What Japanese Knives Do You Need?

By Gias

Japanese knives are made with harder steel which keeps them sharper for longer. They also often have a thinner blade which makes them easier to control. The most common Japanese knives are the Santoku, Gyuto, and Nakiri.

The Santoku is an all-purpose knife that can be used for slicing, dicing, and mincing. The Gyuto is a chef’s knife that is great for slicing meat and vegetables. The Nakiri is a vegetable knife that has a straight edge making it easy to chop vegetables evenly.

As a sushi chef, I get asked a lot about the different types of Japanese knives and which ones people need for their kitchens. While there are many different types of Japanese knives, here are the three that I think are essential for any kitchen: The first is the yanagiba, or sushi knife.

This long, thin blade is specially designed for slicing fish and other seafood. It has a sharp point that makes it easy to pierce fish skin, and its long length lets you make long, clean cuts. The second knife is the deba.

This heavy duty knife is perfect for chopping vegetables or boning fish. Its thick blade can handle tough tasks without breaking or chipping. Finally, the usuba is a vegetable knife with a thin, rectangular blade.

It’s great for slicing vegetables thinly and evenly – perfect for making beautiful veggie dishes. So those are the three essential Japanese knives for your kitchen! Do you have any of these in your collection?

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Which Japanese Knife to Buy First?

When it comes to Japanese knives, there are a lot of options out there. It can be tough to decide which one to buy first. Here are a few things to consider that may help you make your decision:

  1.  What material do you want your knife to be made from? Japanese knives can be made from carbon steel, stainless steel or a variety of other materials. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages, so think about what would work best for you
  2. How much money are you willing to spend? Japanese knives can range in price from relatively affordable to quite expensive. It all depends on the quality of the materials and the craftsmanship involved.
  3. What kind of cutting tasks will you use the knife for? Some Japanese knives are better suited for certain tasks than others. For example, sushi chefs often prefer lighter and thinner blades while cooks who do a lot of chopping might prefer something heavier-duty.
  4. Do you want a traditional or modern-style knife? This is mostly a matter of personal preference, but it’s worth considering since it could affect how comfortable you are using the knife.

Where will you store the knife? If you don’t have proper storage for a Japanese knife (e.g., a wooden block), then it’s likely not worth investing in one since they need to be kept dry and protected from damage. Hopefully, these considerations will help narrow down your choices and make it easier for you to pick out the perfect Japanese knife for your needs!

Which Japanese Knives Do Chefs Use?

There are a few different types of Japanese knives that chefs typically use. These include the Santoku knife, the Nakiri knife, and the Gyuto knife. The Santoku knife is an all-purpose kitchen knife that is great for slicing, dicing, and mincing.

It has a relatively straight edge and a slightly curved spine. The Nakiri knife is similar to the Santoku but it has a square blade that is great for chopping vegetables. The Gyuto knife is a chefs knife that is used for slicing meat and fish.

It has a long, thin blade with a slight curve.

What Should You Not Cut With a Japanese Knife?

If you’re a fan of Japanese knives, then you know that they’re some of the sharpest and most durable knives on the market. But what should you not cut with a Japanese knife? Here are four things to avoid:

  • Hard Bones Japanese knives are designed for slicing, not chopping. That means they can handle softer bones, like chicken or fish, but harder bones will damage the blade. So if you’re planning on cutting up a steak or roast, reach for a different knife 
  • Frozen Foods Again, because of their sharpness and durability, Japanese knives can handle fresh food with ease. But frozen foods are another story altogether. The extreme cold can make the blade brittle and more likely to break or chip. So when it comes to frozen foods, it’s best to use a different type of knife.
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What is the Difference between a Gyuto And Santoku?

There are a few key differences between gyuto and santoku knives. For one, gyuto knives tend to be longer than santoku knives. Gyuto knives also have a curved blade, while santoku knives have a straighter blade.

Additionally, gyuto knives are typically used for slicing and chopping meat, while santoku knives are better suited for vegetables. Finally, gyuto knives often cost more than santoku knives.

Nakiri Knife

A Nakiri knife is a traditional Japanese vegetable knife. It is characterized by its rectangular blade, which is ideal for slicing vegetables. The blade is also slightly thinner than that of a Western chef’s knife, making it easier to create thin slices.

Nakiri knives are typically used for cutting vegetables, but can also be used for other tasks such as mincing and chopping. Some Nakiri knives also have a serrated edge, which can be useful for cutting through tough skinned vegetables like squash and eggplant. If you’re in the market for a new vegetable knife, or just want to try something different, a Nakiri knife is definitely worth considering!

Gyuto Knife

Gyuto Knife A gyuto knife is a Japanese chef’s knife that is used for slicing, dicing, and chopping vegetables. It can also be used for meat and fish, but it is not as common because the blade is thinner than a Western-style chef’s knife.

The gyuto knife is similar to a French chef’s knife, but it has a straighter edge and a pointier tip. The blade is usually between 16 and 21 centimeters (6-8 inches) long. The most important part of any kitchen knife is the steel.

The type of steel will determine how sharp the knife can get, how easy it is to sharpen, and how long the edge will last before it needs to be sharpened again. Gyuto knives are usually made from carbon steel or stainless steel. Carbon steel knives are easier to sharpen but they require more maintenance because they can rust if they are not dried properly after each use.

Stainless steel knives do not rust as easily but they are more difficult to sharpen. When choosing a gyuto knife, it is important to find one that fits your hand comfortably. The handle should be made from a material that does not slip when wet and it should be securely attached to the blade so that it does not come loose with extended use.

Many gyuto knives have wooden handles, but plastic or composite materials are also common.

Santoku Knife

A Santoku knife is a Japanese-style all-purpose kitchen knife. It is similar to a Western chef’s knife in shape and function, but typically has a thinner blade and a straighter edge. The word “santoku” means “three virtues” or “three uses”, referring to the three cutting tasks that this knife is designed for: slicing, dicing, and mincing.

Santokus are usually between five and seven inches long, making them shorter than chef’s knives, which are typically eight inches or longer. This makes them more maneuverable and easier to control for small tasks like mincing garlic or slicing herbs. Santoku knives have become increasingly popular in recent years as more people have become interested in cooking with fresh, seasonal ingredients.

They are also a popular choice for those who want a smaller kitchen knife that is easy to handle. If you’re considering adding a Santoku knife to your kitchen arsenal, here are some things to keep in mind. When choosing a Santoku knife, it’s important to find one that fits your hand comfortably.

The grip should be secure but not too tight, and the blade should be the right size for your hand. You’ll also want to consider the weight of the knife – some people prefer a lighter knife while others prefer one that has a bit more heft behind it. Ultimately, it’s important to find a Santoku knife that feels good in your hand and suits your cutting style.

The blades on Santoku knives are usually made from carbon steel, stainless steel, or ceramic. Carbon steel blades are known for their sharpness but can require more maintenance than other types of blades since they can rust if not properly cared for (stainless steel is less likely to rust). Ceramic blades hold their edge well but can be brittle so it’s important not break them by accident (something that’s easily done with harder foods like carrots).

Ultimately, the best blade material for you will depend on your personal preferences and how you plan on using your Santoku knife.

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Are Japanese Knives the Best?

Japanese knives are some of the best in the world. They’re made with high-quality steel and they can hold an edge really well. Japanese knives also have a really sharp point, which makes them great for precision cutting.

If you’re looking for a good Japanese knife, you should definitely check out brands like Shun and Global. These brands make really great knives that will last you a long time.

Japanese Knife Set

A Japanese knife set is a great addition to any kitchen. They are known for their sharpness and durability. With proper care, they will last a lifetime.

There are many different types of Japanese knives available on the market today. The most popular ones include the Gyuto, Santoku, Nakiri, and Petty knives. Each type of knife has a specific purpose.

Gyuto: The Gyuto is a versatile all-purpose knife that can be used for slicing, chopping, and mincing meats and vegetables. Santoku: The Santoku is a general-purpose knife that excels at slicing, dicing, and mincing vegetables. It can also be used for light meat-cutting tasks.

Nakiri: The Nakiri is designed specifically for vegetable chopping and slicing. It has a thin blade that makes it easy to create even cuts without crushing delicate ingredients like tomatoes or herbs. Petty: The Petty knife is a smaller version of the Gyuto knife.

It’s perfect for precision tasks like peeling fruits and vegetables or trimming meat off bones.

How to Use a Japanese Knife

When it comes to Japanese knives, there are a few things you need to know in order to use them correctly. For starters, Japanese knives are much sharper than your average Western knife. This means that you need to be extra careful when using them and always cut away from yourself.

Additionally, Japanese knives are typically made of softer steel which can make them more difficult to sharpen. However, this also means that they’re less likely to chip or break if used properly. Now that you know the basics, let’s get into how to actually use a Japanese knife.

When cutting with a Japanese knife, you want to use a slicing motion rather than a chopping one. This will help prevent the blade from chipping and keep your cuts nice and clean. Additionally, it’s important to grip the handle correctly – place your index finger on top of the blade near the bolster (the part where the blade meets the handle).

This will give you more control over your cuts and help you avoid accidents. With these tips in mind, go forth and master your Japanese knife skills!

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Where to Buy Japanese Knives

There are a few things to consider when purchasing a Japanese knife. The first is the type of steel used in the blade. The most common types are stainless steel, carbon steel, and high-carbon steel.

Stainless steel is the most durable and easy to care for, but it doesn’t hold an edge as well as carbon or high-carbon steel. Carbon steel is less durable than stainless steel but holds an edge better. High-carbon steel is the best of both worlds – it’s durable and holds an edge well – but it’s also more difficult to care for than stainless steel.

The second thing to consider is the type of handle you want. The most common types are wooden handles and plastic handles. Wooden handles are more traditional and tend to be more comfortable in the hand, but they require more maintenance than plastic handles.

Plastic handles are easier to care for and often have a more ergonomic design, but they can feel slippery in the hand when wet. The third thing to consider is the size of the knife. Japanese knives come in a range of sizes, from small paring knives to large chef’s knives.

It’s important to choose a size that will be comfortable for you to use – too big and it will be unwieldy, too small and it won’t be able to handle tougher tasks like chopping vegetables or carving meat. Now that you know what to look for, where can you buy Japanese knives? There are a few options:

  1. Department stores: Many department stores carry Japanese knives, though they may not have a very wide selection. This could be a good option if you know what kind of knife you want and just need to find somewhere that stocks it.
  2. Online retailers: There are many online retailers that sell Japanese knives, such as Amazon or eBay. This could be a good option if you want access to a wider range of knives or if you want to take advantage of discounts or free shipping offers. However, make sure you do your research before buying from an online retailer, as there have been cases of counterfeit products being sold.
  3. Knife shops: If there‘s a specialty knife shop in your area, this would be worth checking out. They should have knowledgeable staff who can help you choose the right knife for your needs, and they‘ll likely have a wider selection than either department stores or online retailers.

Japanese Vegetable Knife

A Japanese vegetable knife is a special type of knife that is designed specifically for cutting vegetables. It has a thin, sharp blade that is ideal for slicing and dicing vegetables quickly and easily. The handle of a Japanese vegetable knife is usually shorter than that of a traditional chef’s knife, which makes it more maneuverable and easier to control when cutting veggies.

If you’re looking for a good all-purpose knife to add to your kitchen arsenal, a Japanese vegetable knife is a great option. It can be used for everything from chopping onions and carrots to slicing tomatoes and cucumbers. And because the blade is so thin, it’s also great for precision tasks like julienning vegetables or creating fancy garnishes.

So whether you’re a veggie lover or just want a versatile and easy-to-use knife, consider investing in a Japanese vegetable knife!


The author of the blog post discusses the different types of Japanese knives and their uses. The author recommends that if you are only going to purchase one Japanese knife, then a chef’s knife is the best option. The author also discusses the differences between Western knives and Japanese knives.


About the author

Introducing Gias, an Engineer and Kitchen Knife connoisseur with a specialization in Japanese Knives. With over five years of dedicated testing, reviewing, and research experience, Gias brings a wealth of knowledge to the world of kitchen knives. Passionate and deeply committed, Gias has created this site as personal documentation of their unwavering love for kitchen knives.