Rustproof kitchenware is not difficult to find, though it’s still a bit of a task to pick the best ones out there. Whether it’s tea kettles or even dish racks, there are going to be products on the market that boast about being stainless, spotless, etc., when they’re really subpar. The same goes for one of the most necessary sets of items to have in your home, a set of knives.
It’s a good idea to compare the highest-quality knife sets that the online markets have to offer. And yes, we will focus on knives that won’t rust, whose edge will remain sharp and ready for years to come, even after prolonged use. In addition, this article will contain a handy buyer’s guide if you want to look for your own knife set alternative out there.
Without further ado, let’s take a look at the top 10 picks for rust-free sets of knives.
1. Kyoku 5-Knife Set
Few countries can boast about the sharpness and effectiveness of their knives as openly as Japan. One only needs to look at the Kyoku 5-knife set and they can see why that’s the case.
The set comes with five blades in total, containing a carving knife, a bread knife, a chef knife, a utility knife, and a paring knife. Each of the five contains a blade forged from thin, premium steel treated with cobalt, with the curved, durable handles being made of Pakkawood. The black-and-gray design makes the knives stand out. They will be an excellent item on your kitchen table complete with their wooden stand.
Nearly all of the flaws related to the Kyoku-5 have a bit of an asterisk next to them. Firstly, there are only five knives in the set, which isn’t really that bad since you will only be needing these five in your everyday kitchen work. Next, they might be a bit too sharp, which is again more of a plus for people who do a lot of cutting. Finally, there’s the price, which is rather high but far from the highest on this list.
2. Zwilling J.A. Henckels TWIN Signature Knife Block Set
Zwilling J.A. Henckels TWIN Signature knife block set is the German answer to some of the other high-rated knife sets on the market today. This block set contains a total of 10 pieces and a wooden block stand. Among the ten are incredibly sharp utility knives, an excellent chef knife, a pair of durable twin L shears, and honing steel.
Each blade is stamped and ice-hardened, unlike most of the other options out there. Ice-hardening prolongs the lifespan of any blade, making these knives earn their spot on this list. In addition, each polymer handle has triple riveting so it can remain in one place for years. In other words, these knives will definitely not be falling apart in your hand.
Like most high-quality German kitchenware, Zwilling TWIN knives are incredibly durable and sturdy, but they feel very light. In other words, they strike the perfect balance between practicality and performance. Admittedly, the wooden block set might be a bit too large for some kitchen tables. Of course, it still looks stylish enough to be proudly displayed in your kitchen.
3. Farberware 15-Piece Knife Block Set
The Farberware 15-piece set happens to be an excellent choice if you want to save some money on silverware and kitchen utensils. Even without discounts, it still costs almost half of what some of the premium brands do. And performance-wise, it is definitely up to par.
The set comes with 12 knives, with six of them being regular steak knives. The wood block that comes with the set is painted matte black, giving it a futuristic, sleek look. However, the knives themselves are a silvery-grayish color, which somewhat clashes with the block itself. Furthermore, the shears and the honing steel have plasticky black handles, so there’s a mismatch there too.
4. McCook 15-Piece Set
Having a solid 100% stainless steel set is incredibly useful. They are easy to clean and maintain, plus they can be incredibly durable. The McCoce set falls squarely into this territory, which is why it’s one of our top picks for the best rust-free knife sets.
Looking at each of the knives that come with this set, you can see why they are so appealing. Both the handle and the blade are made of sturdy, rust-free steel treated with carbon. In other words, it will take an immense force to either break or damage them, and they are as sharp and powerful as the rest of the options on this list. In fact, McCook guarantees quality by having each set checked no less than five times before they end up in retail.
While the set doesn’t come with its own honing steel, it does contain two pairs of shears, utility and all-purpose. In addition, you get a stylish, wooden block stand that looks amazing on any kitchen countertop. However, it is a bit bulky, so it will take up a lot of room.
5. Vestaware 16-Piece Chef Knife Set
Vestaware 16-piece set of knives might be somewhat pricey. In fact, it might even be pricier than some options that perform a bit better which we list in this article. However, once you give these knives a try, you will know that they are worth every penny.
Of the 15 tools available in your beautiful wooden stand, there isn’t one that doesn’t have lovely wooden handles. And except for the honing steel, the blades’ handles are triple-riveted. Durability and sturdiness is the top priority of Vestaware, and these blades are proof of that.
The design of each blade and handle makes the knives incredibly ergonomic. However, the designer did not opt for wooden handles by accident. They specifically wanted the knives to have a natural, organic, homey feeling to them. Thus, the wooden finish was the perfect option.
Of course, some sets use plastic, resin, or steel for efficiency or practical reasons, and that’s fine. But those don’t have the same aesthetic impact as Vestaware.
6. Home Hero Stainless Steel Set
If we had to pick the single most interesting and innovative product that’s on the market out there, we would have to go with Home Hero and its 17-piece set. Very few sets out there will leave you speechless from simply looking at them. It’s probably the most ‘2022’ out of all the options we have listed thus far. In fact, we can easily see it as being popular throughout 2023.
Every single individual piece, from the chef knife to the sharpener, sports the matte black/metallic gray combo, with the black clearly dominating. The stainless steel is coated with nonstick paint and comes with ergonomic PP handles. Not only are these knives sharp and durable, but you will not see a single scratch on them. Plus, they are amazingly easy to clean; it takes a single rinse and wipe, and you’re good to go.
Price-wise, they are among the less expensive knife sets, which means you can get a set of superior blades if you’re on a tight budget. The only real snag is the transparent hard-plastic stand. While it is innovative in terms of design and while it does show off the knives in all their beauty, it’s a bit cumbersome and doesn’t really fit every kitchen aesthetic. Of course, that shouldn’t take away from the high quality of the knives themselves.
7. J.A. Henckels International Statement Knife Block Set
Henckels blades contain stamped steel, making them lighter than forged blades, but just as durable. Each knife in this set will feel as light as a feather. However, you will not be able to break them no matter how hard you try. Furthermore, the knives are some of the sharpest on the current market, perfect for cutting anything from bread to veal.
Design-wise, you can choose between dark-brown and light-brown wooden stands for your knives. However, the knives themselves retain that old black-and-metallic charm. Each handle also has a stainless steel end cap, providing the person using them with the perfect balance.
One detail that might put off potential buyers is the price. A set of 15 knives will not be cheap, but there are definitely high-quality sets on the market that cost half as much as Henckels’ products. Of course, if you’re prepared to pay a little extra, that won’t be a problem for you. Plus, you’ll be the owner of an excellent set of knives for everyday use.
8. ZYLISS 6-Piece Kitchen Knife Set With Sheath Covers
6-piece sets tend to be a bit underrated. That’s especially true if you can buy a solid 12-piece or 15-piece alternative for the same amount of money. However, if you’re looking for a decent, reasonably-priced half-a-dozen of blades, look no further than the colorful ZYLISS 6-Piece Kitchen set.
We did not call this set colorful for no reason; each individual handle (as well as each individual sheath cover) comes ina different color, providing some fun design variety to your knives. In addition, the handles themselves are made of rubber, making the grip easier on the hands.
The blades, on the other hand, are a mix of stainless steel and carbon, perfect when it comes to durability. With these knives, you will be able to cut, peel, carve, and slice your way into many meals to come. And the best part about them is the fact that you can actually machine-wash them.
In addition, if you want to go on a picnic and need some utensils to prepare meals on the spot, simply slip the sheaths on these blades and take them with you.
Sadly, unlike most of the options on our list, these knives do not come with their own stand. You can either use a different stand and keep the knives separately from the sheaths or keep them sheathed in a drawer. Either way, it’s a bit of a design flaw that, in reality, doesn’t take much away from the performance of ZYLISS blades.
9. Cuisinart 12-Piece Color Knife Set
There really isn’t much to say about Cuisinart. The brand has been around for half a century, and throughout the years they have proven themselves to be one of the most cutting-edge blade manufacturers in the US. Their very own Cuisinart 12-Piece color set showcases why they earn such a high position among the different knife brands in 2023.
Much like ZYLISS, each of the six blades in this set is color-coded to avoid cross-contamination as you prepare your food. Moreover, the stainless steel blades all come coated in a high-grade nonstick ceramic substance, making them easy to clean. The knives also come with their own protective sheaths, once again an excellent method of keeping them safe from contamination and protecting them during a trip.
Regarding the price, Cuisinart’s half-a-dozen knife set doesn’t cost too much, but it’s still somewhat more expensive than the alternatives. That, along with the lack of a proper knife stand, might deter you from getting them. However, they are still an excellent option for anyone that doesn’t need a massive 15-piece set in their kitchen.
10. Mercer Culinary Millennia 8-Piece Knife Roll Set
Nearly all of the sets on this list have been standard kitchen fare, with solid stands for every kitchen counter out there. However, to cap off this list, we’ve decided to include a set of knives tailor made for campers, travelers, vagabonds, and wanderers alike.
The Mercer Culinary Millennia 8-Piece roll set is, far and beyond, the best option for any person that is constantly on the move. The utensils, including a honing steel, come in a handy zip-up roll-up case. Simply roll it up and take the knives with you, and when you need them, taking them out is a breeze.
The knives themselves are incredibly durable, with stainless steel blades and ergonomic handles made of Santoprene and polypropylene. In addition, they contain textured finger points that prevent any slipping and maintain proper grip and friction.
Rust-Free Knife Set Buyer’s Guide
Buying the best knife set requires a bit of research. So, in order to get the best option possible for your kitchen, you will require our handy buyer’s guide below that goes into some detail on what makes a blade stand out.
Generally speaking, if you need a knife that doesn’t rust, you will want one of these four options:
- Stainless steel
- Carbon steel
- Damascus steel
Of these four, ceramic knives are the only non-metal items, i.e. they will never rust even if you soak them in water for years. However, they also tend to chip a lot and lack the durability of hard metals.
Both stainless and carbon steel have the durability part down, but they come with their own set of flaws. Carbon steel will eventually rust if not maintained properly. On the other hand, stainless steel bends and twists a lot more easily than other options. Nevertheless, both variants tend to be excellent when it comes to performance and sharpness.
Damascus steel is probably your best and safest material for a blade. The only issue is the fact that Damascus steel knives are incredibly expensive. So, unless you’re willing to pay at least $80 per single blade, you might want to avoid buying them.
The tang is the unexposed, dull part of the knife that goes into the handle. Depending on what type of tang you have, your knife will perform differently, but it will also come with its own set of risks. Broadly speaking, you have three types of tangs.
- Half-tang reaches only halfway into the handle. Using knives with half-tangs runs the risk of snapping the handle in half.
- Rat-tail tang is a thin, narrow strip of metal that runs through the whole handle. When used a lot, it will come loose eventually.
- Full tang is a solid piece of metal that runs throughout the handle and the best option for any knife due to balance and durability.
The handle of your knife needs to provide a solid grip so your hand doesn’t slip while you are cutting. Furthermore, it needs to have a shape that fits the hand and doesn’t cause too much hand fatigue. For instance, if you’re left-handed, you might consider getting left-handed knife sets.
Broadly speaking, knife handles are made from the following materials:
- Synthetic alloys
Balance is key for any knife, be it a hunting blade or a kitchen utensil. In other words, the weight ought to be evenly distributed between the blade and the handle.
One way to check if that’s the case is to balance the knife between your middle finger and index finger and see if it tips towards either side. If the handle is heavier than the blade, then your knife won’t cut your items effectively. On the other hand, if the blade is too heavy, it will be cumbersome to use.
Your knife, no matter its size or purpose, needs to rest comfortably in your hand. A huge part of that depends on the handle size, shape, and materials that go into it. For example, if you want a product that doesn’t put a lot of stress on your hand, get a knife with a noticeable bolster. Bolsters allow your index finger to rest on them as you do the cutting, reducing the strain on your hand overall.
Some knives will be heavier than others, e.g. a chef knife will need some mass, while a peeling knife won’t. Of course, there is no one set rule when it comes to a knife’s weight, but a good guideline is to make sure it’s not too hefty. Otherwise, you will not be able to use it properly.
Rust can ruin a perfectly good knife, and while restoring it is not an issue, it takes away a lot of your free time. Hopefully, the list of best knife sets that won’t rust and a handy buyer’s guide can help you decide on the perfect set that will adorn your kitchen counter.