Do You Really Need a Santoku Knife (Find out what knife to buy)

There was a time on this blog when I compared a santoku knife against a chef knife and tried to help you to decide on which one to buy, depending on your needs.

Thinking about that again, I decided to go deeper into the topic to see if you needed a santoku knife or not.

I’m sure that you must have thought about that too since you don’t want to make a poor buying decision – which is why you’re here today.

Together, we’ll go through the points that could sway your decision for the better.

Are santoku knives good quality?

The quality of the santoku knife is dependent on the manufacturer, their level of attention to detail, and quality control measures that they have put in place.

Like other kinds of kitchen knives, the santoku knife is a kind of knife and the name alone does not make it good or bad. Just as we have cheap chef knives that go dull after a few usages and don’t last long otherwise, so do we have poorly-made santoku knives.

If you want to enjoy your santoku knives, make sure to have gone with a reputable brand that knows what they are doing.

Should you buy a santoku or chef knife?

Japanese knives are making waves these days, and I love what they have done on the santoku knife.

At this point, much of the points that the chef knife has against the santoku is based on their long run in the market. The German chef knives are great and well made, but they are easily comparable to santoku knives these days.

If you would like a more objective look at this all, look at this guide to santokus and chef knives. In there, you have all the resources you need to determine which works best for you.

What foods are santoku knives best for?

The santoku knife can replace the chef knife, making it suitable for all kinds of food items that you would cut with the latter also.

Thus, a santoku knife is well designed to handle meat, cut vegetables, slice fruits and prepare a wide variety of meals neatly and smoothly.

Thanks to the wider blade on the santoku knife, they are also finely suited to scooping up cut food items neatly. That is something you would love to have when dealing with fragile/ tender food items that might break on handling – which is like the reason why you have an extra point on a tomato knife.

What is the best size of santoku knife to buy?

The 5.5-inch santoku knife is best for balance, compactness, and ease of use. The blade is well balanced against the handle, allowing for an ergonomic approach to slicing, mincing, and dicing which is what the knife is best suited for.

Some manufacturers make a longer blade on their santoku knives, but I prefer what the 5 – 7-inch blade does for me.

Which santoku knife should I buy?

Like I said earlier, there are good and poor santoku knives on the market.

Some long-standing manufacturers have stayed away from making these knives so that it doesn’t compete too much against their chef knife lines too. That makes your options even smaller if you were planning on buying from one of the big-name brands out there.

Fortunately, I found some nice santoku knives that fall in the right price bracket, come with an optimal size (well, for me anyway), and will stay sharp and functional for very long.

If you’re interested in them too, find them all on Amazon as mentioned below:

  • Wusthof 4182 5-inch Santoku Knife – right size, well-balanced and it comes from one of the most trusted German knifemakers in the game. You cannot go wrong with this guy. [Buy on Amazon]
  • Zwilling Pro 7 Inch Santoku Knife – ticks all the right boxes and even comes with dimples to prevent sticky foods from staining the knife. Preferred for those who want a larger santoku knife to handle heavier tasks. [Buy on Amazon]
  • Henckels Classic 7 Inch Hollow Edge Santoku – for a 7-inch knife, this one has a much longer handle to give the blade more balance. The wider blade is also finely suited to lifting food off the cutting board. Did I mention that Henckels is one of the best brands you can trust with your money also? [Buy on Amazon]

You won’t regret a good santoku knife

If you ever find someone who doesn’t like their santoku knife, it is either one of two reasons:

  • They are a diehard fan of traditional chef knives, and that is what they are used to; or
  • They bought poor santoku knives.

Otherwise, anyone would love what these kitchen knives can do for them.

Don’t go all out and buy santokus knives in all sizes, though. Analyze your needs and buy only one. If you already have a santoku, I don’t see why you will need to buy an additional chef knife too.

In case you want more than a santoku to handle more tasks in the kitchen, look at this guide to buying knife sets to save costs and get the best package every time. The good news is that santoku knives come with any self-respecting knife set, so it’s a win-win for you.

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