10 Reasons Why Wooden Spoons Are The Best

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There are multiple wooden spoon uses that don’t just include mixing. Here’s how to use this versatile cooking utensil, plus the best way to clean your wooden spoon for long-term use.

Collection of wooden spoons in wooden container (wooden spoon uses).

Grandma was right. Wooden spoons really are the best. They are inexpensive, versatile, and often overlooked in the kitchen. They don’t transfer heat the way metal spoons do, and they won’t scratch your non-stick cookware.

Personally, I’ve always loved using a wooden utensil over a metal spoon. It’s probably my favorite kitchen tool. In fact, I have a few very special wooden spoons that were hand-carved, which I picked up from artisans at craft shows. I love buying them this way because you can “try on” the spoon to find the one that fits in your hand just right.

At the end of this post, I’ll address any concerns you have about bacteria in wooden spoons, and I’ll tell you the best way to clean them.

But first, let’s look at 10 great wooden spoon uses and why you should go to Amazon right now and buy a bunch of wooden spoons.

10 Reasons Wooden Spoons Are Just the Best

1. They hold your oven door open

When you turn off the heat but want to keep something warm, put a wooden spoon between the door and the oven. It will hold it open just enough to let out some, but not all, of the heat.

2. They are perfect for putting holes in cakes

The handle of a wooden spoon is the foolproof way to make uniform holes in a cake so that you can pour something yummy inside.  This is one of my favorite wooden spoon uses, which I use for our poke cakes. Want to try it out? Check out these recipes: strawberry poke cake, coconut poke cake, s’mores poke cake, and jello poke cake.

Another use for a wooden spoon is to dimple focaccia dough before baking.

3. They will keep your pot from foaming over the sides

Lay a wooden spoon across the top of a boiling pot to prevent the foam from spilling all over your stovetop. This isn’t meant to be kept there for hours. It appears to help for a time, but if the boil gets rolling like crazy, turn down the heat to avoid overflow.

4. They can tell you whether or not the oil is hot enough

Put the end of a wooden spoon in the oil. If it bubbles, it’s ready. The hotter the oil, the smaller and faster the bubbles.

5. They won’t cause a metallic taste

If you’re preparing something with acidic ingredients, such as tomato sauce, regular spoons can react with those ingredients and cause a distinct metallic taste. Wooden cooking utensils are nonreactive, so no worries there. They also won’t leach harmful chemicals, so it’s a win-win.

6. They’ll secure your cabinets

Slide a wooden spoon between the cabinet handles to keep them closed. If you have a nosy dog or cat, this is a great solution to keep them out of places they shouldn’t be.  

7. They are ideal for drying pasta and shaping foods

Whether you are a homemade pasta fan or you love to bake delicately shaped cookies and pastry, you’ll find wooden spoons to be indispensable. Lay one across a big bowl and drape your noodles or other goodies over the spoon handle to dry. 

8. They’re also ideal for lid venting

Sometimes you want to leave a pot’s lid slightly ajar when cooking to allow steam to escape or the contents to thicken. However, sometimes adjusting a lid to be ajar just a touch is difficult. What you can do is lay your wooden spoon crosswise on the rim and balance the lid on top. Problem solved! Plus it won’t get too hot when you have to move it.

9. They don’t scratch

Non-wooden spoons like metal spoons are far more likely to scratch and leave marks on your pots, pans, and non-stick cookware. But not wooden spoons!

10. They don’t conduct heat

Compared to a counterpart like a plastic spoon, a metal spoon, or a silicone spoon, wooden utensils don’t conduct heat, so you can use them in any sort of high-heat situation (such as boiling hot water). This also means they won’t alter the cooking temperature (yes, this is a thing). I always turn to my wooden spoon when making jam and the like.

How to Care for Your Wooden Spoon

So, do wooden spoons really harbor bacteria? Well, yes. But if you don’t properly clean your metal or silicone utensils, so do they.

The best method for cleaning wooden spoons is the simplest one. Hand wash them in hot, soapy water and dry them with a clean towel. The dishwasher can cause them to crack or warp and letting them air dry may do the same.

If you like, once in a while, you can massage them with a little olive oil or coconut oil to keep them in great shape. Coconut oil in particular has some antimicrobial activity meaning it can help keep some types of bacteria at bay.

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  1. Great post! I broke my favorite wooden spoon banging it on a metal pot to scare off 4 bears in our yard….well, tried to scare them off, anyway, but they ignored me. I’m still looking for an acceptable replacement spoon. Not all favorite wooden spoons or other favorite kitchen utensils are easy to replace, unfortunately. Consequently, I stock up on the ones that I can, like 12” 3-tine granny forks, for instance. Will do that when I find another favorite wooden spoon, too!

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