palate, palette, or pallet?

Feeling quizzical today?

I am.

Here’s a trio of terms that tend to trick the tongue and perplex the pen …

  • palate
  • palette
  • pallet

If you can’t match the following definitions with the words above, I have a fun exercise for you that I came up with so I can remember the spelling of each.

  • a wooden bed or flat platform onto which goods are loaded
  • the roof of your mouth or sense of taste
  • a flat board an artist mixes paint on or a range of colors

Take a guess, and then scroll down to find out how I remember these rascally words.

Palate: the roof of your mouth or sense of taste

(spelled plate with an a added)

“My palate is best served when I use a plate.”


Pallet: a wooden bed or a flat platform onto which goods are loaded

(Ma Mallet and Pa Pallet are a team)

“Bring me that mallet so I can take apart this pallet.”


Palette: a flat board an artist mixes paint on or a range of colors

(pal-ette smacks of French, well, because it is)

“The French artist was mixing paints on a palette while wearing a French barette.”

Photo by Jennifer Rensel via Wikimedia Commons

Photo by Jennifer Rensel via Wikimedia Commons


  1. Winnie Nielsen says:

    Genius way to remember the differences! This really helps because I always have to look groups of words like this up in the dictionary.

    • MaryJane says:

      Good morning Winnie! How are you?

      • Winnie Nielsen says:

        Good morning Mary Jane. I am doing great. Did you get the information I sent Brian last week in an email that I will be in Idaho near Couer d’Alene July 24 and 25? Yep, plane ticket, lodging, and rental car all reserved and paid for so I am officially Idaho bound!!! Whoop!! I am hoping you have some business need to be at your store one of those two days so I could meet you!! Is there any chance?? I am so excited to be coming your way and very much looking forward to seeing your store!!

        • MaryJane says:

          Let’s stay in touch and yes, I’ll be there one way or the other. Sooooooooo looking forward to meeting you in person.

          • Winnie Nielsen says:

            Whoop!!! Whoop!!! That is fabulous!!! I want to meet you in person so much too!! It will be great fun. Shall I contact you through Brian’s email as we get into July?? I can be flexible as to which day would be best for you. Yippeeee!!!!!!

          • MaryJane says:

            Yes, through Brian would be dandy.

  2. Eileen V Widman says:

    I loved this exercise! Maybe now I will remember and spell check can take a hike! I think spell check has only one version.

  3. Pingback: Sensory Overload | Raising Jane Journal

  4. Anne Wampler says:

    This was lots of fun and yes it made me put on my thinking cap for sure!!! Thank you

  5. Thanks, Darlin’. I do so appreciate your awareness and respect for words, punctuation and diction in general. As a former English teacher, I look for the ease of a well-composed sentence and rest nicely when I read one. You’re a leader in a hundred different areas. Keep going!

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