Choosing the right knife for your kitchen can be a daunting task. With so many different styles and types of knives available, it can be hard to know which is best for you. One type of knife that is often overlooked but has some unique advantages is the nakiri knife. The nakiri knife has a straight edge and rectangular blade shape that makes it ideal for chopping vegetables, slicing fish, or cutting meat into thin slices.

But with so many different models to choose from, how do you know which one is right for you? In this article, we will explore all aspects of the nakiri knife – its features, benefits, and drawbacks – in order to help you make an informed decision when choosing a nakiri knife for your kitchen needs.

How To Choose A Nakiri Knife?

When it comes to choosing the best nakiri knife, there are a few key factors you should keep in mind.

Blade Length

The first factor to consider when choosing a nakiri knife is the blade length. A longer blade allows for larger slices and bigger cuts, while a shorter blade gives you more control over your cutting. The blade should typically be between six and eight inches long, so think about what size of the job you’ll be doing most often before selecting one.

For example, if you’re mostly slicing vegetables, a shorter blade might be ideal like any Japanese vegetable knife contains. If you plan to do more heavy-duty tasks like cutting through bone and thicker items, then a longer blade is probably best.

It’s also important to note that some nakiri knives can come with a single-beveled edge, which is designed to be used only by right-handed people. If you’re left-handed, make sure you get a double-beveled edge so it’s usable for both hands.


The weight of a nakiri knife is also an important factor to consider when choosing one. A heavier blade of such a Japanese knife may provide more stability and better edge retention, but it can also be tiring to use for long periods of time. On the other hand, a lighter knife can make for easier maneuvering, but it may not retain its edge as well.

The weight should be well balanced, so it’s not too light or too heavy. Depending on the type of cutting you plan to do; you should determine the best weight for your needs. If you are a home cook and just need a basic nakiri knife, then go for one with an average weight that is comfortable for you to use. However, if you are a professional chef, then you may want to opt for a heavier knife for added stability and better edge retention.


The material of the nakiri knife is also an important factor to consider when making a purchase. A good quality nakiri should be made from high-carbon stainless steel, which offers superior strength and durability. It should also have a full tang, meaning that the blade runs through the handle in one piece. This will ensure optimal balance and control while you’re chopping and slicing.

Some nakiri Japanese knives may also have a bolster, which is an extra layer of metal between the blade and handle designed to provide more weight and balance. If your nakiri chef knife has a bolster, make sure it’s well-fitted so that it won’t come loose over time. Also, check the finish of the knife’s blade material. A good quality finish should resist rust and corrosion and make it easier to keep clean.


Comfort is an important factor to consider when choosing a good nakiri knife. The handle should be ergonomic and provide a comfortable grip that won’t slip in your hand even when wet while working on a cutting board. It should also have a non-slip finish, so you don’t have to worry about accidentally cutting yourself while handling the knife.

Moreover, the size of the handle should be appropriate for your hand size so it feels comfortable to hold without straining your wrist or fingers. The weight and balance of the knife are also important when it comes to comfort – a heavy knife can tire out your arms quickly, and an unbalanced blade may cause you to lose control while cutting. Therefore, it’s important to go for a knife that feels comfortable in your hand when you use it.


Another important factor to consider when selecting a nakiri knife is the price. Because nakiri Japanese kitchen knives are designed for precise, detailed cutting tasks, they can be expensive. Make sure you go with a knife that fits your budget but also one that is high quality. You want to make sure it will last, so it’s worth investing in a good-quality Japanese nakiri knife that won’t need to be replaced often.

Look out for sets that provide multiple stainless steel knives in different sizes; this is often more cost-effective than buying a single knife. Also, some manufacturers offer lifetime warranties on their products, so it’s worth checking what the warranty covers to make sure you get the most value for your money. By taking the time to shop around and research the best prices, you can find the perfect nakiri knife for your needs without breaking the bank.

Japanese Vs. Western-Style Handles

You’ll need to decide whether you want a Japanese-style handle or a Western-style handle. The main difference between the two is that Japanese handles are typically shorter and more slender; they tend to fit better in smaller hands. On the other hand, Western-style handles are longer and thicker, which some people find easier to hold.

Many Japanese-style handles are also made of wood, while Western-style handles are often made of plastic or metal. Whichever style you choose will depend on your personal preference and comfort level when handling the knife. Regardless of the handle style, make sure it is durable and feels comfortable in your hand.

Consider The Manufacturer And Brand Reputation

When choosing a nakiri knife, it is important to consider the manufacturer and their brand reputation. You want to make sure you are buying from a reputable source that is known for producing high-quality knives. Many of the top brands in kitchen cutlery have been around for decades and have earned a good reputation through consistent craftsmanship.

Do your research and read reviews on the brand you are considering. Ask around the culinary community to see what other chefs recommend. Taking these steps will help ensure that you get a durable, well-made nakiri knife that will last for years of use in your kitchen.

In addition to considering brand reputation, it is also important to ensure that the manufacturer has proper quality control measures in place. Make sure that the knives are made from high-quality materials and have undergone rigorous testing before being sold. This will help ensure you get a reliable knife that will perform well in your kitchen.

Furthermore, check for any warranties or guarantees that come with the knife to ensure you can get it repaired or replaced if something goes wrong. Shun Premier nakiri knife, for example, comes with a long-time warranty and free sharpening services.

Left-Handed vs. Right-Handed Nakiri Knives

When selecting a nakiri knife, you should also consider whether you are left-handed or right-handed. Many brands make knives specifically designed for either hand orientation. Consider investing in a knife that is designed for your dominant hand, as this will provide the best comfort and control when cutting.

If you are unsure which type of nakiri knife is best for you, it’s always a good idea to go into a store and handle multiple options. This will help you get an understanding of the LEFT-HANDED and RIGHT-HANDED knives so that you can make an informed decision. You might also want to ask a store associate for assistance in finding the right nakiri razor-sharp knife for you.

Full Tang vs. Partial Tang

The tang is the part of the knife that extends into the handle. Some nakiri knives have a full tang, which means it extends from one end of the handle to the other. This provides extra stability and balance when using the knife. Other knives may only have a partial tang, which doesn’t extend all the way through the handle. Full tang knives tend to be sturdier and more balanced, so they’re often a better choice for those who plan on using their knife regularly.

However, partial tang nakiri knives are sometimes preferred due to their lighter weight and lower price point. They can still be effective for slicing and chopping, although they may not provide the same level of stability as a full tang knife. Ultimately, it comes down to personal preference — choose whichever type of tang feels most comfortable in your hand.

Single-Beveled vs. Double-Beveled

Nakiri knives can also be single-beveled or double-beveled. Single bevel blades are honed on one side and are designed for precise cutting and slicing. Double bevel blades feature a symmetrical edge, which makes them easier to use for both left-handed and right-handed users.

Although they are more versatile, double-bevel blades require more maintenance as they can easily become dull. Additionally, single bevel blades provide a sharper edge and are preferred by professional chefs.

A person’s specific needs should be taken into account when deciding between these two types of blades. For instance, if you are a beginner looking for an all-purpose knife, then a double-beveled nakiri knife is likely the better choice. On the other hand, experienced chefs may opt for a single bevel blade to achieve more detailed and precise cuts.

Either way, a quality nakiri knife should be both sharp and durable, so be sure to invest in one that meets your needs.

These ten factors should help you choose the perfect nakiri knife for your kitchen. By understanding the features of each type, you can easily find one that will provide years of reliable use. Take your time when selecting a nakiri knife, and consider all your options to ensure you make an informed decision.

What Are Some Of the Alternatives to Nakiri Knives?

There are numerous types of kitchen knives available, and the nakiri knife is just one option. Other popular alternatives include Santoku knives, usuba knives, chef’s knives, and paring knives. Each of these blades has its own unique purpose and is suitable for different tasks in the kitchen. In this section, we’ll take a closer look at these alternatives and compare them to the nakiri knife.

Nakiri knife vs Santoku knife

The Santoku knife is a Japanese kitchen blade that has a wide, flat blade and a pointed tip. It’s usually made with a single bevel edge and features an angled cutting edge for precision slicing. The nakiri knife stands out from the Santoku in terms of size — the nakiri vegetable knife is wider than the Santoku knife and is better suited for chopping vegetables.

The Santoku knife is a great all-purpose kitchen tool, but it doesn’t have the same size or cutting power as the nakiri knife. If you need to prepare large amounts of vegetables quickly, then the nakiri knife is the better option.

Nakiri knife vs Usuba knife

The Nakiri knife has a rectangular blade with edges that are straight and symmetrical, which makes it ideal for slicing vegetables. On the other hand, an Usuba knife is also rectangular but has a single-edged blade for making delicate cuts and precision work.

When choosing between the two knives, consider your purpose or needs. Is your main concern cutting vegetables quickly and easily? Then go with the Nakiri knife. Do you need a knife to do intricate cutting and slicing? Then an Usuba knife is the right choice.

Nakiri knife vs Chef’s cleaver

A chef’s cleaver is a large knife with a broad, flat blade. It’s usually used to chop through hard ingredients like bones and meat, but it can also be used to cut vegetables. The Japanese nakiri knives and the chef’s cleaver are two very different tools — the former is designed for precision slicing, while the latter is ideal for tougher ingredients.

If you need a knife to chop through tough ingredients, then go with the chef’s cleaver. On the other hand, if you want a knife to easily and quickly slice vegetables, then go with the nakiri knife.

These comparisons should help you decide which knife is best suited for your needs. Regardless of the type, always make sure to invest in a quality nakiri or other kitchen knife that will last and provide reliable performance.


Now that you’ve read through the various aspects to consider when selecting a nakiri knife, it’s time to make your decision. If you’re looking for a blade with an especially sharp edge and great slicing power, choose one made of high-carbon steel. Ceramic blades are also incredibly durable and long-lasting.

Whatever material you select, be sure to properly maintain your nakiri knife with regular honing and sharpening. With the proper care, your nakiri knife will become a lasting kitchen companion that can stand up to years of use.


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