Dinnerware FAQs

What material does Pfaltzgraff use to make dinnerware?

Pfaltzgraff has used earthenware, stoneware, porcelain and bone china at some point in our history. Our current dinnerware patterns are made primarily of stoneware and earthenware. Ironstone and porcelain dinnerware may be offered less frequently.

What is the difference between bone china, porcelain, stoneware and earthenware?

Bone China is made from a mixture of bone ash and highly refined clay and is typically fired at over 2200° F. It is pure white or cream and translucent. Bone china is the most durable of the ceramic types that are discussed here.

Porcelain is made from highly refined white clay and can be fired at over 2300° F. It is often translucent and non-porous. Porcelain tends to be thinner and lighter than stoneware with a more delicate appearance.

Stoneware is a hard, durable ceramic made of light colored clay typically fired at over 2200° F. It is opaque and porous. Stoneware dinnerware tends to be thicker and heavier than porcelain or china. It can be glazed in a wide variety of colors and finishes (matte, satin, and shiny) for diverse designs.

Earthenware is made from a mixture of clay and sand and is usually fired at temperatures near 2100° F. Earthenware is opaque and porous and tends to be less resistant to chipping than stoneware. Earthenware is an ideal medium for hand-painted and embossed designs. The lower firing temperatures allow for more intense color than would be possible with other types of ceramics. Ironstone is a heavier, stronger type of earthenware.

What is the best way to warm and bake foods in my stoneware/earthenware?

Pfaltzgraff stoneware is microwave, conventional oven, freezer and dishwasher safe. We suggest the following when baking in your stoneware:

  1. Do not subject your stoneware or earthenware to sudden or extreme temperature changes. Start your oven no higher than 225°F for the first 10 minutes, then increase to desired temperature.
  2. Do not place hot dishes on a wet surface or handle with a wet cloth. The hot dish may break when touching the colder water.
  3. Do not place stoneware or earthenware on direct heat, in the broiler, or under a microwave browning element.
  4. Always use a padded mitt when removing from oven or microwave.
  5. When warming in microwave, use the stoneware piece that best fits the portion size. This way, all items will heat evenly and not cause "hot spots" in your stoneware that could lead to crazing and cracking.
  6. Earthenware can become extremely hot when used in the microwave. Use of potholders or padded mitts is recommended.

What is the best way to warm and bake foods in my porcelain?

Pfaltzgraff porcelain is microwave, conventional oven, freezer and dishwasher safe. We suggest the following when baking in your porcelain:

  1. Do not subject your porcelain to sudden or extreme temperature changes. Start your oven no higher than 225°F for the first 10 minutes, then increase to a temperature no higher than 350 degrees.
  2. Do not place hot dishes on a wet surface or handle with a wet cloth. The hot dish may break when touching the colder water.
  3. Do not place porcelain on direct heat, in the broiler, or under a microwave browning element.
  4. Always use a padded mitt when removing from oven or microwave.
  5. When warming in microwave, use the porcelain piece that best fits the portion size. This way, all items will heat evenly and not cause "hot spots" in your piece that could lead to crazing and cracking.
  6. Porcelain with a metallic rim should not be used in a microwave.

What's included in a five-piece place setting of dinnerware?

A five-piece place setting consists of a dinner plate, salad plate, bowl, and cup and saucer. Boxed sets of four place settings (20 pieces) are available in a limited number of patterns.

What's included in a four-piece place setting of dinnerware?

A four-piece place setting consists of a dinner plate, salad plate, bowl, and a mug. Boxed sets of four place settings (16 pieces) are available in many patterns.

Does Pfaltzgraff offer glassware to match or coordinate with my dinnerware pattern?

Matching or coordinating glassware is available for many of our dinnerware patterns. Check our website to see what is available to match or coordinate with your pattern.

What accessories can I get in my pattern?

A variety of accessories is available in most Pfaltzgraff patterns. Accessories range from basic (sugar & creamer, salt & pepper, vegetable bowl, etc.) to unique (corn dishes, ice cream cone dishes).

Are Pfaltzgraff products dishwasher and microwave safe?

Pfaltzgraff dinnerware is safe to use in the dishwasher and microwave.

Earthenware can become extremely hot when used in the microwave. Use of potholders or padded mitts is recommended.

Never use any dinnerware with metal trim in the microwave.

Pfaltzgraff also licenses other manufacturers who produce coordinating items. Please read the use and care instructions for any non-ceramic products carefully.

What happens if my pattern is retired?

The decision to stop making a pattern is always a difficult one. We know choosing a dinnerware pattern is an important decision for you and we will continue to produce a pattern as long as there is enough demand for it.

Why do I see gray lines on my dishes?

Some stoneware owners notice gray marks or "scratches" on their dinnerware. This is not a defect. These marks can occur when metal utensils come into contact with the hard glazes typically used by most stoneware manufacturers.

Stoneware glazes look and feel very smooth; however, the surface is composed of microscopic peaks and valleys. When metal utensils, which are often softer than the glaze, contact the stoneware, tiny metal particles become caught in the microscopic valleys.

Though some users characterize the gray marks as scratches, usually there is no damage to the glaze or the stoneware body. The metal deposits can be removed with a variety of cleansers, including Pfaltzgraff Stoneware & Porcelain Cleaner, Zud, Bar Keepers Friend, etc.

Pfaltzgraff developed Pfaltzgraff Stoneware & Porcelain Cleaner specifically to remove metal marks from ceramic products. The combination of chemical action and a mild abrasive in the cleaner easily removes the metal particles from the glaze. Pfaltzgraff Stoneware & Porcelain Cleaner is endorsed by the American Standard Company for use with its Americast® products.

Are my dishes safe?

Pfaltzgraff, a Lifetime Brands company, stands behind the safety and quality of all of its products. All of our products are tested by accredited, independent laboratories and meet or exceed all federal standards relating to lead and other contaminants.