For cooking enthusiasts and chefs, having the best kitchen tools is vital. Having a quality knife can or break your cooking experience.
However, you don't have to break the bank to find the best knives with the sharpest blades. So how do you find the best knife set under $100? A couple of features to consider include material quality, blade sharpness and the types of knives included.
Ideally, you want a knife set that comes with quality knives and has the sharpest blades.
We reviewed the best knife sets under $100 and outlined features to consider when buying them.
What Is A Knife Set?
Ideally, you only require two knives in the kitchen: a chef's knife and a serrated bread knife.
The chef's knife cuts just about anything except for crusty bread. The bread knife cut's through bread and softer food items like a tomato.
A knife set usually includes the essential knives and will also feature bonus ones like a carving knife, steak knives and paring knives. In addition, some sets come with knife sharpeners and storage blocks.
We reviewed the best knife sets under $100 with the sharpest blades made of the best quality.
Which is the best knife set under $100?
Best Knife Sets Under 100
1. Emojoy Knife Set
- ALL-IN-ONE COMPLETE SET – Professional Knives set red solid...
- PROFESSIONAL QUALITY – Copper knife set anti rust made from...
- A MULTI-PURPOSE KITCHEN DÉCOR - Ergonomically designed.The ABS...
- EASY CARE – Please Hand Clean And Don't Use Dish Washer to...
- Quick Action – We are committed to improving your cooking...
The Emojoy Knife set is designed from high-carbon German steel. The 15 piece knife set includes a chef knife, bread knife, carving knife, sharpener, santoku knife, scissors, utility knife, paring knife, six steak knives, and a knife block.
The steak knife has a fully serrated blade designed to increase cutting efficiency and a curved handle to adapt to your hand while cutting.
The handles have been ergonomically designed to minimize finger cramps and aches, especially during prolonged usage.
It's the best knife set under $100 if searching for ultimate precision and control.
2. McCook MC29 Knife Sets
- HIGH QUALITY Kitchen Knife Set - Tarnish-resistant and...
- WORLD CLASS KNIFE SET - Exclusive taper grind edge technology...
- EASY TO STORAGE - All knives store safely in the hard wood knife...
- VALUE SET - 15 pieces knife set includes: 8" chef knife, 8"...
- EASY CARE - The kitchen knife set with block is easy and fast to...
The McCook knife set features blades made of high-carbon stainless steel.
The 15 piece set includes an 8" chef knife, 8" slicing knife, 5" santoku knife, 5.5" serrated utility knife, 5" utility knife, 3.5" paring knife, six 4.5" steak knife, two pairs of kitchen shears, and hardwood knife block with a built-in sharpening tool.
It comes with all the essential knives. You can also use the serrated knife as a bread knife.
3. Cuisinart C77TR-15P Triple Rivet Collection
- Superior high-carbon stainless steel blades for precision and...
- Precision-tapered ground blades that narrow gradually to an...
- Forged durable extra-wide safety bolster for perfect stability...
- Stainless steel rivets to secure the full-tang blade to the...
This is the best knife set under $100 if looking for an outstanding balance at an affordable budget.
The 15- piece set is well suited for various chopping tasks and is equipped with comfortable and well-shaped handles.
The knives feature high-carbon stainless steel blades and stainless steel rivets that secure the full-tang blade to the handle.
The knife set includes six knives ( an 8-inch chef's knife, a 5-inch Santoku knife, a 3.5-inch paring knife, an 8-inch serrated bread knife, a 4.5-inch utility knife, and an 8-inch slicing knife) along with a honing steel, kitchen shears, six steak knives, and a large, wooden block.
4. KitchenAid KKFSS14BO 14 Piece Set
- Included Components: 14-Piece Brushed Stainless Steel Cutlery Set
The KitchenAid 14 piece knife set is designed for optimal performance. You can chop various ingredients with the best selection of knives from this set.
It features a well balanced that chop ingredients with ease. The knife set comes with a bamboo wooden block. In addition, it features an integrated sharpening tool that makes it easier and convenient for sharpening knives.
The knives are created from German stainless steel, giving them an exceptional and enduring razor-sharp edge. In addition, the handle and blade are forged together, forming one piece for long life durability, comfort and hand control.
The set includes 2 Chef Knives, a slicing knife, sharpening steel, a serrated utility knife, a paring knife, a santoku knife, six steak knives and a bamboo stand.
5.KYOKU 5-Knife Set with Block
- SUPERIOR STEEL - Manufactured with ultra-sharp, cobalt-added, and...
- ERGONOMIC & WELL-BALANCED - Ergonomically designed, the narrow...
- DURABLE HANDLE - The meticulously constructed, triple-riveted...
- EXTREME SHARPNESS - The ruthlessly sharp edges are handcrafted by...
- LIFETIME WARRANTY - Our knives come with a lifetime warranty, and...
Japanese knives are synonymous with their ultrathin, lightweight blades. Though this Kyoku knife set may not have been forged in Japan, it still measures up.
The knives are ergonomically designed with narrow blades that help alleviate fatigue and finger pains from long periods of slicing or chopping, perfectly blending performance and comfort.
The five-piece knife set includes an 8-inch chef knife, 8-inch bread knife, six and a half-inch boning knife, 5-inch utility knife and three and a half pairing knife.
Features To Consider When Buying Best Knife Set Under $100
a) Blade Material
Kitchen knife blades come in a range of stainless steel, ceramic, and high-carbon steel. Each material has various advantages and downsides:
i) Stainless Steel
Stainless steel tends to be the most popular. Knives made from the material are easier to sharpen and don't rust easily. They are durable and last longer. However, stainless steel knives are not completely stain-proof. They must have at least 10 percent chromium which aids the blade in resisting decay, wear and corrosion. The downside of these knives is that their edges dull quicker than other metals; hence they have to be sharpened frequently.
ii) Carbon Steel
Carbon steel knives are designed to stay sharp for a long time. However, they are prone to rust. Thus can be prevented by seasoning it with mineral oil. The knives require more care and maintenance. They are, however the knives for cooking enthusiasts.
There's also the category of knives made of high carbon stainless steel. This is a higher grade of stainless steel featuring high carbon content.
The knives have better edge retention, cutting ability and strength. As a result, most home chefs select the best knife sets with high carbon stainless steel.
The knives are very sharp, lightweight and not expensive. They don't rust and rarely need sharpening but can chip easily and are difficult to maintain at home. Ceramic is very hard and requires a diamond sharpener. The knives need to be sent back to the supplier to be sharpened, which can be inconvenient.
A ceramic knife set is ideal if you don't cut meat regularly.
b) Type of Edge
When searching for the best sets under 100, you're likely to come across various knife edges. They can be straight or serrated. Single or double-edged and vary in sharpened. It's vital to know the differences as this will aid in choosing what suits you.
Most knife sets have straight edge blades. These can include santoku knives, chef's knives, utility knives, paring knives, boning knives, and cleavers. A straight edge allows you to use downward force when chopping and peeling.
Serrated blades are found on smaller steak knives, bread knives and tomato knives. Some chef knives also have small serrations to help cut through the meat. A serrated blade edge is perfect for cutting through bread loves, rigid shells, soft fruits and sinewy meat because the saw-like motion doesn't tear apart the foot. Instead, it slices through multiple thin layers at a slower pace.
Kitchen knife blades tend to have a single edge. As a result, the knives have one sharpened edge with a consistent grind and sharpen throughout the blade's length.
Double edge blades have two sharpened edges. The advantage of a double edge knife is its multipurpose use. For instance, one sharpened edge can have a fine grind that easily cuts through fruits and vegetables, and the other sharpened edge may feature a coarse grind for chopping.
The knife's sharpness is an indicator of how effective it is at slicing food. It also aids in determining its safety. Using a dull blade can cause serious injury. If using a dull knife, you'll need to use more strength to cut through food. Ceramic knives remain sharp or more extended periods but are not suitable for cutting meat and frozen food.
Some knives are more versatile than others. When searching for the best knife set under $100, invest in multipurpose rather than specialized knives.
The chef's knife set is the most versatile. You can use them for various meal preparation tasks. For example, some models include serrated blades for slicing through soft fruits and meat.
Santoku knives are a close second, and they can be used for most tasks. However, they are more effective for chopping than chef knives.
Pairing knives are famous for making minor, precise cuts for different meal prep techniques.
Bread knives feature a serrated edge that slices through bread, vegetables and soft fruits.
Utility knives are similar to pairing knives, but the blade is longer. Hence making them ideal for those with larger hands who struggle with a pairing knife.
Boning knives are specialized knives that remove meat from the bone. They are not as versatile as chef or utility knives. But they can be used on various meats, including lamb, need, fish, chicken and pork.
Lastly, cleavers chop large food products such as melon or meat into smaller pieces. However, they're not very versatile.
It's essential to pay attention to the knife's handle when searching for the best knife sets under $ 100. An uncomfortable handle can make the best blade feel worthless. Therefore, it's essential to avoid a knife set with handles made of low quality. Likewise, avoid handles made of cheap plastic, which become brittle over time.
You'll want to look for handles with stainless steel, a laminated wood composite or an engineered and wood composite. With natural moisture and temperature resistance, the handles are easier to maintain.
The handle's shape is something else to consider. Search for an ergonomic knife set that sits comfortably in hand, so you don't have to worry about losing its grip.
e) Type of Knives Included
Firstly, the best knife sets under $100 should include the three core knives: a chef's knife/ a Santoku knife, a paring knife, and a serrated knife. The knife set should also include honing steel for sharpening your edges, and a pair of kitchen shears always come in handy.
It's great if the knife set includes a utility knife- you may find this smaller knife handy for slicing cheese or small vegetables. Bonus items might be boning knives, carving or slicing knives, smaller serrated knives, tourne knives (often called peelers), or steak knives.
f) Knife Block
You're likely to come across some knife sets that come with a wooden knife block. This lets you conveniently store your knives and keep them in an accessible place. The wood storage block is not guaranteed but keep in mind if the best knife set under $100 you are eyeing includes one or not. This can be a deal-breaker for some.
g) Dishwasher Safe
As you search for your ideal knife set, you're likely to notice that some claim to be 'dishwasher safe.' However, keep in mind that there's always a degree of risk when using a dishwasher, depending on the sensitivity of the material. There's also a slight chance of damage to the blade or handles if you choose to do so. This is because some materials don't react too well to the high-temperature waters of dishwashers that soak the items for hours, sometimes leading to bending and rusting of metals or damage to woods.
Hence it's advisable to read other reviewers to know if the item is dishwasher friendly. You also have the choice to hand wash your knives, whether dishwasher friendly or not.
h) Tang Blade
The tang refers to the unsharpened, unexposed part of the blade that extends down the handle. There are three main tang types:
1. Full tang
The blade is one solid piece of metal that runs down to the entire length of the handle. For some knives, the tang is visible and fastened by rivets. A full tang knife is always ideal, as it usually has better balance and a more robust design. It also means there's no danger of the handle coming loose from the knife blade.
2. Rat-tail tang
The knife blade narrows as it goes through the handle and is commonly welded at its base. As a result, knives with a rat-tail tang can come loose over time, making the handle wobbly.
3. Half tang
The knife blade extends halfway along with the handle. One has to be careful not to apply too much force as it can break the knife. Since it's just glue binding the knife and handles.