Cutting boards are kitchen essentials! For everything from cutting, chopping, dicing and every other food preparation. I have been a long time user of plastic cutting board, that is, until recently. Why is that? Have you every considered that using plastic cutting boards might just be the easiest way to actually eat plastic? If your cutting boards look anything like mine, they get nicked, cut and scratched. Guess where all the plastic shards end up? And those lovely little nicks and cuts are a favorite nesting spot for bacteria to grow. Hard plastics can contain bisphenol A, which makes plastic strong but can damage the reproductive system, disrupt hormones, mimics estrogen, and is linked to bread and prostate cancer. Sound appetizing?
Consider a better alternative…wooden cutting boards. My dad built me a fabulous sturdy cutting board last Christmas and I am now using it primarily. I love it! It is so much more solid, doesn’t slide around the counter as you put it to use, and cleans easily!
And no, plastic unfortunately is not more sanitary than wood boards just because you can put them in the dishwasher. According to Renee Loux in Easy Green Living:, “First dishwashers don’t get hot enough to sterilize – sorry foks. (Dishwashers typically reach temperatures of 120-140F, but solid surfaces need to be at a temperature of 250F for 15 minutes to be properly sterilized.) Second, washing plastic cutting boards wears them down, which may make more plastic leach into foods, especially fatty and oily foods.”
Which to choose?
The best wooden cutting boards out there are made from bamboo, but any wood cutting board will do. Bamboo is 100% Renewable resource and is harder and denser than most hard woods, it is16% harder than maple, which is the most common wood used for most cutting boards. After harvesting, bamboo grows back and can be re-harvested every 4 ½ years. Bamboo does not need re-planting. Most hardwood have a 30 to 60 year growth cycle.
Totally Bamboo is a highly recommended source that makes every effort to provide a safe and sustainable product. They use a non-toxic formaldehyde free food grade glue for their cutting boards. They range in price depending upon the size, but they will last longer than plastic by far and are actually quite reasonable.
How to care for wood cutting boards?
Don’t submerge it in water, and massage it gently with vegetable oil (olive oil or coconut oil) from time to time. Here is a simple homemade recipe for sanitizing your cutting boards:
Homemade Cutting Board Sanitizer
Courtesy of Renee Loux in Easy Green Living
I personally did not use the extract or oregano oil as they run a little expensive.
1/4 cup 3 percent hydrogen peroxide
1/4 cup white distilled vinegar
4 drops grapefruit seed extract (optional)
4 drops essential oil of oregano (optional)
1 Tbsp baking soda
Mix the hydrogen peroxide, vinegar, extract and essential oil in a spray bottle. Sprinkle the baking soda on the cutting board. I keep a small shaker bottle of baking soda next to my sink for this purpose. (It’s also a great tool to use for washing dishes!) Spray the board with the peroxide/vinegar mixture. Allow to fizz up and sit for a few moments. Wipe the board thoroughly with fresh water before using it. Keep the spray bottle beneath your sink for future use!
Still desiring an option similar to plastic? Well then, check out this Preserve By Recycline Paperstone Cutting Board made from recycled paper and BPA free!