Let me preface this post: this method may not completely disinfect your cutting board from all microorganisms. With that being said, I did my research. (For those of you who don’t know, I’m in graduate school for a health profession so I have access to millions of scientific articles). I found that lemon will kill many common bacteria and fungi that we find in everyday life. Lemons have a low pH due to the citric acid which many organisms can’t survive in. Also, extremely hot water helps. Salmonella and Campylobacter (common causes of food poisoning) cannot usually survive boiling water. If you have time, boil up a huge pot of water before cleaning and dump it on your cutting board at the end. Cleaning a wood cutting board is difficult. You want to clean out all the grooves but you don’t want a bunch of chemicals getting soaked up by the wood. Chemicals found in everyday house cleaners can irritate skin, eyes, nose, etc. and can also lead to allergies. With that being said, bleach will kill almost anything. So you must weigh the benefits with the risks and decide how afraid you are of germs. Either way, the lemon and salt method is a great way to clean from day to day and helps remove pesky stains from your cutting board. Add boiling water to this and you’ll disinfect against many disease causing organisms.
Dirty Cutting Board:
Cut the lemon in half and coat in salt:
Squeeze the lemon while you scrub to get all those good juices out:
Our sink shoots out super hot, steaming water so we just rinsed under the faucet: