What’s the Difference Between Japanese and German Knives?

Japanese knives generally are incredibly sharp and light. These blades are designed to slice and chop ingredients precisely. On the other hand, German knives are known for their toughness. They’re more versatile and durable compared to its counterpart.

In this blog post, we will learn more differences between these blades. More so, we will unveil why the latter is superior to the former.

Japanese and German blades

Japanese Knives

General Description

Japanese knives are well-known for their sharpness. These blades have a thin edge coating that gives them a razor-like appearance and the ability to cut smoothly through any ingredients.

Because of its high blade angle, you can see the Hamon line on Japanese knives – this is due to how these blades are made.



Japanese blades are made with harder steel and range from 60 to 63 on the Rockwell scale. Though its counterpart is also hard, these blades are still harder. This property makes them sharper for slicing and chopping ingredients.


Japanese knives are incredibly sharp. Even when dull, they can cut through hard ingredients such as squashes and potatoes.


These blades take pride in their lightness. This makes them easier to use and also reduces the stress on your hands when working with them.

Knife Maintenance 

Japanese knives also require minimal maintenance because they retain their sharpness longer than other types of blades. Re-sharpening these blades takes less time than it would to re-sharpen other knives. The hardness of the steel allows them to maintain their edge for longer periods of time and they don’t require frequent sharpening.

Minimal Food Waste

Japanese blades are razor-sharp. Because of this, you won’t see much food waste when preparing your culinary creations. 



Although they’re sharp, Japanese knives have low toughness. They can easily break if you drop them on a hard floor or if you use the wrong knife sharpener.

Quality Control Issues

Since Japanese knives are not mass-produced, they’re usually handmade and require more attention from their manufacturers. This adds to higher production costs but also leads to lower quality control standards and therefore, inferior products.

German Knives

General Description

These blades are more robust and versatile. They can withstand regular use in any type of kitchen. German knives are usually curved, which facilitates the common rocking style of chopping.



German blades are tough and therefore can be used in any type of kitchen. They also have a high blade angle which makes them sharp enough to deal with hard ingredients.


These knives have a high blade angle which is an indication of how hard the steel used in its production is, making them highly durable. With a Rockwell scale of 57, they’re more durable than Japanese knives and can withstand regular use.


German knives are some of the best in the world for chopping vegetables because they provide a thick bolster that is made up of steel and continues all the way to where you would grip it. They also come with full-tangs which means there’s metal extending straight through your knife before reaching either end, making them very durable.


Since these knives are larger, they tend to be heavier. This means you won’t have difficulty using them in your kitchen. They also reduce the stress on your hands when chopping or slicing ingredients.

Size and Weight

Large blades usually mean more weight. They also require more working space and can be tiring to use if they’re too heavy.



German blades have a lower blade angle which means you can’t slice ingredients as finely as you would with Japanese knives. They also won’t be able to withstand the same level of sharpness or edge retention.

The Better Choice

Weighing these factors in mind, we can conclude that both knives live up to the expectations. Nonetheless, German blades edged out Japanese knives when talking about durability and versatility.

Final Verdict

Although Japanese knives are some of the best in the world of knives, in terms of durability and versatility, German knives stand tall as the best ones available in the market.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.