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best knife set for culinary students

The 7 Best Knife Sets for Culinary Students in 2023

In the market, you’ll see many different knives, but which is the best knife set for culinary students?

To become a professional chef is a big dream of many people. But before learning new cooking you have to make sure you have all the necessary knives and tools.

I know as a beginner how difficult it is to find out the best knife set that you want to use for school or college.

Here I have picked a few models from more than a hundred different brands that you can choose without losing or breaking your bank. Let’s get started!

A Quick Summary of My Favorites

Best Overall
Mercer Culinary
  • 4-piece set
  • Forged construction
  • NSF certified knife set
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Best Premium
  • 7-piece set
  • High-carbon stainless steel blades
  • Full-tang synthetic polypropylene handles
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Shun Cutlery
  • 8-piece set
  • Corrosion and stain-resistant blades
  • Non-slip D-shaped Pakkawood handles
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budget pick
  • 7-piece set
  • High-carbon German steel blades
  • Beautiful and natural rubber wood block
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Noble Home & Chef
  • 8-piece set
  • Multiples knives and tools
  • Comes at a reasonable price
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  • 9-piece set
  • Stainless steel blades
  • Best choice for traveling
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Noble Home & Chef
  • 10-knives plus
  • Very easy to carry
  • Multiple pockets even for large knives
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01. Mercer Culinary 4-piece Starter Set

Mercer Culinary 4-Piece Starter Set
Courtesy of Amazon

Highlighted Features

  • One-piece precision forged construction
  • Triple-riveted Delrin handles
  • Full-tang blade design
  • NSF Certified
  • Lifetime warranty

Mercer Culinary 4-Piece Starter set has outstanding qualities that enable it to stand out from the rest.

It doesn’t come with many pieces, but I would say the 4 knives included are highly versatile which means that you can use them for different cutting tasks.

It is also an affordable knife set under $100 for culinary students who are on a tight budget.

All 4 knives have triple-riveted handles that are ergonomically designed to give you excellent grip when cutting.

Besides that, they feature taper-ground edges for stability and efficiency. This enables them to maintain their sharpness for a long time and it also makes them easy to sharpen.

The set is NSF certified and it comes with a lifetime warranty meaning that it is among the most reliable options on the market.

In terms of construction, it has a single-piece precision forged construction to boost strength and durability.

The blades are made of high-carbon German X50CRMOV15 material which is resistant to corrosion, rust, and discoloration. In addition, it has a full-tang design to enhance control and balance.

Enjoy More: Get the Most Sold Kitchen Knives That Never Need Sharpening

02. Wusthof 7-piece Knives for College Students

Wusthof 8957 Traveler 7-piece Knife Set
Courtesy of Amazon

Highlighted Features

  • 7-piece knife set
  • Long-lasting construction
  • Resistant to corrosion and dulling
  • Triple-riveted POM handles
  • Lifetime warranty

If you are searching for a long-lasting knife set for college students, this model will give you incredible value for your money.

This is the knife set from Wusthof which has been built for superior performance.

It comes with 7-pieces which include a 5-inch serrated utility knife, 3-inch spear point paring knife, 6-inch cook’s knife, picnic sharpener, come-apart kitchen shears, waiter’s corkscrew, and a traveler case.

The handles have a very unique design and are made from a long-lasting polypropylene (POM) material.

This material has a tight molecular structure which makes it resistant to discoloration and fading.

The blades are made of high-carbon stainless steel and are made using advanced state-of-the-art technology to enhance sharpness.

As a result, they are highly resistant to rust and corrosion. Even I noticed that they are very easy to maintain since you only need to hand-wash them after each use.

03. Shun Classic 8-piece Knife Set for Student

Shun Classic 8-piece Knife Set for Students
Courtesy of Amazon

Highlighted features

  • Handcrafted in Japan
  • Innovative design
  • 68 layers of Damascus cladding
  • Premium VG-Max steel blades
  • High-performance steel blades
  • Pakkawood handles

In terms of performance, the Shun Classic 8-Piece Japanese knife set is among the rare sets that will always give you high performance and durability.

The knives are handcrafted in Japan and are uniquely designed to provide the best precision.

Unlike many knife sets for culinary students, these ones are equipped with premium VG-Max blade steel which has 68 layers of Damascus cladding.

Due to this, the blades are extremely sharp, thin, and lightweight to give you maximum control and precision.

It also has a stylish design which sets it apart from other chef knives for starters. The tools included in the package are a 9-inch bread knife, a hollow-ground slicing knife, a 3.5-inch paring knife, an 8-inch chef’s knife, a 6-inch utility knife, a Nylon knife roll, and a Shun honing steel.

If you are searching for a best-in-class knife set with an innovative design, attention to detail, unmatched aesthetics, and performance, this model will be an ideal choice.

You can highly rely on it for peeling, chopping, filleting, slicing, dicing, boning, and paring.

04. TUO 7-piece Student Set with Luxury Packaging

TUO 7 piece knife block set
Courtesy of Amazon

Highlighted Features

  • 7 Pieces
  • Full-tang design
  • Ergonomic handles
  • Undergoes at least 3 checks before they are released

In terms of design, this set is among the most stylish knife sets under $200 for culinary students.

It comes with 7 pieces which include a 9-inch bread knife, 7-inch santoku knife, 8-inch chef’s knife, 3.5-inch kitchen paring knife, 5-inch utility knife, and 6.5-inch utility. A natural rubber woodblock is also included for convenient storage.

In terms of construction, the knives have a full-tang design to give you the best control. Apart from that, they are equipped with triple-riveted handles which provide excellent balance and maneuverability when cutting.

The blades contain special-forged high-carbon German stainless steel construction to enhance performance.

They also undergo a thorough and precise vacuum heat treatment plus nitrogen cryogenic tempering to enhance hardness, durability, and flexibility.

In order to increase the blade sharpness, the edges are hand-sharpened using the traditional 3-step Honbazuke technique. This method ensures that they are sharpened to 8 to 12 degrees on each side.

05. Noble Home and Chef Knife Set for Starter

Noble Home and Chef Knife Set for Starter
Courtesy of Amazon

Highlighted Features

  • Material: 600 denier canvas polyester
  • 8 slots knife bag
  • Padded for additional protection
  • Equipped with a shoulder strap and carrying handle
  • Adjustable straps

In case you are searching for a top-quality bag, you can use for carrying your knife set, this one will be an ideal choice.

It comes with 8 slots for knives which range from paring knives up to 18 inches. Apart from that, it has a slot for sharpening steel plus 4 spaces for tasting spoons.

A zippered pouch is also included for carrying extra tools. This chef knife bag comes with a handle plus a shoulder that makes it easy to carry. The inner part is well-padded to enhance protection and durability.

It is made using a 600 denier canvas polyester material which lasts longer than the normal fabric. It also contains a tough canvas cover flap which adds extra protection to your knives.

Inside the bag, there is a zipper, which secures the knives when traveling. Adjustable straps are also included to ensure that your knives remain in their slots. A slot for your business card or name tag is also provided for easier identification.

06. HQY 9-piece Culinary Student Knife Set

HQY 9-piece Knife Set for Students
Courtesy of Amazon

Highlighted Features

  • It comes with 9 pieces
  • Stainless steel construction
  • Storage case included
  • Excellent customer service

Whether you are a professional chef or a culinary student, this set has all the important tools you would require in the kitchen.

It comes as a set of 9 pieces which include a carving knife that you can use for carving roasts, vegetables, shellfish, turkeys, fish, and ham.

There is also a meat cleaver for carving bones and tendons, a cheese knife with a short blade for cutting cheese, and a salmon-ham slicer for cutting thin slices of ham salmon.

Other tools included are a bread knife, santoku knife, carving fork, watermelon knife, and a knife sharpener.

According to my own test, all the knives are very sharp and are able to retain their sharpness for a long time.

The knives come in a zip-up storage case where you can keep the knives when you are not using them.  This storage case also allows you to carry the knives easily when traveling.

07. Chef’s Knife Roll Bag (14 Slots) Holds 10 Knives

Chef’s Knife Roll Bag (14 Slots) Holds 10 Knives
Courtesy of Amazon

Highlighted Features

  • Up to 14 slots
  • 4 extra slots for utensils or tasting spoons
  • Features two polyester cover flaps
  • The meat cleaver pouch included
  • Sturdy metal zippers
  • Adjustable straps plus quick-release buckles

The Noble Home & Chef is one of the best knife bags for carrying many knives. It is able to accommodate up to 15 tools.

The bag features 10 slots for knives which range from paring knives up to 18-inches. There is a large pocket where you can put large tools, meat cleaver, or scissors. A removable shoulder strap and a handle are also included for easier carrying.

In terms of durability, it is made using a sturdy 600 denier canvas which enables it to withstand many years of daily use. For easier identification, it has a business card or name tag holder.

Another great thing about this knife bag is that it has 2 sturdy canvas cover flaps which add extra protection for the knives.

It also features tough metal zippers plus adjustable straps for securing the knives firmly in the bag.

Why Do Culinary Students Need a Set of Knives?

When joining a culinary school, one of the most important things you should carry is a set of knives.

Unlike the ordinary models, most knife sets for culinary students come in a cutlery case instead of a block which allows the student to carry them easily to school or to the culinary lab.

Having the best culinary student knife sets will greatly improve your cooking experience. Kitchen tasks such as chopping, filleting, slicing hard meat, removing meat from bones, mincing garlic, or dicing onions can be tedious.

Without a quality knife set, you might spend a lot of time completing such tasks. The good thing about culinary knife sets is that they are specially designed to make your learning easier since they are very sharp, versatile, lightweight, durable, and comfortable.

As a result, culinary knife sets give you confidence when learning to prepare even the most complex dishes.

Buyer’s Guide – What Features You Should Consider?

best knives for culinary school
Below are some of the key things you should check when searching for the best knives for college students.

Knives and Tools Should Be Included in the Package

You need to check how many knives and tools are included in the package. Make sure that the set has all the important knives you would require every day when preparing different foods.

The Blade Should Be Very Sharp for Effortless Slicing

A sharp blade allows you to cut even very tough ingredients without applying too much pressure. Make sure that the blades are able to maintain their razor-sharp edge for a long time.

Handles Must Be Very Comfortable for Easy Handling

The handles must provide excellent grip when cutting. They should also be comfortable and non-slip.

Your Set Should Be Affordable for Buying

You don’t need a very expensive model if you are a culinary student. Therefore, you should pick a model that is within your budget.

Must Be Considered Each Knife Weight

The weight of the knife determines your comfort and control when cutting. This means that you need to look for a model with a balanced weight. In this regard, full-tang blade design sets are the best.

Knives Should Be Easy to Clean

Some knives are made of tough materials that are not easy to clean. When comparing different models, you should look for a model that is easy to hand-wash.

Here I wrote a brief guide about the dishwasher safe kitchen knives that you may read if you want some easy cleaning knives.

Choose a Set That Is Easy to Carry

You may need to use the knives in different places. Therefore, you should consider a model that is easy to carry like those that come with a carrying case.

Warranty for Buyer Support

Before you buy any knife set, you should check if it comes with a warranty. You also need to buy from a reputable company that provides excellent customer support.


If you are searching for the best culinary student knife set, Shun Classic 8-Piece Student Set will give you the best value for your money.

It is more expensive than other sets but the 8 knives included will give you unmatched performance. For those who are on a budget, Mercer Culinary 4-Piece Starter Set will be a suitable choice as well.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the optimal chef’s knife for most cooks in 2023 either for home or restaurant use?

When it comes to the finest chef’s knife tailored for home cooks and culinary professionals in 2023, the Misen Chef’s Knife takes the cake. This 8-inch knife delivers a crucible of quality, affordability, and simplicity, thereby elevating it to the top of kitchen arsenal rankings. Misen, known for its commendable craftsmanship, offers a chef’s knife that is surprisingly lightweight. This attribute enhances its maneuverability, making it an excellent choice even for novice kitchen enthusiasts struggling with mastering knife skills. The simplicity of this knife guarantees functional versatility, making it handy for a plethora of kitchen tasks. Most importantly, the acclaim of the Misen Chef’s Knife isn’t just tied to its respectable brand name but the unrivaled blend of quality and great value it offers to users.

What is Gordon Ramsay’s Favourite knife?

Celebrity chef, Gordon Ramsay, known for his culinary prowess, is quite selective with his kitchen tools, particularly knives. According to a testimonial in MasterClass, Ramsay is partial to Henckels knives. Henckels is a renowned German brand, exuding quality and resilience. German-style chef’s knives, like Henckels, are distinguished by their robust blades, conceived with extra heft. These robust blades exhibit remarkable strength, enabling them to tackle heavy-duty tasks such as breaking chicken bones without bearing significant wear-and-tear. Certainly, if it is worthwhile for a world-class chef like Ramsay, Henckels knives earn a spot in any kitchen, be it at home or in professional establishments.

Which set of knives does Gordon Ramsay frequently utilize?

Gordon Ramsay, a star in the culinary sky, showcases incomparable expertise in food preparation. His impeccably refined skills are paired with an expanse of prized knives. In his vast collection, Henckel knives are a perpetual presence. The German cutlery company, Henckel, has been etching its name in the annals of cutlery history by consistently delivering high-caliber knives for more than three centuries. Often spotted in Ramsay’s expert hands, these knives have proven their mettle time and again. Ramsay’s premium selection certainly underscores the outstanding quality that Henckel brings to the cutting board, making it a worthwhile investment for anyone serious about their cooking.

What is the best knife set that won’t break the bank?

This answer is pending.

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