Santoku knife and the difference with a chef’s knife

kitchen knives

Santoku is a Japanese term that means “three virtues”. It’s used to delineate the three main uses of the knife: slicing (chopping), mincing (chopping), and cutting (slicing). Other chefs say that these three virtues refer to the use of three parts of the blade: the main cutting edge, the heel, and the tip. However, others simply say it refers to the ability to cut meats, vegetables, and fish. Whichever translation you prefer, the Santoku knife’s many uses make it a kitchen essential.

The Santoku knives are smaller than the chef’s knife and lighter in weight. However, the knife’s shape is the most distinctive. The Santoku knife is 6 to 7 inches long and has a shorter blade. It also features a wider, flatter cutting edge and curved tip than the Western-style chef’s knives with their pointed tips and large belly. This allows for more up-and-down chopping, which means that the blade must be lifted off of the cutting board between each slice. Think of the sound that a chef makes while chopping through food like a boss.

Santoku knife and the difference with a chef's knife

Another distinctive feature is the “Granton”, or “scalloped”, edge. These indentations allow air pockets to pass between the blade’s surface and your ingredients, helping to prevent them from sticking to the slices. This makes the Santoku knife the go-to tool for creating perfectly uniform slices of fish for sushi and sashimi and for finely mincing delicate herbs, while the width of the blade is great for scooping up ingredients – just be sure to use the spine of the blade and not the cutting edge to avoid dulling your blade, and check out these other tips for following the rules of kitchen knife safety.

While Japanese chef knives are traditionally sharpened on one side (single-bevel), double-bevel Santoku knives are becoming more popular in recent years. The F.N. The Sharp Santoku knife has some of the same characteristics as the Western-style chef knife. It features a double bevel edge, sharpened at a 50/50 ratio (13 degrees per side), and a curve to allow for the rock chop technique.

What is a santoku knife used for

The definition of the term ‘Santoku’ clearly states what it can be used for. It is the ‘three virtues or ‘three uses’ (chopping, dicing, and mincing). These tasks are handled in an excellent manner, but it is not able to chop large bones or slicing bread. It can also perform precision tasks like peeling. Santoku knives excel at cutting thin slices of food, which enhances the aesthetics of finished dishes.

What is a santoku knife used for

Santoku knife good for 

  • Cut meat
  • Slicing cheese
  • Chopping, chopping, or dicing fruits and vegetables, as well as nuts
  • You can mince meat and herbs
  • Wide blade makes it easy to scoop food from a cutting board
  • Finely slice vegetables and seafood, especially for creating delicious dishes
  • Santoku knives are slightly shorter than a chef’s knife (8″ vs 10″) and have a seamless handle to blade design. They are great for people with small hands.

Santoku Knives vs Chefs Knives

Untrained eyes may not see the difference between a Santoku knife and a Chef’s knife. There are some important differences between them. To be able to select the best one for you, it is important to know these differences.

Santoku Knives vs Chefs Knives

The key difference

Let’s start with the similarities before we discuss the differences. Both knives can be used for general purposes, such as chopping and slicing and dicing, and mincing. They are a popular choice in professional and home kitchens.

They can be made from a variety of materials, including ceramic and metal. Steel is preferred by professional chefs for its durability and resistance to corrosion. This is because Japanese blades, such as the Santoku, are made from thinner but harder steel. This allows chefs to do precise tasks. One example is Japanese Honshu Steel.

There are two types of Santoku knives: a chef’s knife and one that is a chef’s knife. The differences between them stem from their origin and the shape of the blade. This determines what type or style of cut or slice they can make.

Santoku & Chef’s knife features

Santoku knifeChef’s knife
– Originated in Japan
– A wide sheepsfoot blade without a tip (a dull back spine which curves down to meet a straight-edged front edge)
– A Chef’s knife has a thinner blade, which allows for finer slicing
– Can be single-sided (one-sided), or double-sided (both sides). A bevel is a surface that has been ground to create the knife edge.
– There is usually no bolster (the metal piece between handle and blade)
– Weight balance
– Holdings are lighter
– A Granton edge may be present. This is a small divot/scallops that prevent food from sticking to the blade.
– Variable in size between 5″ and 7.9″.
– Originated in Germany, France
– The broad blade curves upwards to form the tip. The spine is thicker to increase weight.
– Available in serrated varieties
– This is usually only available in double bevels
– A bolster
– To hold: Heavier
– May have a Granton edge
– Variable in size, from 6″ to12″ (8″ is the most popular, but professionals often choose 10″ or 12″).


Sharpening refers to the re-alignment of a knife’s blade. Here are three reasons you should sharpen knives.

Sharpening santoku knife
  1. Safety: All knives will eventually become dull, regardless of how often you use them. A dull knife can pose a great risk because it requires more force to cut, which increases the chance of injury and accidental slippage.
  2. The perfect finish: Sharp knives keep the food’s integrity intact. A dull knife can damage the food cells, which can lead to a loss of taste and aesthetics.
  3. Enjoy the pleasure of sharpening your knife. It makes cooking easier and more enjoyable.

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