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10 Best Japanese Chef Knife Under $100 in 2023!

Discover 10 best Japanese chef knife under $100 that can elevate your cooking experience. Our comprehensive guide showcases the top-rated Japanese knives that offer exceptional quality and durability without breaking the bank. Whether you’re a professional chef or a home cook, our list of the best Japanese chef knives under $100 has got you covered. Get ready to chop, slice, and dice with ease and precision, without overspending on your kitchen essentials.

1. Best Overall - FANTECK High Carbon Stainless Steel Knife

User Experience: “They don’t charge enough for this knife. Makes deboning easy and even works well for filleting fish. It is also beautiful, excellent craftsmanship.” Read More

  • Price: $59.99
  • Rating: 4.6
  • Pakkawood handle
  • Super sharp edge
  • Stain-resistant blade
  • You may find the handle a bit short

If you are looking for the best Damascus chef knife, FANTECK chef knife is the most popular Japanese chef knife on our list. It is a beautifully crafted chef knife that is designed & built to last longer than expectations. The ergonomically designed Pakkawood handle with acrylic rim makes this one of the most trusted butcher knives chefs use beside their routine kitchen work.

The blade is hand sharpened to 10-15degees each side which gives this chef knife a razor-sharp edge.

FANTECK knife can cut through the bulky food pretty easily without making you put extra weight and strength.

The 67 layers of Damascus steel keep the knife stay sharp for a long time. The Damascus steel is vacuum heat treated and nitrogen cooling techniques are also implemented to keep the steel fresh, sharp, and stain-resistant.

Overall, the FANTECK is the best chef knife under $100, that is solidly built with a razor-sharp edge that will last longer if properly taken care of.

2. Best Runner-up Japanese Chef Knife Under $100 - FAMCUTE Professional

User Experience: “I use this for everything now. I never knew I could cut things that thin or have that much control. Great knife, especially for the price!” Read More

  • Price: $49.99
  • Rating: 4.6
  • 60+ Rockwell hardness
  • Food doesn’t stick
  • Easy to clean
  • Knife is front heavy

FAMCUTE knives use high-quality steel so that the knives can withstand harsh treatments and last longer.

With 60+/- Rockwell hardness, the blade is made to hold the edge for long and you don’t need to sharp it pretty often.

With the clad dimple design, the food doesn’t stick to the blade and this makes it easy to wash and clean the knife.

With the pinch grip, the blade length is 8” and due to the blade design, it easy to maneuver the blade for food cutting.

The handle is made out of African rosewood that is non-slip and gives you a comfortable grip.

Overall, FAMCUTE has perfectly designed this 8-inch Japanese chef knife that will cost you well under $100 and will be a great help for you in your kitchen.

3. Best Gyuto Under $100 - Tojiro DP Gyuto Chef Knife

User Experience: “I am not disappointed! This knife was ***sharp*** out of the box and has held its edge through lots of usage with only minimal touch-up sharpening with a steel. It’s clearly well made and performs better than I had hoped.” Read More

  • Price: $$$
  • Rating: 4.8
  • Weight is about 250g
  • Stamina wood handle
  • Sharpened out of the box
  • Not rust resistant

Tojiro DP Gyuto Japanese chef knife weight is around 250g.

Tojiro DP, the best Gyuto under $100, is a VG10 standard Chef Knife with a three-layer sandwiched cladding on either side of the core.

It has a triple-riveted handle with full tang going through it.

Spine thickness Gyuto chef knife is just about 2mm coming out of the bolster and almost keeps the same thickness to about 3/4th of the spine length.

The handle is made of Stamina wood which feels comfortable and durable. It’s a bit meaty, a bit longer and angular. It has a straighter spine and belly curve, which reduces your rocking, chopping, and cutting motions.

Handle’s fit n finish is excellent. And If you have big hands, you will find it easier to use it because of its slightly more substantial and meatier handle.

When holding the knife for the first time, I mean the first time out of the box, plz check if the spine and the bolster areas are sandpaper treated, if not you need to do that yourself because there might be some sharp edges around these areas, so you can prevent yourself from getting hurt.

The knife is ready to use and sharpened out of the box. I will rate the “out of the box sharpness” a pretty decent 6 or 7 out of 10. You can sure make it extra sharp by putting your edge on it.

The general profile of the knife is not too flat and not too curvy, but you tend to go a bit higher while rocking, the point of the blade can get stuck in the cutting board.

4. Best for Beginners - Kitori Damascus Chef Knife

User Experience: “Really upped my veggie chopping game with this knife+ love it.” Read More

  • Price: $79.99
  • Rating: 4.6
  • 8-inch chef knife
  • VG-10 Super steel
  • Hand polished edge
  • Hand forged 
  • Heat treated
  • Not preciously balanced
  • Some users find the handle a bit slippery

Kitori Damascus chef knife is made of VG-10 “Super Steel”, which is the same material used in the Japanese Samurai swords.

The blade of Kitori chef knife for beginners is forged and hand polished from a single piece of steel, and this process creates a very sharp edge. The blade is tapered for slicing and chopping, and it’s not too thick so that you can handle it easily.

The handle is made of bamboo, which is durable and flexible, and the blade has a nice weight to it. It’s well balanced and easy to hold, even when you’re cutting with it.

The handle has a nice and comfortable grip to use. You don’t have to worry about slipping off the knife when you’re using it, and you can also get an excellent grip on the knife with your fingers.

Overall, this is one of the best knives for beginners that is going to last for many years, and it’ll do everything you ask of it.

5. Best 8-Inch Chef Knife Under $100 - Shun Sora Chef’s Knife

User Experience: “The lightest knife compared to others at the same price point. Holds its edge very well, very sharp.” Read More

  • Price: $84.99
  • Rating: 4.7
  • Hand-sharpened blade
  • VG-10 quality blade
  • Reasonable length
  • Plastic handle

A good chef knife is the essential kitchen knife. But what you probably don’t know is that since the Sora line from Shun, features traditional Japanese blade and handle shapes, the Sora chef’s knife would be called a Gyuto.

It is used for all the same purposes as any standard chef’s knife—all-around food preparation. But the Sora chef’s cheap Japanese chef knives have less curve than a Western chef’s knife, which means it contacts the cutting board along its length, so more food is cut per slice.

The Sora has a gentle roll off the tip compared to the large roll of a western-style knife, so the Sora needs to be lifted less, which makes cutting more effective.

6. Best Professional - DALSTRONG Chef Knife Shogun Series

User Experience: “We bought two and these knives are great. Super sharp and comfortable. We haven’t tried sword fighting with them yet, but I have no doubt they’ll hold up well there too.” Read More

  • Price: $125.99
  • Rating: 4.7
  • 8-inch chef knife
  • Hand finished edge
  • Corrosion resistant
  • 62+ Rockwell hardness
  • Not preciously balanced
  • Looses the edge quickly

The Shogun is one of the best knives that I own, and it’s definitely my favorite kitchen knife. Dalstrong makes some of the most premium knives that you can find, and the Shogun is no exception.

The blade is made of high-carbon Japanese steel that provides incredible strength and performance, and it has been honed to an incredibly sharp edge. It feels very solid in your hand, and it also has a very comfortable grip.

The handle is ergonomically designed for optimal control and comfort. It is also tapered, so it makes the handle easier to control and balance the knife when you’re working.

This is the best chef knife for serious chefs, and it’s the perfect tool for any professional kitchen.

If you’re looking for a high-performance kitchen chef knife, then buy the Shogun. It’ll definitely be worth your money, and you won’t regret it.

7. Best Damascus Chef Knife Under $100 - AUGYMER 8″ Professional Chefs Knife

User Experience: “I love the look and feel of this knife. It’s definitely helped me improve my chopping skills.” Read More

  • Price: $18.99
  • Rating: 4.5
  • Anti corrosion
  • Ergonomic handle
  • Life time warranty
  • Metal stains easily


AUGYMER 8″ Professional Japanese Chefs Knife is an excellent quality razor-sharp knife.

The blade is a quality piece of stainless steel with a perfect profile and a nice rocking curve. Nicely balanced and a very comfortable handle.

It comes with the blade guards in the box.

This is one of the best type of knife for cutting raw meat but not for fish filet nor sashimi for work.

The blade is not a real “Damascus” but patterned like one.

It has a slightly curvy blade when carefully viewed along the edge, which helps you while rocking on the cutting board.

It has a nice balanced weight, but it entirely depends on your preference.

This knife has many great customer reviews.

8. Best Budget Japanese Chef Knife Under $100 - Japanese VG-10 Chef Knife

User Experience: “This is the best knife that I have ever bought! I can cut things effortlessly.” Read More

  • Price: $$$
  • Rating: 4.7
  • VG10 Damascus steel
  • Sharp right out of the box
  • Pakkawood handle
  • Not original Damascus

XITUO is one of the best Japanese chef knives, made of VG-10 High Carbon Stainless Steel, and is an excellent chef knife for most kitchen purposes.

The knife steel is a basic 440a stainless steel that will hold the edge for a fairly long period.

The shape of the knife can be compared with Wusthof’s Classic Ikon series, but its blade is nearly 5mm thinner than Wusthof Ikon. You will not notice until you do some heavy cutting and chopping through fruits, vegetables, and meat.

It normally comes with an already razor-sharpened blade, but there are a few instances where the buyers have experienced a factory-sharped blade that will need to be sharpened as per your requirement.

I must say that the blade is NOT real “Damascus” but laser patterned for Damascus effect. We don’t expect a Damascus blade in this price range.

It has a nice glossy handle made of wood and is thick enough to feel comfortable in hand.

It is well balanced and relatively lighter in weight as compared to other cheap Japanese knives of this length.

9. Greater Goods Japanese Damascus Chef Knife

User Experience: “It’s been several years i’ve been using this knife, still works like new! Never even sharpened it! But i do take good care of it – only hand wash then dry and put into magnetic holder. Real VG10 Japanese Damascus steel!” Read More

  • Price: $59.99
  • Rating: 4.7
  • Hand Crafted Damascus Steel
  • High carbon steel blade
  • Thin blade
  • Need maintenance
  • Handle is a bit heavy

Greater Goods, hand-crafted Damascus steel Japanese kitchen knife offers the best budget Japanese Chef knives with superior quality carbon steel blade that will retain its edge for long and will serve you for longer than your expectations.

You will be surprised when you hold the knife in your hand for the first time, it is surprisingly light, almost like Shun.

After use, you must hand wash it and wipe it with a cloth or the water drops will leave marks on it.

This knife will need extra care, it’s certainly not a “use it 50 times and then put it in a dishwasher” kind of knife. You will need to use it on plastic or bamboo-made cutting boards.

The knife comes razor-sharp, and if you are “extra careful about your kitchen tools” kind of a person, then you can consider this, and if not, don’t go for it.

It has a thin blade which makes the blade lighter, and the handle is a bit heavier because of its size to fit in larger hands, so this makes it a bit back heavy.

To some users, the look and feel of this knife are way too higher than its price.

Perfectly designed for both hands use, and the handle is in perfect size if you have a large pair of hands.

This knife has very good reviews by its users, should check them as well before making your decision.

10. Best 3-Core Japanese Chef Knife Under $100 - Yaxell Mon 8″ Chef’s Knife

User Experience: “Best knife for the money. Superior cutting edge. Cuts just as well as my other knives including Miyabi and shun” Read More

  • Price: $74.99
  • Rating: 4.7
  • 3-layer blade core
  • Sand-blast finish blade
  • 61° Rockwell hardness
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Blade scratches easily

Since 1932 Yaxell has produced some very fine high-quality kitchen knives and surely this is one of them.

The blade is made from 3 layered VG10 superior-high-quality stainless steel, Clad by high-quality stainless steel from both sides.

The sandblasted finish gives it a superior quality look. The handle is made of resin and linen Canvas Micarta (FDA Approved), with two stainless steel rivets.

The knife weighs 209g, and the spine thickness is 2mm.

As out of the box, this knife has incredible ergonomics and the sharpest of blades.

It is so good with one slide cutting, no back n forth cutting.

For this kind of knife, you must have a soft, high-quality wooden board to keep your knives super sharp and for a long-lasting experience.

With this price range, you expect this quality, but according to some reviews, the knife is of much higher quality as compared to its price. (Must check out the customer reviews).

How to Choose the best Japanese chef knife under 100?

When choosing the best Japanese chef knife under $100, you need to keep in mind the following important factor.

  • Blade type
  • Blade length
  • Balance of the knife
  • Handle grip

Blade Type:

There are three main types of blades when it comes to Japanese chef knives- the single beveled edge, the double-beveled edge, and the hybrid.

The single beveled edge is more traditional and has a sharper blade. However, it is more difficult to use and requires more practice.

The double-beveled edge is easier to use and is more popular in the Western style of knives. It is not as sharp as the single beveled edge, but it is still very effective.

The hybrid is a combination of the two types and offers the best of both worlds. It is sharper than the double-beveled edge and easier to use than the single-beveled edge.

Blade Length:

The blade length of a Japanese chef knife can range from 4 inches to 10 inches. The most common blade lengths are 6 inches and 8 inches.

When choosing a blade length, you need to consider the size of your hand and what tasks you will be using the knife for. If you have a smaller hand, then you should choose a shorter knife.


When considering the balance of Japanese chef knives, you need to look at the weight of the knife. A well-balanced knife feels comfortable in your hand and is easy to control.

The weight of the knife is usually distributed evenly throughout the blade, handle, and bolster. However, some knives may feel a bit top-heavy or bottom-heavy.

Handle Grip:

When choosing a Japanese chef knife, you need to consider the handle grip. The most common material used for the grip of a Japanese chef knife is wood. However, there are other materials that can be used as well but those are not recommended.

When looking at the handle grip, you need to consider comfort and how it fits your hand. The size of the grip determines where it will sit in your hand, so keep that in mind when making a decision about which grip to choose.

Tips For Taking Care of Japanese chef knives!

If you are using a cheap Japanese kitchen knives and want to keep it running for long, there are some very important tips you need to keep into consideration that will make sure your kitchen knives are well taken care of.

Watch this short video.