Theis one of the kitchen tools a home chef uses most. What most people don’t know is how easy it is to ruin a kitchen knife, even just by washing it improperly. If you have some beautiful blades you want to have for years, there are a few good habits to get into — and some to break — to keep that knife sharp and sturdy for years. Washing your knives properly and storing them safely are two big ways to extend a knife’s life, but how you use your chef’s knife can have an outsized impact on the life of your blade edge, too.
If you’re looking for a great new knife, we’ve tested to find the. If you’ve got one you love, below is a list of kitchen knife no-nos to avoid that will ruin your knife in no time. These are the top seven ways you might be ruining your kitchen knives and how to become a better blade owner in 2022.
Seven habits that will ruin a kitchen knife
1. Cutting on anything but wood or plastic
There are boards and blocks made from all sorts of materials but many of them are not knife-friendly. Stone or marble boards and glass surfaces should be reserved for serving food, not preparing it (at least not with a knife) since they will dull your blade faster than almost anything else.
Even one slice on a glass or marble surface can do irreparable damage to your chef’s knife.
and are technically the softest (and cheapest!) materials you’ll find cutting boards made from, and thus will be the gentlest on your blades. Most wooden cutting boards, however, should have enough give to not damage your blade.
2. Storing your knives free in a drawer
This is probably the biggest mistake folks make with their kitchen knives. I’ve seen it more times than I can count and it hurts me every time. Letting your knives clink around in a drawer with other knives and metal tools will dull or chip them over time. I get that you might not want to keep a clumsy block on the counter, but there are some pretty sleek options these days likeand . You can also buy an or sheath your knives with plastic cases. The coolest option may be to store the knives on one of these ($24 on Wayfair) and show off your shiny blades to dinner guests.
Not only will this setup ruin your knife, but you’re bound to hurt yourself eventually.
3. Letting knives sit in the sink or putting them in the dishwasher
For many reasons, your knives should never go in the dishwasher. It’ll likely damage the handles, and the blades should never be exposed to water for that long. Speaking of which, never let a knife sit wet in the sink or anywhere else for that matter. That means no soaking, ever, and when you’ve finished washing it by hand, dry it immediately or the metal will become susceptible to rust and corrosion.
I don’t care how hungry you are, get that knife out of the sink and dry it off before you sit down to eat.
4. Cutting nonfood items or using your knife as a general tool
Good knives may seem like a multipurpose tool but they should only be used for food prep. Try not to cut any nonfood items like plastic, cardboard or other packaging. And don’t even think about employing your knife as a screwdriver or lever to pry open something that’s stuck.
5. Using a metal scrubber or rough sponge
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that using metal or another rough material to clean your knife blade could lead to big problems. Instead, use hot water and a soft sponge or cloth. Your knives should never be so dirty that those aren’t enough to get them clean.
Steel wool is great for some dishwashing jobs but will ruin your knife’s edge in seconds.
6. Oversharpening a knife will also ruin the blade
There comes a point at which a knife blade can’t be sharpened anymore, and if you continue to pound it on a steel or whetstone, you’ll only be shaving off the blade itself and shortening the knife’s life span. Here’s a.
Sharpening is good. Oversharpening is bad.
7. Scraping your knife sideways on the board
Knives were really only made to cut in two directions, back and forth and not side to side, so try not to use your good knives in a scraping manner. It may be instinct to move and gather all that chopped food on the board with the blade of the knife but it will damage the edge over time. If you can’t break the habit completely, at least try and do it gently and without much downward force.
Using your knife as a scraper is a hard habit to break but the blade will thank you.