Kitchen Knives That Never Need Sharpening

by eslevy17

Tired of constantly sharpening dull kitchen knives? Is there such a thing as a set of kitchen knives that never need sharpening? Perhaps...

A busy kitchen can wear down even the highest quality knives in a short time, leaving them dull, unsafe, and nearly useless. Cheap knives wear out quickly enough, but even expensive knives need some regular maintenance.

But hasn't knife technology improved over the millions of years they have been in existence? Is there no way to create a set of kitchen knives that always stay sharp?

Sort of!

Are there kitchen knives that never need sharpening?

Some kitchen knives stay sharper longer than others

Sadly, there's no such thing as a knife that "always" stays sharp, no matter what happens. Hacking a blade against a granite block is going to do some damage sooner or later, and heavy duty kitchen use will cause some wear and tear pretty quickly.

However, there are plenty of knives that use different methods to maintain their edge far better than a typical set of kitchen knives, and are advertised as always staying sharp, or rarely, if ever, needing sharpening. When they're backed by a lifetime warranty, it's hard to go wrong with them. Some even offer free sharpening service as needed, so you can quite literally have them for life.

There are two major ways to accomplish this: by using either serrated edges, or ceramic blades. Both will retain their cutting properties far longer than typical fine edge stainless steel, lasting for quite some time before needing any sort of maintenance.

  • Serrated blades work like a saw, cutting even if not perfectly sharp, and can be used for all sorts of knives. Ginsu is one of the major manufacturers of knives of this type, and its serrated edges made it a household name, not only for its infomercials, but long-lasting cutlery as well.
  • Ceramic knives are incredibly sharp, maintaining the edge much better than steel, even after years of use. The blades are brittle, however, so they are not suitable for prying or other situations where they might bend, and they shouldn't be dropped. In other words, ceramic knives require more care (in terms of being careful), but less maintenance.

Some chefs like to use both, so they can use the ceramic knives for their cutting edge, and stainless steel when flexibility is key. In fact many of the ceramic knife manufacturers recommend this, suggesting the stainless steel knives for heavy duty use, while the ceramic knives are more suited to slicing fruits and vegetables and other soft things.

Ginsu Knives that Always Stay Sharp

The household fame of Ginsu serrated knives

Ginsu made a name for itself back in the 70s, when its now-infamous infomercial made Ginsu a household name, but it's the cutting quality that kept people coming back year after year. After several decades of sales, it still offers its famous serrated edge cutlery at relative bargain prices, though it has also expanded into fine edge cutlery as well.

The serrated edge styles it offers are the Essentials and the Kotta, both of which use the same Japanese steel blades with a serrated edge. Both offer great value, particularly the Essentials series, which can be found at discount warehouse prices, but with user ratings that put it in the upper echelons of quality cutlery. Definitely worth checking out.

Ginsu (and other) Serrated Knives that Always Stay Sharp

Click to view more options and buy online from Amazon!
Ginsu 04817 International Traditions ...
$49.99  $21.62
Ginsu 14-Piece Stainless Steel Knife ...
Only $69.99
Cook N Home 15-Piece Stainless-Steel ...
$49.99  $31.45

Ceramic Kitchen Knives that Don't Need Sharpening

High-tech ceramic edges stay sharp forever

There's a reason ceramic has been around so long. It's not only easy to make, but incredibly useful as well.

Newer generations of ceramics boast incredibly sharp edges that rarely if ever need sharpening, retaining their cutting edge for many years. They're also immune to rust and many other forms of corrosion, meaning they can last forever with proper care.

They do, however, need to be properly cared for; this won't require extra maintenance, but ceramic is a brittle substance, and ceramic knives are generally not suited toward any sort of task that requires bending the blade at all. It's also a bad idea to drop them on the floor. Of course, it's a bad idea to drop anything on the floor, knife or otherwise, but ceramic knives can chip, damaging the edge and reducing its lifespan. Ceramic knife manufacturers recommend the use of ceramic knives for lighter tasks, such as slicing fruits and vegetables, while keeping the steel knives for heavy-duty tasks.

That said, ceramic knives have legions of adoring fans. Major brands like Kyocera or Shenzhen receive universal praise for their permanently sharp edge retention and ease of use, and are backed by proud warranties.

Although ceramic knives do need to be sharpened sooner or later, it's not particularly difficult, with plenty of manufacturers offering honing rods or electric sharpeners to take care of the job. Kyocera will also sharpen a knife for free if you mail it in. With a deal like that, you might never have to buy kitchen knives ever again.

More Kitchen Knives that Stay Sharp

Knives that stay sharp just because they're good

So if there's no such thing as a knife that "always" stays sharp, it opens the door to other options, namely the traditional fine edge stainless steel that has been such a staple of kitchens all over the world for thousands of years.

A quality set of stainless steel knives will last a long time, and with periodic home sharpening, which is not particularly difficult, they'll keep a fine cutting edge for many years. There are, of course, plenty of quality kitchen knives to choose from that always retain a sharp cutting edge, but the easiest way to cut the list down (get it?) to a reasonable size is simply to visit Amazon and filter the search results by 4 stars or more.

Excluding the styles already listed above, this ingenious process yields the following results:

Some Tips on Sharpening

How to sharpen a kitchen knife properly

Most of the knife sets shown immediately above include a honing rod, which is useful for keeping a knife edge sharp and ready for use.

Honing rods will not actually sharpen a knife, but will postpone the need for a "real" sharpening by keeping everything sharp for as long as possible. Care instructions should be followed according to manufacturer instructions, but honing is kind of like flossing: you should probably do it more often than you currently do.

Here's how:

Sharpening or Honing a Knife Instructional Video

Learn how to properly sharpen or hone a knife

Kitchen Knife Honing and Sharpening Tools

Tools to keep your kitchen knives sharp

Although we'd all be overjoyed to find some kitchen knives that never need sharpening, it's not particularly difficult to keep a knife as sharp as it was on day one. Sharp knives are safe knives, as they will reduce the likelihood of accidentally slicing in the wrong direction due to a dull cutting edge.

Remember that it's generally a good idea to pick the kind the manufacturer recommends, especially when it comes to ceramic knives, which generally need specialized tools, or electric sharpeners, which may not be suitable for any type of kitchen knife.

Check out the options below:

Ginsu Knife Reviews

Ginsu Knives that don't (or rarely) need sharpening
Review the Ginsu Chikara knife series, a beautiful, classically designed knife set featuring Ginsu's renowned craftsmanship.
Review the Ginsu Kotta knife series, a high-quality, always-sharp knife set from Ginsu, and buy online for the best price!
Ceramic knives are famous for their super sharp edges, but even the best might need to be sharpened every now and then.
Updated: on 05/03/2012, eslevy17
 
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