Tabletop Salad Bar Crate

Submitted by Ana White on Tue, 09/05/2017 - 15:23
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Build a tabletop salad bar for your home parties!  Perfect for weddings, showers, events or parties!  Easy to build, tutorial by

diy salad bar tray

I have been a long time user and fan of Rustoleum products.  This post is sponsored by Rustoleum by all opinions expressed are my own.

We've got a big party planned, and I've been stressing about the food for weeks.  The salads are always my favorite part, but when I pre-make salads, it's never the perfect solution - hopefully the guests like the salad and like all the ingredients.  If only I had a home salad bar!

Then I had a big fat ephiphany .... wait for it ....  I could BUILD my own salad bar!

I know you guys totally saw that one coming, but this DIY project turned out so well, it's hard to contain my excitement, and of course, I have to share how I built it!

I wanted my salad bar to look a little like a wood crate, but be simple enough.  So I picked up some square plastic disposable containers, these ones to be exact -

Available on Amazon (non-affiliate link here).

and figured out how big I would need to make the salad bar to fit six containers in a row.

Then I cut four 1x3s to this length.

Then I figured how far to space the rows appart to fit the disposable containers (can I call them tupperware already?)

And cut 1x4s to the overall length needed for the three rows including the 1x3 boards.

From there, I used my Ryobi AirStrike stapler with 1-1/4" staples to attach the 1x4s ends to the 1x3 dividers.

I then cut a piece of plywood scrap to the size of the bottom and stapled on with 1/2" staples.

Since I wanted to make the salad bar food grade, I used all new materials and pre sanded everything.  For a finish I choose Watco Butcher Block Oil & Finish

Easy wipe on application, safe for foot contact, great on wood cutting boards, butcher blocks and salad bowls ... it's perfect!

As advertised, the Watco Butcher Block Oil & Finish was easy to apply - just wipe on and wipe off.  I followed the directions and applied several coats, then cleaning with soap and water clean up.

Salad bar is done!

It was a huge hit and guests loved being able to make their own salads.

I left the center portion open for lettuce (one of those big salad packs filled it up) and the back open for dressings, croutons and extras.  The containers in front were perfect for carrots, cucumbers, grape tomatoes and more.

If you do end up using the same containers as me (do measure before you proceed though!), here is my cut list -


  • 4 - 1x3 @ 36"
  • 2 - 1x4 @ 18-1/4"
  • 1 - 1/4" plywood @ 19-1/4" x 37-1/2"


  • 1/2" and 1-1/4" narrow crown staples or brad nails (depending on your tool)
  • Narrow Crown Stapler or Brad Nailer
  • WATCO Butcher Block Oil & Finish
  • Square Disposable Containers for Food

If you do end up building, please share - it's always a day maker seeing how your projects turn out.

And pinning or sharing is always appreciated!

Have a great one, and do #BuildShareRepeat!

XO Ana



Sun, 07/21/2019 - 11:09

Great idea! My husband made this with a few tweaks: taller dividers to be even with the sides, smoothing of edges, and handles! It was perfect for our salad bar and pizza party!

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