How to Clean a Cutting Board? Expert Guide

How do you know when to replace your old cutting board with a new one? If your cutting board has been a victim of endless cuts and bruises and has become a home to filthy flies and dirty bacteria — then this guide is for you.

At the end of this detailed guide, you’ll learn how to clean a cutting board while it still remains food-safe, and how to prolong its lifespan with some insider tips that only experts know.

And not only that, but you’ll also discover the answer to another important question:

When it is officially dead?

You’ll discover all that today.

So, make sure you make it till the end of the post.

Let’s start.

How to Clean a Cutting Board — Types, Tips, Tricks, Techniques.

Cutting boards are of a few types. The method of their cleaning varies, what works for one type, will not work for the other.

These types are:

  • Wood
  • Bamboo
  • Composite
  • Flexible
  • Plastic
  • Rubber
  • Glass
  • Marble

Here’s the cleaning method for each type. (Skip to the type you own)

How to Clean a Wood Cutting Board

Wood Cutting Board
Wood Cutting Board

The ideal place for washing everything in the kitchen is the dishwasher.

Well, you’re wrong.

Never, ever put your wood cutting board in the dishwasher.

Why? Because it will crack and warp the wood material, and you’ll end up having to buy a new one. Also, minor cuts and grooves and pours (the ones even our eyes can’t see) in the wood cutting boards, are a natural and ideal place for killer bacteria to produce their babies and live happily.

Here’s what you should do instead to clean your wooden board:

With Soap and Water:

  • After every use, hand wash the board immediately with water and dish soap (soaps that are food-safe)
  • Dry it using a dish towel or paper towel.

With Vinegar:

  • Run vinegar over it.
  • Dry clean it with a neat and wet cloth.

Remember, vinegar is not ideal for the boards that you use to cut fish, chickens, and raw meats.

With Bleach:

  • Create a solution of bleach and water. (1 teaspoon for every quarter of water)
  • Run the mixture over the board, then pour hot water over it, and rinse it with a dry clean cloth.

Insider Tips To Prolong The Lifespan Of Wood Cutting Boards:

  • Soak the board with mineral oil weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly, depending upon how frequently you use it.
  • Let the oil sink in for a few hours. It will thicken the pores of the wood.
  • Finally, wipe the extra oil on the surface with a dry cloth.

Note: Only use mineral oil; vegetable or olive oil will leave a rotten smell.

How To Clean A Plastic Cutting Board

Plastic Cutting Board
Plastic Cutting Board

Unlike wood, plastic cutting boards are generally safe to wash in the dishwasher. But you shouldn’t expose plastic to burning hot water frequently, it might cause warping.

So, apart from washing in the dishwasher, here’s another method:

  • You have to create a sanitizing solution of water and bleach. Use one teaspoon of bleach to one-quarter of water.
  • Then wipe the surface of the board using this solution, and then rinse thoroughly with hot water.
  • Let the board dry before you chop veggies or meats.

Here’s another method that is especially great for removing stains from your plastic cutting board:

  • You’ve to make a paste. Use one teaspoon of water, one teaspoon of baking soda, and one teaspoon of salt.
  • Rub-clean it over the surface of the board, and then wash it, and dry clean it with a damp cloth.

Insider Tips To Prolong The Life Of Plastic Cutting Boards:

Plastic cutting boards are resistant to cuts, but if you see scoring on the board, here’s what you can try: Remove loose/fabric particles of the plastic by using a steel scouring pad. And then use a sand belt to smooth out the surface.

How to Clean a Bamboo Cutting Board

Bamboo Cutting Board
Bamboo Cutting Board

Bamboo has a very high density, and therefore, it won’t break or crack easily, as opposed to wood. Bamboo cutting boards are safer against sharp knives in your kitchen, and therefore, safer against dreary bacteria.

In a nutshell, you’re less worried about Bamboo boards.

But, just like any other board, they need regular cleaning as well. Here’s how to do it:

  • Create a mixture of any of these cleaning agents with hot water: White vinegar, dish soap, or bleach.
  • Scrub, scrub, scrub. Deep clean it with the mixture until all the spots have vanished.
  • Dry clean it with the dishwasher towel or paper towel immediately after you run the hot water mixture over it.

Insider Tips To Prolong The Life Of Bamboo Cutting Boards:

Use mineral oil to wipe the surface of the board, and then let the oil sink in for a few hours. After that, clean the extra oil with a towel. And you’re all set.

However, you can take a step further, if you want.

Take a fresh juicy lemon, cut it in half with the knife, and rub it over the board. The sharp and sour acidity of the lemon will destroy any leftovers or build-ups on the surface.

Read More: Top 9 Vacuum Cleaners Under $200

How To Clean A Rubber Cutting Board

Rubber Cutting Board
Rubber Cutting Board

Rubber cutting boards are easy on your hands and pockets. They’re less likely to have deep cuts in them due to their cut-resistant surface, and they are easy to clean as compared to any other board type.

Here’s how:

  • Simply hand-wash or scrub your rubber board with dish soap and water.
  • That’s it.

Insider Tips To Prolong The Life Of Rubber Cutting Boards:

  • Don’t dish wash your rubber cutting board with boiling hot water.
  • If you see a growing number of scores on the surface, sand it down with the sand belt.

Other than that, you need to replace it with a new one when the board is all weary and warped.

How To Clean A Flexible Cutting Board

Flexible Plastic Cutting Board
Flexible Plastic Cutting Board

As the name suggests, flexible boards allow you to shape them in any way you want. That makes their manageability easy. One thing more, they’re made of resin plastic, mostly, so they’re more anti-bacterial.

Just like their manageability, their cleansing is also easy-peasy.

  • Simply wash them in the dishwasher with warm water after every use.

Insider Tips To Prolong The Life Of Flexible Cutting Boards:

Be very careful when using your knife over the board. A few visible cuts and you have to buy a new one.

How To Clean A Composite Cutting Board

Composite Cutting Board
Composite Cutting Board

The most durable, and the most temperature-enduring board, of up to 250 degrees Fahrenheit, composite cutting boards are the best boards to have in your kitchen. Some folks even use it as a pizza peel in the oven.

Here’s how to clean it:

  • Simply leave it in the dishwasher for a few minutes.
  • Rinse and dry it.

Insider Tips To Prolong The Life Of Composite Cutting Boards:

Not really an insider, but just be careful with your knives. These boards are resistant to cuts and grooves. But when you see too many cuts, and when it leaves a bad odor after you wash it, it is time to replace it.

You May Also Read: Best Refrigerator Under $1000

How To Clean A Glass Cutting Board

Glass Cutting Board
Glass Cutting Board

Mostly, these are made of tempered glass and have a thin, lightweight body. Apart from looking cool, their surface is non-porous, cut-resistant, and heat-enduring. That makes them food-safe. But beware: knives might slip on the slippery surface.

Also, these eye-catching boards are not ideal for your brave knives in the kitchen.

Here’s how to clean:

  • First run warm water over it to erase any leftovers, after every use.
  • Then use soapy water, and rinse it thoroughly.
  • Dry it with a towel.

Insider Tips To Prolong The Life Of Glass Cutting Boards:

Just regularly wash it and be careful with it when and wherever you store it. A tiny slip and fall and you’re out there buying a new one.

How To Clean A Marble Cutting Board

Marble Cutting Board
Marble Cutting Board

Marble-cutting boards will look so beautiful in your kitchen. They come with those all-new cool and colorful abstract designs. But the material is so hard that your knives will become dull quickly. So you have to be careful with that.

Here’s how to clean it:

  • Use a mixture of hot water, liquid soap, and white vinegar. (two teaspoons of liquid soap, one cup of white vinegar, and two cups of warm water)
  • After rinsing it with the mixture, dry it with a paper towel or dishtowel.

Insider Tips To Prolong The Life Of Marble Cutting Boards:

Never use acids or bleach. And never use boiling hot water. Because that will either crack the board or sway the deep finish.

Important: When To Replace Your Cutting Board?

USDA says you must replace your cutting boards when they show cuts or grooves that are too hard to clean. Also, no matter which type you own, if you smell a rotten bad odor from your cutting board, it’s high time you toss them.

But, then, what’s next? Which model or brand you should consider?

You might want to see what solid options you’ve right now. And this is why we have created a list of, hands down, the best cutting boards available in 2021. Give it a read.


So that was it, a thorough guide explaining how to clean a cutting board.

Just remember, no matter which type you own, regular maintenance is crucial. If you spend enough time daily cleaning it, you can extract every dime you spent on it.

All in all, I really hope I’ve been helpful.

Tell me in the comment section, which type do you have right now? And, ehm, what does it look like? A total mess or still respectable?

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