Chicago Cutlery Reviews

Chicago Cutlery Reviews

Chicago Cutlery Reviews: What Are the Best Knife Sets?

Chicago Cutlery Reviews are that Chicago Cutlery manufactures a variety of kitchen knife sets in their various collections, which are primarily marketed to home chefs at low prices. The company was founded in 1930 and initially only provided knife sharpening services. Due to high demand, they began producing professional knives for the meat and poultry industries. Chicago Cutlery knives were not available to the general public until 1969.

Chicago Cutlery knives were originally made in Chicago. My first encounter with these knives (and likely yours as well) was with the sturdy old, wooden-handled butcher knives that seemed to be in every household back in the 1970s and 1980s. My parents still have one passed down from my grandparents, and they adore it. However, the company was bought out in the late 1980s, and manufacturing was relocated to China. As a result, the knives made by the Chicago Cutlery company recently aren’t exactly the same as those made decades ago. Chicago Cutlery is now owned by Corelle Brands and is just one of the many kitchen and houseware brands they own.

Some Changes

Despite some changes, Chicago Cutlery is still known for producing great-looking, truly affordable kitchen knife sets for value-conscious home chefs. The blades are constructed of high-carbon stainless steel. The exact type of steel is not disclosed, but based on hundreds of reviews and knife forum discussions, it appears the steel is 420 steel or comparable. The knives are very sharp out of the box, but they dull quickly and require frequent sharpening, which is typical of softer steel. It’s also less expensive steel, which helps keep the Chicago Cutlery sets affordable.

Chicago Cutlery has collections of both forged and stamped knives, many of which are full-tang and have bolsters. They offer a variety of handle designs and materials, such as wood, polymer, and stainless steel. One of the things that makes Chicago Cutlery so appealing to home chefs is their wide selection of knife block sets at reasonable prices. You can find a stylish set to match your decor that includes all of the essential kitchen knives as well as steak knives for a reasonable price.

Chicago Cutlery Knife Series

As previously stated, Chicago Cutlery offers a diverse range of knife collections. Their knife lines generally adhere to the Good, Better, Best model. Heavy-duty forged knives are the “best” Chicago Cutlery knives. Their “better” level includes nice knives, many of which are still forged, but these are more concerned with providing the consumer with value for money. Finally, their “good” knives are the least expensive, mostly stamped collections that are still attractive but not as durable as those in other categories.

In order to cover the wide range of collections offered by Chicago Cutlery, we’ve included the names, a brief description, and a link to several of their knife series below. This is by no means an exhaustive list, but it does include their most popular options.

  • “Chicago Cutlery: A Review of the Popular Kitchen Knife Brand”
  • “Expert Review: Chicago Cutlery Knives for the Home Chef”
  • “Chicago Cutlery Knife Set: Our Review”
  • “The Best Chicago Cutlery Knives for Your Kitchen, Reviewed”
  • “Chicago Cutlery: Our Honest Review of the Kitchen Knife Line”

Best

Fusion: Chicago Cutlery’s Signature Line – Forged High Carbon Stainless Steel Blades with Comfortable Poly Handles

Insignia : High Carbon Stainless Steel Insignia, Full Tang Blades with Stainless Handles Designed to Encourage the Professional “Pinch Grip”

Insignia2 or Insignia II : Full-Tang, Forged, Heavy-Duty Bolster Knife Insignia2 or Insignia II (Knife Set Includes In-Block Sharpener)

Belden: Full Tang Forged Blades, Stainless-Steel Handles with Polymer Insets, and a Unique 25-Degree Sharpening Angle .

Better

Elston: Forged, All-Stainless-Steel Knife Set with a Contemporary Look and Feel

Burling: Full-Tang Stainless Steel Knife with Black Handles, Forged (Knife Set Includes In-Block Sharpener)

Malden: A Stylish All-Stainless Knife (Set Includes In-Block Knife Sharpener)

Avondale: Forged Knife with Dual Material Handle and Excellent Balance

Good

One of the Most Popular Knives at Chicago Cutlery (Stamped Blade, Full Tang, Plastic, Riveted Handles)

Walnut Tradition: These are the Old-School Wood Handle Knives mentioned earlier (Stamped Blade, Wood, Riveted Handles)

Damen: Full Tang Knife with Polymer Riveted Handles, Forged. Although the price is reasonable, no block set is provided.

ProHold: features an all-black design and a two-tone wood block. Stamped blade with black nonstick coating and textured plastic handles.

1. 17-piece Chicago Cutlery Fusion Knife Block Set

 

Cutlery Fusion Knife Set
Cutlery Fusion Knife Set

Knives Included:

  • 3.25″ Paring Knife,
  •  5″ Utility Knife,
  •  (8) 4.5′ Steak Knives,
  • 7.75″ Chef Knife,
  • 7.75″ Bread Knife,
  • 5″ Santoku,
  •  7″ Santoku Knife,
  • 8″ Sharpening Steel

Blade Material:

High Carbon Stainless Steel

Block Material:

Wood

Pros:

  • Heavy-Duty, Forged Blades w/ Full-Tang
  • Feels Great in Your Hands
  • Brings a Modern Look to Your Kitchen
  • Lots of Knives for this Price Point and Quality
  • Lifetime Warranty

Cons:

  • Steak Knives are not the same design as the other knives in the block.
  • No Kitchen Shears Included in Set

Chicago Cutlery Fusion Review:

Chicago Cutlery’s Fusion Series is our favorite in their lineup. They are made from a single piece of high-carbon stainless steel and have a full tang, which adds weight and balance to the knife. They have a great, modern design with black polymer, cushion-grip handles. You’ll be hard pressed to find a larger set of decent knives at this price point from any other brand besides Chicago Cutlery. Yes, there are less expensive knives available, but this is an excellent knife set for consumers looking for a well-made, forged knife set at a reasonable price.

2. Insignia2 Chicago Cutlery 18 Piece Cutlery Set 

Insignia2 Chicago Cutlery 18 Piece Cutlery Set 

Knives Included:

  • 3″ Paring Knife,
  •  3.5″ Paring Knife,
  •  5″ Boning Knife,
  •  5.5″ Utility Knife,
  • 7″ Serrated Bread Knife,
  • 7″ Santoku Knife,
  • 8″ Chef’s Knife,
  • 8″ Slicer,
  • (8) 4.5″ Forged Steak Knives,
  • Kitchen Shears

Blade Material:

High Carbon Stainless Steel

Block Material:

Maple Wood

Pros:

  • Forged Knife w/ Heavy-Duty Bolster
  • All Necessary Knives & Includes Kitchen Shears
  • Classic Styling
  • Affordable Price for Quality
  • 8 Matching Steak Knives
  • In-Block Knife Sharpener Included
  • Lifetime Warranty

Cons:

  • Block is Large and Takes Up a Lot of Counter Space

Chicago Cutlery Insignia2 Review:

The Chicago Cutlery Insignia2 Knives have a timeless appearance. They have a traditional German style, akin to prominent brands as J.A. Henckels and Wusthof knives. Though the Insignia2 knives do not employ the same high-quality steels as other brands, they are still a good choice for a beginner cook. The forged knives include a complete bolster, which adds strength and protects your fingers while cutting, and an in-block sharpener, which is useful for maintaining sharpness over time. Overall, the Insignia2 collection is worth considering if you’re looking for a solid set of knives at a reasonable price.

3. This 18-piece Chicago Cutlery knife set is part of the Insignia Series

Insignia Series 18-Piece Knife Set by Chicago Cutlery
Insignia Series 18-Piece Knife Set by Chicago Cutlery

Knives Included:

  • 3.25″ Peeler,
  • 3.5″ Paring Knife,
  • 5.5″ Serrated Utility Knife,
  •  8″ Serrated Bread Knife,
  •  7″ Santoku Knife,
  • 8″ Slicer,
  • 8″ Chef Knife,
  • 8″ 4.5″ Steak Knives,
  •  Kitchen Shears

Blade Material:

Satin Finished High-Carbon Stainless Steel

Block Material:

Natural Acacia Wood Block

Pros:

  • Large Set of Knives, Great Price
  • Dishwasher Safe
  • In-Block Knife Sharpener
  • Lifetime Warranty

Cons:

  • Light-Weight Design (Can Feel Insufficient In Your Hands

Chicago Cutlery Insignia Review:

The Insignia series has an ultra-modern look and is made entirely of stainless steel. Because they’re all stainless steel, many promote them as dishwasher safe; however, we always recommend hand washing knives to avoid rust. This set includes not only the in-block knife sharpener, but also some nice kitchen shears for cutting odds and ends in the kitchen. Another reasonably priced set worth considering.

4. Cutlery Set Of 14 Burling Knives From Chicago

Burling 14-Piece Knife Block Set by Chicago Cutlery
Burling 14-Piece Knife Block Set by Chicago Cutlery

Knives Included:

  • 7.75″ Chef Knife,
  • 8″ Serrated Bread Knife,
  • 5″ Utility Knife,
  • 3.5″ Paring Knife,
  • Kitchen Shears,
  • (8) 4.5″ Steak Knives

Blade Material:

High Carbon Stainless Steel

Block Material:

Expresso Wood

Pros:

  • Unique and Attractive Knife Set
  • Forged, Full Tang Design
  • Built-in Sharpener in Block
  • Lifetime Warranty

Cons:

  • Not As Many Larger Knives

Chicago Cutlery Burling Review:

The Chicago Cutlery Burling Series is a “middle of the road” set. The knives feature full-tang forged blades with integrated steel handles, and they come in a lovely wooden block with a built-in sharpener. The disadvantage of this set is that it does not have as many bigger knives. If you want to have everything you need, you’ll need to buy a slicing and boning/fillet knife separately. The good news is that if you like the Burling set, you can have it at a wonderful price. This may leave you with enough money to add to the collection if necessary.

5. Set of 15 Chicago Cutlery Essential Knife Blocks

15-piece Chicago Cutlery Essentials Knife Block Set
15-piece Chicago Cutlery Essentials Knife Block Set

Knives Included:

  • 3″ Peeler,
  • 3.5″ Paring Knife,
  •  4.5″ Serrated Fruit Knife,
  • 4.75″ Serrated Utility Knife,
  • 5″ Santoku Knife,
  • 7″ Santoku Knife,
  • 8″ Scallopped Bread Knife,
  •  (6) Serrated Steak Knives, And Kitchen Shears

Blade Material:

High Carbon Stainless Steel

Block Material:

Wood

Pros:

  • Cheapest Price for a Large Set
  • Great, Classic Look
  • Lifetime Warranty

Cons:

  • Low Quality Knives
  • Stamped Blades
  • Not Heavy Duty

Chicago Cutlery Essentials Review:

Chicago Cutlery’s “Essentials” knives are the finest alternative for people seeking for a low-cost set of “name-brand” kitchen knives. You get a lot of knives for a reasonable price with this bundle. But don’t be deceived; even if they resemble some of the higher-end blades, they are NOT high-quality knives. If you don’t intend to use your knives on a daily basis and just want a nice-looking set that will do the job, the Essentials collections may be for you.

Chicago Cutlery Steak Knives

Many of the above-mentioned series sell additional steak knives in 4-, 6-, or 8-piece sets that may be bought individually. Extra steak knives are usually a good idea to have on hand for dinner parties and other bigger gatherings when you’ll need more than the ones that came with your set.

Fusion – “The Best”

Fusion

Walnut – “Traditional”

Walnut

Insignia2 – “All Stainless”

Insignia2

Chicago Cutlery Review

Chicago Cutlery knives are developed on the belief that great-looking kitchen knives should be accessible to home cooks. We don’t think they missed the target here. Their knives feature attractive designs and are easy to use. Unfortunately, the materials utilized by Chicago Cutlery are no longer up to the grade that they once were. Their main critique is that, although their knives are exceptionally keen to begin with, they do not keep an edge well and must be sharpened regularly. One advantage is that many of the knife blocks come with an in-built sharpener that can be used at home. Here is a list of some advantages and disadvantages of Chicago Cutlery:

Pros:

  • A variety of stamped and forged sets are available.
  • Handles with a Comfortable Grip Unique and Classic Designs
  • Large sets of steak knives are available.
  • Reasonable Prices
  • Lifetime Guarantee

Cons:

  • Knives Must Be Sharpened Frequently
  • Not as long-lasting as higher-end brands
  • China mass-produces

If you’re on a tight budget and searching for a beautiful knife set, Chicago Cutlery is a fantastic option. As you can see, they have some amazing knife sets (with a LOT of knives) at a reasonable price. They also provide a lifetime guarantee to safeguard against manufacturer problems. These knives are unlikely to last a lifetime, but they are also unlikely to cost much. If you have the money to spend on a higher-quality set, we suggest looking at J.A. Henckels or Wushtof. Both of these companies have a low-cost series in addition to their higher-end selections.

We apologize for disappointing you if you came to Chicago Cutlery thinking it was a brand created in America. If this is essential to you, there are alternative American-made knife companies to consider. Lamson produces high-quality forged knives, although they are more expensive. Rada and Case provide less priced, stamped versions that are still of high quality.

Chicago Cutlery FAQs

Where Are Chicago Cutlery Knives Made?

Chicago Cutlery knives, like the majority of knives at this price category, are manufactured in China. The lower labor costs in this nation contribute significantly to the low prices of these knife sets.

Are Chicago Cutlery Knives Dishwasher Safe?

Chicago Cutlery suggests hand washing its knives “with a soapy towel and drying promptly.” Due to the carbon component in the “stainless” steel blades, washing them in the dishwasher may cause early damage and nicks, as well as ugly stains/corrosion.

What is the Best Chicago Cutlery Knife Set?

The Fusion Series knives are the finest they have to offer. They are forged, full-tang, stainless steel knives available in 12-piece, 17-piece, or 18-piece sets. All of their Fusion knife sets are excellent buys for price-conscious customers.

Does Chicago Cutlery Make Good Knives?

This, of course, is dependent on your definition of excellent. Consumers may easily find both better and poorer kitchen knives. In the big scheme of things, Chicago Cutlery’s knives are closer to the low-cost end of the spectrum than the high-quality end, but that doesn’t mean they’re awful. They’re fantastic knives if you want a beautiful, big set of knives for your home kitchen at a reasonable price.

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