How Do We Make Such Large Wooden Bowls?

Cherry Burl Bowl

Looking for a large wooden bowl for your kitchen? The world’s largest wooden bowl was created by a team of woodworkers at a county fair in Hamburg, NY in 2018. At 15 feet in diameter, that bowl beat out a 13 foot diameter bowl made several years earlier in Austria for the world record.

At Spencer Peterman, our definition of “large wooden bowl” is a little different. While our largest bowls are far smaller than the world record holders, we think our largest bowls are still pretty impressive, and have the added benefit of fitting in your kitchen. 

In this post, we’ll share our collection of large wooden bowls and give you some insight into the process of making them.

How We Make Our Large Wooden Bowls

wooden bowl with food safe wood finish

We work exclusively with wood that is both sustainably and locally sourced in New England.

Through our relationships with local tree services, we take logs that would be chipped, tossed, or burned and turn them into gorgeous and functional works of art for your home: our handcrafted boards, bowls, and salad tossers.

We turn every bowl by hand in our workshop in Gill, MA (next door to our showroom where you can see our work in person), and our bowls range in size from 10” to 21” in diameter.

At 21” in diameter, our largest wooden bowls are a labor of love. The process used to create such a large bowl is more intensive than that of smaller bowls, which is why such large wooden bowls are both more expensive and harder to find than other sized bowls.

First, we need to find logs that are large enough to make a 21” diameter bowl. And once we do, it takes three times longer to turn a 21” bowl on the lathe than one of our smaller bowls.

Once turned, these bowls are more vulnerable to cracking during the sanding process due to their large size. And lastly, they need extra time in our kiln to dry–as much as a month.

Our Line of Extra Large Wooden Bowls

Our 21” bowls come in several wood types, finishes, and styles.

Wood Types

We work with locally sourced and upcycled oak, cherry, black walnut, spalted and ambrosia maple, and burl wood.

spalted live edge bowl

In our spalted maple bowls, the spalting effect is caused by naturally present fungi. During the early stages of the natural decomposition process, these fungi create one-of-a-kind lined patterns in the wood.


Live edge Ambrosia Maple Bowl

Our ambrosia maple bowls are adorned with natural markings created by the ambrosia beetle burrowing into the wood.


handmade burl bowl

Our burl bowls are turned from burls, which form on trees as the result of a stressor, such as an injury. While burls might appear as an imperfection on a living tree, burl wood is notoriously hard to find and highly sought after for its beauty. 

All Natural Food Safe Wood Finishes

We use only all natural, 100% food safe wood finished on our bowls, so that you can use them with confidence.

white oak wood bowls

We create our white pearl and driftwood bowls using 100% food safe, all natural paint washes, which give our pieces a classic white finish and beachy gray finish, respectively. 

Ebonized live edge oak bowl

Our ebonized black bowls are darkened with a food safe stain made from steel wool and vinegar. This solution oxidizes the wood, creating an aged effect in a short amount of time.

We treat our wooden bowls with a proprietary mix of all natural, food-safe oils. This mix has taken us years to perfect and adds a beautiful, lustrous, and protective coating.


All of our bowls, including our extra large 21″ bowls, come in three different styles.

food safe wood finish spalted maple

Our Classic Round Bowls are a classic round shape with a clean edge.

spalted live edge bowl

Featuring a natural live edge, our Live Edge Oval Bowls have an organic oval shape. Please note that our Burl Bowls are only available as Live Edge Oval Bowls.


white pearl salad tossers

Our Harvest Bowls have a round shape and perfectly placed handles.

How to Use our Extra Large Wooden Bowls

Our large wooden bowls, unlike their record-setting counterparts, are both beautiful and functional. Here are some of our favorite ways to use them:


If you’re passionate about entertaining, you’ll be sure to impress your guests when you serve a homemade, family sized salad from these bowls. For serving, we recommend pairing our extra large bowls with our largest salad tossers.


We take pride in not only the function, but the beauty of our bowls. At any size, they stand alone as a display piece for the home.


Incorporate other elements to create a decorative centerpiece for your dining room or coffee table. Add a vining plant or fern (fake or real–just be sure to never leave standing water in your wooden bowl!), or display baubles, a seashell collection, or colorful balls of yarn from your latest knitting project. The possibilities are endless.

large wooden bowls

You can shop our entire collection of wooden bowls–both large and small–right here. Or come visit us in person at our Gill, MA or Boston Public Market locations!

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