Chicago Cutlery 18-Piece Knife Set

Last updated date: July 2, 2019

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We looked at the top Knife Sets and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Knife Set you should buy.

Overall Take

If you want the very best value when purchasing your new knife set, look no further than the Chicago Cutlery 18-piece knife set. Chicago Cutlery's knife sets are popular for a reason. This set includes all the basics at a very affordable price and includes a block that will match many home decors. In our analysis of 30 expert reviews, the Chicago Cutlery Chicago Cutlery 18-Piece Set placed 6th when we looked at the top 10 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note August 1, 2019:
Checkout The Best Knife Set for a detailed review of all the top knife sets.

Expert Summarized Score
4 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
1,177 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
A low-priced set of unbeatable value that is very popular.
- BestReviews
Taper grind edge technology which ensures precise chopping and cutting
- The Kitchen Guy
These are two nice bonuses that came with the package. The sharpening steel works very well for keeping the knives sharp, and the wooden block looks very nice on my counter.
- Best Fillet Knife Reviews
They’re comfortable and fit in your hand well. All of the knives are full tang as well, so they’re highly durable.
- Knife Planet
What experts didn't like
Uneven appearance when placed on the block
- The Kitchen Guy
This is just a small complaint, but it would have been nice to have a set of kitchen shears included with this package. They’re very useful to have on hand and are often included in knife sets. Most people already have a pair on hand, though, so in the end it’s not that big a deal for me.
- Best Fillet Knife Reviews
We were a little disappointed that this set did not include a boning knife.
- Knife Planet

From The Manufacturer

Just as an insignia is the mark of military rank, Insignia Steel cutting tools are the mark of a pro. This 18-piece Chicago Cutlery knife set has the knives that professionals rely on for accurate, efficient food prep. And, with a satin finish, the knives are pleasing to both the eye and the hand. This set makes a great gift, one that will be used regularly - not relegated to the back of the pantry. 18-piece set includes 3" peeler, 3-1/4" parer, 6" boning, 5" utility, 8" serrated bread, 7" Santoku, 8" slicer, 8" chef, shears, eight 4-1/2" steak knives, block with in-block sharpener.

Overall Product Rankings

1. Wusthof 7-Piece Set
Overall Score: 9.8
Expert Reviews: 3
2. J.A. Henckels Twin Signature 19-Piece Set
Overall Score: 9.5
Expert Reviews: 2
3. Victorinox 4-Piece Set with Fibrox Handles
Overall Score: 9.2
Expert Reviews: 4
4. Cuisinart 15-Piece Set C77SS
Overall Score: 9.1
Expert Reviews: 4
5. Ginsu Gourmet 19-Piece Set
Overall Score: 9.0
Expert Reviews: 1
6. Chicago Cutlery 18-Piece Knife Set
Overall Score: 8.6
Expert Reviews: 4
7. Shun 3-Piece Knife Set
Overall Score: 8.1
Expert Reviews: 1
8. J.A. Henckels Forged 18-Piece Set
Overall Score: 7.8
Expert Reviews: 2
9. Mercer Culinary Renaissance 6-Piece Set
Overall Score: 7.8
Expert Reviews: 2
10. Stone Boomer Stainless Steel 14-Piece
Overall Score: 7.7
Expert Reviews: 3

An Overview On Knife Sets

A good set of knives can last a while. In fact, you may buy a set when you move into your first apartment and find that you still have it when you’re ready to upgrade to your first home. But every knife has a shelf life, which means you’ll eventually have to trade that old set in for a new one.

There are many factors to consider when you’re shopping for knives. Many knife sets come in wood blocks fitted with slots perfectly shaped to fit each knife. Do you need a block? That depends. Some homeowners prefer to have their knives neatly tucked away in a drawer when not in use. Others prefer those magnetic strips that hang on a wall to hold the knives in place.

The benefit of a knife block is it turns your cutlery into an attractive part of your kitchen décor. You can find a wood type and color that perfectly matches your own kitchen, making it an enhancement. But beyond storing your knives, you’ll also need to consider the type and quality of the set you’re buying.

At the very least, you’ll likely need steak knives and perhaps a utility knife for your kitchen. But if you’re a true chef, there’s a wide range of knives you’ll need, including those that can help with peeling fruits and vegetables or cutting bread without tearing it. One nice upgrade is sharpening steel to keep your knives in peak condition for many years. Many knife sets also come with kitchen shears for the many times you’ll need them.

Of course, the quality of knives is also important. Look for well-known brands like J.A. Henckels and Wusthof, which have established themselves as leaders in their industry. When a manufacturer develops a reputation as having a commitment to excellence, you’ll know you’re getting a product that’s built to last.

Kristin Forte/Simplemost Media

DWYM Fun Fact

If you’re planning to give a knife set as a gift, you may want to attach a penny to it. An old superstition says that knives as gifts are bad luck, as they sever the bonds of friendship. A common workaround is to attach a penny, which the recipient then gives back as payment, in essence saying that it was a purchase, not a gift. Whether you believe this superstition or not, your recipient may, so it’s likely best to attach a penny just in case. At the very least, you’ll be able to share the superstition and have a laugh about it.

The Knife Set Buying Guide

  • Chances are one of the top factors in choosing a knife set for your kitchen is appearance. If you’re looking for a light-colored wood block, the J.A. Henckels Premio 18-piece block set and the Chicago Cutlery 18-piece Insignia steel knife set are both worth considering. If a walnut-colored storage block is better suited to your décor, take a look at the Wusthof Classic Ikon 7-piece knife set. The Victorinox 4-piece knife set doesn’t come with a knife block, making it a better pick for families that prefer to keep their knives in drawers.
  • You can’t go wrong with a classic, and the Wusthof has a look that blends with every type of décor. But the Chicago Cutlery set is popular as well, perhaps in part due to its versatility.
Kristin Forte/Simplemost Media
  • Once you’ve gotten past the aesthetics, it’s time to look at the actual cutlery each set offers. The fullest range of knives comes with the J.A. Heckels and Chicago Cutlery sets. In each set, you’ll get a parer, utility knife, serrated bread knife, Santoku, chef’s knife, steak knives, shears and a sharpener. But if you only need the basics, the Wusthof Classic set includes a parer, utility knife, bread knife, shears and honing steel. However, you can buy additional items, like steak knives, to slide into the empty slots in the block.
  • The Victorinox set is fairly basic, with no shears, honing steel or storage block. But you can buy plenty of other items to go with the set, so this may be just the start of your collection.
  • Before you invest in a knife set, you likely want to make sure it will last. The J.A. Henckels set offers superb quality, but the Wusthof set is also durable, thanks to its tough handle and laser-tested edge.
Kristin Forte/Simplemost Media
  • The lowest-priced set in the bunch is the Chicago Cutlery set, which is a great deal with 18 knives and a block included for just over $100. The Victorinox four-piece set is slightly more expensive than that, with the J.A. Henckels 18-piece set retailing for more than $200. The Wusthof set is the most expensive, in the $300-$400 range and only includes seven knives.