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Top 10 Best Santoku Knives
- MOSFiATA 7-Inch Professional (Editor’s Choice)
- DALSTRONG Gladiator Series 18cm (Luxury Choice)
- Bravedge 7-Inch Double Bevel (Best Value)
- Taylors Eye Witness 13cm (Best Set)
- TUO Black Hawk S Series 7-Inch (Best Full Tang Handle)
- KOI Artisan 7-Inch (Best Carbon Stainless Steel)
- Zelite Infinity Comfort Pro 18cm (Best Comfortable)
- Zelite Infinity Alpha Royal 7-Inch (Best Damascus Steel)
- Mercer Culinary M22707 (Best 7-Inch)
- MasterClass 12cm (Best with Knife Sharpener)
Santoku knives are Japanese knives with a specific shape featuring a sheep’s foot blade. They are versatile knives that are ideal for dicing, slicing, and mincing. Considering how frequent these cooking activities are done in most kitchens, many chefs feel that a 7-inch Santoku knife is an essential part of any collection of culinary tools.
If you don’t already own one or are in need of an upgrade, we strongly recommend adding a high-quality Santoku knife to your collection of kitchen knives. But where do you begin your search? Right here, of course.
This article lists our top 10 favourite Santoku knives. It explores how we chose the products over those average Santoku knives you often see in stores. You will also find the answers to some common questions pertaining to Santoku knives to help you make the best decision possible.
We will also compare Santoku knives to chef’s knives so you know exactly how they are different. Keep reading to find the best Santoku knife for your needs.
How We Compared Santoku Knives
To find the right Santoku knives, we considered multiple factors, including:
- Blade length
- Tang design
- Special features and accessories
Our editorial team carefully researched and selected products that would suit a wide range of needs to take your kitchen experience to the next level. We set out this list after assessing customer reviews and evaluating pros and cons in line with the above comparison points.
Find more about our behind-the-scenes process here.
Santoku Knife Reviews
With the MOSFiATA 7-inch Professional Santoku knife, you get quality and top-level performance. You also get a couple of bonus accessories with this knife, so it’s inarguably the best Santoku knife on this list.
The MOSFiATA 7-inch Santoku knife features a full tang design giving it excellent balance and weight with what we think is the ideal length for chopping vegetables and meats. The German high carbon stainless steel blade promises to increase rigidity and strength, making it easy to use and durable.
An ergonomically designed solid Micarta handle also makes this knife comfortable to hold. It has three reinforced rivets to complement the full tang design and textured finger points to establish a better grip that is slip-resistant. It also has a stainless steel finger guard, just in case. A knife sharpener and a gift box also come included with your purchase.
Regretfully, this Santoku knife may not arrive as sharp as one would expect. But fortunately, it comes with a sharpener, so you can easily remedy this issue with a bit of time. You should also know that the laser-engraved pattern may be different from those of knives made from authentic Damascus steel.
- Knife sharpener included
- Comfortable grip Micarta handle
- Top-quality performance and durability
- Well-balanced full tang design
- German high carbon stainless steel blade
- Laser-engraved pattern may be different from the Damascus pattern
- May not arrive sharpened
DALSTRONG Gladiator Series 18cm is our top recommendation. Thanks to its expertly weighted design and comfortable grip, it has all the advanced traits and features you could want and is ideal for chopping large portions of meat and vegetables.
High carbon German steel and a full tang design give this Santoku knife added strength and long-lasting durability, so you won’t have to even think about replacing it for many years to come. It features a tall blade height that helps keep your knuckles elevated, which can be highly beneficial if you have larger hands. The blade also has advanced edge retention and a 56+ Rockwell Hardness.
The handle on this knife has an ergonomic shape and is made with G10 Garolite. It also has a triple-riveted design that is customarily found in full tang knives. The DALSTRONG Gladiator Series 18cm Santoku knife comes with a protective sheath for safe storage in a drawer.
You may need to sharpen the blade on this knife upon arrival as it may not be razor-sharp as you will want. The blade could also be too tall for some people’s preference, but it makes a good Santoku knife choice if you are looking for luxury quality.
- Tall high carbon German steel blade
- Full tang design
- Reinforced G10 Garolite handle
- Luxury quality suitable for professional chefs
- Advanced edge retention
- The blade could be too tall for some people’s preference
- It may arrive somewhat dull
The Bravedge 7-Inch Double Bevel Santoku knife is an affordable knife that doesn’t sacrifice quality for a lower price tag; that’s why we chose it for our top value pick. We also love its stylish and sleek design that is sure to complement any kitchen.
This Santoku knife is constructed with a black stainless steel blade that is both strong and expertly fitted for all your slicing needs in the kitchen. The thin blade is also well-balanced, rust-resistant, and corrosion-resistant. It is also dishwasher safe and, therefore, very easy to clean.
This quality knife also features a soft ergonomic handle with a black and grey wood grain effect that matches the black blade. It also has a built-in finger guard and a sheath included for your safety. Overall, this quality knife is lightweight and easy to hold.
Unfortunately, the Bravedge 7-Inch Double Bevel Santoku knife is just nearly full tang by design, not full tang. The black metallic paint could also start to wear off over time. Additionally, its soft handle may start to show some wear and tear quicker than expected, but considering the overall value it provides, we don’t think you will mind.
- Black stainless steel blade
- Excellent value option
- Built-in finger guard
- Dishwasher safe
- Lightweight and easy to hold
- The soft handle could wear over time
- The black blade coating may flake with extended use
- Not entirely full tang
Santoku knives are great for all kinds of cutting tasks, but that doesn’t mean they don’t need any other knives, so we made sure to include a great set on our best Santoku knife list as well. Thats’ where the Taylors Eye Witness 13cm Santoku knife set comes into play.
The Taylors Eye Witness 13cm Santoku knife also comes with a 13cm all-purpose knife or paring knife to help round out your collection of kitchen knives. Both knives feature stainless steel blades and a firm non-slip grip that is also ergonomically designed to be comfortable to hold.
The soft rubberish grip on these knives is available in 10 different colour options, so you can easily match it to your home decor or just pick your favourite colour, whichever you prefer. They are also backed by the Taylors Eye Witness 25-year guarantee.
Be aware that these knives do not feature a full tang design, and they could prove to be less durable as there are reports indicating the handle could detach from the blade with extended use. Lastly, these knives may need to be sharpened more frequently than most knives, but we think it’s worth the extra effort in the long run.
- Soft rubber-like grip
- Ergonomic design
- Santoku knife and all-purpose knife set
- Stainless steel blades
- Ten different colour options
- It may require frequent sharpening
- Durability could be improved
- Partial tang design
The best Santoku knife with a full tang handle design on our list is the TUO Black Hawk S Series 7-inch. You’ll love its top-quality construction and well-balanced weight that elevates your level of comfort while you use it to chop, slice, mince, and dice through just about anything you want.
The TUO Black Hawk S Series 7-inch features a German high carbon stainless steel Santoku blade with 8-12 degrees precision on each side. This signals improved durability and flexibility and also helps to prevent food from sticking while you work. In addition, the blade’s eye-catching 3D ripple pattern and highly reflective finish emphasize the knife’s timeless elegance.
The Santoku blade was created using vacuum heat treatment to achieve the desired hardness and sharpness. The full tang black military-grade G10 handle on this forged Santoku knife contains three rivet reinforcements for stability. It also has an ergonomic shape that helps to make it comfortable to hold for longer periods.
Potential cons for this steel Santoku knife include the handle feeling a bit unbalanced and the blade not arriving fully sharpened. However, when compared to other Santoku knives, there are still plenty of reasons to love this one.
- German high carbon stainless steel blade
- Full tang G10 handle
- 3D ripple pattern with a highly reflective finish
- Minimalistic design
- Ergonomic and comfortable to hold
- Could be more durable
- May not be as well-balanced as expected
- Knife may not arrive fully sharpened
A top quality carbon stainless steel blade is often all you truly need in a Santoku knife, and we think the KOI Artisan knife stands out in this field. This 7-inch Santoku knife also has a traditional blade length and a stylish appearance to help it perform well and look good while doing it.
One of the best parts about this Santoku knife is its razor-sharp edge that cuts through meats and vegetables with minimal resistance. The Japanese high carbon steel blade gives the knife upgraded strength, stain resistance, and corrosion resistance.
The blade has also been Laser-etched with a beautiful Damascus pattern and features a Pakkawood handle for added style. This Santoku knife is also ergonomically designed to be well balanced and lightweight. It also comes with a gift box.
Be aware that, although the KOI Artisan Santoku knife has a Damascus pattern, it is not made out of authentic Damascus steel. It may also need to be sharpened somewhat frequently when compared to other knives, but we still think it makes a solid choice.
- Razor-sharp edge
- Japanese high carbon steel blade
- Laser-etched Damascus pattern
- Well-balanced and lightweight
- It may need to be sharpened somewhat frequently
- The blade not be made from Damascus steel
We think it is important to choose a knife that will be comfortable to use, even when cutting larger sized portions of foods. With this in mind, the Zelite Infinity Comfort Pro 18cm Santoku knife has earned a spot on our top 10 list with flying colours.
The Zelite Infinity Comfort Pro 18cm Santoku knife features a ThyssenKrupp German stainless steel blade that is sure to perform in the kitchen. It has a 56+ Rockwell Hardness and a tapered bolster, making it easy to clean and safe to use. The blade is non-stick as well as rust, stain, and corrosion resistant too.
A full tang design and a black coloured ABS handle help to balance out the weight of the knife without sacrificing function. Paired with its razor-sharp edge and overall ergonomic design, how could you go wrong with this knife? In case you still aren’t sure, it comes with a 15-year warranty to boot.
Even with all of its accolades, this Santoku chef’s knife may be relatively less durable when compared to other top options on our list. It doesn’t come with a protective sleeve either, but there is a good chance this won’t make much of a difference for most people.
- ThyssenKrupp German stainless steel blade
- Full tang design with a tapered bolster
- 56+ Rockwell Hardness
- Razor-sharp edge
- Comfortable, easy-to-grip handle
- It might not come with a protective sheath
- It could be relatively less durable than expected
Damascus steel is known for its layered strength and superior hardness; therefore, it makes a great material for knives. The Zelite Infinity Alpha Royal 7-inch is our favourite Damascus Santoku knife, and you can count on its durability and superior hardness.
With its extremely sharp blade edge, we think you are sure to love this knife’s Japanese AUS10 67-layer Damascus steel blade. This Santoku knife makes light work of slicing, mincing, and dicing so you can maximise efficiency while you prep your ingredients. It also was constructed utilising liquid nitrogen tempering to ensure long-lasting performance and durability.
The Zelite Infinity Alpha Royal 7-inch has a full tang design with a tapered bolster for safety and ease of use. Three metal rivets are used to secure the rounded G10 handle, a coveted trait by many. It also comes with a gift box to complete the package.
So you know, this Santoku knife may need to be sharpened upon arrival to achieve the sharpest taper-ground edge possible. It is also somewhat heavier in weight by design, but some chefs prefer this, so it depends on preference as to whether you view this as a pro or a con.
- Japanese AUS10 67-layer Damascus steel blade
- Reinforced G10 handle
- Full tang design with a tapered bolster
- Long-lasting performance and durability
- Super sharp blade edge
- It may need sharpening upon arrival
- Can have a somewhat heavier weight
Many Santoku knives come with an 18cm or 7-inch blade length because many chefs find them to be the most useful and versatile in the kitchen. For this reason, the Mercer Culinary M22707 earned a spot on this best Santoku knife list. It is also comfortable to use and has a solid design.
Mercer Culinary Santoku knives are made with stain-free Japanese high carbon steel blades. The blades are great for chopping and are lightweight and easy to clean as well. The base of the blade features a protective finger guard where it meets the handle to help prevent accidents.
You get 11 different coloured handle options with this 7-inch Santoku knife. Aside from the colour, the handles also have a contoured ergonomic design with textured indents for your fingers. They are made out of polypropylene and Santoprene for enhanced comfort and durability all at the same time.
Compared to other Santoku knives, the Mercer Culinary M22707 may have a less durable blade. The hollow edge has only been ground into one side, which could lead to a slightly angled cut. In addition, this is not a full tang Santoku chef’s knife, only a partial tang.
- High carbon steel blade
- 11 different coloured handle options
- Durable and comfortable ergonomic handle
- Textured indents for your fingers
- Lightweight by design
- It may have a single-sided hollow edge
- Blade’s durability may need improvement
- The product may only feature a partial tang design
Unavoidably, any kind of chef’s knife will dull with use. That’s why it is important to have a knife sharpener to use along with your Santoku knife. If you don’t already have a sharpener, the MasterClass 12cm may be the right Santoku knife for you.
MasterClass 12cm Santoku chef’s knives are made with the high carbon stainless steel blade many chefs prefer. They also have a full tang design with the traditional triple-rivet handle reinforcements to ensure quality and durability.
These Santoku knives come with an Edgekeeper knife sharpener sheath included for maintenance purposes. This highly convenient design style allows it to perform self-sharpening naturally as it is inserted and extracted into the sheath. Master Class also made their knives dishwasher safe and chose to back them with a 25-year guarantee so you can be confident in your purchase and its potential longevity.
Even though this Santoku chef’s knife comes with a sharpener included, you may still want to use a whetstone occasionally to keep the blade at its absolute sharpest. It could also be too small for some people’s preference, but it is great for travel, unlike larger Santoku knives.
- Convenient Edgekeeper knife sharpener sheath
- High carbon stainless steel blade
- Dishwasher safe for an easy clean
- Well-balanced full tang design
- 25-year manufacturer’s guarantee
- It could be too small for some people’s preference
- You may still want to use a whetstone sharpener occasionally
Santoku Knives Explained: A Buyer’s Guide
Now that you know our recommendations for the best santoku knife let’s explore some common questions relating to this general-purpose knife. This way, you can get a comprehensive understanding of what they are, their uses, and what to look for when buying a Santoku knife for your kitchen.
What Is a Santoku Knife?
A Santoku knife is a Japanese-style knife that has become quite common worldwide. In Japan, the word Santoku means “three uses” or “three virtues” and refers to the knife’s ability to cut fish, meat, and vegetables with precision.
In other words, a Santoku knife is excellent for various chopping, slicing, dicing, and mincing tasks, making it an excellent choice for a general-purpose knife.
Santoku vs Chef’s Knife: Key Differences
While these Japanese knives may look similar to western knives like chef’s knives, they actually have a few key differences.
A standard Western chef’s knife is often longer than a Santoku knife. Averaging about 8 to 10 inches or 20 to 26cm in length, the blade on a chef’s knife ends with a spear tip and has a fine edge. The blade of a standard chef’s knife also features a double taper, and it typically has a thinner blade when compared to most Santoku knives.
Conversely, the average Santoku knife features a sheep’s foot tip. It is also generally shorter in length. In addition, it is typical for Santoku knives to have wider blade edges. These edges are designed to facilitate a super clean cut. Even so, Santoku knives still tend to be more lightweight than a traditional vegetable cleaver or Western chef’s knives, making them more comfortable to use for longer periods.
In addition, a Santoku knife has a single taper on the blade, which helps to facilitate a sharper angle on your cuts and prevents food from sticking.
How to Choose the Best Santoku Knife
At first glance, many of the best Santoku knives may seem a bit similar side by side. That’s why we recommend paying attention to the following traits when choosing the best Santoku knife for your specific kitchen needs.
The first thing to consider when in the market for a premium quality Santoku knife is the blade material. The best Santoku knife for budding home cooks will have a hard and durable blade with a sharp edge for ease of cutting.
Santoku knives are made with steel blades, typically stainless steel, but they often vary in the level of carbon content they possess. A blade material with a higher carbon content will often be harder and more durable. The right blade will even help prevent food from sticking while you use your knife to chop ingredients. Therefore, make sure you’re getting a Santoku knife that features a high carbon stainless steel blade.
You should also consider where the steel was sourced, and the number of folds or layers forged when the stainless steel blade was manufactured. German and Japanese Damascus steel are some of the most common sources of top-quality steel used in knives. Both utilise an intricate manufacturing process to produce an extremely durable finished product that can withstand the test of time. It is best to look into German and Japanese steel blades to determine which type suits your preferences.
Typically, Santoku knives have slightly longer blades compared to a Western chef’s knife. The most common blade length is between 5 and 7 inches or 13 to 18cm. While 18cm Santoku knives are the most common, you may prefer a smaller blade for compact storage or for bringing with you on your camping trips. So before making your choice, it is important to ask yourself, “what size blade do I want my Santoku knife to have”?
In addition to the blade length and material, you will also want to consider the handle material when looking for the best Japanese Santoku knife in the UK.
The most important thing to remember here is that you want the handle to be comfortable to grip, even when using the knife to chop large quantities of food for longer periods.
Many Santoku knives feature an ergonomic shape to achieve a comfortable grip. Handles can be made from just about anything, including wood, ABS plastic, or silicone. Which material do you think will suit your preferences best?
The reinforcement design of the handle to the tang may also indicate quality and durability. A handle with triple reinforced rivets is often thought to be the most durable and secure option in this field. However, this only occurs in a full tang knife.
The shank (or tang) on a knife is the part of metal that extends from the blade into the handle.
A full tang Santoku knife has one long piece of metal with a handle wrapped around one end. This simply means the metal extends all the way from one tip to the other. The metal will only extend into the handle partway with a half or semi tang knife.
While a full tang design in a knife often leads to better balance, handling, and durability, they are also more expensive as a result. However, we think full tang Santoku knives are certainly worth the investment. Is a full tang design something you want to prioritise?
Special Features and Accessories
Lastly, you may want to look for a Santoku knife that has special features or comes with bonus accessories. Many Santoku knives come with a sheath for added protection during transport or storage. This specific accessory can come in handy if you don’t already own a knife block or magnetic strip to keep your knives contained in a safe manner.
A knife sharpener is also a useful and convenient tool that can be included with a new knife purchase. Some knives arrive not fully sharpened or may need to be sharpened frequently. Again, if you don’t already own a sharpener, you may want to consider purchasing a knife that comes with one included to make things more convenient.
The Best Santoku Knife for You
Our top pick for the best Santoku knife is the MOSFiATA 7-Inch Professional, our Editor’s Choice. We think you’ll love it just as much as we do as it boasts top-quality performance and durability, thanks to its German high carbon stainless steel blade.
Additionally, it features a well-balanced full tang design complemented by reinforced rivets. This quality Santoku knife also has a comfortable Micarta handle with textured finger points and a protective finger guard that allow for a better grip, slip resistance, and safety. Each MOSFiATA Santoku knife also comes with a gift box and a knife sharpener for added convenience.