Everything about designing a kitchen layout

Some say the kitchen is ‘the heart of a home’ and undoubtedly an essential space where you not only prepare food but also gather with family and friends. Whether cooking is a hobby or a bare necessity, a kitchen facilitating it is key!

Creating a functional kitchen layout means considering the size and placement of appliances such as the refrigerator, stove, and sink. Make sure to coordinate these and other appliances with the casework design to achieve a seamless kitchen!
Dimensions 📏
Rules Of Thumb 👍
Layout Examples ✏️
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  • Kitchen Casework Modules
  • Refrigerator Dimensions
  • Stove & Cooktop Dimensions
  • Kitchen Sink Dimensions
  • Kitchen Appliances Dimensions

Kitchen Casework Modules

Kitchens are dynamic and come in many styles, shapes, and sizes, depending on the space layout and the user’s personal preferences. The casework of a kitchen is either made by a dedicated kitchen company or custom-made by a carpenter.
The average size of one casework module is 60X60 cm, while 30x60 cm to 80x60 cm units are often incorporated in a kitchen as well to allow various use cases.

Refrigerator Dimensions

Refrigerator sizes, shapes, and finishes vary according to the supplier. A general benchmark for refrigerator dimensions is 60x65 cm - 70x120 cm, while mini bar sizes are approximately 40x45 cm.
Refrigerators can be roughly divided into two types: free-standing or integral. For free-standing refrigerators, make sure to allow ~7 cm from each side to open its door without clashing with the carpentry unit next to it. Integral refrigerators are embedded in the kitchen casework itself.

Stove & Cooktop Dimensions

Stoves and cooktops are embedded in the kitchen casework and can be purchased as one unit or separately. It is highly important to coordinate these fixtures according to the manufacturer's instructions, as they come in a variety of types and sizes, such as gas, electric, and induction cooktops and integral/free-standing stoves.
The average range of dimensions for a one unite stove and cooktop is between 30x50 cm - 60x80 cm.

Kitchen Sink Dimensions

Kitchen sinks come in various sizes. A benchmark range is approximately 40x45 cm for a small sink to 55x80 cm for a large one.
When planning a kitchen in detail, notice there are many types of sinks, such as drop-in sinks, under-mounted sinks, double bowl sinks, and more. Carefully coordinate the sink with the tap and kitchen countertop according to the manufacturer's instructions to ensure the result is seamless.

Kitchen Appliances Dimensions

It's recommended to pre-plan the locations of the various electrical appliances that will be used. For example, a microwave can be implemented in many ways: on the countertop, in the casework units, or even as a double feature of an oven-microwave appliance combined. Planning ahead and getting into the details will make for a seamless kitchen.
Above are some appliance dimensions benchmarks - make sure to look into the manufacturer sheet of the chosen appliance you will be implementing to get its exact dimensions.
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  • The ‘Kitchen Triangle’
  • Kitchen Clearance & Circulation
  • Kitchen Fixture & Appliance Spacing
  • Dishwasher Placement
  • Kitchen Windows & Door

The ‘Kitchen Triangle’

The kitchen triangle is a basic principle of kitchen design and is often used as a starting point when planning the layout of a new kitchen.
The three points of the triangle are the stove, refrigerator, and sink. These three fixtures should be arranged in a way that allows easy motion between them, minimizing the distance traveled and maximizing efficiency.

Kitchen Clearance & Circulation

Leaving enough room in front of a kitchen counter is crucial for smoothly operating when cooking for all kitchen typologies.
The minimal to spacious work zone in front of the kitchen counter is between 90 cm - 120 cm. The minimal circulation area to add to the kitchen usage zone is 75 cm. When integrating an island with chairs, allow for 75 cm behind it for comfortable seating.

Kitchen Fixture & Appliance Spacing

For ergonomic use and functionality, it is important to allow correct spacing between objects in a kitchen.
  • The minimal counter width from the side of a sink or cooking top to a wall or to each other should be 30 cm when designing a compact kitchen. For an average size kitchen and larger, the size should be at least 60 cm.
  • The gap between a refrigerator to a wall or casework should be ~0.7 cm rather than flushed to enable the opening of its door, depending on the fridge type.

Dishwasher Placement

When adding a dishwasher to a kitchen layout, remember to place it near the sink; this ensures a smooth workflow when rinsing and loading dishes.

Kitchen Windows & Door

Some rules of thumb for kitchen windows and doors are:
  • An open space living area that combines the kitchen with the dining and living room is great for enhancing a space. If you are dealing with a closed-room kitchen, make sure the door does not clash with the casework or appliances.
  • Placing a sink under a window is great for natural light, a view, and ventilation. But if you are implementing hinged windows, remember they require clearance for opening and closing, while rail windows are flushed with the wall and do not.
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  • U-Shaped Kitchen
  • L-Shaped Kitchen
  • Two Row Kitchen
  • Single Row Kitchen

U-Shaped Kitchen

A U-shaped kitchen maximizes the available space and provides ample storage and counter space. The U-shape also allows for a natural flow of traffic, making it easy to move around and access different parts of the kitchen. With cabinets and appliances on three sides, everything is within reach, making it a practical and efficient layout for cooks who love to have all their tools and ingredients easily accessible.
The U-shaped kitchen design is particularly well-suited for larger kitchens or open-plan living spaces, where it can act as a central hub for cooking, entertaining, and socializing.

L-Shaped Kitchen

An L-shaped kitchen offers a lot of versatility in terms of functionality and space utilization. With cabinets and appliances on two walls, the L-shape allows for a natural flow and provides plenty of counter space for food preparation, cooking, and baking.
This design is particularly useful for open-plan living spaces or small kitchens, as it maximizes the available space while still maintaining an open and inviting feel. Moreover, an L-shaped kitchen can include a dining island or table.

Two Row Kitchen

Two-row galley kitchens are a classic kitchen layout that features two parallel runs of cabinets and appliances. This design is popular for its efficient use of space and practicality, as it allows for a streamlined workflow and easy access to everything in the kitchen.
Two-row galley kitchens are particularly well-suited for small or narrow spaces, as they maximize the available space while still providing ample counter and storage space.

Single Row Kitchen

A single-row galley kitchen features all cabinets, appliances, and counter space aligned along a single wall. This type of design is ideal for small spaces, apartments, or studios, where space is limited.
While a single-row galley kitchen is compact, it can still be functional by incorporating different configurations and storage solutions available to maximize space and functionality. This layout also allows for easy flow between kitchen and living areas, making it a popular choice for open-plan living spaces.
‘If You Can Organize Your Kitchen, You Can Organize Your Life’ 🍳
Last modified 1mo ago