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How To Clean A Wood Cutting Board

Wooden cutting boards are great for home kitchens and commercial use. Some might say that they aren’t safe as they are porous and can harbor bacteria but this is not true.

Cleaning and taking care of your wooden cutting boards can not only help them to last you a very long time but will keep them from growing bacteria.

The upkeep of wood cutting boards is a little more work than plastic cutting boards but they make for pleasant cutting surfaces and are more forgiving on your knives.

In this post, I will go over how to clean a wood cutting board so that they are clean and sanitary for future food prep.

How to clean a wood cutting boards 5 Ways

It is important to know that not all wooden cutting boards are created equal. The better the quality the longer they are going to last you and the easier it will be to prevent them from growing bacteria.

Over time you will have knife marks on the board and they might need to be sanded but this is an advantage to wooden cutting boards.

They can be sanded and it will help them last even longer.

Boos boards for example are made in America from great quality hardwoods, kiln-dried, and finished with all-natural beeswax and mineral oil which keeps the boards from drying out and/or splitting.

Other boards are not made with the same care in mind and therefore dry out and crack or split which will make it tougher to keep clean.

These steps are the same when you clean plastic cutting boards.

1. Soap and water

Using mild soap and warm water is the best way to clean your wooden cutting board. With a dishrag or sponge, lightly scrub your cutting board and then rinse under warm water.

You never want to leave wooden cutting boards soaking as it will damage them. The cutting board will absorb the water and cause it to expand.

Whether your cutting board is brand new and needs to be washed or you have just used it to prep dinner, you want to wash it thoroughly on both sides.

If you have food particles on your cutting board make sure they all get washed off so that bacteria doesn’t start to grow.

  • Grab yourself a good dish rag and some soap and give the wood cutting board a good scrub.
  • Dry it off with a clean dishtowel and then allow for it to air dry the rest of the way.

2. Disinfect with white vinegar

Pure white vinegar is a great disinfectant for wooden cutting boards. It’s an all-natural disinfectant which means that wood won’t be absorbing chemicals.

Pour some white vinegar onto a dishcloth and wipe your board on the front, back, and all of the sides to make sure that you get it completely cleaned.

If you have a few knife marks on your wooden cutting board you can pour a little vinegar on them to ensure that it gets into those grooves and keeps them clean.

If you have lingering onion smells or other odors on your wood cutting boards, white vinegar is great as a deodorizer also!

Thoroughly rinse your cutting board, remove the excess water with a dishtowel and then allow it to completely air dry.

3. Scrub stains

The juices from cooked chicken can cause grease stains or cutting strawberries can leave red all over your board.

You want to wash your cutting boards as soon as possible because the longer it sits on the board the more it is going to stain.

Mix a little baking soda with water until you get a paste-like consistency and cover the stained areas. Using a dishrag scrub it into the board until the stain is gone.

Clean your wooden cutting board with soap and water and then dry it off with a dishtowel.

4. Deodorizing

Do your wood cutting board smell of onions and you cant rid it of the smell? As I mentioned earlier in this post white vinegar is great for removing unwanted odors.

Baking soda is also a great way to remove bad smells from your cutting boards! Sprinkle some baking soda and then add a little water to your wooden cutting board to remove odors.

Let the baking soda sit on the cutting board for 2/3 minutes allowing the baking soda to absorb the smells. Wash the cutting board with mild soap and warm water and then dry it off with a dishtowel.

5. Conditioning

Keeping wooden cutting conditioned is key to a long-lasting cutting board. Always make sure that your cutting board is completely clean before you condition it.

You can use either use food-grade mineral oil or beeswax to treat wooden cutting boards. This will keep them from drying out and add a little seal to your wood making it less porous.

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