Complete Guide to Cutting Boards: Which Is Best for You?

There are many different types of cutting boards on the market these days, and it can be difficult to decide which type is best for you.

In this blog post, we will discuss the different types of cutting boards and their specific uses. We will also help you decide which type of cutting board is best for your needs.

Let’s get started.

And be sure to check out my article titled – Kitchen Knife Care: Do’s and Don’ts of Maintaining Knives where I discuss the do’s and don’ts of kitchen knife care. I cover everything from storing your knives to sharpening them properly. Plus see Kitchen Knife Anatomy for more.

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What is a cutting board and what are the different types available on the market today

A cutting board is a slab of material, usually wood, plastic, or composite designed to provide a stable cutting surface. Many cutting boards are rectangular in shape but many are also square or round.

A cutting board comes in various materials which each have their own advantages and disadvantages.

Next, we’ll discuss specific types of cutting board materials:

1. Wooden cutting boards:

Wooden cutting boards, such as this one from Teakhaus, have become a popular choice for home chefs because they are aesthetically pleasing and durable enough to withstand daily use. These come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors.

Wood cutting boards:

  • Wooden cutting boards are also the most porous material and absorb odors and bacteria more quickly than other materials.
  • They should be hand-washed with soap and water using a stiff brush then dried immediately to prevent warping.
  • If the wood starts to look dry or faded, it can be treated with a cutting board oil or wax.
  • These are heavier than plastic boards but will also last longer.

2. Plastic cutting boards:

Plastic cutting boards, like this one from OXO, are fairly inexpensive and can be washed in the dishwasher. Although they do not look as nice as wooden or stone cutting boards, they are a great option for the average home cook. Plastic cutting boards are made from a variety of materials, including polyethylene, polypropylene, and high-density polyethylene.

Plastic cutting boards:

  • Can be washed in the dishwasher, and do not require maintenance.
  • They will need to be replaced periodically due to knife cut markings.
  • They have the potential for bacteria growth if used for cutting raw meat.
  • Plastic cutting boards can be slippery, which can lead to accidents.

3. Composite cutting boards:

This type is made from a combination of materials such as bamboo, hardwood, and plastic. They are durable, bacteria-resistant, and can be washed with hot water and soap. Bamboo is an excellent choice since it is lightweight, more eco-friendly than wood, and should last a lifetime if cared for.

4. Glass cutting boards:

These cutting boards are nonporous which makes them easy to clean and sanitize; however, they can break if dropped so they’re not ideal for everyday use. Glass boards are also very hard on knife edges and will dull them quicker. This type of board is not recommended. In fact, Cook’s Illustrated advises against this type of board completely.

5. Stone cutting boards:

As we mentioned before, these cutting boards are extremely durable and do not absorb liquids or oils like wooden cutting boards do – meaning that they don’t need to be oiled after each use. However, they are also the most difficult type of cutting board to keep clean because of all the nooks and crannies; they should be washed with hot water and soap immediately after use. Again, it is best to opt for another type of board over stone.

How to choose the best type of cutting board for your needs

To choose the best cutting board for your needs, you should consider the following:

  1. The material of the cutting board (wooden, plastic, composite)
  2. The size of the cutting board
  3. How easy the cutting board is to clean and sanitize
  4. The durability of the cutting board
  5. Whether the cutting board has a nonporous surface

Which cutting board is best for you?

Now that we’ve discussed the different types of cutting boards, it’s time to decide which one is best for you.

If you’re looking for a cutting board that is easy to clean and sanitize, then a plastic cutting board would be a good choice.

If you’re looking for a cutting board that will last a long time with a little maintenance, has a beautiful wood grain pattern, then a wood cutting board would be ideal.

No matter what your needs are, there is sure to be a cutting board that is perfect for you.

The benefits of using a cutting board

Cutting boards are a good way to avoid cutting yourself. They also help keep your knives from getting dull. Additionally, cutting boards help protect your countertops from knife scratches and cuts.

Using a cutting board is the best way to keep your knives sharp and in good condition. It’s also important to remember that using a cutting board will prolong the life of your knives.

Tips and tricks for using a cutting board

A few tips to help you use your cutting board are:

  1. When cutting raw meat, use a separate cutting board for that purpose to avoid cross-contamination.
  2. Be sure to wash your cutting board with hot water and soap after each use.
  3. If you’re using a wooden cutting board, be sure to oil it every few weeks.

The care and cleaning of cutting boards

To properly care for and clean a cutting board, you should:

  • Wash the cutting board with hot, soapy water after each use.
  • Sanitize the cutting board by running it through the dishwasher or using a sanitizing solution (Plastic boards).
  • Oil the cutting board occasionally to keep it in good condition (wooden boards only).
  • Store the cutting board in a dry place.

If you follow these tips, your cutting board will last for years.

How to cut on a cutting board

When cutting on a cutting board, remember the following:

  • Use a sharp knife. A dull knife can cause injuries.
  • Keep your fingers out of the way of the knife.
  • Never put your hand on top of the blade. You could get cut.

Keep the cutting board in a safe place while you’re not using it, and always use caution to prevent injuries.

How often do you need to replace your cutting board?

With proper care, a cutting board can last for years. However, if it becomes worn or damaged, it’s time to replace it.

Replace a plastic board that shows signs of wear like scratches and cracks after some time. This is determined by how often you use it, it may last between 2 and 10 years.

A wooden cutting board will last longer, but it needs to be oiled every few weeks to keep the wood from drying out and becoming brittle. If the wood starts to crack or chip, it’s time for a new cutting board. These may last 10 to 20 years.

What size and shape of cutting board should home cooks buy?

When it comes to cutting boards, size does matter. You don’t want a cutting board that is too small or too large. A cutting board that is too small can be difficult to work with and a cutting board that is too large can be awkward to store.

The best size for a home cook is one that is around 15×20 inches. This size is large enough to work with, but not too big that it takes up a lot of storage space.

Boards are also available in different shapes, such as rectangular or square. The shape you choose is mostly personal preference. However, if you have a lot of counter space, a rectangular cutting board may be a good choice because it takes up less space than a square cutting board.

Small Cutting BoardLarge Cutting Board
UseabilityChopping, dicing, prep workCarving meat
DishwasherFits in dishwasherToo Large

No matter what size or shape of cutting board you choose, just make sure it is big enough to work with and that it is in good condition. With the right cutting board, cooking will be safer and easier than ever.

Complete guide to cutting boards – Summary

It’s important to remember that not all boards are created equal. The best cutting board for you depends on your individual needs. So, take the time to consider what type of cutting board is best for you and how to properly care for it.

Now that you know all about cutting boards, choose the best one for your needs and start slicing and dicing like a pro!

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