Whether you’re an amateur or seasoned cook, we all need our trusted kitchen knives to make food prep tasks easier.
From chef’s knives to steak and bread knives, it can be tricky to store your collection of tools safely and neatly. This is especially the case if you have limited storage space, or looking for space-saving hacks to organize kitchen cabinets. In addition, knowing how to store kitchen knives properly, will keep your tools in top condition, last longer, and improve their overall performance.
Luckily, there are plenty of knife storage ideas to suit your needs and lifestyle. So if you want a clutter-free, organized space, here are 7 clever ways to store kitchen knives.
Just avoid these 7 mistakes which are ruining your kitchen knives.
1. Knife block
This is the more traditional way to store your knives and keep them organized. Not only do they offer individual slots for easy access, but ensure they are well presented on your countertop.
Typically, blocks are designed from high-quality wood, with up to 25 slots for your expensive knife set. Or you can opt for the tempered glass blocks if you want to see your collection. Glass blocks like this Mercer Culinary M20000 Genesis 6-Piece Forged Knife Block Set ($159, Amazon), will make a sleek, modern addition to any kitchen.
Alternatively, if you’re limited on countertop space, you can opt for narrow, vertical knife blocks. Sets like this Randalfy Kitchen Knife Set with Block ($37, Amazon), are less bulky, and will hold your kitchen knives in a straight line, rather than a square or rectangular shape.
Just ensure you keep your knife block clean at all times, as these can easily pick up bacteria. The best way to clean inside a wooden knife block is to turn it upside down, and shake it to remove any crumbs or loose particles. Then, soak a small brush or pipe cleaner in soapy water before cleaning inside the knife slots.
Next, simply use a damp cloth with soapy water to scrub the outside of the wooden knife block, to keep it looking brand new. Never put your block in the dishwasher, or soak directly in soapy water, as this will damage the wood.
2. Magnetic knife block
Alternatively, you can opt for magnetic knife blocks that have no slots at all. As the name suggests, these are wooden blocks that have a hidden, double-sided, magnetic suction. Then you simply place your knives or utensils to the sides of the block, rather than inside it.
This is a clever, non-slip way to hold your knives, without cluttering your kitchen counter. Plus, these magnetic wooden blocks are easy to clean, and maintain.
You can even purchase blocks with an acrylic shield for extra protection, much like this Kitchen Magnetic Knife Block with Acrylic Shield ($35, Amazon). These are essential for households with children or pets, to prevent any potential accidents.
3. Magnetic wall knife bar
Magnetic wall knife bars are ideal for compact kitchens, and a firm favorite among professional chefs. Not only are these bars an attractive way to display your knives, but a real space-saver. It’s also easier to access your knives for those quick prep tasks.
These are usually made from magnetic, stainless steel that are strong enough to hold up your knives, scissors or any other kitchen utensil safely. In addition, these are considered more hygienic than knife blocks, as they are easy to clean and maintain. Simply wipe clean with a soapy cloth, and wipe dry.
Before mounting onto your wall, always follow the installation guidelines, and ensure they are out of reach from children or pets.
4. Knife dock-in drawer storage
If you don’t want to display your knife set, or wish to be child-friendly, you can opt for a knife dock-in drawer storage. These handy trays come with flexible dividers made from a food-safe cork and rubber composite, and can hold up to 16 knives safely in place.
Designed for smaller kitchens, knife dock-in storage can fit easily into any standard drawer and free up counterspace. Typically made from sustainable bamboo, the carved grooves hold the knives securely in place, while the handle support makes it easy to grab the knives easily. What’s more, this is a simple way to store and organize your set neatly — without cluttering your surfaces.
We can recommend this Utoplike in-Drawer Knife Block Bamboo Kitchen Knife Drawer ($25, Amazon), to keep your collection in order.
5. Leather knife roll bag
Another ‘out-of-sight’ way to store your kitchen knives is to wrap them in a leather roll bag. Leather bags contain a custom slot for each knife to be inserted horizontally to protect the blade. Then simply roll the bag, and secure it securely with the straps and buckles.
Designed to fit your knife collection, these rolls are also portable to travel or even take to family cook-outs. In addition, bags such as this Dalstrong Carrier Bag Case ($147, Amazon), are heavy-duty, durable and easy to spot clean with a damp cloth. Bear in mind, if you have a large set of knives, these may not be so practical as they won’t fit snugly.
Although leather rolls on the expensive side, they do make an attractive, long-term storage solution for your collection. If you want to know more care tips, check out how to clean leather.
6. No-slot knife block holder
We all know about the knife blocks with slots, however the no-slot knife block is becoming a popular option. Instead of solid wood, these are designed with removable flex rods, where you can slot kitchen knives safely.
Best of all, the block can fit any size blade, and it’s easy to grab and store, without the fuss of fitting it into a slot. These also come in various sizes to suit your kitchen, and free up precious countertop space.
Most no-slot knife blocks are two-tiered like this Mantello Knife Block- Universal Knife Holder ($34, Amazon), to organize your set. However, bear in mind that the rods may not be strong enough to handle super sharp knives which can cause the rods to flake off.
In any case, you can remove the flex rods that are top-rack dishwasher safe, for easy sanitization.
7. Novelty knife holder
If you’re after a unique, quirky way to display your knives, you can opt for novelty knife holders. These range from knife sets that are male characters, or this Spartan Knife Block ($98, Amazon), in the design of a Spartan Warrior.
These are usually made from bamboo, wood or acrylic, and can hold up to six kitchen knives. Not only are they a creative way of storing knives, but they make a great talking point for when guests visit. Just keep out of reach from young children or pets who may be intrigued!
More from Tom's Guide
- For step-by-step instructions, see how to sharpen a knife
- Check out the best food processors
- To help with food prep, here the the best cutting boards