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Top-10 Commercial Knives Every Kitchen Needs

Top-10 Commercial Knives Every Kitchen Needs

From slicing and dicing to filleting and boning, if there’s an investment you need to consider for your kitchen it’s your professional knives. These extensions of your hands are vital tools in any restaurant, café, or food service environment. But where do you start when narrowing down the options available? We take the hassle out of ensuring you have the right knives with this guide to the essentials you need in your kitchen.  

Standard or Chef Knives

This is the most versatile and popular kitchen knife considered the all-rounder. It’s used for chopping, slicing, mincing, and dicing. These knives vary in size with 20cm being the most common in kitchens. 

It’s not uncommon for chefs to have their own personal all-rounder with a selection of general population knives available for all staff to use in exclusive restaurants. If there’s one knife you need it’s a standard knife also referred to as a chef’s knife or cook’s knife. 

Utility Knives

The utility knife is just as popular and versatile as the chef knife with the difference of being shorter in length. These knives range from 10cm to 18cm in length and are often used for slicing meats or preparing vegetables. They’re a more compact all-rounder offering greater control and precision when used in place of a chef knife. 

Paring Knives

The paring knife is used for more detailed and precise tasks like peeling or trimming fruits and vegetables. They’re small in size, often between 6cm and 10cm, with a fine tip for getting into those difficult-to-reach areas. These knives are also the tool of choice for intricate food preparation activities like fruit carvings.

Carving Knives

Carving knives are suited to slicing cuts of meat like roasts and steaks. They range in size from 20cm to 38cm. The extra-long blades allow the user to take long continuous slices through the proteins ensuring an even slice with minimal wastage. The benefit of carving with a knife during plating is the ability to control portions and the width of each slice ensuring a perfectly plated meal every time. 

A variant of carving knives is slicing knives which have a longer and slenderer blade. These are the preferred tool when slicing through cooked roasts and hams and are often found at the service counter in carveries. The extra-long blade allows slices to be prepared from larger than usual roast meats with blades ranging from 15-25cm. 

Bread and Pastry Knives

It’s obvious what these knives are used for. The serrated edges on the blade make this tool ideal for slicing through bread or cakes without squashing or shredding the product. Bread knives range from 15cm to 25cm while pastry knives are longer (to navigate cakes) and they’re generally 25.5cm in length. The serrated edge makes these the optimal tool for slicing through crumbly menu items such as pastries or cakes that require a delicate touch with minimal pressure applied.

Boning Knives

Boning knives have narrow blades with sharp points making them ideal for removing bones from fish, meat and poultry. The pointed tip of the blades enables the user to get in tight spaces between the meat and bones for ease of separation. These knives range in size from 12cm to 17cm giving the user more control when completing the technical task of deboning proteins and are best used reserved for this activity to keep the blade in maximum condition for this specific task.

Filleting Knives

Filleting knives are commonly used to fillet fish, remove small bones and their skin. Filleting knives are like boning knives with the difference being their very thin and flexible blade enabling these tools to accomplish the most delicate of tasks when some give is required to expertly remove fish bones or skin. These knives range from 15cm to 28cm and need to be kept very sharp to be their most effective. It is recommended to reserve these knives specifically for filleting to maintain the integrity of the delicate blade, so it always performs at its most optimal. 

Shears and Scissors

Kitchen shears are scissors specifically designed for heavy-duty use in food prep environments. Their main uses are for cutting herbs, breaking down poultry, and cutting through food packaging in restaurants. They’re a necessity in any kitchen, considered the knives' best friend, as these affordable tools take the place of activities your knives believe they are far too superior to do. They’re also an ideal tool for apprentices to use in the preparation of herbs, or poultry as an example. 


A solid and heavy clear is ideal for chopping through meat and poultry in preparation for cooking. These are most predominantly used in traditional cooking and Asian kitchens. The multi-purpose tools are thicker, heavier and more versatile than the average knife with the ability to chop through bone, such as raw chicken carcasses, while gentle enough in vegetable preparation such as those used in stir-fries. These knives are usually around 15cm long and require regular maintenance and sharpening due to the workload they experience.  

Knife Sharpeners

What good is an investment into quality knives without the tools to maintain their sharpness and precision? Invest in a quality set of knives and don’t forget their best friend, the sharpener, to elongate their quality and life. There’s an array of sharpeners available depending on your skills and expertise. 

There are four main types of knife sharpeners:

  • Sharpening steels
  • Sharpening stones
  • Manual knife sharpeners
  • Electric knife sharpeners

Browse Reward Hospitality's collection of Commercial Knives

Finding professional knives that are suitable for your needs and budget is easy at Reward Hospitality New Zealand. We have a comprehensive range of knives available in our catalogue as well as a team of consultants ready to answer your questions. You’re welcome to engage us via phone, email, or online chat if you have any questions. We also have showrooms and retail outlets around the country you’re invited to visit to handle the merchandise in person.

Check out our catalogues for a glimpse of what we have available. 

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