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34 Answers

I have some wooden cutting boards, they are starting to be a bit smelly. I use dish washing liquid but they are still smelly. They are quite new and I don’t want to replace them yet. do you have any ideas to get the smell out of cutting boards?


Posted by ralu, 30th April 2015


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  • if your board smells just remember it is due to bacteria on the board and you should not use at all until clean because you could make yourself sick. make sure you board does not have any deep cracks or grooves for bacteria to grow, if it does its time to get a new one. but things like lemonjuice,vinegar,bleach (diluted) are good at killing the nasties on chopping boards. another tip is to dry your board in the sun as this helps to kill off the bacteria aswell. and if you do decide to use bleach make sure to dilute and use one that has no added scents (like lemon bleach does)


  • Sprinkle the surface with salt and leave for at least half an hour then wash off.


  • Salt, vinegar, or lemons will usually clean cutting boards well.


  • I clean mine with hot water and then rub fresh cut lemons over it. Let it sit for a while with the juice/pulp on it and then rinse again in really hot water.


  • I agree with some of the other comments. Trying lemon juice is a good idea but you would need to rinse it well afterwards. I’m not sure whether the acid from the lemon would damage the timeber or not. I definitely would not use bleach as even diluted I think the wood would absorb too much. The board needs to dry fairly quickly if possible and to be left in an light airy place.


  • I had heard the lemon juice trick before but wasn’t sure if it actually worked. I’ll give it a try!


  • use watered down bleach solution will get the smell out of them or vinegar and baking soda


  • Rub them over with lemon! Cut the lemon in half and then scrub away. I do this with our wooden boards and it works a treat!


  • I use a cut lemon rub it all over the board. The lemon not only cleans the smell but freshens it as well then place it in sun for half hour then wipe off. Very environmentally friendly no chemicals or odours except nice lemon smell.


  • Lemon juice work well for me.


  • I make a paste of baking soda and water. Rub it all over with my fingers into the wood. Let it sit for 10-15 minutes and then rinse. I do this regularly with my walnut board to remove the onion and garlic odours.


  • some interesting ideas thanks


  • I rub my chopping boards with steel wool & hot water ,then use half a lemon & rince ,also rub down with clean cooking oil .


  • I used to use white vinegar and boiling water. I found out the other night listening to a quiz show that vinegar is made from fermented ethanol! Not all that keen on vinegar now! lol!! But I will use lemon or lime juice which is a safer option.


  • Have you tried lemon juice??? I cut one in half and rub it over my cutting boards. It usually gets rid of the smells.


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