Fall Entertaining Tips: Pumpkin Pedestals

A pumpkin becomes as pedestal for a cheese plate at a fall party

It’s a trick caterers and others have used for years upon years: display food at different heights on a table for a more visually interesting landscape. In fact, those very same caterers have whole piles of props designed specifically to elevate their food (to the naked eye at least). For those of us who only cater our own small gatherings at home, having a collection of pillars and other hight-giving apparatuses often isn’t practical from either a budget or storage standpoint. While I do have a small collection of tiered trays and stackable pedestal servers, but I’m always looking for new ways to make my tablescapes fun, interesting, and well, taller.

Who knew that pumpkins were an option?

Indeed it turns out that pumpkins can be a great way to raise platters of food up off of the table and contribute to the overall aesthetic of the table at the same time. They are also compostable (or carvable) so you don’t have to store them season after season. When selecting pumpkins to act as pedestals on your fall table keep a couple of things in mind:

  • Selet wider more squat pumpkins so you have more surface area to work with. “Cinderella” pumpkins, like the ones in my photo, seem to be the perfect variety for this particular application.
  • Look for symmetrical pumpkins so you don’t end up with the leaning tower of pumpkin on your table. You should be able to see if a pumpkin is particularly unbalanced and you can always use a paper bag to help you judge how flat a platter would sit on the pumpkin.

Finally, choose your serving platter wisely. A heavier platter grounds itself nicely on to the pumpkin so you avoid accidental tipping.

Pumpkins as pedestals were such a fun way to mix up my fall table this year and my guests really enjoyed the touch of whimsy they brought to the table. I’m expecting they’ll reappear on my table next fall…as if by magic.

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