How To Remove Stains From A Butcher’s Block

By Ryan Leavitt •  Updated: 02/02/21 •  5 min read

In recent years, butcher’s blocks have risen in popularity like crazy.

They’re a great choice for countertops and can give off a very rustic yet classy aesthetic.

That being said, they require a fair amount of maintenance.

This is because, over time, butcher’s blocks tend to accumulate stains from wine, food, and other things.

Luckily, with a couple of materials and a bit of elbow grease, you can easily get it back to tip-top condition!

In this article, we’re looking at a couple of ways you can clean your butcher’s block.

Keep reading to learn more.

The Method

There are actually a couple of different methods out there that you can use to remove a stain from a butcher’s block.

The right method to use will depend on the type of stain you have, what materials you have available, and how long it has been since the last time you cleaned it.

But don’t worry, we’ll be looking at a few different techniques designed to handle different stains in this article.

Doing A Full Refresh

This has to be done if your block is in terrible condition and needs to do a restart.

A full refresh of a butcher’s block will require you to sand and oil it back into its original state.

To do that, you’re going to need a couple of things.

First of all, you’ll need a palm sander and rough, medium, and fine sandpaper.

If you don’t already have the materials, you can easily find them in your local hardware store.

Aside from that, you’ll also need some beeswax oil for butcher’s blocks to give it a beautiful finish and rehydrate the wood.

To start, you’ll need to clean the block thoroughly and then use the rough sandpaper and the palm sander to get the stains out.

This doesn’t take too much effort and looks very satisfying.

Make sure to pay close attention to the darker stains on the block when going through the wood.

Once that is done, switch to the medium-grain paper and run it on the block two times.

After that, you’ll need to get the light-grain sandpaper and do one more pass, making sure to pay close attention to the top and side of the board since they need a little bit more TLC than other areas.

Finally, after sanding all the stains out, all you need to do is rub some of the oil onto the board’s surface.

Let it sit for around 15 minutes, then wipe away any excess.

For the best results, we recommend doing this every day for at least three days after sanding.

The oil is there to protect the finish and make sure that no water or liquid seeps into the wood, resulting in long-term damage.

To really maintain your block, make sure to do this at least once a year.

Lemon & Salt For Light Stains

If you don’t need to do a full refresh of your board just yet, then this might be the right method.

It does a great job at giving the butcher’s block a very fragrant scent, and it also helps eliminate light stains that can occur from time to time.

As you probably guessed, all you’ll need for this method is lemon and salt.

Pour a generous amount of salt onto the surface of your countertop.

Make sure that the surface is completely covered.

After that, you’ll need to cut a lemon in half and squeeze some juice onto the salt to make a paste.

Then, rub the pulpy and fleshy side of the fruit onto the surface.

Use the lemon as a scrubber and really scrub the troubled areas and let the juices seep in.

You’ll need to let this paste sit and soak into the board overnight, so make sure it’s in a clean and safe space.

After waiting, all you have to do is rinse everything off and dry the board properly.

This will clean the board and remove some of the light stains on it.

Removing Dark Stains

If there are some dark stains on the board and you don’t want to sand and oil the block all over again, all you’ll need is warm water, white vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, a cloth, etc., cotton ball.

Make a solution mixing a tablespoon of hydrogen peroxide with a warm water cup, and dab it onto the stain.

After that, you’ll need to dab it again with a cotton ball soaked in vinegar.

To finish the job, all you have to do is get the cloth and wipe everything off.

This is a great method for removing dark stains and has been used by homemakers worldwide with a lot of success.


And that’s how to remove stains on your butcher’s block.

It’s a straightforward job to do, especially if you have extra time on your hands.

So if you’ve been looking to restore your countertops to their original state, then we highly recommend you use any one of these methods in your home!

And if you do, you’ll find your countertops looking brand new in no time!

Ryan Leavitt

Hi my name is Ryan Leavitt a Marine Corps Veteran and currently an over the road trucker (Long Haul). I am no expert chef but am enjoying preparing my own meals on the road and testing all the different knives.