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Kitchen Layouts Ideas For Each and Every Home

There are quite a few kitchen layouts out there for a modern homeowner to choose from. Their highly versatile shapes would fit into any room. And there are more peculiar ones too that look fresh and unexpected. To choose the right layout for your cook room make sure to take exact measurements of the area and create a few layouts on paper. All the angles, wall length, and pathways should be considered when choosing or creating a layout. There are kitchen layouts that are best suited for narrow and square rooms while some look great in rooms of any shape or size. Modern kitchen trends dictate simpler furnishings and clear lines whereas custom designs can offer surprising solutions for even the most boring layouts.

Galley Kitchen Layouts

Galley kitchen
Galley kitchen

Galley kitchen layout has the room divided into two parallel lines. This one is often seen in narrow rooms as it’s the most efficient way to use the wall and the floor space.

A pathway between the cabinets may be a bit narrow, but if it becomes too claustrophobic it’s best to go with a more modern single wall kitchen layout. Woodstock Kitchens & Joinery has styled this narrow kitchen in a Centennial Park House with built-in cabinets and a light color scheme.

Galley kitchen
Galley kitchen

The beauty of a galley kitchen is that even though it can be tight, you have everything within a hand’s reach. If you’re worried about the lack of seating space you could designate a small area for it at either end of the room.

Another compromise to make the galley kitchen feel less claustrophobic is to remove the top cabinets from one of the walls. This will visually open up space and make the kitchen feel roomier. This kitchen design from House Beautiful is a perfect example.

U-Shaped Kitchen Layouts

Mint u-shaped kitchen
Mint u-shaped kitchen via Better Remodeling

A U-shaped kitchen layout is the efficient way to use and organize storage space in a square room. There are cabinets on three sides of the room, so there is a lot of it to go around.

Smaller U-shaped kitchens may feel cramped, especially if you put a kitchen island in there, but with a bit more space they become truly convenient. This mint cottage style U kitchen opens up space further with a pastel color.

White u-shaped kitchen
White u-shaped kitchen

U-shaped kitchens also come with just the bottom cabinets on one of the sides. This makes for a more airy look, especially if there are windows in the kitchen.

With a U-shaped kitchen you also get a convenient work space where everything within a hand’s reach. This white kitchen by Steven Graver keeps two windows clear of cabinets and shelves.

L-Shaped Kitchen Layouts

L-shaped kitchen
L-shaped kitchen via Aswstone

L-shaped kitchen layout is a classic one. There are only two furnished walls and it can easily accommodate a kitchen island.

The top cabinets don’t visually clutter the space and you get a more airy, more spacious look even if your kitchen is small. This black and white L-shaped kitchen looks like a great use of space.


In fact, L-shape is perfect for smaller kitchens. There is enough space to walk around and to store kitchen utensils. It looks best in minimalist modern style.

The positioning is also very flexible as you don’t need two whole walls for an L-shaped kitchen. The kitchen in this Beach Avenue home by Schulberg Demkiw Architects looks tiny, but there is plenty of storage space and the glass doors create an outdoor/indoor feel in the area.

Wedge-Shaped Kitchen Layouts

Wedge-shaped kitchen
Wedge-shaped kitchen

Wedge-shaped kitchens are great for utilizing awkward angles and spaces without wasting any room. This is where you and your designer can and should be very creative.

For instance, in this Casa Fiore from McGarvey Custom Homes the wedge-shaped kitchen island repeats the shape of this corner kitchen and even the lighting system is shaped accordingly.

Wedge-shaped kitchen via Architat

This wedge-shaped kitchen is furnishing a wedge-shaped wall. The result is quite amazing. Albeit small the kitchen feels very open and airy as well as easy to move around.

The wedge-shaped kitchen island echoes the shape of the wall and the cabinets to create an efficient pathway that would become awkward with a rectangular-shaped table.

Polygonal Kitchen Layouts

Octagonal kitchen

Octagonal or hexagonal kitchens are a rarity and they require a lot of work, but they certainly look luxurious. Just look at this one in a Stunning Executive Estate.

Although building cabinets and countertops for such a kitchen would require careful measuring, the end result is simply stunning and impressive.

Corner Kitchen Designs

Corner kitchen
Corner kitchen via Delikatissen

Corner kitchen design is another way of saving space. The ability to use any corner for any part of the kitchen can also be quite liberating. You can play with your layout and visually open up the space.

Traditional kitchen cabinets can waste a lot of floor space or create more awkward angles. In this kitchen the angles are working to give it more room for walking and working.

Curvilinear Kitchen Layouts

Curvy kitchen island
Curvy kitchen island

Sometimes curves are just what your kitchen needs to become not only ultra-stylish but also convenient. Curvilinear kitchen layouts are convenient for a number of reasons.

One of them is that you can have any kind of shape built just for you, which will make your kitchen one-of-a-kind thing. Then you can also use space more efficiently by working with awkward angles. Venture Architecture designed this kitchen for a loft in Denver using a curvilinear kitchen island that seems to contain the entire kitchen.

Curvilinear kitchen layout
Curvilinear kitchen layout

Curvy kitchen islands vary greatly in shapes and designs. They don’t have to be extravagant, though. A simple semicircle makes all the difference in this kitchen by Inspired Dwellings.

It’s not just giving it an unexpected fresh look but also frees up a little walking space between a breakfast bar and a dining area.

Peninsula Kitchens

Peninsula kitchen
Peninsula kitchen

Peninsula kitchen layout is fitting for spacious rooms. You can keep your breakfast bar and your kitchen island separate. It does require more countertop material as you’d probably want a more uniform look, so it surely can be more expensive, hence, offering a more luxurious look.

Also a peninsula can provide additional storage space. Shawna Mullarkey shared her peninsula kitchen design with The Kitchn demonstrating how you can mix cottage style with ultra modern accents like those Lucite bar stools.

One-Wall Kitchens

White one-wall kitchen
White one-wall kitchen

One wall kitchens are becoming more and more popular in modern homes. Minimalist in both style and storage space these kitchens are for those who aced space-management. This minimalist kitchen by Architecture for London makes clever use of built-in lighting over the working surfaces.

If you don’t have enough space to go around, you should really think about this kitchen design trend. It might just make your small kitchen look more spacious.

One-wall kitchen
One-wall kitchen design

A single wall kitchen can be fully furnished or feature just the bottom cabinets and floating shelves. It’s all a matter of how much storage space you really need and how you manage it.

Downsizing isn’t such a bad idea even if your kitchen is spacious enough. Without all that cabinetry you’ll be able to enjoy a bigger dining area or a breakfast nook you’ve always wanted. Jason Arnold makes a case for a big dining table for six in this single wall kitchen with floating shelves.

Perimeter Kitchen Layouts

Black kitchen design
Black perimeter kitchen design via House Beautiful

While airier kitchen interiors are becoming more widespread, perimeter kitchens are also on the rise. If your room is spacious every wall can be furnished with cabinets to store everything from forks and spoons to big appliances like a coffee machine or a refrigerator.

There are obviously great advantages to this type of layout, but it definitely can make a smaller room look cramped. Designer Steven Miller took a bold step toward perimeter layout when designing this kitchen for a San Francisco Decorator Showcase. Also, how cool are those black cabinets?

Spacious kitchen
Spacious kitchen via House Beautiful

Of course, if you go with a design that breaks the constant flow of cabinetry, it will look better, more luxurious. This kitchen by Jeannette Whitson is definitely bigger than your average room, but the open areas allow it to look ultra chic.

If you are after storage space, though, you could go with the most minimalist design for cabinets that would help them blend with walls. Then you just might get away with a perimeter layout in a smaller kitchen.

Kitchens With Islands

Square kitchen
Square kitchen

Even though minimalist kitchens are getting trendier by the day, it’s still hard to imagine one without a kitchen island. Square, circular, rectangular – they are everywhere these days and are inseparable from kitchen cabinets, it seems.

It’s not surprising, though. A kitchen island is a multi-functional piece of furniture that can also accommodate a sink and a working surface. This square cook room designed by Doug Davis and Hannon Kirk Doody in Alabama features a square marble-topped kitchen island that echoes the shape of the room.

Dining table kitchen island
Dining table kitchen island

A dining table used as a kitchen island is the best idea for a small home that has no separate dining room/area, as designer Greg Natale demonstrates here. Sure it’s not as convenient to work on a dining table, but a spacious chopping block should make things easier. Besides the countertops of the bottom cabinets provide additional working surface.

Using a different piece of furniture as a kitchen island is a great alternative to a pricy kitchen addition and can be useful for recycling old furnishings.

Chelsea kitchen
Chelsea kitchen

A kitchen island that doubles as a breakfast bar is one of the more popular design solutions. It also doesn’t have to be big unless you planning to use it as a dining area.

Since you’ll need bar stools for your kitchen island, make sure to choose an appropriate island that would at least partially hide them. Your small kitchen can use all the help it can get to look less cramped and your pathways will always be clear of obstructions. Just take a cue from this Chelsea kitchen by designer Tyler Pankratz.

Double kitchen island
Double kitchen island via House Beautiful

A double kitchen island is surely a luxury addition, but there is a certain advantage to it. You can skimp on kitchen cabinets and still have enough storage space. One can be used for preparing food and the other one for eating.

There is a practical downside to this layout, however, as more floor space is required for two kitchen islands, but a spacious room with a low ceiling might benefit from it. In this spacious kitchen the designer Stephen Sills has also used bold floral William Morris wallpaper to fill out the spacious interior.

Custom Kitchen Layouts

Custom kitchen design
Custom kitchen design

Custom layout kitchens definitely look different and fresh. There are no predictable shapes or instantly recognizable catalogue solutions. Throw in bespoke cabinets and a personalized design and your kitchen could make it into any interior magazine. Of course, this is a luxurious investment, but you’re paying for a custom design that will not only make the most of available space but will also be out-and-outer.

Sarah Richardson, designer and host of HGTV’s Sarah’s House, has updated an old claustrophobic kitchen that now looks like a dream by removing a wall. Its custom layout now boasts an open bar counter and an adjacent dining area.

Choosing a kitchen layout can be daunting, but there are a few key principles that will help you make the right choice. First of all, certain layouts take more space than others. If your kitchen is small, avoid them if you can. Secondly, your layout should create pathways free of obstructions as well as awkward angles. Your budget will be a final determining factor, though. Some layouts require a lot of furnishings while others are best for budget-friendly kitchens.


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