A good cutting board, like a good knife, makes cooking easier and safer. While slicing and dicing ingredients, you’ll want a cutting board that can resist stains and odors, and some boards can also be used for serving. “Are you going to be utilitarian and do a lot of preparation work that no one will see? Or are you working in an open kitchen and preparing and presenting food on the board? “Artisanal Boards‘ president and cutting board maker, Tony Pechenik, remarked
When it comes to appearance, well-crafted wood boards are both attractive and functional. Both wood and bamboo cutting boards may survive for years and even heal cuts, but they are more expensive and require frequent food-safe mineral oil coating. Plastic cutting boards are dishwasher safe and affordable, but they scar easily and will need to be replaced sooner rather than later. Due to their dulling effect on knife blades, glass cutting boards should be avoided.
We examined 12 chopping boards, from plastic mix units to Japanese Hinoki wooden. We also spoke to a few consultants who use chopping boards and make them: Pechenik, Frank Proto, director of culinary operations on the Institute of Culinary Education, and Martin Bucknavage, senior meals security extension affiliate Penn State Department of food science.
Finest chopping board general
The Williams Sonoma Acacia End-grain Cutting Board is simple compared to different wooden boards and appears trendy on the counter or as a serving board.
- Materials: Acacia end-grain wooden
- Dimensions: 12″ x 12″ x 2″
- Dishwasher secure: No
- Reversible chopping floor: No
Pros: Odor and stain-resistant, suitable for preparation and serving
Cons: Not reversible
The Williams Sonoma Acacia End-Grain Cutting Board is a stylish and functional cutting board. Any remaining stains vanished into the rich wood grain as the cherry and beet juice wiped clean off the top. Similarly, the board did not retain the scents of garlic or onions. Before you use the board for the first time, Williams Sonoma recommends spraying it with mineral oil. The wood remained smooth and moisturized after being used several times over the course of a week.
Due to the solid wood and feet at the corners of the board, this cutting board was the highest off the counter, about two inches. When compared to comparable cutting boards that lay flat on the table, the small raise makes it more comfortable to use. Although the feet and weight make this board more difficult to store and move around the kitchen, the end-grain wood design is appealing enough to keep it out all the time.
Acacia wood, like maple, is a hardwood recognized for its resilience. I didn’t notice my knife sinking into the acacia wood, and I didn’t notice any difference between starting on opposite sides of the grain. Mineral oil should be applied to the board once a month or whenever the texture feels dry, according to Williams Sonoma.
Finest bamboo chopping board
Like those within the Totally Bamboo 3-Piece Cutting Board Set, bamboo chopping boards provide low upkeep longevity and low environmental influence.
- Materials: Bamboo
- Dimensions: 8″ x 6″ x 3/8″, 11″ x 8.5″ x 3/8″, 13″ x 9.5″ x 3/8″
- Dishwasher secure: No
- Reversible chopping floor: Sure
Pros: Inexpensive, scent and stain-resistant, sustainable helpful resource
Cons: Lower-out deal with decreased chopping area
We found that the three bamboo sets we tested were all more resistant to smells than other types of wood. The Totally Bamboo boards, on the other hand, were equally resistant to both odors and stains. After scrubbing the board with soap, the stains were nearly completely gone, and the next day, I couldn’t identify where the discolouration had been. I detected only surface level scratches and no deep grooves after cutting.
Bamboo requires the same care as wood: apply mineral oil to the surface once a month or when it feels dry, and avoid submerging it in water. The Totally Bamboo boards are thinner than conventional hardwood boards, making them easier to store, but they don’t seem as solid and are nearly flat against the surface.
If you’re concerned about the environment, bamboo is a natural material that doesn’t require chemicals to grow. This bamboo set is also a good value for money because it includes three boards for the price of one single wood board.
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Finest plastic chopping board
The OXO Good Grips Polypropylene Cutting and Carving Board are ideal if you’re in search of one that you do not have to deal with gently; however, it will nonetheless maintain up underneath chopping and slicing.
- Materials: Polypropylene
- Dimensions: 21″ x 11″ x 14.34″
- Dishwasher secure: Sure
- Reversible chopping floor: Sure
Pros: Giant chopping floor, rubber edges preserve the board degree and regular
Cons: Could also be too massive to slot in some dishwashers, much less sturdy than wooden
Plastic boards, unlike wood, do not heal from scratches, thus it’s critical that the material is strong enough to withstand repeated use without leaving significant scars. While we haven’t used the OXO board for a long time, the chef’s knife and serrated knife merely scraped the surface, which is relatively usual for plastic. Chopping was simple on the OXO board because my knife didn’t dig into the surface, allowing for smooth dicing motions.
By positioning the juice well right at the edge of the cutting surface, this board maximizes the available cutting surface. The well is deep enough to catch spilled juices while not obstructing cutting area. I smelled the board shortly after scraping off the garlic and onions, and it smelled so neutral that I nearly forgot I’d sliced the onions.
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What else we tested?
Fifth and Cherry End-Grain Cutting Board: With a price tag of over $200 and a lifetime warranty, this cutting board is an investment. The 2-inch thick end-grain wood is both attractive and functional, since it resists odor and color. It is, however, an expensive buy, and I would advise most people to stay with something more reasonable for everyday use.
Shun Hinoki Cutting Board and Shun Hinoki Cutting Board with Urushi Edge: The Shun boards were light and felt nice under my knife. I rubbed a chopped lemon over the spots as directed by the manufacturer, and the discoloration almost vanished. The pale wood, on the other hand, stains readily, and the lemon approach did not assist when I let stains persist, as might happen in a busy kitchen. When scrubbed with soap, the stains vanished, but the color remained, and the board’s texture got rougher.
Williams Sonoma Antibacterial Synthetic Cutting and Carving Board: This board and the OXO were neck and neck for best plastic. The William Sonoma board held up to odors and stains better than the OXO, although the serrated knife cut somewhat deeper into the surface.
Farberware Bamboo Cutting Board, set of 3: For those who prefer bamboo boards, this set is another excellent option. There is more available cutting surface than our best bamboo pick because there are no cut-out handles. These boards, however, discolored more easily than the Totally Bamboo boards.
Victorinox All-Rounder: This was the thinnest board we examined, and it was made of environmentally friendly wood fibers. It’s light, dishwasher-safe, and won’t stain or lose its aroma. The reason it isn’t a top pick is that it was scarred by the serrated knife’s first pass. Because this isn’t a deal breaker, I still recommend this board as an excellent space saver and casual use option.
What we don’t suggest
King Arthur Baking Company Maple Prep Board: This board felt tough and dry instantly after utilizing it. The feel points are the first purpose this board will not be a prime decide.
Made by Design Polygranite Cutting Mat Set: This set is a stable short-term choice: It’s cheap, dishwasher secure, and the black floor would not present stains. Nonetheless, I did feel like my chef’s knife caught barely once I pressed down arduous, so I’ve considerations regarding the sturdiness.
Royal Craft Wood Premium Bamboo Cutting Board: My most important concern with this board was that it splintered on the underside edge after simply shifting it around my kitchen. The feel of the juice effectively was challenging and felt unfinished; I used to be not assured juice would stream easily out without being absorbed.
Made by Design Acacia Wood Nonslip Cutting Board: Although the product of the identical wooden as our greatest general decide, the Made by Design board didn’t maintain up underneath our testing. Each goes with the knives scarred the floor. The committee was not utterly degree and wobbled when pushed down two corners.
Our chopping board testing methodology
Scent retention: On each board, we sliced onions and minced garlic and let them sit for five minutes. Then we went back to the boards, wiped the onions and garlic off with a dry cloth, and smelled them. We smelled the boards again after washing them with soap and water but not scrubbing them.
Staining: We sliced beets and cherries and left them on the boards for five minutes to see if the boards stained easily. Then we went back to the boards to see if they had any stains on them. We scrubbed the boards with a nylon sponge after cleaning them with dish soap and water, and then re-evaluated them for surface changes.
We noted if the boards rattled, seemed uneven, or moved on the counter when using them.
After testing, we looked over the boards for any visible and long-term wear and tear. We’ll keep using and tracking our top options to see how they perform over time.
Chopping board FAQs
How do I sanitize and clean my cutting board?
Because pathogens and microorganisms are removed, sanitizing is more comprehensive than cleaning surface dirt and grime. A heavily diluted bleach solution (one tablespoon of bleach to one gallon of water) can be used to sterilize both wood and plastic cutting boards.
“Sanitizing is critical where there is a risk of microbial contamination, such as with raw meats and poultry,” Bucknavage explained.
“Both [plastic and wood] are fundamentally sterilized the same way (although you can dry the wood with clean paper towels to eliminate moisture),” Bucknavage explained. “However, there is a significant difference in cleaning between the two. You don’t want to saturate the wood too much.” Plastic cutting boards are frequently dishwasher safe, and even if they aren’t, because the material is nonporous, they can be soaked in water for cleaning. After each usage, clean your cutting board with warm, soapy water, regardless of the material.
Is it possible for you to cut meat on my wooden cutting board?
Yes, you can use your wood cutting board to cut meat. However, because wood is more porous than plastic, bacteria can develop more easily.
The most important thing is to avoid cross-contamination by not cutting raw meat and vegetables on the same cutting board. If you must use the same cutting board, wash it with warm water and soap after each time it comes into contact with raw meat.
When is it time to get rid of your cutting board?
Our experts all agreed that if your cutting board has deep grooves that catch food, it’s time to replace it. “When boards become significantly damaged from knife use over a lengthy period of time, bacterial retention might become an issue,” Bucknavage explained.
How do you keep my wooden cutting board in good condition?
Wood cutting boards will endure just as long as plastic cutting boards, if not longer. Food-safe mineral oil is the key to caring for your wood boards. Mineral oil is available at local pharmacies and hardware stores. The cheap product will suffice; just make sure anything you purchase is food-safe.
Although there is no regulation for how often you should oil your board, Proto advises doing it every two months. “The mineral oil helps to safeguard the cutting board by preventing it from warping and drying out.” Apply a coat of mineral oil on your board if you’re using it more than normal if it feels dry to the touch.
What is the best wood for cutting boards?
For cutting boards, we primarily examine the wood’s durability or hardness. According to Pechenik, cutting and chopping on any surface causes wear and tear, thus hardwoods like walnut, acacia, and mahogany are frequently chosen for their endurance.
He did, however, mention that when picking wood, sustainability is a factor to consider. Mahogany, for example, is long-lasting and attractive, but the majority of it originates from rainforests.
The two hardwoods we tried for this tutorial were maple and acacia, but we also tested two Hinoki boards, which are recognized for being softer. Hinoki or pine are the best woods for keeping the edge on good knives, according to Pechnik. Maple and acacia won’t ruin your knife’s edge, but they will dull it faster than softer woods.
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