Besides the obvious positives that come with using a wood cutting board, how they maintain the sharpness of your knife’s edge, the cleanliness of a well-maintained board, and the enhanced durability; they also feel great.
They’re more expensive than the other materials, but you definitely get your money’s worth.
Wood cutting boards last!
You’ve never heard of someone inheriting their grandparents’ plastic cutting board, have you?
Your best bet for a quality cutting board is one made of wood.
So we’ve found the best material, now we face another question: which type of wood?
There are two important criteria for which wood is best for making cutting boards:
The Wood Should Be Closed Grain Hardwood (But Not Too Hard)
A closed grain hardwood is the best wood for cutting boards for a few reasons.
Closed grain wood has smaller pores, therefore it’s less likely to warp from contact with moisture.
According to a study by Dean O. Cliver of UC Davis, these pores also contribute to the cleanliness of a wood cutting board. The porousness of wood actually causes bacteria to sink deep into wooden boards away from the cutting surface.
Of course, regular care is still necessary to keep your wooden cutting boards clean. A nice rinse with soapy water will do the trick. But you can take it a step further by trying one of these cleaning methods.
Boards made with closed grain hardwood are also friendly to your knives.
However, it’s important that the wood isn’t too hard if you’re going to be using it often and don’t want to be sharpening your knives all the time.
For example, teak is a strong closed grain hardwood. But you’ll find that such a hard wood will dull your knives much quicker than a walnut or maple cutting board.
These boards are thicker than flat panel boards, so they don’t warp or split as easily.
They’re also usually thinner than end grain boards, making them lighter and easier to handle. You won’t have to warm up before carrying your edge grain cutting board from your kitchen counter to the sink.
Edge grain boards are an excellent middle ground for price and quality.
However, scratches are more visible on edge grain board wood. So if you’re going for a more aesthetically pleasing kitchen, you may want to spend the extra money for an end grain board.
The wood pieces of these boards are joined together so the end grain makes up the cutting surface.
The end grain is the short end of a typical piece of wood.
When a blade slices onto this part of the wood grain, the wood fibers behave like a broom’s bristles and move apart, letting the object pass between them. Lift the blade and the fibers return to their original position.