A good set of kitchen knives is an essential tool for any cook. However, simply purchasing quality knives isn't enough. If you would like to ensure that they remain sharp and effective at all times, you will need to learn how to care for them. Proper knife cleaning, care and maintenance are critical if you wish to keep your kitchen knives in tip-top condition.
Here are five kitchen knife care tips that you can follow to help you extend the useful lifespan of your knives and keep them in excellent working order for many years to come.
- Always hand-wash your knives — When it comes to cleaning knives, it can be tempting to just throw them into the dishwasher for quick and easy cleaning. However, this can actually damage the blades. The high heat and abrasive detergents that are used in dishwashing machines can dull or warp the metal that your knives were made with, resulting in a significantly shorter lifespan. Instead of subjecting them to this treatment, we strongly recommend that you hand-wash all of your kitchen knives with warm, soapy water and a soft sponge before drying them thoroughly and putting them away. Learning all about cleaning knives is the first and most important step you can take when studying knife care essentials.
- Store your knives properly — Proper storage is also essential if you would like to maintain the sharpness and longevity of your knives. Never simply toss them into a drawer once you have finished cleaning kitchen knives as they can bang against each other and become dull. Instead, you should invest in a good-quality knife block, a magnetic strip or a blade guard to provide the blades with the protection they need when not in use.
- Sharpen your knives regularly — Even the highest-quality knives will quickly become dull with regular use if they are never sharpened. Rather than waiting until they are completely blunt, it is a good idea to sharpen them regularly, which will enable you to maintain optimal sharpness at all times. You can use a honing stone or rod to sharpen your knives at home if you like. Alternatively, you can take them to a local expert who specialises in sharpening kitchen knives and knows exactly what they are doing.
- Use a cutting board — Always use a cutting board when using your knives, rather than cutting directly on a hard surface like a countertop or plate. This not only protects your knives from becoming dull but also prevents damage to your countertops. Opt for a cutting board made of wood or plastic, as glass or stone can also damage your knives.
- Use the right knife for the job — Using the wrong knife for the job can lead to premature damage or dullness. For example, if you use a serrated knife to chop vegetables, you may end up with chips on the blade. Always be sure to choose the right knife for the task at hand, whether it's a chef's knife, a paring knife or a serrated knife.
To summarise, taking good care of your kitchen knives is absolutely essential if you wish to keep them in excellent condition and extend their lifespan. By following the above five tips for knife care — including how to clean knives and how to store them properly — you should be able to ensure that your kitchen knives remain sharp, effective and safe to use for many years to come.
If it is too late to save your current set of knives, don’t panic as you are already exactly where you need to be. Just head on over to our Kitchen Knives section and you’ll find everything you need. If you have any problems with what you are looking for or want more advice on the best ways to clean knives, please feel free to contact us. We have a team of customer service specialists on hand, ready to provide you with any assistance you may need.