Here’s why you should never wash your cutting board with dish soap

You know you live in a house of foodies when there are arguments over chopping boards. My place is far from a Michelin star restaurant, but the hell raised over such a trivial thing would make you think so.

“Chop on the board, not the table.” “No, use this one for meats,” “You’re hitting the board with the knife wrong.” Believe it or not, these were actual phrases from my childhood. Cooking, and in particular prep, was taken really seriously, with chopping board etiquette always at the top of the prep list.

Cleaning your cutting board is hardly the hardest part of cooking a meal. All you really have to do is rinse your standard size 12×18 piece of plastic or wood under hot water (usually coming out at 131 Fahrenheit), and scrub with dish soap.

We all remember the reason, right? To get rid of bacteria and other bad things lurking about. This is, of course, on top of making sure you have specific boards for specific things, and making sure you clean your knife properly. Don’t forget to use a different one when moving onto another food type. Hardly intimidating rules, but remembering to do all of them can prove tedious. Ultimately you have to do them, otherwise you’ll die of E. Coli or something, so I hear.

No, but seriously maintaining a clean kitchen, especially while you cook, is very important. We must always try to run our chopping boards under hot water and scrub them with a dish soap loaded scrubber or sponge.

Well, that was the case until very recently. Turns out that dish soap actually isn’t the best cleaning agent for your cutting board, especially if the cutting board is used for different kinds of food. Even if you’ve been religious about vigorously washing your cutting board between cutting your meat and slicing your raw fruits or vegetables, there’s probably still harmful bacteria lurking on it.

The Mirror quoted Expert Home Tips editor Stephanie C, saying that cutting boards are too cold for soap to do any real damage to the bacteria, even if you are mixing it with hot water.

According to Stephanie, liquid soaps do a great job of cleaning dirty pots, pans, and dishes, but since cutting boards are often used for raw meats, it’s best to be extra careful. Even with the extra strong ones the commercials get you to buy.

Stephanie says that to ensure your cutting board is at its cleanest, soak it in bleach after each use. This will kill most bacteria, and will keep them from transferring to any other foods you prepare on the board in the future.

Difficult to remember I know, but this is a near-foolproof way to keep everyone safe. The other option is to eat out every day for the rest of your life, but that sounds long and expensive.

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