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This is the Safest Cutting Board You Can Use

If you're not sure whether plastic or wooden cutting boards are better, you need to read this.
veggies and knives on cutting board

If you already have the knife set of your dreams (and what cook doesn't?), you'll want to make sure it has an equally high-quality companion. We are, of course, referring to cutting boards. When you're shopping for a cutting board, the most important decision is "wooden or plastic?" We asked chefs to weigh in on the pros and cons of each. Here's what they had to say about which type of cutting board is really better.

And for more tips, here are 12 Ways You're Ruining Your Kitchen Knives.

Wooden cutting boards

Woman chopping up vegetables to make plant based vegetarian bowl
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Pros: Stephen Parker, Corporate Executive Chef at Lot15 in New York City, says that wooden cutting boards last longer and are more durable than their plastic counterparts. "Wood boards harbor fewer bacteria than plastic and can also be resurfaced should they become damaged," he says.

Cons: Parker says that the downside of wooden boards' durability is that they tend to be on the heavier side. They also require a few extra minutes of care following use because they should be hand washed and not cleaned in the dishwasher.

Cynthia Chico, Chef and Kitchen Manager at Conrad New York Downtown, shared the same intel, noting that wooden boards, specifically those made from thicker woods, require more maintenance and TLC. "You'll have to invest in good oil and ensure it doesn't get too moist," says Chico, adding that the board must be wiped down well after each and every use.

RELATED: Your ultimate restaurant and supermarket survival guide is here!

Plastic cutting boards

Cutting rotisserie chicken
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Pros: "Plastic cutting boards are great in the way that they're easy to wash and relatively inexpensive to replace should they become damaged," says Parker.

Chico also describes plastic boards as "easier to maintain" and notes that they can be cleaned in a dishwasher.

Cons: Due to the natural wear and tear that comes along with repetitive use, Parker says plastic cutting boards run the risk of harboring leftover bacteria that can't be washed out in the dishwasher. So, even though a plastic board is less expensive than a wooden one, you may not end up saving a whole lot of money if you have to replace it more often.

So, are plastic cutting boards better than wooden ones?

If you're looking for convenience and you don't plan on using your cutting board every day, a plastic board will probably suit you just fine. But if you're looking to make an investment buy, a wooden board is worth the extra money. It will last longer, and you won't have to worry about bacteria getting into your food.

Caitlin Flynn
Caitlin Flynn is a freelance lifestyle, food, and travel writer. Read more
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