Tumbler Rolling Knife Sharpener Review: This Gadget Makes It Easy to Keep Blades Sharp

Updated: Feb. 28, 2024

Does the Tumbler knife sharpener work as well in real life as it does on TikTok? We put it to the test to find out.

Our editors and experts handpick every product we feature. We may earn a commission from your purchases.
Learn more.

As most chefs will tell you, learning how to sharpen knives by hand using a whetstone is a skill that takes plenty of practice to perfect. That’s why too many people skip regular knife sharpeningwhich is a mistake the Tumbler rolling knife sharpener seeks to solve.

“It is important to keep your knife sharp as you will have more precision and accuracy in your work,” says Drew Curlett, a private chef and cooking instructor in Baltimore, Maryland. “Also, it is much safer to get cut with a sharp knife than a dull one.” While none of us want to have kitchen accidents, dull knives actually put you in far more danger of cutting yourselfespecially when cutting round ingredients, like onions or apples. A sharp knife ensures whatever you’re cutting stays put.

The Tumbler knife sharpener has caught the eyes of millions of users on TikTok and Instagram because of how seemingly simple it is to use. Could this be the future of at-home knife sharpening? We tested one to find out.

What is a Tumbler knife sharpener?

Tumbler Rolling Knife SharpnerAllison Robicelli for Taste of Home

The Tumbler knife sharpener has a unique design that makes it an attractive alternative to traditional methods. For one, it’s nearly foolproof to use, requiring nothing more than the ability to roll a cylinder back and forth across the counter. Truly, anyone can use this to sharpen their knives! And, because the cylindrical design makes quick work of repetitive motion, it only takes a fraction of the time and effort to sharpen knives when compared to using a whetstone. In fact, if you use the Tumbler knife sharpener for a few seconds (yes, seconds) every week, your knives should stay in top-notch condition.

Tumbler Knife SharpenerVIA MERCHANT VIA MERCHANT

Tumbler Original Rolling Knife Sharpener

Get a factory-sharp blade anywhere, at any time, with this rolling knife sharpener.

Tumbler Knife Sharpener Features

So, how exactly does this thing work? The Tumbler knife sharpener is a two-piece device that lets anyone sharpen knifes to a precise, professional-grade edge. One piece is a hardwood block with magnetic sides with different slopes (20 degrees and 15 degrees), which hold your knife in place at the exact right angle.

The other piece is a hardwood cylinder with two textured discs on each side. One disc is made of an abrasive material with pulverized diamonds and the other consists of stainless steel with a helix pattern. Diamonds are the hardest stone on earth, which make them outstandingly effective for sharpening knives. Stainless steel is an ideal material for honing a freshly sharpened edge. Talk about a dynamic duo!

To keep the two pieces together, the Tumbler knife sharpener comes with a wooden storage stand you can keep on your counter or cabinet. You can also choose to stash it away in its original packaging; the set comes in a sturdy, rather attractive cardboard box, which makes it just as ideal for gifting as it does for storage.

How We Tested It

Tumbler Rolling Knife Sharpner testingAllison Robicelli for Taste of Home

In advance of testing out the Tumbler knife sharpener, I pulled out two of my best kitchen knives that had gone dull to the point where they were unusable. They had been sitting in the back of a drawer ready to be sharpened…eventually. Considering how long I had been putting this tedious task offand how many times it got bumped to the bottom of the to-do list in favor of more pressing projectsthe Tumbler sharpener’s ease-of-use factor was already a major plus in my book.

Santoku Knife Test

I started off with the fully dull Santoku knife. It attached to the magnetic block at a 15 degree angle. I began rolling the tumbler’s diamond edge back and forth the entire length of the blade as instructed. The motion was almost effortless, and to be honest, enjoyable. There’s something wonderfully meditative about repetitive motion that doesn’t require any sort of thinking whatsoever. I didn’t have to worry about whether or not I was holding the knife correctly, grinding at just the right angle or getting full coverage across the blade.

I sharpened each side with the diamond disc for two minutes. Then, I ran the helix-printed end of the cylinder across each side of the blade four times to remove any tiny metal burrs, ensuring the edge was perfectly straight. Next, I used my newly-sharpened knife on some onions and carrots. It cut them to bits as if it was brand new.

Chef’s Knife Test

The Tumbler knife sharpener also did a great job of getting the chef’s knife to a razor’s edge, but it wasn’t as easy to sharpen as the Santoku. Santoku knives have a rectangular blade with a relatively straight edge, so rolling the cylinder along the full length of the knife’s edge was effortless. However, chef’s knives curve dramatically towards the tip, which required a bit of adjustment in motion. It took about three minutes per side to get the chef’s knife back to fighting shape.

Maintenance Test

After seeing what the Tumbler knife sharpener could do for dull knives, I then tested it on the knives I had been actively using in my kitchen. Once a week, I’d attach my knives to the side of the magnetic block with the 15 degree angle meant for routine maintenance. It took only about 20 seconds per side to get each knife into freshly-sharpened condition.

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Highly effective
  • Made of high-quality materials
  • Diamond sharpening disc will last forever
  • Attractive storage stand and packaging
  • Use on just about any knife or cleaver with a straight blade

Cons

  • Pricey
  • Cannot be used on serrated blades, like those on bread and steak knives

FAQs

Tumbler Rolling Knife Sharpner FAQAllison Robicelli for Taste of Home

How long does it take to sharpen a knife with a Tumbler?

How long it takes will depend on how dull your knife is. According to the company’s website, the first sharpening of a stainless steel knife takes between 2 and 6 minutes, or up to 10 minutes for knives made of extra-hard Damascus steel. After the initial sharpening, regular maintenance takes only a few seconds a week.

What grit is the Tumbler sharpener?

The Tumbler knife sharpener’s diamond disc has a D35 grit size. Because diamonds are the hardest minerals on earth, they sharpen any material, and will never dull.

What Other Reviewers Have to Say

“We’ve been needing to sharpen many of our kitchen knives but I’ve been intimidated with where to start,” writes Amazon reviewer, Keith J. Turner. “First off this product is beautifully made! It could easily be a nice gift. The magnetic block offers two angles to precisely sharpen different knifes. The magnetic feature is strong and ensures your knife stays put while sharpening. The tumbler has two sides to best sharpen and careful refine your knife’s edge. It is easy to use and quickly improved our knives! Highly recommend!”

Five-star reviewer, William, writes that the Tumbler Knife Sharpener “has to be, hands down, the best knife sharpener I’ve ever used! With two different angles, and a great form factor, it makes the process of sharpening simple and effective! The box even looks great for gifting purposes!”

“I have purchased a variety of knife sharpeners and honing steels in the past and none really provided me with the type of sharpening quality I was looking for,” writes 5-star reviewer, Jennifer Sunder, an avid home cook who saw the Tumbler Knife Sharpener in her social media feeds. “It is so easy to use and provides me with the sharpening quality I have always been looking for. The precise angled sides take all of the guess work out of achieving the correct knife sharpening angle. Give it a tryyou won’t be disappointed!”

Product Comparison

While certainly easier to use than a whetstone, the Tumbler knife sharpener isn’t as easy to use as an electric knife sharpener. However, many professional chefs advise against using electric models. “I prefer using a hand sharpener because you have a little bit more control over the sharpening of it,” says Curtlett. “Electric knife sharpeners can grind off a too much metal, which will shorten the lifespan of your knife.” And when your knives are as expensive as our editor-favorite HexClad set, longevity is the name of the game!

Final Verdict

Tumbler Rolling Knife Sharpner Final verdictAllison Robicelli for Taste of Home

The Tumbler knife sharpener works exactly as advertised. It sharpens well, it does it quick and it makes the entire process foolproof. What’s not to love? While we recommend it for use in our own kitchens, we also think it really shines as a gift for anyone who cooks.

Where to Buy a Tumbler Knife Sharpener

Tumbler Knife SharpenerVIA MERCHANT VIA MERCHANT

Tumbler Original Rolling Knife Sharpener

Get a factory-sharp blade anywhere, at any time, with this rolling knife sharpener.

The Tumbler knife sharpener retails for $129, and is available through Amazon or the company’s website, which frequently runs sales with generous discounts. This way to safer, sharper cooking!