Wooden cutting boards have gotten more popular than their plastic counterparts in recent years. There’s always a debate about the best one, but this article isn’t about one of them. We’ll talk about how to clean and stain-free a plastic cutting board easily.
Plastic boards are easier to clean than wood or bamboo-based boards. They don’t have issues with water exposure and won’t get bent out of shape as the wooden ones do. If properly maintained, a board can easily last for ages.
In this guide, we’ll talk about some common problems with plastic boards that you don’t see that often with the other board types. Mold growth, food stain, and plastic discoloration are some of the major issues with these boards. We’ll talk about steps you can take to get these issues solved.
How to Clean and Stain Free Your Plastic Cutting Board
Let’s talk about 3 cleaning ideas that you can follow. Each of these solves one specific problem.
Cleaning in Dishwasher
Dishwashers aren’t good at removing stains from a plastic cutting board, but they’re one of the best ways to clean them. Plastic doesn’t have the problems with water like bamboo and wood have. Water exposure to plastic boards won’t be an issue.
Set the dishwasher temperature to the highest when you put the plastic board in. the closer the temperature is to the water boiling point, the better it will kill bacteria. Plastic cutting boards are made of reinforced plastic and won’t be damaged by excess heat.
Dishwasher cleaning won’t help you with those black, brown spot removals. They won’t even clean the stains. You’ll have to manually rub the board to clear them up.
Cleaning with Baking Soda
White plastic boards gen stained so easily. Plastic is stain attractant, and if you cut carrots, beets, and other colored vegetables like tomatoes, then they will stain the board. These stains are hard to remove with dish soap or dishwashing.
Hydrogen peroxide is a good solvent for any food stain. If you soak the board in hydrogen peroxide mixed water and scrub it with baking soda afterward, the stains will get softer and go away easily.
In terms of chemical strength, both hydrogen peroxide and bleach are nearly the same and will do the same tasks in identical ways. However, bleach is not a natural compound and will pose a threat to health.
Hydrogen peroxide and baking soda mixture can whiten the board as well as soften the stain marks to be scrubbed off easily. If you have a safer option like this chemical, why choose the harmful one?
Using Vinegar and Lemon
If you don’t have hydrogen peroxide at hand and need something similarly effective as that, lemon and vinegar can be a good alternative for the process.
Spray some lemon juice on the board and rub it on the stains lightly. You have to coat the board’s surface with the juice and not rub the stains off right now.
Keep the board in a well-lit place for a few hours. Once the coating has dried, soak the board in vinegar-based water for a few minutes. Once the coating is dissolved, take the board out and scrub with dish soap or baking soda.
The acid in the lemon will have dissolved the stain, and a light scrubbing will be enough to get the stain coating off the board.
Risks with Using Bleach
If you’ve been reading forum comments and watching YouTube videos on cleaning a plastic cutting board, you probably might’ve gotten convinced that bleach is a good option for cleaning and removing stains from the plastic boards.
Bleach is one of the most popular cleaning agents used in households. They can clean and disinfect everything in a matter of time. However, since you use the board to cut foods and bleach is a harmful chemical to consume, it’s better not to use it to clean your plastic cutting boards.
Food stains and black spots are some of the strongest stains, and they’re not easy to remove with regular dish soap; they won’t even go with the highest dishwasher temperature. But baking soda and hydrogen peroxide can be a good alternative here for bleach.
It’s easy for a chemical to reach inside our bodies if they’re used on a kitchen utensil, and there are other good food-grade chemical alternatives to clean a stained cutting board. You’re better off avoiding harsh chemicals to clean your plastic board.
Plastic boards aren’t as healthy as wooden boards. But if you decide to use them anyway, then the above tips will help you. These boards are long-lasting and are much more durable than the wooden ones, only if you can keep them well.
If you just know the basics on how to clean a plastic cutting board and follow the tips regularly, you can keep your board looking neat for months.