Best japanese chef knife under 100

10 Best Japanese Chef Knives Under $100 [You Won’t Believe]

(Last Updated On: August 1, 2021)

What is interesting to note about Chef Knives is the fact that you can buy one for as little as $10, but you can also find ones that cost as much as $1000 or even much more. With that being said, it’s not hard to understand why some of these knives cost as much as they do, mainly because of their high-quality materials and long-lasting durability, not to mention the fact that some of them are so razor sharp that you could perform surgery with them.

Keeping that in mind, not everyone has an arm and a leg to spend on a kitchen knife, which means that you may have to settle for something a little more cost effective. However, just because a kitchen knife is cost effective does not mean that it is low quality, especially if you spend as much as $100 on one.

Of course, $100 is still quite a bit of money to spend on a single knife, so you do want to find the right one for your purposes. Now, as far as knives go, Japanese knives are regarded as being some of the best out there, which is what we are here to look at today.

Let’s get right to it and take a look at the 10 best Japanese chef knives under $100 that your money can buy. On a side note, we also have a buyers guide lined up for you to provide you with all of the information that you need in order to make an informed decision.

What are the TOP 5 Best Chef Knife Under $100?

Tojiro DP Gyutou 8.2″ Chef Knife

Mac Knife Series Hollow Edge 8-inches Chef’s Knife

Yoshihiro VG-1 GOLD Clad Steel Chef’s Knife

Shun Sora 8-inches Chef’s Knife

Zelite Infinity Executive Chef Knife 8 Inch

Let’s Move to the Review of Best Chef Knives Under $100

#1. Tojiro DP Gyuto 

1. Tojiro DP Gyuto

If you are looking for a very high quality Japanese chef knife that won’t cost you a fortune, then this particular one is a great option to keep in mind. Now it does get right up to that $100 mark, so it’s definitely not going to be the cheapest option on the list today. But with that being said, it does also come from a great brand name that is known for producing quality products.

This particular knife comes in at 0.21 kilograms and comes complete with an 8.2 inch long blade. The blade length here is more than long enough to take care of any kitchen tasks that might need doing. It’s not so long that it becomes UN maneuverable, but it’s also not so short that it’s not large enough to deal with big tasks. Keeping that in mind, the blade on this knife is made to be quite thin and it comes to a very sharp and fine edge, which means that it is ideal for making precision cuts.

What is also important to note is that this blade features an even edge, which means that it can be used by both left and right handed users. You may also like. The fact that this particular knife is made out of very high quality Japanese stainless steel, which means that it is fairly hard and durable, not to mention that it is also rustproof. In terms of edge retention, it also performs quite well, plus it is easy to sharpen when needed.

Some people may not like the fact that this knife comes with a plastic handle, but with that being said, plastic handles are waterproof and are actually quite durable, not to mention the fact that the one on this knife is designed to be ergonomically friendly and comfortable to hold for long periods of time. The only slight issue that we can see with the handle is that it might get a bit slippery when wet.

Pros

  • Very thin and lightweight
  • Ideal for precision cutting
  • Good blade length for most tasks
  • High quality stainless steel
  • Ergonomic handle
  • Great for most cutting styles

Cons

  • Handle can be slippery when wet
  • Will need regular sharpening

#2. Mac Knife Chef Series Hollow Edge Chef’s Knife

If you are looking for a basic yet effective chefs knife that can handle more or less any task in the kitchen, whether chopping vegetables or slicing meat, then this is a good option to consider. For one, we do like how the blade is a total of eight inches in length, which means that it’s not so long that it becomes UN maneuverable, but also long enough to take care of virtually any task in the kitchen.

The shape of the blade itself is also very beneficial because it features a slight rounded edge that comes to a very sharp point, which means that it should be ideal for cutting most types of foods, and for most cutting styles. You may also appreciate how the blade comes complete with divots from front to back, which means that food should not stick to it.

In terms of thickness, the blade is only two millimeters thick, not to mention the fact that it is ground to a very fine point, which means that it is ideal for making precision cuts and can make extremely thin slices. What you need to keep in mind here is that the blade is made out of molybdenum steel, a special kind of high carbon alloy steel known for its strength, durability, hardness, and edge retention. Not only will this knife stays sharp over many uses without sharpening, but it also won’t rust either.

Something that is pretty cool about this particular knife is the fact that it comes with a pakkawood handle, which not only looks nice, but is also ergonomically designed to fit the shape of the hand. It may not have much of a texture to it, but the shape of the handle should prevent you from slipping when your hands are wet.

Pros

  • High-quality steel
  • Food won’t stick to the blade
  • Good blade length and shape for most tasks
  • Real wood handle
  • Very durable and rust resistant
  • Comfortable to hold
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Handle is not waterproof
  • Not dishwasher safe
  • On the more expensive side of things

#3. Yoshihiro VG-1 Gold Stainless Steel Gyuto Japanese Chef Knife

If what you are looking for in a chef knife is a combination of functionality and beauty, then this is definitely a great option to go with as this is by far the best looking knife on the list so far and probably the best one on the list in general. What does need to be said is that this is a very highly trusted brand name in Japan, and yes, this knife is made in Japan, which should speak to its overall quality and durability. Japanese products are generally always very high in quality.

This particular knife is made out of VG1 stain resistant steel, a very high quality steel that is rather perfect for kitchen knives. This steel, although it is not 100% rustproof, should be able to resist corrosion and rusting, especially if you keep it dry. Moreover, this steel is also exceptionally hard and durable, which means that it comes sharp out of the box and it will retain its edge for a long time to come. This is definitely one tough customer.

In terms of the size of the blade, it is 7.1 inches in length, which is a pretty good size for most tasks. All but the very largest of kitchen jobs. We do really like the shape of the blade as it features a slightly rounded edge that makes it ideal for rocking back and forth, thus making both chopping and slicing extremely easy. Mincing garlic is made very fast thanks to this, but thanks to the sharp point at the front, it works fine for cutting meat too.

Something else that stands out about this particular Japanese chef knife is the fact that it comes complete with a real mahogany wood handle. Mahogany is one of the toughest types of wood out there, it looks extremely nice, and it’s comfortable to hold too. This is the kind of knife that you can use for hours on end without getting fatigued or uncomfortable.

Pros

  • Very lightweight
  • Good for precision cutting
  • Good blade size and shape for most jobs
  • High quality VG-1 Steel
  • Awesome mahogany handle
  • Looks super cool

Cons

  • Handle could use some more texture
  • Not dishwasher safe

#4. Shun VB0706 Sora Chef’s Knife

Right off the bat, what is important to note here has to do with the shape of the blade. The blade here comes to a very acute point, and the blade itself is just slightly rounded. So while this knife will perform well for mincing and general slicing, it performs exceptionally well at cutting meat. Cutting meat is the number one job that you should use this knife for. In terms of the blade length, keep in mind that it is 8 inches long, which as you probably know by now is a good length for most jobs in the kitchen.

What needs to be said about this knife is that it is handcrafted and hand sharpened, which does speak to its overall quality. This knife features a double bevel of 16 degrees, which means that it can be used by both left and right handed people. Not to mention that the edge is quite fine so it should perform well for making precision cuts.

In terms of the material quality and add retention, keep in mind that this particular knife is made with a proprietary composite blade. It’s made with a combination of Japanese 420J stainless steel as well as VG10 stainless steel. Combined, these materials allow for a very hard blade that is almost impossible to break, not to mention that it will retain its edge for a very long time. With that being said, due to its hardness, it can be a bit hard to sharpen on your own.

This knife comes complete with a molded semi hard plastic handle that is extremely comfortable to hold. Due to the fact that it is not rock solid. Moreover, it also allows for a perfect balance with the blade to allow for a great deal of user friendliness. There is also the fact that this plastic handle is waterproof, another big bonus. All in all, we think that this might just be one of the best chef knives for under $100 on the list today.

Pros

  • Very sharp with great edge retention
  • Excellent for most tasks, especially slicing meat
  • Looks very nice
  • Extremely hard and durable
  • Ideal for precision cutting
  • Comfortable handle

Cons

  • A little overpriced for what it is

#5. ZELITE INFINITY Executive Chef Knife

If what you are looking for is a highly functional knife that looks super cool and features are really neat pattern on the blade, then this is a great option to consider. This knife features what some might call a teardrop pattern ingrained onto the sides of the blades, which not only looks super cool, but is also functional because they helped to create air pockets which therefore help to ensure that food does not stick. As you can see, beauty can be functional too. This finish is known as the Storm-X finish.

What also needs to be said about this blade is that it is home to a 12 to 15 degree angle, which means that it is incredibly sharp. This cutting angle has also been mirror polished, which means that it is about as good for precision cutting as humanly possible. This is the kind of knife that you can slice a tomato paper thin with.

One of the most important things to note about this blade is the fact that it is made out of AUS 8 Steel, which is indeed one of the best types of steel that you could possibly use for a knife. This is a very special type of high carbon steel that is about as hard and durable as it gets. Not to mention that it is extremely resistant to corrosion and rusting. The fact that it has a Rockwell hardness rating of 59 +/-1 is also great, because this means that it is one of the hardest blades on the list today, and thus excellent at retaining its edge over a long period of time.

There is also the fact that the tank of this blade fully extends down through the wooden handle. Yes, the wooden handle here is made out of real wood, which not only looks nice, but it’s also quite durable. And also very comfortable to hold for prolonged periods of time without fatiguing. Although with that said, the handle can be quite slippery when wet, which is a bit of a problem at times.

Pros

  • Extremely high quality steel
  • Rust resistant
  • Very durable
  • Super sharp edge
  • Great edge retention
  • Comfortable handle
  • Super cool design pattern

Cons

  • Quite heavy
  • Slippery handle

#6. Miyabi Kaizen Chef’s Knife

OK, so we might be cheating here because this knife does technically cost just a little bit more than $100. But with that being said, it is such an excellent knife that we just had to add it to the list. It’s just a few dollars more expensive than our $100 limit, so it’s really not a big deal. For one, we do like the flower Damascus design of this knife.

What is important to know here is that this knife is made with a combination of VG-10 Super Steel combined with 65 layers of Damascus steel. Moreover, this blade has also been iced hard and to ensure that it is as sharp and hard as humanly possible. When it comes down to it, the combination of various types of steel used here results in one of the most durable blades out there, particularly when it comes to this price point. In terms of overall durability, toughness, corrosion resistance, and edge retention, this is by far one of the best knives on the list today.

Speaking of the edge of this knife, it is ground down to between 9.5 and 12 degrees, which makes it extremely fine and sharp, thus making it one of the best knife options on the list today for making very thin precision cuts. Keep in mind that this is an 8 inch long blade, complete with a katana edge, which therefore makes it ideal for virtually any and every task in the kitchen.

Something else that you might like about this particular chef’s knife is the fact that it comes complete with a linen pattern micarta complete with the mosaic pin and red accents spacers. Now this handle is not 100% waterproof, so you definitely can’t put this knife in the dishwasher, but with that being said, the handle is very comfortable to hold, and it even comes with a very slight texture to it, which means that it shouldn’t get slippery when wet.

Pros

  • Extremely fine, thin, and sharp edge
  • Amazing durability
  • Excellent edge retention
  • Good blade size and shape for most tasks
  • Ergonomic non-slip handle
  • Rockwell hardness rating of 60

Cons

  • Over the $100 limit

#7. DALSTRONG Chef Knife – Phantom Series Gyuto

What is very important to know here is that in terms of the blade shape and size, this is actually a sashimi knife. This type of knife is extremely long, 9.5 inches to be exact, and it is designed to be quite flexible, thus making it ideal for sushi, sashimi, and for general fish cutting purposes. To ensure that this blade is able to cut fish with total accuracy and precision, it is expertly honed to between 13 and 15 degrees.

Therefore, it is extremely sharp and fine and therefore able to make very precise cuts. Moreover, the blade itself has been nitrogen cooled for enhanced hardness. In terms of hardness, it is by far one of the hardest blades on the list today, yet also manages to retain some much needed flexibility. What is also interesting to note is that at the top of the blade it is a full 3.5 millimeter thick, which helps to push the sliced piece of fish away from the unsliced piece.

In case you were wondering, the blade here is made out of Japanese high Carbon AUS 8 steel, which is one of the best types of steel to use for this application. It is extremely hard and durable. Not to mention that it is totally rustproof as well. Let’s keep in mind that this is a full tang blade that is forged out of a single piece of that AUS 8 Steel, and it comes complete with a Rockwell hardness rating of 58. This blade comes complete with very smooth pakkawood handle that not only looks great but is also very comfortable to hold. The handle here is also designed so your hands won’t slip.

If you aren’t happy with this knife, keep in mind that it comes complete with 100% satisfaction or money back guarantee, combined with a full lifetime warranty.

Pros

  • Excellent for cutting boneless protein
  • Exceptionally sharp
  • Hard yet flexible
  • Super high-quality steel
  • Comfortable and non-slip handle
  • Great warranty and guarantee

Cons

  • Technically not a chef’s knife

#8. Misono Chef’s Knife

When it comes to Japanese knifemakers, this is one of the oldest and most trusted brands out there with well over 750 years of history in Knifemaking. Yes, these knives are made in Japan and they are made with Japanese materials. These may be Japanese mines, but they are Western in style.

The length of the blade here is a total of 8 inches, and it features a slight rounding of the edge.  Thanks to both the shape and length of the blade, it is ideal for more or less any tasks that you might need to use it for in the kitchen.

This is a full tang knife that is made out of high carbon molybdenum stainless steel, which comes complete with a Rockwell hardness rating of 58. In other words, this is one of the hardest, toughest, and most adorable blades on the list today. This is something that definitely helps in terms of sharpness and edge retention, not to mention the fact that the blade is also completely rustproof. Keep in mind that the blade is edged on both sides, which means that it’s ambidextrous in nature.

The full Tang upper blade reaches all the way through to the end of the pakkawood handle. This handle is designed to be very comfortable and ergonomically friendly, plus it is also fairly durable, although it is not 100% waterproof, so no putting it in the dishwasher. Also, the handle can be a bit slippery when wet.

Pros

  • Good blade size and shape for most applications
  • Very high quality steel
  • Superior hardness and edge retention
  • Quite durable
  • Comfortable handle
  • Made by a trusted brand

Cons

  • Handle can be slippery when wet
  • Handle is a bit short

#9. Hanzo Professional Chef’s Knife

Here we have an extremely flexible, hard and durable chef knife that comes to us from a highly trusted Japanese brand name. First off, the blade here is a total of eight inches in length and comes complete with a slightly rounded edge that comes to a sharp point. Due to both the size and the shape of this blade, we can say that it is ideal for most types of cutting as well As for cutting most types of foods. This is really an all-purpose knife that you can use for virtually any kind of task.

This particular kitchen knife is made out of VG 10 Japanese stainless steel. Of course, as you probably know by now, this is one of the best types of steel that you could possibly use for a chef’s knife. It is extremely hard, strong and durable, yet also retains a good deal of flexibility and maneuverability. Moreover, the blade here is also extremely hard and it comes very sharp out of the box. Add retention is definitely not a problem that this knife suffers from. Also, the edges are honed to such a degree that it allows for precision cutting.

What you also get here is a semi-soft UltraComfort G10 handle. This material is waterproof and very durable, yet also has a good feel and texture that provides you with a non-slip surface to grip onto, not to mention that the handle is contoured to fit the shape of your hand. Just in case you were wondering, yes, and this is a full tang knife, which means that it also features excellent balance.

Pros

  • Ideal shape and size for most tasks
  • Hard and durable steel
  • Very hard with great edge retention
  • Comfortable handle
  • Non-slip grip
  • Retains a good deal of flexibility

Cons

  • A bit heavy
  • Should be sharpened out of the box

#10. Kutt Vacuum Chef Knife Review

What you get here is a truly awesome knife that is hand hammered and handcrafted using 67 layers of Damascus steel that are wrapped around a BG 10 stainless steel core. So first of all, there is no doubt about the fact that Damascus steel looks absolutely amazing and this can be seen on this knife. Indeed, it is one of the best looking chef knives on the list today. What is really cool is that the blade is made to be partly polished and partly textured, which means that it should slice through various foods with exceptional ease. But it also means that foods won’t stick to the blade.

Now going back to that VG10 stainless steel core and those 67 layers of Damascus steel that this blade is made out of, these materials are extremely tough. All in all, you can expect this to be one of the most durable shaft knives out there due to its extreme hardness rating. At the same time, this knife also comes razor sharp out of a box, and due to its excellent hardness, it won’t lose its edge very quickly at all. It would also appear though this knife is ground down to an angle that is more than ideal for taking care of most kitchen related jobs.

On a side note, we would like to say that this knife comes complete with a 4” paring knife, free of cost. Going back to the main knife itself, we do also like how the handle is made out of real pakkawood. Now, this word may not be 100% waterproof, but it is quite durable, it looks nice, and it’s very comfortable to hold too. This handle has a very ergonomically friendly shape that is designed to be comfortable for hours on end. All in all, this is a perfectly fine knife to go with, especially considering the low price that it comes in at.

Pros

  • Good edge retention
  • Very sharp and hard
  • Looks beautiful
  • Good length and size for most jobs
  • Cost effective
  • Free paring knife included
  • Rust resistant

Cons

  • You may not like the texture of the blade

How to Choose the Best Chef’s Knife

What we want to do right now is to provide you with a buyers guide. In other words, we are going to provide you with all of the information that you need in order to make an informed decision. Right now, we’re going to take a look at the most important facts and purchasing factors that go into buying a good chef knife. Let’s figure out how to choose a good chef’s knife for under $100.

1. Blade Length

So, you can take care of most tasks with ease, go for a blade that is between 7.5” and 9.5” in length. Any shorter than that and you may have trouble with big pieces of meat and large vegetable, but any long than that, and the knife may be cumbersome and hard to maneuver.

2. Blade Width

Something else that you need to pay attention to here is the width of the blade. We aren’t going to talk about specific widths here, but what you need to know is that the wider the blade is, the more durable it will be, and the better it will be for heavy tasks. On the other hand, the thinner the blade is, the better it will be for precision cuts.

3. Blade Material

Of course, one of the most important things that you need to pay attention to here is what the blade is actually made out of. As you can see from our abuse today, there are many different types of steel that can be used to make these knives. These types of steel include ones such as normal stainless steel, VG10, stainless steel, AUS 8 stainless steel, Damascus steel, or various other steel alloys. Before you buy a knife, we recommend doing some research on this front.

4. Tang & Balance

You always want a knife that is full tang, which means that the blade material extends all the way down to the butt of the handle in one solid piece. This helps to make kitchen knives much more durable, and it also results in a very well balanced blade.

5. Blade Angle & Sharpness

For most chef’s knives, you want the blade angle to be somewhere between 10 and 15 degrees, as this will allow for the greatest functionality across a wide variety of tasks that you may need a chef’s knife for.

6. Hardness & Edge Retention

The other important thing to pay attention to here is hardness and edge retention. In terms of the Rockwell hardness rating, you want to get a blade that features a rating of at least 55, with the higher the number the better, mainly because the harder the material is, the longer it will retain its edge for.

Final Thoughts

We hope that today’s article was able to assist you in choosing an affordable chef’s knife. Just remember to pay attention to all of the most important purchasing factors and knife features to look out for when making your purchase, and you should have no problems choosing the best one for you! Now that you have all of the info you need, you can make an informed decision on the matter.

 

Leave a Comment:

GinaM says

I love the Yoshihiro brand myself. So beautiful to look at and a pleasure to use. I’m sure it makes my cooking taste better too!

 

Reply
    gias says

    Really? I mean really?? No no Man. You’re kidding 🤣!

     

    Reply
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