Cheap Vs. Expensive Wooden Cutting Boards

Picket slicing boards are ubiquitous in lots of kitchens: they’re the workhorse of meal prep, the Ginger Rogers to your knife’s Fred Astaire. However do you really want an expensive one? After we tested wooden cutting boards, our high three picks all got here from smaller producers who make their slicing boards from high-end woods, and most of them have been at the least $120.

With so many types and supplies on the market, we took a while to interrupt down simply why our high slicing board picks are usually dearer—and why they’re price it. 

They’re Made From Higher Supplies

Board Smith

12 x 18 x 1.75 End Grain Maple Butcher Block

Brooklyn Butcher Block

Our high three picks come from The Boardsmith and Brooklyn Butcher Blocks, who solely work with maple, walnut, and cherry wooden. All three of those woods are well-regarded for his or her sturdiness whereas nonetheless having sufficient give to be light in your knives (although some folks assume cherry is slightly too tender). These aren’t the most costly woods on the market, however the boards must be straight and with out blemishes with a purpose to mix them right into a high-end slicing board, making the uncooked supplies for well-made boards costlier than their bulk lumber counterparts. 

Cheaper slicing boards are normally made out of bamboo, acacia, teak, and even compressed paper. All of those supplies are hailed for his or her pure water resistance, however each bamboo and teak have excessive silica content material which could be actually powerful on knives, whereas compressed paper boards are the toughest materials of all of them. Acacia’s hardness can range relying on the place it was grown, and whereas we favor maple, our budget pick is made out of acacia. 

They’re Usually Made Finish-Grain Fashion, Which Is Simpler on Knives

Most cheap slicing boards are made out of edge-grain wooden, that means the boards are aligned lengthwise earlier than assembling. It’s a less expensive building technique as a result of there are fewer items to assemble. 

Finish-grain boards, which make up three of our 4 high picks, expose the ends of the boards on the slicing floor in a brick-like sample. As a result of there are such a lot of extra wooden items concerned within the building course of, it takes much more time and precision to assemble. This type of board can also be gentler in your knives as a result of the wooden fibers are oriented vertically, permitting the knife’s edge to go between them. You may learn extra concerning the two forms of board building in our review

Excessive-Finish Slicing Boards Final Longer

Severe Eats / Vicky Wasik

Effectively-made slicing boards last more than cheaper ones, and our senior culinary editor Daniel Gritzer has been utilizing his Maple End Grain Boardsmith board for greater than six years. As a result of end-grain boards have a pure self-healing high quality, he stories that there isn’t a seen deterioration within the floor high quality, though the board has gone by means of some intervals of neglect.

So whereas our favourite slicing boards may be dear, they’re much less more likely to cut up, in contrast to the cheaper ones Daniel ordered for the Severe Eats kitchen that failed solely after just a few months. 

Thicker Boards Keep True 

The thicker the slicing board, the more true it’ll keep—thinner slicing boards are at the next threat of warping as a result of there’s simply much less materials to carry them straight. And the extra materials you utilize—you guessed it—the dearer the slicing board turns into. Our picks from The Boardsmith and Brooklyn Butcher Blocks are each two inches thick, whereas our Ironwood Gorumet price range choose is simply one-and-a-quarter inches thick. It might be lower than half the price, but it surely’s nearly half as thick and might be extra more likely to warp if it absorbs an excessive amount of water. 


Severe Eats / Vicky Wasik

Each The Boardsmith and Brooklyn Butcher Blocks provide numerous ranges of customization, like including a juice groove, toes, or handles. It’s an effective way so as to add a private contact to a much bigger funding: when you’re going to have one in all these slicing boards for a very long time, you would possibly as effectively make it your personal. Our updates editor Jacob Dean custom-made his end-grain board to be at the least two inches thick and custom-sized to his countertop, with beveled edges that make it simpler to select up. 

Since cheaper boards are made in bulk, some of these customizations aren’t doable. Our budget pick comes with toes connected, which we’re torn on: whereas rubber toes can stop skidding, additionally they render one aspect of the board unusable as a slicing floor. With a {custom} order, you can also make the selection on whether or not you need toes or not, which might double the workspace your slicing board provides. 

So, Are Costly Wooden Slicing Boards Value It?  

We expect so! Our high picks from The Boardsmith and Brooklyn Butcher Blocks are made out of high-end wooden, and so they’re gentler in your knives and last more than many lower-cost choices. For those who do have a tough time with their value level, nonetheless, we additionally advocate this acacia choice from Ironwood Gourmet. It received’t be as much as the standard of our high picks, but it surely’ll nonetheless carry out fairly effectively. 


What’s the finest hardwood for a slicing board?

The most effective hardwoods for slicing boards are maple, walnut, and cherry. All three have barely completely different properties, however they’re all sturdy sufficient to forestall kitchen knives from making deep cuts whereas nonetheless being tender sufficient to be light on a knife’s edge. 

Can I reduce uncooked meat on a picket slicing board?

When you can reduce uncooked meat on a picket slicing board, it’s more durable to sanitize and clear than a plastic slicing board. On the identical time, older plastic slicing boards can have deep grooves that gather micro organism and are more durable to wash, so make sure you throw out any slicing board when you begin to see deeper knife marks displaying up on its floor.

Must you seal a hardwood slicing board?

Sure—hardwood remains to be porous, and an unseasoned slicing board dangers swelling, cracking, and warping if it isn’t correctly sealed with mineral oil. We now have a information to indicate you carry out regular seasoning, and we advocate reasoning your slicing board everytime you discover drops of water are now not beading on the floor. 

Why do folks favor picket slicing boards?

{Most professional} kitchens use an array of plastic slicing boards as a result of they’re simpler to wash (and so they’re cheaper, which issues once you want one board for every prep station), however at dwelling, many cooks {and professional} cooks favor wooden. Picket slicing boards are versatile and so they’re simpler on knives. If somebody has a set of high-end knives that they’d like to guard, a picket slicing board is the only option. In addition they are available quite a lot of dimensions and shapes, and high-end picket slicing boards could be custom-made to the person’s liking.

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