How to Fix a Warped Cutting Board
30 July 04

This is a riddle: How do you make a growing chef cry? Cut ripe onion you say? Do not. It just took out your precious chopping board and found it had warped. Whether this chopping board is handed down from generation to generation from your great-grandmother Sue Publicity Board, made from the original wood of the Mayflower itself, or from a large piece of wood in the dollar store, every chef will be deeply moved To a warped cutting board.


Most chefs believe that once the cutting board is warped, this is irreparable. The fact is that depending on the severity of the warp (also known as "cupping"), you can use some simple methods to repair it at home.

Method 1) Water and Pressure

In this method, what you want to do is put the chopping board into a bucket of hot water and allow it to soak until the water passes completely. A few hours is enough, but if you have a slab, you can even let it sit overnight.


Once it is saturated, place it on a flat surface and place the flat object on a cutting board (wooden board, baking sheet, etc.) and add a weight to it. The heavier the better, a stack of books or a water-filled cooler can work. It's even better if you have wooden clips and can hold the cutting board.

Now, this repair method may sound strange, but what you are actually doing here is trying to warp the board back by expanding the wood fibers with water and waiting for the board to dry. Please be patient because you want the board to dry completely before removing heavy objects or clips, so it takes 2 to 3 days. You can also point a fan on the board to help it dry faster. The goal is to restore the wood fiber to its original flat shape after drying.

The same concept is used by professional cutting board manufacturers such as larch to prevent warping because they dry kiln plates under slate weighing up to a thousand pounds. This will eliminate moisture and flatten the circuit board.

Method 2) Heating and Moisture

If your cardboard is less than or equal to 1 inch in thickness and is only slightly distorted, you can try repairing with this method. Be warned that this method may cause your board to break, depending on the bending of the wood and the severity of the situation, so please take your own risk!


First, get a clothes iron and a wet towel. Place the board on a hard, flat surface with the warped side facing up. Then put a wet towel on your table and open your clothes iron. Once it is hot, start ironing your chopping board just like you would wear a wrinkled dress and loosely use the steam button. Be sure to put some elbows on top, because the work here is a combination of heat, pressure, and humidity, trying to bend the wood back into place. Moisture imparts plasticity to wood, and heat and pressure are the forces that force the wood fibers back.

In the woodworking world, this method is similar to steam bending in that it uses hot steam and pressure to force the board to bend or bend. This leads us to...

Method 3) Steam Method

The principle here is to re-expand the wood fibers and thus flatten the boards. First, put a pot full of water on the stove. Next, place a pan into the pan and place the cutting board on top of the pan with the concave side facing up (this means "collision" toward the bottom). Slowly boil the water until you see the steam enter and hold. Fortunately, when the fiber starts to expand evenly, the heat and moisture in the steam will eventually cause the cutting plate to flatten out.


Please note that due to the expansion of the wood, steaming will make the cutting board most likely to crack. If you use this method on cardboard or butcher blocks, use low-boiling paperboard carefully, increase the cardboard height as much as possible, or use very large cardboard to evenly steam the cardboard. If the steam is concentrated, this area may swell and cause the surrounding wood joints to break.

Expect 1 to 2 hours, and be aware that your water won't boil or run out, or you'll have bigger problems with your hands. Once your chopping block is self-healing, it is recommended that it be loaded with weight when it is dry (similar to method one) to ensure that it will not warp again.

Method 4) Cutting or sandpaper

As a true last resort, if your motherboard does not bend again, your only solution is to make physical modifications to the cutting board. Although you may not have woodworking tools in your home, local carpentry or furniture manufacturers may help.

For edge grain chopping boards, you need to run the board through a planer to remove the uneven ends. This of course will reduce the thickness of your chopping board but solve the problem.

For end grain boards (eg, John Booth tessellated chop), the best option is a wide belt sander, which can level the board and keep it even. Attempting to use a planer on the end texture board on the blade may be too difficult and cause damage.

The best repair method is always a preventive measure

Although we hope that one of the above methods can be solved, remember that the primary cause of warpage is improper maintenance. The use of wet cardboard, especially if only one side is wet, can cause uneven expansion and contraction. You always want to make sure that you don't leave the cutting board exposed to water for a long time, and always cut it dry once it's finished. Keeping your paperboard oiled with the proper oil both prevents water ingress and prevents the board from drying out.