Is the Chef’s Knife or Santoku Knife the Best Knife for Food Prep?

Is the Chef’s Knife or Santoku Knife the Best Knife for Food Prep?

Blades That Shaped the History of Knives Reading Is the Chef’s Knife or Santoku Knife the Best Knife for Food Prep? 5 minutes Next Basic Kitchen Skills Everyone Should Know
Santoku knives and chef’s knives have become the “go-to” knife for many expert cooks. They are adaptable and can be used for many different tasks in the kitchen. Santoku knives are actually a type of specialty knife, however, they have become a common multipurpose culinary knife.  The principle distinction between a santoku knife and a chef’s knife set is that the santoku knife is more qualified for cutting where you need truly accurate cuts. It's harder to accomplish a similar degree of exactness with a best chef’s knife. Santoku cuts also require an alternate cutting system requiring the chef to move in an advance and in reverse movement, while a standard chef’s knife requires a rocking to and for movement. Also, remember that there are multiple styles of chef’s knife.  In this blog post, we are going to contrast and compare the Chef’s knife and santoku knife. Continue reading to learn more and when you are ready to purchase high-quality culinary knives, shop the tactical culinary knives at DFACKTO.    

The Presentation of the Knife 

The Santoku knife, or the Santoku bocho knife (its full name), translates to “three uses.” The santoku knife is perfect for mincing, dicing, and cutting, as it features a straight edge with a sheepsfoot blade. These knives evolved from the customary Japanese vegetable knife which has a rectangular blade.  French- or German-style chef’s knives have a curved belly which allows the sharp edge to move in a rocking motion while cutting against a cutting board. The long cutting edge of the chef’s knife is ideal for cutting through meat. Chef's knife set is viewed as a general kitchen tool utilized for a multitude of culinary tasks.

Style and Performance 

For most culinary specialists, the most significant aspects of a knife are its style and execution. Style alludes to the shape of the knife and execution alludes to its sharpness and how it acts while being used. 

Santoku Knife 

Some Santoku knives are honed on only one side of the blade. This is the customary Eastern way and allows the chef to have more control while cutting. However, most Santoku knives are a mix of West meets East, in that the edge is bent with a level front line and the honing is 50/50 on each side. This makes for simpler honing with a traditional sharpening steel or pull-through sharpener. A Santoku knife is ideal for detail work because of the light, sharp edge, which can make more slender cuts.  Japanese knives require a different handling technique compared to Western knives in that they cut through food in an advance and in reverse movement. Instead, Western knives require a rocking movement, which for the most part makes thicker cuts and takes more time to cut than the speedier Santoku knife. 

Chef’s Knife 

French- and German-style knives will generally have a straight edge with a slight bend from the heel to the tip of the edge. Chef’s knives are preferred to the Santoku knife when a stronger blade is required to cut through tougher food like proteins and root vegetables.  The slim, adaptable blade and sheepsfoot tip of a Santoku knife means that the knife does not adapt as well to tasks such as deboning meat or slicing through tough vegetables like butternut squash or turnips. In addition, Santoku knives are more inclined to chip. Best chef's knife is ideal for cutting vegetables, meat, and fish. Chef’s knives can also be utilized to finely slice, cut, or mince herbs. For some experts and home cooks, the chef’s knife is the best multi-purpose knife in the kitchen for almost any task. 

What to Consider When Choosing a Culinary Knife

Blade Length 

A santoku knife has a shorter blade than a chef’s knife and is around 6-inches in length. This shorter sharp edge gives the chef more control, which can be especially valuable for less experienced cooks. The typical length of a chef’s knife blade is about 8-inches. However, some are available with blades as long as 14-inches.  

Edge Material 

Most culinary knife blades are produced using tempered steel, but the type and finish of the steel used is dependant upon the manufacturer. For instance, Santoku knife manufacturer, Kai, makes their Shun Classic knife from V-Gold-10-arrangement steel inside a Damascus cladding. V-Gold-10-arrangement steel is produced in Japan and is a solid high-carbon steel that offers the erosion resistance of tempered steel. Western knives are typically made from milder, yet harder, steel and have thicker edges. Their blade needs to be honed and sharpened more often. It's the delicate quality of the steel edge that makes chef’s knife’s blade less inclined to chipping. 

Which Style of Culinary Knife is Ideal? 

In the end, the knife you choose will be the one that fits your needs the best. Santoku knives may have a shorter blade, but they are ideal for more detailed tasks, whereas chef’s knives feature a longer blade and can cut through harder material such as tough proteins.  At DFACKTO, we offer a santoku knife and a best chef’s knife because we know how important it is to have both in your kitchen. Shop our tactical culinary knives today and don’t forget to check out or mobility set, which includes all five of our knives from the Interceptor Series including a chef’s knife set and santoku knife.