How to Clean and Restore Vintage Cutting Boards

We’re sharing how to clean and restore vintage cutting boards today as we team up with some of our favorite ladies for the Lifestyle of Love Blog Hop.

A sweet shoutout to my friend Cindy of County Road 407 for putting this hop together.

If you’re coming over from Emily’s blog, Le Cultivateur, welcome, we’re happy to have you here. Didn’t you love Emily’s DIY vintage inspired breadboards?

There are specific items I always pick up when I’m out treasure hunting at charity shops, estate sales, antique malls, or outdoor events. 

Things like ironstone, brown and white transferware, french market baskets, plaid blankets, old books, portrait paintings, and silver trophies.  

How to Clean Vintage Breadboards-The Crowned Goat

Decorating with Bread Board and Cutting Boards…

While I try to keep my collections down to a small list, there always seems to be extra room for items that can be used in practical and decorative ways.   

Vintage breadboards and cutting boards are great because they can be used in so many different areas of your home. 

I keep most of my cutting boards in a vintage metal basket in the kitchen.

But I’ve also used them to add texture to the china cabinet, on the coffee station, in the laundry room, and to create vignettes.

You can use them as a backdrop for Sunday suppers and parties too. 

How to Decorate with Vintage Cutting Boards-The Crowned Goat

You can usually find vintage breadboards and cutting boards for a reasonable price.

Sometimes you can find them in really cool shapes as well.

I’ve picked most of these for just a few dollars.

Cleaning Vintage Bread Board and Cutting Boards…

Any time you bring a vintage breadboard or a cutting board home from a treasure hunt, you’ll need to make sure it’s clean. 

If you plan to use the breadboard or cutting board for food, you’ll want to make sure it’s food safe as well. 

As you can see here, the wood is super thirsty which is not uncommon.

Especially, when you find an old one at an estate sale, charity shop, or outdoor event. 

I’ve been using a simple method to sanitize, deodorize, and condition my food-grade vintage breadboards and cutting boards for several years.

As always, use caution, care, and your best judgment when using these tips based on the age, type of wood, and the general state of the boards you bring home. 

Seasoned dealers will be able to help you determine if the breadboard or cutting board you’re purchasing is food safe. 

Steps for Cleaning & Deodorizing a Breadboard or Cutting Board…

Depending on the amount of buildup on your board, use a cloth and a spray bottle to spray a half-and-half mixture of white distilled vinegar and water directly on the board.  

If you don’t have a spray bottle handy, you can put the water and vinegar mixture directly on your cloth and wipe down your board.  

Be sure to wipe away any excess. 

Allow the boards to dry completely.  

This step will help loosen any leftover food particles on your breadboard and cutting boards. It will also help to deodorize the board as well.

To Disinfect a Breadboard or Cutting Board…

Use a cloth to wipe the board with hydrogen peroxide, as this will help get rid of any remaining bacteria.

Allow the board to dry completely before moving on to the next step.

Remove Stains by…

To remove stains, sprinkle coarse salt all over the board.

If your board gets heavy use, you may want to consider allowing the salt to sit overnight so that it can continue to draw out any persistent bacteria. 

Cut a lemon in half and use each piece to rub the lemon juice directly into the board to give it a good scrub. 

Allow the salt and lemon juice mixture to sit on the boards for approximately 15 minutes.

Then wipe away with a damp cloth.

Steps for Conditioning Your Bread Board or Cutting Board…

Finally, apply mineral oil, walnut oil, almond oil, hemp oil, or organic coconut oil to condition your board using a soft cloth. 

We use Howard Butcher Block Conditioner.

Wipe the board down going with the grain of the wood including the sides and the back of the board to condition these areas as well.  

It’s not recommended you use vegetable oil or olive oil, as they will turn rancid quickly.

The amount of times you’ll need to condition your breadboards and cutting boards per year depends on your climate and how frequently the boards are used.

I clean my boards after every use.

Then condition the boards every quarter.

If you live in a dry climate, you might want to consider conditioning your boards every month.

How to Clean and Condition Vintage Breadboards and Cutting Boards-The Crowned Goat

Keep in Mind…

Be sure to dry the breadboard or cutting board with a clean towel after you’re finished cleaning and conditioning them. 

Stand the boards up to dry them completely. 

Laying them down right after cleaning them could trap moisture underneath. 

It usually takes part of the morning or an afternoon to finish all our breadboards.

The effort is always worth it though. 

Bonus, I know they’re ready to be used again!

Here’s another look at the breadboards and cutting boards before…

and after they had been cleaned and conditioned.   

Do you have any vintage breadboard or cutting board cleaning tips and tricks we should try? 

How to Clean and Restore Vintage Wood Cutting Boards-The Crowned Goat

Up Next…

Up next on the Lifestyle of Love Blog Hop is Ann of Dabbling and Decorating! You’ll love her simple ways to display rustic breadboards.

Once you’re finished there, be sure to check out what the rest of the ladies on the blog hop are sharing…

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Until next time, I’ll see you on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.

Many blessings,


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  1. I love the way you have them displayed! Mine are hidden away, but I think I will use some of your ideas and display them. Thanks for the inspiration!

    1. Great post CoCo. I love having these in the house.

      You have a great collection

  2. CoCo, I’m off to get a wire basket for my kitchen breadboards, I loved this post so informational too!

  3. wow, so many great cleaning and conditioning tips for old breadboards, CoCo. Having them in that metal basket is perfect and makes such a great display against your subway tile. I always imagine your home smells so fresh and clean! The lemons, salt, hydrogen peroxide and vinegar would make me feel like they were safe to use. Happy weekend!

  4. This is awesome! Now I know how to clean my new board and the extra ones I find along the way. 😉 I’m going to find a couple of smaller ones so I can cover up the old backsplash in our kitchen. And totally adding a pink ribbon to one of them! Sooooo cute! Glad you could join us this month. Love this post.

  5. Such great tips!!! Pinning to refer back to when I need to clean mine! Thank you so much for sharing!!!! Happy weekend!

  6. Great cleaning & conditioning tips, Coco! I have oiled mine but didn’t know how to clean old ones, since I don’t have any. I definitely need to add to my collection after todays posts:) pinned!

  7. HI CoCo – This is an informative post. Looking for old European cutting boards is one of my favorite past times at antique stores, flea markets etc. As you noted, sometimes they need a good cleaning. I love that you used all natural ingredients – especially the lemon and salt. I also love Howard’s products and use their butcher block conditioner. Pinned! Thank you for sharing this on the Home Imagined Link party.

  8. Thanks for all the great tips on how to take care of boards! I love to decorate with them and enjoyed seeing all of your pictures! So inspiring! Pinning now!

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