15 Best Budget EDC Knives of 2023

EDC, or everyday carry, is about being prepared. Having the tools on your person to overcome daily obstacles is the foundation of why we carry what we do. One item of continued debate and interest for the EDC community is what knife to carry. Every good EDC kit needs a knife. A good quality blade is crucial for opening letters to preparing your lunch. 

Despite what advertisers tell you, there are many great everyday carry knives at all price points, including those on a budget. Nearly every knife listed is under $100, and almost half of them are below $50. The prices below reflect the MSRP. Street prices on these products are almost always lower. 

To keep your kit as functional and price-conscious as possible, we have compiled a list of the 15 best budget EDC knives for 2023. Whether this is your first knife or you are a seasoned carrier, there is a budget-priced knife on this list for you.

15 Best Budget EDC Knives in 2023

Knafs Lander EDC Pocket Knife

1) Knafs Lander EDC Pocket Knife

The Lander is Knafs' first foray into the EDC knife world, and they built this one right. The G10 handles are slip resistant and designed to be easily swapped out for custom handle scales. Unlike other companies, disassembling the knife does not void the warranty. For those of us that are tinkerers, we can disassemble, reassemble, and customize to our heart's desire.

  • Blade length: 2.75"
  • Blade material: D2
  • MSRP Price: $58.00 USD

Spyderco Tenacious Lightweight

2) Spyderco Tenacious Lightweight

Spyderco has long been considered the go-to for EDC knives. Spyderco's slim design and customizable carry positions have made them a staple for carriers. The Tenacious is an entry-priced knife that incorporates many of the classic design elements of the brand's higher-end knives. Users can also select one of three different blade styles, from fully serrated to plain-edged.

  • Blade length: 8Cr13MoV
  • Blade material: 3.39"
  • MSRP Price: $71.00 USD

Boker Kalashnikov

3) Boker Kalashnikov

The Boker Kalashnikov knife is a folding knife that is designed to resemble the popular AK-47 rifle. It is made by Boker, a German company that has been producing knives for over a century. The knife features a 3.25 inch blade made of stainless steel, and a handle made of aluminum. The blade can be locked in place when open, and the handle features a pocket clip for easy carrying. The knife is named after the AK-47 rifle due to its similar folding mechanism and overall design.

  • Blade length: 3.25”
  • Blade material: D2
  • MSRP Price: $50.00 - $65.00 USD

Civivi Baby Banter

4) Civivi Baby Banter

The Baby Banter is an ideal knife for an individual looking for a deep-concealing stout blade. The stonewashed blade is almost an inch deep, giving the stubby blade a surprising amount of finesse, great for making long and precise cuts. With a total thickness of just under half an inch, the knife can fit in nearly any pocket for easy carrying.

  • Blade length: 2.34"
  • Blade material: Nitro-V
  • MSRP Price: $60.00 USD

Kershaw Shuffle

5) Kershaw Shuffle

The Shuffle is another diminutive pocket knife designed for everyday carry use. This little knife has an unfolded length of 5.75” and is ergonomically designed to fit as snugly in your hands as possible, regardless of your hand size. To further drive home the blade’s carry usefulness, its handle also features a built-in bottle opener, screwdriver, and lanyard attachment.

  • Blade length: 2.4”
  • Blade material: 8Cr14MoV
  • MSRP Price: $32.00 USD

QSP Penguin Pocket Knife

6) QSP Penguin Pocket Knife

The Penguin by QSP is a unique knife in the EDC lineup. The sheep foot style blade is not often encountered on a knife that is this affordable. The long straight cutting edge of this blade makes slicing rope a breeze. The satin-finished tool steel blade compliments the micarta handle scales nicely. Our staff pic is the denim micarta since who doesn't love a good pair of denim?

  • Blade length: 3.125"
  • Blade material: D2
  • MSRP Price: $40.00 - $60.00 USD

RAT Model II

7) RAT Model II 

The RAT Model 2 is the scaled-down and slicked-up version of Ontario knives’ RAT 1. The RAT is designed to handle any woodcraft task needed to survive in the wilderness, the RAT-2 took those same principles and shrunk them down to fit comfortably in your pocket. The black anodized blade makes for a handsome low-maintenance option, an excellent help for those who carry it in damper climates.

  • Blade length: 3"
  • Blade material: AUS-8 
  • MSRP Price: $50.00 - $60.00 USD

Civivi Elementum

8) Civivi Elementum 

For all of the knife guys who love the “shtick” of a knife snapping open, owning a traditional pocket knife can be a challenge. Flicking a blade open is not the preferred way to open many knives, infect some can be damaged by doing that. The Civivi Elementum, on the other hand, is designed as a flipper. The blade locks into place with the flick of a wrist and, of course, a little push with the finger. These knives won't just fall open, so your pockets will be safe.

  • Blade length: 2.96" 
  • Blade material: D2
  • MSRP Price: $60.00 - $130.00 USD

Blue Ridge Knives Zancudo

9) Blue Ridge Knives Zancudo 

The Zancudo is, by design, an ultra-light carry knife. At just three ounces adding this stainless steel and micarta-handled knife to your rotation will drop the weight of your kit significantly. This knife is well known for its robust spring detent, so you never have to worry about it opening up accidentally.

  • Blade length: 3.0"
  • Blade material: D2
  • MSRP Price: $50.00 - $70.00 USD

Kershaw Launch

10) Kershaw Launch 4

The launch line by Kershaw is the company's automatic opening series. While automatic blades may not be available in every state, the Launch 4 is an ultra-compact blade making it available in more locations. The 1.9-inch spear point blade rapidly deploys so you can be ready in the blink of an eye. While this blade is on the upper end of cost, the launch series and the launch 4, in particular, are priced for those looking to try an automatic knife without needing a loan.

  • Blade length: 1.9”
  • Blade material: CPM 154
  • MSRP Price: $165.00 USD

Victorinox Cadet

11) Victorinox Cadet

If there ever was a pocket knife that encompassed the ideas of EDC, it would be the Victorinox Cadet. The “swiss army knife” has been carried by every boy scout or knife enthusiast for the past century. Complete with a blade, bottle opener, can opener, and nail file, it’s hard to find a reason not to carry it. Don't forget those can openers can be used as screwdrivers too.

  • Blade length: 2.5"
  • Tools: 9
  • MSRP Price: $45.00 USD

The James Brand the Redstone

12) The James Brand the Redstone

The Redstone was designed as a ground-up lightweight carry knife. The polypropylene scales are contorted to reduce size and weight, whereas the blade's skeletonized cutouts make for an ambidextrous opening. The locking mechanism is also ambidextrous, making it a great knife for southpaws too. Buyers can choose from a semi-serrated or plain blade design.

  • Blade length: 2.5"
  • Blade material: Sandvik 12C27
  • MSRP Price: $90.00 USD

Cold Steel Finn Wolf

13) Cold Steel Finn Wolf

The Finn Wolf from Cold Steel is a large carry knife for those of us with large hands or a need for a larger blade. The zero ground blade lends itself to easy sharpening, and the blade design itself is from the Finnish Puukko knife, similar to the modern fixed blade Morrokniv. The Tri-Ad lock is easy to operate and provides a strong blade lock when performing tasks that require a bit of brawn.

  • Blade length: 3.5”
  • Blade material: AUS8A Stainless
  • MSRP Price: $65.00 USD

Opinel No9 Stainless Steel Knife

14) Opinel No9 Stainless Steel Knife

Opinel calls upon 130 years of knife-making skill to bring the no9 to life. Unlike the old-school lock backs or newer flipper knives, the Opinel is a traditional folding blade that utilizes a locking bolster collar to secure the blade. The lack of additional metal fittings makes this nearly solid wood-handled knife a joy to carry and use. For those of us that love the classics like tin cloth jackets and Thoreau, this is the knife for us.

  • Blade length: 3.5"
  • Blade material: Sandvik 12C27M
  • MSRP Price: $19.00 USD

SOG Twitch II

15) SOG Twitch II

The SOG Twitch 2 is the company's answer to a budget-conscious flipper-style knife. Well suited for everyday carry, the Twitch 2 features a drop point stainless steel blade that locks into position quickly with the flip of the wrist. The rear safety lock is a great assurance the blade will stay where it needs to when it's being carried or used. Encase all of these features in an aluminum handle scale, and you have a robust knife that will only look better with use.

  • Blade length: 2.65"
  • Blade material: AUS-8 
  • MSRP Price: $54.00 USD

Final Thoughts

Having a pocket knife for everyday carry is critical for a complete kit. Acquiring different knives for different situations can be costly. However, with the list of knives above, anyone who is inclined to start carrying can find a knife that suits their budget. Many carriers will find more than one knife in this selection to incorporate into their carry lineup. 

Regardless if you plan to carry one knife for the rest of your life or a different one every day, the end goal so the same; to be prepared for the day ahead. If you want to stay connected and learn more about everyday carry and cool new products, Sign up for the Axwell Army Newsletter by clicking here and get a special discount on your first Axwell Wallet purchase.

Axwell Army Newsletter

Axwell designs tough wallets and accessories for hard workers. We invest in better production practices, higher-quality materials, and timeless designs so you can buy one wallet that will last a lifetime.