What Is A Dough Bowl? Background & Modern Decor Tips

Are you a home decor enthusiast looking for something unique to spruce up your living space as well as impress your houseguests? Then look no further than the timeless and classic dough bowl! A staple in farmhouses throughout history, these tools-turned-works of art are filled with character and rustic charm. So if you want to bring some personality as well as add some function to your home, this could be just the thing to do so! In this blog post, we’ll explore what makes dough bowls so special and how they can help to enhance your living space.

History of the Dough Bowl

Dough bowls have been around since the 18th century, since colonial times in America. Originally used by bakers to knead dough to make bread; they’re often made from easy-to-clean wood such as walnut, pine, or cherry. Wooden dough bowls are often made with intricate designs, making them highly ornate pieces. This is why expert craftsmanship combined with traditions dating back centuries make wooden dough bowls one of the most sought-after antiques on the market.

Why do they call them dough bowls?

You can thank the bakers that traditionally used them for making bread for this simple yet easy-to-understand name. They would mix bread dough in these bowls; this is why it was important for them to typically have a large dough bowl in order to fit the dough needed for bread making.

Understanding the Different Types of Dough Bowls

As you know by now, dough bowls were used historically as large-scale dough mixing containers, with many wooden dough bowls being made from wood that was over a hundred years old. Now, these dough bowls are beloved for their beauty as well as rustic grain patterns, perfect for adding farmhouse antique style to your home.

Round wooden dough bowls are the most traditional style and provide an even surface for kneading dough. Oval bowls are slightly larger with curved sides, which makes them perfect for larger batches of dough. A rectangular wooden bowl offers more workspace than round or oval varieties and is often decorated with detailed carvings. Square dough bowls, while less common, have recently become popular due to their sleek modern design.

How to Choose the Right Vintage Dough Bowl for Your Home

When it comes to home decor, dough bowls are some of the most classic and timeless pieces you can find. Not only do they make a beautiful centerpiece in any living space, but dough bowls also provide form and function. Whether you’re looking for an antique dough bowl to show off your eye for detail, or something modern that will fit seamlessly into your existing decor, it doesn’t take much to find something that works with your personal style. Before making the purchase, be sure to consider the size and material of the dough bowl you are decorating with so that it fits naturally within your home.

What do you put in a dough bowl?

You can get very creative with what you place inside of your wooden dough bowl! For example, antique dough bowls are the perfect vessel for displaying fragrant and colorful flowers. Besides spring flowers Some other decorating ideas for filling a vintage dough bowl are below:

  • Add dough bowl candles- we would recommend multi-wick candles, as these can be very functional.

  • Jewelry is a great way to decorate your antique dough bowl- this adds a modern touch to the piece.

  • Food items such as fruits or nuts, or even faux fruit is also a wonderful method in order to incorporate an antique dough bowl into a farmhouse kitchen.

Where To Place A Dough Bowl In Your Home Decor

The good news is that dough bowls can be placed in any room of your home! They are especially great for living rooms, kitchens, and dining rooms to add a rustic touch. Below are specific examples of how to incorporate a beautiful dough bowl into some key areas of the home:

Kitchen or Dining Room

A dough bowl can function superbly as a dining table centerpiece- especially a dough bowl filled with fruit (real or fake!). Besides placing it on the dining room table, a kitchen island also works well if you prefer to fill it with kitchen tools that help you cook.

Living Room

Placing a wooden dough bowl on a coffee table or console table is also a great way to add a rustic touch to an environment where your guests will spend time- this is also a perfect room in which to place scented candles that can be enjoyed by anyone. Remember that a dough bowl centerpiece on a coffee table really has the potential to make a strong first impression, especially if your living room is near the entryway of your home!

In addition, a hand-carved dough bowl is also a natural fit for a side table and can be filled with candles or even natural elements such as small white pumpkins or dried flowers in order to bring nature from the outside to life inside of your home!

Tips on Caring for a Dough Bowl

Like any furniture item, keeping antique dough bowls in good shape requires just a little bit of TLC- especially those that are hand carved. Below are some maintenance tips on how to best care for your dough bowl:

  • Place the bowl in an area away from direct sunlight or a warm place, as this could cause warping or cracking within the wood. Similarly, avoid placing a dough bowl in humid environments as this will accelerate damage to the wood due to moisture.

  • To protect hand-carved wooden dough bowls from moisture and water damage, you should also apply a coat of food-safe wax on both the inside and the outside of the wooden bowl.

  • Dust with a soft cloth or paper towel regularly and if spills occur, make sure to clean the dough bowl promptly, and be gentle when wiping down wood so that you won’t leave scratches behind.

With the right care and maintenance, your antique dough bowl will look beautiful for many years to come!


To sum up, antique dough bowls are vintage items that can be a wonderful addition to any home. Although they were traditionally used for kneading bread dough, they can bring similar functionality today to a living space while also adding a touch of farmhouse charm.

There are a few key things to consider when shopping for a rustic type of dough bowl, such as the type and size of the dough bowl- for example, if you are planning to fill a round bowl you would want to make sure that it is large enough to fit any decorative accents. If cared for properly, these beautiful pieces can last for generations to come. At our rustic decorating store, we have something for every taste and budget- check out our selection of authentic antique dough bowls and see what we have in stock that suits your tastes!

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