Ceramic knives are becoming quite popular in the food world. Even with the recent popularity, many people have never seen a ceramic knife before.
For those of you who are new to ceramic knives or just want to learn more about them, here is our guide to the pros and cons of ceramic knives. After reading through this article, we hope that you will have a better understanding of what ceramic knives are, what they are used for, and the differences between ceramic knives and steel knives.
By the time you reach the end, you will be better able to decide whether or not ceramic knives are the right choice for your kitchen.
Benefits of Ceramic Knives
There are several benefits that ceramic knives have over other knives. Ceramic doesn’t rust, so you will never have rust or oxidation occur on your knives. They are also stain-resistant, so they will keep looking new after each use.
Ceramic does not hold on to odor or bacteria, so they are very easy to clean. They naturally have a low stick surface, so most food residue will simply rinse off with water. Anything that doesn’t rinse off can be wiped off with a microfiber cloth.
Ceramic knives are sharp! A lot of people are surprised when they first see a ceramic knife. They think “how is ceramic going to cut through anything?” and they may even be put off by it, but once they try one, they quickly realize how well ceramic can cut. Effortless slicing through thick and dense foods comes easy with sharp ceramic blades.
When you pair that with a comfortable silicone handle that fits perfectly in your hand and has a nice grippy, but smooth texture to it, you really feel the difference. Ceramic knives weigh about half of a steel knife of the same size, so there is less strain on your wrist when using these knives.
Ceramic knives come in a variety of colors and having color options appeals to a lot of people. Some prefer the bright colored handles with the white blades, while others prefer black on black. This is something that you don’t see in other materials.
Aside from standing out in your kitchen, they also make fantastic gifts for weddings, house warmings, and holidays (find out what other items make great gifts for bakers).
Many ceramic knife sets come in elegant packaging that is perfectly presented as a gift.
Drawbacks of Ceramic Knives
Even though ceramic knives are a great newer product, they do have some drawbacks. Ceramic knives are not “dishwasher safe.” The reason for this is that they can chip very easily if they clink against each other or anything else while the dishwasher is running.
They are also sensitive to extreme heat. It is best to wash these by hand and wipe them dry. Even with washing by hand, you may need to be careful to not let the ceramic blades hit anything hard or you may have a chunk of thin, sharpened ceramic break off.
Another potential drawback is that ceramic blades tend to come in smaller sets, so if you need a brand new full set of knives, you might not be able to find an entire set, with a knife block very easily.
Lastly, ceramic knives are not suited for cutting through bone or frozen foods.
Ceramic vs. Steel
Comparing a ceramic knife next to a steel knife of the same price, ceramic knives arrive sharper and sturdier. Ceramic blades tend to go all the way through the handle so they are much less likely to break off where the blade and handle meet.
Most ceramic knives also have hefty silicone grips which feel nice in the hand and usually look a lot nicer than the smaller plastic or wooden handles.
On the other hand, some steel knives also have blades that go all the way through the handle, reinforcing them so they don’t break off at the join. Some of the wooden handles on steel blades are crafted with beautiful woods that make the steel knives more desirable and elegant.
Steel knives perform best when they are sharpened, while the cutting edge of ceramic knives stay sharp 8-10 times longer and do not require being sharpened often, if at all.
Ceramic blades are very sharp and can be used for a number of cutting uses. They can cut through meats, cheeses, fruits, and veggies. They are also very good at peeling skins and making very thin cuts.
In the baking world, ceramic knives are useful for slicing cheese and dough, as well as skinning, slicing, and dicing fruit for pie and muffins. They are also great for cutting slices of brownies, pie, and bread after they are baked.
I personally own and would recommend these two knife sets:
These two sets match perfectly with each other and each has 4 knives, with the addition of a peeler in the Ankway set. Both sets come sharp and in attractive packaging. I have used these for a year and a half and they are still very sharp and seem very durable.
While many ceramic knife sets come in a gift-worthy black box with custom molded foam and sheaths, you may want to store them in a more accessible knife holder.
When I bought my ceramic knife sets, I chose to get a cool acrylic knife holder. Being acrylic, it is transparent, so you can see the black ceramic blades (in my case).
This knife holder is very easy to clean, because the top pops right out and you can reach all the way inside the acrylic. It also has a lot of slots with its accordion style top, so you choose how many knives you want it to hold and how to arrange them.
It is tall enough for a bread knife, so my smaller ceramic blades look dwarfed in this holder.
Knife holders have branched out beyond the normal wood block that we are all used to. A couple of other really unique knife holders to consider are:
As you can see, there are several pros and cons to ceramic knives. Ultimately the choice comes down to your personal preference. Ceramic knives are a big contender in the world of cutlery and it doesn’t look like they’ll be leaving any time soon.
Sarah is the founder of Baking Kneads, LLC, a blog sharing guides, tips, and recipes for those learning how to bake. Growing up as the daughter of a baker, she spent much of her childhood learning the basics in a local bakery.