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How To Remove Rust From Kitchen Knives in 3 Easy Ways?

If you are looking for a quick and easy way to remove rust from kitchen knives, this post will show you three different techniques that can help. You’ll learn how to properly clean your kitchen knives and prevent them from rusting again.

Related: Best Budget Chef’s Knife

Why do kitchen knives rust?

Knife rust is caused by moisture. When metal comes into contact with moisture it reacts, forming a thin coating called oxides. If there is not enough oxygen in the air, the metal does not have a chance to oxidize.

How to remove rust from kitchen knives?

Method 1:

The first method of removing rust from stainless steel knives will apply to all those knives which have just started to get rusty. Means, they have the min amount of rust on them that can be seen. This method is shared by thenestarcher in one of his videos.

What you need:

  1. Water-soaked piece of white/light color cloth or napkin
  2. A flat piece of aluminum foil

The method is simple and straightforward. Take the rusted knife blade, wipe it with the water-soaked cloth, and now take a small piece of aluminum foil and gently rub the blade with it. This is going to create a dark film. This is going to generate heat as well cause aluminum is a reactive metal.

After doing the practice for about a minute or two, wipe the knife blade with the water-soaked cloth from one end to another, and you will notice the aluminum oxide wiping off the blade.

It doesn’t really matter if you use a flat piece or crumpled piece of aluminum, it is useful both ways.

Using this method will give your knife the least amount of blade damage as compared to buffering the blade or something which can ruin the knife blade.

Method 2:

The 2nd method we are sharing here will also answer a question asked a few times, i.e. “How to remove rust from knives with baking soda?“.

This process is pretty easy and straightforward. To get started, you will need the following two things.

  1. Baking soda
  2. Water

There are several rust removal and polishing products available in the market that remove rust. However, even baking soda and water can get the job done pretty nicely.

Take a fair amount of baking soda, pour it out in a container, add a small amount of water and stir until it becomes a paste. For light rusting or newly formed rust, apply the baking soda and water paste on the blade of the knife and scrub it with a toothbrush or if the rust is a bit harder, you can apply the steel wool for scrubbing the surface with the paste.


Always be careful when using the abrasive material on the knife surface, putting pressure or pressing too hard can scratch the blade surface, so always be very soft handed while using this kind of material. Avoid the contact of steel wool and the edge of your knife, cause this can dull the edge of the knife.

To lower the risk, you can use the relatively less abrasive dish scrubbing pad. Sometimes you may need to put some pressure on certain areas of the knife blade where the rust is hard, and a slight slip can cause injury, so we highly recommend wearing a good pair of gloves while removing rust from your knives.

The method doesn’t apply to ceramic knives.

Method 3:

The rusty butcher knife.

What you need:

  1. Lemon
  2. Baking Soda
  3. Vinegar (apple cider or white)

Pour some baking soda in a cup and add a small amount of vinegar to cause the chemical reaction, mix it well and make a kind of paste.

First of all, take the lemon and rub it all over the rust. Now take a plastic sheet, set the knife on the plastic sheet and apply the baking soda and vinegar paste on both sides of the blade with the help of an old toothbrush.

Now after doing that, wrap the knife in the plastic sheet for at least an hour or an hour and a half. Later, when you unwrap the knife, you will notice that due to the chemical reaction, the rust on the blade has softened.

At this moment you can use a soft dish scrubber with some water, and gently rub the surface of the blade and take off the rust as much as possible.

If you consider necessary, apply the paste again, wrap it back in the plastic sheet, and let it be for two to three hours and repeat the process. That’s it. 😊

Why Does Stainless Steel Rust?

There are many reasons that can cause a piece of stainless steel to rust.

Some common causes include exposure to high temperatures, water, salt, and oxidation.

High temperatures can cause the metal to oxidize, which is a natural process where the metal atoms lose their electrons.

This leaves the metal very weak and the surface oxidizes to a rusty appearance.