When two knives, a stainless steel knife, and a ceramic knife, are placed side by side on a kitchen table, and you’re asked to make your pick, your mind will probably be like, “Mmmh! Which one of these is the better blade? I like the stainless steel knife, but this ceramic knife’s game seems to be on a whole new level!” In the end, you may end up in a state of confusion. This is precisely what we want you to avoid.
So, the question we’re addressing our minds today is; are ceramic knives better than stainless steel knives? Or said in the other way, are stainless steel knives better than ceramic knives? Deciding on the best pick among the two is, for the most part, dependent on personal preferences.
The performance of both knives is impeccable, with the main difference being the material used in making the blade. While the Stainless steel blade is made up of metals such as iron, carbon, and titanium, a ceramic knife is composed of hard and tough ceramic, usually zinc oxide.
There are benefits and drawbacks attached to both knives, all of which are material factors that may inform a buyer’s choice to purchase or refrain from buying one type over the other.
Ceramic knives are very hard. Scientists would tell you that the material used to make the blade is regarded as the second hardest, right after diamond. It’s perfect for slicing and cutting vegetables, fruits, and herbs.
Courtesy of its lightweight, thin, sharp blade, making clean, precise cuts on your veggies and fruits becomes part of your daily activities, leaving you feeling like a kitchen god.
The hard blades are also incredibly sharp. This sharpness is maintained for a long time, and when it becomes dull, manufacturers provide free sharpening services.
These knives do not come cheaply due to the quality of material used to make these razor-sharp blades. There are no low-quality knives available for low-end consumers. Price ranges from about $30- $ 200.
Hard as they come, ceramic knives are also known to be brittle and very fragile. It is not uncommon for a ceramic blade to chip or break when used on hard food produce. This casts a dark shadow over its allure.
Where your knife becomes dull, sharpening it at home could be disastrous. You may end up disfiguring it, so it’s best not to.
These knives are not dishwasher friendly, and hands should do the cleaning. With a simple rinse, its non-porous nature prevents it from transferring food odor or taste to other foods.
- Impeccable performance
- Hard and razor-sharp blade.
- Extraordinarily sharp, and its sharpness may last during its lifespan.
- Thin and lightweight
- Easy to clean by hands
- No rust or corrosion
- High-quality ceramic knives are a bit cheaper when compared to high-end stainless steel.
- Brittle and very fragile.
- Unsuitable for deboning or cutting through hard or frozen food products.
- Sharpening the blades is complex, and it may chip in the process.
- It poses a danger to the user since specks of ceramic may fall into food in cases where it chips or breaks off.
- Not dishwasher friendly.
Stainless Steel Knives
Stainless steel cutters comprise materials such as; carbon, titanium, iron, and other metals. They come in different blade sizes, compositions, and styling. Due to the metals’ density, they tend to make the knives a tad bit heavier than ceramic blades.
Unlike their peers, these excellent knives are versatile. You can use them to cut, chop, slice and debone food produce, among other tasks. To top it all, these kinds of knives are durable.
However, please don’t take this to mean they are impervious to rust and corrosion. Although sharp, stainless steel knives become dull after a while, and sharpening can be done by employing whetstones, honing rods, etc.
Additionally, less attention and maintenance are needed and can be stored on a stone block.
- Has thick and strong blades with sharp edges.
- Easy to sharpen and maintain
- You can store it on a magnetic knife holder
- Have good knives sold under $200.
- It does not retain its sharpness like ceramic cutters
- Weighs more than the ceramic cutters.
- With time it corrodes and gets rusts.
Differences between Ceramic and Stainless steel knives
Composition of ceramic and stainless steel is by far the main distinguishing factor. A consumer needs to decide whether they will use a blade made up of ceramic or a series of metals.
Ceramic blades are made up of Zirconium oxide. The production consists of a process of dry-pressing zirconium powder and firing them solid-state sintering.
They are then sharpened to provide a sharp knife. On the flip side, Stainless steel knives are comprised of metals such as; carbon, titanium, iron, and other materials. Its production includes series of forging, cooling and sharpening, among others.
Sharpness and sharpening
Stainless steel knives are usually extremely sharp when unboxed but become dull upon continued usage. Sharpening the blades is easy and straightforward. With the help of whetstones, sharpening rods, and a honing rod, the knife re-emerges brand new.
On the other hand, Ceramic knives maintain their sharpness for a long time. Their edge retention is long. Still, in instances where it dulls, sharpening the blade is difficult and impossible to perform at home. Its sharpener includes diamond-dust coated sharpening wheels, or better yet, consider taking it to the manufacturer.
Ceramic knives are more durable than stainless steel, all thanks to the blade composition. These knives are impeccably durable, retain their edges, sharpness, and neither rust nor corrode. Nevertheless, when mishandled, they can either chip or break.
Durability doesn’t only work for ceramic. Stainless steel knives are also durable since the materials used to make the blades are also hard. However, in rare cases, the blades can get rust. Although the ceramic knives are more durable, these stainless steel knives do not break when they are dropped, nor do they chip or break when mishandled.
Ceramic knives are intended explicitly for specific purposes, such as cutting and slicing vegetables, fruits, and herbs. They are not multipurpose and should NEVER be used for hard or frozen foods.
This is not the same for steel blades, as you can use them to cut through almost anything. Moreover, they come in different quality, size, composition, and styling. To end it all, a buyer should not go for a ceramic cutter when looking for a multifunctional knife.
The cost of ceramic knives is higher than stainless steel. They only come in high-quality material, unlike the steel ones where the more quality, the more the pricing. One can find good steel knives for as low as under $200.
Knives relatively require attention to maintain their edges for a longer time, but ceramic knives need more attention than steel cutters.
Ceramic knives come with a lot of conditions to keep them safe. They include; do not cut through hard or frozen foods, do not drop them, do not put them in the dishwasher, and avoid direct contact with steel plates.
With stainless steel knives, one must avoid rusting and corrosion by preventing contact with hot water or surfaces. Plus, it requires regular sharpening.
Eventually, debating which kind of knife is better than the other is not an exercise in futility. As much as everything boils down to personal preference, the debate is a fundamental knowledge-sharing platform that influences the personal choice of what is best for someone. Better still, why not get both knives? After all, wouldn’t they be a great addition to your kitchen arsenal?
Q1. Are ceramic knives more durable than stainless steel knives?
Surprisingly yes, when properly maintained. The composition of the blade, edges, and sharpness retention make it the most durable. Moreover, they neither corrode nor rust. Even so, they can chip or break when mishandled. This is different with stainless steel cutters, where as much as they are considered durable, they are prone to rust and sharpness, and edges do not last long.
Q2. Do chefs use ceramic knives?
When observing cooking shows on the TV, one can’t make out a ceramic cutter from a steel knife. Chefs like Whitney Miller and Jennifer Behm, both winners of Masterchef USA, are seen to be using ceramic blades in food preparation.
Q3. Do ceramic knives cut skin?
A knife is a knife, whether steel or ceramic can cut skin when not used with care. Always be careful when using a sharp blade.
Q4. Do ceramic knives get dull?
Rarely. With extensive use over time, they become blunt, and it’s the user’s task to ensure that it’s well sharpened. Plus, keep in mind a dull knife is dangerous.
Q5. Are ceramic knives worth it?
It depends on the user’s preferences. If it’s a matter of sharpness and edge retention, they are worth every penny, but if you consider the versatility and high levels of maintenance they require, then it’s the other way around.