It is essential to have the appropriate cutting board in addition to using the suitable knives for the task. Every time you cut up food into smaller pieces, you’ll be pressing the blade of the knife onto the cutting board. The surface is the point of contact between our treasured knives and the food repeatedly during the meal’s preparation.
Choosing the right cutting board that fits your desires and specifications will simplify the entire process. This goes for both you and your kitchen knives. The nature of a cutting board’s qualities will be determined by the material that it is constructed from.
A variety of materials are suitable for creating cutting boards, but two stand out above the rest: wood and plastic. These are the most easily obtainable and widely used cutting board materials.
It might be tempting to opt for either wood or plastic, however, it is important to consider various factors before making your decision. This article offers an overview of the distinctions between wood and plastic cutting boards, the impact they can have on your knives, and any other related information you may need.
Wooden Cutting Boards
Wood is known to be one of the top choices when it comes to cutting boards, with many believing it to be the superior option. It is clear why wood cutting boards are so widespread. They don’t decrease the sharpness of blades quickly, capture bacteria to eradicate them, and last a considerable amount of time.
Although there are no two identical wood cutting boards. They have a wide range of prices. It’s not only because of the kind of tree it is derived from, but also the specific section of the tree.
Your wooden cutting board, which might appear to be a single large chunk of wood, is usually not made of one solid piece. Most wood cutting boards are typically constructed with several pieces glued together rather than just one solid block.
Whenever a block of wood is cut, it will result in the creation of three distinct surfaces. There are three types of surfaces, each of which have distinct features; these are labeled as end grain, edge grain, and face grain.
End Grain Wood
The surface of end grain wood is identical to the way it appeared when the tree was still in its natural growth state. The amount of this type of wood available in a tree is limited compared to other kinds, thus making it more costly.
The cutting boards with the end grain showing have the fibers displayed vertically. These chopping boards are kindest to knife blades.
Edge Grain Wood
The edge grain lumber is located at the outer edge of the wood plank, thus the name. This wood is much less expensive than other varieties, and it is also light in weight. Many home cooks prefer them for several reasons. They are economical, simple to take care of, and tidier than other kinds of grain.
Edge grain wood cutting boards do not display as much sign of food stains, and you can take away them rapidly with lukewarm sudsy water.
Face Grain Wood
The term “face grain” refers to the surface of the wood that can be seen when looking at it directly. The wood’s grain can be seen in the fibers and the tree rings that form its face. They are the most visually appealing, but do not last as long. The top layer is more pliable and can take in liquids and moisture faster when compared.
When making the decision to purchase a face grain cutting board, it is a matter of prioritizing between appearance and practicality. Nonetheless, minimal downsides are expected in the event that a home cook employs a cutting board for no more than an hour at one time.
Plastic Cutting Board
Using plastic instead of cutting boards is an option that is available, just as it is with many other products. Plastic cutting boards are inexpensive, lightweight, require virtually no care, and are simple to clean.
The convenience of plastic cutting boards for cooks is that they can generally be placed in the dishwasher. The dishes can withstand high temperatures during the sanitizing cycle of the dishwasher without being deformed or incurring other damage.
Even though plastic cutting boards are able to contain bacteria, they do not get rid of them like wooden cutting boards do. Unless they are cleaned suitably, the bacteria may spread. Hence, it is vital to make sure the plastic slicing boards are properly sanitized before putting them away.
Comparison of Plastic and Wood Cutting Boards
There are notable dissimilarities between plastic and wooden cutting boards. Wood has many advantages, but there are also advantages to selecting plastic that could be significant. This article provides a comprehensive analysis between wood and plastic cutting boards to assist in selecting the best one and describes the subsequent outcomes.
Hygiene is perhaps the most critical consideration. Utilizing a filthy cutting board can put you at risk for foodborne illness. Using a clean, disinfected cutting board will not only prevent cross-contamination, but it will also guarantee that the taste of each ingredient you chop is not compromised.
Despite this, any knife marks, indentations, and other minute openings serve as spots for bacteria to hide in and be transported. Using a plastic cutting board requires different care than a wooden one, so you must make sure it is properly disinfected. Thank goodness it isn’t difficult like a wood cutting board since you have the option to run it in the dishwasher.
Wood cutting boards, while more difficult to keep clean, tend to be more sanitary than their plastic counterparts as a result of natural factors, especially with proper care.
Winner: wood cutting boards
A wooden cutting board can be used for a lengthy period of time. You can always make a scratched item look as good as new by resurfacing it. Resurfacing plastic cutting boards is possible, but it is not as easy as sanding a wooden cutting board.
Wooden cutting boards generally endure more wear and tear than plastic ones throughout their life span. It won’t take as long before you need a new cutting board if it is made of plastic instead of wood. Scratches that penetrate deeply can cause considerable damage to plastic cutting boards as any liquids that come in contact with them will become stuck in the grooves or drip from beneath.
Winner: wood cutting boards
Plastic cutting boards are incredibly low-maintenance. No matter how long you have been using a certain dish or utensil, just put it in the dishwasher or let it soak for a while. Even if the plastic cutting board cannot be placed in the dishwasher, you can get rid of any leftover food by scrubbing it with a sponge and plenty of water.
Using these methods of cleaning should not be done on wood cutting boards. When washing a wood cutting board, utilize lukewarm water with detergent, rinse swiftly, pat down the surface, and hang up on its side to let air dry.
Minerals oil should be applied to the wood cutting boards every two weeks, depending on how often they are utilized. The use of mineral oil on wooden cutting boards increases their resistance to water and renews them. Read on how to care for a cutting board.
Winner: plastic cutting boards
Ease on Knives
Even the sturdiest knife will dull with use. It is certain that the surface that you are cutting your ingredients on makes a big difference. Plastic chopping boards will flatten the edges at a faster pace than wooden ones, specifically when you are completing tougher duties such as cutting through bones with a cleaver.
Knives will be less likely to become damaged if cutting on woods like maple, oak, and walnut, as opposed to plastic surfaces. If you are mindful and use the plastic cutting board properly, you can reduce the rate at which your knives become dull.
Wood is more gentle on knives than plastic, but plastic is better than other materials that can be used to create cutting boards. We will look at this further below.
Winner: wood cutting boards
It is a matter of opinion, but many people believe that natural wood has a more attractive appearance than plastic. Apart from the attractiveness of real wood due to its pattern of annual rings, numerous producers are exploring strategies to make their plastic cutting boards more aesthetically appealing. It may not be available in your neighbourhood store, but customised plastic cutting boards featuring your designs can draw attention and make them attractive to potential buyers.
Wood cutting boards have a more pleasing aesthetic than plastic ones, regardless of the design printed on them.
Winner: wood cutting boards
Last but not least, the price. Wood cutting boards cost more than plastic ones, but there is a wider selection to choose from.
For only twenty dollars, you can purchase a generous-size wooden chopping board. Increase your spending limit a bit more, and you’ll be able to buy one that will serve you for an extended period of time. Are you looking for something that is highly durable, soft on your knives, and made to a professional standard? Expect to spend upwards of $100. You should be able to locate a product that best fits your needs given the range of prices available.
Conversely, plastic chopping boards also come in varying price tags but are less expensive compared to wooden ones. You can buy sets of plastic cutting boards for a price under $20, so it would be easy to discard the boards that have been used frequently and replace them with new ones.
Winner: plastic cutting boards
Best Cutting Boards
Sonder Large End Grain Walnut Cutting Board
We firmly believe that the Sonder is the most superior cutting board available in the market. Sonder, made in Los Angeles, CA, puts its all into making an extraordinary item for your kitchen. The end-grain wood construction of this item has an antimicrobial design, which can help keep your kitchen hygienic and free of germs. This item does not merely depend on its weight to stay in position; it comes complete with tiny rubber ”pads” that reduce sliding. The material used to make this cutting board is wood, which is better than bamboo when it comes to avoiding being damaged by knives. We love the wide juice groove that catches the dripping liquids, so that your countertops stay clean and tidy. The size of the item was just right for our testers – not overly large and not too tiny to be practical.
The cost of this cutting board is its biggest disadvantage, being much higher than other high-quality hardwood boards and many times pricier than bamboo or plastic boards. The other downside is its lack of storability. This board is significantly thicker and heavier than traditional bamboo or plastic boards, so those accustomed to them may find it quite heavy. It is 1.5 inches thick and weighs about 10 pounds, so those with little room for storage may also struggle with it. We strongly advise getting the Sonder because it offers great quality, an anti-slip grip, and a stunning look – making it the preferable option for anyone looking for a first-rate wooden chopping board.
IMEKO TPU Cutting Board
If you are looking for an ideal bendable cutting board, the IMEKO TPU should be your top choice. This board will be worth the money for any serious home chef. This is an ideal addition to a cutting board that you don’t want to get soiled and contaminated with bacteria from jobs like slicing raw chicken. It is uncomplicated to clean the IMEKO, as it is simple to wipe and can be placed in the dish-washing machine. It remains visually intact and is much harder to cut than any hard or soft plastic cutting board tested. It does not incur extensive grooves, preventing bacteria from proliferating and enabling an average dishwasher to effectively clean it.
Although our review team is fond of this model as a secondary board, certain components prevent it from being chosen as their go-to board. This does not stay in one spot as well as some other items and is likely to become stained. Rather than being the first material we would use for a kitchen’s main cutting board, the IMEKO TPU is a simple-to-clean selection for any type of crude kitchen job such as working with poultry.
John Boos Block BBQBD Reversible Maple Wood
Boos Block is a renowned company when it comes to chopping surfaces, and their favored item is the BBQBD Reversible Maple Wood. This cutting board, originating from Illinois and renowned for its ability to fight bacteria and its friendliness towards knives, is an indispensable tool. The cut-out grooves of this object are deep enough for even the most untidy feast made from watermelon or beef. The structure of the item is quite solid, thus ensuring it stays securely in place, even though there are no rubber molded pads included.
This model has some drawbacks; it is substantial and clunky, so people with small kitchens will likely find it difficult to adjust to the 1.5-inch deep, 10 pound appliance. It is necessary to perform some routine upkeep on the object, which includes the application of either Boos Mystery Oil or a comparable product monthly. For people who like to cook, this is not a major issue, however it still needs more attention than plastic or composite boards, which don’t need to be looked after.
Farberware Plastic Cutting Board
Farberware cutting boards have been around for a long time and have achieved a lot of success in the plastic board selection. They are inexpensive, able to be washed in a dishwasher, don’t show marks or discoloring, and are straightforward to clean. They are constructed with a very tough material that is more resistant to being cut deeply compared to a number of plastic options.
The material used to make Farberware chopping boards is so hard that it is one of the toughest surfaces to cut with a knife amongst all boards on the market. They are not as resilient to becoming distorted in the dishwasher as some. Our experience has shown that the fabric will remain true the first time they are washed, but they will begin to become distorted with repeated laundering. Farberware could be a great choice for people who are budget-conscious and need to get furniture for an extra house, or if someone just wants to have additional slicing boards for their messier kitchen tasks.
The conclusion is that wooden chopping boards are much better than plastic ones when looking at the two side by side. It would be beneficial to invest in higher quality choices of both, so that you can save yourself a considerable amount of time and energy.