New Utensils

How to clean Wooden Utensils? A step-by-step Guide

How to Clean Wooden Utensils
Wooden Utensils

Cleaning wooden utensils is a more challenging job than many think. You only need to know how to clean wooden utensils carefully and adequately. Otherwise, you’ll have damaged, unpolished wooden utensils for your kitchen.


Wooden utensils for the kitchen are no less crucial since they contain natural anti-bacterial properties, protecting from bacteria, germs, and mold. There are a variety of home ingredients and remedies that can help you to do it.


All of them are found near the kitchen, and you do not need to buy them by spending high cash. 


From stirring spoons to dough bowls, chopping boards can damage for lack of proper care. So, without any further ado, let’s learn about the cleaning process of your kitchen wooden utensils.

What You'll Need to Clean a Wooden spoon

To clean a wooden spoon, you’ll typically need the following items:


  • Warm Water: Use warm, not hot, water for cleaning wooden spoons.


  • Mild Dish Soap: A gentle dish soap helps remove grease and food residues.


  • Soft Brush or Cloth: A soft-bristle brush or cloth is ideal for scrubbing the spoon’s surface.


  • Baking Soda (Optional): Baking soda can be used for stubborn stains or odors.


  • Vinegar (Optional): White vinegar can help disinfect and remove odors.


  • Mineral Oil (For Maintenance): Mineral oil can be applied to maintain the spoon’s condition and prevent drying out.


  • Lint-Free Towel: Use a lint-free towel for drying the spoon after cleaning.


These items are typically sufficient to clean and maintain your wooden spoons effectively.

How to Clean Wooden Utensils: Step-By-Step Guidance?

cleaning process wooden Utensils

Keep your used wooden kitchen utensils out of the water. It may discolor the wood’s natural finish, expanding it and accelerating deterioration. They may be damaged by excessive heat, detergent, and forceful water or sometimes develop cracks. 

Therefore, clean them manually and stick to the guidelines below.

Method 1: After-Use Process To Clean Wooden Utensils

Do these steps carefully when cooking with the kitchen’s wooden materials. Rinse them with water immediately.

Step 1: Wash Them Off

Rinse all the necessary tools with water used for cooking, such as wooden spoons, plates, cups, etc. Make sure no food particles are sticking up on them.

Step 2: Use Mild Cleaning Agents Or Hand

Use any mild cleanser like dishwashing soap, baking soda, or lemon juice for scrubbing. Those mild cleansers also help to omit stubborn stains from wooden spoons. Scrub with your finger. Remember that you should use something other than detergent soap or dishwasher soap while cleaning wooden spoons. They damage and destroy the wooden particles.

Step 3: Rinse & Dry With a Soft Cloth

Use your hand to clean the stubborn and clip off any suds. When you notice it is all clean and fresh, take a soft dry cloth to dry. Dry it properly before using it for cooking.

Repeat this method daily to keep the wooden utensils evergreen and newer.

Method 2: Disinfecting Process & Removing Odors (Home Remedies)

If you’re thinking of cleaning your old wooden utensils that are damaged, this could be the best option. In this method, I will show you how to disinfect and clean old spoons with mineral oil. Let me show them in depth.

Step 1: Wear Gloves Before Cleaning

To avoid potential skin irritation, wear a pair of gloves. As I insisted to you before that, I’m going to use here only mild cleanser available at home, so you can skip wearing gloves. But please wear it all the time.

Your favorite stainless steel utensils may become filthy if misused over time. Use lemon juice to effectively remove grease and debris from the surface of your stainless steel cookware. 


Lemon juice helps prevent mold and rashes and is excellent at eliminating fat.

Step 2: Make A Lemon Juice Mixture For Stubborn Stains

To make a mild cleanser, maintain the below list.


  1. Hot water
  2. Olive oil
  3. Lemon peel oil
  4. Baking soda (1 tsp)
  5. Lemon juice 


Mix them all and make a strong paste. Use your finger or a scrubber to clean wooden oil utensils. Follow the direction to remove its grains.


    • Rinse the entire utensils with water. When it is finished, repeat it if necessary.


    • Air dry those tools and add coarse salt to the mixture for more abrasion. 
    • Clean wooden utensils with the baking soda mixture. Rub it until it looks so fresh and clean.


Put some of them onto the wooden cutting boards and lay down spoons. Clean it and then rinse it with water.

Step 3: Disinfect By Hydrogen Peroxide

You can also use regular hydrogen peroxide to disinfect wooden utensils. To do this step, 


    • Place any of your wooden kitchenware on the cutting boards, basin, or pan.
    •  Pour some hydrogen peroxide into a mixing bowl and mix it with normal water.
    • Now, take a soft sponge or your hands to rinse those utensils. Put a minimum amount of these and scrub it.
    •  After that, let the amounts set for a while to soak in and kill germs. 
    • Rinse the clean wooden spoons with that mixture and rub it gently.
    •  Repeat this process until you get the expected results.

Step 4: Use Water & Vinegar to disinfect

Another great option you can use is a mixture of water and vinegar. Just fill a spray bottle with hot soapy water and mix some vinegar. Lay down the utensils onto any paper towel or cooking towel and spray them with that mixture.


Let them dry. And those are prepared to use for the next beat.


Note: Take less warm water to make this mixture. Otherwise, it may damage the wooden surfaces permanently.

Step 5: Only Hot Water & Vinegar

Add some hot water and vinegar in a basin or bowl, whatever you like most. Place the spoon to create a diluted solution. Place all types of wooden cookware into that solution.


Let it soak for up to half an hour. Rinse thoroughly with warm water to remove food stains, odors, etc., and then towel dry it.


Some users often like to add food-based oils to make them more adorable. But I must advise you to put any vegetation oil or lemon juice to cut off the harsh vinegar smells.

Step 6: Soak It In A Mild Bleach Solution

Place a small amount of bleach in a soaking tub. Some prefer to use the sink; some feel comfortable doing it in a large bowl or dishpan. No matter what you take, fill the bowl with some hot water. Maintain the ratio of one part bleach and 20 parts of water.  


    • Afterward, put all the cookware and your utensils on it. Unlike step 5, let them soak for a few more minutes to remove residual bleach. 
    • Now, towel dries the spoon and let it sit for some time.
    • Bleaching agents have some natural cleaning properties, which are compatible with removing mold or germs. 


Once you’re done, take a clean cloth to dry those elements and ensure you have removed excess water from them.

5 Tips to Maintain Wooden Utensils to Keep It Sparkling

Check out the five tips below to keep wooden utensils sparkling forever. Wood material lasts longer than other utensils if anyone takes good care of it. If you’re interested in learning more about organize your kitchen utensil drawers to better care for your wooden utensils, check out this helpful guide from New Utensils.

Tips 1: Inspect Any Signs of Your Wood Periodically

Do notice or check the wooden utensils to inspect if there are any warping, cracking, or splitting signs. Check out for any fuzziness that may develop from the grains swelling. Also, don’t avoid inspecting if the utensils lose their natural finish and colors.

Try to create a routine for your wooden utensils to expand their lifespan. Treat the stains, and scrub these stubborn using steel wool. Sand the rough surfaces if it seems to you uneven, as well as condition the wood periodically.

Tips 2: Smooth Surfaces to Remove Fuzziness

Sometimes the stubborn odors make the upper surface of those utensils too rough. It may often occur for cooking with them in high heat. Using dishwasher soap is also responsible for this kind of difficulty. 


To avoid such problems, do consider using any sandpaper such as 100,200, and 400 grit sandpaper. 

    • Place the sandpaper into the wood and sand it using your hand
    • Wet the spoon between the sanding period if you work with coarser grit to finer grit sandpaper. 
    • Wet both sandpaper and wooden utensils to make it more smooth and even.
    • Sand it again, and finally rinse with warm water.
    • Towel-dry it or remove the excess using a clean cloth.

Tips 3: Oil Your Wooden Material To Retain Vibrancy

Oil your wooden material to make it more stunning and vibrating. To do this job, put mineral or food-safe oil on it. Those oils are commonly used by restaurants that increase the wood’s lifespan. You can also use coconut oil and linoleum oil as an alternative. Coconut oil could be better for competing with high temperatures. Meanwhile, vegetable oil and canola oil works excellently like those oils. 

Above these, if you want some special non-toxic oil, buy it from any cook’s warehouse or restaurant equipment store. However, what oil you choose for conditioning isn’t a big deal. You must be aware of oiling them when they look dry and uneven.

Tips 4: Wash Them Always By Hand

Remember never to put the wooden utensils or your handcrafted wood kitchenware in dishwashing soap. Throwing your wood pieces into dishwashing liquid will be enough to ruin the utensils forever. 

This is why it is best to use only your hand to wash them instead of steel wool. Try out some mild soap to keep your gorgeous hand soft and healthy. Handwashing keeps them stain-free. As an alternative, choose any bristled brush or toothbrush for this job.

Tips 5: Avoid Polyurethane Varnishes, and Beeswax For Oiling

Avoid using polyurethane or varnishes to oil your utensils. Things like them are often unsafe to eat, and they smell terrible. Sometimes those oil coatings will crack and chip off into the food. Similarly, beeswax is also not safe since they have a high tendency to melt at hot temperatures. So, what may happen if you enjoy soup with your beeswax wood spoon? All the wax will drop into your soup, making it tasteless.

What mistakes should be avoided when cleaning wooden spoons

When cleaning wooden spoons, avoid common mistakes like soaking them for extended periods, using harsh detergents, exposing them to excessive heat, or putting them in the dishwasher. Proper care preserves the integrity of your wooden utensils and keeps them in good condition for longer.


Why Should I Buy Quality Hardwood Utensils Instead Of Cheaper Bamboo or Softer Wood?

Well, you must choose quality hardwood utensils due to their amount of tightness in the pores, resistance to denting, and colorfastness. Professionals highly suggest most of these hardwoods for their uniqueness, longevity, grains, etc.

How To Get Rid Of Food Stains Like Berries Or Curry From Wooden Material?

It depends on the material of the wooden utensils. If they are made with cheap wood, removing such stains is tough. But if your utensils are made with hard maple, those will be proven, and do not get stained in pasta, berry, sauce, beets, blueberry juice, paprika, etc. But if they get stained, you can easily remove them by washing them three to four times with hot water. 

How Often Should I Replace My Wooden Utensils?

Wooden utensils are made with very heavy, high-core materials. In this sense, you won’t need to replace them like any other kitchen materials in your house. I love to use mine even though it has been passed from generation to generation.

How To Sanitize Wooden Cutting Boards And Spoons?

Put all the materials in hot soapy water one after one. Wash or rub them with both hands, or use any sponge. They would let you enjoy good fragments and smell-free use for many years. But do not use any bleach or harsh chemicals there.

What Is The Best Oil To Use On Wooden Utensils?

Mineral oil is one of the most common, effective oils on wooden utensils. You can also use food, virgin olive oil, and petroleum-based oil to oil the wood. But be careful about their side effects because most of them might destroy the wooden finish and decrease its long lifespan.

Final Wrap

Kitchen wooden cookware is essential since they help you in many affairs. I feel troubled when those elements get damaged or worse due to unawareness of regular care. But this time, it may not happen again. Because now you know how to clean wooden utensils like any expert. And you also guess about the cleaning time of those utensils. It only needs 4-5 minutes if you follow them all.


Keep those utensils in a dry and tidy kitchen drawer since germs and bacteria love to live in dark and damp places.

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