The most durable woods for knife handles

When you think of knives, what comes to mind first? Is it the beauty of light refracting off the blade, or is its sophisticated look that catches your eye? Most people would answer that the blade is the most impressive about every knife, but that is only if you haven’t appreciated a quality craftsmanship of the knife handle’s.

Do you know how hardwood stacks up against softwood and what type of wood is best for an expert grip?

To quickly answer that question, hardwood is typically denser and more durable, where as softwood is seldom used for knife handles. However, stabilized wood is often used instead of hardwood – it is a wood that has been through a difficult process. Hardwood and stabilized wood are what you can expect to see in your culinary range.

As you can no doubt see, the handle of a knife plays a pretty important role, so you need to educate yourself on the best wood for the job.


This is one of our favorite materials for knives, and you will see it often in our catalogs. Pakkawood is an engineered wood that is excellent for frequent use and thus perfect for knife handles. It can come in various colors, but we prefer the look of natural timber such as oak or chestnut.

What makes Pakkawood great for kitchen tools is its dense composition, water-resistant properties, and durability.


The majority of our knives have a Rosewood handle because it is beautiful but strong and hardy. It is a premium wood with excellent durability, rich color, and fragrant scent, making it a sought after material for any expertly crafted tool – but especially knives.

Maple Burl

Maple Burl is commonly used in knife manufacturing and comes from, you guessed it, a big maple leaf tree. Despite its strength, Maple Burl must be stabilized so that it doesn’t crack from regular use. It can also easily be dyed in quite a few colors, appealing to some chefs.


Ebony is rare in everyday kitchen knives but more common in specialty items due to the heavy price tag. It’s lustrous; almost jet black appearance is what makes it so unique, along with its toughness. While durability may be one of ebony’s significant advantages, it can be a little harder to work with and therefore takes longer to shape.


Everyone has heard of oak wood – it is versatile, visually appealing, and abundantly available. It is a traditional material for knives and cutting tools; there will be oak in your toolbox. Oak is regularly used to make knife handles as glue easily adheres to it, making the process of fixing a tang in place effortless. Its affordability is another vote in its favor.


There are many wood varieties that can be used for knife handles, but our personal favorites are Pakkawood and Rosewood – you can view and purchase any of our collections online. Ultimately you need to consider three factors when deciding which handle works best for you; is it durable, is it comfortable to use, and does it look good in your kitchen?

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