Sushi has become a popular dish around the world. It’s hard to pinpoint what exactly makes it such a tempting dish. Perhaps it’s the beautiful presentation of the dish. Or maybe it’s the interesting texture that each piece of sushi brings to the table. Chances are that it’s a blend of all these factors and more.
Whatever the reason you love sushi, we’re sure that you’ve thought about making it yourself from the comfort of your own kitchen. The great news is that as long as you have the proper equipment at your fingertips, there’s no reason as to why you can’t make your very own sushi.
As long as you have a good quality sushi knife in your possession, you’ll have no issues with making sushi at the restaurant or home.
Do You Really Need A Sushi Knife?
It is of course true that you could try and craft your own sushi simply by using the kitchen knives that you already have at your disposal.
However, sushi is a rather delicate creation. So this will need more precision when it comes to the cuts you will need to make, such as with sashimi. So if you don’t use the proper knives, this will lead to a lot of tearing in your ingredients, and leave you with sloppy sushi.
The great thing about Japanese knives is that they have been crafted with specific tasks in mind. Some knives such as the Yanagiba knife are designed for sashimi slicing.
Other knives such as the Nakirir have been designed to help slice your vegetables. So to create the very best sushi possible, you will need to have the right knife to hand. There are versatile Japanese knives, too, but we’ll cover this in more detail shortly.
The Best Sushi Knives
We’ve made a list of the best sushi knives on the market to help you find the right product for your needs.
- Dalstrong Phantom series: 9.5 inch Yanagiba knife
- Dalstrong Gladiator series: 5 inch Santoku knife
- Zelite Infinity 7 inch Nakiri knife
- FindKing Dynasty series 7 inch Nakiri knife
- TUO 6.5 inch Nakiri knife
- Mercer Culinary 6 inch Deba knife
- PAUDIN 7 inch Nakiri knife
- ALLWIN-HOUSEWARE 7 inch Santoku
- MAD SHARK 8 inch Santoku knife
- KYOKU Samurai series 7 inch Nakiri knife
- KYOKU Samurai series 10.5 inch Yanagiba knife
- Mac 6.5 inch Santoku knife
- Dalstrong Quantum 1 series 8.5 inch Deba knife
- KYOKU 7 inch Nakiri knife
- Nego 8.5 inch Yanagiba knife
The Dalstrong Phantom series: 9.5 inch yanagiba knife gives you the perfect start for creating sashimi from the comfort of your own home.
This particular blade is manufactured using high quality materials, so you can rest assured that it will last you for many years to come. It will give you the sharp, precise cuts you need for quality sushi.
- Sharp – gives you the precise cuts you need for beautiful sashimi
- High quality – manufactured using durable materials for longevity
- Specialized – designed for use with slicing and filleting fish
- Sheath – some customers found the protective sheath wasn’t as functional as other Dalstrong sheaths
The Dalstrong Gladiator series: 5 inch santoku knife is the versatile addition you need in your sushi knife collection.
This knife is sharp, and will be able to chop, dice, and mince any ingredients you need it to. It has been manufactured using only the highest quality materials to ensure that it lasts you for many years to come and delivers the superior performance that you’re after.
- High quality – constructed using high quality materials for added durability
- Sharp – will be able to make short work of your ingredients
- Award winning – features an award winning design
- Heavy – some users found this particular knife to be on the heavier side
The Zelite Infinity 7 inch nakiri knife will give you the sharp blade you need for dicing, slicing, and even julienning your vegetables.
This particular knife has been constructed using high quality German steel that is resistant to rust, corrosion, as well as stains. The blade is sharp, and has been designed to maintain this sharp edge for as long as possible. It also features an ergonomic handle for your comfort.
- Durable – manufactured using high carbon stainless steel for added durability
- Ergonomic – designed to be comfortable to handle for longer periods of time
- Sharp – features a sharp blade with a 15-18 degree bevel for maximum sharpness and edge retention
- Heavy – some customers found the handle on the heavy side
The FindKing Dynasty series 7 inch nakiri knife is a fantastic addition for your home kitchen. This blade will give you the sharpness you need to slice away at your veggies to craft beautiful sushi.
It features a comfortable handle that will be easier for you to use in your home kitchen. It has also been crafted using the best materials for superior quality.
- Sharp blade – gives you the precision you need for beautiful sushi
- Perfectly balanced – makes the blade easier for you to control when chopping
- Ergonomic – features a comfortable handle for longer use
- Hobbyist – better suited to the home cook rather than professional chefs
The TUO 6.5 inch nakiri knife is just the thing you need to craft tasty sushi in your own kitchen. This knife has been designed to help you slice away at vegetables for your favorite dishes.
It has been constructed using German stainless steel, which will be highly durable. This nakiri knife also features an ergonomic handle.
- Specialized design – designed to help you make short work of vegetables for sushi
- Ergonomic – features an ergonomic handle for added comfort
- Durable – constructed using high quality German stainless steel
- Plastic handle – some sushi enthusiasts may prefer a wooden handle
The Mercer Culinary 6 inch deba knife is the perfect choice for those who are shopping on a budget and don’t want to splash out on the more expensive Dalstrong sushi knives. This deba knife will be able to make short work of your fish filleting or meat butchery.
- Budget friendly – one of the more affordable options on our list
- High quality – constructed using high carbon German stainless steel
- Durable – resistant to rust, corrosion, and stains
- Handle – some customers found the unpolished wood uncomfortable to handle for long periods of time
The PAUDIN 7 inch nakiri knife gives you the sharp precision you need for beautiful sushi. This blade comes with a range of great features that will lend itself well to your kitchen. These include a sharp blade, ergonomic handle, and durability.
- Precise – gives you the sharp, precise cuts you need
- Durable – constructed using German stainless steel
- Ergonomic – easier to hold for long periods of time
- Hobbyist – better suited to the home cook rather than the professional kitchen
The ALLWIN-HOUSEWARE 7 inch santoku knife gives you everything you need to craft your favorite sushi dishes. This particular blade is versatile, so can be used for preparing several different types of ingredients.
- 2 sizes – choose between 7 inch and 8 inch blades
- Ergonomic handle – makes it more comfortable to hold for longer
- Durable – constructed using durable Damascus steel
- Sheath – some customers felt the knife sheath was on the smaller side
The MAD SHARK 8 inch santoku knife is the versatile addition that you need in your kitchen. It features a solid German military grade steel construction for added durability, and gives you the precise cuts you need for beautiful sushi.
- Sharp – gives you the precise cuts you need
- Durable – constructed using German military grade steel
- Versatile – can be used for different ingredients
- Heavy – a few customers felt the knife was on the heavier side
You’ll make short work of your veggies with the KYOKU Samurai series 7 inch nakiri knife. This knife comes with a range of great features including an ergonomic handle, sharp blade, and durable construction.
- Ergonomic – more comfortable to use for long periods of time
- Sharp – gives you the precise cuts you need
- Durable – manufactured using high quality steel
- Smaller handle – best suited for those with smaller hands
The KYOKU Samurai series 10.5 inch yanagiba knife gives you the well balanced blade you need to fillet fish and other meat. You’ll get the ruthlessly sharp edge you need to make clean, precise cuts.
- Sharp – gives you the precision you need for beautiful sushi
- Specialized blade – designed for use with filleting fish
- Wooden handle – for an authentic sushi knife design
- Long – beginners may find the blade on the long side
The Mac 6.5 inch santoku knife is the versatile addition that you need for crafting sushi. This blade can be used to slice and dice several different types of ingredients. It is sharp, and manufactured using high quality materials.
- Versatile – can be used to cut different types of ingredients
- Sharp – gives you the precise cuts you need
- Authentic – features a wooden handle
- Cleaning – make sure you thoroughly dry the blade after washing to prevent rust
The Dalstrong Quantum 1 series 8.5 inch deba knife gives you the quality blade you need for creating your favorite dishes. This blade gives you the precise cuts you need for slicing away at your fish. It features a durable construction that will last you for many years to come.
- Sharp – gives you the precision you need for sushi
- High quality – constructed using the finest quality materials
- Durable – designed to last you for many years to come
- Expensive – one of the pricier options on the market
The KYOKU 7 inch nakiri knife will give you everything you need to slice and dice away at your veggie ingredients. This particular knife comes with a range of great features to help you make beautiful sushi from the comfort of your own home.
- Ergonomic – makes the handle more comfortable to use
- Durable – constructed to last you for years to come
- Sharp – gives you the precise cuts you need
- Pricey – one of the more expensive options available
The Nego 8.5 inch yanagiba knife gives you the precise sharpness you need to beautifully filleting and preparing your fish and meat. It also features an ergonomic handle, as well as a high quality construction.
- Durable – constructed using high quality materials
- Sharp – gives you the precision you need for sharp cuts
- Specialized blade – designed for use with fish
- Sharpening – some customers recommended sharpening the knife
What Are the Benefits of a Good Sushi Knife?
Why Is It Important to Select A Good Quality Sushi Knife?
As tempting as it might be to opt for a cheaper alternative, it will always be worth opting for a slightly more expensive model. This is a general rule you should follow for all types of kitchen knives, not just for sushi knives.
This is because cheaper knives break more easily, and will need to be replaced quicker than a good quality knife will, and you will often find yourself paying double the price you intended.
Cheaper sushi knives also won’t be as sharp as you need them to be. When it comes to preparing sashimi, you need a sharp knife that can give you the precision you need.
Cheaper knives will leave you with messier cuts that won’t be appealing at all. This will then stress you out more when you’re not getting the precise cuts that you’re after.
So in order to make the process smoother, you will need to opt for the right knives for the sushi you want to make. Not only will it make the process much calmer, but it will also leave you with beautiful results at the end of the cooking process.
What Are the Benefits of a Good Sushi Knife?
- These knives have been specially designed to slice your fish and vegetables for the best results possible
- They work to give you the right distribution and ratio of your ingredients so that your sushi preserves its structural integrity
- Good quality sushi knives constructed using high carbon stainless steel are highly durable and feature superior sharp blades
- The knives have been designed to be as ergonomic as possible so can be used for longer
- A selection of sushi knives in different blade styles, sizes, and weights will be more versatile for your needs
What Happens if you Choose a Bad Sushi Knife?
- Choosing a blunt, cheaper knife will result in a lack of precision. You will have choppier slices, leaving you with inferior sushi
- Cheaper, blunter blades will leave you with unattractive sushi that looks poor quality
- Cheaper blades won’t be able to maintain a sharp edge for long
- The handles often feel more uncomfortable to use and can break easily
- If you buy cheap, you often have to buy twice. The knife won’t last as long, and will need to be replaced when it breaks
Styles of sushi knife
When it comes to choosing the best sushi knife, it’s important to note that there are several different types of Japanese knives to choose from. There are specific styles for specific purposes. We’re going to take a closer look at each of these styles to help you choose the best sushi knife for your needs.
These are the more traditional style of sushi knife featuring a single bevel. They tend to feature a thicker spine and can appear to be hefty in size. This thicker spine helps the knife to slice away at poultry or fish, which comes in handy when filleting or butchering your meat. The deba knife is available in many different sizes, which are suited for different cuts of meat.
This is a Japanese knife that can be characterized by its angled tip. This is one of the more versatile knives that can be used for a variety of purposes. It tends to be more commonly used as a sashimi knife.
The single bevel edge of the kiritsuke knife is considered to be a status and expertise symbol because only the head chefs are allowed to use them in traditional Japanese restaurants.
This is a western style version of the traditional single edge Japanese usuba knife, only it features a double edge. The nakiri knife features a straight blade which helps you to deliver the precise cuts you need when it comes to slicing vegetables.
So you’ll be able to effortlessly brunoise, julienne, and allumette away to your heart’s content. The nakiri knife can also help you to make short work of harder skinned vegetables such as squash and pumpkin.
The English translation of santoku means “three virtues”. This knife is named in reference to its ability to slice meat, fish, and vegetables.
These are considered to be more of a multi purpose knife, and they feature a flatter body which is often more comfortable to use with an up and down slicing movement.
This is a knife that tends to be used for filleting smaller to medium sized fish, slicing through boneless fish fillets to create sashimi, and for skinning fish.
This is because the yanagiba knife features a narrow, sharp blade which can effortlessly cut through the fish.
How to choose a good sushi knife
So now that we know it’s important to choose a good quality knife, how can you choose the best sushi knife for your needs? It will be important to think about what type of sushi you want to create from the comfort of your own kitchen.
Take a look at the different types of sushi knives above to help you decide which will be best for you.
We’re going to talk about the essential factors you will need to consider when it comes to choosing a good quality sushi knife.
Perhaps the most important part of your sushi knife is the blade of the knife itself. So it will be crucial to ensure that you select the best quality blade that is available to purchase.
You will need to make sure that only high quality materials have been used to construct the knife to make sure that it will be capable of withstanding the rigors of your kitchen.
Because precision is important when it comes to crafting sushi, you will need a sharp, durable blade that will be capable of making precise cuts. If you opt for a cheaper knife that has been made using inferior materials, it won’t be capable of giving you the sharp, precise cuts you need.
It will be best to opt for a sushi knife that has been crafted using high carbon stainless steel.
This is a durable material that will be corrosion resistant, stain resistant, and will be capable of maintaining a sharp knife edge. It will still be necessary to properly clean the knife after each and every use, too, of course.
Length of the blade
This will be where things get a little trickier. Depending on the type of sushi you want to make, you will need knives of different lengths.
Different types of knives also come in lots of different lengths. For example, yanagiba knives are usually much longer than other sushi knives, featuring a length of between 9 inches to 10.5 inches. Other sushi knives such as nakiri or santoku tend to be between 6 inches and 7 inches in length.
The key to finding the best sushi knife for your needs is to think about what style of sushi you want to eat, and choose the appropriate length for the task.
High quality materials and ergonomic handle
We’ve already discussed why it’s a bad idea to opt for cheaper knives. It’s always worth paying that little bit extra for a better quality knife that will last you for many years to come. But how can you choose a good quality knife that will be able to last you for longer?
The key will be in choosing a knife that uses high quality materials. The vast majority of Japanese sushi knives use a wooden handle. It will also be important to ensure that these handles are comfortable to grip for long periods of time, so you should opt for an ergonomic design.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which is the best multi purpose sushi knife?
Out of all the knives that we’ve discussed above, the best multi purpose sushi knife is the kiritsuke.
This is because it can be used for multiple cutting purposes, however, this can often mean it’s more tricky to wield. In fact, in some professional Japanese kitchens, only the head chef is permitted to use this style of knife.
If you want a versatile knife that will be easier to use, we’d recommend opting for a santoku knife. This will be much easier for novices to use, and won’t be too tricky to utilize.
How many sushi knives should I own?
It’s important to remember that all sushi knives have been crafted with specific purposes in mind. So the vast majority of sushi chefs will have multiple knives so that they can create the perfect sushi.
However, as a hobbyist, you may not want to invest in buying every version of sushi knife that we have highlighted in more detail above.
To get the very best out of making sushi at home, you will need to choose three styles of knife: deba, nakiri, and yanagiba. The deba will help you to accurately fillet and butcher your fish and meat.
The nakiri will be ideal for slicing and dicing your vegetables. And the yanagiba knife will give you those precise cuts you need for crafting sashimi.
Which is the best budget sushi knife?
There are so many different sushi knives to choose from, it can often be difficult to select the single best knife among them. However, if we were pressed to make a decision, we would opt for Dalstrong Gladiator series: 5 inch Santoku knife. This will give you the best knife for shopping on a budget.
Which sushi knife is best for left handed people?
Unfortunately, most sushi knives on the market aren’t interchangeable between left and right hand use. This is something to be aware of if you are left hand dominant. However, there are plenty of left handed knives available on the market for you to use.
How to sharpen a sushi knife?
It will be important to ensure that your knives are sharp before you use them. This will not only ensure that they are capable of completing the job to a high standard, it will also be necessary for basic kitchen safety.
You should always use a honing rod or a whetstone to help you sharpen your knives. Make sure to sharpen the knives at the correct bevel angle so that the blades can maintain a sharper edge for longer.
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