Do you want the next cleaver you get to be the best cleaver knife you’ve ever had? These knives are essential for a professional and enthusiast kitchen setup. We’ll help you pick a cleaver knife that’s perfect for your needs and budget.
You won’t need to weed through countless options on the market that don’t live up to the claims they make. We’ve done this so you don’t have to. You’ll find relevant information about how each knife performs, what’s unique, and how they give you value for money. Let’s jump in!
Table of Contents
- 1 Top 3 – Best Cleaver Knives
- 2 Top 7 Best Cleaver Knife Reviews in 2023
- 3 Important Points to Consider When Buying a Cleaver Knife
- 4 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
- 5 Final Thoughts
Top 3 – Best Cleaver Knives
|Aroma House Meat Cleaver Knife||
|Kiaitre Chinese Chef and Cleaver Knife||
|Imarku Chopper Cleaver Knife||
Top 7 Best Cleaver Knife Reviews in 2023
When you’re choosing a kitchen knife, it’s all about getting one that’s right for you. What works for me might be a terrible option for you. We’ll take a deeper look into the 7 knives we handpicked for this list. These best knives all have an excellent balance between performance, durability, price, and usability.
You’ll be able to pick a knife that gives you what you’re looking for – and lives up to expectations. Our goal is to get you ready to make a decision that has the potential to completely change your kitchen experience and to give you 7 awesome options to get you started. Let’s jump into the reviews!
Aroma House Meat Cleaver Knife
Here’s the best cleaver knife that’s perfect for quickly breaking down larger cuts (boneless meats) while not losing the ability to chop, dice, and mince. The blade’s edge is at 17-degrees, helping it slide effortlessly through meat and not generating too much friction when you’re doing quick chopping.
You’re getting a durable blade that’s been forged from a single, high-quality piece of steel. Consistency is key and this knife gets it just right. There aren’t many – if any – flaws in the finish and this is made even better by the affordable price. It’s a fantastic knife if you’re on a limited budget and want some premium features on your next cleaver knife. You’re getting a visually stunning handle and a top best cleaver knife blade for home use.
- Durable and attractive handle
- Cuts through large pieces of boneless meat with ease
- It’s easy to sharpen the 17-degree angled edge
- An affordable option with great value for money
- The blade can be easily rusted or corroded if you don’t wash it with soapy water after every use
- The handle could use a little more end and start grip resistance
Kiaitre Chinese Chef and Cleaver Knife
One of our favorite features of this Chinese Chef knife – other than the unique design and shape – is that the tip sits closer to the centerline of the blade. This adds loads of versatility to how you use the knife. You’ll be able to use the tip to split and prod vegetables and work through different cuts of meat easily.
You’ll find that the unique curved shape of the blade reduces the strain on your hands and wrist. It’s easy to forget that you’re holding a hefty and rather weighty vegetable chopping cleaver. It’s an expertly balanced blade and this further improves its handling and overall experience.
This is a knife you’ll be able to use in a busy kitchen. It’s efficient and effective at dicing, chopping, mincing, and slicing. This isn’t your go-to knife for meat and bone cutting – though it’ll handle softer boneless meat very well. Overall, this is a top-rated best cleaver knife that’s easy on your eyes and even easier on your wallet.
- Unique curved blade design puts the tip closer to the centerline of the blade
- Extremely versatile for all cutting, slicing, dicing, and mincing kitchen work
- Unbelievably well-balanced
- Comes very sharp and ready out the box
- Sharpening is slower and more technically difficult than other flat edge cleavers
- Takes quite a while to get used to using this knife if you’re coming from standard shaped cleavers
Imarku Chopper Cleaver Knife
With an HRC rating of 60-62, this cleaver has an extremely sharp edge that holds well. It’s versatile and sharp enough to handle lighter chopping work and heavier mincing and meat slicing. It’s a well-balanced cleaver and has just the right amount of heft to make wielding it more effortless than most cleavers at this price.
The Pakkawood handle is treated to be bacteria resistant and non-slip. You’ll be able to get a comfortable grip regardless of your hand size. This knife is more geared towards home use as opposed to professional use. You’ll find that you don’t need to sharpen it frequently and it does an excellent job of staying rust and corrosion-free. It’s a top pick for the best cleaver knife.
- Durable, resistant, and comfortable Pakkawood handle
- Heavy-duty cutting power and effortless operation
- Versatile enough to handle lighter chopping and mincing
- Excellently balanced blade
- Bolster could be better designed to avoid bending and possibly breaking through consistent heavy use
- Sharpening is slow and difficult
Utopia Kitchen Butcher’s Cleaver Knife
This might be the best budget cleaver knife if you want a taste of what more expensive options will offer you. You’re not going to get top-of-the-line performance from this knife, but it’s reliable enough to use every day in a home kitchen.
You’re getting a stainless steel blade that’s not going to rust or corrode easily. I like this in low-cost knives as they’re often plagued by corrosion early on when left untreated. While not being perfectly balanced, you’re not going to notice it much – unless you’re coming from a premium knife.
This is an excellent knife if you’re looking for something to reduce the workload on your more expensive chef knife. This Utopia knife will do that, and save you some cash at the same time. Knowing this going forward, if it’s a budget knife you’re in the market for – you’re getting far more quality and utility than you’re paying for here.
- Very easy to clean and maintain this knife – and it’s dishwasher friendly
- Durable full tang design is visible and aesthetically pleasing
- Stainless steel is highly resistant to rust, bacteria, and corrosion
- Great value from a low-cost cleaver knife
- The handle is a little on the slippery side
- Doesn’t hold its edge as well as other cleavers at the same price
Dalstrong Phantom Series Cleaver Knife
This knife uses softer steel than many other Dalstrong knives in the Shogun series. This might initially put you off as softer steel in a cleaver isn’t always a great choice. It’s a blade that’s designed to like up to the name “Phantom”. It’s a lightweight knife that practically begs to be wielded. It feels like an extension on your hand and handles extremely nimbly.
You’ll be able to use this knife easily in a busy kitchen without straining your hand. You find it’s easier and less time-intensive to sharpen than Shogun series knives. These minor changes make a big difference in the overall experience you have with this knife.
You’ll save loads of money by choosing this knife over many of the far more expensive and less effective knives on the market. It’s an excellent choice if you run a busy kitchen and want an easy to use a hassle-free knife. This is a top-quality cleaver chopper knife that will quickly earn its place in your kitchen.
- Lightweight build and expert nimble handling
- Very easy to sharpen and maintain
- Good edge retention despite using softer steel
- High-quality Dalstrong sheath and blade cover
- The ridge on the handle is slightly too high if you’re used to the Shogun Series from Dalstrong
- You need to wash the knife immediately after use and before eating or it can lead to pitting
TUO Heavy Duty Meat Cleaver Knife
What I find most remarkable about this cleaver is that its balance point sits just where most pinch grips lay – just down from the bolster. This gives the knife impeccable workability and an almost weightless feel. You’ll be hard-pressed to find any flaws in the finish of the blade. It’s been very carefully crafted and looks excellent.
It comes expertly sharpened and ready for use right out the box. While this knife is designed more for vegetable cutting and chopping, it will handle meats well too. This is especially true for fish and other soft meats. I’d keep this blade away from tough bones if possible. There’s a chance you’ll chip or scuff the blade.
It has one of the most attractive and easy to hold handles of all cleaver knives in this price range. You’ll find the transition from handle to bolster and on to the blade is smooth and seamless. Overall, you’re getting one of the best cleaver knife options for the money.
- Gorgeous and practical handle with a swirly wood grain finish
- Impeccable and flawless blade finish
- Easy to maintain and sharpen
- 18-20 degree bevels reduce drag and make chopping effortless
- There’s no pouch or blade protector supplied with this knife
- Doesn’t handle cutting through bone as well as other cleavers
KYOKU Samurai Series Cleaver Knife
If you’re looking for a gift idea for newlyweds and friends and family who are culinary enthusiasts, here’s an excellent knife. The handcrafted Japanese knife comes in a beautiful box and a cover. For this price range, this cleaver knife is a steal! This is a knife that would slot perfectly into a modern kitchen.
It’s impeccably nimble while still packing enough power for some heavier duty work. Moreover, hard steel is used for the blade and this leads to it being exquisitely sharp with excellent edge retention. Unfortunately, that leaves the blade quite brittle and prone to being chipped or damaged.
You’ll want to avoid bones and only use this knife on composite and wooden cutting boards. Other than this, it’s an expertly designed knife that excels at chopping and dicing. It’s balanced nearly to perfection and the square blade is intuitive and easy to use.
- A perfect balance between feeling powerful and being nimble
- Extremely sharp and hold its edge well
- Beautifully packaged, great as a gift
- Durable ergonomic Pakkawood handle
- Steel is quite brittle
Important Points to Consider When Buying a Cleaver Knife
If you’re a cooking enthusiast then it’s only a matter of time before you come across a cutting task that could potentially ruin your expensive chef knife. What you need in those cases, is a cleaver knife. Therefore, we’re going to show you the most important features to pay close attention to when you’re choosing which cleaver knife is right for your kitchen.
The blade size you choose depends on the intensity and type of work you’ll be doing in the kitchen. If you handle a wide variety of hard-shelled seafood or full-chickens and hams, you might want to choose a blade that’s at least 7-8” long and over 3” high.
This will give you enough heft and power to break through tough shells accurately. If you’re working on smaller cuts then you should get a cleaver over 5.5” long.
Spine Thickness and Shape
Some spines round-off as they curve down to meet the cutting edge. These are better for batoning (hitting bones and joints with this rounded edge to loosen them up) and breaking shells without risking the cutting edge. Spines that lead to a point can add a little cutting accuracy and give the knife a handle-side balance – and reduce the overall weight of the knife.
The cutting edge needs to be super-sharp without being brittle (even on a composite cutting board). Make sure you choose a cleaver knife with an HRC rating of 54-58. Any higher and you’ll risk chipping the cutting edge. Any lower and edge retention won’t be great.
Ergonomics and Swing
This is quite subjective, but make sure the handle fits well in your hand and has some sort of ergonomic shaping to stop it from slipping out of your hand. Cleavers are heavier at the blade to improve the swing and chopping power – so make sure the knife is well-balanced for your type of work (heavier or lighter chopping).
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Q: How Do I Prevent a Cleaver Knife From Rusting or Corroding?
A: The main causes of rusting corrosion not cleaning the knife right after using, storing the knife while it’s still wet, and not using soapy mixtures to clean with. You should be cleaning and drying your cleavers IMMEDIATELY after using them.
You should even do this before eating the meal you’ve just prepared. Dry them thoroughly and make sure they are safely hung or stored. Always wipe the knife down with a soap and water mixture and dry it off after every use.
Q: How Do I Maintain and Sharpen and High-quality Cleaver?
A: I do a touch-up before every major meal I’ll use the cleaver for. If I don’t use it often, I’ll sharpen the edge once a week. In terms of maintenance, get a good cleaver sheath, storage block, or blade cover. This, in combination with a composite or wooden cutting board, will greatly extend the life of your cleavers and other knives.
By now you should feel far more confident about choosing the best cleaver knife. Hopefully, you’ve found answers to any questions you might have. If you’re still having some doubts, take some time to go back over the knives that interested you. Cleaver knives are essentials for any serious kitchen and enthusiast, so it’s important to get the right one for you.
Once you’re ready, take the plunge and order it. Once you have the best cleaver knife in your hands, you’ll be able to build skills and control that will make your kitchen work flourish!