The Best Cutting Board Buying Guide
Table of Contents
Top Best Kitchen Cutting Board Based on Reviews and Price
How to Choose the Best Cutting Board?
A kitchen remains incomplete without a good cutting board that serves all your chopping, mincing, dicing and cutting requirements. We don’t often give cutting boards the importance they deserve, but at the end of the day, they are really important. Cutting boards make chopping vegetables and meat a smooth process and the best of them ensure the evenest cuts, with the option of keeping all the cut material on the board in an organized manner for later use.
So, if you have been wondering what type of cutting board to buy, you have come to the right place. We will take you through all the things you need to consider before you buy a cutting board and also the things you need to do to maintain them. So, without further ado, let’s get started
5 Things To Know Before Buying a Cutting Board
Wood and rubber are the two most-preferred materials as far as cutting boards are concerned. However, both come with their respective pros and cons. Let’s talk about wooden cutting boards first.
Wooden cutting boards offer several advantages to users. End-grain boards and long-grain boards are the two subcategories of wooden boards and while they have subtle differences, both offer benefits such as:
- Aesthetically Pleasing – Wooden cutting boards look fabulous and there can be no doubters in this regard. If you want a kitchen space that is much more than just functional, then there’s no better material than wood for your chopping board.
- Wood Does Not Damage Knives – Even though long-grain boards are harder than end-grain boards, they don’t damage knives. With a wooden cutting board, you can ensure the longevity of your knives.
- Long-Lasting – A high-quality wooden chopping board can last you a long time if you take good care of it, making it a long-term investment.
However, wooden chopping boards also come with their fair share of negatives like:
- Damage-Prone if Left Unprotected – While there’s no doubting the longevity of wooden boards if they are cared for, they may not be as long-lasting if users don’t care for them at all. After all, wood changes with the environment, and in areas of high moisture, wooden boards will invariably change, resulting in a not-so-flat chopping surface.
- Wooden Boards Can Get Smelly – If you chop garlic and onions a lot, then it might be quite difficult for you to get the smell away from the board.
- Certain Vegetables May Leave Stains – You need to be careful while chopping vegetables like beet, as its pigments may leave stains on wooden boards; stains that are quite hard to remove.
- High-Quality Boards Are Expensive – If you want the finest quality of wood, then you have to pay quite a handsome amount of money for your chopping board, which makes wooden cutting boards difficult to purchase for lower-income groups.
Rubber boards are the most frequently used across restaurants and households where the people in charge don’t care much for aesthetics. Here are some positives that rubber cutting boards have to offer:
- Inexpensive – Compared to wooden cutting boards, rubber boards are far more affordable.
- Durable – Rubber cutting boards are naturally long-lasting. Unlike wooden cutting boards, you don’t have to put in extra effort into maintaining them.
- Easy to Clean – You can easily wash rubber wooden boards with water, something that you can’t do with wooden boards.
Here are some negatives that come with rubber cutting boards:
- Not Aesthetically Pleasing at All – If functionality is what you want above all else, then rubber cutting boards are right for you. However, if you want some visual fulfillment along with the functionality, then you should choose wood over the rubber.
- Can be Hard on Knives – While rubber cutting boards themselves are long-lasting, their use may shorten the lives of your knives, as their surfaces can be quite hard.
There are bamboo cutting boards available in the market as well. However, bamboo boards have not really become as popular as wooden and rubber boards.
Two materials you should never ever consider for your cutting board are ceramic/glass and wood composite. Both these materials are known for their extreme hardness; something that is not really recommended if you want your knives to stay sharp and effective.
#2 Shape and Size
Now that we have covered everything from the material standpoint, let’s move on and talk about what shape and size of the cutting board you should choose.
The decision regarding the shape and size of the cutting board lies solely with you. The most important thing you should consider before choosing a particular shape and size of the cutting board is whether or not you can accommodate the board on your countertop.
While standard chopping boards are typically rectangular in shape with dimensions of 12-by-18 inches, you can even choose larger sizes depending on the size of your countertop. Larger cutting boards typically have dimensions such as 15-by-20 inches or 24-by-36 inches.
You should also look at the thickness, with recommended thickness for rubber boards being ½ to 1 inch. For a long grain wooden board, ¼ to 2-inch thickness is decent. If you want an end-grain wooden board, nothing less than 2 inches of thickness is good enough.
#3 Different Boards for Cutting Different Food Items
There is no rule that says you can only own one cutting board. If you tend to eat a large variety of food, it will not hurt to have more than one chopping board at your disposal. Having more than one cutting board also ensures proper sanitation, as you can use one for chopping fruits and vegetables, and the other for chopping meat.
When it comes to chopping fish and meat, it’s best to choose a plastic/rubber cutting board. Oils from fish and meat are not very good for wooden boards as they tend to seep into the fibers of the wood. This can lead to bacteria infestation in your chopping board, which will not only make it smelly but also unhealthy and unsanitary.
For vegetable and fruit chopping, you should choose a wooden board. All in all, it will save you a lot of hassle in the long run if you keep a wooden board and a rubber board.
#4 Cutting Boards with Additional Features
To make cutting easier, a lot of boards nowadays come with one or the other extra feature. While some cutting boards come with rubber feet for improved board stability, others may have liquid-catching grooves.
While these additional features may come in handy, they are not really necessary. For example, the cutting boards with rubber feet certainly provide more stability. However, you can never use both sides of such a cutting board. If your cutting board keeps shifting as you use it, you could simply place a dishtowel underneath the board to achieve greater stability.
There are boards that come with liquid-catching grooves as well, which come in handy when you are cutting meat or other products with lots of liquid content that spills out as you cut them. However, once again, the grooves aren’t really necessary. If you cut these items on a rubber/plastic board, you can easily give the board a wash later on to remove liquid stains.
Some modern boards are foldable. Such a feature allows users to carry these boards around. However, you can be 99% sure that these boards will break sooner or later. So, such kinds of cutting boards are only recommended for travelers.
Also recommended for travelers are boards that come with attached cups and trays. However, such boards are not necessarily must-have kitchenware, as your home’s kitchen is already bound to have many cups and trays.
#5 How to Maintain a Cutting Board
We have covered almost everything we needed in terms of the things you should consider before buying a cutting board. Now, it’s time to look at how to make your cutting boards last long. Here are some tips on how to take care of your cutting boards so that they can serve your chopping purposes for a long time to come.
- If you are thinking of putting your boards in the dishwasher for cleaning, think again. Dishwashers generate incredible levels of heat, which can greatly damage both rubber and wooden cutting boards.
- The soap and hot water combination are ideal for cleaning all types of chopping boards. However, you need to be careful about the drying part, particularly for wooden boards, which are best dried with clean dish towels.
- If you apply food-safe mineral oil evenly on your wooden board, then you can protect your board from developing stains and odors. The chances of splitting and warping are also reduced as a result of food-safe mineral oil application.
- Once you are done using your wooden board, make sure that you clear all food remnants and standing water from the board’s surface.
Wrapping It Up
So, with all this information to guide you, you should now be able to pick a cutting board that fits your kitchen impeccably. Happy shopping!