The kitchen is arguably the heart of every home. It enjoys the highest traffic day in and day out. It’s also where all the action takes place as all the family meals are prepared. But as someone who loves to cook, I know how frustrating it can be to always have to use and clean a cutting board in which to prepare my ingredients. I’m sure a lot of those who love to cook can attest to how I feel.
One of the reasons stone countertops, particularly quartz, are a popular kitchen countertop choice is due to their hardiness. This has led to the notion that quartz countertops can function as cutting boards themselves. Is that really true? Can quartz countertops be used to cut food directly without any damage to the countertop itself?
Yes, You Can Cut Food Directly on Quartz Countertop
The good news is that quartz is an extremely tough and durable material. In fact, it’s one of the hardest materials around. It is one of the materials to have a great capacity to resist cuts and scratches.
As opposed to natural stone slabs that are naturally solid, quartz is an engineered stone and is made up of small pieces of stone mixed with a resin and is compacted. This resin mixture gives the quartz countertop its strength and durability.
So to answer the question: yes, you can directly cut food on quartz countertops since they can resist any scratching or slicing damage that is inflicted on their surface. However, you can only do this up to a certain extent.
Use a Cutting Board, If You May
Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. The same, old adage also applies to cutting directly on quartz countertops.
There are many different reasons why you should NOT cut directly on quartz countertops. One of these reasons is that the surface can still suffer damage when enough force is applied to it. Quartz is not a perfectly hard material – nothing is. That is why our quartz countertop can still be damaged when you hack at it with great force.
Another reason is to protect your precious knives from damage. Incredibly hard surfaces are one of the worst enemies of sharp edges. By continually slicing food on hard surfaces such as quartz countertops, your knives will lose its sharp edge and will be unable to cut food at all. This is a big no-no for those who love to cook.
And by definition, the ability to resist scratches and slicing damage to the countertops is exactly that – just being scratch and slice resistant. This does not mean quartz countertops are damage-proof. Therefore, while it may still resist damage, it’s not entirely in the clear. Scratch marks, dents, and chips can still be seen on your countertop surface if you continue to cut directly on your quartz countertop.
When working with raw meat, use a cutting board. The meat itself doesn’t damage the countertop. It’s what is left behind that can hurt your countertop, other food items, or even your health. Various meats contain bacteria that can seep through small openings on the quartz countertop surface. These bacteria can propagate and contaminate other food items, which could also lead to problems for your health. You can, of course, clean the surface using disinfectants, but these can still damage your countertop seal, which opens up your countertop surface to staining.
Finally, staining and acid damage may be seen on your countertop if you continue to cut food directly on your quartz countertop. As you cut, slice, or chop certain foods, they will secrete juices. These juices, if not cleaned or treated properly, can stain your countertop surface. This is especially true if you cut acidic foods on your quartz countertop as they can wear out the seal on your countertop, allowing the juices to stain the surface quickly.
You can get away with a quick cut here and there such as slicing an apple or an orange. But for preparing meals, use a cutting board. You’ll be doing your quartz countertop, your knives, and your health a favor.
How to Prevent Damage on Your Quartz Countertop
- As stated above always use cutting boards when cutting food and preparing meals. Cutting boards are easier to clean and don’t require special disinfectants to prevent bacterial growth.
- In case of spills, always clean them up immediately. While countertop sealing can prevent any spills from causing stains, there is still a chance that stains will eventually form if they are not immediately cleaned.
- Extremely hot objects such as hot pots and pans in the kitchen should not be placed directly on top of your quartz countertops as these can discolor the surface over time. Too much heat can react with the quart surface’s seal, which can create burn marks or other forms of discoloration.
- Abrasive pads are, well, abrasive, which can scratch the surface of your quartz countertop. If there are dried-up spills or stains too difficult to clean, use plastic knives or scrapers to remove instead of highly-abrasive pads. For easier to clean spills, a soft cloth and special cleaners are enough to keep the quartz countertop surface clean.
- When cleaning your quartz countertop, use only specialized cleaners to avoid any damage to the seal. Avoid using regular household cleaners as they may react with the seal, damaging the seal and your quartz countertop surface.
- You should never stand or sit on your quartz countertop. Also, avoid placing heavy objects on your countertop. While quartz is a durable material, countertops can still be damaged due to heavy objects.
About Granite Selection
Granite Selection specializes in everything natural stone countertops: from fabrication to installation. We take great pride in our craftsmanship. We strive to provide outstanding customer service and install high-quality countertops.
For all of your countertop needs and more, give us a call. We are more than happy to provide you with the assistance you need. Call us now at (888) 906-3317.