The 11 Best Dinnerware Sets of 2023 | Reviews by Wirecutter

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The 11 Best Dinnerware Sets of 2023 | Reviews by Wirecutter

We've added eight new picks in a variety of materials, including stoneware, porcelain, bone china, and glass, plus a new section on small potters.

A good set of dinnerware not only sets the stage for memorable meals but also offers you an opportunity to express your personal style. A great set will bring a touch of class to any dinner table and remain in fashion for years, all while withstanding the rigors of daily use.

But with endless styles and patterns to choose from, it can feel like an impossible decision to make. We’ve done most of the legwork for you. After researching more than 300 collections and evaluating 50 sets since 2016, we have recommendations for our favorite porcelain, stoneware, bone china, and glass dinnerware. Our picks range in weight, design, and price, so you can find the best set for your lifestyle and budget.

If none of our picks appeal to you and you’d rather shop around, see Other good dinnerware sets, our sections on small pottery studios and adaptive dinnerware, or our section on fine china in our dinnerware buying guide.

After 200 hours of research, we’ve created a buying guide to help you find a set of dinnerware you’ll love.

Choosing dinnerware is a personal decision. If you’re a college student, or if you’ve just moved into your first apartment, you may want a durable set that’s no-frills and affordable. Or maybe you need only a handful of extra plates for a holiday gathering. Others, who are upgrading their outdated dinnerware, setting up their first home, or filling out their wedding registry, may be willing to spend a bit more. Regardless of your situation, we have an array of timeless, well-made dinnerware options, across a wide range of prices, that are versatile enough to work for most occasions.

These handmade mid-century dishes have a timeless design that will never go out of style.

The Heath Ceramics Rim Line dinnerware set is an enduring classic—it’s just as timeless today as it was when it was designed by Edith Heath in 1960. Made by a small team, this handcrafted stoneware feels warm and homey but retains a refined quality. The unglazed stoneware rims are a key component of this collection’s earthy signature look. One tester said, “Each piece feels like an object of art.” Nearly all of our testers gushed over the colors and both the matte and shiny glazes of the Rim Line. We also like that this dinnerware looks hardy and substantial but is surprisingly thin, which makes it feel more polished. Even the underside of each plate and bowl is glazed (except for the foot, or the unglazed ring on the bottom of pottery), which adds to the overall quality.

We have had various Heath pieces in the Wirecutter test kitchen since 2019, and we haven’t chipped or broken a single one. (Heath offers a one-year warranty on its dinnerware, should you encounter any manufacturing issues.) We appreciate that the various glazes in Heath’s collection lend themselves to mixing and matching to create an eclectic yet cohesive look. In particular, the Coupe Line, Heath’s first dinnerware line, introduced in 1948, is more streamlined and is fully glazed except for a thin area along the rim—the two collections meld beautifully, so don’t be afraid to combine pieces.

Heath dinnerware pieces are expensive, but we don’t think you need to own a full set to enjoy them—single pieces from these collections could look great incorporated into other stoneware sets, as well. As Margaret Carney, PhD, ceramic art historian and the founding director and curator of the International Museum of Dinnerware Design, told us, “The fact that Heath’s legacy is as old as it is and that they’re still basically creating the same forms and glazes like Edith Heath did is remarkable.” Heath dinnerware has even been used by restaurants, including Alice Waters’s Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California.

Though the Rim Line is microwave and dishwasher safe, Heath recommends using gentle, environmentally friendly detergents on its dinnerware. The unglazed rim of the Rim Line leaves the stoneware susceptible to staining (though some people may like a bit of patina). Sometimes even a dishwasher can’t remove stubborn stains, such as oil or coffee, from the exposed rims, as we learned in our tests. But you can scrub them off with a Scotch Brite sponge and a bit of dish soap or baking soda mixed with water. Heath also has instructions for “seasoning” the rims so that they don’t show stains as easily. If this sounds like too much hassle, consider getting the Coupe Line instead, which has much thinner exposed rims, or the Chez Panisse Line, which is completely glazed.

Several testers said that the Rim Line dinner plates were a bit big and heavy (at about 2.44 pounds each, they’re the heaviest we recommend). Just remember: Even if the weight of one plate doesn’t bother you, the weight of a whole stack might.

Since Heath Ceramics is a smaller-scale pottery studio, we’ve noticed that certain pieces occasionally go in and out of stock. Keep in mind that you may have to wait for some time before inventory is replenished.

You may also like: East Fork Pottery, Jono Pandolfi Coupe Collection, Kinto Porcelain CLK-151 Collection

These handmade stoneware dishes are similar to Heath dinnerware but are a little thicker, not as heavy, and finished with a speckled glaze.

If you like Heath’s collection, East Fork, founded in 2009, offers a similar handmade aesthetic and earthy color palette. Like Heath’s dinnerware, East Fork’s collection is handmade by a team of potters and features a dark clay body that’s exposed around the rim of each piece. East Fork's clay body is less porous than many other stoneware manufacturers, which protects the exposed rims from staining and gives them a slight sheen (in contrast to Heath’s unglazed rims, which develop a patina over time). Testers with big hands liked the large 12-ounce mug and its wide handle, though others found it a little clunky and preferred a thinner handle; one tester affectionately called it “a Wallace and Gromit mug.” (The company also makes a smaller, 8-ounce mug and a 3-ounce cup.) Many testers liked the thickness of the East Fork dinnerware because it felt hardy—it’s also the second-heaviest set we recommend after the Heath dinnerware. Other testers appreciated that all of the rims match in this set, unlike the Kinto and Bennington Potters dinnerware we recommend, which have different rim styles within the same collection.

Clearly, the East Fork set was thoughtfully designed, as the underside of each piece is evenly glazed.

Many of our testers said that the Everyday Bowls in this dinnerware collection were too shallow, especially for eating cereal, as milk would be prone to sloshing over the low rim. But East Fork includes slightly deeper soup bowls in its Potter’s Dinner Set and also sells those bowls as open stock.

A few testers disliked the speckled glaze and said it would start to look dated with time in comparison with the sparse speckled glaze of the Kinto Porcelain CLK-151 Collection, which we also recommend. We noticed an imperfection in the glaze inside the bottom of the mug (what appeared to be a very large speckle), but little imperfections like those are what make each piece of handmade dinnerware unique.

You may also like: Heath Rim Line, Jono Pandolfi Coupe Collection, Kinto Porcelain CLK-151 Collection

This colorful, fully glazed stoneware is highly durable—it’s dishwasher, microwave, freezer, and oven safe.

Bennington Potters Classic Dinnerware, which was introduced in the 1960s, has a homey, retro style that appealed to many of our testers. Bennington Potters was founded by David Gil in 1948 (the same year as Heath) and continues to make its pieces in Bennington, Vermont. It’s a small operation—according to the representative we spoke to, roughly 10 potters make the ceramics, and some have been doing so for over 40 years. The Classic Dinnerware line is the only stoneware set we tested that’s fully glazed on the serving surface without any of the clay body exposed. The underside of each plate is unglazed, but it’s nicely finished and smooth, with Bennington Potters’s lovely signature back stamp pressed into the clay. Though the undersides on these pieces didn’t stain in our tests, they could be prone to scuffs over time (as we’ve seen on some vintage Bennington Potters pieces we have in our test kitchen), but those marks wouldn’t be visible while you’re serving and eating. The Classic Dinnerware line has its own unique look that doesn’t seem to emulate the appearance of other potters’ collections or other styles. As one tester said, “The shape of this dinnerware marches to the beat of its own drum."

Nearly all of our testers loved the slanted rims of the plates in this set (which are somewhat similar to the Iittala Teema plates, which we also recommend). Though the Medium Basic Bowl was a touch narrow for us to comfortably eat cereal, we’re still fans of its deep, nicely rounded shape. The slightly matte glaze on the pieces we tested was impressively even and smooth. We like that this dinnerware collection comes in 10 different colors, including several splatterware-style options. The Tankard Mug was the most polarizing piece in this collection—some people loved it, affectionately calling it a “hobbit mug,” while others found the narrow opening impractical because it would hit the bridge of their nose and require a bottle brush for cleaning. Testers who had bigger hands or were partial to large mugs preferred the oversize American Classic Mug. Bennington Potters also sells many other styles of mugs, tumblers, and teacups and saucers, all as open stock. Bennington Potters dinnerware is also dishwasher, microwave, freezer, and oven safe (up to 400 °F).

One tester noted that it could be difficult to slurp the last bit of soup or noodles out of the Rimmed Soup/Pasta Bowl due to its wide rim (though the narrower Medium Basic Bowl would be fine for this purpose). Some testers also found the colors too saturated and “very ’70s,” preferring the more neutral tones of the Jono Pandolfi Coupe Collection. Other testers said that the rounded lip of the soup bowl and the Tankard Mug and American Classic Mug made them look as if they were from a different set than the plates, which lack this design detail.

You may also like: Iittala Teema Collection

These sturdy dishes are earthy and elegant, with some heft. They were originally designed for restaurant use, so they’re quite durable.

Jono Pandolfi The Coupe Collection is thicker and heftier than any of our other stoneware picks. The clay, sourced from the northeastern US, gives this set a warm and homey feel, but the rounded, smooth edges of each piece make it clean and modern. These dishes were designed by Jono Pandolfi in 2012 for the opening of the NoMad Hotel in New York City, so they were made to withstand the unforgiving rigors of the service industry. Today, you can find Jono Pandolfi dinnerware at many restaurants across the country.

The Coupe Collection is more rustic than the Kinto and East Fork sets we recommend. Each piece is expertly glazed with no visible flaws, and the overall design is straightforward and practical. Many testers especially loved the dark brown clay body of this collection because it clearly looked like it was “from the earth.” If you find it too dark, the Coupe Collection is also available in a lighter clay body. The Coupe Entree Plate and Coupe Salad Plate have a sloped shape (hence the name of the collection) that consists of a slight curve and a thin rim. The Coupe Alaska Bowl has a nice shape and is suitable for a variety of food, while the rimless plates are wide and accommodating. We also appreciate the Coupe 7-Piece Place Setting’s inclusion of a coffee cup that can double as a teacup if you purchase the corresponding saucer—a clever space-saving design.

When we toured Pandolfi’s studio in 2019, he showed us how resilient his dinnerware was by throwing a bowl at a stack of dishes—not a single piece broke. And you won’t have to treat this collection like precious treasure; we’ve been using several pieces from the Coupe Collection in the Wirecutter test kitchen since 2019, and we haven’t chipped or broken any. Several Wirecutter staffers also own various pieces from Jono Pandolfi at home and haven’t experienced any issues. According to the maker, the Coupe Collection is oven safe for short periods of time at low temperatures (200 degrees Fahrenheit or below). It’s also dishwasher and microwave safe.

The unglazed areas of the pieces in the Coupe Collection have a slightly rougher texture than those of our other picks, though nowhere near as rough as on the Hasami dinnerware we tested. That said, if you have a delicate tabletop that scratches easily, you may want to use placemats or a tablecloth with this set. Since the dinnerware is on the heavier side, carrying a stack of dishes may be cumbersome. Because the plates have a slightly concave shape, sauces may pool at the center. Some testers found the coffee cup unbalanced and heavy, and for them it put unnecessary strain on the wrist.

As on the Heath set we recommend, the unglazed areas of the Coupe Collection stained slightly in our tests. But we were able to remove the discoloration (from vegetable oil, coffee, and red wine) with a Scotch Brite sponge and dish soap.

You may also like: Heath Ceramics Coupe Line, East Fork Pottery, Kinto Porcelain CLK-151 Collection

Unlike our other stoneware picks, this elegant collection has a white clay body, a glossy glaze, and a soft color palette.

The Jars Cantine Collection, introduced in 2012, is still handmade in the same French village where the company was founded in 1857, and the dedication to quality is evident in this dinnerware collection. This set was a unanimous favorite in our testing, primarily thanks to its pleasing muted pastel hues and its elegant glossy glaze. Unlike most of the other stoneware sets we recommend, which have earthier tones, the Cantine Collection has a white clay body that’s more akin to porcelain. One tester, struck by the glazing of this dinnerware, said, “I’m loving the experience of this set; the colors are very soothing.” Since each piece is sold as open stock, this collection lends itself to mixing and matching colors.

We like the angled lip on the dinner plates—it’s a subtle detail that adds an interesting element to an otherwise simple design. Because the 9.625-inch salad plate and 10.625-inch dinner plate are similar in size, we recommend getting the salad plates instead if you prefer smaller dinner plates. We also like the generously rounded cereal bowl, which would be ideal for soup, rice, or ice cream; some testers said it was a hair too small, but overall its shape and size should be sufficient for a variety of uses. Multiple testers said the soup bowl, which is wide and has a flat bottom and straight sides, looked too much like a dog bowl. Others, however, liked the design because it added a modern touch to the set and could double as a small serving bowl. We think it’s a great shape for eating pasta and salads, too. And the bowl’s high sides may make it easier for some people with mobility issues to slide food onto a fork. The Cantine Collection is both dishwasher and microwave safe.

Sur la Table carries the basic pieces from this collection, and Saks Fifth Avenue offers a few more items. But the Jars website has the largest array of serving options, including pitchers, vases, bowls, tumblers, and delightful little egg cups.

Some testers expressed concern over the unglazed area on the bottom of the cereal bowl and pasta bowl, since it can be prone to scuffs and stains. Just know that these pieces may take a little extra work to keep clean (though the unglazed area of the Jars bowl didn’t stain in any of our tests). We think a certain amount of patina is to be expected with this type of dinnerware. We also noticed a slight imperfection in the glaze of the cereal bowl, but since that was an indication of the handmade nature of the piece, we didn’t consider it a dealbreaker. Some testers with larger hands reported that the mug handle was too small to hold comfortably, but most testers liked its overall shape and design.

You may also like: Kinto Porcelain CLK-151 Collection

We recommend this set if you don’t want to overthink your purchase. It has a classic design and offers great quality for the price.

Our testers liked the Crate and Barrel Aspen Rimmed Dinnerware for its clean lines and simple design. Introduced in 2005, it retains a timeless quality. Remarkably, the collection isn’t plagued by the imperfections of most dinnerware in this price range, such as wonky plate rims, drippy glaze, and pitting. Although we spotted some very minor inconsistencies on the surface of the glaze, this set’s quality far exceeds its low price. One of our testers remarked that the Aspen line was “a really nice set with even glazing and decent heft.”

The Aspen dinner plates have a pleasant medium weight that falls in between that of the Mikasa Delray and Iittala Teema dinner plates, two of our other porcelain picks. These plates’ slightly angled rims make them easy to hold and help keep food from spilling over the edge. The plates also stack surprisingly evenly, which is uncommon for such low-cost dinnerware. Many of our testers liked the Aspen set’s wide cereal bowls because they also seemed to work well for salad and pasta. The mugs are narrower and taller than your run-of-the-mill mug, which makes them a bit more elegant, and the set also offers a flat-bottomed teacup and saucer. Some testers liked the wider handle on the Aspen teacup more than the thin, dainty handles on the teacups in the Mikasa Lucerne White and Wedgwood White sets. Though one tester noted that the flat-bottomed, straight-sided teacup reminded them of something they might see on an airplane, they didn’t dislike it.

We’ve been using this dinnerware since 2019 in the staff kitchen at the Wirecutter office, where it gets piled up daily in bus tubs. It has held up very well, with no noticeable chipping, despite being in a busy workplace setting. According to Crate and Barrel, the Aspen dinnerware is also “warm-oven safe.”

The Aspen set has some minor inconsistencies on the surface of the glaze, but you can detect these only when you hold the pieces up to the light. Our testers weren’t bothered by these especially minor flaws. Although the Aspen set is a slightly bluer white than our other picks, we don’t think that’s a problem unless you plan to use it next to warmer white bone china serving pieces.

We wish the soup bowl were a little deeper and had more of a rounded bottom. To our testers it felt a bit shallow for eating soup, but this wasn’t a dealbreaker for us since buying the larger cereal bowl is an option.

You may also like: Iittala Teema Collection, Mikasa Delray Collection

These sleek dishes have an appealing angular design, and the high rims on the plates may make it easier for people with certain disabilities to eat.

The Iittala Teema Collection, created by Finnish designer Kaj Franck in 1952, has been a mid-century classic for decades. According to MoMA, “His products remain among the most successful in the history of modern design, because they synthesize both utility and aesthetics with the utmost refinement and continue to look as contemporary today as they did when first introduced.” The pieces in the Iittala Teema Collection are based on basic shapes—a circle, a square, and a rectangle—giving this set a cohesive feel.

Though we tested the white version of the Iittala Teema Collection, it’s available in several other colors, too. And since it’s sold as open stock, you can mix and match tones to create your own aesthetic. The white version of this set stood out in our lineup thanks to its warm, creamy color—a defining characteristic of vitro porcelain. The weight of each piece is balanced, and the set has a beautiful glassy appearance. Unlike some collections we tested, the Teema set feels refined but still durable enough for everyday use, much like the Mikasa Delray dinnerware, which we also recommend. We like how the saucer doesn’t have an indentation for the foot of the mug or teacup, which makes it easier to slide your beverage to the side so that you have more room to place a spoon or a cookie. Since the saucer lacks an indentation, it can also double as a bread and butter plate (though bread and butter plates are also available, included in the five-piece place setting or sold separately). Several testers liked the size of the mugs and found them comfortable to hold. The high rims on the plates are attractive but functional—they keep salad greens from wandering off the plate. This feature also makes the plates more adaptive, since the rims can make it easier for people with certain mobility limitations to push food onto a fork.

The Teema collection is dishwasher, microwave (low heat only), and freezer safe (but not for liquids). According to the manufacturer, it’s also oven safe up to approximately 482 °F, though the company recommends that the bottom of the dish be completely covered with liquid or food throughout the heating process and be at least 4 inches from the heating element.

Some testers were opposed to flat-bottomed bowls (since you have to tilt them to spoon up the last bit of soup or cereal), but they still appreciated these bowls’ unusual design. Also, the plates may not fit well in some dishwashers due to their high angled rims.

You may also like: Crate and Barrel Aspen Rimmed Dinnerware, Kinto Porcelain CLK-151 Collection

Get this set if you’re looking for vibrant, moderately priced dinnerware that has a bit of heft and invites mixing and matching.

Fiesta dinnerware, an American Art Deco classic that was designed by Frederick Hurten Rhead for the Homer Laughlin China Company, has remained largely the same since it was introduced in 1936. The Fiesta set was probably the most polarizing set of dinnerware we tested because of its saturated colors, its thickness, and the circular ridges around the perimeter of each piece—as one tester noted, “this is a look.” Nevertheless, it may be just what you’re looking for if you prefer heavier, thicker pieces and larger plates that are available in a full spectrum of colors (the company offers new colors annually). Even Andy Warhol was a fan.

Some of our testers found the Fiesta dinnerware charming and nostalgic because it reminded them of something they’d see in a diner. Others were turned off, saying it was too vibrant and chaotic to have in their home. But nearly all of our testers said it seemed well made and sturdy. Fiesta dinnerware has some heft, but the plates aren’t as heavy as those in the Heath and East Fork sets, and they’re not as cumbersome as some stoneware options we tested. The pieces still feel balanced and comfortable to hold.

One Wirecutter staffer has several family members who own Fiesta dinnerware; some have newer pieces, while others have dishes that span decades, and none of it has chipped or crazed. Fiesta dinnerware comes with a five-year chip-replacement warranty (PDF), and it’s dishwasher, microwave, freezer, and oven safe (up to 350 °F).

The Fiesta dinnerware had the most saturated colors of the dinnerware sets we tested, which was a turnoff for those testers who preferred subtler, muted tones. Margaret Carney, PhD, a ceramic art historian and the founding director and curator of the International Museum of Dinnerware Design, told us it’s important to think about how food will look on certain colored plates. We think that’s good advice, especially since Fiesta offers so many options. As one tester said, “The purple color would be very odd for me to eat off of.”

Some testers weren’t fond of the flat-bottomed bowls because you have to tilt them to reach the last bit of soup or cereal with a spoon, like those in the Iittala Teema Collection, which we also recommend. However, the flat bottoms and high sides may be helpful for some people with mobility limitations, as they can aid in pushing food onto a fork. The bowls also stack well for storage. If you prefer rounded bowls, Fiesta has several rounded options to choose from.

You may also like: Bauer Pottery, Felt+Fat

We recommend this set if you like the look of rustic dinnerware but also want something modern and refined.

The Kinto Porcelain CLK-151 Collection was a crowd favorite in our testing: Not only was its soft color palette appealing, but we also loved the slightly speckled brown wash brushed along the rims of the plates and mug. Many of our testers preferred the look of this subtle, seemingly organic detail over the more pronounced speckles on the East Fork dinnerware glaze. One tester said, “This set is very refined but still has a hand-thrown look to it, which I like.” The plates are flat and have a thin angled rim; if you like lots of eating surface on your plates, the thin rims of this set may appeal to you. The 7-inch Nori Bowl is especially versatile because it’s tall and deep enough for cereal, soup, or salads, while the 5-inch Nori Bowl is an ideal size for a helping of rice or ice cream. The 14-ounce Large Mug feels like a modern interpretation of the classic Heath Rim Line mug, though this mug’s handle is smaller and more angular in shape.

According to Kinto, the CLK-151 collection was introduced in 2015, and the sandstone porcelain used to make its dinnerware is unique to the Hasami region of Japan. We like the fine particles visible in the clay, which give it an earthy look, but we also appreciate that the exposed areas of the body are beautifully finished and especially smooth to the touch. We wouldn’t worry about the underside of the CLK-151 set scratching a table surface as we would with the Hasami dinnerware we tested, which felt like fine sandpaper. Also, because the exposed clay body is sealed in a nearly imperceptibly clear glaze, the plates didn’t stain in our tests.

Though the CLK-151 dinnerware is dishwasher and microwave safe, the maker does not recommend overheating pieces in the microwave or heating the dinnerware without food or liquids.

Several testers said that the CLK-151 bowls and plates looked as if they were from two different collections, since the edges of the plate rims showed the clay body and the bowl rims did not. Others thought that the particularly flat plates looked too much like serving trays, and they worried that salad greens or other food could easily spill over the thin, low rims. The scant rims also force you to put your thumb on the eating surface of the plate when carrying it to the table. Some testers said that the handle on the mug was too small and impractical, though others loved the design.

The 11 Best Dinnerware Sets of 2023 | Reviews by Wirecutter

Picnic Cutlery Set You may also like: Heath Rim Line, East Fork Pottery, Jono Pandolfi Coupe Collection