The Cutting Board that Celebrity Chefs Can’t Live Without
For those of you who voraciously follow along on all things Kitchn, you might be familiar with our Celebrity Tools Battles, a series in which we pit four celebrity chefs’ favorite gadgets against each other and pick our own personal favorite. Previous battles have included a toss-up of chef’s knives, nonstick pans, spatulas, and coffee gadgets. Our highly sophisticated ranking system can help narrow down a crowded field of choices for someone who’s in the market for any or all of the above.
Buy: John Boos Block Maple Wood Edge Grain Reversible Cutting Board, $137
This month, we hoped to compare the stars’ favorite cutting boards… until we found ourselves in a bit of a conundrum during the research phase. Almost every celebrity chef liked the same one. This cutting board was just so overwhelmingly popular, we couldn’t ignore it. So we scratched the battle element altogether and decided just to spotlight the brand — John Boos — and the chefs who love it.
If you’ve ever watched an episode of Barefoot Contessa, you’ve seen Ina chopping away on her Boos Block. In a house tour with House Beautiful, the home decor magazine points out that she uses “an extra-large and thick Maple R-Board by John Boos” in particular. You’ll also catch her all over Instagram dismembering cauliflower, arranging appetizers, and clinking glasses over her beloved Boos. For Ina, her cutting boards are so much more than, well, cutting boards. They’re staging areas, serving trays, and general work surfaces that help Ina do what she does best.
Alton Brown isn’t one to endorse a kitchen tool unless he unequivocally gives it his seal of approval. In his comprehensive knife buying guide, he specifically stresses the importance of pairing a great knife with a great cutting board. “Your board needs to be heavy and it needs to be rock maple. Plastic boards are fine for butchery, but when it comes to serious slicing and dicing (not to mention chopping and mincing), you want wood. Bamboo? I’m not a fan. Give me a maple board from the John Boos company every time. And no, they don’t pay me to say that.” Alton, we read you loud and clear.
Giada De Laurentiis
We did some digging and found that the celebrity chef recommended this cutting board on her lifestyle website, Giadzy, in a relevant roundup of the must-have items that people should include on the perfect kitchen registry. “A good cutting board is often overlooked, but it makes all the difference at prep time. Boos Boards are made of solid hardwood (I love the maple) and are a favorite among professional chefs,” Giada writes.
And last but not least (on this list at least), is Rachael Ray, the queen of the 30-minute meal who also endorses Boos boards. On her daytime talk show, she says that among the thousands of times that she’s been asked about her “must-have kitchen items” over the last decade, the Boos block is one of her essentials. “For years, and years, and years, and to this day at Food Network, I always chop on a big old Boos Board… What’s great about this is that you don’t need to clutter up your kitchen with a bunch of little ingredient bowls. When you chop on too small of a cutting board, you have to pile each ingredient into a little bowl so you have room to chop the next ingredient — what a drag.”
And then for her super smart tip: “If you use a big cutting board like this, even if you live in the tiniest of apartments, you can also put the cutting board on top of the sink and turn it into countertop space.”
Do you have a Boos cutting board?