How to Repair a Butcher Block

Butcher block is a common choice for cutting boards because it provides an excellent cutting surface. It is sometimes used for counter tops as well. When using butcher block, it is recommended to use the surface evenly, to prevent too much wear in one place. Cleaning it only requires a wet cloth; soaps and detergents are not recommended, according to the Butcher Block Specialist. While minor scratches and dents can be easily fixed, more significant scratches and damage require the expertise of a professional.

Preventive Care

Minor scratches or dents in butcher block can easily be repaired.

Step 1

Wipe up spills immediately. Moisture is not something you want to allow to linger on the butcher block, as it can cause damage.

Step 2

Clean stains using a damp cloth and dry thoroughly.

Step 3

Apply a coat of mineral oil to the finished butcher block surface with a cloth every four to six weeks. This will work to protect the surface and finish by keeping the moisture barrier intact.


Step 1

Rub minor scratches and dents with steel wool (a fine-grit sandpaper of #220 can also be used). Be sure to rub with the grain of the wood.

Step 2

Wipe the dust from the butcher block.

Step 3

Brush on a uniform coat of food-safe clear lacquer finish to the area that was sanded.

Step 4

Wipe the excess from the butcher block using a cloth.

Step 5

Allow to dry thoroughly before using the butcher block. If you prefer, you may add a second coat after allowing the first coat to dry for four to six hours. Twelve hours is the total drying time when two coats are applied. If applying a single coat, allow it to dry for at least six hours prior to using the butcher block.

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