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Serveware Buying Guide

You don't need a wait staff to serve guests in style. Buying serving pieces to coordinate with your dinnerware is a smart step in making sure that your table is ready for entertaining your family and friends.  

Types of Serveware

Types of Serveware

For everyday dining as well as holiday parties and family celebrations, the items you use to serve your carefully prepared foods and beverages make entertaining easier -- and make an impression on your guests. Not sure what you need? Start by picturing your dream dinner party: What do you plan to serve and how would you like to present it? Well-chosen serveware can enhance your menu, complement your table setting, and turn any occasion into a festive event.

Beverage Servers

A glass, silver, or stainless-steel water pitcher, placed on an absorbent cork-topped trivet, helps you refill glasses without leaving the table. Guests to your kitchen probably serve themselves from the coffeepot or teakettle, but for dinner parties, a formal silver or silver-plate tea and coffee service -- including matching creamer and sugar bowls -- makes a more elegant statement.

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Personal Creations

Personalized Gift: Mr & Mrs Mason Jar Beverage Dispenser - Brown Label. Mr & Mrs Mason Jar Beverage Dispenser - Brown Label

Personal Creations

Personalized Gift: Mr & Mrs Mason Jar Beverage Dispenser - Navy Label. Mr & Mrs Mason Jar Beverage Dispenser - Navy Label

Improvements

The Vintage Beverage Dispenser is the perfect size to keep in your refrigerator. Use one of the optional stands to raise this beve...rage dispenser for easier dispensing. The Vintage Beverage Dispenser is made of hand-blown bubble glass. The Vintage... read more

Creative Bath

3-gallon beverage dispenser stacks to save space.

Cake and Dessert Stands

Pedestal-base servers of glass, china, or metal elevate cakes, pies, and other baked goods to party prominence. Some are sold with a glass dome for extra glamour. Typically three levels high, tiered and graduated-width serving stands make a charming presentation for cupcakes, pastries, cookies, and candies.

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Camp Home

By Camp Home Stoneware Hand wash Small: 2.75"H, 6.75" diameter Medium: 3"H, 9.5" diameter Large: 3.5"H, 11.25" diameter Imported... read more

Camp Home

By Camp Home Stoneware Hand wash Small: 2.75"H, 6.75" diameter Medium: 3"H, 9.5" diameter Large: 3.5"H, 11.25" diameter Imported... read more

Anthropologie

Set of three Iron Hand wash Small: 4.75"H, 8.25" diameter Medium: 6"H, 13" diameter Large: 7"H, 18.75" diameter Imported

Anthropologie

Bowls: set of three Platter: sold individually Cake stands: sold individually Small: 4.75"H,9.5" diameter Large: 6.5"H, 11.75" d...iameter Earthenware Dishwasher and microwave safe Italy read more

Serving Carts

Pedestal-base servers of glass, china, or metal elevate cakes, pies, and other baked goods to party prominence. Some are sold with a glass dome for extra glamour. Typically three levels high, tiered and graduated-width serving stands make a charming presentation for cupcakes, pastries, cookies, and candies.

Serving Platters

Adaptable serving platters can be used for everything from grilled burgers to Thanksgiving turkey. Medium-diameter round platters, known as chop plates, are handy for roasts; oval platters work well for anything from bread to a whole poached fish. Platter design is just as varied: basic white, gold- or silver-decorated, embossed, or hand-painted.

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Update International

Update International??s 20-oz. au gratin dish (AGO-20) is as elegant as it is useful. Whether you??re making a simple meal featuri...ng potatoes au gratin or a melanzane alla parmigiana, this dish will prove its worth in the kitchen. As au gratins are traditionally served in the same dish they are prepared in, the dish is designed to be as beautiful as it is useful. Featuring mirror-polished stainless steel, this au gratin dish will brighten up any setting from dining in a fine restaurant to an intimate meal at home. read more

Anthropologie

Stoneware Dishwasher safe Pitcher: 63.75 oz 11.5"H, 5.5" diameter Platter: 19"L, 12.5"W Tureen: 9.25"H, 14" diameter Serving Bow...l: 4.5"H, 11.5" diameter Portugal read more

Anthropologie

Bowls: set of three Platter: sold individually Cake stands: sold individually Small: 4.75"H,9.5" diameter Large: 6.5"H, 11.75" d...iameter Earthenware Dishwasher and microwave safe Italy read more

Anthropologie

Stoneware Dishwasher safe Pitcher: 63.75 oz 11.5"H, 5.5" diameter Platter: 19"L, 12.5"W Tureen: 9.25"H, 14" diameter Serving Bow...l: 4.5"H, 11.5" diameter Portugal read more

Serving Trays

The traditional vehicle to pass and serve cocktails, appetizers, and hors d'oeuvres, trays are made in round, square, oval, and rectangular shapes and in materials from casual and durable melamine to formal and elegant sterling silver. Cheese boards are equipped with a wood or marble surface so guests can cut their own portions. Some boards feature glass domes to protect cheese while it comes to room temperature.

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Ralph Lauren
$416.50 $595.00
at Ralph Lauren

Sophisticated serving tray in highly polished silver-plated brass -- a striking statement piece for the well-appointed table. Craf...ted in silver-plated brass, polished to a high gleam. Inset serving area with double-ridge edging and serving handles at each side. 26 L x 11 W x 2 D. Imported. read more

Ralph Lauren
$906.50 $1,295.00
at Ralph Lauren

This sophisticated serving tray is crafted from highly polished silver-plated brass and makes a striking statement piece for your ...table. Inset serving area with double-ridge edging and serving handles at each side. 26 L x 11 W x 2 D. Imported. read more

Ralph Lauren
$416.50 $595.00
at Ralph Lauren

This silver-plated tray features a stunning octagonal silhouette and beautiful lacquered wood handles. Inset serving area. Black l...acquered wood handles at each side. 141/2 L x 13 W. Imported. read more

Personalization Mall

Whether your having an elegant dinner party or casual get together, our MariposaŽ String of Pearls Personalized Oval Serving Tray ...is an elegant table accessory to serve your favorite hors d'oeuvre or desserts.Custom personalize with any initial or name above our delicately etched, swirl design for a touch of class. Makes a great wedding gift, housewarming gift, birthday gift or retirement gift. Pair with our matching wine cozy (sold separately) for a classic dining presentation. Perfectly sized at 12 1/2" L x 8 1/4" H, the perfect appetizer or dessert serving tray. Handcrafted out of Recycled Sandcast Aluminum. Please note there may be subtle markings on the product inherent to handcrafted aluminum. Hand wash, not dishwasher safe. Presented in a beautiful box for a lovely presentation. MariposaŽ maintains a commitment to sustainability with all of their products. Handcrafted in Mexico of 100% recycled materials, they ensure every step of the manufacturing process is ecologically sound and designed to minimize waste. read more

Serving Bowls

Varied and versatile bowls are tabletop necessities for serving family-style salads, vegetables, pastas, and desserts. Large, lidded soup tureens sport a notched rim to hold a serving ladle. Woven metal or natural-fiber baskets are ideal for bread, rolls, and fruit.

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Ralph Lauren
$556.50 $795.00
at Ralph Lauren

The Celeste Trifle Bowl is crafted from gleaming, hand-cut lead crystal and features a beveled silhouette with an Art Deco-inspire...d octagonal base. 81/2 diameter. 8 height. This item is 24% lead crystal. Hand wash. Imported. Prop 65: Consuming food or beverages that have been kept or served in lead crystal products or handling products made of lead crystal will expose you to lead, a chemical known to the state of California to c read more

Ralph Lauren
$486.50 $695.00
at Ralph Lauren

This retro shallow bowl is crafted from gleaming handblown lead crystal and accented with hand-cut auto machinery-inspired grooves... at the base. Crafted in Hungary at the same atelier that makes some of the finest crystal in the world. 121/4 diameter. 4 height. This item is 24% lead crystal. Hand wash. Imported. Prop 65: Consuming food or beverages that have been kept or served in lead crystal products or handling products read more

Ralph Lauren
$105.00 $150.00
at Ralph Lauren

Designed with a curved silhouette inspired by the shape of vintage trophies, our Declan Footed Bowl is crafted from gleaming handb...lown glass by skilled artisans in Poland. Can be used as a centerpiece or serving bowl. Cylindrical steam with a rounded base. 111/2 H x 11 D. Hand wash. Imported. read more

Ralph Lauren
$31.50 $45.00
at Ralph Lauren

Crafted from white bone china, the Anthony Cereal Bowl features a sharply defined border inspired by the clean lines of our iconic... Black Label Anthony tuxedo. 5 diameter. Dishwasher safe. Imported. read more

Accessories

Supporting players on the serveware stage include an easy-to-pour gravy boat (useful for sauces, too), one or more butter dishes, lazy Susans, and salt cellars or salt-and-pepper shaker sets.

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Wine Enthusiast

Lazy Susans - Sleek and elegant design brought to the center of your table top. This glass lazy suan created from American Made te...mpered glass permanently bonded to metal rings mounted on a smooth ball bearing movement. 24' Model Dimensions: 1- 1/2' H... read more

Wine Enthusiast

Lazy Susans - Sleek and elegant design brought to the center of your table top. This glass lazy suan created from American Made te...mpered glass permanently bonded to metal rings mounted on a smooth ball bearing movement. Personalize up to 20 Characters... read more

Westminster

"This teak Lazy Susan will meet the challenge of a large dining table and keep condiments or refreshments within reach. This rich,... elegant, well balanced, teak Lazy Susan has a micro-smooth finish and a stainless steel ball bearing mechanism for ease... read more

Westminster

"Our 24 inch Lazy Susan will complement your picnic table or any of our outdoor dining tables. No more spills due to reaching, no ...more waiting for someone to respond to your request to pass a condiment, just add a beautiful teak Lazy Susan to your... read more

Product Features

Product Features

There are so many options that selecting serveware can feel as complicated as choosing dinnerware. Each type of serveware comes in many sizes, shapes, and materials. Compare differences between your favorite styles and patterns to determine which items best fit your needs.

Helpful Design Features

Well-made serveware offers useful design elements. Built-in handles make it easier to hold heavy bowls; angled sides or recessed edges capture natural juices on meat platters; and double-wall pitcher construction minimizes condensation from iced beverages.

Oven-to-Table Function

Some glass, ceramic, and cast-iron cookware is attractive enough to go from the oven or stovetop directly to the dining table. Supplement these pieces with a few lidded items -- vegetable bowls, a tureen, a gravy boat -- that will keep food warm longer. Use a decorative trivet beneath hot dishes to protect your table from scorching.

Purchase Considerations

Purchase Considerations

Except for a few packaged hostess sets, serveware isn't sold in groups like your dinnerware service for eight. What you get is up to you; let what you cook and how you entertain determine the serveware items you need. If your budget allows, go beyond the basics to buy additional pieces for casual and formal dining.

Material

What your serveware is made from can be just as important as its size and shape. Ceramic, stone, silver or silver plate, wood, glass, melamine, and more have their pros and cons in terms of style, price, and durability. Choosing companion pieces makes a visually cohesive tablescape, but not all serveware items need to match.

Compatible Style

You're in luck: Many dinnerware manufacturers offer coordinating serveware as open stock. You can buy what you need piece by piece as your entertaining needs evolve. It's also OK to express your personal style by shopping outside the set, selecting items that complement or accent your dinnerware's color and pattern, or choosing neutral white or glass pieces that work with what you have as well as what you might acquire.

Menu-Appropriate

Even though many serveware items can take on multiple roles, you may want specialized pieces to serve the dishes your family and guests enjoy most often. The meat-and-potatoes cook will need platters and deep bowls. Fans of sushi or charcuterie will appreciate lazy Susans, cheese boards, pedestal servers, and dipping bowls. Formal afternoon teas require a gleaming tea service and tiered stands for cupcakes and petit fours.

Storage and Care

Unless you entertain regularly, some serveware pieces will only be used for holidays and special events. Think carefully about where you'll store specialty items such as fragile punch bowls, a swan-shape tureen, or wire pizza stands. Silver and silver-plate coffee and tea services look impressive to guests, but will you maintain their shine? Only you can decide which pieces are must-haves and which are tricky to store and maintain.

Buffet Choices

If your entertaining style favors buffet events, your serveware needs are different from those for sit-down dinner parties. To start, your serveware can be more colorful and casual in style. Stock up on lightweight platters, shallow bowls, wine buckets, a coffee urn, chips-and-salsa servers, pickle and relish dishes, and electric serving helpers such as warming trays, slow cookers, and chafing dishes.

Dining on sale
Ralph Lauren
$416.50 $595.00
at Ralph Lauren

Sophisticated serving tray in highly polished silver-plated brass -- a striking statement piece for the well-appointed table. Craf...ted in silver-plated brass, polished to a high gleam. Inset serving area with double-ridge edging and serving handles at each side. 26 L x 11 W x 2 D. Imported. read more

Ralph Lauren Home Small Carrigan Serving Tray - Silver - S
Ralph Lauren
$906.50 $1,295.00
at Ralph Lauren

This sophisticated serving tray is crafted from highly polished silver-plated brass and makes a striking statement piece for your ...table. Inset serving area with double-ridge edging and serving handles at each side. 26 L x 11 W x 2 D. Imported. read more

Ralph Lauren Home Large Carrigan Serving Tray - Silver - L
Ralph Lauren
$416.50 $595.00
at Ralph Lauren

This silver-plated tray features a stunning octagonal silhouette and beautiful lacquered wood handles. Inset serving area. Black l...acquered wood handles at each side. 141/2 L x 13 W. Imported. read more

Ralph Lauren Home Barnet Serving Tray
Ballard Designs
$199.00 $499.00
at Ballard Designs

Natural finish. Naturally resistant to decay & damaging insects. Assembly required. Crafted of solid teak, our Peyton Serving Cart... is designed to take the party to the party. Two drawers hold serving supplies. Lower slatted shelf catches everything... read more

Peyton Serving Cart - Ballard Designs
Sears
$110.14 $174.99
at Sears

Add an unparalleled appeal to you bar area with this modern styled bar cart. It features clean edges, straight legs, and a rich so...lid-wood white finish that add a bold element to your area. Its black casters make it easy to move the cart from room to room or serve your guests! Three spacious shelves offer plenty of space, ideal for making drinks and storing your bar accessoires, making this piece appropriate for both casual and formal dining occasions. read more

Monarch Specialties White Bar Cart With A Serving Tray On Castors
Sears
$109.99 $192.99
at Sears

Add an unparalleled appeal to you bar area with this modern styled bar cart. It features clean edges, straight legs, and a rich so...lid-wood cappuccino finish that add a bold element to your area. Its black casters make it easy to move the cart from room to room or serve your guests! Three spacious shelves and a removable serving tray offer plenty of space, ideal for making drinks and storing your bar accessoires, making this piece appropriate for both casual and formal dining occasions. read more

Monarch Specialties Cappuccino Bar Cart With A Serving Tray On Castors Brown
Teavana
$34.97 $49.95
at Teavana

Japanese lacquer ware is famous for its aesthetic and lustrous shine. This large tray will carry your teapot along with many tea c...ups. It also has side handles for easy portability of any type of tea service. Serving tray also fits well on ottomans. Free Shipping on orders over $50. read more

Teavana Black Lacquer Serving Tray
Wayfair Supply
$244.99 $499.99
at Wayfair Supply

Luxor TC111 TC1113 shelf Plastic Service CartBlack cart with: Features: -Two tub shelf utility cart with 4 casters, two with lock...ing brake.-Shelf clearance: 25.-3 Shelf Plastic Service Cart.-Product Type: Service cart.-Color: Black.-Locking: Yes.Dimensions: -32W x 24D x 37-1/2H.-2-3/4 deep tubs.-Weight: 48 lbs.-Overall Height - Top to Bottom: 25.5.-Overall Width - Side to Side: 16.5.-Overall Depth - Front to Back: 36.-Overall Product Weight: 70.Warranty: -30 day warranty on material and workmanship. read more

Luxor Cart Serv Plas 3Tub Black 24"D X 32"W TC111
cutleryandmore.com

The Le Creuset Cake Stand fits cakes baked in standard-size pans. Homemade cakes are display-worthy with this cake stand, which of...fers all the durability and performance of Le Creuset stoneware. At nearly 12 inches in diameter. Plus, the sturdy exterior enamel won't be damaged by knives. read more

Le Creuset Stoneware Pink Cake Stand
Belk
$40.00 $100.00
at Belk

Wilton Bakeware Cupcakes n More 38 Count Cupcake Stand. The look is fresh and fun, featuring bold silver-finished wire spirals to ...securely hold each cupcake. Easy to assemble! Just stack each layer of cupcakes onto the locking center rod. Non-toxic, silver-finished metal has a durable non-chip finish. Collapsible design Stores easily and safely. Holds 38 cupcakes. read more

Wilton Bakeware  Cupcakes n More 38 Count Cupcake Stand
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