The minority of people in the world are left-handed, which means we don’t get a lot of tools that make life easy for us. If you’ve ever had to use a chef’s knife in the kitchen and had trouble slicing and dicing and you almost cut your finger off as a result of struggling, then you may be using a knife that is better suited to right-handers. A chef’s knife is an all-purpose workhorse because you can use it for slicing and chopping meat, fish, and vegetables equally well.
Luckily, some companies do make tools like chef knives for lefties, but how do you know you are buying quality? Items like a left-handed chef knife are generally pricier than those for right-handed people.
We look at why you need a knife that’s suitable for lefties and how to choose the best chef knife for left handed people like you. Plus, we’ve also done the hard work and included the best left-handed cooking knives to make life easy for you. Like a few other home and kitchen tools like a left handed can opener or a left handed rotary cutter, you will have a smaller range of options, but they do exist.
Keep in mind that there are two types of blades available for chef knives – single bevel and double bevel. The latter is known as the western-style and is what we’re going to look at in this article. We’ll tackle the best single bevel Japanese knives separately. We’ll also cover left handed bread knives that have serrated bladed instead of beveled ones.
Table of Contents
- 1 In a Hurry? Here Are Our Top Picks for Left Handed Cooking Knives…
- 2 Do Left Handed People Need Special Knives?
- 3 Best Left-Handed Chef Knives
- 3.1 Wusthof Classic 8-Inch Cook’s Knife
- 3.2 Shun Kanso 8-Inch All Purpose Japanese Gyuto Style Chef’s Knife
- 3.3 Shun Classic 6-Inch Chef Knife
- 3.4 DALSTRONG Chef Knife – 8″ – Shogun Series – Damascus – Black G10 Handle
- 3.5 Henckels Classic 8-inch Professional Chef Knife
- 3.6 IMarku 8-inch Full Tang Chef Knife
- 3.7 NOBOX All Purpose 8-inch Chef Knife
- 3.8 Aroma House Chef Knife Professional 8-Inch Kitchen Knife
- 4 How to Choose the Best Left Handed Chef Knife
In a Hurry? Here Are Our Top Picks for Left Handed Cooking Knives…
Wusthof Classic 8-Inch Cook’s Knife
- Chopping and cutting meat, fish, vegetables, fruit & herbs
- Synthetic handle, riveted
- Forged and tempered to 58° Rockwell
- Also available in 6 and 10 inches
Shun Kanso 8-Inch All Purpose Japanese Gyuto Style Chef’s Knife
- Slicing vegetable & fruit, meat & cheese
- Tagayasan wood handle
- Heritage finish AUS10A blade 16° bevel
BEST BUDGET PICK
Henckels Classic 8-inch Professional Chef Knife
- Chopping, mincing, slicing and dicing
- Triple riveted Pakkawood and plastic composite handle
- Forged satin finish blade
Do Left Handed People Need Special Knives?
In many cases, lefties do need special knives that are designed for them because of safety reasons. If you use a knife that is intended to be used by a right-handed person, then there are two features that can trip you up as a lefty. The main one is the blade’s bevel and the other is the shape of the handle. These are the two main differences between left and right-handed knives.
Double Bevel Knife
A knife that has a double bevel or double edge means there is an inward angle on both sides of the blade. The knife is sharpened to have a 20 to 30-degree angle equally on each side.
Most Western knives are double bevel. Double edge knives are also sometimes called ambidexter knives because both left-handed and right-handed people can comfortably use these.
These knives are also generally easier to use, stay sharper for longer, and are versatile because you can dice, slice, and cut with them.
However, some double bevel chef’s knives have an asymmetrical handle that’s more curved on one side than the other to properly fit inside the palm of a right-hander’s hand. Another issue could be that a part of the upper blade near the handle may protrude a little and may feel uncomfortable to a lefty but not to a righty.
Single Bevel Knife
The angle (or bevel) of the knife’s blade on a single bevel knife is on the right side when the handle of the knife is pointed toward you and the edge is pointed downward. The blade is flat on the left. If it sounds a lot like the difference between left-handed and right-handed scissors, that’s because it is very similar.
So if you use a knife with a right-sided bevel in your left hand, you can’t really cut, slice, or dice because you are using the knife in the opposite direction and have to unnaturally angle the blade in order to cut straight down and maybe even apply a lot of pressure. This is uncomfortable and you can injure yourself seriously too.
Most Japanese knives are single edged. These knives are also much sharper than a double bevel knife. They can slice food with precision, but they aren’t easy to sharpen or maintain.
So if you – as a lefty – were to use a single bevel knife, you need to buy one that is specifically made to be used in your left hand.
Best Left-Handed Chef Knives
Wusthof Classic 8-Inch Cook’s Knife
The Wusthof Classic 8-Inch Cook’s Knife is the best-known knife from the stable of the world-renowned knife brand. It is manufactured entirely in Germany in precision-tuned factories and finished by expert craftsmen. This knife is a proper workhorse.
Steel, carbon, chromium, molybdenum, and vanadium are combined to create Wusthof Classic blades. The material mix is designed to maximize hardness, durability, and corrosion resistance. Polyoxymethylene is used for the handle, which is an extremely durable synthetic material.
When it comes to performance in the kitchen, Wusthof Classic knives are unsurpassed. The sharp and shiny edge, comfortable handle, and durable construction make it ideal for professional use. The style is traditional, with a black handle, three rivets, and an exposed tang. The curved wide-belly handle makes it easy to rock back and forth for mincing and chopping and the full bolster ensures complete safety using a pinch grip.
Durable with an extremely sharp edge.
Well-balanced and has a nice heft for heavier cutting jobs.
8” blade is versatile and a workhorse.
Easy to rock the knife up and down on a cutting board.
Completely safe for a pinch grip.
The red logo sticker on the handle will start to peel after some time.
May feel a bit heavy for beginners.
Shun Kanso 8-Inch All Purpose Japanese Gyuto Style Chef’s Knife
The Shun Kanso 8-Inch All Purpose Chef’s Knife is designed to be in line with the Zen principle of simplicity – the knife performs well and it looks elegant in your kitchen. This left handed chef knife is double beveled, so even your right-handed family members and friends can use it when they help you meal prep.
The blade features a 16-degree angle on each side. It is full tang, so the blade and handle core are one piece of high carbon vanadium stainless steel (AUS10A). The knife has a razor-sharp blade that retains its edge and sharpness for longer. Its finish is a traditional heritage one, which gives the knife its rustic look.
The full tang also ensures the knife is well-balanced in your left hand while giving you better cutting control. There’s a bit of heft to the knife without feeling too heavy. The 8” blade is versatile because you can cut all kinds of ingredients; however, it is better suited for cutting larger ingredients like meat, lettuce heads, watermelon, and butternut squash. You can also easily slice through elongated ingredients like cucumber, zucchini, salmon, and carrots using a single stroke. Its rocking motion is great too.
The handle is made from Tagayasan wood, which is known as iron sword wood. This wood is known for its durability, denseness, and beauty. Its hardness means that the handle is handcrafted and will last you a lifetime, which is why this is not a budget knife. The handle gives you a symmetrical grip even though it is slightly contoured or angled to help with precision cutting using a pinch grip.
Well-balanced with a comfortable grip.
8” blade is versatile and ideal for newbies and pros in the kitchen.
Shun will sharpen the knife for free if you have registered your purchase.
Ideal for a pinch grip.
The knife doesn’t come with a sleeve so take care when storing it.
The knife needs to be dried thoroughly after washing or rust will start to appear.
Shun Classic 6-Inch Chef Knife
The Shun Classic 6-Inch Chef Knife is a versatile knife and is a nice addition for any kitchen where a lighter chef knife means less wrist fatigue if you need to do a lot of meal prep. This smaller knife is ideal for smaller hands as well as for chopping and dicing smaller fruits and vegetables.
The blade is made from cutting core VG-Max steel. Made from a total of 69 layers of stainless steel, the Stainless Damascus Cladding looks elegant and is corrosion and stain-resistant. The blade is strong, sharp, and durable.
The double 16-degree edged knife is perfect for left-handed and right-handed users. The handle is made from ebony-colored pakkawood, which is a genuine wood that is infused with resin. As such, the handle is durable and water-resistant.
The asymmetrical handle is D-shaped so it fits comfortably in your hand when you curl your fingers around the handle. Although this design was originally meant for right-handers, an old left-handed version was discontinued because most lefties stated that they prefer this classic version.
Ideal for those with a smaller hand or for chopping smaller ingredients.
Lightweight and durable.
Razor-sharp blade that retains its edge.
Manufacturer will sharpen the knife for free.
There will be a few lefties that find the D-shaped handle uncomfortable.
Reviewers say the blade is thin, especially the point, which can break if the knife is dropped.
DALSTRONG Chef Knife – 8″ – Shogun Series – Damascus – Black G10 Handle
The DALSTRONG Shogun Series Chef Knife is stunning with the blade pattern. For a double-edged knife that looks super cool and is very durable, you can’t go wrong with it. The sharp blade is made from 67 alternating layers of SUS410 Damascus stainless steel to ensure it is durable and stain-resistant. The blade has an AUS-10V super steel core, and the blade is fully stainless steel clad so it stays cleaner for longer and is corrosion and rust-resistant. Cryogenic tempering ensures the left-handed cooking knife is strong.
The double bevel blade features an 8 to12-degree angle that’s made using the 3-step Honbazuke method, so it is ideal for lefties and righties. The beautiful hammered tsuchime finish serves to reduce drag and prevent food from sticking to the blade as you cut. Although this is styled as a Gyotu knife, its blade edge isn’t as rounded as some others, which amateur cooks may appreciate. However, you can still get a nice and easy rocking motion while you slice.
The full tang ensures the whole knife feels balanced in your hand while increasing the longevity of the knife. The ergonomic handle is made from military-grade G10, which is a non-porous fiberglass-like material that is impervious to moisture, heat, and cold. The tapered bolster on the handle enables superior hand control, comfort, and agility while cutting and chopping, especially with a pinch grip.
Durable, sharp, well-balanced, and comfortable.
Comes with a blade sheath to keep your blade protected when not in use and is gift packaged.
Allows for a nice rocking and slicing motion without having too much of a rounded bevel.
Some may find the hammered finish hard to clean.
For those who use a full palm grip, the end beginning of the handle near the end of the blade is not shallow enough to allow for much finger clearance over the cutting board.
Henckels Classic 8-inch Professional Chef Knife
The Henckels Classic 8-inch Professional Chef Knife is a durable, cooking knife that’s less expensive than the above well-known ones. It looks professional, and is sharp and long-lasting. If you are a lefty, you can’t go wrong with this knife. The Spanish-assembled knife’s blade is made from high-quality German stainless steel that offers precision cutting and long-lasting sharpness.
The blade is rust-resistant and satin-finished but the top edges are at sharp 90 degree angles near the handle, which can hurt when the knife is new if you’re used to placing a finger on top or using a pinch grip. However, once the angles dull after a few uses, this elegant knife will inspire confidence with every cut.
The knife is well-balanced and ergonomic because it features a traditional triple-rivet handle design going fully through the full tang of the blade. The handle is also a shade heavier than other 8″ knives, which some people will prefer. It features a short full bolster to keep your fingers from accidentally pushing onto the blade.
Although this knife can be cleaned in the dishwasher, to keep your knife in pristine condition, hand wash it.
Sharp blade that holds its edge well.
Ergonomic handle and balance that promotes a light grip even for large hands.
Has a full protective bolster.
Good value for money.
The bolster is short but full instead of angled, so sharpening the end of the blade is difficult.
The blade’s spine in front of the bolster is sharply angular, which can hurt your finger when it’s new.
IMarku 8-inch Full Tang Chef Knife
As a multi-functional knife, the IMarku 8-inch Full Tang Chef Knife easily dices, cuts, slices, and chops fruits, veggies, and meat. So if you are looking for one that is suitable for left-handed users with a hardy and sharp blade and ergonomic handle and won’t break the bank, then this could be it.
The sharp blade is made from high-carbon German stainless steel and is rated at 53-57 on the Rockwell Hardness Scale. This is a durable and sturdy knife and is low maintenance but will need sharpening from time to time if you use it for frequent cutting of hard or frozen foods.
The pakkawood double-riveted handle is ergonomic to minimize fatigue, aches, and finger numbness while you work with the knife for long periods. The wood is also durable and with the full tang, it aids in knife stability. However, beginners may find it on the heavy side.
Durable and well-balanced.
Ergonomic handle reduces hand fatigue.
Versatile cook’s knife.
Some reviewers say it isn’t easy to remove watermarks from the blade, but if you hand wash and dry it well immediately afterward, watermarks shouldn’t be an issue.
A bit heavy for beginners.
NOBOX All Purpose 8-inch Chef Knife
The NOBOX All Purpose 8-inch Chef Knife is user-friendly and ideal for left-handed and right-handed traveling cooks and those who love to prep their food off the path, yet it works well in any kitchen too with its sleek design. Included with your purchase is a clippable leather sheath so you can protect and store the knife when it isn’t being used. The belt clip lets you carry the knife around with ease, so it’s ideal for camping.
Because of its slimmer design, you can clean fish with it in a pinch, which gives it a special appeal. However, it may take some time for you to get used to the more curved blade. The knife is well-balanced and the 8″ stainless steel blade is treated with high heat and cryogenesis to help it keep its sharp edge well while sharpening readily. It has a full-length edge, which means that the cutting edge reaches the back of the blade.
The rosewood handle is non-slip and ergonomic. Because the chef knife has a full tang, it is balanced and comfortable, making chopping, cutting, slicing, and dicing a breeze.
Easy to sharpen and maintain.
Ergonomic and lightweight.
Included leather sheath with belt clip.
One reviewer said the knife is better suited for cutting meat and soft vegetables rather than hard ones.
The tick blade is not meant for thin slicing.
Aroma House Chef Knife Professional 8-Inch Kitchen Knife
The multipurpose Aroma House chef knife is a great entry-level knife. It features a full tang design, so you already know the knife is well-balanced and will feel great in your grip. With a 15-degree angle on both sides, the double-edged blade can be used by both right-handed and left-handed people.
With a Rockwell Hardness rating of 56+, this is one strong blade. It is made from German high-carbon stainless steel so it retains its edge well and is rust-resistant.
The handle is made from pakkawood, so it is durable. It is also non-slip and ergonomic, so you don’t have to worry about fatigue, aches, or finger numbness while working in the kitchen with the knife.
If you would like a knife sharpener included when you buy a left-handed cooking knife, then the Aroma House 8” chef knife is a great buy. It comes in an elegant gift box, so it’s a great birthday present for anyone.
Durable and ergonomic.
Retains its edge well.
Rust and corrosion resistant.
Knife sharpener is included when you buy the chef knife.
Some reviewers complained the knife was poorly packed with scratches on the blade and/or the handle wasn’t smooth.
How to Choose the Best Left Handed Chef Knife
There are a few considerations to keep in mind when you are looking at the best left-handed chef knife:
One of the first considerations when buying a chef knife is the bevel. If you buy a traditional single bevel knife, you won’t be able to use it as a lefty. If you have your heart set on a single edged blade, you need to look specifically for a single-bevel knife that is made to be used by left-handers.
Double bevel knives can be comfortably used by lefties and righties. All the knives on our list here are double-edged. But there are other things to take note of as well when choosing a high-quality chef knife.
Material of the Blade
Knife blades are made in various materials, and each has advantages and disadvantages.
Most popular blades are made from carbon steel, stainless steel, and high-carbon steel.
Stainless steel knives are rust-resistant, but they don’t retain their edge well. Carbon-steel blades retain their edge sharpness better, but they are corrosion-prone. High-carbon stainless steel blades are strong and retain their edge well. However, these high-carbon blades are pricey though worth the investment.
Shape of the Blade
The next consideration is the shape of the blade on a chef’s knife. The more common blade originated in Europe and has a rounded cutting edge so you can rock the knife back and forth easily. Only the back half of the blade actually cuts the food, while the front half is meant to guide the edge on the board and get you into a smooth and even rhythm. The Japanese version of this rocking-style blade is called a Gyotu.
The Santoku blade is constructed with a more consistent width from the front of the blade to the back except for the part just near the tip. The top portion curves down like a sheep’s hoof as it reaches the tip. This type of blade does not rock in place but moves straight up and down.
Which shape to buy just depends on which cutting method feels most comfortable, but most cooks easily adapt to either one with a bit of practice. The western-style blade can also be found in slightly shorter versions that are a little lighter for those who may have weaker wrists or tend to feel fatigued if cutting for a long time.
If you want to chop up herbs, devein shrimp or cut through cartilage, a pair of kitchen shears is a better option.
An often neglected factor when choosing a quality knife is the handle. It is, in fact, just as important as the blade. The material the handle is made from should be durable, water and oil-resistant, and slip-free. Most chef knife handles are made from plastic, wood, and stainless steel. If you choose a wooden handle, make sure it’s been treated to resist water and oil to make it longer lasting.
Balance, Tang, and Comfort
How the left-handed chef knife feels in your hand is important too. This relates to comfort, balance, and the tang.
The handle isn’t always symmetrical even if the blade is. For example, the double-beveled Shun Classic has a D-shaped handles where the right side is more curved than the left so that a right-hander’s palm and fingers can wrap comfortably around it. The company did make an equivalent left-hander’s version but discontinued it when many lefties preferred the right-handed one!
The tang refers to the knife’s blade. A chef knife that has a full tang means that blade runs all the way through the knife into the handle. Full tang knives give you a better balanced grip, but they are more expensive than partial tang knives where the blade doesn’t fully run into the handle.