Is Mahogany Good For Cutting Boards? Let’s Check Its Magic Spell

Mahogany Wood

It’s always essential to choose the right cutting board when cooking. Otherwise, toxic bacteria from some foods may grow and multiply on cutting boards. In selecting the wooden cutting board, mahogany wood could be one of the best choices. But the question may be, “is mahogany good for cutting boards?”

The straightforward answer is yes. This is because mahogany is known for its excellent performance and resilience. Cut and grinding are effortless, and the parts do not deform even after using glue. 

Moreover, this wood for cabinets with extremely stable and clean with a natural sheen. It is widely appreciated for its responsiveness to all woodworking processes.

Does mahogany make a good cutting board?

Any wood can make a cutting board, but mahogany is good enough. That’s because, with natural elements, different types of wood have other oils, aromas, and flavors that can change foods. In terms of mahogany, it has a nice appearance and stability, but mahogany oil is allergic to some people.

Also, keep in mind that mahogany has different grades. Some mahogany species are softer. Still, you can use them for cutting board, and only you have to fill the grain.

Most of the mahogany species are hardwood. African mahogany has a Janaka hardness scale of 1220. The recommended range of Janaka hardness for cutting boards is around 850-1600. 

850 is suitable for cutting, and 1600 is good for chopping. Anything over the recommended range may dull your knife. Even you can use standard mahogany for cutting boards by filling the grain with a minimum Janaka of 850.

Things to remember: The Janaka hardness test measures the ability of various types of wood to defy pressure. Also, this test determines how nicely the wood withstands dents, impacts, and wear.

Australian arborist Gabriel Janka invented this method in 1906. The unit of measurement is “lbf,” or the pound-force.

The wood will be softer as the range is low. The test is carried out on the board’s surface, and the pressure is applied perpendicular to its fibers, which indicates that the process collects data on transverse hardness.

Is mahogany good for cutting boards? Let’s Explore its basic characteristics

Without any doubt, the answer is yes, as we’ve mentioned earlier. This question is the most crucial part of our discussion. Now evaluate my answer: “is mahogany wood good for cutting boards?”

Basic Characteristics

Mahogany has different varieties grown primarily in Central and North America. It oils and polishes nicely and can also be polished to a high sheen. 

Hardwood mahogany is distinguished by its red-brown color and streaked appearance. That’s why this wood looks marvelous as a cutting board.

Editor’s tip: I’ve made a mahogany cheese plate and breadboard instead of a cutting board. Both boards turned out very well, and people praised their pleasant outlook and use. While I prefer to use these items, the choice is yours.

1. Durability

Mahogany is famous for its durability and hardness. Its hardness makes it,  Therefore, it is an impressive wood for guitar bodies and luxury goods. 

Also, this extremely durable hardwood is an ideal option for making furniture and home accessories, like cutting boards.

Remember: All mahogany species have a Janaka hardness of 850-1220. You can see this table to learn more about Janaka’s hardness. 

2. Grain

Mahogany’s grain is fine to medium. The texture ranges from explicit to curly or wavy. Irregular fibers are considered alluring and create characteristic and visually pleasing “figures” – the weave and interlocking of the wood fibers.

This grain can produce both end-grain and edge-grain cutting boards. This feature is quite a plus for using mahogany for cutting boards.

3. Waterproof

Mahogany woods are generally water resistant. However, it can be in prolonged contact with moisture and water. People use it for outdoor and marine purposes such as boat building and decking.

It will last for decades with minimal maintenance. Many experienced boat builders prefer mahogany for boat and deck construction.

Now talk about cutting board. When we cut any wet vegetables or fruits on the cutting board, water components from the cutting staff may damage the board. So, mahogany can be a good option on that occasion.

4. Stability

It is a sustainable wood that will not modify its properties after long use. But over time, the color darkens. That’s because it will not shrink or expand with changing weather conditions. Therefore, your cutting board will last a long.

5. Food safety

Mahogany is a light-grained wood with a porous structure. Mahogany pores are much larger than other hardwoods. 

So, there is a risk of allergies to bacteria. But there is almost no chance that redwood or mahogany releases toxins. It ensures the safety of your food.

6. Easy to handle

Mahogany wood is easily worked with hand tools and machines. This tree can be easily shaped with tools. It cuts and drills very quickly. Being dense, it holds a nail and a screw very well. That means you can easily shape your cutting boards.

7. Hold integrity

This wood is resistant to shrinkage, swelling, and warping for an extended period. This feature makes it ideal for rooms subject to excessive moisture. So, this wood can be excellent as a cutting board.

Is mahogany food safe? Say Yeah or Neah!

Yes (mentioned earlier), mahogany is food safe due to its porous structure. Also, remember that any board may put you unhealthy if it gets dirty on your tools and work surfaces. 

In general, wood contains antibacterial properties, so the claim that wooden cutting board is the worst material is completely wrong. 

You must maintain some hygiene to keep your cutting board food safe and understand whether mahogany is safe for cutting boards or not.


Foodstuffs such as raw meat have bacteria (which die later in the cooking procedure) that can contaminate other foods, such as fresh fruits, bread, and vegetables. 

Use different cutting boards for each to avoid contamination. Non-porous surface is best for poultry, raw meat, and seafood.


Wash out cutting boards in warm to hot water after each use. We can use Parker & Bailey Furniture Multi-Surface Wood Cleaner for cleaning. 

It is essential not to leave liquids and juices (especially liquids from natural meat) on the cutting board for a long time.

Disinfectant solution 

You may periodically disinfect the shelves with a unique cleaning solution for more hygiene. You can spray an ammonia disinfectant. However, it is best for organic materials, like a wooden cutting board.


Bacteria flourish in moisture. Anyway, it’s important to dry your cutting boards completely after washing them. Dry or wash it with a paper towel. Always avoid using kitchen towels.


You should visually inspect the cutting board from time to time. If the cutting board has deep, obvious grooves, you must replace them. It is true for all types of cutting boards, but when you select a quality one, this will not often happen.

Pros and Cons: Mahogany wood 

Mahogany is a hardwood that is harder than pine, oak, etc. It is even 70% harder and stronger than other woods. Besides, it has some drawbacks. Let’s find it all!


Hardness and durability with no pockets or grooves make it waterproof and scratch-resistant. You can cut mahogany planks from logs split into quarters, so there is less chance of those planks warping for heat and other conditions.

The biggest benefit of this hardwood is the look. It will suit any furniture, room decor, or accessories. 

Moreover, it does not fade as it absorbs sunlight. Since it is dark, mahogany is dust-free and always looks clean and nice.


Since it is harder than others, cutting it and giving it different shapes and a tedious installation process can be challenging. 

As mahogany absorbs sunlight, the wood color will darken over time. The durability of this wood makes it more costly than other wood.

Is mahogany wood good for a chopping board?

Yes, mahogany is good for a chopping board. That’s because it has a higher bending and compressive strength. Let’s have a look at the power of African mahogany.

Flexural strength10,700 psi
Compressive strength 6460psi
Density 0.42 kg/m3
Hardness830 pounds

African mahogany has a Janaka hardness range of 1220. It is not so high or not so less. Lower Janaka hardness may break or higher Janaka hardness may dull your knife.

Is mahogany good for outdoor furniture?

Mahogany For Cutting Boards

Mahogany wood is the top choice for making furniture due to its exceptional durability, longevity, and timeless beauty. It is light pinkish brown to dark brown. As it grows older, this tone becomes more pronounced.

Mahogany has an almost three-dimensional appearance of an inner glow that also deepens with age. 

Also, the grains are straight, braided, wavy, or jagged, with a natural sheen and smooth texture. Mahogany is durable and resistant to moisture, termites, and temperature extremes.

Is mahogany good for carving?

Between softwoods and hardwoods, mahogany is ideal for any woodcarving technique. Moreover, this wood provides an aesthetically delightful result and often acts as a central material for different projects. 

Mahogany includes a reddish hue and requires no or little work, including staining the wood and applying veneer. So, they are good for carving, especially chip carving.


What wood is not good for cutting boards?

Woods that are porous, soft, and toxic are not good for cutting boards. Softwoods include pine, cedar, and fir. Porous woods are prone to bacterial attack, softwood may crack quickly, and toxic wood may damage your food.

What wood works best for cutting boards?

Hard maple or sugar maple works best for a cutting board. They don’t fade quickly and last for so long. Also, they have a Janaka hardness range of around 1450 lbf. It’s resistant to pressure and strength. That’s why it’s a good option for cutting board.

Related: Is Hickory Good For Cutting Boards?

Is end grain better for cutting boards?

As for the cutting board, the end grain is better. It is durable and hides cutting knife marks. These cutting boards don’t dull the knife but have a higher price tag due to the labor of production.

Is mahogany good for end grain cutting board?

Yes, mahogany is good for end-grain cutting boards. That’s because mahogany is a hardwood, and it has fine grains. So they are disease free and good for cutting boards.

Can you use African mahogany for a cutting board?

Yes, you can. African mahogany is red. Also, it has a Janaka hardness of around 850 lbf. They are durable and don’t crack so quickly. With appearance and quality, African mahogany is one of the best wood for cutting board.

Which wood is the best for a cutting board?

Maple is best for a cutting board. It is a closed-grain hardwood. However, it lasts long and is free from bacteria and termites. Their price is nearly lower in terms of other cutting boards.

Final Verdict: 

You have got your answer. If you’ve any more questions, contact us directly. Also, avoid toxic softwoods as they may crack during cutting. It’s better to use mahogany if you use them as a serving board or tray.

About Adam Larry

Hello everyone! I’m Adam Larry, a pro woodworker, an expert project planner, and woodworking tools expert also owner of this website. From hand tools to power tools, I have extensive knowledge of all aspects of woodworking and take pride in creating beautiful and functional pieces for clients. I feel glad to share my woodworking experience with you with enormous excitement and enthusiasm.