Presentation 101: How to Plate to Please a Crowd

November 11, 2015 by Kari Karch


You’ve got your new Kenmore Pro appliances and you’re whipping up meals that are pleasing to the palate and fetching rave reviews. But since we eat with our eyes first it’s also important to serve your food in a visually appealing way. It’s what we chefs call plating the food. Take a couple from cues from me and you’ll be one step closer to being a chef extraordinaire!


Everything looks better on a white backdrop
Using white plates or bowls enhances the colors of your food and makes your dish really pop. Try plating tonight’s dinner on a white plate versus one of your ordinary dinner plates and be amazed at the difference. I love going to discount dollar stores and restaurant depots to pick up an array of plating options for a lowered cost.


Always plate in 3’s
This is one of the first tricks a chef will teach you about plating. When you plate in odd numbers, you are not oversaturating the plate. Your focus is the main protein and not all the sides. Try practicing with sautéed scallops or large prawns and see how gorgeous a large white plate with three prawns look as opposed to four.


Channel your inner Monet
The swoop of a sauce is seen in the most upscale of restaurants but you don’t have to be a world-renowned chef to recreate this masterpiece. Grab a large serving spoon or spatula and place a dollop of your sauce in the center of the plate. Gently take the back of the utensil and pull the sauce in a half circle. This will give your plating presentation a Nouveau riche spin on the same ole marinara you’ve been serving up.


Top off with green
I love using fresh herbs when I cook so it’s essential that I use them as a garnish to finish my plate as well. Chop up some fresh chives to take that boring omelet from a zero to a hero. Try chiffonading some basil to add a ribbon-like herb on top of your spaghetti and meatballs. The taste will be elevated and the decadent scents will permeate your entire home.


Do your homework
The next time you go out to a restaurant, check out all the plates being served up. I’m sure you will see some interesting takes on the way a chef plates up their food. Presentation is key so why not borrow a cool plating idea from one of your favorite chefs? I’m sure they would be honored!

What are some of the ways that you creatively serve your meals? Share your tips and tricks in the comments!

Kari Karch

Kari Karch is a 19-year veteran of the culinary industry, creator of Kiss the Cook, and the head chef and spokesperson for the Kenmore brand. She has made many notable appearances on ABC Morning News, on WGN, on the Cooking Channel and as a judge for the World Food Championships.