CARE & USE
Before using your butcher block, we recommend that you apply mineral oil to each face of the board. Before shipment, your board was submerged in a mineral oil bath and buffed with a heavy coat of Board Butter (a mixture of mineral oil and beeswax), but additional oil will help to prevent any potential cracking or warping of your board. After that, you can give it a quick rinse with soapy water and dry. If your board doesn’t have feet, please place the board on one edge so air can get to both sides. Never leave your board in standing water.
OILING & BOARD BUTTER
We recommend using both mineral oil and board butter to care for your board. In a pinch, you can use just one or the other, but using both is ideal. Mineral oil penetrates to the deeper wood fibers of your board and board butter acts as a great surface protectant.
Apply mineral oil straight from the bottle, spread around with your fingers or a paper towel, allow to absorb for a few minutes, then buff off with a clean paper towel. Don’t worry about over-oiling; pour on an ounce or so at a time and keep applying as long as the oil is being absorbed fully into the wood. Be sure to oil both faces of the board. Butcher blocks will dry out over time (weeks/months), so periodic oiling is important and will dramatically increase the life of your butcher block. While there is no hard and fast rule or schedule for oiling a cutting board, there is a distinctive 'dry' look that wood gets when it hasn't been oiled sufficiently. A general rule of thumb is to oil once a week for the first month, then once a month for the next few months, then 'as needed' from there. However, if you are regularly using and washing a board, it may need to be oiled more frequently.
Board Butter should be applied following a similar schedule. Apply a quarter-sized amount and buff into both faces of the board using a paper towel or cloth. Wipe off any excess.
We recommend USP mineral oil as it is a super refined petroleum product that is inert and will not turn rancid. It can be found in most stores with a pharmacy (often near the laxatives) or on Amazon. Only use oils which are edible and tasteless on your board. Be careful of nut-based oils which may cause an allergic reaction in people who have allergies to nuts or nut products. NEVER use vegetable, coconut, or olive oil as a treatment for cutting boards! Organic oils contain fats which may turn rancid over time.
To wash your cutting board, scrape off any stuck food and scrub the board thoroughly with warm water and a small amount of dishwashing detergent. Rinse well and dry immediately. Apply a fresh coat of mineral oil if needed. (After the first washing you might notice a slight roughness to the cutting surface. This is normal. The wood fibers have absorbed moisture from the washing and have raised up slightly. Over time they will disappear.)
You can also sanitize your cutting board with a 1/1 mixture of vinegar and water. Flood the cutting surface with the solution, allow it to stand for a moment, then rinse thoroughly, and dry completely. Apply a fresh coat of mineral oil if needed.
When not in use, your cutting board needs to be kept dry. This helps prevent damage including warping and cracking and to ensure food safety. Resident bacteria will survive no more than a few minutes without moisture. Keep moisture from standing on the block for long periods of time and do not allow moisture to collect under your cutting board. Store your board on its feet or prop it on one edge when not in use. (For boards without feet, moisture trapped between the lower surface and countertop will swell the wood fibers and cause a warp.)
When using your board, use a good steel scraper or spatula. Scraping removes up to 75% of the moisture build-up. Never use a steel brush! A steel brush will roughen the cutting surface, create cracks and scratches where bacteria can accumulate, and will shorten the life of your cutting board.
For food safety, sanitize and wash all cutting boards after use with raw meats, poultry and seafood. Do NOT chop vegetables or other ready-to-eat foods on an unwashed cutting board which has been used to trim raw meat, poultry or seafood. If possible, always use a clean separate cutting board for fresh fruits, vegetables, breads and other food that will not be cooked prior to consumption.
Maple and cherry are prone to staining from beets and berries. Board Butter offers some protection, but it’s probably best to cut those foods on a cheap cutting board. If staining does occur, we recommend waiting as stains tend to dissipate over time. Lemon juice and kosher salt may also help to remove stains. Do not use hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, or bleach on your board. Using any of these substances can cause damage and discoloration to wood fibers.
To remove garlic/onion odors, simply wipe the affected area with raw potato or apple.
May your board provide many years of joy as you create beautiful food for family and friends!