What You Need to Clean & Sanitize Wood Cutting Boards

It is essential to know how to clean a wooden cutting board to prevent it from germs and make it safe for food. When you use your cutting board on a daily basis, then some cuts and trenches occur in the board and enable the bacteria to breed inside it. This can cause cross-infection while using the board for poultry, fish and vegetables. By following these steps regarding the cleaning and maintaining a wooden cutting board you can stop the growth in the kitchen.

How Often to Clean a Wooden Cutting Board

You should wash your wooden cutting board after every use. Then, every month, deep clean, sanitize and oil the board to help with long-term maintenance. If used frequently, you may want to sterilize and oil it every two weeks.

What You Need

To Clean With Dishwashing Liquid

  • Cloth or paper towel
  • Dish brush and sponge
  • Dish soap

To Clean With Bleach

  • Cloth or paper towels
  • Dish soap
  • Chlorine bleach
  • Sink or large tub

To Clean With Lemon

  • Lemon
  • Salt
  • Cloth or paper towels

How to Clean a Wooden Cutting Board With Dishwashing Liquid

Make sure that you never put your cutting board in the dishwasher as the water can cause the board to break and cloak, these little cracks will allow the bacteria to breed and potential source of foodborne illness. Instead, wash the board by hand after each use, following the steps below.

Wash the Board

Once you get rid of any food scraps from the board, wash the food with hot water and then apply the soap and scrub with a swill or dish brush. If you see any knife spot, scratches or any raw material in the wood then scrub also that area to prevent the cutting board from bacteria.

Clean Both Sides

It is necessary to clean and rub both sides of your cutting board, even if you use one one side of the cutting board for cutting. Meat juices can drip and contaminate the other side. If your wooden cutting board has a handle then you should also wash it as well.

Rinse and Dry

Wash the board again with warm water and dish soap to remove the bleach odor. Rinse the board thoroughly, then dry it with a cloth or paper towel. Allow the board to dry completely before removing it.

How to Clean a Wooden Cutting Board with Bleach

If your cutting board is used for poultry, meat then you should use bleach for cleaning and kill the bacteria from the board. First of all clean the board with dish soap and follow these additional steps to sanitize it.

Create the Bleach Solution

Use 1 tablespoon of chlorine bleach in one gallon of water in a sink or large tub.

Soak Board

Either dip the board in the bleach solution or soak the entire surface of the board with the mix. The key is to let the bleach solution work for 2 to 3 minutes so it has time to kill the bacteria on the board.

Rinse and Dry

Then rinse the board with warm water and dish soap for one more time to remove the remaining bleach odor. Wash the board completely and then dry it with a cloth or paper towel. Leave the board in the air to completely dry.

How to Clean a Wooden Cutting Board with Lemon

Cleaning the wooden cutting board with lemon and salt once a month is the best way to maintain it. Using this way you can also easily remove the stain from the board. And if your cutting board smells like lots of chopped garlic, this can help freshen it up.

Scrub Board

  • Scatter the board with rough salt, such as sea salt or pure salt.
  • Incise a lemon in half.
  • Wipe the lemon cut side down over the salt which is lying on the board, and scrub the lemon in a small circle following the direction of grain.

Let the Solution Sink in

Leave the solution of salt and lemon on the board for more than 5 minutes.

Rinse and Dry

Wash the board completely and make sure that all of the salt is removed and then dry it with cloth or paper towel and leave it in open air for completely drying.


How to Keep Your Wooden Cutting Board Clean Longer

To keep clean your wooden cutting board you should follow these steps;

  • Avoid cleaning a wooden cutting board in the dishwasher and dip the board in water for more than a few minutes.
  • To avoid cross-taint, nominate separate cutting boards for different tasks—one for preparing meat, another for vegetables, and one for fish.
  • Now dry your board once you wash to prevent it from cracking.
  • Always use those boards which are made from maple and tough close grain wood.
  • If your board is very busted or the furrow is difficult to clean, discard it.

Seasonal Maintenance

In order to prevent the wood board from drying, cracking and warping, it is important to oil your board one time in a month. You can apply cutting board oil or food grade mineral or avocado oil on the board using some brush, clean cloth or paper towel. Wipe the oil into the board, making sure to coat every surface. Allow the oil to soak into the board for a few hours or overnight, then wipe off any excess oil from the surface. 

Frequently Asked Question

What is Safer: Plastic or Wood Cutting Board?

Plastic cutting boards are non-resistant, the bacteria will sit on the top of the board instead of going inside into the surface. Although, bacteria will remain in the little furrow and burn caused by knives. Furthermore, these cutting boards are easy to clean and you just need to put them into the dishwasher or wash them by hand using warm water and dish soap.

While wooden cutting boards are more inclined to bacteria – caused by cuts, cracks or canal in the wood – they are also safe to use if properly cleaned and maintained.

You can follow these steps to wash a cutting board after every use which will help to avoid the bacteria growth. Take care of your wooden cutting board by periodically disinfecting and oiling it also helps maintain the board’s health and longevity.

Which is Best: a Wood or Plastic Cutting Board?

If you can do some extra maintenance then definitely you will enjoy the benefits from wooden cutting boards as these are less slippery as compared to plastic cutting boards and enable the kitchen knife to survive longer. 

The wooden cutting board also increases the beauty of your kitchen which is the plus point of it. Beside this, there are also some advantages of plastic cutting board as it is cheaper than wooden board and it is also dishwasher safe.

Final Verdict

In the end, the discussion regarding wood vs. plastic cutting boards is a matter of personal preference. Consider how often you cook, as well as how much time it takes to clean and maintain each type of cutting board. 

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