When it comes to chopping vegetables and other ingredients, there is nothing better than a nakiri knife. A nakiri knife is a flat blade knife that is not only used by professionals world over but is also an excellent knife for beginners. Characterized by its straight blade edge and squared-off tips, the nakiri knife allows you to cut all the way through to the cutting board without having to use a horizontal push or pull. Not every nakiri knife is the same and the experience you get from each is very different. Therefore, we are here with a list of a few popular nakiri knives, that have been used by both professionals and beginners and have been some of the most popular in their category. All the nakiri knives mentioned in this review will help you make a decision on which nakiri knife to select for your kitchen.
Why Do You Need A Best Nakiri Knife?
So why would you need a Nakiri knife just to hop the vegetables? When it comes to the best nakiri knife, they have used to cut vegetables in cases where precision and finesse are needed. If you ever wondered why each vegetable in the restaurant has been cut up to the same and delicate size, then the reason behind it is a good nakiri knife. It has a flat edge like a slim cleaver or a fat straight edge razor, but the blade is very fine and holds a keen edge. Although there are different kinds and brands of nakiri knife available in the market, only a few can provide you the best quality performance.
A good nakiri knife is very versatile when it comes to cutting the vegetables in different sizes and shapes. Since the blade is precision made, it can provide one of the cleanest cuts, on any kind of raw vegetable. Also, these blades can cut from the thinnest to the thickest.
Made from high carbon and flexible Japanese steel, the nakiri knives are very light in weight. Since the size of the knife is flatter, the knife makers try to reduce the overall weight, without compromising on the strength. These knives are very easy to maneuver and use.
Generous Blade Length
The straight blade edge and squared-off tips are the most highlighted features of this knife. A wide and lengthy blade is the main characteristic of this which not only makes it look beautiful but also provides a great weight balance, good handling, and around 7 inches or more of blade length.
1. Shun Cutlery Classic 6.5” Nakiri Knife
- The Nakiri Knife is part of Shun’s Classic line of tasteful and contemporary cutlery; beauty, form and function are fused in this elegantly handcrafted, useful and high-performing kitchen tool
- A traditional Japanese knife for working with vegetables and produce, the Classic Nakiri has a 6.5” blade made from Shun’s proprietary VG-MAX steel clad with 68 layers of Damascus stainless steel
- Swift, sharp and clean, the Classic Nakiri is great for kitchen needs like julienning carrots, slicing tomatoes, dicing onions, chopping peppers, peeling potatoes, trimming celery or paring avocados
Shun has been one of the most popular Japanese made Knife brands and this Classic Nakiri knife is no exception to the kind of quality they provide. This 6.5-inch Nakiri knife is a part of their classic series which comes with a bigger and wide blade and has some amazing properties. The knife has been built well and can be easily handled by a professional chef or amateur.
This knife has some of the most exclusive features of Shun, such as the use of patented VG-Max steel, which has been clad with 68 layers of Damascus stainless steel, providing maximum durability and strength to the blade, something very unique to Shun. The patented steel has increased carbon content that makes it harder and stronger. The blade has a beautiful Damascus pattern which prevents the food from sticking and makes the blade corrosion resistant. It also has a D shaped pakkawood handle which provides superior grip and easy handling and maneuverability. Overall, the knife is premium and will surely fulfill all the requirements of a perfect nakiri knife.
- Ultra-strong and durable VG-Max steel construction
- Damascus pattern design and pakkawood handle
- Good edge retention and corrosion resistant
- A bit expensive in its category.
2. Yoshihiro Nakiri Vegetable Knife
- Forged and hammered with 16 layers of steel in the Damascus tradition with a VG-10 Core, the VG-10 Hammered Damascus Series has been a perennial best seller, combining performance, beauty, and extraordinary v
- One of the most popular knives that a cook can have today is a Japanese Vegetable knife known as a Nakiri knife. The Nakiri is a Japanese double edged knife with a flat cutting edge. The flatness allows for the whole length of the knife to come in contact with the cutting board with each stroke. This is particularly helpful when chopping vegetables since it eliminates those imperfect cuts in which ingredients are hanging by a string.
- Reminiscent of a small cleaver, this knife is cherished for its ability to chop through root vegetables to thinly slicing delicate tomatoes. From prepping greens for a salad to chopping vegetables for a main dish, the simplest of tasks are elevated with a handcrafted knife that is as beautiful as it is functional.
Yoshihiro has been one of the oldest knife making brands globally. With the experience of more than 100 years in knife making, this brand makes some of the best knives in the market. This nakiri knife from Yoshihiro has a very attractive design and enhanced functionality. Made from a core made from VG-10 steel at Rockwell hardness of 60, this is one of the strongest blades in its category. It has been Forged and hammered with 16 layers of steel in the Damascus tradition, giving it an attractive look of Damascus pattern and enhanced durability.
The blade has excellent edge retention and has a slim design profile which makes it lighter in weight and easy to handle. The blade eliminates any kind of friction, which makes it smoother on the board while in use. It comes with a triple-riveted mahogany handle, which has been ergonomically designed to provide a superior grip. The knife is unlikely to break under any type of pressure due to the durable and strong build. This knife is a perfect combination of a strong and durable Japanese blade and a premium western style handle.
- Beautiful Damascus design
- Good edge retention
- Strong and durable construction
- Full tang mahogany handle
- Handle does not have a universal grip
3. KAI Wasabi Black Stainless Steel Nakiri Knife
- 1K6 high-carbon, stainless steel blade for edge retention
- Rat tailed tang
- Double beveled blade
This is certainly one of the most durable and strong nakiri knives in the market. Made with traditional Japanese knife making art, this blade has been forged with 1K6 high-carbon, stainless steel for maximum durability and strength. Although the design is not that of a traditional Nakiri knife, it does not disappoint in any way when it comes to functionality. The knife has been ergonomically designed which brings in a lot of smoothness in the movement of the knife, making it faster and easier to use.
The rat-tailed tang of this knife gives it a perfect weight balance and good handling at the bottom to make sure that the knife is easily maneuverable. The Double beveled blade and a 16-degree blade angle would make using the knife much easier and fluid. The design of the blade allows less or no friction while in use onboard, making it much smoother to use. With a good blade comes a good handle, which has been made from Polypropylene, blended with bamboo and an antibacterial agent. It is one of a kind handle and is perfect for any kind of grip and force.
- Use of 1K6 high-carbon, stainless steel makes the blade stronger
- Good edge retention
- Antibacterial handle
- Strong and robust construction
- Heavy in weight
4. ZWILLING Pro 6.5-inch Nakiri Knife
- Curved bolster encourages cutting with improved precision, safety and comfort
- POM handle is durable and resiliant
- SIGMAFORGE knife is forged from a single piece of Special Formula High-Carbon NO STAIN stainless steel
There is no need to introduce Zwilling when it comes to knives. For those who know about it, understand the kind of tradition it carries along with their knives, they understand that they have the best quality german blade in existence. From its design to construction, everything has been done through precision-controlled laser technology. When it comes to the blade, it has been forged from a single piece of Special Formula High-Carbon, no stain stainless steel. Ice hardened using their special technique, this Fridour blade gives superior resilience and the blade will stay sharper for a very long time.
Zwilling knife also comes with a curved bolster that provides improvised precision and comfort. The knife comes with a POM handle, that is durable, resilient and has been ergonomically made to support any kind of grip for comfortable usage. The blade has been honed with precision and the laser-controlled edge ensures ideal cutting angle for sharpness and durability. Although it is expensive, it does provide the user with an experience that only a premium knife could give. The knife is a genuine value for money and should surely be a part of your knife set.
- Premium built quality using the laser cutting
- Made from special formula steel for enhanced durability.
- Ice hardened for increased strength
5. Wusthof Classic 7″ Nakiri Knife
- Wusthof Classic 7" Nikiri Hollow Edge Knife - Item #4193-7
- 3 Locations on Knife may be Engraved. Traditional Rotary Engraving - Not Black Laser Print, that will wear off. - You can even get a Symbol or Chinese Caligraphy - Just enter Symbol # from chart
- Knife is Made In Germany, Fully Forged, Ergonomic Handle
One of the most popular German knife brands to provide premium quality blades is Wusthof. Wusthof has been known for providing some of the best german blades with ergonomic western design. Their knives provide precision cuts and are very comfortable to handle. When it comes to this 7-inch nakiri knife, it displays a perfect combination of strength and durability. The construction of this blade has been done using the special X50CrMo14 steel, which combines a lot of different metals like chromium, molybdenum, and vanadium, which not only makes the knife unique but also adds a lot of features to it as well. Due to this combination, the knife gets better edge retention, resistance to rust and corrosion is easy to clean, and is completely stain resistant.
The combination of metal also makes the blade much stronger and durable. Using their patented proprietary Precision Edge Technology (PEtec), the laser-cut knives have been edged at a perfect angle, which makes their knives 20% sharper than any knife in this category. While creating these knives, precision robots sharpen the blade on a whetstone and it is then given a final polish using a special disc. The blade’s performance is breathtaking and the triple-riveted handle, made of Polyoxymethylene(POM) provides superior grip and comfort while in use. This synthetic material on the handle resists fading and discoloration, and it feels natural in the hand as well.
- Great value for money knives
- Superior strength and durability due to the combination of many metals in construction
- 20% sharper blades with the edge retention and sleek profile
- The beautiful hollow ground design
- Handle quality could have been better
6. Miyabi Mizu SG2 6.5-inch Nakiri Knife
- Micro Carbide powder steel SG2 construction (MC63); core is surrounded with a hammered stainless steel Damascus textured finish
- 63 Rockwell hardness; special Criodur ice-hardening process maximizes properties of the steel
- Traditional Japanese blade hand-honed to a 9 to 12° angle
Miyabi has one unique feature that makes their Japanese blades much better in its category. Their blades are much sleeker and carry a slim profile, which not only results in reduced weight but also increases the usability and handling of the knife. Being slim does not mean it is not strong. In fact, their blades are some of the strongest in the offering. Made from Micro Carbide powder steel SG2 construction (MC63); the core is surrounded with a hammered stainless steel Damascus textured finish. With 63 Rockwell hardness, these blades have a lot of strength and are very durable due to the special Criodur ice-hardening process that maximizes properties of the steel.
The traditional Japanese blade has been angled at 9-12 degrees for the perfect cutting angle. It comes with a Micarta D shaped handle and a mosaic accent to make it look attractive and provide a comfortable and easy to handle grip at the same time. It is complemented with red spacers and a metal end cap with a logo. These premium blades have been manufactured in Japan, using the traditional knife arts and best laser technology.
- High quality steel construction
- The sleek and sharper blade profile
- Ice hardened to 63 Rockwell hardness
- Very expensive
7. Enso Nakiri Knife
- Japanese Nakiri Vegetable Knife crafted of VG10 stainless steel cutting core for excellent edge retention; 6.5 inch blade (12 inches overall); Weighs 8.2 ounces (232 grams)
- 37-layer stainless Damascus blades with hammered (tsuchime) finish; Rockwell Hardness 61
- 12 degree double bevel edge for both right and left-handed use
Enso has been one of the most known premium cutlery brands known globally. This nakiri knife has been created with VG10 stainless steel cutting core for excellent edge retention. The 6.5-inch blade weighs only 8.2 ounces and is great to handle and maneuver. The blade has 37-layer stainless Damascus layers and the blades have a hammered (tsuchime) finish. The blade has Rockwell Hardness 61, making it strong, durable, and very sharp. The edge retention on these blades is exceptional and you will not feel the need to sharpen the knife regularly.
The knife has 12 degrees double bevel edge for both right and left-handed use. When it comes to handling, it has a black canvas micarta symmetrical oval-shaped handle, for a similar look and feel to wood without the worry of cracking. These knives have been made through the handcrafted Japanese art of knife making and come with a lifetime warranty which ensures the customers of their quality. What attracts the customer most is the beautiful and attractive hammered design, which does not allow the food to stick.
- Beautifully crafted blade with hammered design
- Made with strong VG10 stainless steel
- 12-degree of the beveled edge.
- Edge retention could have been better
8. Wusthof Classic Hollow Edge Nakiri Knife
- The Classic Nakiri Knife combines the features of a chef's knife with the versatility of a vegetable cleaver
- Granton-edge blade, angled on both sides for slicing and chopping, is 30% sharper and holds its edge 30% longer than ordinary Asian-style blades
- No-stick Granton edge makes a cut that forms air pockets, allowing food to release easier from the blade
Another one of Wusthof premium knives is this 7-inch hollow edge nakiri knife. Manufactured using the latest in robotics and laser technology, these knives are a perfect combination of handcrafted finesse and latest technology. This classic Nakiri Knife combines the features of a chef’s knife with the versatility of a vegetable cleaver. The Granton-edge blade, angled on both sides for slicing and chopping, makes it 30% sharper and holds its edge 30% longer than ordinary Asian-style blades. The knife comes with nonstick Granton edges which makes a cut in the knife that forms air pockets. It helps to allow the easier release of food from the blade.
Apart from the supreme built quality and precision design, the ergonomically designed knives come with a high-impact handle that is riveted to the full tang for superior balance and maneuverability. The overall balance of the knife is great and is very easy to use for both a professional and a beginner. The even weight balance of the knife does not add any strain to the hands or wrist, making it easier to work with.
- Highly durable and robust
- Non-stick Granton edge for nonstick blade surface
- 30% sharer and durable blades
- Needs regular sharpening
9. Bigsun Nakiri Vegetable Usuba knife
- 【Professional Nakiri&Usuba Knife】 It’s a traditional Japanese vegetable knife and is great to have, especially, if you're a lover of soups, salads, herbs, and vegetables. It lends well to chopping and its thin and flat blade edge is designed to make full contact with your cutting surface for a full cut with less chance for vegetables to still be sticking together by a thread.
- 【Elegant Hammered Blade】An elegant hammered blade is a stylish yet functional design eliminating friction and keeping food from sticking to the blade.The VG-10 Damascus steel is stain resistant,This means that they resist the forming of rust when it is left wet during its use. The user is free to use the knife for extended periods without the worry of any rust buildup.
- 【Ultra Sharp】High-quality 73 layers Damascus steel, high hardness (60±2HRC), 15-18 degrees cutting edge,the edge is super sharp,the blade is durable,and the sharpness can keep a long time.
If you are looking for a high-end nakiri knife minus the hefty and premium price tag, then this Bigsun knife is meant for you. The knife has been designed to cut any kind of vegetables but can also be used to cut down meat easily. Similar to other premium-quality knives in the segment, it has been made using the VG-10 steel core which provides the blade with extreme strength and durability. Around the core you will see the 73 layers of softer Damascus steel, which also provides a beautiful Damascus pattern on the blade, making it look attractive.
The blade looks much sleeker and sharper which prevents friction and food from sticking to the blade. The wide, thin, and flat edge makes full contact while cutting and the 15-18 angled edge is sharp enough to handle almost any kind of vegetable. Although the edge retention is not as good and you might require it to sharpen after a regular period of time. The full tang knife provides good control and grip while in use and ultra-premium acrylic resin and pakkawood handle provides a good grip and control.
- Made with a strong VG-10 steel
- Stain-resistant and well balanced
- Superior grip handle
- Half the price of what is offered in the same category.
- Does not have good edge retention
10. DALSTRONG Nakiri Vegetable Knife – Shogun Series X
- The Ultimate Vegetable Knife: A Dalstrong culinary revolution combining outstanding and award-winning craftsmanship, cutting-edge breakthrough technology, awe-inspiring design, and the absolute best materials available. Peak performance never looked so good to you or your wallet.
- Unrivaled Performance: Ruthlessly sharp scalpel like edge is hand finished to a mirror polish at 8-12° per side using the traditional 3-step Honbazuke method. Nitrogen cooled for enhanced harness, flexibility and corrosion resistance. Full tang for superb robustness and triple riveted for even more resilience. The Shogun Series X's exquisite hammered tsuchime finish reduces drag and minimizes stuck on food
- Dalstrong Power: This nakiri vegetable knife features an ultra sharp AUS-10V Japanese super steel cutting core at 62+ Rockwell hardness: extraordinary performance and edge retention. 66 layers of premium high-carbon stainless steel layers ensure exceptional strength, durability and stain resistance. Perfectly balanced. Dalstrong's stunning 'tsunami-rose' genuine Damascus layers.
Dalstrong has been one of the most revolutionary brands in knives making. This 6-inch Nakiri knife from Dalstrong has been one of the most popular knives in its segment due to its exceptional performance and attractive design. The blade has been designed using the AUS-10V steel at 62+ Rockwell hardness and is protected by 66 layers of high carbon stainless steel, which increases the durability and strength of the blade. Due to this, the blade does not lose its sharpness very quickly and stays sharp for a long time.
The knife has been made with a combination of the latest technological equipment and handcrafts of the artisans. The knife has been polished using the traditional 3 steps Japanese Honbazuke process with a 10-degree cutting edge angle. It makes the knife one of the sharpest in its category. The handle has been made with G-10 Garolite, which is military-grade and built to last a long time. The comfort and maneuverability through this handle are great and would not put pressure on the hand even after hours of usage.
- Beautiful hammered tsuchime finish
- Strong and durable construction
- Mirror finished using honbazuke method
- Very heavy
Things to Consider Before Buying a Nakiri Knife
We have discussed and explained the features of 10 different nakiri knives, which would actually make you think about which one should be better for your use and which one should you buy. There are a few things that one needs to consider before buying the perfect nakiri knife for themselves. Mentioned below are some points that you should check and consider before selecting the perfect nakiri knife for yourself.
Most of the best quality nakiri blades are made from Japanese stainless steel. Not just any Japanese steel, but the one with higher carbon content. The stainless steel with higher carbon content makes the steel much stronger and harder, which increases the life of the blade from any damage or breakage. Therefore, make sure that you buy a Nakiri knife made of high carbon Japanese steel for the best quality.
Length of the Blade
The optimum length of a Nakiri blade should be 7 inches. Since these blades are known for their long length and straight blade edge, they provide a precision cutting motion due to its dimensions. However, it also depends on personal usage and handling style. If you are not comfortable with a 7-inch blade, you can always go for a Nakiri knife that has a 5.5 or 6-inch blade, which is also extremely popular among users.
The handling quality that you get in a Nakiri knife would depend from brand to brand. It would ultimately be decided on which kind of handle you are most comfortable with. Most of the Nakiri knives would have a handle made of pakkawood or other types of wooden handles. However, some of the brands also provide a resin-based plastic-looking handle. Some of the best nakiri knives would have a wooden handle like pakkawood, which are much more comfortable to grip and easy to handle. Such a handle should be your primary choice if you are looking for a better grip.
Finishing quality of the blade
Japanese Nakiri knife is hand-honed and the blade contains around 60-65 layers or Damascus layering, which gives it a beautiful Damascus rose finish. It not only makes it look much more attractive but also makes it more durable. Also, these knives come with a satin precision finish, which makes them rust and corrosion-free.
Cutting Edge Angle
This will also depend on the brand of nakiri knife that you are willing to purchase. You will commonly find a cutting edge angle of 16 degrees more or less, which makes the knife perfect for precision cutting. It would also depend on the angle of the knife with which you hold the knife. However, a cutting edge of 16 degrees will definitely give you better usage and functionality.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Makes a Good Nakiri Knife?
A: A good nakiri knife is known by its straight blade edge and squared-off tips that allow you to cut all the way through to the cutting board without having to use a horizontal push or pull. Thin and light in weight, the Nakiri knife is ideal for prepping all types of vegetables. Also, these knives are made out of high carbon Japanese steel, along with a premium wooden handle. If you find all these features in a nakiri knife, then you should definitely buy it.
How should I go about cleaning my Nakiri knife?
A: It would be best if you can hand clean these knives to increase the life of the blade. You can use warm water and a soft cloth to clean the blade. Since these are stain-resistant, they would be easy to clean. Also, after washing them, you need to dry them immediately both on the blade and handle to avoid any possibilities of rust.
What size nakiri knife is best?
A: Home and professional chefs mostly use a 5-inch nakiri for more precision cutting and finer cuts, while the 7-inch blade is used for general purpose. I would suggest you get a 7-inch blade, and if you already have one, do get a 5-inch blade for finer cutting.
Nakiri knives have gained a lot of popularity among both professional and home chefs. This is due to their increased usage and premium build quality. The list of best nakiri knives reviewed above are very popular among customers and would be a perfect choice if you are looking to buy one. The best nakiri knife among all the brands would ultimately depend on the type of knife and grip you want from it. Every knife in this review has been selected to fit your budget and requirement. So if it’s the time to change your knife or buy a new one, then you should get one of these now.