sharp knives. In fact, one of the first tasks a professional chef performs upon stepping into their kitchen is sharpening their knives. And, many chefs also hand wash their cutting implements at the end of the day.
Most knife sets feature a chef’s knife, a paring knife, a utility knife, and a serrated bread knife. And, you can commonly find sets with deboning knives, steak knives, slicers, Santoku knives, Kiritsuke prep knives, butcher knives, shears, and more. All of the sets we review are made of stainless steel, though ceramic knives are growing in popularity. We did not include any ceramic knives because they are more prone to chipping or breaking completely. Plus, they are harder to sharpen.
When shopping, be sure you know exactly what you are getting. For example, when you hear “X-piece knife set,” you might assume the X stands for the number of knives. However, it turns out this is just a clever marketing ploy. The other “pieces” you need to factor in are shears, the block, and even knife sheaths.