Japanese knives are one of the essential tools for chefs around the world. With their quality craftsmanship, they are worldwide. Japanese knives are unique because of their variety and the traditional techniques associated with their use.
However, a professional knife without a compatible cutting board is not as useful as it should be. Therefore, it is requisite to have a sound cutting board on your hand. An excellent wooden or bamboo board goes a long way in protecting your knife’s durability.
Before moving forward let’s have a look on our top 5 recommendations:
What is a Japanese knife?
Japanese knives are traditionally called Wa-Bocho. These traditional knives are historically connected to the samurai swords. Still today, the blade forging technique for Japanese knives is the same as samurai swords.
The distinct feature of Japanese knives is their blade or kataba. Only the outer side of the blade is beveled and sharpened, while the inner edge is flat. This unique build allows the knife to make smooth, precise cuts.
These single edge beveled knives the culinary trademark of exquisite Japanese cuisine. The Wa-Bocho can be divided into two further categories. The honyaki blade is forged from steel with high steel content. They are considered top-grade knives. The Kasumi blade consists of two metals forged together, with the cutting edge made of carbon steel.
Why is the Cutting Board necessary?
A Japanese knife requires utmost care. A cutting board is a necessary partner to any knife. Japanese knives are remarkable tools. Hence, a good cutting board protects the knife from dullness and damage.
Using a good cutting board increases the longevity of the blade and makes it last longer. High-quality cutting boards prevent the growth of molds and bacteria.
Moreover, the cutting boards provide a smooth and level surface for the knife to land on. The use of plates or dishes as a cutting board damages the knife and increases the risk of getting injured.
In addition to that, uneven surfaces do not provide the same balance and control over the knife.
Who uses Japanese knives?
Japanese knives are popular among the top professional chefs of the world. As we know that Japanese cuisine includes dishes with raw fish in them. These dishes have visually pleasing presentations.
A significant contributor to those slick and smooth cut pieces of fish are Japanese sushi knives. Traditionally, Japanese knives were mostly used by professional chefs in restaurants; however, now, amateur chefs and home-cooks all use Japanese knives.
Therefore, Japanese knives have found their use in the hands of all young and old chefs.
You can consider under listed aspects while buying cutting board for your Japanese knife or simply select any one from below listed cutting boards which are up to standard to be used with Japanese knives.
- Type of knife: Buying a cutting board for your Japanese knife; you must know the kind of knife you own. Different knives have different blades. Some are beveled on both sides, while others are single beveled. These small details may not look like much but matter a lot.
- Wood preference: Cutting boards can be soft or hard, depending on the type of wood used. Some hardwoods damage the Japanese knives on impact, causing the blades to become dull. Therefore, before buying a cutting board, make sure the wood used will not damage your knife.
- Size: Cutting boards come in all different sizes. If you like having more space on your board, you can go for bigger sizes. However, a more significant size often increases the weight of the board. On the other hand, if you have narrowed reservations, then you should stick to smaller boards.
- Care and handling: When it comes to maintenance, plastic and glass boards are preferable. However, these materials can damage the blade. Japanese knives are not flexible and prone to chipping and cracking. Therefore, it is advised to use wooden boards because they are more durable and suitable for Japanese knives.
Which Class of Cutting Board is Favored for Japanese Knives?
Japanese knives are forged from high carbon steel, which is not a flexible material. Therefore, these knives tend to crack and chip off if not handled with care.
1. Wooden Boards
Wooden boards are the best option for Japanese knives. There is also a contrast between edge grain and end grain.
End grain wooden boards have grains of wood running up and down length-wise along with the board, but edge grain boards only have wooden stripes layered together.
It is preferable to go for end grain wooden boards because they last longer. Self-healing wood is also a better option because of its malleable nature to heal the cut marks.
Another great material for cutting boards is bamboo.
Bamboo Chopping boards are stiff and impenetrable. They don’t tend to move around quickly on the countertop and therefore provide a stable cutting. Because of their dense nature, they also resist water absorption. This helps the food retain its flavorful juices, which are sometimes absorbed by the cutting boards.
Bamboo boards are also very light-weight and easy to carry.
However, these boards are not suitable for cutting tricky materials. They are often preferred for cutting herbs and greens. A lot of people around the world have shifted from wooden to bamboo boards for household use.
10 Best Cutting Boards for Japanese Knives
Japanese cutting knives are considered the most piercing among all the peers. Not every cutting board is competent enough to brace the Japanese challenge on the chin. Nonetheless, we have picked some of the brave products that are throwing the gauntlet against the razor-sharp Japanese knives.
1. John Boos Cutting Board
- Maple wood — The hand-picked Maple wood is considered one of the most reliable surfaces for food prep.
- Dual usability — Both sides of the cutting board could be used; one is flat while the second side is laced with juice grooves.
- 1.5-inch thick — The 1.5-inch thickness makes the board viable to cut any staff.
The USA-made John Boos cutting board is a specialized version for enduring the piercing sharp Japanese knives. The 15-inch wideness and 1.5-inch thickness make John Boos a durable cutting board to be used for decades.
Maple wood is used as a base material engraved on one side to accumulate the juice; where the juice is waste, you can drain it by using the flip-flat side. Moreover, lift with ease thanks to integrated hand-grips. Overall, the R-grade cutting board could prove a nice selection for your kitchen’s decor.
2. Bamboo Cutting Boards for Kitchen
- Bamboo cutting board — Bamboo is a durable option to cater to Japanese knives.
- 2-in-1 surface — Freshware can be used at both ends.
- Ergonomic handle — The ergonomic handle allows comfy lifting.
Freshware is a set of three bamboo cutting boards aptly designed to cater to Japanese knives of varying sizes. Freshware picks up the finest of the bamboo breed, namely Moso bamboo. This 100% organic option allows you to cut the sensitive items onto it. Cut all the colorful edibles on the surface sans caring about the cutting board being stained. Freshware is easy to be entertained with hot water.
Besides cutting, Freshware can also be used as a serving tray for veggie, fruits, wine, meat, or bread. The sleek two-in-one board is adorned with rounded handles and edges.Slice up chicken breasts, fillet chicken, chop meat, or cut any fruits and vegetables with this durable cutting board.
3. Large Walnut Wood Cutting Board
- American black walnut wood — The American black walnut wood is highly resilient against the Japanese knives’ bumping.
- Rich dark brown hue — The dark brown hue extends an elegant display to the onlookers.
- Knife-friendly cutting surface — Soft and straight walnut grains prevent dulling of Japanese knives.
Virginia Boys cutting board is both elegant and durable to the bone. The rich chocolate hue is unique, making it a perfect choice for gifting. Furthermore, the soft but porous surface does not let your knives down. The juice groove is a nice trap to hold on to the desired liquids on the run.
Taking advantage of Virginia Boys, you could carve meat, cut vegetables, chop herbs, and slice fruits in a nifty manner. The estimated life-span of walnut wood is 25 years; the wood is kiln-dried and smothered to present you a finished product.
Early breakage makes you liable to claim your money back; the brand has the option intact. Lastly, the stunning beauty of this cutting board makes it a workhorse of your kitchen.
4. Heim Concept Organic Bamboo Cutting Board
- Organic bamboo — Organic bamboo construction provides a universal cutting board for all edibles.
- Extra-large — 18 × 12 × 1″ size is spacious enough to cater to heavy-duty tasks.
- Serving platter — The simple but elegant cutting board can be seconded as a serving platter.
Heim Concept cutting board is constructed on simple bamboo patterns that do not cause an iota of harm to Japanese cutlery; the construction is 100% organic. Besides cutting operations, you may also leverage the Heim Concept as a serving platter for grassy and leafy substances. The spacious size of 18 × 12 × 1 is sufficient to cater to expanded hodge-podge.
After all the messy cutting, this cutting board could be washed with soap and warm water. Furthermore, the Moso bamboo is naturally harvested and is free of BPA or toxins. The Heim Concept’s aesthetics are over-the-top; deep drip grooves confine water, and natural coloring patterns charm up the positive vibes.
5. Hardwood Chef Premium Thick Butcher Block with Groove
- End grain Acacia wood — The end grain Acacia wood bolsters your food cutting experience.
- Deep juice grooves — The deep juice grooves save the run-off liquids.
- Eye-catching design — The natural deep shimmering and hues extend an elegant look to the onlookers.
Hardwood Chef is a two-inch-thick cutting board with a non-slip finish to ensure easy cutting sans warping or damaging your precious Japanese knife sets. Hardwood Chef is an incredible board to entertain the fruits, vegetables, and meat evenhandedly.
The deep juice grooves restrict the way of wasting the precious food juice. Hardwood chef is a beautifully designed board reflecting the unique pattern and glittering hues. If you order, you will receive this durable-cum-beautiful wooden board in nicely wrapped butcher paper.
A variety of items can be facilitated through Hardwood Chef; turkey, beef, pork, brisket, ribs, veggies, cheddar, prosciutto, to name a few. The 16 x 12 x 1¾ inches wide cutting board with supporting grips could be a nice pick for your kitchen’s decor.
6. Ironwood Gourmet Acacia Wood Cutting Board
- Acacia wood — Acacia wood is considered the best option against Japanese knives.
- End grain — The end grain pattern minimizes the wear and tear up to a minimum of zero.
- Sushi-specialist — The ideal facilitation piece for sashimi and sushi, complete with accouterments.
If you are looking for a safer option against your Japanese knives, Ironwood Gourmet could be the best pick. The end-grain wood minimizes the wear and tear both for board and cutlery. The foundation material Acacia wood is famous for its somber patterns.
The multifunctional board could be used as a cutting board, serving board, and a prep station. Fortunately, the dense nature of Acacia makes it a natural anathema for bacteria. Almost every edible could be catered onto Ironwood Gourmet via the Acacia magic.
7. Acacia Extra-Large End Grain Cutting Board
- Ergonomic hand grips — The ergonomic hand grips allow comfy handling.
- Spacious dimensions — 17 x 13 x 2″ dimension tag is comfy enough to cater to the hardcore cutting.
- Non-porous and hygienic — Acacia is naturally non-porous and hygienic, preventing your foodstuff from malware.
La Mongoose cutting board is the epitome of quality, durability, and aesthetics. Crafted with finely picked end-grain Acacia wood, La Mongoose is equipped with comfy handles to carry. Moreover, this spacious cutting board can be used on both sides, while juice grooves aptly collect the excess liquid during food prep.
In short, La Mongoose is a highly recommended, hygienic, and beautiful cutting board to serve the masses. Please, find it in an environment-friendly casing.
8. SoulFino Bamboo Butcher Block
- Bamboo construction — Bamboo is a sought-after pack for treating Japanese cutlery.
- Scratch resilient — SoulFino cutting board does not scare from the knife’s scars thanks to bamboo construction.
- Easy wash — Bathe in warm water and make your cutting board neat and clean in a jiffy.
SoulFino cutting board is a fine touch of elegance, braving the sharp scars of the Japanese invasion. If you are tired of cutting boards that get stained easily, this one could relieve you of all worries.
SoulFino is beautifully crafted by organic bamboo, keeping in view all the cutting boards’ instructional nitty-gritty. Chop heavy meat pieces to the wonderful grassy objects evenhandedly on a cutting board. SoulFino could be a nice pick due to low maintenance, scratches, high styling, decor, and durability. Turn this board into a serving tray or trivet by a quick flip. Overall, SoulFino is a hassle-free pick.
9. Bamboo Cutting Board with Juice Groove
- Mess proof grooves — The drip grooves hold the liquids conveniently.
- Multi-tasker — Flip Indigo True cutting board upside down and use it as a platter.
- Eco-friendly and biosecure — The bamboo construction makes it superhuman and environment-friendly.
Indigo True is the most convenient cutting board in the context of Japanese cutting knives. We have marked it the most convenient; because of its spacious size, ergonomic handles, top-notch design, mess-proof liquid collection, and multi-usage. It is tough to find all such goodness in a single product.
Lastly, the bamboo construction perches Indigo True under an extremely safe bubble that takes note of your health with every stroke of piercing Japanese knives.
10. Greener Chef Cutting Boards
- Steamed compressed technology — The cutting-edge steamed compressed technology builds the Greener Che cutting board to last long.
- Microbe resistant — Bacteria is a far cry owing to organic bamboo surface.
- Drip grooves — Drip grooves prevent messy spills.
Greener Chef is a smart bamboo cutting board that may seem naive on the face value but is highly resilient against the bumps and subsequent cracks. The 18″ × 12.5″ size is on-spot, neither too broad nor shortened.
Make your gravies, glazes, and sauces more sumptuous by saving the food juice through the deep grooves. The same cutting board can be picked as a presentation space to present your delicacies. The Greener Chef picks bamboo from the tested soils. Overall, this is a cost-effective and value-for-money product.
Professional Japanese knives are a staple for every professional kitchen. It adds to the sophistication and quality of the wood. However, due to their blade material, they require extra care and maintenance.
A good cutting board is a worthy investment for anyone who owns a Japanese knife and wants to use it for a long time. Japanese knives are highly durable, comfortable, versatile tools.
Wooden cutting boards prevent untimely damage to the knife and reduce the blade’s impact, preventing cracking. Therefore, it would be a great decision to get a good wooden or bamboo cutting board for your Japanese knife.