Kitchens have evolved greatly over the years. From design to function, how we used to build and work in kitchens has evolved to offer a variety of options for the style and size of a home. How your kitchen is designed and used all starts with the layout chosen. When you are looking at homes to buy or considering remodeling your own kitchen, the layout is the most important thing to start with. The details can of the kitchen can be changed fairly easily, but the layout will dictate the traffic, functionality, and comfortability of the space. Here are seven kitchen layout options and how they work in different types of kitchens.
For smaller homes or tight kitchen clearances, the one-wall kitchen design is the most popular design because it saves so much space. Instead of dividing up the kitchen work areas across a room, the one-wall layout places all utilities, cabinets, counters, and appliances against a single wall in the kitchen. This leaves a large open space in front of the counter for working, traffic, or furniture. Usually, a one-wall kitchen will arrange the appliances with the sink in the middle for central cleanup with the stove and refrigerator on either side. This can eliminate counter space, so it is wise to add a table or island if there is enough room.
The galley layout, also known as a walk through kitchen, is another great design for smaller kitchens. There are two parallel walls that make up a galley kitchen with limited space between them. This allows chefs to move quickly between food prep tasks. The galley style kitchen is very utilitarian and perfect for home where there is a dining room and mainly one person cooking. Galley kitchens are also very affordable since they make use of every inch of space so you don’t have to find design solutions for awkward corners.
The L-shaped kitchen layout takes those awkward corners the galley kitchen worries about and uses them to its advantage. It takes the advantages of the one-wall kitchen by placing all counters, cabinets, and appliances against the wall, but spreads them out into an L-shape to use the corner of the kitchen space. This provides extra counter space that the one-wall kitchen can’t provide while maintaining plenty of walking space for kitchen traffic. The walking space can also be used for an island, dining table, or any other piece of furniture to utilize the space better.
The U-shaped kitchen layout takes the L-shape one step further by using three walls to place counters, cabinets, and appliances. This takes advantage of the same idea the galley layout provides where a cook can move between food prep tasks quickly and easily. The U-shaped kitchen is great for small to medium sized kitchens and is often centered around an island or some other food prep station in the middle.
The G-shaped kitchen layout is very similar to the U-shaped layout, except it adds an extra edge. Instead of a large opening to walk into the U-shaped kitchen, the G-shaped kitchen takes a portion of the opening space to add a peninsula. People who chose the G-shape design don’t have enough room for an island in the center of the U-shaped kitchen, so the peninsula adds a good workspace alternative.
Island or Peninsula
The island or peninsula can be added to most kitchen layouts to break up open space or add a workspace or seating area. As we mentioned in previous layouts, the island works well in U-shaped and L-shaped kitchen layouts that need that extra countertop for meal prep. A peninsula can work well in nearly any kitchen as it adds a small countertop in the opening of the kitchen for additional seating or workspace.