Japanese tableware

This article provides an overview of Japanese tableware. We will constantly update the pages and articles dedicated to each specific piece of tableware. Links will be added to this article accordingly. Please visit this page again for any updates.


When we talk about Japanese tableware we include a large number of items of different shapes, materials, and sizes. Some will be easily recognizable while others may be new.

In this list we describe the items, the materials they are made from, and their common uses. However, as often happens in Japanese culture, the line between correctness and personal freedom is so thin, you may find people using pieces of tableware in different ways. As many Japanese artisans would say, "after you know how you are supposed to use it, you are free to enjoy it the way you like”.

Rice bowl

Soup bowl

Noodle bowl

Ramen bowl

multi-purpose plates and bowls

Steaming cup


Nabe pot

Cups for sake

Serving/COOKING chopsticks

Did you know?

Contrary to popular belief, there is no such thing as a table mat in Japanese traditions. In fact, this is called a “luncheon mat” (in Japanese-English, ranchion matto) in Japan, showing there is no local history related to it. What is often presented as a "typical Japanese place mat" made of bamboo strips is actually more like a zaru, a type of strainer used to serve noodles. Instead, bowls and plates, such as the ones in this article, are placed on a large tray in front of each diner.