Santoku Knife Care and Storage Guide

The Santoku knife, originating from Japan, is a versatile kitchen tool known for its ability to perform a wide range of tasks. Proper care and storage are essential to maintain its sharpness, performance, and longevity. Here’s how you can keep your Santoku knife in top condition.


Wash by Hand: After each use, wash the knife with warm water and a mild dish soap. Avoid using abrasive sponges or steel wool, which can damage the blade.

Dry Immediately: To prevent rust and water spots, thoroughly dry the knife with a soft towel immediately after washing.

Avoid Dishwashers: Dishwashers can cause the knife to knock against other items, potentially damaging the edge and handle. The harsh chemicals and high temperatures can also harm the blade and handle materials.


Regular Honing: Use a honing rod to realign the blade’s edge before each use. This keeps the knife sharp and ensures optimal performance.

Professional Sharpening: Depending on usage, have your Santoku knife professionally sharpened once or twice a year. This maintains the correct blade angle and sharpness.

DIY Sharpening: If you’re comfortable doing it yourself, use a whetstone with appropriate grit levels. Start with a coarser grit for sharpening and finish with a finer grit for honing.


Knife Block or Sheath: Store your knife in a knife block or use a protective sheath to prevent the blade from becoming dull or damaged.

Magnetic Strip: A magnetic strip is an excellent way to store knives. It keeps the blade away from other utensils, reducing the risk of damage.

Avoid Loose Storage: Don’t store your Santoku knife loosely in a drawer with other utensils. This can cause the blade to become dull or damaged.

Handling and Usage

Cut on Suitable Surfaces: Use a cutting board made of wood or plastic. Hard surfaces like glass or stone can dull the knife’s edge quickly.

Proper Cutting Technique: Use a slicing motion rather than chopping. The Santoku knife is designed for slicing, dicing, and mincing.

Handle with Care: Always be mindful of the sharp edge and handle the knife with respect to avoid accidents.

Periodic Maintenance

Check for Wear and Tear: Regularly inspect your knife for signs of wear or damage. Address any issues promptly to prevent further deterioration.

Oil the Handle: If your Santoku knife has a wooden handle, periodically apply a small amount of mineral oil to keep it from drying out and cracking.

By following these care and storage guidelines, you can ensure that your Santoku knife remains a reliable and efficient tool in your kitchen for years to come.