When choosing the right dinnerware for your kitchen, many options are available, promising something different; it can be challenging to know where to start.
Dinnerware comes in various materials – Porcelain, stoneware, and earthenware, generally called ceramics. We have chosen to use porcelain to make our dinnerware and will make a case for why you should highly consider our dinnerware for your home.
What are Porcelain, Stoneware, and Earthenware?
Porcelain, stoneware, and earthenware are all types of dinnerware. They each have their benefits and drawbacks, so choosing the right one for your kitchen is essential.
Porcelain is a ceramic fired at very high temperatures between 2381℉ and 2455℉, solidifying its hardness which is superior to other ceramics materials. It is stronger and more durable because it is made of fine particle clay and can be used in the microwave, dishwasher, oven, and freezer. Porcelain dinnerware is usually white or off-white.
Stoneware is a ceramic fired at a high temperature between 2305℉ to 2336℉. It is less delicate than porcelain because it’s made of coarse-grain clay. Stoneware can be used in the microwave and dishwasher but may discolor over time. Stoneware dinnerware is usually brown or gray.
Earthenware is a ceramic fired at a lower temperature than porcelain and stoneware. It is more fragile than the other two types of dinnerware and more likely to chip and crack but has a unique rustic look. Earthenware dinnerware is usually red or orange. Earthenware is also the heaviest type of dinnerware. Earthenware should not be used in the microwave or dishwasher.
What makes ceramics microwave and oven safe
The materials used, especially the glaze, and the absence of any metal details, determine if the ceramics are safe to microwave. Check before putting ceramics into the microwave.
- Earthenware is unsuitable. Always Check the manufacturer’s label on the product. If it’s porcelain, it’s safe; if it’s stoneware, it’s usually safe too.
- All pottery used in the kitchen should have a glaze, not just for cooking in the oven and microwave but also for safeguarding that no chemicals transfer (leach) onto food.
- Any ceramics with metallic or golden trims should not go in the microwave and oven to avoid arcing.
Why is the ceramic absorption rate so important?
Water absorption rate measures how much moisture a specific type of ceramic will absorb on an ongoing basis. Ceramics may crack if the moisture penetration is too high. Unsafe moisture levels are also conducive to trapping germs and bacteria.
How to determine the water absorption rate of your ceramics at home:
- Make sure the item is dry. Place it in a warm nonmoist environment for 5-7 days. Then, measure how much it weighs down to the gram when completely dry.
- Submerge the item in water for 24 hours to soak up all the water it can. Then weigh the item again to find out how much water it absorbs.
- The ideal absorption rate should be below 1%. You can calculate the rate by dividing the weight difference by the dry item’s weight and multiplying this by 100. (Weight Difference / Dry item weight) x 100 = Absorption rate
Safe materials are stoneware and porcelain. Especially porcelain which absorbs only 0 – 1 % of its weight in water. Stoneware is fine, too, as it absorbs about 2 – 5 % of water. This can differ, though. Some clay soaks up more water than other clay.
Why do we choose to use porcelain to make our dinnerware?
Since porcelain is made from fine kaolin clay and fired at high temperatures, it is non-porous, meaning it won’t absorb flavors or odors from food, and is also very strong and durable. The coarseness of stoneware makes it porous.
Porcelain is fired at high temperatures, and its ability to distribute the heat evenly through its body makes it heat resistant and suitable for microwave, oven use, and freezers.
Because of the smooth, hard glazed finish surface, porcelain dinnerware isn’t easily scuffed or marked by silverware, which commonly happens to stoneware because the coarse, hard surface gets marked by silverware or as a result of the contact between stacked dishes and dishwasher racks.
Porcelain is a versatile material that allows us to play and experiment with different colors, shapes, and sizes — making it suitable for any event and occasion.
Due to its fine smooth glassy texture, porcelain is non-stick and easy to clean – With just water and dish soap, you can get grease stains off instantly. It’s dishwasher safe too.
Despite its fragile appearance, porcelain is durable for everyday use. It is one of the strongest and most durable ceramics on the market.
The delicate look of porcelain adds elegance and beauty to the dinnerware.
If you are concerned about the weight of your dinnerware pieces, stoneware is heavier than porcelain since the clay used to make it is coarse. Porcelain dinnerware is generally on the light side because of the fine particle clay used to make it. Earthenware is heavier than stoneware and porcelain.
How do I remove stains and marks from porcelain dinnerware?
You can remove stains and marks by dampening a soft sponge, sprinkling some baking soda on the stain, and scrubbing the area gently to remove the stains and marks. Remember that you should not use a toothbrush or anything too abrasive to clean your porcelain tableware. Avoid detergents with bleach, as they can damage the finish.
Make sure your dinnerware is Non-Toxic: Cadmium and Lead-Free.
Our glazes are tested by an accredited independent international laboratory and meet all FDA standards regarding food contact safety. Our dinnerware has met the strict California Proposition 65 requirements.
Set the table.
Choosing the right dinnerware for your kitchen can be challenging, but hopefully, this article has helped you to understand the differences between porcelain, stoneware, and earthenware.
Set your table with our dinnerware and enrich your dining rituals.
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