DIY Food Tray With Multiple Layers, Cutting Board, and Lazy Susan Features

How To Build A Three Tiered, Lazy Susan Cutting Board

A tri-level pedestal is a festive way to serve appetizers and desserts. The cherry-wood pedestal also works as a cutting board, and the addition of lazy Susan hardware lets each level spin individually.


This project uses cherry wood which may not be available in your area. If you have trouble finding it, there are woodworking retailers who sell hardwoods online, such as and

We also use three lazy Susan bearings, which can be found at some home centers as well as online woodworking retailers.

Step 1



Project Cut List

large blanks – five pieces at 3/4" x 3" x 15"
medium blanks – four pieces at 3/4" x 3" x 12"
small blanks – three pieces at 3/4" x 3" x 9"
pillars – eight pieces at 1 x1 x 5-3/4"

Step 2



Assemble the Blanks

Cut the large, medium and small blanks to length per the project cut list. These will become the three platforms of the pedestal.

Look at the end grain of each of the boards. You'll notice the grain pattern may have a curve, either up (looks like a smile) or down (looks like a frown). Position these so that the end grain patterns alternate between the smile (up curve) and the frown (down curve). Don't position two frowns or two smiles adjacent. This helps limit any buckling or curvature when gluing up the top.

Cut each of the 2x2 oak squares in half. Apply painter's tape to one face of each of the oak squares. You will use these as cauls when clamping the blanks.

Position bar clamps open on a level work surface and position the blanks on the clamps in the pattern you determined and with an inch or so between the parts. Apply glue to the joining edges, butt the parts together with the ends flush and clamp lightly in place.

Position the cauls' taped side against the blanks and butted against the bar clamps, and clamp lightly in place. Continue to tighten the clamps on the blanks and cauls making adjustments as needed. Allow the glue to set. Remove the clamps, scrape and/or sand off the glue from the joints. Repeat for each set of blanks.

Step 3

Cut the Platforms

Find the center of each of the platforms (formed from the blank glue-ups) using the guide (image 1). You will use this center point as a guide for cutting the platforms to shape.

Use a router fitted with a 1/4-inch straight bit and a circle cutting jig to cut each of the platforms to shape (image 2). Find tips for cutting circles with a router and instructions for making your own circle-cutting jig.

Cherry wood has a tendency to burn when cut, especially when removing large amounts of the wood at a time, take special care when routing the parts. Rather than sanding (and potentially ruining your perfect circle) you can make incrementally smaller passes with the router to remove burn marks.

Lightly sand the corners of each platform.

Step 4

Position Pillars

Mark diagonal lines on both ends of the pillars. The intersecting point is the center.

Drill pilot holes for 1/2-inch washer head screws centered on one end and pilot holes for 1-1/2-inch wood screws centered on the other end (image 1).

Use the center point on the platforms as a guide for marking the placement for the lazy Susan bearings. Center the 4-inch bearing on the 9-inch platform, the 6-inch bearing on the 12-inch platform, and the 12-inch bearing on the 15-inch platform. Mark the position of the screw holes and drill pilot holes for the 1/2-inch screws.

On the 1/2-inch pilot hole end of four pillars, position the opposite side of the 4-inch bearing from what was marked on the 9-inch platform to line up the screw holes, and attach using 1/2-inch screws (image 2).

Measure the width and depth of the outer edge of the pillars where they are attached to the bearing. Mark a square matching this dimension centered on the 12-inch platform. Position the pillars in this square, align them with the corners, and mark the outline of the pillars on the platform (image 3).

Step 5

Attach Pillars

Mark diagonal lines across the outline of the pillars – the intersection point is the center. Drill countersunk pilot holes for the 1-1/2-inch screws in the center point (image 1). Be sure the long point of the bit (not the countersink part) goes through fully.

Position the 4-inch bearing on the 9-inch platform, align the screw holes with the pilot holes, and attach with the 1/2-inch screws (image 2).

Drive the 1-1/2-inch screws through the countersunk holes in the 12-inch platform so that about 1/4-inch of the screws show. Position the pillars attached to the 9-inch platform on these screws (image 3).

Drive the 1-1/2-inch screws into the pillars until they are snug against the 12-inch platform (image 4).

Repeat these steps for attaching the 6-inch Lazy Susan bearing to the 12-inch platform and the remaining four pillars to the bearing and the 15-inch platform. Center the 12-inch lazy Susan bearing on the bottom of the 15-inch Platform. Attach self-adhesive rubber pads to the bottom of the 12-inch bearing.

Step 6

Add Finishing Touches

Place painter's tape around the perimeter of the pillars. Apply stain to the pillars, allow to dry and apply polyurethane per the manufacturer's directions.

Apply butcher block oil to the platforms and allow to dry per the manufacturer's directions.