How to clean wooden spoons without damaging them

Experts explain how to clean wooden spoons and if you should be boiling them

Wooden spoons in bowl on wooden counter
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Break down nasty food particles and learn how to clean wooden spoons to keep your cooking essentials looking like new. These versatile utensils are great for day-to-day cooking but require some extra care when it comes to washing the dishes. 

Wood is a porous material, meaning debris can get lodged in the cracks. Sounds gross right? Well no need to panic, with a little elbow grease, it's actually pretty easy to manage.

We spoke to experts about the best way to clean wooden spoons without cracking or damaging them. Once you get started, you'll be feeling motivated to clean your kitchen with ease.

How to clean wooden spoons

After coming across a TikTok wooden spoon cleaning hack on your FYP, you may be tempted to toss yours into some boiling water to get them clean. After all, you want to make sure your kitchen utensils are in great condition and aren't harboring any nasty bacteria.

But before you fire up the kettle, take a look at thes expert-approved ways to clean a wooden spoon so you don't accidently damage yours in the process.

Prices were correct at time of publishing at the time of publishing this article.

Wooden spoons lined up on white background

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Hand wash wooden spoons with dish soap

The easiest way to wash wooden spoons is to simply hand wash them in the sink. Simply use a gentle sponge and mild dish soap (we love Mrs. Meyers Clean Day dish soap available on Amazon) to scrub the spoon and remove any food and debris. 

"Avoid abrasive scrubbers or brushes that can scratch the wood. Instead, use a soft sponge or cloth to gently scrub the surface of the wooden spoon," says Angela Rubin, a cleaning expert from Hellamaid. This Scotch-Brite Gentle Clean sponge on Amazon is a great option for delicate materials like glass and wood.

Rinse with warm water and leave to air-dry, upright in a dish rack.

Clean wooden spoons in the dishwasher with gentle detergent

If you don't have time to hand-wash your wooden spoons, or they're in need of a serious deep clean, it is possible to clean them in a machine with a few dishwasher hacks.

First, check with the manufacturer to make sure they're dishwasher safe. Then wash them in a gentle cycle on low heat.

"If your dishwasher has a top rack, place the wooden spoons on it to avoid direct exposure to high heat and water pressure. Opt to skip the heated dry cycle if possible, as the high temperatures can cause the wood to warp or crack," says Angela. 

Use a gentle detergent, like these Seventh Generation detergent packs from Amazon, which are well-loved by customers with over 10k reviews.

Angela Rubin, cleaning expert at HellaMaid
Angela Rubin

Angela Rubin works at Hellamaid, a top-rated cleaning company in Canada. Hellamaid are industry experts specializing in residential and commercial cleaning services.

Should I boil wooden spoons?

Cleaning wooden spoons by boiling them has taken off as a recent trend on TikTok but it may not be a great method for your utensils. 

"Hot water can cause the wood to expand and potentially warp or crack. Avoid leaving wooden spoons submerged in water for extended periods, as this can lead to damage," says cleaning expert, Karina Toner.

Avoid boiling wooden spoons unless they're in desperate need of a deep clean or need to be sanitized.

Karina Toner, Operations Manager, Spekless Cleaning
Karina Toner

Karina Toner is a cleaning expert and the Operations Manager at Washington D.C.-based Spekless Cleaning. 

After drying, you may want to apply some food-grade oil, such as this Kate Naturals Mineral Oil from Amazon, to restore their shine. 

"Apply a small amount of mineral oil to your wooden spoons regularly to help maintain their finish and prevent drying and cracking," says Karina.

With the right dishwashing tools, cleaning wooden spoons is actually pretty easy. Once they're clean and dry, you'll be ready to organize kitchen utensils without the fuss.

Emily Lambe
Deputy Editor

Hey! I’m Emily and I’m the deputy digital editor at Real Homes. I’m here to bring you the latest decor trends, inspirational ideas, informative how tos, the latest celeb homes style and the best budget-friendly buys. I live in a rented apartment, making the most of small spaces and using accent pieces to make things pop. When I’m not writing, I’m usually doing yoga, eating chocolate or working on my skincare routine.