Keeping your kitchen knives in tip-top shape

A hand puts a knife back into a knife block.

Whether you’ve invested in a quality knife set or are using hand-me-downs from your parents, your kitchen blades will last longer and serve you better if you take proper care of them.

We asked Sue Hoff, senior principal engineer for products at Amway, including iCook™ knives, to share her five tips to ensure your knives perform at their peak for many years.

Keep your knives sharp

Did you know that you’re more likely to accidentally cut yourself with a dull knife than a sharp one? A sharp knife easily does what it’s supposed to do, slice through your food with little effort.

“Sharp knives are safe knives,” Hoff said. “If your knife is really dull, you are going to start pushing, you are going to lose control, and you could cut your finger.”

It’s good to sharpen them before each use. You can use sharpening stones, pull-through sharpeners or electric sharpeners.

They are not for your knives with serrated edges, however. Those don’t need frequent sharpening, and when they do it should be done by a professional.

Hands are shown cutting a tomato on a wood cutting board. Words on the image read: Wood c utting boards will keep your knives sharper for longer.

Choose your cutting board wisely

When selecting a cutting board, choose a surface that has some resilience, such as wood or plastic.

Glass, metal or granite surfaces will cause your blade to chip or bend and increase the likelihood it will become dull.

Hands are shown washing a knife in a sink. The words on the image read: Hand wash and dry after each use.

Hand wash your knives

Though it might be tempting to throw your knives into the dishwasher for a quick cleaning, you are putting them at risk.

“Never ever put knife ware in the dishwasher,” Hoff said. “The agitation can damage the blade. Some detergents can be very harsh, and if detergents stick on the blade, corrosion can occur.”

A dishwasher subjects them extreme heat and moisture along with a lot of jostling. Knives can corrode and edges chip when they’re knocked around. And if the handle is wood? Ugh.

Clean knives immediately after use

This is another step to avoid corrosion. Knives should be cleaned as quickly as possible, especially if they have sticky or salty residue on them.

Once you’re done slicing and dicing, wash them with mild soap, such as Amway Home™ Dish Drops™ Dishwashing Liquid, and use a towel to dry them well.

Hands are shown applying oil to the edge of a knife with a basting brush. Words on the image read: When storing your knives, a little vegetable oil on the blade can prevent rust.

Store your knives appropriately

If you spend more time at restaurants than in your kitchen, consider treating your knife blades with oil when not in heavy use.

Brushing a light coat of vegetable oil along the blade will prevent rusting. (This tip is especially useful in coastal climates with salty air.)

When storing knives, keep them in a tray or block to protect against injury and ensure the blades will not be damaged by rough contact with utensils. And never store the knives in a moist environment.

Learn more

Want to learn more about which knives are used for what purpose? Read Know your knives: Essential knives every kitchen needs. And to learn more about the iCook™ knives and cookware offered by Amway, visit the website for Amway US or Amway Canada.

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