Is Unglazed Pottery Dishwasher Safe?

Have you ever pondered the safety of putting Unglazed Pottery in the dishwasher?

Does your precious pottery stand a chance against a dishwasher’s mighty waves and high temperature?

Let’s decode the mystery and dive deep into the world of unglazed pottery, its nuances, and how to care for it.

Short Summary

  • Unglazed pottery often lacks the protective layer that makes most dishes Dishwasher safe.
  • The porous nature of unglazed pottery can absorb dishwasher detergent, which may not be safe for food usage later.
  • Hand washing with mild soap and warm water is a safer alternative to keep your unglazed pottery clean without risking any damage.

Is Unglazed Pottery Dishwasher Safe

Architectural Pottery David Cressey Unglazed Cheerio Ceramic Planter for Architectural Pottery 291742 912103

Unglazed pottery, notably stoneware pottery, isn’t typically safe for the Dishwasher. The harsh detergents and hot water used in dishwashers can damage these pieces. Unlike glazed ceramics, these pieces can absorb water at the right temperature, leading to potential cracking.

Furthermore, vibrant paints used on the pottery, especially if fired incorrectly, can fade or wash away. It’s important to note that mid-fire stoneware, a type of unglazed pottery, displays similar risks. To maintain the longevity and aesthetic appeal of your unglazed pottery, it’s recommended to hand wash these items instead of using the Dishwasher.

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Can Unglazed Stoneware go in the Dishwasher?

Stoneware pottery, particularly the unglazed variants, should be cautiously approached when putting them in the Dishwasher. Unlike other dinnerware, clay slips in pottery pieces can absorb dishwasher soaps and water at the right temperature. This can lead to damage over time.

Moreover, unglazed stoneware lacks the barrier provided by a proper glaze. This leaves it vulnerable to harsh dishwasher detergent. Therefore, to keep your unglazed stoneware in the best condition, it’s advised to hand wash these pieces instead of using the Dishwasher.

Why are Some Ceramics, not Dishwasher Safe?


Ceramics, especially soft and unglazed pottery, are often unsafe for the Dishwasher. One of the reasons is the effect of extreme temperature changes. Ceramics made from stoneware clay are particularly susceptible to this.

Glazed ceramics can withstand high temperatures and the rigorous environment of a dishwasher. They maintain their bright appearance and can be used in a dishwasher safely. However, unglazed pottery lacks this protective layer, making it unsafe for stoneware use in a dishwasher.

Understanding Dishwasher-Safe Pottery

When identifying if pottery is Dishwasher safe, consideration of the types of ceramics used is crucial. Softer ceramics, such as unglazed pottery, are not recommended for dishwasher use due to their vulnerability to high temperatures often encountered in dishwashers.

On the other hand, high-fire stoneware and porcelain pottery, paired with well-designed glazes, are resistant to high temperatures, allowing them to go in the Dishwasher without damage. These glazed ceramics are designed for everyday use and can withstand a dishwasher’s rigorous cleaning cycle safely.

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However, even with robust materials like high-fire stoneware or porcelain, always refer to manufacturer instructions to ensure your pottery is Dishwasher safe.

Can You Put Handmade Ceramics in Dishwasher?

Handmade ceramics, including earthenware dishes, are often more delicate than machine-made pottery. These items may not be fired correctly, making them less wear-resistant and more susceptible to the harsh effects of dishwasher detergent.

The same applies to unglazed pottery, which lacks the delicate glaze that makes porcelain pottery more resistant to wear. Even if a pottery piece is glazed, it’s important to ensure it was fired at the right temperature to withstand the Dishwasher’s heat and harsh detergents.

Generally, hand wash your handmade ceramics to avoid possible damage. Always check with the potter if you’re uncertain about a piece’s dishwasher safety.

Can You Put Clay Pots in the Dishwasher?

Clay pots, particularly unglazed ones, can absorb water excessively, making them unsuitable for dishwasher use. Extreme temperature changes and harsh detergent can cause these items to crack or break.

Like fine china and other ornate dinnerware pieces, clay pots require special care. Even mid-fire, more durable stoneware than a ceramic dish can suffer in the Dishwasher.

Thus, hand-washing these items is preferable to preserve their integrity. Always practice dishwasher safety when dealing with pottery, especially if it is handmade or overly water-absorbent.

Final Thoughts

white unglazed ceramic vase decoration room European style and modern Nordic style Home Furnishing

Unglazed pottery, while attractive, is not typically Dishwasher safe. The absence of a protective glaze layer exposes the pottery to moisture and high temperatures that can be damaging. It’s important to remember that ceramics vary widely, and some may not be Dishwasher safe due to their composition or the way they were fired. This includes many handmade ceramics and clay pots.

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Glazed pottery generally fares better in dishwashers, but other factors, such as the clay type used, are at play. As a rule, always check with the manufacturer or artisan. To maintain your unglazed pottery, hand washing is usually the safest option.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is unglazed pottery dishwasher safe?

No, unglazed pottery is not Dishwasher safe. The porous nature of unglazed pottery can absorb water and soap, leading to damage.

What can happen if I put unglazed pottery in the Dishwasher?

Unglazed pottery in the Dishwasher can absorb dishwasher detergent. This could change the pottery’s color or texture or even cause it to become brittle and break.

How should I clean my unglazed pottery?

Unglazed pottery should be cleaned by hand. Use warm water, mild dish soap, and a soft brush or cloth for cleaning.

What about pottery that’s partially unglazed?

If pottery is partially unglazed, it’s still best to avoid the Dishwasher. The unglazed parts can absorb water and detergent, leading to the same issues as fully unglazed pottery.

Are there any types of pottery that are Dishwasher safe?

Yes, fully glazed pottery is generally Dishwasher safe. The glaze seals the pottery, preventing water and soap absorption.