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August 14, 2019

Learn the Truth About Butcher Block Cutting Boards Myths


butcher block cutting boardsThough many people consider butcher block cutting boards for their kitchen, there are so many myths about the surface that have been circulating for a large number of years, that it can be difficult to know what information is true, and what is simply inaccurate.  Among the most popular beliefs about butcher block cutting boards are that they are a struggle to maintain, they are easy to scratch, they stain easily, and are they not resistant to water. 

These myths have been passed around and passed down from one generation to the next, altering the perception we have over what remains the preferred cutting and chopping surface for professional chefs and  meat cutters.  That said, today’s butcher block cutting boards are made in a way that keeps their required maintenance to a bare minimum and that makes them a great deal cleaner and more durable than those of generations past.  Get to know the truth about butcher block cutting boards myths so that you can make the right choice for your kitchen.

Myth: butcher block cutting boards are easily scratched

Though butcher block cutting boards have held a reputation for being easy to scratch, the truth is that they are no easier to scratch than any other kind of cutting board.  The reputation was likely the result of confusion between a wood plank cutting surface and one made out of actual butcher block.  The difference is the construction of the two types of cutting board.  Butcher block cutting boards are made in a way that uses the grain of the wood to its best advantage to resist scratches without dulling the knives and cutting implements.

Myth: butcher block cutting boards are easily stained

As butcher block cutting boards are made of wood, many people associate the ease of staining of many wooden surfaces with this material.  While this can be true when butcher block cutting boards are not properly maintained, by simply giving the surface a treatment with mineral oil or another surface protector, any moisture will not be absorbed into the wood and will therefore not stain easily.  Any stains or water should be wiped up immediately, as they should be from any other kind of material.

Myth: butcher block cutting boards are a high maintenance product

Butcher block cutting boards require treatment in order to maintain the beauty of their surface.  For this reason, many people assume that they are a high maintenance kitchen item.  However, the maintenance that is required is actually a simple oiling using a mineral oil or other food-safe product. 

Myth:  butcher block cutting boards are easily damaged by heat

Though many people believe that the wood or binding product in butcher block cutting boards is not very heat resistant, the truth is that it has significantly greater heat resistance than plastic or engineered stone.  Though it is not recommended that exceptionally hot items be placed onto the surface, as burn marks can eventually result, it should also be noted that if this type of damage does occur, it can be sanded out.  Hot pots and pans from the stove are not generally hot enough to create this type of mark.

Myth: butcher block cutting boards are a breeding ground for bacteria

Any surface, including butcher block cutting boards, but also plastic, glass, and other materials, have the ability to retain bacteria.  The issue at hand is whether or not the surface can be disinfected.  If a food preparation surface made out of any material is not properly disinfected, bacteria will be able to grow on it.  By properly cleaning butcher block cutting boards, they can be kept very sterile.  Moreover, woods naturally contain antibacterial properties, which allows butcher block cutting boards to help you to fight the battle against bacterial growth.

As you can see much of the common knowledge about butcher block cutting boards is actually myths and misunderstandings.  Now that you better understand the material, you can make the decision as to whether you’d like to include it in your kitchen.

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