Wooden Spoons

Wooden spoons, the history, the making of and the use of wooden spoons.

The word spoon derives from an ancient word meaning a chip of wood or horn carved from a larger piece. Wooden spoons were easy to carve and thus inexpensive, making them common throughout history.

The Anglo Saxons were great workers of wood, as were the Vikings, and both these groups of settlers to the British Isles produced wooden spoons for domestic uses. Wooden eating and cooking implements were used by both rich and poor for nearly all of the first century of American colonisation.

The harder the wood the better the use for kitchen work (hardwoods have tighter pores so food does not lodge in it). Some common hardwoods include: alder, apple, ash, birth, cherry, chestnut, mahogany, maple, oak, poplar, teak and walnut.

Wood is sturdy but not harsh, lasts for years or even decades, and is one of the most versatile materials out of which a kitchen utensil can be crafted.

Spoons predate forks by thousands of years. The earliest known versions were simply small pieces of wood used to help scoop up foods not quite liquid enough to drink directly from a bowl