Admit it: When was the last time you dusted off your spiralizer? While some gadgets exist simply to hog valuable kitchen cabinet real estate, other everyday staples are worth every penny of a serious investment. At the top of that list of must-haves is a standout set of steak knives. A dull knife is both annoying and dangerous (and we have a handy shopping guide all about the best knife sharpeners, if you're in the market!), but a solid steak knife set can be a game-changer.
Whether you’re slicing into a perfectly seared sirloin, or dicing an heirloom tomato, a steak knife is the first thing you reach for whenever you’re digging into something with a crispy outside and a soft inside. That’s why we’ve rounded up the best steak knives sets, all chef-approved, whether to elevate your dinner experience, or give as a gift to a lucky friend. (Hint, hint: a set of steak knives makes for a top-notch wedding or housewarming gift.)
What makes a good steak knife
A quality steak knife’s only job is to glide through food effortlessly. Easier said than done, though. When looking for a steak knife set, narrow down your selection by material (high-quality stainless steel is a must), and then think about how—and how often— you’re going to use the set. Much of what makes a good steak knife set comes down to preference, so consider what makes a good steak knife set for you.
"What makes a good steak knife set: a sharp edge; sturdy steel, with just a small amount of bend (or give) to ensure cutting the steak with as few passes with the knife as possible; an ergonomic handle, so when you are cutting your steak your hand isn't getting drenched in sauce," says Portland-based professional chef, Sara Hauman, who appeared on Top Chef.
As you’re shopping, ask yourself a few questions: Do you want thin handles or do you prefer a heavy wooden handle that gives off steakhouse vibes? Do you prefer serrated knives or straight edge blades? Do you mind hand-washing, or are you a dishwasher-only household? Do you host friends and family for dinner often? What kind of storage does the set require, and does your kitchen have the counter or drawer space for it?
And one smart tip: Don't ever use your steak knives to cut through citrus fruit. "Avoid cutting citrus with your steak knives to ensure the edge stays sharp," says Hauman.
Once you sort through those decisions and tips, scroll on to find the best steak knife set that fits your needs. Bon appetit!
The best steak knife sets
If the thought of hand-washing your steak knives at the end of a raucous dinner party has you yawning, opt for this sleek dishwasher-safe set of eight slightly serrated knives. Since they’re made of a single piece of steel, they’re both dishwasher-friendly and won’t accumulate food in any crevices. (Yuck!) The thick, weighty handles are comfortable to control without being too heavy, and the wooden case creates a beautiful home for them—and makes for a good-looking gift too.
What reviews say: “These knives are sharp, attractive, and have enough weight to them to feel substantial and not cheap. They have a neutral design that goes well with most stainless steel flatware. And unlike the steak knives with wooden handles, they wash up well in the dishwasher. They’re a good value for the price and look like they’ll last forever.” – Amazon customer
Go ahead, do a double tag at this Amazon Basic’s steak knife set’s price. They are no frills, but they are not going to do damage to your credit card statement, either. This set of eight steak knives features triple-riveted handles and micro-serrated edges (that never need sharpening!), and they’re worth adding to your cart. Trust us, or trust the 11,000-plus reviews. If you need to stock up on an extra set of knives—oops, don’t have enough for that dinner party you’re hosting this weekend?—this is the one to add to your cart.
What reviews say: ”These knives were super cheap, but man, do you get bang for the buck! These are super ergonomic and cut through everything with ease. I usually run through knives pretty regularly, having to buy new ones every few months, but these have been going strong since I bought them. These just may be the best cheap knives I’ve ever bought. Buy them—they are worth five times the price!” – Amazon customer
Casual cooks, keep scrolling. Since this set of four Shun steak knives carries a serious price tag, they’re for equally-as-serious culinary devotees. The knives, which are handcrafted in Japan, are inspired by centuries-old samurai sword-making techniques, which creates a cuts-like-butter sharp blade. While the blade design is soaked in history, this set features new technology too, like the moisture-resistant, resin-infused handles, which are both ultra comfortable and easy to control.
What reviews say: “These are rather large steak knives with good weight and balance. They are strikingly beautiful and wickedly sharp. In a way of christening these knives (that’s a thing, right?), I cooked delightfully thick filets and decided to see just how wonderfully these knives would handle the steaks. The verdict? Flawless! While these are pricey, they are worth the price. I would absolutely purchase these again and I don’t mind spending money if the quality is there.” – Williams Sonoma customer
Wüsthof has made a name for themselves as a top-tier knife brand, and for good reason. This set of four steak knives are made of high carbon stainless steel blades that cut with crazy precision, so you’ll never struggle through a New York strip ever again. They’re easy to care for too, since they resist corrosion and dulling, and come with a limited lifetime warranty. (Just don’t put them in the dishwasher—these are strictly hand wash only.) No wonder they are Ina Garten’s favorite knife brand. If they’re good enough for Ina…
What reviews say: “These knives were purchased to complete a knife set received as a wedding present. They have stayed awesome for the two years we have owned them. These knives make a steak (or chicken, or whatever) so easy to cut you hardly have to pay attention. Hand wash and they will treat you well for years to come.” – Amazon customer
For a sleek, understated steak knife, nab one (or two) of these Marin sets. Their clean, upscale design makes for a striking addition to any place setting, and their 18/10 stainless steel blades can slice through the thickest of steaks like no big deal too. Once you’re done with dinner, throw them in the dishwasher. Just avoid using citrus-scented dish washers, as they can cause rust.
What reviews say: “We had this on our registry to match our flatware set and when we received them they were not only beautiful, but they matched our set perfectly. These are stylish and classy to match any dinner table. Love these!” – Crate & Barrel customer
It’s easy to see why this set of eight Wüsthof steak knives is a best-seller for Williams Sonoma. Crafted from 18/10 stainless steel, the serrated knives are as efficient as they are elegant—and come in a beautiful acacia wood storage case, too. (Perfect for storing in your own kitchen, or presenting as a gift.) Wüsthof has been renowned for their fine cutlery since 1814, so if you’re down to invest a bit of money, they’re always a good bet for a set that’ll last a lifetime.
What reviews say: “This is a beautiful knife set. The knives feel good and balanced.” – Williams Sonoma customer
Who says steak knives need to be serious? They don’t—and that’s why we love this colorful set of six steak knives from Laguiole Heritage. They’re made of high-quality tempered stainless steel (read: super resistant to rust, stains, and discoloration) with ergonomic, ABS plastic handles in a rainbow of colors. Though they are dishwasher safe, hand washing is recommended. Here’s guessing they’ll make you smile every time you open your cutlery drawer.
At this price, you may want to add a few of these Foster steak knives set to your cart. (Or wedding registry, or “nudge, nudge, my birthday is coming up” wishlist…) That way you can host dinner without worrying that someone will have to saw through their meal with a butter knife—a big hosting no-no! This set evokes simple Scandinavian look with an ultra-sleek design, and sharp serrated blades that are made of 18/10 stainless steel. And best yet, when you’re done with dinner, you can simply throw them in the dishwasher.
What reviews say: “I was skeptical of requesting this item for my registry, but I shouldn’t have been. These knives are solid, sturdy, modern, and can cut through everything that you need to cut through in the kitchen. The design is simple, yet elegant, which I appreciate as well.” – Crate & Barrel customer
How elegant is this set of six rosewood-handled knives? They’d make for a beautiful addition to any place setting, and since the blades have been ice tempered, you’ll be able to whip them out for meals for years to come. (Switzerland-based Victorinox knows how to make long-lasting knife sets—they’ve been making them since 1884.) This set won’t make your wrists ache either; they perfectly ride the line of slight, yet substantial.
What reviews say: “Thank goodness I found these. The blade is so thin and sharp, it cuts 1.5″ thick steak like cotton. The handle is very fancy as well. The whole knife is lightweight.” – Amazon customer
For a classic wooden steak knife, invest in a set of these knives from renowned German company Wüsthof. The handles are made of plum wood, which offers a cornucopia of color variations with swirled, irregular grains, so you’ll slice through your steak with a one-of-a-kind knife. Wüsthof’s well regarded high-carbon, stainless steel blades make for ultra-easy cutting, but, as with all wooden-handle knives, these are strictly hand wash only.
What reviews say: “These knives are great! They are not serrated so are able to be sharpened. Love the look of them and can tell they will last a long time. We love them!” – Crate & Barrel customer
One up-close look at these wooden-handled steak knives from Laguiole, and you’ll be convinced of their exquisite craftsmanship. They’re created at a family-owned factory in France with oak handles, stainless steel blades, and Laguiole’s signature bumblebee to verify authenticity. You can rest easy about their beautifully grained oak wood handles too, since they are certified sustainable by the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification, the world’s largest forest certification system. Chances are you’ll want to show them off to guests—and you can, in their open wood storage box.
What reviews say: “Makes cutting through steak effortless. Have used a few times and love them. Hand-washes easily. Five stars for design: the wood grain is lovely and the bee detail on the back is a special little touch that makes me smile.” – Crate & Barrel customer
A full-size steak knife set that’s budget-friendly and cuts through any tough food with little force = win/win/win. The nearly 3,000 glowing Amazon reviews agree that this set of serrated knives from Henckels is worth adding to your cutlery drawer. (Just think: at this price, each knife costs less than six dollars.) Here’s betting you won’t regret it. Though they are dishwasher safe, hand washing is recommended to extend their lifespan.
What reviews say: “We’ve owned these exact steak knives since college. They’re absolutely wonderful. The handles have gotten a bit of wear, but the cutting edge is as sharp as ever and we routinely use them to open packages and boxes in addition to cutting food. The cutting edge is like a very finely serrated blade that somehow stays sharp and also cuts all different types of foods easily. They’re great knives and I plan to get several more sets just in case they stop making them so every 15-20 years we can pull out a new set.” – Amazon customer
If serrated isn’t your go-to steak knife style, consider a set of these straight edge stainless steel knives with comfortable cushion-grip handles from Chicago Cutlery. The smooth blades come as sharp as can be, but the straight edge allows you to sharpen them if they dull over time. To keep them in their best shape for years to come, be sure to keep them out of the dishwasher (instead, gently hand-wash them).
What reviews say: “These came sharp enough that my six year old could use them, fairly uncoordinated and lacking muscle as he is, and cleanly and (fairly) neatly cut up his own steak at the dinner table. And my wife is not known for cooking the softest, most delicate steak.” – Amazon customer
Have you ever seen a more beautiful set of steak knives? No? That’s what we thought. Material Kitchen’s set of knives are made with German straight stainless steel blades and a grippy handle that’s available in an array of soothing colors. (If you can’t decide on a color, don’t! Choose the “mixed” option, so you’ll receive one of each.) The knives’ smart design extends to its maple holder too, which can stand upright on a counter, taking up minimal space, or can lie horizontally in a drawer.
What reviews say: “What a pleasure to use and to behold — these knives kinda just glide right through whatever needs cutting on your plate, and they’re quite lovely, as well! Very happy to have these on hand.” – Material customer
This set of four fine edge steak knives are both classic and modern, with handsome pakkawood handles and sharp, rust-resistant stainless steel blades. Even though “steak knives” might make you think of a meat-heavy meal, the smooth edges allow for precise chopping, slicing, and dicing of all fruits, fish, and vegetables too. Best of all, we love the story of Messermeister: this small business, located in Ojai, California, is the only fully women-owned and -operated knife company in the world.
What reviews say: “These don’t disappoint. They cut really well, look nice, and are super affordable compared to the other more expensive brand names. I bought these and threw my old steak knives out.” – Amazon customer
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