Food Safe Wood Finish

Top 4 Food-Safe Wood Finish

4 Best Food-Safe Wood Finishes

Following are the best food-safe wood finishes


It is a surface sealant, natural finish that comes from the Lake bug. You can bet it's safe to consume, they coat the candy in it after all. Shellac is a film-forming finish and offers good protection against moisture. It leaves a glossy finish if applied thick enough and polished.

Drying Oils

Among the most popular drying oils, there is flaxseed oil, tung oil, and hemp oil. These oils all have the property of drying out and leaving a thin protective film when dry. Make sure to apply them in several thin layers and to wipe off the excess with a cloth. Between each coat, do not forget to wait until the previous coat is completely dry (it depends on the oils). Be careful, some oils contain toxic chemicals to speed up the drying time. It is therefore advised to find out about the composition of the oil used.

Food Grade Mineral Oil

It is a non-toxic, non-drying oil that is commonly used on butcher tables and cutting boards. It needs to be reapplied as often as once a month and will become brittle and crack if not maintained, so be sure to keep a bottle on hand.

Coconut Oil

It's a food-safe finish, good for butcher blocks and cutting boards. Make sure you get the "distilled" or "fractionated" variant, which is refined so it doesn't go rancid.

Food Safe Wood Sealer

The following are not usually preferred as a food-safe wood finish.
  • Wax
  • Varnish
  • Polyurethane
  • Lacquer

Food Safe Waterproof Wood Finish

This is the most common wood finish. They are easy to apply and it is fairly straightforward to reapply a new coat as needed. The oiled finish will provide minimal protection of the wood against water and various food contacts; depending on the oil, it also slightly colors the wood with a tint generally tending towards yellow (you can refer to the Gardner index of oil). The oiled finish also has the particularity of leaving a finish that is relatively "permeable" to gas exchange, which allows the wood to absorb and naturally evacuate moisture. The main drawback of oils is their non-resistance to various knives and other impacts of the same kind. On the other hand, it is also what makes the charm of wooden objects worn by time: we obtain a unique, natural, and patinated finish. If you want to keep the object intact, you might as well not use it and leave it in a display case or use conventional ceramic plates.

Food Safe Wood Stain

To protect wood against food and household stains, as well as against scratches and the wear of time, we recommend that you apply an odorless water-based varnish for the interior. The varnish will form a protective film on your wooden product, which will be isolated against stains and protected against wear.

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