Chopping Boards: A Buying Guide For Getting Your Hands On The Best

Chopping boards are manual tools that help in increasing the efficiency of your cooking, and also makes your work in the kitchen easier. But, choosing a chopping board for your kitchen is a lengthy task, as there are various factors that you have to keep in mind such as its material, durability, and sanitation.

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Kitchen tools can come in quite handy and be of tremendous help when it comes to cooking with efficiency. Cutting boards are one such tool because let’s be honest, nothing else in the kitchen comes close to the utility of a good chopping board. You use it to chop, dice and slice all kinds of veggies, fruits, dry fruits, and even meats. Often, it is used as a base to clean salad leaves and make sandwiches. A chopping board is perhaps one of the most used tools in the kitchen, second only to, perhaps a knife. While a lot of electric choppers are available in the market and do indeed help you chop up large portions quickly, a chopping board is still preferred by many on a day to day basis and has held its position as a more efficient and a more popular way of cutting veggies. However, with various materials used to make the cutting boards available in the market, the decision to choose the appropriate board-type for your needs can be a difficult task. But, worry not, for we have put together the best set of tips and guidelines that’ll help you go through each of these chopping board-types and make your task easy.

Related Reading: We review products over days, and sometimes weeks, so you can shop better. Read our Best Chopping Board For You Kitchen Review here.

Cutting Board-Types | Types Of Chopping Boards

1. Plastic Board (Polyvinyl Acetate)

If you are looking for cutting boards that are cheaper and that can produce the required result, then cutting boards made out of polyvinyl acetate are widely available in markets today. While plastic chopping boards aren’t recommended for hygienic purposes, these are different and the surface doesn’t allow much bacterial growth. However, these are not cheap and usually recommended only for professional use in kitchens.

2. Plastic Board (High Density PolyEthylene)

Very much like its predecessor (Polyvinyl acetate), the cutting boards which are made up of high-density polyethylene appear to be more cheap, light, and not to mention, these type of cutting boards are more widely available than any other types. However, unlike the boards made out of polyvinyl acetate, these boards are soft, which means that during the time of cutting, it may also cut through the surface of the boards and produce marks. This further reduces its hygienic factor, since these marks can prove to be a great place for bacteria to reside if not washed properly.

3. Wooden Chopping Boards

In order to sum it up in a single sentence ‘, the chopping boards made out of wood are often considered as the best choice no matter how much of a work-load you have.’ Out of the various wood-type chopping boards, the ‘end-grain’ wood type is more durable and resilient towards the action of cutting, and most importantly, it has a self-healing property that makes its hygiene factor far superior than that of those made out of plastic.

a buying guide for a chopping board
Chopping boards made out of wood are highly popular and widely used form of chopping boards, which are available in two varieties namely ‘end-gran’ and ‘edge-grain’

4. Rubber Chopping Boards

The chopping boards made out of rubber are considered to be in the same category as the one made out of plastic. Apart from the fact that the rubber chopping boards are heavier and costlier than the plastic ones, its hygienic factor is no better than the one made out of polyvinyl acetate. It is considered to easier to clean and is good for knife edges.

5. Glass Chopping Boards

Needless to say, these aren’t practical. We wonder if these are really used by anyone on a routine. It doesn’t matter if they are inexpensive or cheap, chopping boards made out of glass tend to dull your knife, and due to the fragility of the glass itself, small parts of glass could easily chip off with the help of the knife and mix up with the veggies. So, the usage of the glass chopping board must be avoided.

6. Bamboo Chopping Boards

These chopping boards made out of bamboo can act as a great alternative for plastic or glass chopping boards. In order to make these boards, the bamboo is carefully chosen based on factors such as maturation, marking’s and size. However, the usage of bamboo in a board can have adverse effects on the sharpness of the knife, as it is known to the dull it, further resulting in the formation of cracks in its surface. Also, watch out for the chemicals being used to make the bamboo surface fit for cutting.

7. Silicone Chopping Boards

Similar to rubber, the chopping boards made out of silicone appear to have no impact on the sharpness of the knife, and easy to clean. However, unlike rubber, silicone has a better self-healing property just like the one made out of wood. On the other hand, silicone chopping boards appear to be more heavy and expensive, which further results in the lowering of their popularity.

8. Steel Chopping Boards

Yes, though not so popular, chopping boards made out of steel are also available in the market. Similar to glass, steel is more durable and easy to clean, however, depending on the type of steel used for its manufacturing, it can wear the edges of the knives, and can be noisy.

Chopping Board Sanitation (Cleaning) | How To Clean Chopping Boards

Being an integral part of the kitchen, the cleanliness of the chopping board plays an important part in the overall hygiene of the entire food preparation process. Now, we know that for an experienced person, cleaning of the kitchen items can be a task of great ease, however, when it comes to cleaning chopping boards, there are various other things of importance that one should take note of.

For example, as we have mentioned before, the cutting marks left on the surface of the board prove to be a great place of resting for bacteria and other pathogens. Hence, it is important that you maintain and clean your board thoroughly every once in a while. One of the best ways of doing it is by using a diluted soapy solution, which is a great way of disinfecting the board. Normally used for a wooden board, the procedure of thoroughly rinsing it with salt and then washing it off helps in the removal of the bad odor as well. Rubbing a half-cut lemon along with salt on the chopping board is also a great way of removing odors and stains.

cleaning a chopping board
Application of salt and then thoroughly scrubbing it over the surface of the chopping board can help in the removal of its bad odor

In plastic chopping boards, unlike the ones that are made out of other materials, the bacterial growth cannot pierce through the surface, thus its rough surface provides bacteria a place to reside.

Make sure that you use different boards for raw meat items and veggies or other ready-to-eat food items, for it is the most common cause of cross-contamination. And also avoid using a cloth to clean the board, as the bacteria from the board can get attached to the cloth and then spread all over the kitchen.

Watch Video: Essential Factors To Look For While Buying Chopping Board For Your Kitchen.

Plastic Vs Wood

Plastic and wood are two of the most popular type of chopping boards that are used all across the world, and to be honest, they are also the most hygienic and durable as compared to other chopping boards made out of glass or bamboo.

If you take into account the sanitary factors concerning the chopping boards, then it is safe to say that the chopping boards made out of wood have an upper hand over the ones that are made of plastic. The sole reason behind this fact is that hardwood does not allow scarring on its surface easily. Even the fine cuts that do appear, do not allow bacteria to thrive in them. Simple cleaning with a soapy solution immediately after use, is mostly good enough to maintain hygiene.

Plastic, on the other hand, tends to be more durable and is affected more when struck by a knife. Moreover, because of the more grainy surface, it’s tough to clean the deep cuts and scars.

Types Of Wood Chopping Boards

Though the consumer may not spot the difference immediately, the chopping boards that are made out of wood are of three different types: End grain, and Edge grain. And each of these types, though not at first, differs from each other in the fields of durability and cleanliness.

1. End Grain

As the name suggests, these types of boards are made from the end-pieces of wood that are stuck together. It is quite easy to differentiate these from the edge-grain type chopping boards, as the end-grain chopping boards usually come in a checkboard pattern. Moreover, it has a self-healing property, as the fibers get back close to each other after being cut by the knife.

2. Edge Grain

Unlike end-grain boards, the edge-grain board types are made out of the parallel pieces of wood that are glued together. Also unlike end-grain, these boards overtime develop crack marks by extensive use of a knife and are also responsible for dulling your knives faster as compared to the end-grain types. Thus, they are cheaper as compared to end grain.

edge-grain chopping board
The edge-grain chopping board are cheaper as compared to the end-grain, as they have quite lower shelf life and can dull the edge of a knife

So, in the end, it would be safe to say that wood is best and that too hardwood. There’s a whole lot of variety out there, choose wisely.

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