When it comes to perfecting your culinary skills, a good knife set is crucial, even for the most casual of home chefs: Having the right tools on hand can instantly step up your meal preparation game. Knife sets aren't exactly one size fits all, however, since we all have different needs in the kitchen. While some of us will require versatile cutlery for whipping up multi-course meals on the regular, others may simply need a solid collection of steak knives for the occasional holiday feast. Read on to find out how to choose the best knife set for your specific necessities.
What are the best kitchen knife sets?
There's no shortage of amazing cutlery sets to be uncovered, but finding the right one for your specific desires can be more challenging than you might think.
For starters, before buying a new knife set, you'll need to think about exactly what you’ll be using them for. Will you be filleting fish often? Do you have a house full of steak lovers? How often will you use — and consequently, dull — your knives?
You'll also need to take stock of what's included in each of these essential kitchen sets. While most at-home chefs can get by with a handful of knives, there are a few key utensils you’ll definitely want to look for in your new set, including a paring knife for peeling, trimming, and cutting small food items, a chef’s knife (or a multi-purpose knife) for general cutting, including chopping, dicing, mincing, and slicing, and a serrated knife, which is vital for slicing bread, tomatoes, and more delicate foods, such as fruit and baked goods.
Additional wants may include a meat cleaver (used for cutting up larger meats like chicken and ribs), a vegetable cleaver (for finely chopping and dicing herbs and veggies), a utility knife, (this often serves as an additional chef’s knife), a fillet knife (for filleting fish), a boning knife (to remove meat from chicken or roasts), a carving blade (to slice up your holiday ham, turkey, and roasts), or a bread knife (made specifically for cutting baked goods and fruit).
Some sets may include a honing steel for keeping blades sharp, or kitchen shears, which are useful for tasks such as cutting herbs or opening food packaging.
Your knife set preference may also vary based on physical preferences. Do you prefer a lightweight version that you can easily wield, or something with a little more heft? Will these knives feel good in your hand and comfortable to use?
We've scoured the web for the best of the best for of the above specifications and more, so whether you’ve got professional-level cooking skills or are a beginner chef, you're sure to find your dream knife set. From a deluxe Wüsthof 7-piece set to a solid stainless steel version that costs less than your average takeout order, there are a slew of great options out there just waiting to be discovered. Keep scrolling to shop FIRST's picks for the best knife sets to suit all your meal prep needs!
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