Butcher Block Care

Made to Last a Lifetime

Whether you’re waiting for your brand new Scotsman Co. Butcher Block to arrive at your door, or you’ve had a trusty old block forever, this guide will help you properly care for your wooden kitchen items, ensuring they last a lifetime.

Trust us, it’s not as difficult as it sounds.

Hand Wash Your Board

Only hand wash your board in the sink with soap and water with a clean dishcloth or gentle scrubber. We recommend immediately toweling off the excess moisture on your board with a hand towel and to prop it up to air dry.

Additionally, wipe up any spills that land on your board, keeping it as clean and dry as possible.

Most importantly, do not put your butcher block in the dishwasher or leave your board soaking in the sink. Doing so will ruin your butcher block or other Scotsman Co. wooden products.

Oil Your Board

It is perfectly natural for wood to dry out over time. If your board starts to look a little white or dried out, then it's time to oil. While a wood butter containing beeswax provides optimal protection, regular old mineral oil works just fine too. Use a clean paper towel to wipe on a generous coating, let it sit overnight, then buff off the excess the next day with a dry towel.

Oiling your board keeps the wood moisturized, preventing cracking or splitting while keeping odors and liquids from your foods from seeping into the wood. Our suggestion is to oil your board about once a month, but this can vary depending on how often the board is used.

We only recommend using Food-grade wood butter and mineral oil on butcher blocks. Do not use olive, vegetable, avocado, or any other cooking oil on your board. These oils do expire and eventually go rancid, so if you use them on your board it will eventually rot or stink. Shop our Scotsman Wood Care products to protect and preserve your wood products.

this might surprise you

Wooden Butcher Blocks Are Safer Than Plastic Cutting Boards

It's true!

It’s true! Wooden butcher blocks, like we produce at Scotsman Co. are safer and more sanitary than plastic cutting boards. When you cut and slice food on plastic cutting boards, micro-scratches appear over time. These micro-scratches are nearly impossible to thoroughly clean and sanitize.

Bits of food and liquid from food become trapped in the grooves and not only are your knives getting duller, but harbored bacteria can spread into your food. Where plastic cutting boards can harbor bacteria, wood actually does the opposite.

Because wood is a living, natural product, non- porous hardwoods like we use in our products actually absorb and kill bacteria as quickly as 3 to 10 minutes. Additionally, the fibers in the wood can work together to seal up micro-scratches, creating a safer place to cut and prep food, especially raw meat.

*Whenever you do cut raw meat on a butcher block, hand wash with warm soapy water as soon as possible. Greasy contaminants still pose a risk to the boards if left sitting for hours and hours.

Read more about butcher block food safety here.

Research cross-reference can be found here.

Pro-Tips For Butcher Block Use

Slice With Care

Butcher Blocks can handle a lot of wear and tear. They are the workhorse of the kitchen after all. As tough as they are, we recommend  not using excessive force to slice, cut, and chop to minimize deep scratches.

If you cut too deep and your board is left with a mark, you can use fine-grit sandpaper to buff out the scratches. Sand in the direction of the grain, wipe off the dust and apply a protective oil before using the board again.

However, scratches on your board will appear over time especially if you use the board daily. It’s part of the charm of a well used and well loved heirloom piece.

Your Block is Not

Not a trivet

We recommend not setting any pot, pan, or baking dish on your butcher block. Doing so could result in black stains setting in your board.

Stick to regular oven mits and trivets when you need to take something out of the oven or off of the stove.

Butcher Blocks are meant to be used and can easily become part of your everyday kitchen routine. Follow the advice above for optimal care of these everyday heirlooms.

Frequently Asked Questions

Before we ship out our butcher blocks, we finish them with a food-safe mineral oil. It might feel slightly greasy to the touch, but it’s perfectly safe and supposed to be like that. You can gently wipe the board off before using if you want to.

Certain foods (like beets) will stain. You can sand lightly with a fine grit sandpaper and to soak with lemon juice to lighten the stain.

NOPE. These oils do expire and eventually go rancid, so if you use them on your board it will eventually rot or stink.Food grade wood butter and mineral oil are the only products we recommend.

Yes, as long as your board is properly maintained with a mineral oil, cutting raw meat is completely safe. In fact, using a butcher block is actually more sanitary than plastic cutting boards. Be sure to immediately wash with hot, soapy water and let dry completely before the next use to avoid cross contamination.

If you cut too deep and your board is left with a mark, you can use a fine grit sandpaper to buff out the scratches. Sand in the direction of the grain, wipe off the dust, and apply a mineral oil before using the board again.

Keeping your board properly sealed and washing immediately after use will prevent this problem. However, you can use a lemon cut in half and dip it in salt to scrub the board to eliminate any odors.

You can’t use just any wood to make a quality butcher block. We use locally sourced American hardwoods like cherry, maple, walnut, and white oak.

We proudly make the butcher blocks in Laurel, MS with a small team of expert craftsman. We’re proud of the products we make and believe that manufacturing can save small towns.

“We are committed to developing only the best Mississippi and American-made Scotsman Co. things for nostalgic folks like us who believe in using tools and objects that can hold up through the years and be passed down someday.”

Ben Napier