Best Electric Knife

Is there a reason to own an electric knife? I think there is. Electric knives take the place of many loose knives and can be effortless and convenient to use. I recently had a conversation with my dear friend “J” about this very subject. Her words: “ We use our Cuisinart electric knife to carve turkeys and roasts. My Mother and mother- in-law always use the Cuisinart electric knives. I highly recommend the brand we use.”

“J” prepares a lot of meat. I consider her an expert. She throws incredible parties and her food is always outstanding. She has worn out several electric knives over the years. She always returns to purchase the Cuisinart because it has worked so well for her.

 

I have had my electric knife for many years and it is still reliable. After visiting with “J”, the thought occurred to me that should this electric knife finally wear out at some point, what would I do. I know most definitely I would purchase another. I began to research the options available in my current brand, which is a Moulinex, as well as the options available across other brands.

ProductPicturePriceWarranty (years)Blade SetsSwitch/Safety Press/PullWeight lbs.Safety GuardStorage
Waring WEK200 Cordless Electric Carving KnifeHigh11Press/NA3.7YesYes
Kenwood KN650 True Electric Carving Knife
High11Press/NA1.6YesNo
Toastmaster 6102 Electric Carving KnifeMid11Press/NA1.8YesNo
Cuisinart CEK-40 Electric KnifeMid32Press/Yes3.0YesYes
Kalorik EM 41258 BK Quick Slice Electric Knife Carving SetMid11Pull/No2.3YesYes
Oster FPSTEK2803B Electric KnifeLow11Press/No1.1NoYes
Hamilton Beach 74250 Carve 'n Set Electric Knife with CaseLow11Pull/No2.3YesYes
Hamilton Beach Electric Carving Knife with CaseLow11Pull/No2.3NoYes
BLACK+DECKER EK700 9-Inch Electric Carving KnifeLow11Press/Yes1.6YesNo
Proctor Silex 74311 Easy Slice Electric KnifeLow11Pull/No1.8YesNo

 

electric_knifeMy first choice would be to replace it with one of the same brand and style. Unfortunately and surprisingly, I have found my electric knife is not available in the United States. What? It’s true!  It’s a French brand electric knife that I received as a wedding gift. It is available across Europe and in Canada. Until now, I hadn’t even taken notice of the brand. I obviously have not appreciated the gift as much as I should have. It is unlikely that I will drive to Canada to replace my knife with the same brand.

I have used this knife rigorously. Of course, I have used it to slice a variety of meat. I can easily slice tri-tip, flank steak or thinly slice beef roast for French dip sandwiches. We have used it to carve the Thanksgiving turkey, many roasts and ham. It slices crusty thick bread as well as soft loaves of bread beautifully. It cuts through melons and quickly cuts corn off of the cob. I hate to admit this but I have also used my electric knife to cut foam padding for chairs. I’ll remember not to do that again.

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Several design details that I appreciate about my knife are the shape of the handle and placement of the switch. There is an actual handle built in that is separate from the base holding the motor. The switch is on top of the handle and is to be pressed in by the thumb. Pressing to slice while pressing on the switch works well. My knife weighs 1½ pounds, is very light and is easy to use.

I have reviewed three knives with the distinct shape similar to the one I currently own. Though I love the shape and the fact that they all have an actual handle, the prices are high to very high. The other concern I have with these particular models is that they are covered by a one-year warranty. Considering the price, I would have hoped for a better warranty.

41jLocCCxyLThe most expensive model I have reviewed is the Waring Cordless Electric knife. It’s the heaviest at 3.7 pounds and you must remember to charge it prior to using the knife. If you were traveling for a catering job or working a large barbeque and were unsure of the availability of the outlets, investing in this knife may be appropriate. Your preparation checklist will have to include charging the knife. For at home use, this investment did not seem necessary. Nor did this knife appear to be as convenient as a corded knife.

The remaining two on my list with design and handles similar to mine are both covered under a one-year warranty. They are also priced at the high end of the knives. After considering the pros and cons, I chose to recommend the forth knife on my list which is the Cuisinart.  

I have come to the conclusion that if price were not an issue and I were to replace my electric knife today, I would purchase the Cuisinart CEK-40 electric knife. It’s not as outrageously priced as some electric knives and it has a nice three-year warranty. After holding this knife, I feel it is very similar to holding an actual carving knife.

The switch, located underneath the handle, was easily depressed with my index finger while holding the knife. This knife is designed with a guard to prevent your hand from slipping forward into the blades. The Cuisinart electric knife has the best warranty. Also, knowing my friend “J” actually uses this knife regularly and has used it successfully for years is encouraging. This information helps support my theory. I am confident in making this purchase myself and recommending it to you.

Why You Should Trust Me

I can’t imagine not owning an electric knife as we use ours frequently. This has become a bit of a challenge for me knowing that my knife is not easily replaced. I have considered what I like about my knife and what others appreciate about their knives. I have investigated the complaints I have heard or read about other knives. I have also had conversations with people I trust, who I know use their electric knives as much as I do.

After researching electric knives, I was surprised to discover that my first instinct to purchase a replacement that had a similar shape to mine was not the choice I actually made in the end. I thought that the shape and style of my current knife would be the most important aspects. This was a great exercise go through for you and for me. The most important aspects of the knife I would choose are cost, warranty and safety.

What to Look for in and Electric Knife

I mentioned earlier that the handle and switch on my electric knife work well for me. My handle design seems to be somewhat unique. My knife includes two serrated edge blades that interlock and snap into the handle. The blades are a nice length and there is a release button on the base that pops them out easily for cleaning. I use the same interlocking blades for every use.

There are no extra accessories with my knife. Of the knives I researched, several were designed with convenient cases. Electric knives may be plug-in appliances or battery powered with rechargeable or replaceable batteries. The rechargeable knife will either have a base charger or charging cord. My knife definitely has enough power, never falters and doesn’t overheat. It has a 5½-foot cord and a 7½-inch serrated blade set. Let’s look at the specific attributes of electric knives on the market today.

 

 

The Blade

electric knife blade sharpeningExpect the serrated edge blades to be very sharp and made of good quality stainless steal with very little flexibility. Expect them to lock together, fitting tightly together with no gapping. The two interlocking blades then lock into the base. The base should hold the blades securely until the release button is pressed.

Several knives offer two sets of blades. One set for bread and one set for meat or frozen items. Most blades normally measured from 7½ inches to 9 inches long along the serrated edge. As I mentioned earlier, my current knife has two interlocking 7½ inch blades that have worked well for me.  

Good quality stainless blades should last throughout the life of the knife. And should never or rarely require sharpening.  

The Handle

Expect the handle to fit your hand so that the on/off button can be easily depressed while attempting to cut your food. Expect the handle to be shaped ergonomically to keep your hand comfortably in position without allowing it to slip.

The handle should have a guard preventing your hand from slipping forward into the blade. The handles of several models are made from smooth plastic, which if your hand became wet or oily, would create difficulty in maintaining your grip. If your hands do become wet or oily, you should stop carving. Turn off the knife, unplug it, and wash your hands and clean the handle before beginning again.

The Switch

Is the switch easily and comfortably accessible? I found that most models have the switch underneath. Several knives are designed with switches that are pressed in with your index finger to keep the unit running. I held several knives with this design. The switch was easy to press while holding the knife.

Other knives actually required you to slide the switch back with your index finger and hold it back to keep the unit running. This was difficult for me to manage. I couldn’t hold that position for very long. I indicated in the chart of knives which type of switch each knife had because it was obvious to me that the pull and slide back switch was a little more difficult to use.

Some units offered a safety lock on the switch that prevents you from accidentally turning it on at an inappropriate time. This is another note I placed in the chart.  I think these additional safety measures are very valuable and necessary.     

The Cord or Battery

Expect the cord to be long enough to be kept out of the way. My cord is 5 ½ feet long. I can easily work around my kitchen island. A charging cord should detach from your knife so it is not dangling during operation. If you choose a rechargeable battery model, the battery should hold a good long charge. If they happen to be replaceable batteries, the unit will not have as much power as a corded knife, however, battery units could be convenient for events where outlets are scarce.

 

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After thoroughly reviewing ten knives, I have come to the conclusion that I would purchase and recommend to you the Cuisinart CEK 40 Electric Knife if price were not an issue.

First of all, holding the knife was comfortable despite the weight. My hand stayed in position easily. The handle is made of a dull finished plastic. It not only looks like my regular black handled knives, it also did not seem as slippery as the knives made of polished plastic.  

The switch was located in a comfortable position underneath the handle. The switch has a safety lock to prevent engagement of the blade. If your hand were to slip forward, the button would be released and disengage the knife. I was able to reach the switch and depress it comfortably with my index finger without feeling it would be over-taxing to hold in place while cutting.

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The Cuisinart CEK 40 Electric knife comes with two sets of blades. One set for bread and one for carving. The knives are heavy, sturdy and sharp. They locked tightly together and securely into the handle. I took some time to inspect the Cuisinart knife and was surprised at the stiffness and strength of the blades. I don’t think you could even slip a piece of paper between the interlocking blades on this particular knife. Therefore, I would expect the Cuisinart blades cut very smoothly rather than chewing their way through your food.

This knife has a four-foot cord and a storage butcher block, which can be placed in a drawer or set on your counter. The fact that the blades are not loose in a drawer is a nice added safety benefit. I also appreciate the fact that all of the parts are kept securely together. You never have to wonder where all of the pieces are stored.

This is the only unit with a three-year warranty. The security of a three-year warranty along with the fact it has a locking switch, a hand guard, a press in switch, two blade options and a storage unit moved this knife to the top of my list.

 

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I chose to recommend the Black and Decker EK700 electric knife if money is an issue. There are a few reasons why I chose this model from the least expensive group. The Black and Decker EK700 is a lightweight unit for simple tasks. It has a comfortable handle that offers a safety guard to protect your hand from the knife in case your hand slips during use. The handle has a nice shape, which provides an easy grip for large or small hands.

This knife is also one of the lighter knives, which will help with maneuverability. It will be less tiring to use. It is very close to the weight of the electric knife that I currently own. I do appreciate that aspect of my knife.  

61lkeNDtnpL._SL1500_The Black and Decker knife also includes a safety lock on the switch. The switch can be locked in the off position to protect you from unintended starts. The switch is easily pressed in to engage the blades when you are ready to cut.

There were several other models in this price group that I compared to the Black and Decker. Surprisingly, there were knives that did not have the hand guard. It is the little lip in front of your index finger to protect your finger and or hand from siding into the engaged knife blades. My current knife has a separate handle so the hand guard was not a feature I had noticed until I started investigating electric knives. Now that I see it and understand the design, I can’t imagine purchasing this style of knife without a hand guard.   

Another design feature that I compared was the switch. Several knives were designed with a switch that requires you to pull and slid back with your index finger to engage the motor and blades. This switch design was very difficult to use. The safety and design issues of the others brought me back to the Black & Decker and its ease of use

The blades are durable stainless steel. They have a little more flexibility then the higher end models but they interlocked tightly together and fit securely into the handle. The blades are easily ejected for cleaning. This unit also has a nice long five-foot cord. It is important to keep in mind that this, like so many others, has a one-year warranty. The price of this unit is reasonable therefore a one-year warranty was not a deal breaker for me.

Surprisingly, the flexibility of the blades in Black and Decker model were very similar to the blades I have in my current electric knife. As I have said before, I love my knife and it has worked well for me for years. Replacing it with this Black and Decker model would not be out of the question.

I do wish this model had a small case or storage solution, but in the end, the safety features trumped the storage issue.

 

In Conclusion

I have enjoyed investigating electric knives and discovering important design and safety features. Hopefully, I have helped you determine specific factors that require consideration when purchasing an electric knife. As I mentioned earlier, I would have definitely purchased the knife designed most similar to my current knife. However, after weighing the price, design, safety and features, I completely surprised myself with completely different choice.

91uPG7jxK4L._SL1500_We did not review electric fillet knives, though there are several designs that may be appropriate for both filleting and regular slicing. If you have experience with electric fillet knives, please share the details.

If you are able to manage the switch that is designed to slide back to start the knife, you will be happy with the Hamilton Beach and Kalorik models. They were not too heavy and do come with a nice case for storage. As you can see from the table, the Kalork and the Hamilton Beach 50 also have hand guards.

Once you develop the habit of utilizing your electric knife wherever possible, you will wonder what you did without it. It makes quick work of slicing and dicing in our kitchen. There are not many food items that cannot be effectively prepared with an electric knife.

As always, we would love to hear from you. Ask questions or share your insights and experiences with us. Please feel free to comment here or contact us through Facebook or e-mail.

Enjoy your day!

Barbara Deraas

Barbara Deraas

As a cooking enthusiast and advocate of healthy living, join me in creating delicious, nutritious recipes that energize and fortifies you.
Barbara Deraas

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