Melamine dinnerware is a practical option for eating outdoors for a number of reasons. The material is shatterproof unlike traditional tableware. It’s also lighter to carry for garden lunches in a bag and the designs have come so far that you often don’t notice that the bowls and plates aren’t actually ceramic until you pick them up.
It’s also an eco-friendly option as melamine can be washed and reused again and again, unlike disposable paper or plastic plates sometimes used for picnics and eating outdoors.
Whether you’re looking for elegant outdoor dining tableware for garden dinner parties, sturdy options for family barbecues or simply some extra-durable plates and bowls to keep in the cupboard, there are lots of melamine, bamboo and eco-fibre options to choose from.
Here are 10 of our favourite melamine and bamboo dinnerware and outdoor tableware choices for stress free alfresco dining.
Get outside with the perfect picnic and be inspired by our easy summer sharing recipes. For more summery buys, visit our reviews section to find 400+ buyer’s guides including the best charcoal barbecues and best pizza ovens.
Oka Peccioli melamine bowls, set of four
We love the rustic, distressed finish of Oka’s Peccioli melamine outdoor tableware – it’s hard to tell at first glance that these bowls aren’t ceramic. They’re available in both azure blue and forest green. Matching side plates and dinner plates are available if you want a full set of dinnerware.
Epicurean Rio medallion 26cm melamine plates, set of four
Summer in plate form, these Epicurean Rio melamine plates channel the colour designs of glazed clay, in a shatterproof and dishwasher-friendly form.
Rex London melamine kids plates
Melamine kids dinnerware can luckily handle side-swipes from high chairs onto floors by little hands. Rex London do a lovely selection of animal-inspired kids plates that feature animal illustrations in a variety of colours and designs.
VonChef 12pc melamine dinner set
This shatterproof set of melamine dinnerware comes with four plates, bowls and side plates and has a nicely ridged grey finish – a great set for relaxed outdoor lunches or dressed up dinners.
Marvo melamine dinner plates, set of four
If you like a colour pop, these melamine plates by Marvo will brighten both your cupboard and your picnic basket. They’re a simple and well-priced option to consider.
TALRIKA deep plates, set of four
Deep dishes like these melamine plates from IKEA are perfect for recipes that tumble, like pasta, or for loading up with a proper picnic selection, like potato salads, tabbouleh and halloumi in any iteration. True to IKEA form, this set is cheap as chips.
Amazon floral melamine salad plates, set of four
For light bites, these Amazon-inspired plates featuring exotic palm designs are one way to embrace the exotic from your garden lawn, picnic blanket or kitchen table.
BIOZOYG sustainable bamboo bowl, set of four
Made of eco-friendly fibre, these sustainable bamboo bowls are lightweight and stackable, making them great options for camping or simply taking on walks. They’re also dishwasher safe up to 60 degrees.
LEON bamboo picnic plates, set of four
The geometric patterns and bright pastel colours make these bamboo plates by LEON and John Lewis particularly nice options if you’re looking for a bright and simple outdoor tableware.
EMIKO blue bamboo serving bowl
Bamboo is a fast-growing and lightweight material that’s naturally sustainable. This serving bowl is 25.5cm across and deep enough for tossing large leafy salads that serve whole families. The outer side colour also contrasts nicely to the warmth of the wood.
Recipes to eat outdoors
This review was last updated in May 2020. If you have any questions, suggestions for future reviews or spot anything that has changed in price or availability please get in touch at email@example.com.