A cutting board is a commonly used tool in the kitchen besides a knife. The flat, sturdy surface is perfect to prepare food while protecting your counters and plates from getting scratched. It can also be used as a support for hot pots and pans.
Cutting boards come in different sizes and can be used for simply cutting small garnishes or carving a large piece of meat. The materials are wood, plastic or bamboo and are either thick for heavy duty tasks or quite thin.
At home we only use wooden cutting boards, but not for any reason other than we just seem to love wood. We use ours on multiple occasions and for different reasons such as serving trays, but we understand that everyone is different and that’s why we have selected multiple materials and qualities.
- Best wood – John Boos Block Chop-N-Slice Maple Wood Edge Grain Reversible
- Best bamboo set – Organic Bamboo Cutting Board with Juice Groove (3-Piece Set)
- Best plastic set – Gorilla Grip Original Oversized Cutting Board, 3 Piece
- Best multi-purpose – Seville Classics Easy-to-Clean Bamboo Cutting Board
- Best flexible – Dexas Heavy Duty Grippmat Flexible Cutting Board Set
- Best budget – Carrollar Flexible Plastic Cutting Board Mats
How to choose the best cutting board?
A good cutting board needs to be flat with a good grip. It should be large enough with sufficient space for carving or chopping. It should be easy to clean and maintain without retaining stains or odours.
Good cutting boards feel good under the knife and can handle any food from dry goods to juicy ingredients.
Wooden boards are usually of higher quality, and often, more durable. Plus, wood is best to maintain the sharpness of your knives. Of course, that requires a good kitchen knife sharpener, too.
However, plastic boards are cheaper, but they’re lighter and easier to maintain. Bamboo boards are known to be very strong but can also be very tough on the knives.
Maintenance of cutting boards
The most important thing is to avoid cross contamination when preparing ingredients. As mentioned before, we always scrub our wooden cutting boards by hand between uses. A strong brush and soapy water will sanitize the board during intense scrubbing.
If you don’t like scrubbing, it is advisable to use separate boards, often plastic and colour coded, for vegetables, fish or meat. These are dishwasher safe and because you have several, the washing can be done with the rest of the dishes.
If ever your boards have difficult stains or strong smells, you can wash them with vinegar or rub them with a paste of salt and water. Scrape the paste off the next morning and rinse well. All stains and smells should be gone.
Cracking of wooden boards can be avoided. Simply avoid leaving them submerged in water, and always dry them correctly and oil them regularly.
Our premium selection of cutting boards
This cutting board might not have whistles and bells, but it is our personal choice. It is made from sustainably sourced, hand-selected maple and comes with a sustainability certification.
There are no grooves in the larger boards but they are reversible and pretty lightweight, versatile, and easy on knives. Only hand wash, dry thoroughly and oil regularly. There is a 1 year warranty against defects in workmanship and materials.
Best bamboo set – Organic Bamboo Cutting Board with Juice Groove (3-Piece Set)
You get 3 pieces in this set – a small board on a trip, a medium-sized one for small chopping tasks, and the big one for carving and more heavy cutting jobs.
The built-in side handles of this attractively designed board are handy when using the board as a serving tray.
Although this company states that this bamboo board is easy on knives, keep in mind that the strenght of bamboo will always challenge the sharpness of your knives. The grooves are perfect to catch juices from meat and other juicy ingredients.
Related: Best knife block sets
Best plastic set – Gorilla Grip Original Oversized Cutting Board, 3 Piece
This durable set is the most popular choice on Amazon. The set contains 3 boards in different sizes which are handy for all your chopping and cutting needs.
The strong rubber border and handle help keep the boards from sliding on countertops. The juice grooves are deep enough to catch juices so that counters stay clean during food preparation.
This brand is of a nonporous design which won’t splinter, crack or peel after many uses and it is dishwasher safe. The board is reversible but has no grooves on the backside.
Best multi-purpose – Seville Classics Easy-to-Clean Bamboo Cutting Board
The durable bamboo construction is sustainable and includes 7 brightly color-coded cutting board mats that make clean up easy and help prevent cross contamination when preparing fruits, vegetables, meat, fish, poultry, dough, baked goods, and grating cheese.
The flexible cutting mats are BPA free and designed to fit into the top surface of the cutting board. They can easily be stored inside the cutting board when not in use. The non-slip silicone feet prevent the cutting board from slipping and sliding on your kitchen countertop.
Best flexible – Dexas Heavy Duty Grippmat Flexible Cutting Board Set
This set of four brightly coloured cutting boards are lightweight and flexible. They are non-porous, non-absorbent and the non-slip backing on the back side of each cutting board grips to counter surfaces for safety. This also means that the boards are non reversible.
As with all other plastic and rubber boards, these are dishwasher safe.
Related: Best knife sharpeners
Best budget – Carrollar Flexible Plastic Cutting Board Mats
The colour coded cutting mats are made of BPA free material and built to last. The small flexible kitchen mats have a gripped bottom that could be put on most surfaces. However, for extra stability it is best to place them on a towel.
The boards are lightweight, flexible and dishwasher safe. Each cutting board is easy to store and curl to a certain angle, which is helpful to pour the chopped food directly and quickly for cooking or other use.
Each tool in your kitchen must fit your personal preferences and needs. A cutting board is important but your choice will depend on your budget, use and preferred material. Depending on whether you cook sporadically or daily, you will need something basic or more sturdier. All these factors will help you decide on the perfect cutting board for you.