High quality specialty knives make culinary tasks fast and easy. Knives with thicker blades are generally intended for cutting through meat and bone, while those with thinner blades are intended for fruits and vegetables. If you’ve had difficulty in cutting tasks, you may be using the wrong knife type, or one of inferior quality. Nakiri knives are specially designed vegetable knives that can change the way you view food preparation. We’ve put together a complete guide for finding the best Nakiri knife for your culinary requirements, along with helpful information and a review of the top rated Nakiri knives.
- At A Glance: Top Picks
- Our Choices For The Best Nakiri Knives In 2020
- 1. Kai USA Pure Komachi 2 Nakiri Knife
- 2. Mercer Culinary Genesis 7-Inch Forged Nakiri Vegetable Knife
- 3. Kyocera Revolution Series 6-Inch Nakiri Vegetable Cleaver
- 4. Kai Wasabi Black Nakiri Knife, 6-1/2-Inch
- 5. ZWILLING Gourmet 6.5-inch Nakiri Knife
- 6. Yoshihiro VG-10 Stainless Steel Nakiri Vegetable Knife (6.5-Inch)
- 7. Shun TDM0742 Premier Nakiri Knife, 5.5-Inch
- 8. Wusthof Classic 7-Inch Nakiri Knife with Hollow Edge, 4193/17
- 9. DALSTRONG Kiritsuke Chef Knife – Shogun Series – VG10 – 8.5″ (216 mm) – Sheath
- 10. Happy Sales HSSR200, Japanese Nakiri Chef Knife
- Considerations Before Buying
- Some Frequently Asked Questions About Nakiri Knives
- Bottom Line
At A Glance: Top Picks
In case you’re in a hurry or just looking for a quick recommendation, here are the top 3 choices. Best all-rounder, best budget pick, and best premium pick.
Our Choices For The Best Nakiri Knives In 2020
After much deliberation, these choices were put together originally in 2018. They were updated in June 2020 to reflect the current market, including some newer models of nakiri knives that were previously listed. Use the quick links to find each knife quickly, or scroll down to read more! 👇
- Kai USA Pure Komachi 2 Nakiri Knife
- Mercer Culinary Genesis 7-Inch Forged Nakiri Vegetable Knife
- Kyocera Revolution Series 6-Inch Nakiri Vegetable Cleaver
- Kai Wasabi Black Nakiri Knife, 6-1/2-Inch
- ZWILLING Gourmet 6.5-Inch Nakiri Knife
- Yoshihiro VG-10 Stainless Steel Nakiri Vegetable Knife (6.5-Inch)
- Shun TDM0742 Premier Nakiri Knife, 5.5-Inch
- Wusthof Classic 7-Inch Nakiri Knife with Hollow Edge, 4193/17
- DALSTRONG Kiritsuke Chef Knife – Shogun Series – VG10 – 8.5″ (216 mm) – Sheath
- Happy Sales HSSR200, Japanese Nakiri Chef Knife
Without further ado, let’s get into it. Ready to choose your next vegetable knife? Let’s start with…
The Pure Komachi 2 delivers high vegetable cutting performance with a non stick blade in vibrant color coding.
The ergonomic design of the lightweight handle is engineered to reduce hand and wrist fatigue. This knife is light to handle weighing just 4 ounces. The blade length is 5.5 inches which makes it suitable for cutting, slicing, chopping and dicing vegetables of all sizes.
Durable sharp edge
High carbon stainless-steel blade material holds an ultra sharp edge longer than other blade materials. The included sheath is an added safety feature to protect the blade and household members from accidental cuts when not in use.
The non-stick coating on each blade allows an easy food release and the color coding on each knife and sheath prevents cross-contamination.
Enjoy the convenience of precision vegetable cutting with the super sharp and comfortable Mercer Culinary Genesis 7 in forged Nakiri Vegetable knife.
The ergonomic handle is made of high quality Santoprene materials for a non-slip grip that gives you firm control of the knife at all times. Even with wet hands, you won’t lose your grip with this super comfortable fatigue relieving design.
All materials in this knife are highly resistant to break down from kitchen oils and extreme heat and cold. Built sturdy to hold up under frequent use in the kitchen environment.
This knife is superbly balanced with Bolster that also strengthens the integrity of the knife. It is also available with a short bolster to meet individual preferences for balance and handling for the perfect vegetable knife for any food preparation task.
Super sharp blade
The blade is made of no-stain German steel and is resistant to discoloration, rust and corrosion. High carbon stainless steel takes a super sharp edge and holds it for extended periods of frequent use.
Taper ground edge
Benefit from he added stability, increase in cutting and chopping efficiency, long lasting sharpness and easy honing of the taper ground edge that is ready to go right out of the package.
Maximum sharpness cuts through vegetables with lightning speed.
Super light weight
Thee Kyocera Ceramic Series Nakiri knife only weighs half of other knives made of steel. This makes it easier to handle and maneuver for precision accuracy in cutting, chopping, slicing and dicing for a more uniform size.
Microscopic precision grinding
Diamond wheels are used on the dense ceramic material that takes the grinding with microscopic precision for the ultimate in unrelenting sharpness that holds up longer than blades made of other materials.
Ceramic materials offer a healthy and pure alternative for a blade that is incapable of rust and will never change from its original state for durability and long life.
The 6 inch Nakiri Vegetable Cleaver is easy to clean with a fast rinse and wipe with a dry kitchen towel. The ceramic material of thee blade does not absorb food elements and this helps in avoiding cross-contamination
Enjoy fast and effortless precision vegetable chopping, slicing and dicing with the Kai Wasabi Black Nakiri 6 1/2 inch knife.
Japanese style Nakiri
The ultra thin blade design is perfect for slicing, chopping or dicing vegetables with precision accuracy. This is the only knife you’ll want to use for veggie preparation.
Long lasting razor sharpness
Daido 1K6 high-carbon stainless steel material gives this knife its ability to hone to a super sharp edge and retain its sharpness under heavy use.
Bead blasted edge
The blade of each Wasabi black are bead blasted to give it an attractive exterior finish The Japanese character for Wasabi is also placed on each knife as a lovely embellishment.
The handle is made of a special clean polypropylene blend that gives it outstanding durability that extends the longevity of this high quality Nakiri knife.
Lightweight nakiri precision for fast and easy vegetable preparation from a very well established German manufacturer.
The 3 riveted handle makes for comfort and stability while chopping vegetables. Zwilling’s gourmet range cite ‘fatigue-free cutting’, which they seem to have done very well.
Ideal size and weight
The 6.5-inch blade length & 4.8-ounce weight makes this nakiri knife a great lightweight option. Although the knife is lighter than forged knives, to help with manoeuvrability, it’s still got enough weight behind it to get through root vegetables comfortably. The length makes it easier to manipulate the knife to achieve different cutting angles quickly and efficiently.
No Stain Steel
This knife is made up of a special formula of high carbon, no stain, steel. Zwilling have been perfecting that for many years throughout their 285-year history of knife making in Germany.
This Yoshiro stainless steel nakiri knife offers superior vegetable cutting, chopping, slicing, dicing and mincing preparation with effortless efficiency.
The wooden handle is extremely comfortable to hold in the hand, giving you the maximum control over the knife during vegetable preparation tasks.
6.5 inch blade
The length of this blade is the ideal size for use with foods of small through large size. This is the knife that can handle all jobs both big and small
Three layer construction
The blade is made super durable, and easy to sharpen, by the 3-layer construction and VG 10 stainless steel centre.
East & West styles perfectly balanced
This knife by Yoshiro is a traditional Japanese vegetable knife, made in Japan, but with a superb quality western-style handle which feels great to use.
The premier Nakiri style knife by Shun offers precision cutting with little effort.
Medium sized blade
Thee 5.5 inch size makes this knife perfect for cutting most vegetable sizes with greater maneuverability and control of the knife.
Thin blade design
The thin blade easily cuts, chops, peels and slices through vegetables in a clean cut that does not leave behind fibers, nor does it mash the foods. It leaves precision cuts for a more uniform size and attractive appearance. Additionally, the ultra thin blade allows you to slice paper thin vegetable garnishes.
Damascus steel is a high quality material that maintains its original form under normal use. This knife has been hand-hammered to produce a finish that prevents foods from sticking to the knife blade and reduces drag when cutting.
The handle is crafted of premium pakkawood. It is designed to nestle into the curves of the palm for a comfortable fit and firm grip when in use.
Realize the importance of a specialized thin blade Nakiri knife for precision accuracy in vegetable preparation.
Granton edge blade
The Granton edge is a specialized angled styling that is applied to both sides of the blade. It is useful for enhancing the speed and effectiveness for slicing and chopping. The Granton edge holds its sharpness for approximately 30% longer than other Asian style blades and it hones to a sharpness of a 30% finer edge.
Get all the benefits of an ultra slim Nakiri knife with the added features of a chef’s knife in this vegetable cleaver that is multi-purpose.
The blade is forged of high carbon stainless steel material that resists rust and corrosion, and holds a superior sharpness in its edge.
Impact resistant handle
This blade is highly durable and resistant to damage thanks to the riveted handlde that attaches to thee full tang. The handle is made of strong materials that hold up under heavy use.
Riveting the handle to the full tang provides an exceptional balance which makes this knife easy to maneuver for precision cuts.
Dalstrong quality makes the Kiritsuke Chef knife a revolutionary innovation in cutting technology.
Master Chef’s knife
This multipurpose knife offers precision cutting for a variety of methods and techniques employed by a master chef. Suitable for push cut and slicing techniques and much more.
Scalpel edge sharpness allows you to cut effortlessly through small through larger foods of all density types with ease.
This is one of the most innovative methods in developing a superior performing knife blade. A three step system is used to achieve razor sharpness and an attractive mirror polish with an 8-12 degree angle per side of the blade. The method uses nitrogen cooling to enhance the hardness, while promoting resistance to corrosion and flexibility. This blade has reached a 62+ on the Rockwell Hardness scale.
Exceptional strength is achieved with 66 layers of high carbon stainless steel. The handle is riveted to the blade with full tang style for additional strength.
The handle is shaped for smooth handling, agility, control and comfort in the hand. The balance makes this knife easy to maneuver for precise and accurate cuts that deliver uniformity in size.
Enjoy the benefits of a professional Sushi knife with a razor sharp edge.
The Happy Sales Japanese Kakiri Chef knife is designed for precise and accurate cutting, chopping or slicing with the super sharp blade
Wood is a natural feeling material. This handle has been ergonomically designed to provide the utmost in comfort and grip for exceptional control during use.
Balanced for efficiency
The stainless steel blade is 6-5/8 inches in length with an overall knife length, including the handle of 11-5/8 inch for amazing balance.
Easy to sharpen
The stainless steel material used in the creation of the blade makes this knife easy to sharpen. It holds an edge for a reasonable amount of time.
Considerations Before Buying
We’ve reviewed the top ten Nakiri knives on the market for your consideration. Each are of high quality and have earned a reputation for being high performers, but there are slight differences in each model shown. Not all knives are the same. A small variation in the handle, weight distribution or style can make a difference in the comfort and efficiency you experience while using them. Here are the main points to consider as you decide which Nakiri will be the best choice for you.
- Balance: How is the knife weighted? Is it lightweight or is it heavy? Is the weight distribution balanced or is it heavier in one part? We all have our preferences for weighting and this can affect the speed and ease of use.
- Budget considerations: Determine how much you are able or willing to spend on a high quality vegetable cutting knife that will last for a lifetime. This is a one time expenditure that will pay off over time. Nakiri knives come in several different models with variations and differences in price. Keep in mind that this is an investment in your kitchen that is likely to replace old knives that failed to meet your expectations for performance, but stay within your established budget.
- Compare features: As you browse through these different options, pay attention to the differences. Consider the length of the blade along with the width and the shape of the handle. Make a note of the features that you find the most appealing, then compare your top choices to help you decide which knife will suit your preferences and food preparation needs the best.
Some Frequently Asked Questions About Nakiri Knives
What is a Nakiri Knife?
The Nakiri knife is a Japanese style and it is made specifically for cutting vegetables. They are crafted with a thin blade that makes slicing or chopping vegetables seem effortless. The design allows a Nakiri to rest flat against the cutting board which means you can slice by just moving the knife straight up and down instead of rocking it back and forth. The thin blade and sharp edge cuts through vegetables quickly and easily for accurate and uniform cuts.
Whats Great About a Nakiri knife?
The benefits of a Nakiri knife make it an essential for your kitchen area. With a Nakiri, you can slice vegetables thick or as thin as a sheet of paper. This is useful for making garnishes. Nakiri knives are also the perfect tool for chopping vegetables. A strait up and down motion cuts through vegetables without the need to apply much pressure. The cuts are clean and even because of the straight and flat edge of the blade. It cuts so cleanly through onions, celery and other veggies that there are no annoying threads or half cut pieces. One of the best things about a Nakiri is that it doesn’t damage or mash the vegetables you’re cutting.
Is It Only Good for Cutting Vegetables?
Technically, you could use a Nakiri knife for cutting fruits or for chopping nuts. It would also do a great job of mincing thinly sliced meats or cubing them. The answer to the question is no, it can be used for other tasks, but we strongly recommend using your Nakiri for its intended purpose. Your culinary preparation work will go much more smoothly if you have the right knife for each task that you perform. It’s a good idea to stick with vegetables for the most satisfying performance from your Nakiri.
Nakiri vs Usuba vs Santoku, How are They Different?
Nakiri and Usuba are both Japanese vegetable knives made for chopping vegetables without the need for horizontal pulling or pushing. They are the same type, but the Nakiri has a definite edge over the Usuaba. While the Usuba has a single bevel blade, the Nakiri has a double bevel on the blade, giving it the advantage of faster and cleaner cuts.
Nakiri and Santoku knives are also the same type, but the blade on the Santoku has a slight curve instead of being completely flat, like the Nakiri. The major difference is in the shape of the blade. Although the Santoku is also used for cutting and chopping meats, it’s more difficult to get a paper thin cut in vegetables with it. This is why we so highly recommend the Nakiri as your premiere vegetable cutting knife. Nakiri, Usuba and Santoku are all high quality Japanese style vegetable knives, but the Nakiri has the edge over these competitors.
Nakiri knives are manufactured by a variety of brands who apply their specialized technology to improve the performance. This gives consumers a wonderful variety of choices, depending on their needs and preferences.
As you are thinking of buying a Nakiri knife, think about which of these knives offer the most useful features for you. Which are within your budget? Do you prefer one length or material type over the other? Each of these knives are of high quality, but there are subtle differences that an affect the way that they perform.
We hope that this information has been helpful in showing you how these remarkable knives can enhance the way that you prepare vegetables as well as other foods in the kitchen. You won’t regret the decision to add Nakiri knives to your cutlery collection of essential tools.
Related reading: great cutting boards to look after your Japanese knives