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Kitchen Floor Plans

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Peninsula. A peninsula kitchen is basically a connected island, converting an L-shaped layout into a horseshoe, or turning a horseshoe kitchen into a G-shaped design. Peninsulas function much like islands but offer more clearance in kitchens that do not allow appropriate square footage for a true island. Download a sample floorplan.

Island. A working kitchen island may include appliances and cabinetry for storage—and it always adds additional work surface to a kitchen. It can provide a place to eat (with stools), to prepare food (with a sink) and to store beverages (with a wine cooler). The island can turn a one-wall kitchen into a galley style, and an L-shaped layout into a horseshoe.

This layout also is good for multiple cooks and helpers because there is plenty of counter space for all. Guests who aren’t helping can share the island with those who are.

The refrigerator sits in a corner accessible to everyone. A beverage station equipped with another sink, a built-in coffeemaker, and a wine cooler fills the short end of the U, with an eating area off the open end of the U.

Stealing a couple of feet from the adjacent garage made this kitchen wide enough for an island, which holds the cooktop in a central spot. Downdraft ventilation eliminates the need for a hood, which would have put a visual barrier in the middle of the room.

A U-shape perimeter around an island is a popular kitchen layout, and the two long legs of the U in this 15×19 room are especially long, sized to keep pace with the island in the middle.

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Work Triangle Pros: Pivoting from fridge to sink to range is seamless and super efficient. That’s the whole idea behind this concept. It’s a classic, tried-and-true kitchen layout that comes into play within all other kitchen layouts.

View in galleryWork Triangle Description: This is the layout many of us grew up hearing about as the holy grail of all kitchen layouts. It’s a classic, actually. In essence, the ideal work triangle layout is to have the primary and most-used appliances (e.g., fridge, range, sink) at corner points of a triangular workspace for maximum efficiency. Basically, you want to minimize the time and effort spent moving between said appliances.

Single Wall Kitchen Description: A kitchen in which all appliances, cabinets, and counter spaces are positioned along one wall. Single wall kitchens are usually found in small homes, because they are small yet efficient spaces that can be disguised as needed in a small space (read: studio apartment or similar).

U-Shaped Kitchen Description: The U-shaped kitchen is a fairly modern concept, having evolved over time as kitchen-area storage needs increased. This kitchen design is like a glorified galley kitchen, with one end closed off.

Still, these tried-and-true kitchen layouts still apply to today’s lifestyles—with modifications.

With the kitchen open to the dining room and family room, the island naturally attracts guests, but its mass shields the cooking area. Standing at the sink, the cook enjoys views through the dining room window. And the refrigerator’s position allows family members and guests to grab things out of the refrigerator without entering the cooking zone.

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This L-plus-island layout is the epitome of efficiency and simplicity. The island sink, range, and refrigerator form a perfect right triangle, allowing the cook equal access to the three main kitchen elements.

The sink shares a second wall with the dishwasher, forming a convenient cleanup zone.

This is a galley-plus-island setup, in which the single wall of the classic galley kitchen is paired with a parallel island. The result is step-saving efficiency with openness.

Unlike galley kitchens of old, which tended to be wedged in the back of a home, this 10×11 kitchen is part of a great-room floor plan that includes a living room, dining room, and family room.

A narrow table in the middle doubles a slender island, offering seating for two and acting as a way station between the perimeter zones. The storage wall features floor-to-ceiling pantry cabinetry and shelves for cookbooks and office/desk equipment.

The range is a focal point, too, anchoring one wall and flanked by tall storage units for pots and pans, spices, and oils. One wall features a refrigerator at each end, with a small prep sink and lots of counter space in between. This breakfast/coffee station means guests can serve themselves without invading the cook’s regular space. The opposite wall, with a full sink, is the everyday prep and cleanup zone.

This is a rare P-shape plan, which is appropriate given that its distinguishing element — a peninsula — starts with that letter of the alphabet. The peninsula links an L-shape perimeter portion with the opposite wall and an island. One wall of the L is the cooking zone, where a cooktop mounts above two built-in ovens. The other wall of the L is the cleanup zone, anchored by the main sink and the dishwasher.

Kitchen Zones Pros: Several people can work effectively in the kitchen simultaneously, without getting in each other’s way. Also, the zoned kitchen tends to be organized and efficient because each section is devoted to a specific task.

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The working kitchen is an L-shape perimeter augmented by a small island. The refrigerator, dishwasher, sink, and range sit in the long leg of the L, while the short leg offers unbroken counter space. The island, next to the fireplace, offers additional work space and storage. Traffic between the kitchen and dining area flows naturally around the fireplace.

Food is the focus of most kitchens, but in this one, eating literally takes center stage — a dining table and chairs sit smack dab in the middle of the nearly square 16×15 space.

This 15×20 kitchen employs the L-shape-with-island layout that has become popular in contemporary design. The configuration accommodates a long island while enclosing the kitchen on only two sides, leaving the room mostly open to adjacent living areas. In this case, a partial wall separates the kitchen from the dining room. The two spaces retain their visual identities, yet there’s easy movement between them, a boon for entertaining.

Single Wall Kitchen Pros: Ingredients, appliances, and food prep space all tend to be within easy reach in a single wall kitchen layout.

One end of the interior wall features an eating bar that links the kitchen to the adjacent family room. At the other end of the kitchen, a doorway leads to the formal dining room.

The range, housed in a separate niche, is the cook’s domain, located safely away from the busiest traffic routes. The cook and guests can smoothly converge at the island, with one side housing the sink and dishwashers, and the other offering seating for casual diners.

The sink, dishwasher, and cooktop line the exterior wall, while the refrigerator, wall ovens, and microwave occupy the opposite wall. Windows above both the sink and the cooktop treat the cook to natural light and pleasant scenery.

Galley Kitchen Tips: Keep both ends of the galley kitchen open to bring in more natural light and create connections to the rest of the house. Another tip is to put the sink and cooktop on one side of the galley to keep the messes contained.

Work Triangle Tips: Keep the work triangle fairly tight, regardless of the size of your kitchen, so as to preserve some energy for dining and interacting with loved ones over the food when it’s done.

A U-shape layout often opens to an eating area or a family room, but in this 21×13 kitchen, the U faces an impressive wall of storage. The U features the range on one wall, the refrigerator and wall ovens on another, and the sink and dishwasher set beneath a large window.

“We have gone from the traditional kitchen, where one person prepared meals to a multi-purpose room and a multiple-cook room, and this evolution has changed us from looking at one work triangle to multiple triangles, or ‘zones,'” says Mary Jo Peterson, principal, Mary Jo Peterson Inc. “With that in mind, we have to increase clearances and look at adding comfortable spaces in the kitchen.”

Few people want their kitchen completely closed off from the dining room, but not everyone wants the two spaces to be completely open to each other either. This plan finds a good middle ground, using a dividing wall to set a clear boundary between the kitchen and dining room while maintaining some openness in the 18×12 footprint.

Architecture often dictates the shape of the kitchen. In this case, the owners wanted to preserve their 18th-century home’s massive fireplace, so they created a 35×26 combined kitchen and dining area that flows around the two-sided hearth and adjoins the living room.

In a kitchen broken up by several doorways, the solution was an island-based layout that divides the 22×13 space into five zones: cooking, food storage, baking, breakfast, and meal prep/clean up. Wide traffic lanes throughout promote easy movement to and from the kitchen, as well as around the island.

The layout of this spacious kitchen was determined by the location of the only window, which brightens a cleanup zone that includes an extra-large sink and two dishwashers.

With an island and eating area in its middle, this 26×19 kitchen (in a rough U-shape floor plan) is geared for people and performance. Function is focused on an L-shape section that includes the refrigerator at one end, a double oven on the other, and the sink and dishwasher about halfway between.

The home’s kitchen layout includes a spacious center island with sink that helps to define the open kitchen from the rest of the home’s great room.

Work Triangle Cons: The work triangle can become tricky business, perhaps even counterintuitive, in larger kitchens and those with islands. It’s important to see the forest through the trees in planning this type of kitchen layout.

A wide traffic zone follows the perfectly square perimeter of the 16×16 kitchen, which opens to the dining room at one end.

One hardworking wall holds the refrigerator, cooktop, and a wall oven, as well as a pass-through to the adjacent family room — a handy feature when entertaining or serving snacks at family gatherings.

Single Wall Kitchen Cons: Due to their small size and the traditional appliances requirements, single wall kitchens tend to be very limited in counter space. Food prep and multiple cooks pose a challenge.

Galley Kitchen Cons: In galley kitchens, it’s preferable to have the sink and range on opposite sides, for greater efficiency; however, this kitchen layout tends to disrupt the flow. Also, there is no inherent space for dining or “hanging out” with family and friends, as is provided in many other kitchen layout designs.

L-Shaped Kitchen Cons: L-shaped configuration tends to allow for less space in the kitchen, significantly limiting the number of people in the kitchen at all. This layout could also function awkwardly, depending on the length of the L’s legs.

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The sink, dishwasher, refrigerator, and microwave are all right next to each other on the same wall, with the cooktop on the island. The island provides lots of counter space, as well as seating and a wine cooler.

The refrigerator and microwave are set opposite the cook’s side of the island: convenient during meal prep, but also easily accessible to those just seeking snacks and beverages. A walk-in corner pantry is roughly equidistant to the range, island, and refrigerator, leaving a short commute for comestibles.

The restaurant approach is appropriate given how the island includes diner-style seating on one side, with a table for 6 or 8 just behind the stools. From the cook’s perspective, the range, refrigerator, and island sink form a tight triangle, and the pot-filler faucet over the cooktop saves steps, too.

By surrounding a center island with more than an L but less than a full U, this 14×21 floor plan is able to provide long stretches of countertop space and a wide opening to the adjacent dining room.

Horseshoe. The horseshoe, or U-shape, kitchen layout has three walls of cabinets/appliances. Today, this design has evolved from three walls to an L-shaped kitchen with an island forming the third “wall.” “This design works well because it allows for traffic flow and workflow around the island,” says Mary Jo Peterson, principal, Mary Jo Peterson Inc. “You can get more cooks into the kitchen.” Download a sample floorplan.

The working part of this kitchen is an efficient two-wall galley, with the refrigerator, cooktop, and wall ovens set opposite the sink. But the sink wall “floats” islandlike in the middle of the room, attached to a cozy banquette that resembles a restaurant booth and is positioned to take in garden views. It offers a wealth of storage on each end, including a place for the microwave.

For casual meals, a small eating area takes advantage of window views at one end of the room. Formal occasions move to the nearby dining room, and the open space between it and the kitchen is ideal mingling space for guests.

U-Shaped Kitchen Cons: The U-shaped kitchen is designed for one primary cook; this type of kitchen layout is off the beaten path, so to speak, requiring a specific reason to enter. The U-shaped kitchen is traditionally pretty small and offers no dine-in arrangement. Plus, placing the dishwasher close to the sink (ideal setup) can be difficult.

A two-level island completes the 13×18 kitchen, providing prep space for the cook and an eating/beverage bar for guests. From the island, the cook can see into the living and dining areas thus staying part of the action.

L-Shape. An L-shaped kitchen solves the problem of maximizing corner space, and it’s a smart design for small and medium sized kitchens. The versatile L-shaped kitchen consists of countertops on two adjoining walls that are perpendicular, forming an L. The “legs” of the L can be as long as you want, though keeping them less than 12 to 15 feet will allow you to efficiently use the space.

Looking for some kitchen layout ideas? Got a small kitchen and need to maximize every inch? Got a huge kitchen and need to optimize the expansive layout? Got a tired old kitchen that you need a fresh kitchen layout design? Then this article is for you.

Here’s a guide to the pros and cons of the most popular kitchen layouts.

The adjacent wall incorporates the range, while the refrigerator and separate freezer are paired on the other side of the room. An island with seating, a microwave, and a warming oven bridge the distance between the walls.

One-wall. Originally called the “Pullman kitchen,” the one-wall kitchen layout is generally found in studio or loft spaces because it’s the ultimate space saver. Cabinets and appliances are fixed on a single wall. Most modern designs also include an island, which evolves the space into a sort of Galley style with a walk-through corridor. Download a sample floorplan.

Learn about different layouts, like L-shaped, one-wall and galley kitchens, and download templates for your renovation.

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The island is practically a kitchen unto itself, with a sink, dishwasher, refrigerator drawer, warming drawer, and microwave, in addition to seating at one end. It’s a great place for kids and guests to help themselves while the serious cooks work on the two long walls. One of those walls is for cooking — it holds the cooktop and separate oven — while the opposite wall is for cleanup, home to the main sink and dishwasher.

When it comes to function, the U-shape perimeter is no slouch, either. It incorporates two sinks, the dishwasher, the refrigerator, and the wall ovens in addition to plenty of counter space.

This plan takes the L-plus-island idea and gives it a tweak by abbreviating the short leg of the L and making it even with the outside edge of the island. This creates an express lane for traffic moving through the 12×18 kitchen on the way to the family room while shielding cooks and helpers as they move among the sink, dishwasher, range, and refrigerator.

Kitchen islands are incredibly functional, but the No. 1 misperception about islands is that everyone ought to have one. The reality is, many kitchens simply don’t have enough clearance to include this feature. Download a sample floorplan.

Kitchen Zones Cons: There will always be overlap among the zoned functions, so this might not actually be as fluent a kitchen layout design in reality as in theory.

Single Wall Kitchen Tips: Typically, the sink sits in between the range and fridge in a single wall kitchen, for easy cleanup (not to mention aesthetic balance). Consider opting for compact or custom (smaller) appliances to maximize the limited space. Also, throw in an island opposite the single cabineted wall for a great storage, efficiency, and people-gathering option.

This basically U-shape layout combines galley efficiency and intimacy with the openness of contemporary plans.

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The opposite wall consolidates food storage, placing the separate refrigerator and freezer at one end, and pantry storage at the other. A prep sink occupies the middle ground. The peninsula section is clear counter space, though the microwave is mounted below. The island, set outside the working area, accommodates casual meals, conversation, and homework.

At 11 feet wide, the space was too narrow for the typical island, but what it lacks in breadth, the kitchen makes up for in its 20-foot length. This allows the long wall to pack in the cooktop, dishwasher, sink, and oven, while the slightly shorter wall accommodates separate refrigerator and freezer units, as well as a welcome stretch of prep space. A banquette eating area at one end makes efficient use of perimeter space and draws on light and views from the window.

Kitchen Zones Tips: Consider the principles behind the Work Triangle between the zones themselves. For example, plan the food prep zone to be near the food storage and cooking zones, while the cleaning zone would work well near the kitchen storage zone.

The traditional work triangle that separates the sink, range and refrigerator has evolved into a more practical “work zone” concept.

Learn about different types and use our checklist to see if this independent structure will work for you

U-Shaped Kitchen Pros: The U-shaped kitchen provides tons of counter space, in addition to lots of cabinet space, since the cabinets surround three of the four walls in the kitchen. This type of kitchen layout also connects to the rest of the home by keeping one side open.

The shape of this floor plan is something more than an L but not quite a U. Functionally, the layout is more of a galley. And the space is notable for its lack of an island.

The cooktop takes up one side of the island, but the other is for seating, giving guests a great view of the action. The eating area offers more seating and casual dining space.

The working part of the 15×18 kitchen opens into an eating area, creating a setup for casual meals or parties. For more formal occasions, a doorway to the adjacent dining room eases serving and cleanup.

The dividing wall, which holds the dishwasher, extends from an L-shape perimeter. One leg of the L is home to the refrigerator and range, while the other provides prep space around the sink, highlighted by angled windows. The dividing wall extends to the ceiling, but it includes a large pass-through to the dining room in the middle as well as two-way cabinets on either end.

View in galleryGalley Kitchen Pros: The galley kitchen is a highly efficient kitchen layout, maximizing a typically small, cramped space with alternating appliances, cabinetry, and counter space. It’s so popular in its efficiency, in fact, that the galley kitchen is the primary kitchen layout design for most restaurants.

The long L trades the traditional work triangle approach for widely separated zones — one for cooking, one for prep/clean up, and one for food storage. The island acts as a way station — an intermediate stop between zones.

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U-Shaped Kitchen Tips: Because the U-shaped kitchen allows for a great deal of flexibility in kitchen layout, don’t be afraid to be flexible in your usage. An island works well in the U-shaped kitchen to encourage interaction and provide dine-in capabilities. You could also turn part of one wall into a peninsula (instead of a full wall) by removing the upper cabinets and opening up the air space.

Kitchen Zones Description: The idea behind a “zoned” kitchen layout is that the kitchen will work best if divided into zones with different functions. For example, the zones could be food storage, food prep, cooking, eating, cleaning, and kitchen storage.

View in galleryGalley Kitchen Description: A galley kitchen, also known as a corridor-style kitchen, is essentially a kitchen in the shape of a hallway…and is one of the most efficient kitchen layouts for cooking. The galley kitchen is long and narrow, with two straight runs on either side. (These can be two walls, or they can be one cabineted wall and an island that creates the second galley “wall.”)

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L-Shaped Kitchen Tips: Easily maximize space and interaction (without having too many cooks in the kitchen) with an L-shaped kitchen and an island. This provides enough central storage that the actual L shape’s legs needn’t be miles long.

The kitchen is the heart of the home. You want it to have the best possible layout and functionality it can. Below, we’ll discuss several of the most common kitchen layouts and their pros and cons. Consider this article as a research supplement to your kitchen layout planner to be sure you’re designing the best possible space for you, your family, and your lifestyle.

Galley kitchens are typically intimate, but that doesn’t mean they have to be tiny. At 9×19-feet, this galley is long on space, but it maintains the style’s inherent efficiency.

The kitchen segues into an open dining area, turning the 25×15 rectangular room into an all-occasion cooking and gathering space that comfortably accommodates multiple cooks and guests.

A third wall caters to guests as well: It boasts a beverage station equipped with a sink, wine cooler, and icemaker.

Galley. This efficient, “lean” layout is ideal for smaller spaces and one-cook kitchens. The galley kitchen, also called a walk-through kitchen, is characterized by two walls opposite of each other—or two parallel countertops with a walkway in between them. Galleys make the best use of every square inch of space, and there are no troublesome corner cabinets to configure, which can add to a cabinetry budget. Download a sample floorplan.

Many U-shape layouts include an island in the center, but this 17×20 one features an island with a capital I. The large, I-shape island was designed to accommodate everything, whether a family-size breakfast or a buffet dinner. The cooktop is at one end, putting the chef in the seat of power, while the raised bar at the other end hides clutter from the adjacent dining area. The island also holds the microwave and wine cooler.

L-Shaped Kitchen Pros: The very nature of the L-shaped kitchen provides intrinsic privacy for food prep, being like a corner tucked away. However, it also provides great interaction with open concept spaces, as it inherently opens up into adjoining spaces such as the great room or other family-focused rooms. An excellent choice for entertaining.

With an L-shaped layout, you’ll eliminate traffic: The kitchen will not become a thoroughfare because it’s just not logistically possible. Plus, you can easily add a dining space and multiple work zones to this layout. However, avoid this layout if your kitchen is large and can support other configurations, such as adding an island, or if multiple cooks will be using the space. Download a sample floorplan.

The layout is clearly zoned, with the refrigerator and pantry forming a food-storage area, the sink and dishwasher paired for cleanup, and the range anchoring the long cooking/prep wall. The microwave is tucked into the cook’s side of the island.

The island is a shared buffer zone, providing counter space on the cook’s side and seating on the other for guests, spectators, and casual diners. A short pass-through between the kitchen and dining room serves as a butler’s pantry. It includes a wine cooler and storage for bottles and glasses.

L-Shaped Kitchen Description: The L-shaped kitchen is precisely what its name implies. It’s a corner kitchen, which tends to lead to less kitchen traffic (because it’s “off the beaten path”). This kitchen layout typically involves one main wall of cabinets and sink or range perpendicular and adjacent to another, shorter wall.

The island is framed by generous stretches of countertop space, including one wall that accommodates the sink, dishwasher, refrigerator, and microwave. This consolidation of essentials — all opposite the cooktop — saves steps for the cook.

Take a galley-plus-island plan, add a third parallel section — a long dining table — and you get a trifecta of kitchen efficiency in a 17×22-foot space. The design is based on the 40-inch rule adopted by some restaurants: With 40 inches between counters, a person only has to take one step and make a pivot to get to the next counter.

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