Whether you’re whipping up a quick dinner for family in the kitchen or taking a long hike in the great outdoors, a good knife is an essential tool for success. Strong, dependable knives make ordinary tasks simple and enable anyone to complete necessary chores. Whether chopping vegetables for a French tureen or cleaning a fresh-caught rainbow trout, a high-quality knife is really all you need. They’re one of the oldest implements created by our species. The first blades were painstakingly crafted from flint, chert or other stone, and were a marvel of human skill and ingenuity. Luckily, the only tool you need to get a knife today is an Internet connection. Below are our top ten choices for the best knives of 2016-2017.
1. Utopia Kitchen’s 13-Piece Set With Block
This set is ready for use. Utopia Kitchen offers any chef the tools they need to craft a successful meal. The blades are crafted from 420 stainless steel with polypropylene handles that stand up to a variety of acids or bases. Housed in a compact rubber wood block, each set comes with an 8-inch chef’s knife, 8-inch bread knife, 8-inch carving knife, a 5-inch utility blade, a paring knife, kitchen scissors, and five steak knives.
2. Victorinox Fibrox Straight Edge Chef’s Knife, 8-Inch
While there are many specialty knifes designed for specific kitchen tasks, the most useful and broadly applicable blade is the chef’s knife. It’s designed for chopping, slicing, dicing, mincing, and can be turned to other kitchen jobs, such as boning or carving. Crafted by the Swiss knife masters, Victorinox, the 8-inch high carbon steel blade is specially ground and laser tested for maximum efficiency and minimal resistance. It is then hafted to a textured 2-inch Fibrox handle for maximum grip security.
3. Utopia Kitchen Premium Class Stainless Steel Kitchen 6 Piece Knives Set
Utopia Kitchen brings you another great set, housed in a sleek acrylic and metal stand for compact, safe storage. While there are many materials from which to craft a knife handle, one of the most popular approaches is the single-form. Rather than hafting the blade, each of the five-piece set is crafted entirely from 420-grade stainless steel. This ensures longer use-life of each knife, and prevents bacteria from being trapped in the handles.
4. Gerber EAB Lite Pocket Knife
Gerber is a company that has offered excellent knives to many generations of men and women. This utility-style knife accepts standard utility blades and folds into a compact, useful money clip. It’s perfect for anyone on the go and fits easily in any hand. Whether you need to trim away dead wood from a prized fruit tree, open boxes, or cut wires and twine on the job, this knife is just right with a total length of only 5.1 inches.
5. SOG Key Folding Knife KEY-101
This 1.5-inch lock-back blade from SOG Specialty Knives incorporates all the features of a small utility knife with the added benefit of being disguised as a house key. While it’s perfect for small tasks—such as opening boxes, trimming ragged paper, or cutting twine and wire—it’s also an asset for self-defense. Small it may be, but it packs a punch with a high-carbon stainless steel blade that holds its sharpness.
6. Kershaw 1990 Brawler Speedsafe Folding Knife
When opened out to its full length of 7.1 inches, this knife’s snub-tip design is almost cute. But it’s all business. With a three-inch high-carbon steel blade coated in black oxide, it’s ideal for a variety of cutting tasks that require strength and sharpness. The textured nylon grip ensures ease of use in all weathers, and the glass filled handle provides the perfect weight and balance.
7. Gerber Paraframe Mini Knife
This sleek, lightweight knife is crafted from high-carbon stainless steel with a lock-back blade for added security during use. The blade measures just over two inches in length, with an overall extended length of 6 inches. A secure pocket clip completes this miniature package, allowing for easy use in a variety of tasks. This knife is an ideal compliment to many on-the-job tasks, such as box opening or cutting of twine and wire, easily transitioning for on the go or household jobs.
8.TAC Force TF-705 Series Assisted Opening Tactical Folding Knife
TAC Force offers the TF-705 Series Assisted Opening folding knife for individuals who need a knife that will cut through thick plastic and other tough substances. The spring-assisted opening mechanism pairs with a safety lock-back design to ensure optimum leverage in any task. On the handle, you’ll find a bottle opener and glass breaker in the event of an emergency—or a backyard barbecue, but the stainless steel blade is all business. Half serrated, it measures 3.25 inches in length.
9. SE KHK6320 Outdoor Tanto Knife with Fire Starter
For those who enjoy striking out into the wilderness, whether blazing a trail or exploring an established path, the Tanto knife is ideal. Crafted from a single piece of stainless steel, this isn’t a typical pocketknife. Rather, it comes with a sheath you can fasten to your belt for easy access. The three-inch blade is back-notched for stripping bark or wire covering, and fitted with a convenient thumb grip for control. Plus, this knife comes with a magnesium alloy fire-starter, to help set up camp in record time.
10. TAC Force Knives Assisted Opening Rescue Knives Black Orange EMT Tactical Knife
The TAC Force Rescue Knife is designed for use by EMTs and other rescue personnel, but makes a wonderful addition to a personal emergency kit. The 3.25-inch stainless steel blade is serrated and opens with a spring-assisted mechanism. Once in place, the blade locks to ensure maximum safety and leverage during use. As an added benefit, each knife has an additional blade for cutting seat belts, rope, or other cordage and a glass breaker in the event of an emergency.