I just got myself a new wooden board. I have been told to put some olive oil onto it and let it sink in for a few hours first. But now I'm reading from sources that I should be instead using mineral oil. Which is true? Is it ok to use Olive oil?


2 Answers 2


Use food grade mineral oil

While one could use any edible oil (assuming frequent washing as many go rancid) to condition a wooden cutting board, food grade mineral oil or "butcher block conditioner," which is food grade mineral oil with waxes, is preferred because it will not affect the flavor of foods cut on the board.

  • 2
    So considering that 90% of the food I will be cutting on it will be cooked in a pot with the same olive oil... I probably don't care, right?
    – DottyPhone
    Oct 20, 2018 at 15:49
  • 1
    If you're frequently washing and re-oiling it probably doesn't matter other than the flavor it contributes to the food. If you use the same oil you cook with than so long as the oil isn't allowed to go rancid or the wood go dry it doesn't matter much. I prefer a mineral oil and beeswax "butcher block conditioner" which lasts a long time and doesn't go rancid.
    – Tuorg
    Oct 20, 2018 at 15:52
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    I'd suggest editing the discussion of rancidity into your answer; it's just as important as affecting flavor.
    – Cascabel
    Oct 20, 2018 at 16:04

I've been seasoning my boards with olive oil for about 8 years now (same board!) and never had any problems with olive oil making the wood bad, there be a taste or smell.

Now, I do a mild oven dry after saturating it in oil, and then wipe off the excess. I do this once or twice a year.

For the record, we have the board covering one half of our sink and it gets a lot of use, lots of foods, lots of wet, lots of washes in the sink, lots of everything. We put it upright at night to drive if it was washed.

It is a laminated bamboo board.

Olive oil seems to work fine!

PS - I have also done this with one of my previous oak boards.

  • 1
    Um ... laminated bamboo boards don't need to be oiled. They're already 100% sealed against moisture using resin.
    – FuzzyChef
    Oct 1, 2020 at 5:30
  • Don't know about that. From what I can see about moisture retention (my board) and the other info online, they do need to be oiled like any other wood cutting board - especially when they get wet often. As per this and so many other advices online: cooking.stackexchange.com/a/34325/63375 . Now if they don't that's news to me. Looking at the wood on mine, I would still oil it. Oct 2, 2020 at 9:28
  • Huh. Bamboo boards are made from laminated layers of split bamboo, so I don't get why they would want to be oiled. But you're right, most manufacturers do recommend oiling them.
    – FuzzyChef
    Oct 4, 2020 at 4:38
  • They still rot - especially when used near a sink where they don't dry out completely between uses. The oil also prevents proteins from sticking - just like they put oil on everything at the meat shop (they even oil glazed ceramic walls in the meat shop!). Oct 4, 2020 at 19:55

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