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Minimalism and Meal Times

A minimally decorated table is the highlight to the heart of your home. This is where life happens! Keeping the table simple, means that children can take joy setting the table themselves. It also means that you don’t have to continually declutter your tableware, because you aren’t tempted to add to the collection, but are content and pleased with the simple beauty of the set you have.

And you don’t need extra storage for table decor, so, if you haven’t yet, you should get rid of your china cabinet!

A clean, clear dining area gives a sense of calm, which is very important, since it is typically the place where children do homework, bills are paid and meals are enjoyed with the entire family.

Table Decor:
A tablecloth or placemats. Yup, that’s the extent of my decor. It’s a great way to add a splash of color to your home. Use something that is practical: I absolutely love a clean white tablecloth, but realistically, I have kids. So we pick multi colored tablecloths or placemats that hide stains.

Quality dishes should be selected that don’t chip and beautiful functional baking dishes that double as serving dishes, eliminates any “need” for serving dishes. When choosing place settings, keep to white in color, as it makes the food most appealing. Colorful plates distract from the simple beauty of the food you have prepared.

Keep meals simple. Make a main dish, serve it with a simple side dish. Real food is delicious without having to put a huge amount of time and effort into it. Click here for my list of 5 ingredient recipes or here for my 30 Days of Simple Dinners e-book.

Side Dishes:
Side dishes are a wonderful way to be minimal. Let the main dish be the star of the meal! Serve simple and easy sides. Here are some ideas:
Fresh vegetables: carrot sticks, tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers, green onions.
Grilled vegetables: zucchini, yellow squash, mushrooms.
Fresh fruit: sliced apples, melons, pineapple, peaches, nectarines, strawberries.
Starches: bread, rice, crackers, potatoes. (And butter of course!)

Save desserts for when you are really wanting a big meal and don’t mind spending the extra time to prepare it. If you feel it’s necessary to enjoy desserts more frequently, serve fruit. Make it special by including a high quality chocolate bar or serve in a bowl with raw cream and a drizzle of maple syrup.


Decluttering The Kids Rooms:

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About the author, Rachel

Hi there! I’m Rachel Jones, and I founded Nourishing Minimalism in 2012 at the beginning of my minimalist journey. If you're looking for encouragement in your journey, I go live in my FREE Facebook Groups every weekday- feel free to join me there: Nourishing Minimalism Facebook Group


  1. Melanie on 08/21/2014 at 3:05 PM

    What kind of dishes do you have? All of mine chip.

    • Rachel on 08/21/2014 at 5:14 PM

      Denby and Corelle are both sturdy brands that I recommend.

      • Alison Heal on 04/06/2017 at 2:59 PM

        Yes, we’ve had our Denby set for 27 years and counting…

      • Doreen Svarny on 01/09/2018 at 4:40 PM

        Fiesta ware-made in the USA- extremely durable and come in gorgeous colors. All I have ever owned.

  2. Marie Catherina on 12/31/2015 at 2:03 PM

    My new Year’s wish is for everyone to quit telling others how to live…”When choosing place settings, keep to white in color,” Does it really matter what color dishes one chooses? “Less” means different things for all of us… Just a thought.

    • crys on 08/13/2016 at 11:03 AM

      well, given this is a blog based on her experiences + what works for her family, the suggestion of the color of dishes is appropriate. you can make the decision on your own whether to take the suggestion or not. good day!!

    • Jean on 03/29/2017 at 3:31 PM

      Criminy! First world problems. *sigh*

  3. Megan on 12/31/2015 at 5:08 PM

    I completely agree! Switching to all-white dishes has saved us so much hassle… they fit any holiday or theme. As always, thanks for the inspiration to keep keeping it simple. 😉

  4. Amanda on 06/15/2019 at 1:02 AM

    Your blog has been a breath of fresh air for me! Your simple suggestions are so foreign to me… Coming from an upbringing of every color of fiesta ware dishes for everyday use. Not to mention all of the other sets of dishes… A simple lovely white set is what I use now. I needed a splash of color so I incorporated a few everyday turquoise bowls. So clean & calm. I love it!
    So thank you. It has been a paradigm shift for me but I am loving the freedom that the ideas of simple & minimal life can bring. God bless!

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