Wüsthof Classic 4-Piece Steak Knife Set is the winner.
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best steak knives
Credit: Williams Sonoma

Making a great dinner requires several moving parts, including the right cutting boards, good sheet pans, and of course a great set of knives. A dull knife is a cook's worst enemy. Using brute force to cut meat means not only a raised risk of injury but also losing those flavorful juices while you struggle to slice through. The same rule for chef's knives goes for dining utensils—the better the steak knife, the better the dining experience will be for you and your guests.

Whether you've seared the perfect rib eye or roasted the ideal pork loin, using a sharp set of steak knives will make the meal that much more enjoyable. With high-carbon stainless steel blades and strict quality standards, Wüsthof's Classic 4-Piece Set earns our top spot. Read on for some of our favorite steak knife sets to buy right now.

Our Top Picks

Best Steak Knives
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Best Overall: Wüsthof Classic 4-Piece Steak Knife Set

While there are certainly less expensive steak knives available, Ina Garten's favorite knife brand holds true in this category for a reason. Wüsthof has been making cutlery for 200 years, and its Classic line includes laser-cut blades made from high-carbon stainless steel—so sharp there's no need for serrations. This set includes four 4.5-inch German blades, and the Solingen name on the side indicates it meets the strictest quality standards. The classic triple-riveted handle is full-tang and contoured for a comfortable grip while slicing through steak, pork chops, or any tough meat. 

The full bolster provides protection for your hand while slicing, and the handle is designed from a highly durable material that resists fading and discoloration. As with any premium kitchen knife, handwashing is recommended for these to remain in the best condition.

To buy: Wüsthof Classic 4-Piece Steak Knife Set, $290 at amazon.com, surlatable.com, or wusthof.com

Best Steak Knives
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Best Serrated: Victorinox Swiss Army 8-Piece Set

With thousands of five-star ratings, this lightweight, no-frills set from Victorinox gets high praise across the board. The serrated stainless-steel blades and textured handle allow for easy gripping and slicing, and they can handle the dishwasher in a pinch. 

To buy: Victorinox Swiss Army 8-Piece Steak Knife Set, $31 (originally $55) at amazon.com or walmart.com

cuisinart serrated knives
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Best Budget Serrated: Cuisinart Triple Rivet 6-Piece Set

Cuisinart's affordable steak knives easily compete with our overall best picks, according to reviewers. Though they won't hold up quite the same way higher-end tools will, home cooks will get great use out of these knives with proper care.

For a serrated-edge knife, Cuisinart's triple-rivet collection has a high-carbon stainless steel blade with a standard 4.5-inch length. It's one of Amazon's top-selling steak knife sets, and with a $15 price tag, it's no surprise users feel they've gotten the best deal. Home cooks like them for everything from carving rotisserie chicken to slicing tomatoes.

To buy: Cuisinart Triple Rivet Collection 6-Piece Steak Knife Set, $15 at amazon.com, bedbathandbeyond.com, or wayfair.com

messermeister steak knives
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Best Budget Straight-Edge: Messermeister Avanta 4-Piece Set

The Messermeister Avanta set keeps pace with premium knives as well and is one of the best buys for straight-edge knives. The knife is one full piece of high-quality German steel that resists rust and corrosion but holds up well to sharpening when needed. It has near-perfect ratings and users find them to be the best of both worlds in price and features. One shopper explained that although they own several high-end kitchen knives, they wanted a more affordable steak knife.

To buy: Messermeister Avanta 4-Piece Steak Knife Set, $60 at amazon.com

Best Steak Knives
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Best Value: Henckels 8-Piece Steak Knife Set

For a quality brand with a full-size set, this Henckels set with eight serrated steak knives has excellent ratings. The larger serrations cut through any food easily with little force, and the triple-rivet handles ensure a sturdy hold for the long run. For home cooks looking to use a solid set of steak knives without breaking the bank, Henckels tools are a great option and come with a lifetime guarantee, too.

To buy: Henckels Triple-Rivet 8-Piece Steak Knife Set, $39 at amazon.com, bedbathandbeyond.com, or wayfair.com 

Best Steak Knives
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Best Modern Set: Material Table Knives

Material Kitchen's new table knives are designed to address a common kitchen problem: proper storage. The maple holder stands upright on the countertop or lies horizontally in a drawer to protect the blades (as well as yourself) from any wear and tear. They look great on the counter, at the table, and the grippy matte handles make it easy to slice with the Germain stainless steel blades. 

Just like Material's chef's knife (which F&W editors love), these straight edge-knives are designed to work with the brand's sharpener, which means the blade will keep as long as you care for it at home. Even better, the knives come in mixed colors or in full sets of Material's signature hues: deep (evergreen), persimmon (light orange), morel (beige), and glazed (light grey).

To buy: The Table Knives (4-piece with block), $90 at materialkitchen.com

Best Steak Knives
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Best for Table Settings: Misen Serrated Knives

Misen's serrated blades are comfortable and affordable if you're looking to outfit your table for hosting family and friends for dinner. Hundreds of Misen users have complimented the brand's usefulness and great price. Misen also makes our favorite paring knife, so it's no surprise they're a top choice for steak knives as well.

To buy: Misen Steak Knives (4 or 8--Piece set), $20 per knife at misen.com

Best Steak Knives
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Best Durable Set: Henckels 8-Piece Stainless Steel Set

Over 2,500 five-star reviews rave about this one-piece stainless steel Henckels set. The serrated edge won't need sharpening, and home cooks have even referred to the blades as the best tomato knife. The stainless steel handle looks sleek for table settings but makes it easy to store in the utensil drawer as needed.

Though we'd never advise putting steak knives in the dishwasher regularly, if you're able to dry these blades quickly, rust should be easy to avoid.

To buy: Henckels 8-Piece Stainless Steel Set, $45 (originally $60) at amazon.com or bedbathandbeyond.com

Best Steak Knives
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Best Laguiole-Style: Trudeau, Laguiole en Aubrac

Any home cook on the hunt for steak knives will come across "Laguiole" in product results. The name refers to a small village in France where the Laguiole-style knife was first produced and is known for impeccable quality. Though many "Laguiole-style" knives are still manufactured in France, the name is not trademarked and they can be made anywhere. The high-end, more traditional style is often labeled as Laguiole En Aubrac (4-piece for $400) and will usually include olivewood handles, a straight blade, and is made in France. 

The more accessible Laguiole styles are usually serrated. Jean Dubost trademarked a more affordable version of the Laguiole, with the classic triple-riveted handle and a variety of finishes for the classic blade shape. Top-rated Laguiole-style tools include the Trudeau brand and Hailingshan knives, which are both inspired by the traditional knife and work incredibly well for an affordable price. 

To buy: Trudeau Laguiole 6-Piece Knife Set, $54 (originally $100) at amazon.com; Laguiole En Aubrac 4-Piece Knife Set, $400 at williams-sonoma.com

Best Steak Knives
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Best Classic Steakhouse Knives: Viking Professional

Add a rustic element to your kitchen table with these steakhouse-style knives. The restaurant-quality serrated edge and stain-resistant handles are full-tang for a balanced hold. The blade is 18/10 German stainless steel that will resist corrosion and easily slice through poultry or beef. The knives are high quality for an affordable price.

To buy: Viking Professional 6-Piece Steak Knife Set, $80 to $90 (originally $100) at amazon.com, surlatable.com, or bedbathandbeyond.com

Best Steak Knives
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Best Japanese Set: Shun Classic

Crafted in Japan, Shun knives are top quality and coveted by chefs and home cooks alike. The VG-MAX "super steel" blade on this set is clad on each side with layers of stainless steel, giving them a Damascus-style beauty and quality. The pakkawood handles resist moisture and have a comfortable grip. These "super steel" knives are worthy of professional kitchens.

If you need more than four, the set of six comes with a bamboo storage case. Ideal for gifting or protecting those very sharp blades in your kitchen at home.

To buy: Shun Classic 4-Piece Steak Knife Set, $330 at williams-sonoma.com or surlatable.com; 6-Piece Set with Box, $490 at williams-sonoma.com

Best Steak Knives
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Best Luxury German-Style: Wüsthof Ikon

To take the step (or two) up from the Wüsthof Classic means going for the Classic Ikon set, a balanced, beautiful set honed from a single piece of high-carbon steel that can be sharpened the entire length of the blade. These knives are so sharp, users recommend avoiding glass or ceramic cutting boards with them. The Ikon knives are precision-forged in Germany (the company is owned by the seventh generation of the namesake knifemakers) for the highest quality from tang to bolster to blade.

To buy: Wüsthof Classic Ikon 4-Piece Set, $425 at amazon.com, williams-sonoma.com, or crateandbarrel.com

Best Luxury Japanese-Style: Shun Premier 4-Piece Steak Knife Set

For an even more special purchase, the top-of-the-line Shun set is unparalleled for sharpness and edge retention. The VG-10 stainless steel clad has 32 layers of high-carbon stainless steel for Damascus-style strength and durability. The hammered finish on the blade reduces drag while cutting and looks beautiful at the table on top of it all. The pakkawood handles reduce friction, provide the perfect grip, and are naturally antimicrobial. The set is also available in Shun's brand new blonde collection, available exclusively at Williams Sonoma.

To buy: Shun Premier 4-Piece Steak Knife Set, $440 (originally $624) at amazon.com, williams-sonoma.com, or crateandbarrel.com

ZWILLING J.A. Henckels Zwilling Accessories Steak Knife Set
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Best for Gifting: Zwilling 8-Piece Steak Knife Box

This Zwilling set comes in an attractive wooden presentation box, so gifting is as easy as throwing on a bow. The eight-piece set is top to bottom high-carbon stainless steel, made with professional-grade design and materials. The serrated blades will hold their sharpness for longer than traditional knives. The thin handles look great at any table setting, and even better—shoppers can catch the set while it's on sale for just $85. Give it as a wedding gift, Christmas gift, or birthday gift.

To buy: Zwilling 8-Piece Steak Knife Box Set, $85 (originally $160) at target.com, macys.com, or zwilling.com

Best Steak Knives
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Best Lifetime Guarantee: Cutco Table Knives

These nifty knives are just as good at spreading butter as they are at slicing steak. Cutco has a great reputation for longevity and a customer-friendly guarantee—you can send them back to be sharpened at any time. The 440A high-carbon steel blades are shorter than the usual 4.5-inch steak knife style but can cut through all types of food, and the thermo-resin handle can hold up to the dishwasher. Home cooks have owned Cutco knives for 20 or 30 years, with some buying multiple sets to keep for all purposes. The dishwasher-safe tray is great for storing in a drawer or on the counter.

To buy: Cutco Steak Knives (4-piece with dishwasher-safe storage try), $200 at amazon.com 

Factors to Consider When Buying Steak Knives

In order to invest in the correct steak knife, you'll need to take stock of a few things. Note how and when you normally need steak knives: Do you host big groups often? Do you eat meat regularly? Would you have the bandwidth to hand-wash utensils as needed? Is there enough counter space or drawer space for storage in your kitchen? All of these questions can determine which set of blades is right for your dining table.

If you're looking for a sturdy set that's affordable without the hassle of sharpening them regularly, a serrated blade set is probably best. You might want a thinner handle that's Laguiole-style or a heavier wooden handle option that echoes the classic steakhouse vibe. If you're in need of fewer steak knives to use often on fine cuts of meat, a luxury straight-edge upgrade might be right for you. If you'd like something you can toss in the dishwasher in a pinch (though, generally, this should be avoided), a full solid steel set is a good idea to prevent warping or fading on the handles. The grade of steel will also vary between brands and collections, so note if you'd rather the highest-carbon steel offering or are fine with a classic, accessible stainless steel that you won't fear dropping on the floor.