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What is a better purchase for a commercial kitchen: carbon steel knives or stainless steel knives?

What is a better purchase for a commercial kitchen: carbon steel knives or stainless steel knives?



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Kinnek Knowledge Team

Stainless steel knives and carbon steel knives each have unique advantages and disadvantages.  Below is a 'general overview' of these advantages/disadvantages -- different grades of steel and different manufacturing processes may help to offset the disadvantages.

Stainless steel advantages: cheaper than carbon steel, resistant to staining, corrosion, and rust.
Stainless steel disadvantages: more difficult and time-consuming to maintain (more brittle, requires frequent sharpening, etc.).

Carbon steel advantages: easier to maintain (requires less frequent sharpening as it keeps a sharp edge for a longer period of time, stronger than stainless steel).
Carbon steel disadvantages: more expensive than stainless steel, less resistant to staining, corrosion, and rust.

Assuming you take the proper precautions to prevent rust and corrosion, carbon steel is a more expensive, but lower-effort purchase, which may be more useful in a busy commercial kitchen.  If money is not too much of an issue, then consider purchasing high carbon stainless steel, which combines the advantages of stainless steel and high carbon steel -- it is strong, resistant to corrosion and rust, and requires less maintenance (blade stays sharp for longer and is easier to sharpen).

Good luck!

Nov 23, 2015

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