What’s the best cutting board? If you’re an average chef in your kitchen, you’ve probably asked yourself this question many times, but haven’t been able to come up with a straight answer. There are so many options out there that it can seem impossible to figure out which one will be the best choice for your needs and style of cooking. Don’t worry—all it takes is some knowledge about what makes a good cutting board and how to shop for it before you can make an informed decision on what you need to keep your kitchen working safely and efficiently.
One of the biggest factors in choosing a cutting board is material. Bamboo, plastic, and glass all have their own qualities that make them great for certain uses. For example, bamboo cutting board is solid options that are durable and can withstand everyday wear and tear; they’re also heat-resistant so you can throw your cutting board in your dishwasher without worrying about it melting.
Glass on the other hand is sleek and more sanitary than wood or plastic because it doesn’t absorb bacteria as wood or plastic does; on top of that, glass won’t expand or warp when you put it in a dishwasher so no matter how often you use it, there won’t be any warping. If you’re looking for long-term value and durability-though, glass might not be right for you—it isn’t cheap and if it breaks, repairs can prove tricky. The plastic’s not exactly environmentally friendly but its low cost and flexibility give it an advantage over other materials: its affordable price makes it popular with budget shoppers while its flexibility makes storage easier than with other materials—plus, its nonabsorbent quality makes cleaning easier too. Consider what features best fit your lifestyle before making a purchase decision!
Plastic cutting board might be more affordable than wooden or glass versions. But they can easily get damaged and harbor bacteria more readily. You can’t toss them in your dishwasher, either. Instead, you’ll need to hand-wash these boards carefully; you should also wash the plastic board by hand when switching from meat products (which may contain harmful bacteria) to produce items like tomatoes (which can absorb bacteria). Wooden cutting board is easy to clean and don’t trap odors or bacteria—they also tend not to dull your knives.
The Right Size
The perfect cutting board for your kitchen should be large enough to comfortably hold all of your ingredients, but not so big that it takes up too much space on your countertop. It’s important that you pay attention to measurements; if you end up with a cutting board that is too small, you’ll struggle when chopping. And, conversely, if your cutting board is way bigger than what you need (and can store), you’re going to lose some precious workspace in your kitchen—what’s worse, it may even get in the way! For most home cooks and professionals alike, we recommend starting with a 10-by-15-inch rectangular cutting board. This size will work well for kitchens of any size and fits easily into drawers and cupboards.
However, if you cook professionally or have a lot of storage space in your kitchen, you might want to consider investing in an oversized model—these tend to offer more stability and room to work than smaller boards. Whichever shape or size works best for you, just make sure that you invest in one made from quality materials like wood or bamboo. You don’t want an overly flimsy model that flexes under pressure or one that will absorb stains from fruits or vegetables after use.
If you opt for wood, look for ones that are crafted from hardwood such as oak or maple—wood is dense and durable and won’t warp over time. When choosing a wooden board, also keep in mind that softer woods such as red oak and white pine can dent or scratch more easily than harder species such as maple and cherry. Keep in mind: There are three different styles of cutting boards: plastic, glass, and wood. While plastic and glass models tend to be dishwasher safe, they may feel less stable than their wooden counterparts—especially when dealing with heavier cuts of meat. Plus, both types can damage knives since they do not prevent blades from coming into contact with surfaces below them.
However, these models do prevent cross-contamination between raw meat products and other foods such as cooked chicken or fresh produce. Wooden cutting board, on the other hand, allow you to chop without worrying about damaging your knife blade because they separate food items while allowing them to rest flat against a solid surface. That said, while wood prevents cross-contamination between raw meat and ready-to-eat meals better than its plastic or glass counterparts, it does come with its own set of issues related to cleaning. More specifically, wood boards need to be washed by hand due to deep grooves which trap dirt inside their crevices.
The color of your cutting board is another important factor in finding a quality product. The USDA has determined that wood and plastic boards should be light-colored so that food particles can be seen. Foodborne illness can result from not being able to see if any harmful bacteria is present on your cutting board, such as salmonella or E. coli. Darker colors also show less damage and wear and tear than lighter colors do. If you’re searching for a sturdy cutting board, try purchasing one made from thick material, since thinner ones tend to warp easier and crack under pressure.
Cleanliness is Next to Godliness
Your cutting board is arguably the most important tool in your kitchen. It’s where you chop and dice and whisk and mix, and choosing a cutting board that does those tasks well—and stays clean—is of utmost importance. Keeping your cutting board clean is next to godliness. Make sure you sanitize your cutting board after every use, and invest in a durable cutting board that will last you many years’!