Almost every single kitchen has at least one cutting board. Whether they are wood, plastic, bamboo, or some other material — they can be difficult to clean.
We use them to cut all sorts of foods from raw meats to vegetables. Food and bacteria get stuck in the grooves from the knife and can be hazardous to your health. Nasty stains never look good either.
Here are 13 easy ways to clean your cutting board. You probably have all these products in your home already!
Before you throw out your current cutting board, try these helpful tips — they work wonders.
1. Use hydrogen peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide is great at killing bacteria — that’s why most people have some in their first-aid kit. It’s also the perfect way to kill bacteria on your cutting board after cutting things like raw chicken and pork. First, wipe down the cutting board with a little vinegar. Follow it up with a paper towel soaked in hydrogen peroxide.
2. Clean with a bleach mixture
If you have a butcher block cutting board or a cutting board counter top, use a bleach mixture to sanitize the surfaces. Create the mixture with one tablespoon of bleach and 2 quarts of water; dip a brush into the mixture and scrub the board in a small circular motion. Wipe with a lightly damp paper towel then buff with a dry cloth towel.
Vinegar is a miracle ingredient — you can probably find vinegar on every single DIY cleaning product list on the internet, but for a good reason! This is the perfect way to clean a wood cutting board. Use a spray bottle to spray a water and vinegar mixture onto the board — rinse and let it dry. As mentioned above, an optional additional step would be hydrogen peroxide.
4. Get rid of stains with petroleum jelly
If a wooden cutting board becomes submerged in water, it can leave unsightly water stains. To get rid of them, rub a bit of petroleum jelly into the stain and let sit for around 12 hours. Use a cloth or a paper towel to wipe off the petroleum jelly — the jelly should be gone and so should the stain!
5. Deodorize a stinky board with apples or potatoes
Cutting boards can become a little smelly after a while. Freshen them up with some grated apples or potatoes. Grate either an apple or a potato and spread them on your cutting board; let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Rinse off the board, and it should should smell fresh.
6. Plain old dish soap
This one might be pretty obvious, but it does work! It is handy for cleaning off any bloodstains from cutting raw meat and to also disinfect. Soak a cloth in some soapy water and give the board a good scrub. Rinse the board and use a clean cloth to wipe off any extra soapy residue.
7. Rehydrate a wooden board with mineral oil and beeswax
Other sites might recommend using olive oil to polish or rehydrate your wooden cutting board; however, olive oil can go rancid and left off a nasty smell. It’s better to use mineral oil and beeswax — spread the oil and a little beeswax over the board with a cloth, leave on overnight. In the morning, wipe excess oil off with a clean cloth.
8. Plastic can go in the dishwasher
If you have a dirty plastic cutting board and a dishwasher — you’re good to go! Some people might be hesitant to put their cutting boards in the dishwasher, but as long as it’s plastic, it’s totally fine. Make sure the dishwasher is on the hottest setting to kill any bacteria.
9. Lemon and salt
An all-natural, yummy-smelling way to clean your cutting board is with a raw lemon and coarse salt. First rub the cutting board with lemon, then sprinkle salt all over the cutting board; let it sit for 15-20 minutes. Use the bottom side of that same half a lemon to scrub the board — add more juice if it seems to be too dry. Rinse with water and dry.
10. Baking soda paste
Pour some baking soda and a bit of water on your cutting board to create the consistency of a paste. Rub the board vigorously until it starts to release the odors that were trapped on the board. Rinse with water and then dry it with a dishtowel — all odors should be gone.
11. Clean grime with white toothpaste
Much like cleaning hardwood floors with white toothpaste, you can also use it to clean your cutting board. Mix toothpaste with a little bit of baking soda and scrub the cutting board with a toothbrush, going with the grain. Once the entire board has been scrubbed, rinse off with water.
12. Pop it in the microwave
This is a super handy trick for those with plastic cutting boards. After washing the board with soap and water, wipe it down with the cut side of a lemon. Stick the board into the microwave for 1 minute, and it will be disinfected and ready to go.
13. No fresh lemon? Lemon juice is okay!
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If you don’t have fresh lemons on hand, that’s no problem — bottled lemon juice works just as well. Sprinkle a generous amount of salt onto your cutting board and add enough lemon juice to create a paste. Scrub the paste over the board using a cloth, or a sponge then let it sit for a couple of hours before rinsing.
featured image credit: One Little Project