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Cutting Board Types and Sizes (Ultimate Kitchen Guide)

Distressed wood cutting board with small handle, small tomatoes, rock salt, peppercorns and garlic all around cutting board

If your kitchen is like ours, it is probably overflowing with different shapes and sizes of cutting boards. Are you wondering if there is a better way to organize and make meal prep easier?

Sure there is! Whether you use it to slice and dice vegetables or to cut meat, having the correct cutting board sizes is a must-have for meal prep. Standard cutting board sizes come in an extensive range of sizes, from small and thin to extra-large and thick, so it’s easy to find one that fits your needs.

In this article, we’ll discuss all you need to know, from the types available to the perfect cutting board sizes for your needs. We’ll also suggest tips on what to look for to make the best decisions for your kitchen. Whether you’re a home cook using the same chopping board for years or just starting to learn your way around the kitchen, read on to know more!

What Should I Look for in a Good Cutting Board?

Image of 9 different shapes of wooden cutting boards

Choosing the right cutting board sizes and materials for your kitchen needs is essential for food safety and hygiene. It’s important to consider the ingredients you’ll be using most often. Additionally, buying a durable and attractive one is a good idea. Once you’ve chosen the perfect one, make sure to keep it fresh by disinfecting it each time you use it!

Choosing just one for your kitchen can be a confusing task. Thankfully, by considering some essential factors, such as height, thickness, and depth of the board, it will be easier to find one that meets your needs.

Woodne cutting board with tomatoes, lemon, green peppers, mushrooms, garlic and a large chopping knife

Chopping boards also need to work in tandem with the knife. If you do not use a knife of the appropriate size, you could put yourself in danger, regardless of whether you are using a small paring knife or a large butcher’s knife. A simple test to see if you have the right board size is to place your knife diagonally on the cutting board. There should be at least an inch of space or more on each side. This allows plenty of room to cut the food and keep your fingers away from the knife’s sharp edge.

Green wooden background, 6 different sizes and shapes of wooden cutting boards

Choosing the right cutting board is essential for your kitchen if you want to protect your countertops from knife marks while keeping food clean and bacteria-free. When selecting, there are three main things to think about: what it is made of, how much surface area it has, and how thick it is. These three things will affect how fast it ages, whether it gets smells or stains, and how sharp and undamaged your knives stay.

Types of Cutting Boards

Kitchen with white counter tops, white tile backsplash with gray grout, gray cabinets with bronze handles, wooden cutting boards on counter

From silicone to exotic wood, there is an option to meet your needs and style! Choose plastics to be practical, or opt for a printed ceramic to perfectly match your decor.

Woodne cutting board with handles laying on a green and white checkered folded towel

Wooden Cutting Boards

Wooden cutting board with handle, dark with lighter outline, rock salt and peppercorns in small wooden bowls

Wood is the most natural material, but it can be expensive and difficult to maintain. A Wood cutting board, especially high-quality end grain, makes lovely serving pieces and is usually made from the face grain, the most beautiful part of the wood. The exposed wood grain can look like a work of art, making them a stunning display when left on the kitchen counter.

The problem with wood cutting boards is that they will change based on their environment. If they get too wet, they warp and split. They also easily get stained by foods with strong color pigment, like beets, and smells like onions and garlic, stick around longer.

A wooden cutting board tends to cost more as well. But wood is an excellent choice if you want a beautiful board that you can show off in your kitchen and don’t mind taking care of a little. Most are usually between 1 1/4″ to 2″ thick, and the thickness will vary depending on the material and style.

If you only want one functional and beautiful chopping board that will add a touch of class to your kitchen, go for a wooden board. They’re beautiful to look at, won’t dull knives, and are perfect for cutting delicate foods.

End Grain Cutting Board

Wooden cutting board, black and wood colored checkered pattern

If you are looking for a wooden cutting board that will last and performs better than the others, end grain boards are the best choice. End grain cutting boards resist splintering and warping. End grain boards also have a natural finish that looks great and is easier to clean.

End grain cutting boards in which the wood grain runs from the top of the board vertically down to the bottom look excellent and make a softer surface for cutting. This softer wood surface helps keep knives sharper for longer. 

Edge Grain Cutting Boards

Woman in green shirt using a bread knife cutting a small loaf of bred on a wooden cutting board

Edge grain cutting boards are a type of wood that has the grain running perpendicular to the surface of the board. The edge grain gives it an advantage in terms of durability. Edge grain cutting boards are an excellent practical choice for cutting various foods. If you take care of your wooden boards, they can last for years, if not decades.

Plastic Cutting Boards

White plastic cutting board with green rubber edging

Plastic cutting boards are perfect for busy kitchens as they are incredibly durable and easy to clean. They are the most popular cutting boards sold because they help prevent food-borne illnesses by preventing cross-contamination and ensuring the kitchen is free of harmful bacteria. The thickness is usually less than wood at about a standard 1/2″ thick size.

Red, green, blue, and yellow Plastic cutting boards

Available in different sizes and shapes, plastic boards can suit any kitchen layout or décor requirements. Unlike wood, which can be heavy to carry around, these are lightweight. It’s important to note that knife marks will appear on the surface. For this reason, we do not recommend serrated knives. 

High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) Cutting Board

Image of industrial kitchen with metal counters, drying rack with plastic cutting boards

High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) is a somewhat expensive plastic. Still, it has many advantages compared to other types of cheaper plastic boards. This plastic board is resistant to most liquids and alcohols, durable, easy to clean, and doesn’t dull knives. It is one of the most popular types because of its strength and durability.

Bamboo Cutting Board

Wooden cutting board with knife, onion, potato, garlic and celery

Bamboo is a highly durable option. If you suffer from sensitivities or allergies, exotic woods like bamboo are perfect for you. This thicker board is free from those allergens, and its natural anti-microbial agent helps keep your kitchen clean. The thickness of a bamboo board is slip-resistant, but the size means they can get heavy to carry across the kitchen.

Bamboo chopping boards are incredibly durable, water resistant, and eco-friendly; they decompose slowly, so there’s little need for landfills. They require monthly maintenance and must be rubbed down with mineral oil.

Rubber Cutting Board

Red and orange rubber chopping board, white measuring cup

Rubber chopping boards are a category that also includes “hi-soft” styles made from polyvinyl acetate. These are significantly softer than wooden varieties but are still extremely durable. Because they are softer, they are easier on both your arms and your knife blade. They are the cutting surface of choice in restaurants and commercial settings.

Stone Cutting Board

Slate gray stone cutting board

Those made of stone are comparable to glass in many ways. They are also resistant to stains, odors, and scratches. They can withstand hot temperatures, and you can pop them in the dishwasher. Be careful because the stone can be slippery, and a knife can easily fly out of your hand! 

Glass Cutting Board

Block of cheese and knife on glass cutting board

This material can handle high temperatures, is easy to clean, and can be put in the dishwasher. Tempered glass doesn’t get scratched by kitchen knives and lasts a very long time, and when it comes to cleanliness, you can’t find anything better! 

Ceramic Cutting Board

2 ceramic cutting board, one yellow and white and one teal and white

Similar to glass, they are easy to clean and dishwasher safe. However, we cannot stress enough how strongly we advise you to avoid using glass or ceramic chopping boards. They are not only prone to breaking and shattering, but they are also highly damaging to the blade of your knife.

Marble Cutting Board

Wooden table with white marble cutting board surrounded by red peppers, cheese, garlic and seasonings

Marble is comparable to glass in terms of its benefits; nevertheless, experts in the field of cutlery criticize it for its tendency to dull kitchen knives. Marble is more suited to be a serving tray, and attractive options are available at all price points.

Silicone Cutting Boards

Man using a plastic knife to cut dough on a silicone cutting board, large rolling pin

One of the more recent developments in kitchen technology is the production of food-grade silicone. These are also known as foldable chopping boards. They are robust and can tolerate temperatures ranging from -40 degrees to 260 degrees Celsius.

Standard Cutting Board Sizes

5  Wooden cutting boards in different shapes and sizes lined up on table propped up on wall

The most common size cutting board is 12″ x 18″. We recommend this standard size if you only have room for one cutting board in your kitchen. It will give you plenty of room to chop and cut multiple foods, but it will also be easy to store.

Sizes range from small to large, and each serves a purpose, although many are multi-taskers. You should be able to hold and cut food on your board without having to move piles of already cut food out of the way.

Often, they are sold together in a pack and will have three different sizes, including one of the most common sizes. We like this choice which includes a medium cutting board size along with a small cutting board and a large cutting board.

Small Cutting Boards

Rustic dark wooden cutting board with lots of little tomatoes

Kitchen space is at a premium these days, which is why it’s so important to choose the right cutting board size for your kitchen. Smaller cutting boards might be your size if you have a small space!

White plastic cutting board, black and silver knife cutting tomatoes

A small board is perfect for those with limited kitchen space, and it’s also a great choice if you need a chopping board for mincing herbs and chopping onions.

A small cutting board is perfect for slicing fruits for cocktails or even a tiny snack, whether made from plastic, wood, or other cutting board materials.

Small cutting boards come in the following sizes:

  • 4″x6″
  • 5″ x 7″

Medium Cutting Boards

Wooden cutting board, black and silver knife, carrots chopped up

A medium cutting board is the best of both. Too large can be a hassle to clean, and a smaller board can be dangerous and put your fingers too close to the knife’s edge.

A medium size board will work best if you cut multiple items at once, like vegetables for a salad or veggie tray. Because they are the most versatile, medium board sizes are the most popular of the standard cutting board sizes. Medium size tends to come in the following common sizes:

  • 6″ x 9″
  • 8″ x 10″
  • 8″ x 12″
  • 9″ x 9″
  • 10″ x 15″
  • 12 x 18″

Large Cutting Boards

Man using a large knife to slice tri tip on a wooden cutting board, rock salt sprinkled all around, red peppers and gloves of garlic

Large cutting boards are most helpful for cutting multiple items. There is room to push one food aside while you get to work on the next one without having to transfer anything to an alternate plate.

The larger size is bulkier, but it is worth it if you have multiple foods or many vegetables to cut at once. The larger boards can be heavy to carry across the kitchen. It is something to keep in mind if you consider a larger size for everyday use. A larger cutting board will usually have a thickness between 1 1/4″ to 2″ thick. The size and thickness of large cutting boards can make them bulky and heavy to carry back and forth across the kitchen.

Common large sizes are:

  • 7″ x 23″
  • 15″ x 20″
  • 18″ x 18″
  • 18″ x 24″

Extra Large Cutting Boards

Wooden cutting board with cheese, crackers, olives and jelly spread

An extra large size often takes up a significant portion of the countertop. It is usually left in place because they are too heavy and big to store away when not in use. Often, these are found in commercial kitchens or as a centerpiece in a home kitchen. Extra large are in the range of the following standard cutting board sizes and include anything bigger:

  • 18″ x 30″
  • 20″ x 30″

Charcuterie Board Sizes

5 Different shaped wooden cutting boardsm ceramic cup of wooden spoons

Charcuterie styles are usually wooden cutting boards used as a serving tray. Many factors determine charcuterie board sizes, like what material you prefer and what size. Size is generally determined by how many people you want to entertain.

Wooden charcuterie board with cheese, crackers, olives, meat slices and jelly

While charcuterie is traditionally served on a cutting board, it isn’t the same chopping board you use to chop the ingredients. Because you will arrange and display the food for a beautiful presentation, it is used only as a server. Usually, it is considered to be in the category of serving trays because often, they are not functional as chopping boards. They can be used to cut on; however, knife marks and wear may mean it will no longer look beautiful as a serving piece.

Other Types of Cutting Boards

fish shaped wooden cutting board

There are a lot of cutting boards with extra features, but sometimes they have drawbacks. Grooves around the edge are ideal for juicy meat or tomatoes. Rubber feet make it more stable and improve airflow, but they also make it impossible to flip it over and use both sides. Folds in half or have other tricks will eventually break, tear, or fall apart.

Round Boards

Round shaped wooden cutting board

Round boards are the best option for kitchens with limited counter space, as they take up less space. Compared to rectangular boards, the surface area is much smaller. Getting a larger board than you think you need would be best. This will give you enough space to work with while chopping.

Round boards are great for serving and putting things on, especially pizza! They’re also the easiest to clean since they don’t have any curves or angles that can get stuck in food.

Rectangular Boards

Rectangular Shaped Wooden Cutting Board

The rectangular shape is the standard of most common cutting board sizes. It is easy to use, and you can store it with other rectangular items like baking sheets. This shape is versatile, and you can use it for various tasks, such as chopping vegetables or fruits.

Specialty Shapes and Sizes

Heart shaped wooden cutting board, a wooden spoon and fork tied together with a red and white checkered ribbon, red and white checkered towel

Unique shapes are fun to collect as souvenirs or give as unique gifts. It is common to find shapes of a home state or special hobby. Usually, this type is considered to be more decorative. It is used as part of the kitchen decor or for serving. Whatever shape or size you choose, happy chopping!