10 Best Chef Knife under 100 in 2020 (Review & Buying Guides)

Fact Checked By Luna L. Rusk | Last Updated on October 24, 2020

If a professional chef is the heart of a kitchen, where does the chef’s heart lie?

The heart lies in the knife. Yes, the same goes for your kitchen too. It doesn’t matter what you are cooking, without the touch of a great knife, neither the aroma nor the taste will unveil.

A good chef knife is expensive. However, we have found a few best chef knife under 100 that will save you bucks but will make the food savory.

Each of the knives we have reviewed is excellent in made, material, performance, and aesthetic. If you feel a little perplexed to pick the right one, the in-depth buying guide has all the detail to make your job easy.

Let’s not wait any longer and get to know the knives.

Top-10 Chef Knife under 100

Top Picks

Best Seller
MAC TH-80 Hollow Edge 8″ Chef Knife

Mac Knife Series Hollow Edge Chef's Knife, 8-Inch, 8 Inch, Silver

Editor's Choice
Shun Sora 8″ Chef Knife

Shun Sora Chef's Knife, 8 Inch, Cutlery Handcrafted in Japan, VB0706, Black

Budget Picks
Imarku Pro Kitchen 8-inch Knife

imarku Chef Knife - Pro Kitchen Knife 8 Inch Chefs knife High Carbon German Stainless Steel Sharp paring knife with Ergonomic Handle

Top-10 Best Chef Knife under 100 Available in The Market:

Mac Knife Series Hollow Edge Chef's Knife, 8-Inch, 8 Inch, Silver

No matter how much you use, this Japanese carbon steel knife will pass through almost every food item. Nothing will stick to the 8-inches blade, and the sharpness will stay for an extended period.

This is an all-purpose knife in the kitchen. You can use it for any cutting, slicing, or chopping job. Carbon content in the stamped blade is not high, but rough to make it the best of the best in our review.

Molybdenum in the steel prevents any corrosion damage by citrus fruits and vegetables. The metal also keeps the shine sharpness intact for a longer time.

Triple-rivet pakkawood handle is ergonomically made for a better grip and maneuverability. Make sure you take extra care of the handle to prevent any mold growing. Half bolster bluff ensures the safety of your fingers in any situation.

Pros

Cons

Shun Sora Chef's Knife, 8 Inch, Cutlery Handcrafted in Japan, VB0706, Black

From the heart of Japanese cuisine culture to your kitchen – this authentic Japanese knife is the connection between the entire journey. Both appearance and performance make it one of the top choices in our list.

Every Shun knife is made in Seki city through 100 individual processes. This meticulous craftsmanship ensures premium quality for the knife. The first impression will be on the blade.

The metal is heat-treated to make the grains smaller. Smaller the grains more reliable the blade. Besides, the process also takes out the best properties of the metal.

You will find the 16-degree double-bevel on both sides of the composite blade edge. Such Blades have a San Mai core with stainless steel sides. It makes the knife stain and rust-resistant.

The plastic molded handle is made with textured PTE. It is almost impossible to slip the knife unless you have a wet hand. The handle also helps to hand-sharpen the knife with precision.

Pros

Cons

Mercer Culinary Genesis Forged Chef's Knife, 9 Inch

If you are looking for a highly durable composite metal knife, Mercer Culinary Genesis is the perfect choice for you. Both the length and made of the 9-inch knife is ideal for any kitchen work.

The blade is made with high Carbon where Chromium, Molybdenum, and Vanadium are used as additives. Additives enhanced the durability of the blade for better sharpness and tougher jobs. These additives also make the blade rust and stain-resistant.

You will feel the comfort and confidence while holding the Santoprene handle. Single rivet design with a full tang provides a comfortable grip and safety for your fingers through the full bolster.

The sharpness of the blade is preserved by the taper ground edge. Sharpening, cutting, and holding the knife is easier with this edge. This design retains the sharpness for a longer time with efficiency.

Pros

Cons

Miyabi Morimoto Edition Chef's Knife, 8-inch, Black w/Red Accent/Stainless Steel

Miyabi is an authentic Japanese knife made from forged blades. The full tang enhanced the handle with a triple-rivet system. A combination of Japanese made, and German steel makes it one of the most desired knives among the cooking enthusiasts.

The knife blade is made with specially formulated German steel. The steel contains high carbon. Forging of the steel, while making the blade, makes the metal more fine-grained for better durability.

Edges of the Blade are 9 to 12-degree beveled for a precise cut and better honing. Rounded spine blade is thin to ensure sharpness. However, the ultra-thin design compromises the toughness of the knife.

Miyabi knife is perfect for almost every kitchen job except boning. This blade shape makes it challenging to work on the bones.  

Pros

Cons

imarku Chef Knife - Pro Kitchen Knife 8 Inch Chefs knife High Carbon German Stainless Steel Sharp paring knife with Ergonomic Handle

Double-beveled high-carbon blade with extra sharpness is the most noteworthy feature of this German knife. Professional chefs and food enthusiasts love this 8-inches knife for outstanding outcomes.

The edges are 8 to 10-degree bevel for extra sharpness and smooth action. Additional carbon content makes the blade hard enough to even boning chicken and beef. Obviously, slicing, dicing, and chopping will be like a breeze with it.

You can feel the firm grip while grabbing the Pakkawood handle. The handle is ergonomically designed for safety and fatigue-free experience. Nitrogen cooled full tang maintains the balance with precision.

Sharpness remains for a long time in this super affordable knife. Nevertheless, we recommend honing using knife sharpeners after each use.

You will love the velvet-lined black packaging of the knife. It can be an excellent option for a gift to any of your food enthusiastic fried or daily members.

Pros

Cons

Zwilling J.A. Henckels ZWILLING Chef's Knife, 8 Inch, Black

Zwilling brought the international standard of cutlery engineering to your home. This German knife uses the expertise and technologies from almost every corner of Europe. As a genuinely multipurpose tool, the 8-inches Henckels knife can take care of every kitchen hacks.

Construction of the Blade represents a new era of forging technology. The Twin SIGMAFORGE process includes six steps to build the blade from a single strip of raw steel.

High Carbon German steel ensures longevity and sharpness. Laser-controlled edges stay sharp for a long time with a consistent blade angle.

Full rat tang runs across the Polypropylene handle. This comfortable handle is supported by a full bolster bluff for the safety of your fingers. Both the blade design and the bolster balance the moves during any cutting or slicing job.

A few users have found difficulties while cutting with the wavy blade. With a flat stroke, it may seem complicated but if you can rotate the blade along the edge, it will make things easier.

Pros

Cons

Victorinox 10 Inch Swiss Classic Chef's Knife with Granton Blade

One of the best budget knives in our review that is made from superior quality German steel. The tapered stainless-steel cuts through any common vegetables and fruits in your kitchen.

The stainless-steel blade is made from German steel through Swiss technology. You may find the outlook very modest, but the conical ground of the blade is there for ultimate precise cuts.

Grips are highly ergonomic. All the credits go to the slip-resistance Fibrox material. It offers a firm grip along with the shape of the handle. Cleaning the blade and handle is easy in either dishwasher or by hand. We recommend hand washing.

Lightweight Victorinox knives are perfect for medium-duty cutting, slicing, and chopping jobs. If you are looking for a heavy-duty knife, the longer version of the Victorinox will be an ideal choice.

Pros

Cons

DALSTRONG Chef Knife - Gladiator Series - Forged ThyssenKrupp High Carbon German Steel - Full Tang (6" Chef Knife, Black)

Dalstrong knives are famous for their durability and extreme sharpness. This 10-inches chef knife has a razor-sharp, hard blade that can cut almost any food item.

The forged blade is made with high-carbon German ThyssenKrupp steel. You don’t have to worry about rusting and stain. The sharpness of the blade is excellent for any job; however, sharpening after each use is recommended.

Pakkawood handle makes the knife aesthetically superior. The full tang of the blade is attached to the handle with a triple rivet. But the handle can slip if your hand is wet or oily. Cleaning after each use is also essential for a better grip and use.

Despite manufacturing in China, this affordable knife has all the great features of a European knife. The hard nature of the steel makes the blade brittle. Extra care and precaution are recommended when doing a hard cutting or slicing job.

Pros

Cons

Zelite Infinity Chef Knife 8 Inch, Damascus Japanese AUS-10 Super Stainless Steel Blade Lasts a Lifetime, Sharpest Professional Chefs Knife For Cooking, Gyuto Made for Home Cook or Restaurant Kitchen

Are you looking for the best Damascus chef knife under 100? Well, the wait is over. ZELITE Infinity is a Japanese knife with Damascus steel pattern. This knife may not be an original Damascus masterpiece but will give you a very close imitation of that.

The blade is made with high carbon stainless steel. It won’t get rust or stain that quickly; however, regular honing is highly recommended. Even a small spot can be dangerous for the sensitive blade.

Tapered bolster, full tang, and triple rivet make the handle one of the safest. The Pakkawood of the handle is highly durable and easy to wash.

Honing the blade with a 12 to 15-degree angle will give you the best outcome. The sheath covers and protects the blade from any physical damage.

Pros

Cons

Global G-4-7 inch, 18cm Oriental Chef's Knife

The first thing so attractive about this Japanese knife is the look. Its iconic shape with a textured handle makes it one of the best knives with aesthetics. High carbon steel with additives ensures prolonged sharpness with durability.

You won’t see any separate handle in this knife. Full rat tang is thickened and textured to make it the handle. Tapered bolster at the handle edge is for balancing the weight.

G-4 stainless steel is mixed with Chromium, Vanadium, and Molybdenum additives. This combination is responsible for the sharpness of the double-edge blades.

The straight edge of the blades makes it easier to hon. Besides, this design cuts through almost any food item. Global knives have a wide range of sizes that are appropriate for particular tasks.

You must have one of those famous knives in your utensil’s drawer.

Pros

Cons

Buying Guide for the Club Chef Knife Set under 100

You can feel confident about all the ten knives of the review. They have been picked because of their premium quality, performances, durability, and sharpness.

However, if you need more in-depth knowledge before picking the one from the ten, consider these factors. If you know them, selecting the best one for your kitchen will be as easy as counting 1,2,3.

Size

We all know the cliché tagline – size does matter. It fit perfectly no other place than the kitchen and especially in the case of chef knives under 100.

Blade length varies from 6 to 8-inches. You may find some of the reviews suggesting 6-inches knives as they are easy to use. However, we believe one size doesn’t work for all.

Your skill, experience, and hand size play a vital role in choosing the perfect knife size for you. If you are comfortable with longer blades, and have all the expertise in the world, buy an 8 or 9-inch knife.

If you prefer swift actions over the power and control, small length knives are an excellent choice for you.

Weight

Based on the metal and construction, the chef knife can be of diverse weights. High carbon, stamping knives are lightweight whereas the forged, stainless blades have a heavier weight.

Heavyweight knives are great to cut thicker and sturdier items. Contrarily, lightweight knives are perfect for thinner materials.

Lightweight knives are easy to use and maneuver through any food items. If you are stepping into the kitchen world for the first time, buy a thin knife to initiate your blade collection.

Pro-level kitchen enthusiasts can switch between the weights. So, when they need a tool for heavier jobs, it is better to buy a heavyweight knife.

Types

There is no shortage of knife types in the world. You will find different knives for a job. Each blade and handle have some unique features that make it perfect for that specific cutting or filleting job.

We have summed up all the knives in four major groups. You may find other smaller groups; however, these four covers the entire knife kingdom.

Chef Knife:

These are the aces of your cutlery set. Largest of all knives and can perform almost any kind of job, including slicing, mincing, chopping, and dicing.

Bread Knife:

Cut through the soft and fluffy texture of bread requires a serrated blade. Bread knives are specially serrated to cut the bread without ruining the shape and texture. They are typically 9 to 10-inches.

You can also use it as a slicing knife to slice soft vegetables and fruits, meats, and cakes with it.  

Paring Knife:

These are almost like any smaller fillet knife. You will find the blade length between 3 to 4-inches.  There is no serration on the blades like the bread knife.

You can use it for mincing, chopping, peeling, and filleting.

Utility Knife:

When the chef knife is too long, and the paring knife is too short, utility knives come as a savior. The length of the utility knife is typically 7-inches.

We recommend keeping a utility knife in your knife block set. This will make your set of knives complete and competent for almost any job.

Construction

How the blade was made had a significant impact on its quality and durability. There are two ways a chef knife blade can be made.

Forging:

This is the most elaborate process of making a knife from molten metal. The metal turns into a solid piece, and veteran blacksmith pounded the shape while keeping it under extreme heat.

The entire process is time-consuming and laborious. So, the forged knives are expensive and come with all the great features.

Forged knives are much heavier and thicker than the stamped knives. Professional chefs prefer forged knives for durability and sharp edges.

Stamping:

Unlike a forging, stamping punched out the blade with a machine from a solid metal sheet. This is a quick and easy process of making knives. So, stamped knives are more affordable than any forged chef knife.

Don’t think stamping makes the knife any inferior to its forged counterparts. If you need a knife for light-duty work, a stamped knife is an excellent option. Besides, it will also help you if budget is an issue. 

Metal

Chef knives are made with three types of steels. Each of them has its unique properties to make the knife excellent for cutting jobs.

High Carbon Stainless Steel:

They are also known as Japanese steel. High carbon additives in steel make it harder and more durable. The carbon content may vary from 5 to 15%.

Due to the carbon, the steel rarely gets the rusting and discoloration. The price range of these steel knives is a bit higher than the regular carbon steel.

We have found this steel is less robust and brittle for the extreme hardness. Chipping off metals from the blade may be an issue.

Carbon Steel:

Carbon steel is also known as German stainless steel. They are famous for this toughness. Despite being soft, these blades can endure a lot of hard work.

The Carbon content in this steel type ranges from 0.5 to 1.5%. Due to the softness, blades made with carbon steel are much thicker than any best Japanese knife.

Carbon steel blades have sharper eggs and are easy to sharpen. However, they may get discolored or rusted, if not appropriately maintained.

Stainless Steel:

It is the most common and affordable metal to make knives. Most of the regular chef knives are made with stainless steel.

You won’t find any rust on the blade. Moreover, they are comfortable to sharpen and extremely durable. Due to the softness, the blade can’t retain the sharpness for long.

Handle

The choice of the handle in the best chef knife set under 100 is versatile. You must pick among wood, plastic, and laminate when buying a chef or kitchen knives.

Wood:

Most of the classic kitchen knives come with wooden handles. It represents a blend of craftsmanship and aesthetics. High-end knife handles are made from the wooden blocks of Bocote, Ebony, Oak, or Cocobolo.

The main issue with the wooden handle is its durability and hygiene. Unlike plastic or lamination, wood is less durable. Moreover, it can grow bacteria if kept wet, and the handle sometimes smells like the meat or fish; it just sliced.

Plastic:

Some of the best knife blocks under 100 come with plastic handles. They are more durable than wood and easy to clean. If you are going to use the knife for any heavy cutting, we won’t recommend the plastic handle.

High heat is the worst enemy of any plastic handle. So, make sure you keep them away from fire or direct sunlight for a long time. If not textured, the plastic handle can get slippery in no time.

Laminate:

Laminate combines plastic and wood. Therefore, you will get the aesthetics of wood and the durability of plastics in the same handle. Most of the current models of handmade cooking knives come with a laminate handle.

The handle may look like wood but is much durable. Cleaning is easy, so hygiene will not be an issue. Unless you try to burn the knife, there will be no problem with high heat.

Tang

It is the part of the blade that extends within the handle. In any high-quality chef knife, you will see a strip of metal in the middle of the handle attached by metal rivets. This is the tang. 

Tang is the most essential part of the chef’s knives for smooth function. It holds the blade in place and makes the job easy. It comes in two ways.

Full Tang

This tang type runs inside the entire length of the handle. Typically, a full tang is attached with three metal pins or triple rivets. We recommend full tang for any chef knife.

It ensures better control than its partial counterpart- partial or stub tang.

Partial Tang

In some steak knives, you will see the metal is extended partially into the handle. This is the partial tang where the blade only runs partially into the handle.

If you want to use your knife for light cutting and chopping jobs, a partial tag can be an excellent option. Otherwise, we still recommend full tang.

Bolster Bluff

If you want to use your favorite kitchen knife safely and swiftly, check the bolster bluff. It is the thick part of the blade that works as a transition from handle to blade.

Firstly, it prevents your fingers from slipping towards the blade while cutting. And you know how important it is. Some knife comes with a half bolster that only secures the blade attached with the handle. Full one safeguards the entire width of the blade.

The second most important thing this bluff does is to maintain weight balance. Obviously, the blade and the handle will have different weights. This thick metal part works as a counterbalance during any use.

Now you can chop, cut, or even sharpen the blade with ease.

FAQ about the Best Chef Knife under 100

Numerous brands in the market make chef knives. Some of them may be alluring to make you buy instantly. Almost ‘like buy at first look.’

Hey, wait, don’t just buy it. Look at the list of the best knives we have reviewed for you. Brands like Mac, Shun, Dalstrong, Henckels, Global, and Miyabi are leading the market.

Chefs around the world rely on the quality and performance of these bands. You can also try these at an affordable cost.

Brands like Miyabi, Victorinox, and Global make some of the great budget-friendly chef knives. However, we have found some of the features do not go with the price.

We recommend the Zwilling J.A. Henckels 8-inches Chef Knife for the best bucks’ value. The price range is highly affordable; however, you will get all the features of any high-end chef blade. 

Any medium-sized knife will be an excellent choice for kitchen use. When we say medium, we mean 7-inches blade length.

This blade size is neither too big to control nor too short to deal with more hard foods. So, you can use it in almost any kind of preparation.

A complete knife set will be one of the best things to buy for your kitchen. Nevertheless, there is a catch. You will end up buying a bunch of knives that will never be used. Moreover, the knife set will require more storage space. 

On the contrary, you can buy individual knives based on your choice and needs. You may not have a big set, but you will have all you need. Let’s not forget about the price difference between a complete set and a set of a few knives.

Veteran chefs say one thing very clearly – great knives are not for dishwashers. So, let’s start storing and caring for the knife with the notion that knives need to be cleaned and dried by hand.

Don’t toss your best knife into a drawer with other utensils. It will ruin the edges and destroy the sharpness. Another way the edges and sharpness can be damaged is by keeping the knife blades down. So, keep the knives in a knife block.

You can keep the block in a utensil drawer now with a utensil holder. It will keep the knife separated from other utensils and keep them razor-sharp.

Professional chefs use their knife for a longer period. So, the blade is supposed to stay sharp for a longer period without sharpening. Steel blades are much suitable for this kind of heavy-duty job.

However, ceramic knives are a bit fragile piece of cutlery that is suitable for delicate works. These soft blades are great for preparing food at home. You will find it unreliable in the hand of a professional chef.

Bolster bluff ensures the safety of the user. This heavy metal transition between blade and tang safeguard the fingers from slipping. Moreover, it also balances the weight of the blade for a fast cutting and chopping job.

We recommend a full tang for a high-quality chef knife. This extended metal runs through the entire length of the handle and attached with rivets.

Clamped between the two blocks of handle materials, the full tang offers both balance and firm grip for the knife. They are crucial for any knife for superior performance and longevity.

Final Verdict

For any professional chef or a cooking enthusiast, a great knife is like a conductor’s baton. It is the tool with which he/she makes the orchestra sing. Imagine the cooking chore as an orchestra, and you will get the metaphor.

Having an orchestra baton, aka kitchen knife is both comfortable and affordable. Our review on the best chef knife under 100 will be your ultimate guide to pick the perfect one for you. The buying guide has all the in-depth information about any type of kitchen knife.

It’s up to you now. You will be the ultimate decision-maker to select which knife will show the magic in your hand. Consider your skill, interest, hand-size, and type of cooking you usually do for the final purchase.

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