Tip of the Day
Maintaining Your Cutting Board
It's not just your hands that need washing during food preparation. To prevent food poisoning, it's also important to properly wash your cutting boards.
When juices from raw meats or germs from unclean objects accidentally touch cooked or ready-to-eat foods (such as fruits, salads or bread), cross-contamination occurs. If not cleaned correctly, cutting boards can harbor harmful bacteria.
It doesn’t matter if you use acrylic, glass, marble, plastic or solid wood cutting boards, make sure to use two: one strictly to cut raw meat, poultry and seafood; the other for ready-to-eat foods, like breads and vegetables.
Follow these guidelines for cleaning cutting boards:
- After each use, clean cutting boards thoroughly in hot, soapy water.
- After cutting raw meats on your board, wash in the dishwasher. If you prefer cleaning by hand, scrub thoroughly with hot, soapy water, rinse thoroughly and then sanitize with a bleach solution (1 tablespoon bleach in 1 gallon of water). If using a dual purpose product, such as a commercial cleaner/sanitizer combination, follow manufacturer's instructions for application.
- Discard cutting boards that have cracks, crevices and knife scars.
For more information on preventing food poisoning, consult a registered dietitian in your area and visit www.homefoodsafety.org.
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Reviewed December 2012