The 10 Best Dinnerware Sets

Updated August 29, 2017 by Brett Dvoretz

10 Best Dinnerware Sets
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 46 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. No, it is not appropriate to still be eating off paper plates five years after graduation. Pick up one of these dinnerware sets and start dining in a more civilized fashion. We've included affordable sets good for everyday use as well as some that can provide a place setting for up to eight people, so you can show off your newfound style. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best dinnerware set on Amazon.

10. Rachel Ray Ikat Collection

Style and function describe the Rachel Ray Ikat Collection. It is made from classy-looking stoneware that is able to withstand temperatures of 250 degrees for up to 30 minutes, which makes them suitable for warming food, but not cooking it.
  • hold their heat for a long time
  • modern and casual appearance
  • get scratched very easily
Brand Rachael Ray
Model 58768
Weight 21.5 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

9. BonJour Fruitful Nectar

Always be prepared for gatherings with the BonJour Fruitful Nectar. The dinner plates have an aqua glaze and pure white center that really makes food pop, without making the plate look overly cluttered, while the rest of the pieces are more artfully decorated.
  • springtime nature motif
  • matching tea set is available
  • overall durability is questionable
Brand BonJour
Model 55585
Weight 18 pounds
Rating 3.6 / 5.0

8. Gibson Soho Lounge

The Gibson Soho Lounge is a great set for a family of four who wants something that is nice enough to serve friends at a dinner party, but low-priced enough that you won't cry if your child accidentally breaks one. They come in six color choices.
  • dramatic undertones
  • reactive glaze makes them unique
  • bowls don't stack very well
Brand Gibson
Model 61220.16RM
Weight 25.7 pounds
Rating 3.5 / 5.0

7. Tunisian Sunset

Add a splash of color to your everyday family dining routine with the Tunisian Sunset. Each of this set's 16 pieces is beautifully decorated by hand with highly detailed abstract flowers that are sure to make you smile when you eat off them.
  • large mugs hold a lot
  • pieces are matching but different
  • get very hot in the microwave
Brand Tunisian Sunset
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 3.7 / 5.0

6. Corelle Impressions Watercolors

The Corelle Impressions Watercolors is made in the USA, and constructed of patented, scratch-resistant Vitrelle glass that makes them durable, yet lightweight. Its colorful flower and fruit patterns brighten up almost any kitchen.
  • mostly made from recycled glass
  • patterns won't fade
  • bowl pattern doesn't quite match
Model 1092909
Weight 12.3 pounds
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

5. Gibson Elite Cimarron

The Gibson Elite Cimarron offers an incredibly rustic design with deep, earthy tones that are perfect for desert and country homes, or anybody who just likes warm colors. The tile work around each plate edge features a wax relief treatment, giving it a very natural feel.
  • handcrafted appearance
  • includes dessert plates and bowls
  • dinner plates can hold a large meal
Brand Gibson Elite
Model 92918.16RM
Weight 26.3 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

3. Lenox Butterfly Meadow

While some men may not appreciate the Lenox Butterfly Meadow, you'll certainly impress any female guests, making it a great set for afternoon tea or book club meetings. Each piece depicts an array of butterflies and blooms with a soft, inviting color palette.
  • made from white porcelain
  • freezer and oven-safe
  • available in large and small sets
Brand Lenox
Model 6342794
Weight 22.3 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

2. Corelle Square Splendor

The Corelle Square Splendor is extremely durable, being made from a patented Vitrelle glass that is both scratch and chip-resistant. Add to this the fact that they are microwave and dishwasher-safe and you have the perfect set for homes with kids.
  • good value for the price and quality
  • backed by a three-year warranty
  • available in a range of patterns
Model 1101529
Weight 13.1 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

1. Noritake Crestwood Platinum

The Noritake Crestwood Platinum is a 50-piece porcelain dinnerware set that serves up to eight people, so you can invite all of your friends. Each piece features a platinum-embossed rim that gives it a subtle air of elegance.
  • works with most flatware styles
  • also includes a serving platter
  • good for formal and casual dinners
Brand Noritake
Model 4166-50B
Weight 45.8 pounds
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

Dinnerware: Where Form Meets Function At The Table

The dinnerware in your home is hugely influenced by your sense of style, your culinary preferences, and by the ways you and your family prepare and share a meal. However it's important to be aware that the the dinnerware in a home also influences decor and style, food choices, and the very process of dining.

Whether you choose dinnerware that is elegant and decorative or simple and utilitarian, or you seek a blending of form and function, the plates, bowls, cups, and saucers set upon your table or up there on display in the China cabinet are going to play a major part in your life, so choose them carefully.

Before we discuss the two major categories of dinnerware, which can be divided into that which is informed by aesthetics and that which is informed by use, let's talk briefly about dinnerware in a more general sense.

In order to be considered a complete table setting, a dinnerware set must have at least three pieces: a main plate, a side dish for bread or salad, and a bowl. Most dinnerware sets also have accompanying mugs and saucers, many have additional plates for deserts or specialty items, and comprehensive dinnerware sets also have serving dishes and platters, large serving bowls, salt and pepper shakers, and so forth.

There are dinnerware sets that call to mind a lavish Victorian table and there are those styled to evoke the elegant simplicity of a Southwestern ranch. Careful inspection will reveal that the distinctions of each set have as much to do with shape as they do with color and pattern, though these are the elements you'll most often first identify when admiring dinnerware.

Keep in mind that one style of plate is never inherently better than any other; the circumstances dictate the suitability of a dinnerware set. A thin plate with scalloped edges might look right at home on a table set for a holiday feast, yet that same plate might look painfully out of place on a picnic table at a summer barbecue, for example. And a given dinnerware set may look great in an advertisement, but if it won't look great in your home due to its size, colors, or any other factor, then it's simply the wrong choice.

Dinnerware As Decoration

Decorative dinnerware can serve in two capacities: first, it can be arranged on shelves or in a China cabinet to serve a purely aesthetic function. Elegant dinnerware looks great on display and can help anchor a dining room, a space that is traditionally difficult to decorate.

Likewise dinnerware can serve as a practical decoration when laid out on the table, enhancing the visual appeal of a meal while also simply serving to help people dine. Decorative dinnerware sets have their drawbacks, though, and it's worth considering several of them prior to making a potentially expensive purchase.

The more specific the style of a dinnerware set, the less latitude you will have with the rest of the decor of a room or table. You can't well pair a bunch of dinnerware with a delicate floral motif with a platter of hamburgers or hotdogs any more than you can serve foie gras on a thick, solid colored plate without raising the eyebrows of your discerning guests.

That said, there are many dinnerware sets that manage to look great as decoration without assuming such a specific aesthetic as to be limited in the type of cuisine served upon them or by the decor of the room or house in which they are displayed. In general, the fewer colors included in a dinnerware set, the more versatile it is. Thus you will find many high quality dinnerware sets that are predominately white with simple patterns around the trim in demure colors like pale blue, silver, or black.

A decorative element or two is likewise often acceptable, such as an emblem or pattern at the center of the plate, but when in doubt, avoid dinnerware sets that are fully covered with colors and/or patterns. Or rather avoid them if you are unwilling to buy two complete sets, as that's always the easiest solution to the conundrum of choosing the "right" dinnerware.

Dinnerware For Everyday Use

If you want a set of dinnerware that looks good enough to use for most occasions, including the fancier holiday meal or dinner party event, yet which you won't mind (or fear) using every single day, then simpler is always better. Simpler and stronger, of course.

Most decent dinnerware sets today feature plates, cups, and bowls that are both dishwasher safe and microwave safe. This is because manufacturers know that the average person doesn't want to hand wash their plates, and because microwaving is one of most common ways of heating food. Unless you see a set without these attributes that you just can't live without, don't even consider any dinnerware not rated as such.

Then simply think about it practically: do you eat a salad every night? Then by all means get a set with a dedicated salad plate. But also consider a simpler set without a salad plate but with a bowl, which works just fine for holding salad; after all, it's rather unlikely you'll often need a bowl at the same time as you're using your plates, unless you and your family love soup.

Do you have kids? Then choose a set where all similar items, e.g. the main plates or the mugs, look identical. Some sets have a few different patterns, and are much harder to make do with once a piece or two are broken.

And if you're still having trouble, just stick with plain white dinnerware, which is easy to dress up or down and is always in style.

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Last updated on August 29, 2017 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.

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