Whether you’re a professional chef or an amateur food blogger, paring knives are a staple in any kitchen.
The small, versatile knives are designed for peeling and cutting fresh fruits and vegetables and are used in most households to do all of the precise cutting work.
The paring knife is in the chef knife family, though they are often used to cut meat, fish, and vegetables as well.
The blade of a paring knife is usually about three to four inches long, perfect for trimming produce. A paring knife is lightweight and should have a sharp, straight-edge blade.
When buying a paring knife, consider the sharpness and weight of the blade and the feel of the grip. For peeling and slicing, the knife needs to be easy to hold in one hand.
I’ve found the best paring knives available from reputable knife brands across the globe and ranked them below.
Misen Paring Knife
The Misen paring knife is made by the established Chinese knife brand Misen.
The knife is made from premium AUS-10 Steel, which contains twice as much carbon as other premium knife brands.
The blade has an edge angle of 15 degrees, sharper than the usual 25 degrees.
The Misen paring knife has a sloped bolster, giving the handle a sturdy grip.
The cutter is made to slice and dice fruit and vegetables and is sharp enough to mince herbs and spices as well.
I love the Misen paring knife because of its ability to cut up small root vegetables. I’d say this is one of the most versatile knives in my set because of its effective and ergonomic design.
Misen also makes a great chef knife!
Global 3.5-inch Western Style Paring Knife
The Global 3.5 Western Style paring knife is designed for western cooks using first-rate Japanese cutlery.
The knife has a balanced stainless steel handle and an extremely sharp carbon blade made ideally for peeling.
The knife’s slim handle is only about three times thicker than the blade, intentionally made very thin to ensure stability with the edge.
I like the Global 3.5 Western Style paring knife because of its unique rounded handle.
The knife is dangerously sharp out of the box, and when it’s paired with a Global knife sharpening stone it will stay that way for years.
Shun Premier Paring Knife
Shun is one of the finest Japanese knife brands on the market. The company’s premier 4-inch paring knife is a must-buy for professional chefs or restaurateurs.
The blade is made with 68 micro-layers of Damascus steel, with a hammered finish to prevent food from sticking to it.
Shun’s 4-inch paring knife is wear and corrosion-resistant, with a sharp 16-degree edge on either side.
The handle is made from contoured Pakkawood with a water-resistant walnut finish. The premier 4-inch paring knife is handcrafted in Japan and can easily peel, slice, and dice.
I recommend it for its lasting durability and the included lifetime warranty.
Tojiro DP Paring Knife
The Tojiro DP Paring Knife is made by the Japanese knife atelier Tojiro. The company makes premiere Japanese knives, and the DP paring knife is no different.
The blade is forged using two types of high-carbon stainless steel and is almost 4-inches long.
I like the Tojiro DP Paring Knife because of the double bevel edges, which push the food away from the knife as you slice.
Tojiro’s DP Paring Knife has a curved handle made with fortified laminated material. It weighs less than 3 ounces in hand, ideal for continuous trimming or cutting.
It may be small, but the Tojiro DP paring knife can even cut through root vegetables.
Wusthof Pro 3.5-Inch Paring Knife
The 3.5-inch paring knife from German knife atelier Wusthof is a well-made, premium chef’s cutter.
The blade is slim, not even an inch wide, and made of forged, full-tang stainless steel. I recommend the Wusthof Pro 3.5-inch paring knife for home chefs or bakers, as it’s perfect for segmenting and cutting up small fruits and vegetables.
The cutter’s handle is made from resilient riveted synthetic material and is the exact length of the exposed blade.
With such a sharp, narrow blade and pointed tip, the knife is also able to peel garlic, onions, and other members of the Allium family.
ZWILLING J.A. Henckels Four-Star 4-Inch Paring Knife
Zwilling has been producing home kitchen products since 1731 and has had plenty of time to perfect its 4-inch paring knife.
The blade is sturdy and flexible and is corrosion-resistant thanks to the ice-hardening process the knife undergoes and is made of a formula of high carbon steel.
The knifes edges are laser controlled for ideal cutting angles, and it ranks 57 on the Rockwell Hardness scale.
The Zwilling Four-Star 4-inch paring knife manufactures in Germany, and its blade is forged from a single piece of solid steel.
I appreciate how durable this knife is and the no-stain, no-chip guarantee from Zwilling that comes with it.
Kuhn Rikon 3.5-inch Knife
The Kuhn Rikon 3.5-inch paring knife comes in bright ruby red and other bright colors with a matching handle and is safe, sharp, and strong.
In my opinion, this is one of the best paring knives for the family home or the aspiring home chef. The knife comes with a smooth blade cover to protect it while it’s out of use or put away.
The Kuhn Rikon 3.5-inch knife is forged with carbon steel and has a single beveled, 20-degree blade intended to chop up produce without collecting debris.
The knife is a lightweight two ounces and has been specifically praised for its exceptionally sharp edges.
Mac Knife 4-Inch Paring Knife
All Mac Knives are forged, shaped, and sharpened by professional Japanese bladesmiths.
The knives have a unique look and are stamped with the aesthetic Mac Knife logo during production.
The company’s 4-inch paring knife is small enough for dicing, but the elevated handle means it can be used for chopping larger things as well.
I think the Mac Knife 4-inch paring knife is the ultimate knife for anyone who loves to cook, professionally or otherwise.
The ergonomic design of the knife allows it to serve multiple purposes in the kitchen, and it’s a great addition to anyone’s cutlery toolkit.
Victorinox 3.25-Inch Paring Knife
Switzerland manufactures all Victorinox’s knives.
The Victorinox Swiss Army knife collection has been a staple of home chefs, professionals, and everyday carry enthusiasts for more than a hundred years.
The company’s 3.25-inch Swiss Classic paring knife is a high-quality blade with a sharp spear point made of stainless steel.
Depending on your preference, the Victorinox 3.25-inch paring knife comes with a straight or serrated edge and is available in classic black plus five other colors.
The knife’s design ensures a sure grip even when wet, and I love the short blade for precision cuts.
Zyliss 3.5-Inch Paring Knife with Sheath Cover
Zyliss is a Swiss cookware and cutlery producer and manufacturer trusted by households across the nation and worldwide.
Its paring knife is coupled with a stylish sheath to protect you and your knife while it is out of use. The blade is made of high-carbon stainless steel.
Zyliss’ 3.5-inch paring knife has a soft rubber grip to reduce hand fatigue while chopping or dicing.
The cutter is dishwasher safe, and I recommend it for any traveling chef or everyday carry specialist who needs a durable knife for cooking while camping or hunting.
The knife includes a 5-year satisfaction guarantee, so you can be sure its quality meets your expectations.
What is a Paring Knife?
A paring knife is a small chef’s knife, similar to a utility knife. It’s predominantly used for small, precise cuts, and peeling fruits, potatoes, and other vegetables like onions and garlic.
A paring knife is a staple in any professional or home kitchen and can be used for a host of cutting tasks.
When buying a paring knife, there are a few things to consider. It’s crucial to ensure that the weight and length of the knife will be easy to hold and maneuver.
There are different types of handle material, from finished wood to carbon steel, and you can experiment to see which one works for you.
A paring knife should also be long-lasting and durable. Knives made from strong forged high carbon steel or stainless steel will last longer and be less moldable than plastic knives.
Paring knives usually measure about 2.5 to 4-inches and can have a serrated or straight edge, depending on preference.
Finally, a paring knife should never break the budget. While there are premium paring knives available for over 50 dollars, a good quality paring knife can be bought under for under 20 dollars depending on the manufacturer and the country of origin.