Our Search For The Best Camping Chef Knife

If you’re looking for the best camping kitchen knife set, you’ve come to the right place. In this blog post, we’ll share with you our top picks for the best camping kitchen knife sets, as well as some tips on how to choose the right set for your needs.

Here are a Few Great Camp Cooking Knives that have their Place at the Campfire

Good food needs good tools, even if it isn’t in the kitchen. The older we get the more we find we need good food on our camping trips, so we put together this list of our favorite outdoor-friendly knives to cook with.

Most of these knives we used with a single cast iron pan, grill, and stump. Sometimes there was a cutting board when we had room to pack it along, but we also went out for some side-by-side testing for the initial round of picks, and that involved a picnic table by necessity.

That means that each of the knives on here has been used beyond the bounds of what a regular kitchen knife is used for, which brings us to the crux of the matter: what makes a knife a camping chef knife?

Related: Best Dishwasher-Safe Knife Sets

When buying best camping kitchen knife set, consider these 7 factors

Knives are necessary. What makes you choose it?

You should consider the following features…

1. Functionality

If I were to ask you one question, what are you going to do with your knife?

When all you’re going to do with a 7″ camping knife is cut cheese, you shouldn’t spend two hundred dollars on it.

Swiss army knives aren’t suitable for bushwhacking, either, since they have such a tiny blade.

2. Durability

It may be more expensive and weigh more to choose good quality materials, but they will last much longer.

Knife blades, handle materials, and sheaths (for fixed blade knives) are all affected by this.

3. Material

Stainless steel and high carbon steel are the two most common materials used to make knife blades.

Stainless steel is stronger than carbon steel but softer than it. It resists rust and corrosion. Hence, it will lose its edge faster, but it will be easier to sharpen.

You’ll need to maintain high-carbon steel blades so they don’t rust, but they are stronger and harder than stainless steel.

You can choose from a wide variety of synthetic, metal, and natural materials for the handle.

You can tell a lot about a knife by its feel in your hand and your personal preference.

4. Weight

The weight of every ounce matters if you’re backpacking, but car camping is unlikely to be an issue.

5. Price

At different price points, there are lots of options when it comes to camping knives.

Steel and workmanship are generally more expensive, but as you can see, some great knives are available at affordable prices.

Cheap knives should not be bought just because they’re cheap.

Eventually I broke it when I used it to cut more than cucumbers.

6. Legalities

Knives are regulated differently in different countries.

In the UK, it’s illegal to carry anything longer than 3 inches in public, including fixed blade knives, lock knives, and folding knives.

Depending on your country or state, you may need to take special precautions to use a camping knife safely and legally.

7. How It Feels

I know it’s hard to convey this in writing, but it’s definitely worth mentioning.

Knives fit differently in different hands, as our fingers and hands are all different sizes and shapes.

Often, reading reviews by other users can help you figure out whether a knife is the right choice for you, but you’ll never know for sure until you actually try it out.

Here Are the Best Camping kitchen knife set

Off-Grid Grizzly
CJRB Silex
Messermeister Adventure Chef Folding Knife
Condor Bush Slicer
Civic Kepler
OKC Camp Plus Kitchen Folders

1. Of-Grid Grizzly

Our Top Pick
Best Camping kitchen knife set

Off-Grid Knives – Grizzly V2 Camp Kitchen Chef Knife


  • Blade Material: Sandvik 14C28N
  • Handle Material: Alloy Steel
  • Blade Length: 6.13 Inches

The Grizzly’s clip point or reverse tanto design is influenced by the traditional “Bunka” Japanese chef knife. The wide blade and triangle shaped tip offers excellent cutting of fish and meats as well as vegetables.

Overall Length:12.75”
Blade Length:6.125”
Blade Steel:AUS-8
Blade Shape:Reverse tanto
Blade Grind:Flat
Handle Length:4.75”
Handle Material:G-10
Weight:11.1 oz (12.9 w/ sheath)
Made in:Taiwan
Designer:Cary Orefice

It’s surprising how smooth the Grizzly cuts, but that’s to be expected with Off-Grid Knives.

These people have a good understanding of blade geometry. It shouldn’t be surprising, then, that it cuts better than any high-end santoku I’ve ever used since the Grizzly was designed for food prep.

You have something that truly feels like a respectable kitchen knife when you combine the meaty handle with a bit of thumb ramp consideration.

As a camping item, the AUS-8 steel is a slight drawback, but this actually works in its favor. A good edge is taken with it and it resists corrosion well.

I just feel that it’s a bit out-of-date at this point. In terms of comfort and cutting ability, we found the Grizzly to be one of the best.

Even though it comes in a Kydex sheath, it doesn’t have a belt loop, and that’s because it wasn’t designed to be used as a hiking knife or for cutting trees.

It’s because the edge is thin that it cuts so well; therefore, you should keep the edge within the range of food preparation.

Despite this, the spine and handle should be able to take a bit of abuse.

2. Cjrb Silex

2nd Pick
Best Camping kitchen knife set

CJRB CUTLERY Tactical Knife


  • Blade Material: Alloy Steel
  • Handle Material: Fiberglass/li>
  • Blade Shape: Clip Point

The Silax has a blade constructed from our proprietary AR-RPM9 steel that perfectly blends edge retention, corrosion resistance, and ease of sharpening.

Overall Length:9.75”
Blade Length:5.25”
Blade Steel:AR-RPM9
Blade Shape:Modified Wharncliffe
Blade Grind:Flat
Handle Length:4.5”
Handle Material:G-10
Weight:4.9 oz
Made in:China
Designer:Dylan Mallery

I would use the Silex in my kitchen every day, although it’s not chef knife sized. There is a great edge with manageable steel on this lightweight and balanced knife.

Camping chef knives are good because of their tough steel and good edge stability, which makes them easy to maintain, especially on longer trips.

The knife itself is great, but I love the whole package. The use of food prep is not limited to food preparation. Despite the knife’s relative small size, it can do a tremendous amount of work due to its blade shape, which creates such a strong tip.

Though the edge isn’t as well done as the edge on most of the other knives on this list, I’m more likely to pick this up than the majority of the other picks.

3. Messermeister Adventure Chef Folding Knife

3rd Pick
Best Camping kitchen knife set

Messermeister Overland Chef 8” Chef’s Knife


  • Blade Material: Nitro-B Steel (62 HRC)
  • Handle Material: Ultra-rough raw canvas Micarta handle
  • Blade Edge: Plain

Overland Chef knives are built to be rugged & versatile, designed for any task around the campsite. Handcrafted in Maniago, Italy, they also include a hidden bottle opener in the butt of the handle for your convenience.

Overall Length:13.5”
Blade Length:6.0”
Blade Steel:1.4116
Blade Shape:Western chef
Blade Grind:Flat
Handle Length:7.25”
Handle Material:Maple wood or linen Micarta
Weight:7.6 oz
Sheath:None, but comes in a zipper pouch
Made in:China
Designer:Adam Glick

Although I am not a big fan of the knife on this list that is specifically marked as a chef’s knife, I appreciate the concept.

An 8-inch folding knife made with a liner lock is pretty janky, and the handle feels clunky, and the blade isn’t all that sharp.

Having said that, we’ve used the zip pouch and folding cutting board in the pouch a lot (it’s in most of the pictures).

In terms of weight and space, this is a pretty low investment option since it fits in boxes and backpacks easily.

In order to turn a knife into something truly useful, it does not require much modification. It is not difficult for the end user to perform some of these modifications (sharpening and stropping). I would probably keep this in my camping kit if it had a better handle and lock.

In its current form, it’s the only pick in this collection that resembles a western chef knife.

4. Condor Bush Slicer

4th Pick
Best Camping kitchen knife set

Condor Tool & Knife, Bush Slicer Knife


  • Blade Material: High Carbon Steel
  • Handle Material: Carbon Steel
  • Item Length: 18.25 inches

CARBON STEEL BLADES are made from 1095 High Carbon Steel and are heart treated and annealed to about 50-55 HRC. Edges are hand finished and polished to razor sharpness.

Overall Length:11.75”
Blade Length:6.5”
Blade Steel:1075
Blade Shape:Standard
Blade Grind:Convex
Handle Length:6.5”
Handle Material:Micarta
Weight:10.98 oz
Sheath:Kydex w/ leather strap
Made in:El Salvador
Designer:Julio Diez

Knife names with the word “slicer” are misleading. Rather than a lawnmower, it’s a bush chopper. When it comes to food, it can get tricky to slice, but there are so many edges to choose from that you can accomplish it one way or another.

You only need to take the Bush Slicer. This is the real benefit.

Wood is chopped and fire is started with this knife, and food might not look pretty when it’s cut, but it gets the job done. Cooking on the pan is so much fun with this chopping spatula with a tall blade that also doubles as a chopping edge.

The fact that 1075 steel is relatively easy to work with, and the convex grind here offers a large amount of it, makes me not feel particularly concerned about damaging the edge.

It’s possible to reprofile the blade at worst, but until then a hefty cleaver is the best tool for handling everything at campsites, from tent stakes to beef steaks.

5. Civic Kepler

5th Pick
Best Camping kitchen knife set

CIVIVI Kepler Fixed Blade Knife


  • Blade Material: Stainless Steel
  • Handle Material: Fiberglass
  • Blade Length: 4.48 Inches

Designed by Maciej Torbé. Wharncliffe 9CR18Mov blade has good corrosion resistance and easy to sharpen.

Overall Length:10.0”
Blade Length:4.5”
Blade Steel:9Cr18MoV
Blade Shape:Wharncliffe
Blade Grind:Compound flat
Handle Length:5.5”
Handle Material:G-10
Weight:7.7 oz (11.25 oz w/ sheath)
Made in:China
Designer:Maciej Torbe

Most of the reason I like the Kepler for food prep has to do with its shape. Getting a pinch grip is fairly comfortable with this, as there’s a lot of knuckle clearance. The Silax and Grizzly both offer similar advantages due to the cleaver’s shape.

It is merely the width of the edge grind that differs. Food prep was not the purpose of this device. Stainless steel gives it the advantage over the Bush Slicer in this regard. Even though the blade is sturdy and a surprisingly good chopper, it takes some work to get it to cut food with any kind of satisfaction.

When you cut onions or apples, it tends to turn your cut due to the wide angle of the grind. Nevertheless, the Kepler can handle a fairly rustic spread up to halfway respectable sandwiches if you are happy with a rustic spread..

6. OKC Camp Plus Kitchen Folders

6th Pick
NETGEAR C6 Gigabit MU-MIMO Wireless Router

Ontario Knife Co Camp Plus Chef Folder Box


  • Blade Material: Stainless Steel
  • Handle Material: Stainless Steel,
  • Blade Length: 5 Inches
Overall Length:9.51”
Blade Length:4.25”
Blade Steel:Stainless
Blade Grind:Chef (Hollow) Santoku (Flat) Bread (Flat)
Handle Length:5.5”
Handle Material:GFN
Made in:China

A backpack folder with a reasonable sized handle that fits the blade without complicating the grip is what Messermeister needed for their Adventure Chef knife.

For the price, they’re incredible knives, despite not being optimized for knuckle clearance.

In addition to being a great fit for fireside camping, Ontario’s Camp Plus kitchen folders also hit a lot of other points. Despite the thinness of the blades, they are made of soft steel, so rough terrain does not pose a threat.

Given their material and purpose, these knives are lightweight and pretty comfortable; and, taken together, all three of them are significantly cheaper than any other knife out there right now (except for the Old Hickory butcher knife that Ontario also manufactures).

These knives aren’t going to win any awards for performance, although those nameless stainless steel blades can take some serious pounding.

I end up using Ontario Knife Co. knives twice as much as anything else I own because of their ridiculously tough, cost-effective designs.

How to Care for Your Knife

Keeping knives sharp and ready to use requires a little TLC.

The blade needs to be cleaned and dried after each use and honed regularly to keep it sharp.

In order to prevent folding knives from stiffening up, they will need to be lubricated. A bit of mineral oil may also be beneficial if your knife has a carbon steel blade, particularly if it will be stored for a while.

FAQs of Best Camping Kitchen Knife Set

What is the recommended thickness of a camp knife?

Knives with a thickness of 3/16 – 1/4 of an inch are the best camp knives. The result will be a very flexible blade that will withstand abuse from wood chopping, battening, or prying without becoming rigid or stiff. The blades should also be stiff enough not to bend when used properly; flexing is a bad thing!

Are camp knives supposed to be sharp?

You will be able to accomplish more with your knife if it is sharper. A well-made blade will usually do the job on its own without much hassle, provided you don’t over sharpen it or make it too thin.

Camping with folding knives is a good idea?

When stowed properly, folding knives don’t expose a blade, making them convenient for camping since they are versatile and take up less space.

A folding knife can come in different sizes and shapes for various purposes, like the Opinel No6 with a 2.7-inch blade or the MIKI Sharp folding Japanese style camp kitchen knife with a 5.5-inch blade. Whether you are planning on using the camping knife for food preparation or cutting paracord, make sure you get the right one.

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