7 Best Japanese Chef Knives 2023

by Erika Shinomoto
top japanese chef knives

Looking for the best Japanese chef knives? Here’s a list of top recommended chef’s knives that you should use in your kitchen for easy slicing and chopping!

Japanese knives have earned admiration all across the planet for their beautiful and detailed designs. They also are excellent in their cutting skills. 

Best Japanese Chef Knives: Summary

Best Japanese Chef KnivesKnown for Sizes
Shun Classic 8-inch KnifeManeuverability and lightweight8 inches
Global Chef’s KnifeEasy to hold and Ergonomic8 inches
Miyabi Chef’s KnifeLightweight and comfort9 inches
Kuma 8-inch Chef KnifeQuality of material and comfort8 inches
Shun Cutlery Premium 8-inch KnifeLightweight and easy to hold8 inches
MAC MTH-80 Professional Hollow Edge Chef’s KnifeGiftable and lightweight8 inches
Tojiro DP Gyutou Durable and easy to hold8.2 inches
YOSHIHIRO Gyutou Chef’s KnifeLightweight and craftsmanship8.25 inches

The blades of the best Japanese chef knives are normally thin and delicate, which means that they can break easily if you do not take proper care of them. So, Japanese chef knives are not at all ideal if you are quite clumsy in the kitchen. 

With the best Japanese chef knives, you can get thin and precise cuts, helping you to create a beautiful and eye-catching presentation. You can now create that five-star sushi restaurant look at home.

Which is the best Japanese chef knife?

My team tested 10+ Japanese chef knives to find the best one based on Weight, balance, and size. We found Shun Classic 8′ to be the best one. 

Shun Classic 8’’ is an excellent grip knife with a PakkaWood handle. It’s light to cut vegetables and heavy enough to cut meat. This Chef knife’s blade is made of Shun’s proprietary VG-MAX steel and is covered in Damascus steel. It has great edge retention properties as well. It’s available on Amazon for sale.

Japanese chef knives are a huge part of Japanese cuisine, which is why they have become so popular. These knives work perfectly while also ensuring that they enhance and preserve the ingredients, and help to accentuate the flavor of the dish you are cooking. 

If you are looking to change the knife of your kitchen, I recommend you check out this list of the best Japanese chef knives that I have tried and tested. I am sure you will find your perfect fit here.

Top Japanese Chef Knives

Shun Classic 8

shun classic 8

This is the knife that gives you a solid grip and has a good weight. Even with that, it is light enough to slice all vegetables. But do not be fooled by that. This excellent knife is heavy enough to cut meat. 

The Shun Classic 8-inch Chef knife has everything that you need in a good knife. The handle of the knife is made of PakkaWood. The edge is also very sharp, which is perfect for helping you with all your slicing and chopping tasks in the kitchen. It’s one of the best Japanese chef knives that I’ve used. 

The blade of the knife is made out of Shun’s proprietary VG-MAX steel and it is covered in Damascus steel. Shun Japanese knives are one of the best Japanese chef knives.

The knife has been designed in such a way that it makes for the most precise cuts. It also has excellent edge retention properties. It’s the best Japanese chef’s knife brand because I love the grip and the ergonomic design on this knife.

You can go on for years without having to sharpen these types of Japanese knives.

Key Features:

  • Excellent grip
  • Light to cut vegetables, but heavy enough to cut meat
  • PakkaWood handle
  • Sharp edge that is perfect for all slicing and chopping jobs
  • Blade is made of Shun’s proprietary VG-MAX steel
  • Covered in Damascus steel
  • Perfect for precise cuts
  • Excellent edge retention properties


  • Ergonomic design 
  • Easy to use
  • Sharp blade
  • Quality material 


  • Not for XL hands


  • Material: 9/10
  • Sharpness: 9/10
  • Design: 9.5/10
  • Affordability: 8/10

Global Chef’s Knife

best Japanese chef knives

Global knives are different from all other knives that you will ever come across. This is one of the best Japanese chef knives on amazon that’s made using a single piece of stainless steel. 

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This ensures that the blade is relatively thinner than most others. This knife has a proportionally wider bottom than most other Japanese knives. The bolster of the knife is thinner; this is the part where the blade meets the handle. 

The handle is dimpled and gives you an excellent grip. I use this knife to cut meat and I find it extremely easy as the edges are extremely sharp.

It’s one of the best Japanese chef knives with a great grip. Get this knife and you’ll know I called it one of the best Japanese chef knives. I’ve been using this Japanese chef knife for a long time now and I’d say it’s pretty durable.

It does not slip through your fingers. There is also a very interesting thing about this knife. The handle is filled with sand to give it a balanced weight. 

Key Features:

  • Made using a single piece of stainless steel
  • Thinner than most other knives
  • Proportionally wider bottom than other Japanese knives
  • Sharp edge
  • Perfect for hacking through the meat
  • Dimpled handle
  • Excellent grip
  • The handle is filled with sand


  • Weightless knife
  • Durable 
  • Affordable
  • Quality stainless steel material 


  • Can lead to injuries


  • Material: 10/10
  • Sharpness: 9.5/10
  • Design: 10/10
  • Affordability: 9.5/10

Miyabi Chef’s Knife

gyutou knife

The Miyabi Chef’s knife has a handle that is made of Masur Birch, which is unlike handles that are made of dark wood or stainless steel. It really stands out from the rest. This knife looks absolutely marvelous. 

Apart from that, it also feels extremely good in the hands. The wood handle of this knife is quite soft and smooth. This is one of the best Japanese chef knives for beginners.

It has a light, marbled color that beautifully complements the steel blade. The blade has an eye-catching floral damask pattern. I love the Miyabi chef knife for its quality material. I also like how weightless it feels when you’re working. It’s one of the top Japanese kitchen knives

The quality of the blade is excellent and comes with a powder steel core that is surrounded by 100 layers of two different types of steel. It also has excellent edge retention properties, which means that you do not have to worry about sharpening your blades for years.

Key Features:

  • Handle that is made of Masur Birch
  • Absolutely gorgeous in looks
  • Feels great in the hands
  • Soft and smooth wooden handle
  • Light, marble color that complements the steel handle
  • Eye-catching floral damask pattern
  • Excellent quality blade
  • Edge retention properties


  • 3 sizes
  • Lightweight and nimble 
  • Sharp edges 
  • Quality stainless steel material 


  • No value for money 


  • Material: 10/10
  • Sharpness: 9/10
  • Design: 9.5/10
  • Affordability: 7/10

Kuma 8-inch Chef Knife

gyutou knives

The Kuma 8-inch knife has a thin blade that makes it an excellent choice for cutting vegetables or for slicing through delicate cuts of meat. 

The knife is made of 67 layers of high carbon steel. Thanks to this craftsmanship, the knife is very strong and is also resistant to chipping. 

This is the best chef knife that was gifted to me by my mother. It’s one of the best Japanese chef knives for slicing and dicing veggies.

The handle is a little beveled. It feels very strong and sturdy when held in the hand. The blade of the knife runs through the handle and gives you excellent balance when you are using it. The knife is hand-finished to make sure that the edges are quite sharp. 

Key Features:

  • Thin blade
  • Perfect for cutting vegetables
  • Can be used to slice through delicate pieces of meat
  • Strong
  • Resistant to chipping
  • Beveled handle
  • Gives you good balance when using
  • Hand-finished to give the knife a sharp edge

Shun Cutlery Premier 8

Shun Cutlery Premier 8

The Shun Cutlery Premier 8-inch knife gives you a controlled grip. The contoured handle of this knife is made with PakkaWood. This shun knife is one of the best Japanese chef knives.

It is slightly thicker than the other knives, but it is because of this that the knife rests easily on your palm. The blade is also thinner than most others, making the knife lighter to use and handle. 

The knife has a hammered finish, which gives it a stunning look that is hard to look away from. The knife is so beautiful, you can also gift it to your loved ones.

Key Features:

  • Controlled grip
  • Contoured handle that is made of PakkaWood
  • Slightly thicker than other knives
  • Thinner blade
  • Lighter to use and handle
  • Hammered finish that gives the handle a stunning look
  • Perfect gift for your loved one

MAC MTH-80 Professional Hollow Edge Chef’s Knife

japanese knife types

This knife is extremely lightweight and sharp that makes it your perfect companion in the kitchen. The blade of the knife is thin and it dimples toward the edge. 

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The dimple in the blade has a specific purpose. It helps you glide the knife smoothly through sticky foods, such as potatoes. 

You can easily and comfortably cut all your vegetables with the help of this knife. However, it is recommended that you immediately hand wash and dry this knife after using it. 

This helps prevent rusting of the blade that is made of high-carbon and aluminum alloy. This Mac knife is one of the best Japanese chef knives for meats.

Key Features:

  • Lightweight and sharp 
  • Perfect companion in the kitchen
  • Thin blade that dimples toward the edge
  • Helps you glide through sticky foods smoothly
  • Helps you cut vegetables easily and comfortably
  • Recommended to hand wash and dry the knife immediately after use to prevent rusting
  • Made of high-carbon and aluminum alloy

Tojiro DP Gyutou – 8.2″

gyutou knife 1

This is one of the most popular and best-selling knives that are available. The knife is extremely lightweight with its handle and also blade. 

This gyutou knife is one of the best Japanese chef knives in this company. Tojiro also produces the best japanese knife sets.

The blade of the knife is thin and is perfect for precise cuts. The blade is made of stainless steel Gyutou, which is quite easy to sharpen. It’s even edged and comfortable for both left and right handed people.

Key Features:

  • One of the most popular and best-selling knives
  • Extremely lightweight
  • Thin blade that is perfect for precise cuts
  • Easy to sharpen
  • Edge-retention properties

YOSHIHIRO Gyutou Chef’s Knife

best japanese knives on amazon

Yoshihiro is known for its excellent and high-quality knives. This Gyutou Chef’s knife is yet another amazing knife by the brand. 

The blade of this knife is stain-resistant and is made of VG-10 hammered Damascus steel. Yoshihiro knives are known to be among the best Japanese chef knives and definitely this one is one of them.

The handle is made using Shitan rosewood and comes with a mahogany bolster. The blade is made with the perfect balance of modern innovation and ancient Japanese blacksmith techniques. 

The knife is excellent as it helps you cut meat, fish, and vegetables quite easily. The knife also comes with a magnolia saya blade cover to keep the knife safe.

Key Features:

  • A stain-resistant blade that is made of VG-10 hammered Damascus steel
  • Shitan rosewood handle 
  • Comes with a mahogany bolster
  • The blade is made of modern innovation and ancient Japanese techniques
  • Can help you cut meat, fish, and vegetables
  • Comes with a blade cover to keep the knife safe and protected

How to choose the best Japanese Chef Knife?

To choose the best Japanese chef’s knife, consider the following factors:

  • Blade type: Japanese chef’s knives come in a variety of blade types, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. The most popular types are:
    • Gyuto: An all-around chef’s knife that can be used for a variety of tasks, including chopping, slicing, and dicing.
    • Santoku: A versatile knife that is similar to a gyuto, but with a slightly shorter blade and a more pronounced sheep’s foot shape.
    • Bunka: A hybrid knife that combines the features of a gyuto and a santoku. It has a slightly shorter blade than a gyuto, but a more pronounced sheep’s foot shape than a santoku.
    • Nakiri: A vegetable knife with a thin, rectangular blade that is ideal for slicing and chopping vegetables.
    • Usuba: A vegetable knife with a thin, rectangular blade and a single bevel. It is traditionally used for Japanese cuisine, such as sushi and sashimi.
  • Blade material: Japanese chef’s knives are typically made from high-carbon steel or stainless steel. High-carbon steel knives are sharper and more durable, but they require more maintenance to prevent rust and corrosion. Stainless steel knives are less sharp than high-carbon steel knives, but they are also easier to care for.
  • Blade length: Japanese chef’s knives typically come in blade lengths ranging from 180mm to 240mm. An 210mm blade is a good all-around length for most home cooks.
  • Handle material: Japanese chef’s knives typically have wooden handles. Wooden handles are comfortable to grip and they look beautiful, but they can require more maintenance than plastic handles.
  • Budget: Japanese chef’s knives can range in price from a few dollars to several hundred dollars. It is important to set a budget before you start shopping so that you don’t overspend.

Once you have considered all of these factors, you can start shopping for Japanese chef’s knives. It is a good idea to try out different knives before you buy one to see which one feels the most comfortable in your hand. You should also ask the salesperson about the care and maintenance of the knife.

Where to buy Japanese chef knives online?

Here are some of the best places to buy Japanese chef knives online:

  • Amazon: Amazon is a good place to buy Japanese chef knives, but it is important to do your research to make sure that you are buying from a reputable seller.
  • Chef Knives To Go: Chef Knives To Go is another reputable online retailer that specializes in Japanese chef knives. They have a wide selection of knives from all of the major brands, as well as a variety of knife accessories.
  • Japanesechefsknife.com: Japanesechefsknife.com is a Japanese online retailer that ships worldwide. They have a wide selection of knives from all of the major brands, as well as their own line of knives.

Best Japanese Chef Knives on Amazon: FAQs

Which are the best Japanese knives?

Shun Classic 8
Global Chef’s Knife
Miyabi Chef’s Knife
Kuma 8-inch Chef Knife
Shun Cutlery Premier 8 
MAC MTH-80 Professional Hollow Edge Chef’s Knife 
Tojiro DP Gyutou 8.2”
Yoshihiro Gyutou Chef’s Knife

What is the best Japanese chef knife around $50?

The best Japanese chef knife around $50 is the Imarku 8-Inch Chef Knife. It is a versatile knife that can be used for a variety of tasks, including chopping, slicing, and dicing. The blade is made from high-carbon stainless steel, which is sharp and durable. The handle is made from pakkawood, which is comfortable to grip and easy to clean

Are Japanese chef knives worth it?

Japanese chef knives are a good investment for serious home cooks and professional chefs. They are made with high-quality materials and have sharp blades that can make cooking easier and more efficient. However, they can be expensive and require regular maintenance. If you are a casual cook or on a tight budget, then a good quality chef’s knife from another brand may be sufficient for your needs.

Is gyuto or Santoku better?

In general, gyuto knives are considered to be more versatile than santoku knives. This is because their longer blade and curved profile make them better suited for a wider range of tasks, such as chopping meat, slicing vegetables, and mincing herbs. Santoku knives are still excellent all-purpose knives, but they are better suited for tasks that require push cuts, such as slicing meat and vegetables into thin pieces.

Are Japanese knives better than German knives?

If we compare Japanese knives with German knives, we can see that the Japanese ones are lighter and sharper in comparison. Being thinner, Japanese knives are quite fragile and can break easily.

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The blade can chip or the tip can break, so Japanese knives require a lot of maintenance. Japanese knives are thin and have a light construction, which makes them perfect for the most delicate of tasks.

These are suitable for cutting vegetables or slicing fish. German knives, on the other hand, are quite bulky and heavy. But unlike Japanese knives, German ones are sturdier and come with thicker blades. You require to sharpen these German knives quite often to retain the sharpness. These knives are suitable for heavy-duty tasks like breaking down the chicken. 

What tasks is a chef’s knife best used for?

A chef’s knife is used for chopping, mincing, dicing, and slicing. It’s the most functional and versatile type of knife. It can be used for all the different cutting tasks, from fine herbs to vegetables to proteins like chicken or steak. 

The chef’s knife is designed to cut with a rocking motion, up and down, and to make cuts that are small to large in size, depending on the pressure applied. A large knife will also do smaller jobs, just not as quickly as a paring knife or serrated knife.

Why are Japanese chef knives so good?

The Japanese kitchen knives are incredibly sharp and can be used to prepare a wide range of foods. They can also be used for cutting vegetables, preparing meat, and even boning chicken. The harder the steel, the more brittle it is and the Japanese steel are also very thin, around 2-3 mm. Japanese chef knives are also lighter and well-balanced. 

Are Japanese chef knives worth it?

Chef knives from Japan are worth it because they are made from high-quality steel blade that holds their edge for many uses. The metal is not too hard, so it will not chip or break. The metal is also rust-resistant, so the knife will not rust or corrode if left wet. The handle is also made from strong materials so it will not crack or break easily.

Are Japanese chef knives good for boning chicken?

Japanese chef knives are good for boning chicken as they properly remove the meat and will make it be more tender, juicy, and tasty. They’re extremely sharp with curved edges that help in quick and easy bone removal. 

The Best Kitchen Companion!

These were some of the best Japanese chef knives that you can get. With these excellent knives, your job in the kitchen becomes very easy and comfortable. If you are looking for a change in the kitchen, get one of these best Japanese chef knives today!

Hope this article- the best Japanese chef knives helped you pick the best one for slicing your veggies and meat.

Also Read:

  1. Types of Japanese Knives
Shun Classic 8
top japanese chef knives

Check out best Japanese chef knives- a curated list of top recommended chef knives to work in the kitchen like a professional. Also, check out Shun Classic 8 which is the best chef knife for its weight, balance, and size. Read further to know more.

Product SKU: BJDF877657687

Product Brand: Shun

Product Currency: USD

Product Price: 127.95

Price Valid Until: 2022

Product In-Stock: InStock

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