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Which chef's knife is right for you? 4 ways to tell

At Swich, we aren’t believers in one-size-fits-all when it comes to cooking. And that’s no exception when you’re selecting a chef’s knife (THE most important tool for anyone who wants to become a confident cook). The right knife for you will likely look and, more importantly, feel different than the right knife for the person next to you. But how can you tell which chef’s knife is best for you and your cooking practice? We’ve got four tips to help you with your selection. 

4 tips for finding the best chef’s knife for you

1. Consider the budget

Knives range from very cheap ($4) to very expensive ($650+). Remember, of all the knives in your kitchen tool kit, you’ll use your chef’s knife the most. So it’s an important investment, but make sure your purchase aligns with your budget. 

2. Check how the knife feels in your hand

The feel and balance of the knife is crucial. Just like you’d test a tennis racket or golf club, you should pay careful attention to how a knife feels in your hand. Is it too heavy? Lightweight? Does the handle feel secure in your palm? The knife that fits your hand well will be the knife that helps you take your cooking to a higher level. 

3. Pay attention to the size

While professional chefs often use longer knives that are 10 or 12-inches, an at-home cook often feels most comfortable using 6 or 8-inch knives. Select the one that you feel confident using regularly, and you can always grow your collection in the future. 

4. Test it 

A store should let you test the knife before you buy it. Try chopping up spices, vegetables, or fruit. Ideally, you’ll experiment with a range of cuts such as mincing, dicing, and slicing. 

Why is a chef's knife so important in the kitchen?

We find that about 80% of cooking is about breaking down ingredients and much of this is done with your knife. No cookbook, no food show, no smell, taste, or travel experience can connect you to your kitchen and dining table like a knife can. Additionally, most cooks in a plant-based kitchen don’t need a full set of knives—just a few are enough to get started on a successful culinary path. It’s about quality, not quantity! 

Looking to improve your chef's knife skills?

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Tags: Learn To Cook Cooking Tips Plant Based Cooking
Leave a Comment

Suzette V. ( 2yr ) – Very useful tips,thanks.

Swich C. ( 2yr ) – Hi Suzette! We are happy you find them useful.

Alice C. ( 2yr ) – Never really thought about the way a knife feels and is used. These are great tips for starting out. Thank you

Swich C. ( 2yr ) – Glad you found these tips helpful!