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22 Different Types of Bowls

A collage of different types of bowls.

Bowl food have made headlines as recently as the royal wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Their wedding breakfast was a stand-up affair punctuated by a serving of the trendy bowl food.

While the bowl was the primary food vessel for many cuisines, it only became widely accepted in the U.S. around 2016. The rise of bowl-eating produced a raft of cookbooks and new fast-casual chains serving bowl food such as Chipotle, Dig Inn, Subway, Sweet Green, and Tender Greens.

Eating on a bowl can also be beneficial for us. According to a study, the weight and the appearance of a full bowl encourage us to eat less because we perceive that the food is more substantial than it actually is.

The food becomes more aromatic than when on a plate and even the mere act of holding a bowl and feeling the warmth of the hot dish makes us feel like the world is a better place.

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It’s easier to prepare food in a bowl and makes eating those greens and whole grains more appealing.

A healthy dish made up of layers of grains, spiralized veggies, topped with grilled chicken, then sprinkled with herbs and finished with a sauce are compacted together in the concave vessel.

It also helps that bowls are naturally photogenic and, therefore, Instagrammable.

Related: Types of Dishware | Types of Tools for Eating Seafood | Types of Serving Trays | Types of Forks | Types of Spoons | Types of Silverware | Types of Vases

Different Types of Bowls

Below you will find:

  • All types of bowls
  • What bowls are made of
  • Bowl materials
  • Bowl uses and functions
  • Names of bowls
  • Bowl pictures and examples

Glass Bowls

Pyrex Smart Essentials 3-Piece Prepware Mixing Bowl Set, 1-Qt, 1.5-Qt ,and 2.5-Qt Glass Mixing Bowls, Dishwasher, Microwave and Freezer Safe

Glass bowls are definitely among the most common bowls that you will see in people’s homes. These types of bowls are great for just about any purpose.

They are easy to clean, plus you will be able to use them in both your microwave and your dishwasher without worrying. Most people are going to own at least a few glass bowls because of their overall convenience and prevalence in the market.

Some glass bowls can be quite fetching as well. You will find many glass bowl designs that are eye-catching and will look amazing on your dinner table.

Glass is beautiful in its own way, but you are going to need to be careful with how you take care of these bowls. As you are aware, glass can be quite fragile, so you will need to be careful not to drop your bowls or treat them too roughly.

You can find glass bowls in just about any style you could hope for. Customer survey This is going to be one of the primary materials in bowls that you will come across.

You might not see this as being the most practical bowl for every purpose since it can be somewhat delicate, but it will be very useful all the same. Purchasing nice glass bowls at an affordable price is simple and it will definitely be a boon to your kitchen.

Ceramic Bowls

Staub ceramic serving bowl with highly scratch, impact, and thermal shock resistant.

Source: Wayfair

Ceramic bowls are the favorite bowl for many people across the world. They aren’t indestructible, but they are definitely a little bit more sturdy than your average glass bowl is.

A really nice ceramic bowl can be very visually appealing as well, as they have a very distinct look that will look nice on your dinner table. This is going to be your everyday type of bowl that you will use for multiple purposes.

These bowls are excellent because they are just so handy in every situation. You can use ceramic bowls for decorative purposes because they really are very pretty. You can also use them for serving any type of food that you would want to put in a bowl.

These bowls will be safe in the microwave and in your dishwasher, so you’re going to be putting these types of bowls to great use in your home.

Stoneware Bowls

3R Studios stoneware bowls with a set of 4 bring a dollop of color to your dining table with colorful painted designs.

Source: Hayneedle

Stoneware bowls are pretty rugged overall and they will make for a perfect bowl for everyday use. One of the neat things about stoneware bowls is that they often come with fun designs.

These bowls are really easy for artisans to work with, they are able to do pretty intricate designs without it being too difficult. If you want some fun bowls for your family to use regularly, then you can’t go wrong with stoneware.

You will be able to use these bowls in your dishwasher and microwave without any issues. These bowls will work great for all of your purposes. You’ll be able to find soup bowls, cereal bowls, salad bowls, and many other types of bowls that fall under the stoneware category.

Earthenware Bowls

A round Byron black earthenware serving bowl with an abstract pattern design.

Source: Wayfair

Earthenware bowls have some similarities to stoneware bowls, but they differ from them visually in several ways.

You will find many different earthenware dining sets on the market that are visually striking. These earthenware bowls can look very nice and will definitely make a good addition to your kitchen.

If you like having bowls that are somewhat ornate, but also very durable, then using earthenware is going to appeal to you. These are very practical bowls for regular use and your whole family is going to enjoy using them.

Don’t hesitate to buy a nice set of earthenware bowls if you are in need of some new dishes.

Fine China Bowls

Fine China bowls are definitely very fragile. If you are not careful while using these types of bowls, then you are liable to chip them or even break the bowl entirely. This may not sound very appealing and some might even ask why anyone would want to own bowls that are so fragile.

The answer is that fine China is simply stunning and the visual appeal that they bring to the table far outweighs the negatives of their delicate nature.

For the most part, people like to display their fine China rather than use it regularly. Fine China is something that people will only use for dining purposes for very special occasions.

This means that if you are being served with fine China dinnerware at someone’s table, it is definitely a bit of an honor. You will likely want to display your fine China rather than use it very often.

People love displaying their fine China in large and ornate cabinets. They make for interesting conversation pieces. You will love owning some beautiful fine China bowls, so don’t hesitate to buy some to use for those really special dinners.

Bone China Bowls

28-piece Bone China Blue and White Dinnerware Set Service for 6 Rice Bowl Set Jingdezhen, (blue lotus)

Bone China is a little more sturdy than fine China. Interestingly, this China is actually somewhat thinner than fine China, but it is much more durable despite this.

You see, there is actual animal bone used in the creation of these bowls. Animal bone is turned to ash to create a paste-like substance that is used to make these bowls.

The bone winds up making the bowls a lot stronger than other types of China.

This doesn’t mean that you don’t need to be careful with it, though. It is absolutely important that you take care of your bone China bowls properly if you want them to last you for a long time. These are very ornate bowls that you will probably want to only use for special occasions.

Having bowls that are really nice can be quite appealing. Knowing that you have some impressive dinnerware that you can use for a special dinner will definitely make you happy.

Many people like to display their bone China when it isn’t in use because of how nice it looks. You’ll love the decorative look of these bowls, and they are fairly practical to use without damaging them.

Bamboo Bowls

Lipper bamboo small salad bowls is a four-piece salad bowl set made of durable bamboo.

Source: Hayneedle

Bamboo bowls have proven to be incredibly popular in the last several years. People are becoming more environmentally conscious all the time with global warming at the forefront of public consciousness.

You may be aware that you can purchase disposable bamboo plates and other items. These are all fully biodegradable and they will not harm the environment in any way.

The bamboo bowls that you can purchase aren’t something that you just need to get rid of after you use them once. You can reuse bamboo bowels many times, as long as you are willing to wash them by hand.

These bowls look really nice and many people like to use them for serving salad. They work great with the salad and it just looks right.

Keep in mind that these bowls will not be dishwasher or microwave safe in any way. If you try to use the dishwasher to wash your bamboo bowl, then you can say goodbye to it for the most part.

Washing these bowls by hand will be relatively simple, though. It won’t take up much of your time and they can be really nice to have around.

Melamine Bowls

Kate Spade New York Lemon melamine trio bowl with white base color and leaf pattern on exterior part of the bowl.

Source: Wayfair

Melamine bowls are another common type of bowl that you will want to make use of in your kitchen. These bowls are usually very inexpensive and you will be able to buy ones that look fantastic.

There are a lot of melamine bowls that have fun decorative designs on them, so they are perfect for adding a little character to your dinner table.

You’ll be able to find bowls that are made out of melamine in just about any style, so you will certainly find the types of bowls that you are looking for.

These bowls are popular with children because they can look really fun and they’re easy for them to use. Children can be a little rough when it comes to dishes, as they are often clumsy. Giving a child a glass bowl may not be the best idea, as they are likely to break it.

You don’t want your child to get hurt, so it is beneficial to have some of these melamine bowls that aren’t going to be harmed by getting dropped.

The process of making melamine bowls involves using an organic chemical that is used to create plastic. For this reason, melamine bowls share many common traits with plastic bowls.

They aren’t the same thing, though. Melamine bowls are generally seen as a little bit nicer than the average plastic bowl, but they can both serve the same purposes.

Remember that most melamine bowls will be dishwasher safe, but they may not be microwave safe. You don’t want to microwave these bowls because parts of the bowl may melt.

This would be bad and it would smell terrible, so avoid it at all costs. Warm up your food using a bowl that is better suited for a microwave, such as a ceramic bowl.

Plastic Bowls

You will find that plastic is used for making bowls quite often as well. These plastic bowls are actually quite useful and sometimes people prefer these types of bowls for storing their food in their refrigerator.

Plastic bowls aren’t exclusively used for food storage, though. You will find that many of the most popular breakfast cereal bowls are made out of plastic.

The great thing about plastic bowls is that they are relatively inexpensive. You can purchase many plastic bowls at a very reasonable price.

This will allow you to get all of the bowls that you need without having to spend too much money. Young adults who are just starting out on their own can really benefit from this quite a bit.

It is important to understand that these bowls are not safe to use in the microwave, though. You shouldn’t run into any problems using these types of bowls in your dishwasher, but they will not typically be able to withstand the power of a microwave.

You will want to purchase some ceramic bowls or some bowls that are made out of another more sturdy material so that you can use your microwave without any issues.

Metal Bowls

Blomus cast iron serving bowl is used for serving fruits or nuts and it is durably constructed with cast iron with metal accents.

Source: Hayneedle

Metal bowls are fairly common as well, but they aren’t used for as many purposes as some bowls. You will see metal bowls being used as mixing bowls and decorative bowls most often.

There are also some very nice serving bowls made out of materials such as cast iron that you would really love to own. Metal bowls are great because they clean up really well and they are virtually indestructible unless you are specifically trying to damage them.

Having some bowls in your kitchen that will be able to stand up to many years of use will definitely benefit you. Just keep in mind that if you do purchase some soup-sized bowls that are made out of metal, you will want to avoid using them in the microwave.

Bowls made out of metal heat up way too much in the microwave and you’re liable to severely burn your hands if you aren’t careful.

This is mostly common knowledge, but it is still important to keep the information in the back of your head so that you don’t make a mistake without thinking about it.

You’ll be able to make great use of metal bowls in your home, though.

Whether you want to use a really nice metal bowl as a decorative piece for the center of your table or if you want a serving bowl that is rugged, you will be able to find what you are looking for. It won’t take long to find a great metal bowl in the style that you want.

Bowl Styles

Soup Bowls

Of course, bowls come in many different styles and sizes. There are different bowls on the market that are largely meant to serve particular purposes. One of the most common styles of bowls that people make use of daily is the soup bowl. This style of bowl is great for eating soup, but it is also a bowl that people simply use for all of their purposes.

Salad Bowls

Bonroy Footed salad bowl with warm cherry stain on beech wood gives this large salad bowl a beautiful, rich finish.

Source: Wayfair

Another important bowl that you will want to own is a salad bowl. These styles of bowls are generally used for mixing salad in. Some people prefer to transfer the salad to a plate or a smaller bowl once everything has been tossed and mixed properly. Salad bowls are made using many different materials, but you will most commonly see glass and wooden salad bowls in people’s kitchen.

Rice BowlsEat your favorite rice dishes the way they were meant to be enjoyed by serving them in the BergHOFF Eclipse porcelain rice bowl with chop sticks.

Source: Hayneedle

Rice bowls are incredibly common all across the globe. There are certain countries that use rice bowls more often than others because of their higher inclination towards eating rice dishes.

These bowls have become very popular in North America as well, though. Sometimes these bowls are sold along with a pair of chopsticks, but you can find rice bowls that aren’t quite as Asian inspired to purchase as well.

Cereal Bowls

Corelle 6-Piece Soup/Cereal Bowl Set, Triple Layer Glass and Chip Resistant, 18-Oz Lightweight Round Bowls, Winter Frost White

Cereal is a big part of many people’s mornings, and you will want to have the right bowl to enjoy your favorite cereal to the fullest. You can purchase cereal bowls that work perfectly for your breakfast needs.

Most cereal bowls that you will find are made out of ceramic, glass, or melamine, but there are other options as well. You can even buy extra large cereal bowls if you want to enjoy a heaping helping of your favorite breakfast treat.

Mixing Bowls

From Fiesta, this vibrant 8-piece bowl set is the perfect addition to any collector's kitchen comes with four colorful stainless steel bowls in varying sizes include lids.

Source: Wayfair

Some bowls are used for preparing things to cook rather than eating out of them. Mixing bowls play an important role in the kitchen, so if you are the type of person who cooks a lot, you will want to have at least a couple of mixing bowls in your cupboards.

Mixing bowls are usually rather large and you can use them to mix ingredients together easily. You will definitely want one of these because mixing up ingredients to bake a cake in a shallow bowl isn’t going to be a simple task.

Storage Bowls

Keep your leftovers stored inside the American Atelier marble storage bowls that come in various sizes, each outfitted with a lid to seal in the flavors.

Source: Hayneedle

There are bowls on the market that are specifically meant for storing food in your refrigerator. You will be able to find many different sizes and styles of storage bowls to pick from. The important thing is to buy a bowl that has a really nice lid that seals well, as this will keep your food protected. Everyone needs storage bowls, so it’s a good idea to buy several of these to suit your purposes.

Dip Bowls

LIFVER Soy Sauce Dish Ceramic, Dipping Bowls, Serving Bowls for Side Dishes, Dip Bowls 3 Oz, Charcuterie Board Bowls Gravy Boat, Dipping Sauce Dish Porcelain, Set of 8, White

As you might expect from the name, these are bowls that you use for dip. Many people enjoy having chips with a little bit of dip. If you like this sort of thing, then it can be very convenient to have these bowls that are specifically meant for dipping. They are designed to make it really convenient to dip your chips and the curved design is visually appealing as well.

If you like making food, such as fondue, then this could make for an excellent serving bowl for that as well. You will find many handy uses for dip bowls. They are great to have around and you will enjoy making use of them for snack time.

Candy Bowls

The unique spherical design and clear plastic construction of the Sweets and Treats Bowl make it perfect for displaying homemade baked goods or colorful candies.

Source: Wayfair

Candy bowls are something that people like to leave out on their coffee tables or desks for guests. You can place candy or other types of snacks in the bowl so that people can feel free to enjoy a quick bite to eat.

These can be really neat looking as well, adding to the overall aesthetic of the table that you have placed it on. You might also see these types of bowls referred to as nut bowls, but they all serve the same purpose.

Pasta BowlsWedgwood Vibrance pasta bowl provides plenty of space for a heaping serving of pasta with a blue, gold, and black loop around of its rim as its design.

Source: Hayneedle

Pasta bowls have a very distinct look to them, so you will be able to differentiate them from other bowl styles quite easily. These are great to have in your kitchen if you are a big fan of Italian food.

If you like to serve pasta regularly, then having a couple of pasta bowls in your cupboards is going to be a must. These bowls are perfect for holding your linguine, rigatoni, fettuccine, or any other type of pasta.

Decorative Bowl

There are many people who like to buy decorative bowls that are meant mostly for display purposes. Sometimes a bowl will just have a really interesting look, and it might make the perfect centerpiece for a table setting.

There are those who like to place items inside of the bowl, such as plastic fruit, in order to add to the aesthetic. You will find many different styles of decorative bowls and you could use them to add to the visual appeal of your home.

Pet Bowls

This marble pet single bowl is made of durable, long-lasting melamine and is intended to match your home decor.

Source: Wayfair

Anyone who owns pets knows just how important it is to buy a good pet bowl. You will be able to find various styles of pet bowls at all of the major retailers in North America. Some pet bowls will come with their own stand that will help to keep your pet from spilling water on the floor.

Whatever pet bowl you decide to get, you will want to make sure that you have two of them in most cases, as you will want one for water and another for their food.

Change Bowls

Global Views Deco Duck change bowl with charming desk accent that is crafted from elegant white marble with a brass-toned metal duck perches at the side.

Source: Hayneedle

This isn’t a typical bowl that you will see at every home across the globe, but some people do enjoy throwing their spare change in a bowl. You could definitely use just about any type of bowl for this purpose if you wished, but there are specific change bowls that you can purchase.

These often have a cute design and will add a bit of charm to your desk or end table. It may not be a bowl that is an absolute necessity, but it can be one that you will enjoy having for its visual appeal.

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