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It’s important to clean and disinfect your cutting board after each use to avoid contaminating things like vegetables with bacteria from raw meat. If you’re cutting different food items during the preparation of one meal, you might want to use multiple boards—one for meat and one for vegetables.
Wooden Cutting Boards: Wooden cutting boards can’t be thrown in the dishwasher like their plastic counterparts to be disinfected. The heat will distort the cutting board or crack the wood, allowing bacteria to thrive in the crevices.
To clean your wooden cutting board, cut a lemon in half (a lime also works) and then microwave the lemon for ten seconds to loosen up the juice.
While your lemon is microwaving, sprinkle coarse salt on your cutting board.
Use the warm lemon to rub the salt vigorously into the board until all stains are removed.
Rinse your board. Mix a 1-1 solution of 3% hydrogen peroxide and water, then wipe it onto your cutting board with a paper towel. This will eliminate any remaining bacteria left on the board.
Rinse your cutting board with warm water and thoroughly dry it before you store it to prevent the growth of mold or mildew.
Plastic Cutting Boards: Plastic cutting boards are easy to clean and maintain because they’re lightweight and don’t warp when washed.
It’s safe to add your plastic cutting board to the dishwasher. A dishwashing cycle will disinfect and sterilize its surface.
To clean your cutting board by hand, wet the surface and use a plastic scrubbing pad to remove any excess food.
Once the food is dislodged, add dishwashing liquid to your scrub pad and rub the liquid into the cutting board.
Thoroughly rinse your cutting board and allow it to dry completely before you store it.
If your plastic cutting board surface becomes rough, or if you notice mold or mildew, it’s probably time to replace it.
Composite Cutting Boards: Composite cutting boards are made by pressure heating layers of resin-infused Kraft paper until they turn into a smooth, flat and stable surface. These cutting boards don’t require oiling and are dishwasher safe. You can follow the same maintenance guidelines as plastic cutting boards to care for them.
Bamboo Cutting Boards: Bamboo cutting boards need regular maintenance to prevent staining and warping.
Rub the surface of your bamboo cutting board regularly with food-grade mineral oil to prevent the surface from absorbing too much moisture and warping or delaminating. Make sure you coat all sides of the cutting board evenly. Apply oil daily when your cutting board is new, then once a week during the first few months. After that, oiling once a month will suffice.
After each use, clean your bamboo cutting board with a sponge and soapy water. Make sure the cutting board is completely dry before you store it to prevent mold or mildew growth.
If you cut raw meat on your bamboo cutting board, disinfect the surface with diluted bleach (one part bleach to nine parts water). Use a soft cloth or sponge to wipe the cutting board surface with the bleach mixture. Rinse the cutting board thoroughly and then let it fully dry before you store it.