Caring for Wooden Serving and Chopping Boards

Natural oak chopping board being prepared

Natural oak chopping board being prepared

Clean the board thoroughly using some of the Clarks’s cutting board soap.

Nothing really beats the look of a great quality wooden serving or chopping board. They provide a warmth to the worktop, a natural beauty and are kind to the edges of your quality knives. When used as a serving board they bring that rustic casual chic to the table.

But how do you take care of them. At Joseph Henry we like to use the Clarks range of citric infused natural mineral oils. It’s easy, anyone can do it, and leaves your boards in great condition.

Step 1.

Gently scrub the board using some warm water and the Clarks Cutting Board soap, make sure that you clean all the surfaces, the edges and into any grooves. Dry with a towel, and then leave to finish air drying. Dont be tempted to rush by placing somewhere warm, or over a radiator. This may cause the wood to warp or cup, leaving you with a board that wobbles.

If you don’t have any of our recommended soap, a good quality food safe soap will do. Depending on what you have been chopping on the board prior to cleaning you may want to use an all purpose food safe anti-bacterial spray first. Such as Dettol Surface Cleaner

Step 2.

Once the board is dry, apply Clarks Cutting Board Mineral oil, we like to use one of the infused with citric ones. The oil should be applied reasonably generously and give a short time to soak deep into the surface of the wood, after about 20 minutes wipe off any excess and allow to dry. You should then repeat this process, the second coat will not soak in as much so can be a lighter wiped on covering.

When we are making our boards we do this a minimum of 5 times, until the oil just lightly settles onto the surface, we then wipe it off and allow to dry for about a day.

By now your board is ready to use, there is an optional 3rd step if you really want to look after your artisan hand made chopping board (the one you got from Joseph Henry Limited)

Step 3 (Optional)

When we finish our boards, we like to add the final layer of finishing wax. Its very important to use a food safe wax, don not be tempted to use a furniture polish! It’s easy to apply, simply work across the surface using a soft cloth, or clean sponge. Leave for about an hour, and then using a soft cloth firmly buff the surface smooth. This final wax is particularly useful for helping to prevent liquids seeping into the board.

Alternative products

We have also, and from time to time do also use the excellent all purpose mineral oil by Catskill. Its a clear unscented oil, which can be applied in the same way as Step 2 above.

All of these products can be used on Wooden utensils (salad forks and spoons), serving bowls. You should always use natural products, and ensure that anything you use is food safe an approved.


The links in this article are amazon affiliate links, whilst we are not associated with the products mentioned in this post, they are the ones we have used, and continue to use. If you purchase using these links it makes no difference to the price you pay, but a small amount is given to Joseph Henry Limited as a commission. By buying these products you are helping a small family UK Business. Thank you.