Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.
A mezzaluna is a type of knife with a thick, curved blade (its name means “half moon” in Italian). It most often has a single blade, but some models have two or even three blades. More traditional versions feature a handle at each end, but modern designs often feature a single handle or no handle at all. A mezzaluna knife is used with a rhythmic back-and-forth rocking motion to quickly reduce food to an even mince. They’re typically used for finely chopping and mincing herbs, aromatics, and vegetables but they can also be used for cutting cheese, nuts, chocolate, and meat.
In Italy, mezzaluna knives are traditionally used for making soffritto or pesto but these days, with multiple modernized versions available, their uses have expanded. Very large, single-blade models are even used for slicing pizza. For home cooks without professional-level knife skills, they're a great way to get even and consistent results more quickly and safely and without the need for a bulky, pricey food processor. Double-handled models offer a sharp chopping blade while eliminating the risk of accidentally cutting yourself. Here are our picks for the best mezzaluna knives currently available.
This classic, made-in-Italy mezzaluna from an established, family-owned kitchen supply business features a 9.5-inch stainless-steel blade with twin handles in smooth, shaped beechwood. It can be used in either a traditional back-and-forth rocking motion or an up-and-down chopping motion for mincing and chopping foods faster and more evenly than with a chef’s knife.
The blade is sturdy and can be resharpened as needed, while the ergonomic wood handles are comfortable to hold. While this knife doesn’t include any modern bells or whistles, it’s a durable and affordable kitchen tool that could become a reliable workhorse in your kitchen.
This single-handle, double-blade mezzaluna offers a lot of features for a low price. Designed for one-handed use, it’s primarily marketed as a salad chopper, to be used directly in a bowl for cutting up salad greens. But it can also be used on a chopping board for cutting up any type of food.
One potential problem with double-bladed mezzaluna knives is that food can tend to get stuck between the blades. This chopper solves that problem with a clever design: The two blades easily pop apart to release any trapped bits. Not only that, but the blades can be separated from each other and used separately so that it turns into a single-blade mezzaluna for slicing pizza, bread, pies, or cookies. It comes with guards for the sharp blades to protect them (and your fingers) from damage, and as a bonus, it’s dishwasher safe, for effortless cleanup.
This single-bladed, double-handled mezzaluna from a respected and venerable German knife-maker is a high-quality option. The carbon-steel blade is 9 inches long and laser cut for lightness and precision. The knob-shaped handles in hard plastic offer a secure and comfortable grip, and the smooth design has no nooks or crevices that might make it more difficult to clean.
Wüsthof also offers a double-bladed version of this mezzaluna knife, for even faster chopping, as well as an 8-inch, single-handed mezzaluna knife. All three are designed for quickly and finely mincing herbs and aromatics, but are less ideal for slicing larger foods.
This practical option from Joseph Joseph features a razor-sharp Japanese stainless-steel blade and twin handles in spring green, BPA-free plastic. The handles offer a balanced grip when mincing and chopping and then fold down over the blade when it’s not in use, doubling as a blade guard. This makes the knife super-compact for easy and safe storage in a drawer—protecting the cutting edge from nicks and damage and your hands from accidental cuts.
A potential disadvantage to this knife’s compact size is that it’s better suited for mincing and chopping herbs and vegetables but less ideal for slicing larger or harder foods.
This ergonomically designed, double-bladed chopper fits comfortably in the palm of your hand for one-handed mincing of herbs and vegetables. It’s from the same manufacturer as our pick for the best grater, and the sharp, rust-resistant stainless steel blades offer the same sharpness and durability.
The award-winning design allows you to easily flip the twin blades into the BPA-free handle for compact and safe storage, and they lock into place in either the retracted or cutting position for added stability. This mini mezzaluna chopper is also dishwasher safe, making cleanup just as easy as use.
From a commercial foodservice-supply manufacturer, this massive, heavy-duty mezzaluna knife is designed specifically for pizza cutting. The 20-inch stainless-steel blade has plastic handles at either end for a sturdy grip, and it’s long, sharp, and strong enough to slice even a large pizza in a neat single pass.
Slicing pizza with a rocker-style knife rather than a roller or shears has several advantages: It’s a snap to cut in a straight line across the pie with no wobbling, and the cut can be made with a single rocking motion rather than multiple back-and-forth passes.
A potential downside is that this blade is so large and sharp that those with small kitchens might find it difficult to store. But if you are a dedicated pizza lover or regularly make large batches of food that require precise cuts, the convenience of this sturdy knife can outweigh the drawback.
An ulu is a one-handed curved knife traditionally used by Alaskan Natives that is very similar to a single-blade, single-handle mezzaluna chopper and it can be used in the same way.
While some mezzaluna knives come with blade guards or retracting blades so that they can be easily stored while protecting the cutting edge, others don’t and that can make them a bit tricky to store. Another solution is to store your mezzaluna knife upright on your countertop. This rocker knife with a 6-inch stainless-steel blade and a sturdy wooden handle is attractive enough to display on your kitchen counter, and comes with a handy, matching wood-block stand to hold it when not in use.
While you can use a mezzaluna knife with any wood or plastic cutting board, some prefer to use them with a special mezzaluna cutting board with a shallow, bowl-shaped depression in the center. This can help keep the food you’re mincing from moving away as you chop it, speeding up both the cutting and cleanup.
Buying this type of cutting board separately from your mezzaluna knife can backfire, though, because if the curve of the concave board doesn’t exactly match the curve of your knife, they won’t work together.
Eliminate the headache of determining whether a mezzaluna board will work with your knife by buying a matched set, such as this one from KitchenCraft. It includes a mezzaluna with two stainless steel blades and twin handles in sturdy plastic as well as a sculpted beechwood cutting board. While the cutting board can only be hand-washed, the chopper itself is dishwasher-safe.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
This article was written by Danette St. Onge, formerly the Italian Food Expert for The Spruce Eats and a features editor at Cook’s Illustrated magazine (part of America’s Test Kitchen). An avid kitchen appliance junkie, she spends hours combing the Internet, comparing options, reading reviews, and testing devices to find the best tool for every job.