Ceramics can be found everywhere, and we use them every day. Washing is a way to take care of or clean these works of art, but the question is, is ceramic pottery safe for the dishwasher? People have to demand me a lot of questions about pottery and dishwashers. Some potters say that some pottery projects can be cleaned in a dishwasher, while others don’t manage one way or the other if they can be cleaned in a dishwasher.

As a general rule, you can put food in the dishwasher if you can put it in a ceramic bowl. Most pieces of pottery follow this rule, but there are a few that don’t. All dinnerware and ceramicware can go in the dishwasher as long as it is packed in carefully. But there are some exceptions, like soft ceramics, pieces with a lot of detail, and ceramics with a thin glaze.


As the name suggests, “dishwashers” are only for washing dishes. Sculptures are not what dishwashers are made for. Don’t put a ceramic sculpture in the dishwasher at any time. Not only will it break your dishes, but it can also seriously damage your dishwasher. Mid-fire stoneware and high-fire stoneware clay are both safe for the dishwasher. Research has shown that you can put a few pieces of kaolin in a dishwasher. Pieces of stoneware can be put in the dishwasher safe because they are very hard and solid. Stoneware doesn’t have pores, whether vitrified or not (it does not soak up liquids). Stoneware has been used for many years to make high-quality and useful items.

The Kaolinite in the clay is what gives stoneware dishes their strength. Stoneware clay has Kaolinite, but it is in a messy state. Mica and quartz are also present, but their particles are very small. Stoneware clay often has impurities like iron or carbon, making it look dirty and hard to break. Because they are fired at high temperatures, stoneware dishes are also strong enough to go in the dishwasher. Wikipedia says that you can fire stoneware between 1,100 °C (2,010 °F) and 1,300 °C (2,370 °F). When the dishes are heated to a high temperature, the clay hardens, making it hard to break if they move around in the dishwasher.


If something rattles or moves around in the dishwasher, it will most likely get chipped, crazed, dunted, cracked, or shattered. It’s difficult to ensure that dinnerware and ceramicware are packed well and that nothing else will hit them during the wash cycle. It means that you shouldn’t put weird things in the dishwasher. Strange things, in this case, are metal plates, heavy pots, and covers. The more intricate a piece is, the more edges and seams there are that can crack and break.

So, be careful when you put ceramics that aren’t as hard in the dishwasher. From my point of view, you should never put soft ceramics in the dishwasher. Earthenware and a few stonewares are the most common types of soft ceramics. Earthenware and some stoneware are made with less refined clays and fired at lower temperatures than porcelain. It makes them more porous and breakable.

The water in the dishwasher soaks up porous ceramics. As a result, it will change how well the pottery can handle temperature changes, making it more likely to crack or break. Also, the dishwasher soap will mix with the water and be absorbed by the ceramic dish, which can change the taste of food served in the dish later.

Dishwashers should not be used to clean ceramics that have bright glazes. Bright glazes may lose their shine in the moist, soapy environment of the dishwasher. It could make your dish look dull, but it could also cause glaze flakes to fall into your food or, even worse, toxic chemicals to leak out of the glaze.


You can find out if your pottery can go in the dishwasher in a few different ways. The easiest way to tell if you can put your ceramics in the dishwasher is to look at the bottom and see if it says “dishwasher safe.” Most ceramics sold in stores have a sign indicating if they can be put in the dishwasher. If an earthenware piece doesn’t have a label that says it can go in the dishwasher, it’s best to assume it can’t.

If you look at the glaze on a piece of ceramic, you can tell if it can go in the dishwasher. Glazes are hard to tell unless the potter says so, but if a ceramic dish is painted in bright colors, it’s best not to put it in the dishwasher. Most decorative glazes are fired at low temperatures, which makes it possible for the colors to be more vivid and varied.

You can also do a few tests to see if the glaze on your ceramics is safe for the dishwasher.

  • Putting the item in soda ash and letting it boil for 6 hours,
  • Putting a lemon slice on it overnight
  • Scraping the surface with a sharp knife can show if the glaze has a possible weak spot.

If any of the above tests fail, it’s clear that your ceramic is not safe for the dishwasher. When the glaze on a ceramic piece begins to come off, it fails the test. So even though the original is broken, you shouldn’t put copies of that ceramic in the dishwasher.


Hand washing is the most protected way to clean ceramic dishes. When you wash ceramic dinnerware by hand, you can be careful that it doesn’t get too many cracks or scratches and keep it out of the water for as little time as possible.

Soap should not be used on unglazed ceramics. If you wash dishes that don’t have a glaze on them with soap, you will taste the soap when you eat.

In this article, I explain if it’s safe to wash pottery in the dishwasher, what kinds of ceramics can go in the dishwasher, and how to tell if your ceramic is safe for the dishwasher.


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