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Quality kitchen knives for $20 or less

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I have found the Calphalon Contemporary line to be great knives for the money. They cut well, have comfortable ergonomic handles, and are well-balanced. I also like that the handles are big enough for a man's hand.

They are made of fully forged German steel in China. I have found 7" santoku and 8" chef's for $15-20 in stores like TJ Maxx, Home Goods, and Marshalls. (I'm in CA)

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  1. Discount stores are good places to shop for good deals. Sometime they are much lower than elsewhere, sometime they are not, but they are still great for checking out. We have similar topics on affordable knives like, “Any opinions on best cheap knife brands and models under $30”:

    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/6789...

    or “Best Knifes Not you whole paycheck?”

    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/4051...

    There are a few good performance Chef's knives in the price range between $20-30, but I cannot think of any <$20 Chef’s knife which I can wholeheartedly recommending. Kiwi knives are below $20, but I don’t know if many people get over their not-so-attractive looks. They do have good steel for their prices:

    http://importfood.com/thai_knives.html

    http://wokshop.stores.yahoo.net/kiknf...

    2 Replies
    1. re: Chemicalkinetics

      I'd recommend Forschner's. All not under $20, but they make some very good knives for the money. Stamped and not forged but found in professional kitchens. They are made by the same people who make Swiss Army Knives. It also doesn't hurt when you can afford higher end forged knives, to donate the old ones. I'd also keep watch on E-Bay for better knives. Even if thery have been mistreated they usually be brought back to life. Where I work we sharpen knives and have rescued some poorly cared for knives.

      1. re: Candy

        As mentioned above, Victorinox Fibrox Knives are one of the few true bargains in cookware. If you can pop for 5-6 bucks over $20, they're hard to beat.

    2. The colorful plastic-handled Kuhn-Rikon paring knives that sell for $10 are quite good. They come with a plastic sheath that is quite handy.

      http://www.kuhnrikon.com/products/too...

      3 Replies
      1. re: DavidT

        Ross Stores is another place to look for discounted knives and other cookware. I have found a couple of very usable Farberware knives there for under $20.

        1. re: DavidT

          This is true, Ross is where I got some. Also, if you have smaller hands, the Victorinox Fibrox Knives mentioned above are excellent. I find their handles a bit on the small side.

          1. re: DavidT

            I just bought a spanish henckels paring knife at ross for $11, i like it a lot. Best bargains are forschner or dexter russell, but not under $20 unless you buy used on ebay once in a while

        2. I've purchased one of the Calphalon in the past and I found the handle to be quite comfortable as well.