Good quality kitchen knives are a cook’s best friend, whether you’re the head chef of a Michelin-starred restaurant or an ambitious home foodie.
They help you to improve your skills, get the most out of your ingredients, unlock the best flavours in your dishes and achieve exquisitely presented food.
But, with so many options out there to choose from and a typically high price tag attached to some of the best knives, it can be difficult to know where to start when building up your tools.
Here, we’ve created a quick guide to your essential kitchen knife rack so you can know your paring knife from your chef’s knife!
Otherwise known as a cook’s knife, this is the most versatile knife in your toolkit and will be the one you use most often, completing a range of tasks such as preparing meat and chopping herbs and vegetables.
They vary in size and weight but, due to you using it for almost every meal, it’s worth taking the time to find one that sits comfortably in your hand. We’d also recommend spending a bit more money on this knife as it’s well worth the investment!
This post by BBC Good Food has details of some of the best-rated chef’s knives on offer.
This knife is much smaller and has a thinner blade compared to your chef’s knife and is used for more delicate tasks.
Also known as a vegetable knife, you’ll use this is most instances where you’re cutting in your hand rather than on a board, such as coring and peeling fruit, de-seeding chillies and segmenting citrus.
You’ll likely have heard of this knife before and it essentially does what it says on the tin: slicing loaves of bread, as the serrated edge allows you to slice through the airy dough without crushing it to smithereens!
However, aside from bread, you can also use it to slice tomatoes, peaches and nectarines, as well as cutting cakes in half and roughly chopping chocolate.
For tips on how to choose the right bread knife, check out this post by Lifehacker.
Boning Knife/ Filleting Knife:
These knives are used for deboning and skinning meat and fish, with both knives having a long, sharp, thin blade.
These knives are fairly interchangeable for those just starting out with cooking and it probably isn’t worth investing in both until you’re more confident with your skills.
For more information on the difference between a boning knife and filleting knife, check out Metro Kitchen’s blog post.
This is definitely an essential knife for the meat lovers amongst us and, whilst you might not use it as often as some of the others on this list, it will definitely come in handy for those Sunday roasts!
Used for carving meat on or off the bone, this knife has a long, sharp blade that should slice down the meat easily and smoothly.
This is often seen as the Japanese version of our Chef’s knife, according to Kitchen Knives, and can be used interchangeably for the same sort of tasks.
You can use it for chopping veg, slicing fruits, and prepping meat, with the unique fluted blade allowing food to easily slip off the knife.
So, we hope this has helped you to get to grips with the different knives on offer and start building up your kitchen tools!