- 1. Chef’sChoice Trizor 15 Edge Select Electric Knife Sharpener
- 2. Chef’sChoice 320 Diamond Hone Knife Sharpener
- 3. Work Sharp Knife & Tool Sharpener
- 4. Kitchellence 3-Stage Knife Sharpener
- 5. KitchenIQ 50009 Edge Grip 2-Stage Knife Sharpener
- 6. Chef’sChoice 4643 Pronto Pro Diamond Hone Manual Knife Sharpener
- 7. Priority Chef Knife Sharpener
- 8. Work Sharp Guided Field Sharpener
- 9. BulbHead Bavarian Edge Kitchen Knife Sharpener
- 10. Chef’sChoice 130 Professional Electric Knife Sharpening Station
- 11. Sharpal 101N 6-In-1 Pocket Knife Sharpener & Survival Tool
- 12. Utopia 10 Inch Honing Steel Knife Sharpening Steel Rod
- 13. Gorilla Grip Original Premium Knife Sharpener
- 14. Work Sharp E2 Kitchen Sharpener
- 15. Smith's 50185 Jiffy-Pro Handheld Sharpener
- 16. Wusthof Precision Edge 4 Stage Knife Sharpener
- 17. SunrisePro Supreme Knife Sharpener
- 18. Presto 08810 Professional Electric Knife Sharpener
The Best Knife Sharpener
All knives dull with use and many of us like to have a collection in the kitchen that can be depended on when preparing food. Interesting that it is to know that it's estimated that 75,000 years ago prehistoric people were using methods to sharpen tools, and techniques in the modern-day still use techniques to sharpen knives to prolong their life and maintain the ability of knives to slice and cut through foods effectively.
Manual sharpening of kitchen knives can be difficult even though there are traditional ways to do it, but there are some fantastic sharpeners on the market that take the hard work out of it. We decided to test 18 of the best knife sharpeners, categorized in our familiar Unclutterer way so that you can choose the most suitable one for you that is easy to use and will continue to keep your kitchen essentials in use for years. So when your knives begin squashing food rather than cutting through it, take a look at some of our best knife sharpener choices below.
100 Diamond abrasives
1-minute first-time sharpening
10 inches length
Our best choice sharpener for knife maintenance is the Chef’sChoice 15 which promises to sharpen effectively at a 15-degree angle, where the majority of more traditional appliances for sharpening knives use a 20-degree angle. The science behind this is that the finer the knife edge is sharpened, the more likely you are to get a better cut. You will like the easy to use off/on control switch, the safety feature which means only the knife gets to meet the razor-sharp edges within the machine, and that it’s small enough to store away neatly.
3 year limited warranty
Manual instructions for 3 stage sharpening
Contains sharpening and polishing wheels
3 stage sharpening
Low noise levels
Most expensive on our list
Paring knives may take more effort to sharpen
Must be aware of which of 3 stages to use
2 stage sharpening
Straight and serrated edges
While some knife sharpeners have 3 stages, our best 2 stage machine is the Chef’sChoice 320. It has diamond wheels at stage one which carries out the sharpening, and at stage two it contains the polishing and stropping disks which finish off the knife edge to a fine finish. It has the ability to sharpen serrated knives to give arched rather than v-shaped blades and can handle larger cleaver knives and sports knives. It is a lightweight model and in case of concern regarding movement when in use, it has been designed with ergonomic feet which help it stay in one place.
Uses safe 110v power
Best knife sharpener in 2-range category
Works rapidly on a variety of knife types
Indoor & outdoor blade sharpening
40-degree knife edging
50-degree outdoor knife edging
If you are looking for a sharpener that is great for tools, indoor and out, then the Work Sharp Knife & Tool Sharpener is a good choice. It works on kitchen knives at 40 degrees and for other tools containing blades at 50 degrees. It looks like a serious piece of machinery and it does multi-task, although it’s actually very small and lightweight.
Can use on scissors
A good all-rounder for tools
Serrated or straight-edged sharpening
Looks a tad industrial
Guides need regular cleaning
Produces lots of airborne metal dust
The Kitchellence Sharpener is a neat little machine and holds sturdily to the work surface. Capable of enhancing old knives to retain their sharp edge, you use the first slot for repair, the second restores its v-shape, with the third slot being used for polishing. Recommended as an inexpensive first-time buy, it’s small and easy to store, comes with a safety glove, and can be turned for right or left-handed use.
3 stage sharpening
Not recommended for Japanese knives
Won’t work on serrated edges
Patented edge grip
Straight or serrated knives
Coarse and fine options
2 stage repair
KitchenIQ is a great product at a very affordable price. It is a 2 stage tool that has clear markers on which slot to use as knives become damaged or dull. It works on both straight and serrated edges and has a unique edge grip for sitting it on the edge of a work surface so that when the blade tip is pulled out, there is little chance of damaging the surface.
Tiny and lightweight
Small enough to store easily
Not for use on scissors
So small it might be difficult for larger hands to grip
Manual sharpening process
3 stage sharpening
15 & 20 degree edges
100% diamond abrasives
The Unclutterer manual pick is Chef’sChoice Diamond Hone Knife Sharpener which helps with a sharpening process for a variety of kitchen knives including Asian style and European tools as well as standard straight-edged and serrated edged knives. It contains diamond abrasives that are long-lasting and you will like the design with it’s clearly marked slots and easy-to-grip handle.
Complete manual control
Long-lasting diamond abrasives
Works on Asian, classic, sports and serrated knives
Doesn’t need electricity so ideal for use worldwide
Needs more strokes than recommended
Pressure needed to hold the unit down
Diamond wheel system
Straight & serrated blades
The Priority Chef made it onto our list for review as one of the 2-stage sharpeners that promise to get a razor-sharp edge including serrated and straight blades, pocket knives, and utility knives. It has a dual sharpening process with a diamond-coated wheel at slot one and a ceramic wheel at slot 2 for polishing and honing.
Achieves a chiseled blade finish
Easy to store
Must avoid using slot one with serrated knives
Pressure needed with one hand as you work with the other
Unusual 17-degree angle may not suit all needs
20-degree angle guide
25-degree honing guide
6.75 inches long
The 5 grit stages on Work Sharp Guided Field Sharpener is something that you will need indoors and out – in your workshop, on your boat, at home or even in your camping pack. This is our best use ‘on the go pick’ which is exactly that. We discovered its many uses for serrated edges, straight edges, sports knives, kitchen knives, and even fishing hooks mean this multi-use tool is a great all-rounder. It’s five stages include one coarse and one fine diamond wheel; 2-stage ceramic honing rod; one leather strop with micro-abrasive treatment.
Home, workshop. outdoor use
Hard to get used to – manual is a must-read
Not ideal if you haven’t used one before
Difficult to hold and sharpen
Dull knives need attention and we choose the Bavarian Edge as our manual edge sharpener pick. The manufacturer promises that it contours to the edge of almost any type of knife and it looks good sitting on your kitchen work surface.
Great modern design unlike others
Struggles with hard steel
Chef’sChoice 130 Professional Electric Knife Sharpening Station is one of the electric sharpeners we chose to review and it not only looks professional but does work very well to make knives easy to sharpen. It’s fairly lightweight and easy to hold with one hand whilst holding the knife with the other.
3-year manufacturers warranty
No expertise needed for use
6-in-1 multi-use sharpener
Tungsten carbide blades
3.5 inches long
2 stage sharpening
Firestarter & emergency whistle
Our pick for the best EDC sharpener (every day carry) is the Sharpal 101N which is great for those wanting something compact to take outdoors. This promises to work fantastically for those in survival, people who regularly camp out, fishermen, and general sportsmen who need sharp knives on the go. It is lightweight, which makes it a good choice and great value for money. The six uses include the two stages of knife sharpening along with a built-in firestarter, a tapered diamond rod, an emergency whistle ‘just in case’, and a built-in lanyard hole.
Sharpens on the go
Ideal for many outdoor uses
Quick edge setting
Not ideal for large knives
Can’t use on a surface for easier use
The Utopia Honing Steel Knife sharpening and honing rod is chosen as the best sharpening rod for our list. With all the fancy electronic gadgets you can buy for the home that has a chance of failing, a traditional rod will make sharpening most types of knives fuss-free and straightforward and it beats having to source a sharpening stone.
It’s a manual sharpener that many would easily think of as a chef’s choice, we believe it beats electric sharpener hands down for simplicity and ease of use and it works well on all straight-edged knives and scissors. It’s pretty easy to store at home in your cutlery draw or in your knife block.
Use in either hand
No chance of breakdown
You select the sharpening angle
Works on scissors
Some might prefer the ease of using a machine
May not work well on a serrated edged knife blade
The diamond, tungsten and ceramic slots in the Gorilla Grip Original make this strong and long-lasting. Knives in your kitchen that have become dull or blunt will benefit from treatment using this sharpener. Electric knife sharpeners are available too but as far as a manual goes, this one is ideal for in the home – and you are in charge. Simply pull the knife through each slot depending on whether you are repairing, sharpening, or polishing and your blade should be ready to cut, chop, and slice through food with ease.
Good for first-timers and pro’s
Durable rubber design
Not for serrated blades or scissors
Lots of effort needed
In our list, we have a few electric knife sharpeners that might suit but we wanted to review this one which has a slightly different look compared to the others. Work Sharp E2 Kitchen Sharpener is small and lightweight so you will like that it can easily be stored in your kitchen draw, and it will make your best knife, scissors, shears, and other blades sharp enough to make you proud in your culinary exploits!
One button control
Good enough to rate as a chef’s choice
Touch up & polish between sharpening
Smith’s 50185 Jiffy-Pro Handheld Sharpener is built for performance. It’s been designed specially to pop in your pack whether you’re fishing, camping, working outdoors, or hunting. The Smith’s was our best handheld choice and you can get even some garden blades and scissors honed in a ‘jiffy’.
Some might prefer a more heavy-duty compact
Poor quality outer
The Wusthof Knife Sharpener is perhaps a good chef’s choice, or at least for those who have a selection of standard kitchen and professional Asian style knives at home. It boasts a four-stage knife sharpening process which actually consists of two slots (one coarse, one fine) for edging at 14 degrees which is great for standard knives, then slides the protective cover across to reveal a further two slots for Asian or Japanese knives, this will edge at a neat 10 degrees. We think this is a great little tool and, after being in production for 10 years, it’s still a very popular choice.
Coarse slots for sharpening and repair
Ceramic rods for honing
Rollers don’t last long with regular use
Not great for repairing/sharpening cheap knives
The small form factor choice had to be the SunrisePro Supreme. We thought it looked far too cute and compact to be able to do a good job but in reality, size doesn’t matter in this case. You might like to know that it doesn’t need lots of pressure like some manual knife sharpeners, bear in mind more pulling through and less pressure is better than being heavy-handed and trying to save time.
Locking suction cups for surface grip
Need to be careful and accurate
Not sure where to put freehand
Suction lever feels a bit flimsy
Adjustable blade selection
Edges Santoku knives
120 volts power
The best value kitchen knife sharpener on the Unclutterer review list is the Presto 08810 Professional. Bearing in mind, the best value doesn’t mean cheap in our opinion the three-stage sharpening process gives home and professional kitchen knives with varying degree edges a razor-sharp finish. This great value tool also will sharpen Asian style knives and Santoku knives, and with blade guides, you will like not having to guess the sharpening angle.
Change the sharpening angle
Thick knives to Santoku blades
No batteries required
Suction cups don’t hold very well
Features To Consider With Knife Sharpeners
Dull knives are pretty useless! How many times have you reached for the knife you only bought a short while ago only to find that it won't cut through your favorite cut of meat? More of us than you think are guilty of trying to squish our way through a tomato or a piece of stubborn fruit with a blunt knife and rather than throwing them in the trash, there's a way to save them and give our favorite knife collection a longer life. Stop hurting your knives (and risking your fingers) and take a look at our review of the best knife sharpeners with our brief guide below to help you make the right decision.
There's nothing like being able to choose the best knife sharpener but you don't always need to get a professional chef's choice that costs a fortune just so that your knives work as they should. So what basics do we look out for when choosing a knife sharpener? A few pointers are below.
Easy To Use
Knife sharpening, even when using a promising looking tool, isn't foolproof. If you are looking for a knife sharpener that is easy to use on your blades, whether they are for the home kitchen or for use in your workshop then an electric sharpener is easy to use. That said, you MUST always read the manual and concentrate on what you are doing because it's all too easy to shave off more from the blade than you need to.
A manual sharpener requires some skill and, again, especially for first-timers you must read the manual. Because you have more control over the pressure exerted with a manual sharpener it's easier to ensure that you don't remove too much metal from the knife blade.
With any sharpener, the focus is the key to not thinning out the blade too much. If you do manage to get it wrong then your favorite knife might become irreparable and end up in the trash. So to reiterate, always read the manual and get the right advice from people that might be experienced with the type of sharpener you intend to use, or the manufacturer, and read reviews which often come with some helpful tips.
Types Of Knives
Know your knives, here are just a selection of knives that most of us have in our collection:
Chef's knife - A long and broad blade which is finely pointed with its widest point at the 'heel' ( the metal blade part closest to the handle ). It has a straight edge.
Paring knife - Strong but delicate for peeling, slicing and chopping a paring knife is small and slim, and also short with a straightedge and a fine point.
Bread knife - Just as it says in the title, usually used to 'saw' through bread loaves. It has a serrated edge with a blunt point and slices bread rather than squashing it as a straight-edged knife would.
Carving knife - A fairly long blade, usually the longest in the kitchen, which is finely pointed with a narrow width. It has a straight edge and slices foods like meat thinly.
Boning knife - From a tapered fine point back to a slim blade this usually is a fairly short knife with a very sharp straight edge. It is fairly rigid for using to separate bones cleanly from meat. It has a similar shape to filleting knives which is slightly more flexible as they are designed for use on more delicate bones of fish.
Santoku knife - A Japanese native knife originally, this is used for dicing, mincing, and accurate cutting. There may be a dimpling effect across the straight blade. They are long and fairly tapered at their point so it can be directed more precisely.
There are many including different types of fruit knives, tomato knives, cleavers, and of course cutlery knives. Above is just a quick guide on those types you might find when you have bought a knife collection.
Safety goes without saying. Whilst you are researching a manual or an electric knives sharpener, take a quick look to see if there are any additional safety features, or indeed if there are warnings in place that you have to be aware of. Some handheld models may have a finger guard, some manufacturers may also recommend (and hopefully supply) a protective glove or mask for use with your new tool.
Remember that an electric knife sharpener, a manual one, and a whetstone will all produce metal shards and dust. Sometimes you might choose to use the tool outside until you get used to how much metal dust is produced.
Always clean the sharpener following manufacturers' instructions, wipe the newly treated knife with a damp cloth before use, and more importantly stay focused when using such tools to avoid injury.
Some knife sharpeners have been designed with stability in mind which helps to avoid slipping and injury during use. Most have suction cups that adhere to the work surface to help it stay in place while you work, although you still have to hold the machine down while you work as they can still show some element of movement even if they do seem 'stuck' to the worktop. Nobody wants a loss of control while completing the task of getting a sharp knife edge. There is a small number that can be fixed to a surface, and another few that have been designed with locking suction cups.
If you are concerned about the stability of the machine that's normal, have a look at any videos the manufacturer has posted in an advert or if anyone has reviewed the product in depth.
Types Of Knife Sharpeners
The first thing to know if you are a budding culinary whizz is that knives quickly become dull and damaged, meaning chopping, slicing, and cutting fruits, vegetables and meats is a chore. Here are a few things about the different knife sharpeners that you can get for the home or professional kitchen, or even if you have a knife collection needed when outdoors.
Electric And Manual
Unlike a sharpening stone, as you will read below, manual and electric sharpeners use a v-shaped guide which is designed to carve almost a new edge to knives. The angle is usually set, which takes the guesswork out for you, and you pull your knife through the slot in one direction a number of times. The abrasive wheels effectively sharpen the blade for you. There are mainly 2-stage or 3-stage tools that repair, sharpen, hone, and polish. A word of warning though, if you have spent hundreds of dollars on a knife then these types of sharpener tools should be avoided. In this case, use a professional or invest in a professional method such as a rod or whetstone.
Sometimes referred to as honing steel, a sharpening rod is designed to give blades a sharp edge and are simply a rod (as the name suggests) with a handle to grip. They don't necessarily sharpen a knife blade but will correct the edge to restore the v-shape. It is drawn down the edge of the blade and it removes material from the blade. They can also smooth out the edge of the blade after it has been treated with a whetstone.
Sometimes called Japanese waterstones, or oilstones, a whetstone essentially corrects and sharpens the existing blade on a knife unlike different types of sharpeners which create a new edge. The sharpening stone uses oil or water to activate the sharpening surface on the stone. It is considered a manual sharpener but a whetstone does take practice to get the method just right.
Knife Sharpener FAQ
Q: Do knife sharpeners really work?
Sharpening devices do work, some better, some worse, otherwise there wouldn't be so many manufacturers competing for your custom.
Q: What is the best way to sharpen knives?
The best way to sharpen knives is dependent on what you are looking for - a quick fix? a professional finish? a time saver? It's up to you on what you want to achieve, how much time you want to spend on the task, and how much you want to spend. There are DIY ideas, traditional methods, and machines that all do the job in a different way.
Q: Do knife sharpeners ruin knives?
In reality, even the best electric or manual sharpener or even traditional tools can ruin knives if they are used in the wrong way. Always find out how to sharpen blades before starting, and focus on the task in hand. Putting additional pressure on when it's not needed, or sometimes not enough, or trying to rush the job can damage blades beyond repair.
Q: How many times can you sharpen a knife?
Strictly speaking, you can sharpen a knife too frequently whilst not doing it regularly enough will mean your knives become dull and lifeless. Sharpening is recommended a few times a year if you are honing and polishing them on a regular basis. Look at the recommendations from the manufacturer, usually outlined in the manual, on how many times you should be repairing and polishing your knives - it can depend on the type of knife, the material it's made from, and how frequently it is used.
Q: Do you push or pull when sharpening a knife?
This depends on the method you are using. Get proper advice before sharpening whether you are using an electric or manual method.