How Much Space Do You Need?
Minimum space requirements in
kitchen planning are good guidelines to help you plan your kitchen. By
having enough space in the right areas you will greatly increase the
functionality of your kitchen
layout. As well as making
cooking a more
enjoyable experience. Why make it more of a chore than it has to be,
and if you love to cook why not make it better!
some of these minimum space requirements into consideration during the
kitchen planning process will help make your kitchen a much easier
place to work.
planning is very important to get right because you are going to live
with it for a long time. I recommend laying out your kitchen in the
actual space to get a good reference of how the space works for
What I mean by laying out your
kitchen space is to take the actual
cabinet measurements and cut them out of cardboard. Then place those
cut out pieces where you plan on having those cabinets.
Every kitchen needs a minimum of 10 feet of countertop space. If the
kitchen is over 175 square feet the minimum should be 17 linear feet. A
good rule of thumb is to have 1 lineal foot of counter to every 10
square feet of floor space.
- You could also have more
than one type of kitchen countertop, there are many to choose from.
Check out my pages on kitchen
countertop ideas, for more
- 42 inches minimum between
all permanent structures such as between the countertop and island.
- 48 inches is recommended
if more than one cook are regularly in the kitchen at the same time.
- Minimum of 36 inches on
both sides of the sink, 42 inches is preferred.
- Minimum 18 inches of
counter space by the refrigerator, on the handle side.
a good idea, but not necessary, to include a minimum of 24 inches of
cabinet storage for cookbooks, canned and dry goods near the prep area.
- Minimum of 24 inches on
both sides of the cooktop or range, but 30 inches is recommended.
storage should be the same as the countertop space in inches for the
cabinetry width. A pull
down rack from the
over-the-range cabinet will
utilize that space better.
ovens are not used very often, therefore if your kitchen is not very
large it's a good idea to put the ovens in a pantry or adjoining area.
are better when placed at countertop level to make it easier to use.
Microwaves over the range do double duty and can save space, but only
if no extra room is available on the countertop or if you really want
it over the range.
dishwasher is best placed as close to the sink as possible. Either side
is good but if you are right handed it's better to the right and visa
- You should also consider a
dishwasher, it may save you some
- Corner sinks are a good
way to get extra space.
your kitchen has a dishwasher a double bowl sink is not necessary. A
single bowl sink will allow for bigger pans to be placed into them for
- An island as a work area
should be a minimum of 3 x 4 feet.
- An island as a seating
area should allow for 24 inches per person.
- 42 inches all of the way
around an island, but 48 inches is recommended.
if the work area in the kitchen is on opposite sides, the island may be
more of an interference than a helper. Islands are recommended in
kitchens that are 14 feet wide, or larger, with a minimum of 150 square
feet of total kitchen floor space.
- Doorways should be no less
than 32 inches, but 36 inches is recommended.
- If for some reason a
swinging door is not practical a pocket door is a very good option.
- One doorway should be a
minimum of 36 inches to allow more room for moving appliances.
avoid a lot of hassle I recommend using an NKBA certified kitchen
planner to help you. The cost is minimal when compared to a lifelong
kitchen that doesn't quite meet your expectations. A kitchen planner is
there for just that reason, to help you get the best kitchen you can.