What is the Best Nakiri Knife?
We have picked the Dalstrong Phantom Series 6” Nakiri Vegetable Knife as the best Nakiri knife as it is made with nitrogen-cooled high-carbon Japanese steel, both lightweight and well-balanced, has a full tang as well as a narrow yet very sharp edge, and comes with a lifetime warranty. It is also highly recommended by professional chefs.
When choosing knives for your kitchen chores, it can be difficult to choose the right knife for each one.
Though knives with multiple purposes can be very convenient, having the correct knife for each chore can cut your chore time tremendously.
In the case of vegetable, a Nakiri knife is the best option, and there are many models to choose from.
Knowing what features and benefits make the Nakiri knife can help prevent overwhelm when you are staring at those dozens of models.
We have put together the following guide to assist you in making the right choice for the top Nakiri knife for you.
Top 7 Best Nakiri Knife: Our Picks & Recommendations
- Best Overall: Dalstrong Phantom Series 6” Nakiri Vegetable Knife
- Best Budget: Mercer Culinary Genesis Forged 7” Nakiri Vegetable Knife
- Best Small 5 Inch: Shun Classic 5-inch Hollow Edge Nakiri Knife
- Best Small 5.5 Inch: Shun TDM0742 5.5-Inch Premier Nakiri Kitchen Knife
- Best Large 6.5-Inch: Yoshihiro 6.5-Inch Stainless Steel Nakiri Vegetable Knife
- Best Large 7-inch: Wusthof Classic 7-inch Nakiri Knife
- Best Professional: Dalstrong Nakiri 6-inch Vegetable Knife- Shogun Series X
What are the Benefits of Using Nakiri Knives?
You may wonder why you should invest in a Nakiri knife when you have a perfectly good knife at home for chopping vegetables. The truth is that once you experience a Nakiri knife, you will wonder how you ever did without it.
Each chopping, slicing, and dicing task is more efficiently completed with a knife specifically designed for the object being cut. For vegetables, this is a Nakiri knife, but what makes it the best choice for vegetables?
Unlike other knives, a Nakiri knife is shaped much more like a cleaver. Where regular knives have a curved and pointed blade, a Nakiri knife’s blade is flat on both the edge of the blade and the end of the blade.
This means that unlike curved blades where you normally have to use a rocking or sawing motion to cut your item, the Nakiri blade simply chops straight through all the way to the cutting board- with no rocking or pushing and pulling needed.
Additionally, most Nakiri knives have a hammered blade. If you have ever cut vegetables, you know that they like to stick to your knife.
The hammered Nakiri blades provide little air pockets between the vegetable and the food that result in the much quicker and easier release of the chopped veggies. These two features make the Nakiri knife the best choice for vegetables.
How to Choose the Best Nakiri Knife for You
Whether you are a home chef or a professional one, choosing knives for your kitchen task is an important task.
You can, of course, just walk into your nearest retail store and purchase the prettiest set you find, but how wise is that method?
If you are looking to up your vegetable chopping game and improve your prep skills, choosing a good Nakiri knife is a great move to make.
Following are some things you should consider when shopping for the top Nakiri knife:
Nakiri Knife VS Usuba Knife VS Santoku Knife-What’s the Difference?
Three well-known kitchen knives are the Nakiri, Usuba, and Santoku, and you may find all three or just one in a kitchen.
So what is the difference in the three knives and how do you know which to choose for your kitchen? Let’s start with comparing the Nakiri and the Usuba.
In many ways, these knives are similar, especially in the tasks that each can complete. However, the Nakiri has lighter materials and a thinner blade.
All of this results in a more lightweight knife, even if it is the same length as the Usuba.
The Nakiri’s materials are more durable and the knife is easier to sharpen. Lastly, Nakiris are usually double-edged where Usuba knives are generally single edged.
The Santoku knife is more of an all-purpose knife. It has the curved and pointed blades that are most common in kitchen knives.
While this provides for versatility, they have to be used in a rocking or back and forth motion. Unfortunately, this can create uneven pieces and may not be ideal for soft vegetables.
The Nakiri, on the other hand, has the flat edge- as mentioned before- that provides for fast, fluid chopping. This results in the clean and even slicing of vegetables.
All three knife types have their own purposes and every kitchen can benefit from having all of them.
If you are a huge veggie lover and love to chop your own for meals and snacks, the Nakiri knife can make a tremendous difference.
Nakiri knives are usually made from stainless steel, but there are two different types of stainless steel to choose from: high carbon and low carbon.
High carbon stainless steel is tougher, has much longer blade retention, and is easy to sharpen.
Low carbon stainless is softer, dull quickly, and are tougher to sharpen. For durability, longevity, and ease, Nakiri knives made from high carbon stainless steel are the best choice.
It is no secret that knives are dangerous and that they must be used correctly to gain the desired result.
The best way to work with these two factors is by choosing a Nakiri knife with an ergonomic handle.
When the handle fits naturally and comfortably in the hand, it is easier to grip, pinch, and use efficiently.
It is also important to find one with enough knuckle clearance for your hand to prevent accidents, injuries, and discomfort.
Finishing Quality of the Blade
The consistency of the vegetables often causes vegetables to stick to knives. Most Nakiri knives have solved this problem by utilizing a hammered finish. This blade finish creates tiny air pockets between the blade and the food causing the food to slip off more easily.
You can expect to spend anywhere from $30 to over $200 on a Nakiri knife. While it is always tempting to purchase the lower cost ones, you must remember that you get the quality you pay for.
Choose the best quality Nakiri knife that your budget can afford you, and know that the benefits are well worth the cost.
7 Best Nakiri Knife Reviews
To find the top Nakiri knife, we searched through the ratings and reviews of dozens of models. Our research led us to the following seven Nakiri knives, which we consider the best based on their materials, handles, finishes, durability.
What You Will Love: It is both lightweight and well balanced.
The Dalstrong Phantom Series 6″ Nakiri Vegetable Knife is loved and used by both home cooks and professional chefs.
The beautifully designed black pakkawood handle is ergonomically shaped to fit well in most people’s hand. The extremely sharp liquid nitrogen cooled blade is made from high-carbon AUS-8 Japanese steel.
It is attached to the handle with a copper and brass pin. It has a 13 degree to 15-degree angle on each side of the blade, and it retains its edge for a great length of time.
The lightweight design makes it easy to wield, though the ergonomic handle does not fit well in some people’s hands.
- Full tang
- High-carbon Japanese steel
- Hand polished
- Ergonomically shaped
- Black Spanish pakkawood handle
- Narrow blade
- Very sharp
- Lifetime warranty
- Comes with sheath
- Used and recommended by professionals
- The handle may be a bit small and uncomfortable for some people
What You Will Love: It is one of the highest performing Nakiri knives in this price range.
The Mercer Culinary Genesis Nakiri Vegetable Knife is beautifully designed and well balanced. Priced at around half of the other options on our list, this Nakiri knife is very budget friendly.
The ergonomic handle is Santoprene, which- among other things- is flame retardant, resistant to harsh chemicals and oils, and maintains its color. It also provides a non-slip grip.
The tang runs the full length of this well-made handle. This corrosion-resistant German steel should be hand washed only.
Also, if you leave it in aluminum or stainless steel sink, the sink’s metal affects the Nakiri knife’s blade.
- Very budget friendly
- Non-slip grip
- Full Tang
- German steel
- NSF certified
- Santoprene handle
- Should be hand washed only
- Should not be soaked
Best Small 5 Inch
What You Will Love: The beautifully designed blade comes sharp straight from the box.
The Shun Classic 5-inch Hollow Edge Nakiri Knife is as impressive as you expect Shun knives to be. The beautifully designed, durable blade is 32 layers of high-carbon rust-resistant, stainless steel.
It has a well-balanced, ergonomically designed, black laminated Pakkawood handle that provides maximum comfort and efficiency.
Though buyers love it, most wish that it were 6” instead of 5”. This Shun Classic Japanese Nakiri knife does come with a lifetime warranty for any defects.
At around $100, it does cost a bit, but users state that it is worth two to three times this amount thanks to its quality.
- 32 layers of high-carbon stainless steel
- Beautifully patterned Damascus steel
- Rust resistant
- Laminated Pakkawood D-shaped handle
- Lifetime warranty
- Very well balanced
- Very sharp straight from the box
- Would be better as 6″
- High price
Best Small 5.5 Inch
What You Will Love: The hand-hammered finish makes this knife a work of art.
The Shun TDM0742 5.5-Inch Premier Nakiri Kitchen Knife is as much a piece of art for your kitchen as it is a piece of cutlery. The thin blade is a layered Damascus steel creation.
The hand-hammered finish creates little air pockets when slicing so food does not stick to the knife when in use. The double beveled 16 degrees per side, and has an ergonomically designed premium Pakkawood handle.
Unfortunately, at nearly $200, it is quite expensive and may not be feasible for all budgets. Additionally, the blade often dulls easily resulting in the need to hone it often.
- A thin and very sharp blade
- Layered Damascus steel with hand hammered finish
- Ergonomic Pakkawood handle
- Double beveled at 16 degrees on each side
- Very expensive
- May dull easily
Best Large 6.5-Inch
What You Will Love: The hammered blade is both beautiful and functional.
The Japanese handcrafted Yoshihiro 6.5-Inch Stainless Steel Nakiri Vegetable Knife is 16 layers of stain resistant steel.
The hammered Damascus steel blade is both aesthetically pleasing and useful as it prevents food from sticking. It has an extremely sharp double edge, which remains sharp for long periods of time.
It has an ergonomically designed western style mahogany handle and a full tang that balances this Nakiri knife. At over $100, it is a costly investment though not as costly as many other options.
Though it is stain resistant, you should hand wash it immediately after use, and never leave it to soak.
- 16 layers of forged steel
- Hammered Damascus tradition
- Double edged
- Hand crafted in Japan
- Western-style mahogany handle
- Full Tang
- Ergonomic handle
- Stain resistant
- Tough and durable
- Well balanced
- Hand wash only
Best Large 7-inch
What You Will Love: It has a Granton edge, which is 30% sharper than most Asian blades, and the sharpness lasts 30% longer.
The Wusthof Classic 7-inch Nakiri Knife is German is high-carbon, stainless steel knife. The full tang improves the balance of this knife.
The texture of the blade provides air pockets when chopping resulting in easy food release. As with other quality knives, you have to hand wash it.
Additionally, it may not come as sharp as you would like straight from the box, meaning that you may need to sharpen it before use.
This is a frustration to some buyers that feel that for the price, it should come sharpened well.
- 30% sharper than Asian blades
- Air pockets for easy food release
- German made
- High-carbon stainless steel
- And full tang
- Hand wash only
- Mid-level pricing
- May not come as sharp as you expect
What You Will Love: This Nakiri knife is not only beautiful but also tough and durable.
The Dalstrong Nakiri 6-inch Vegetable Knife from the Shogun Series X is a thing of beauty and performance.
It has an AUS-10V Japanese super steel core wrapped in 66 layers of premium high-carbon steel for strength and durability. The nitrogen cooling process only increases these features.
The double-edged blade is 8 degrees to 12 degrees per side, and is corrosion resistant. The beautiful hammered finish reduces drag and prevents food from sticking to the blade.
The ergonomically designed military grade G10 handle provides great knuckle clearance. This highly recommended Nakiri knife is a costly investment.
- Includes a sheath
- Tough core and 66 layers of steel
- Nitrogen cooled blade
- Corrosion resistant
- Ergonomic military grade handle
- Hammered finish
- Great knuckle clearance
With so many great options available, it may be difficult to find the top Nakiri knife for you. In this article, we have taken a look at seven of these great options.
When you are ready to make your choice, you might first consider your budget and the length of the knife you want.
These factors should help minimize your choices, allowing you to choose the best option for your preference and your kitchen.
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