Many people invest a lot of money in their kitchen knives, they are after all an essential part of any kitchen. Quite often though sharpening them is completely neglected and people often don’t even think they need to sharpen their knives. Knives dull over time like any sharp object. The more they are used the duller they get, put bluntly (ha!) you need to be sharpening your kitchen knives!
The question is, what is the best method of sharpening? A lot of people prefer a traditional sharpening stone but this is quite a lot of work and because of that, there is of course an electric gadget to make it easier for us.
So we are going to take a look at some of the best electric sharpeners on the market whether it be for commercial use or home use.
This one makes the list for being cheap and cheerful. It’s not the best one out there by a long long way. It’s a really basic sharpener but that is reflected in the price. It’s not going to last you years and years but you will get some good use out of it.
It’s basic in what it does, it has 2 stages of sharpening. Stage 1 reshapes the angle, sharpens and rejuvenates the edge, while Stage 2 finishes the sharpening process honing and polishing the blade.
This one is easy to clean as the plugs are removable so you can quickly remove any dirt or debris after sharpening. The receptacles are removable as well.
This is great choice for the casual knife sharpener, it works as described and the rock bottom price makes it a bargain. Amazon reviewers are very positive about it as well and it’s one of the top sellers on there. If you use your knives a lot then you should be looking elsewhere but this will be just fine if you want to give your knives the very occasional sharpen. If you have spent a lot of money on your knives though consider investing a but more and taking care of your initial investment.
Another popular option on Amazon is the Presto 08810 Professional. It’s marginally more expensive than the LINKYO at the time of writing but it has a couple of extra features to go with the price tag. So the LINKYO has a 2 stage sharpening system this one has a 3 stage system. It also has interchangeable blade guides provide optimum sharpening angles.
Now this sharpener calls itself a “Professional” sharpener but it’s not one I would consider if you are a professional chef or any kind of serious cook. It’s another good budget option that works well. Definitely one to consider for casual users.
One of the best features about this one is that it takes away any guess work by holding your knife at the perfect angle for you so that not only do you get a great result the first time but you get a great result every time after that as well.
We are stepping up a bit now in terms of price with this very popular system. With 3 sections for straight edge, serrated edge and an option for double-bevel knives this sharpener does it all. Many cheaper sharpeners are limited to a certain style of blade but this one can handle pretty much anything you throw at it. It is equipped to hand Asian, European or American made sets so no matter what knife set you have you can get a fantastic sharpen here.
Most kitchen knives made today are ground at 15°, this sharpener will maintain that angle ensuring your knives stay as good as new year upon year. Many older sets were ground at 20° but that too is no problem as this sharpener will place a sharper 15° edge on those blades as well giving even your oldest knives a new lease of life.
As well as doing kitchen knives this will happily sharpen any other knives you have lying around like pocket knives or hunting knives.
It’s made in the USA and has a 3 year warranty.
Very similar to the previous Chef’s Choice this one both in terms of looks and features but this one is just a little bit more precise in our view. If you weren’t already aware Wusthof are a high end German brand of knives popular with pro chefs. Wusthof partnered with chef’s Choice to produce this sharpener. So you are getting the brains from one of the best knife manufacturers and the best sharpener manufacturers working together to produce a fantastic sharpener.
The PEtec in the name stands for Precision Edge Technology and that is exactly what you get here. Featuring 3 stages of sharpening, it starts with a diamond abrasive wheel to create a new edge on the knife. Then moving onto stage 2 is has a finer diamond grit wheel to hone and refine the knife edge. Finally stage 3 uses an polishing material to polish the blade into a razor sharp edge. This can be done on serrated edge knives as well as flat blades.
This isn’t just for Wusthof knives though, it will work with all western style knives and give all your knives the ultra sharp 14° edge that Wusthof are famed for.
This is a really high quality piece of kit and one that any professional chef would be happy to own and use with their knives. Being made by Chef’s Choice means it is made in the USA but with a bit of German engineering thrown in for good measure.
Very few sharpeners can handle ceramic knives but the Shenzhen can. Shenzhen are one of the top ceramic knife producers, it is their specialty so it should come as no surprise that a sharpener from them can also sharpen ceramic blades. If you have ceramic knives then this is the sharpener for you.
It can of course handle steel blades as well and it does a fine job on both blade types. One of the big problems with ceramic blades is that they can chip if you aren’t careful with them. Fortunately this sharpener can remove chips up to 1mm in depth.
It has a diamond wheel cartridge that you can replace. Replacement cartridges are quite cheap and they last a good while. The fact that you can do this means that this sharpener should last a long time as you can easily replace the parts that wear out. This removable cartridge also means it is very easy to keep clean.
The only problem with this one is that it can’t do serrated blades. It also doesn’t do scissors or other knife types like hunting knives and folding pocket knives. If you need a ceramic sharpener though then you have definitely found the one for you, so few other devices can handle ceramics and this is definitely the best one for the job anyway. This is a very reasonably price sharpener too.
The world of knife sharpening is a lot more complicated than most people realize. So picking the right sharpener can be a bit of a head ache. Obviously the more sharpening stages a device can put a knife through is going to be better but that doesn’t mean that the budget 2 stage sharpeners don’t produce good results. All the sharpeners on our list perform really well and will give your knives a new lease of life.
If you paid a lot of money for your knives though you really want to protect that investment and a good sharpener will do that. It seems crazy to spend a lot of money on knives and then get a cheap sharpener. If you have a good set of knives or you are using them constantly then take a look at either of the Chef’s Choice sharpeners we have on our list.
If you have ceramic knives then the only choice for you is the Shenzhen sharpener. It is the only one that can handle ceramic blades. It can do steel as well but it isn’t as good as the Chef’s Choice but that is reflected in the price difference.
One thing you should consider when buying a sharpener is the manufacturers warranty. All these devices have many moving parts and those parts will wear out over time. The longer the warranty the more confident the manufacturer are they will last a long time. The Chef’s Choice options comes with a 3 year limited warranty.
If you are new to sharpening then you might want to get a cheaper model to begin with to allow you to get to grips with the process involved. Having said that none of them are particularly difficult to use and they all come with detailed instructions so you can’t go wrong.
Let us know in the comments what electric sharpening system you went for.