An 8″ Chef’s Knife is the workhorse of the kitchen. It can be used to mince, slice, dice and chop vegetables, butcher a chicken, or carve a perfectly seared steak. It is not only the essential kitchen knife everyone should own, but it is also the first knife you should spend any serious money on because it will probably be the one you use the most.

Not only are dull, poorly designed knives dangerous, they suck the joy out of cooking. They make easy tasks challenging and time consuming.

Best Chef's Knives for Under $100 Primal Gourmet Paleo Whole30

A sharp, thoughtfully designed knife, on the other hand, will have you excited to get in the kitchen! It breathes life into your cooking and let’s you easily tackle prep work with less effort.

Generally speaking, you get what you pay for and the “Best Chef’s Knife” comes at a price. However, for those on a tighter budget, there are some very good options available that won’t necessarily break the bank.

I realize $100.00 is quite a bit of money for the vast majority of people. I was a grad student living well below the poverty line for almost 9 years, thank you very matcha. But if you buy cheap, you buy twice. So before making your decision, be sure to read more about what to consider when buying a Chef’s Knife here.

Best Chef's Knives for Under $100 Primal Gourmet Paleo Whole30

Best Bang for your Buck: Victorinox Fibrox 8” Chef’s Knife

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Rarely is the most affordable of the bunch a top contender. However, the Victorinox Fibrox, which costs just over $40 on Amazon, earns high marks for anyone with a small budget to spend.

The blade’s heel measures 5.2cm, providing an ample amount of knuckle clearance. The bolster measures 1.6cm but there is no transition from bolster to heel. Nevertheless, if held correctly, the bolster does a great job of dissipating any pressure onto the hand.

It should be noted that the Handle measures 3cm x 1.8cm, making it very thick and perhaps less practical for those with small hands.

What this knife lacks in the looks department, it makes up for in its attractive price and sharp edge, which clocks in around 55-56 Rockwell Hardness. It’s surprisingly lightweight (7.8 ounces) yet sturdy enough to easily butcher a chicken. It features an ergonomic handle that is comfortable, non-slip and food-industry safe.

I have seen some less than favourable Amazon reviews but my experience so far has been fantastic and I wouldn’t hesitate recommending this knife to anyone, including professional chefs.

Warning: This knife comes scary sharp out of the box so give it your full attention when using it the first few times.

Best All-Around: Zwilling Pro 8″ Chef’s Knife

Best Chef's Knives for Under $100 Primal Gourmet Paleo Whole30

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The Zwilling Pro Chef’s Knife is made in Solingen, Germany, features a full-tang construction, western style composite handle and scores around 57 Rockwell Hardness.

The blade’s heel measures 4.7cm, providing plenty of knuckle clearance. The bolster measures 1.5cm and gradually tapers into the spine, which nicely dissipates any pressure onto the hand.

It has a good weight to it (though a bit on the heavy side at 12.8 ounces) and the angled, contoured bolster makes it particularly comfortable when using a pinch grip. This has been my daily driver for over 3 years and it has yet to skip a beat.

This knife does not hold its edge for too long but it takes well to an electrical sharpener.

The Zwilling Pro 8” Chef’s Knife retails for $175.00 but regularly goes on sale for under $99.00. I’ve seen it as low as $49.00, making it an absolute steal of a deal. 

Reader’s Choice: Misen 8” Chef’s Knife

Best Chef's Knives for Under $100 Primal Gourmet Paleo Whole30

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Misen Chef’s Knives include a full-tang construction and western style composite handle. The blades are made from AUS-8, high-carbon, Japanese steel but they are manufactured in China, near Shanghai. For a mere $65.00, they are an attractive option for those on a budget.

Misen also provides its customers with a lifetime of free sharpening. You just have to cover the cost of shipping.

*Unfortunately, due to the current postal service strike, my review knife is stuck in transit. For the moment, I am recommending it based on the reviews of others whom I trust. I will update this section once I have had a chance to review.

New Kid on the Block: Made In 8” Chef’s Knife

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Made In 8″ Chef’s Knives are produced in France, feature a full-tang construction, western style composite handle and score a 58-60 Rockwell Hardness for $89.00. Though, at the time of writing this article they were 15% off and cost $76.00.

Like the Zwilling Pro, it features an angled bolster for added comfort.

*Unfortunately, due to the current postal service strike, my review knife is stuck in transit. For the moment, I am recommending it based on the reviews of others whom I trust. I will update this section once I have had a chance to review.

Fan Favourite: Global G-2 8″ Chef’s Knife

Best Chef's Knives for Under $100 Primal Gourmet Paleo Whole30

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The Global G-2 8″ Chef’s Knife is made in Japan and constructed from a single piece of CROMOVA 18 stainless steel. It scores a 56-58 Rockwell Hardness and maintains its edge for a considerably long time. It is also fairly easy to sharpen.

The handles, which seamlessly transition into the blade, are hollowed out and filled with sand to precisely balance the weight of the blade. Personally, I find the handle to be less comfortable than the Zwilling Pro. I also find the metal handle to be a bit slippery when butchering raw meat and fish. However, these are quite subjective opinions and I know that a number of my friends that absolutely love their Global knives. Almost to the point of a cult following.

One thing I do like about the Global G-2 is the curved edge above the heel, which allows you to securely wrap your index finger around the handle, rather than keeping it pinched to the side of the blade as with the Victorinox Fibrox.

The Global G-2 8″ Chef’s Knife retails for $159.00 on Amazon. Though it regularly goes on sale for $99.00 or under.