The Dezeen Guide to Kitchen Layouts


Plan a kitchen? Our latest Dezeen guide explains eight of the most common kitchen layouts with links to lookbooks with hundreds of examples to inspire you.



Single wall kitchens

The single wall kitchen is the simplest floor plan with cabinets and countertops arranged along a single wall.

The arrangement takes up less floor space than other formations and is therefore popular both in smaller interiors and in larger, open spaces where the kitchen is integrated with a dining room or living room.

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L-shaped kitchen

L-shaped kitchens

As the name suggests, L kitchens are arranged in the shape of the letter L with two worktops connected at right angles.

The counters are often built into the kitchen corner, but can also have a worktop that protrudes into the room and forms a peninsula.

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U-shaped kitchens

U-shaped kitchens

U-shaped kitchens are formed from a trio of countertops that are connected in the shape of an open rectangle.

As one of the most popular kitchen layouts, the arrangement is often used in smaller homes as it creates an efficient work triangle with a stove, sink and refrigerator in close proximity.

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Pantry kitchens

Pantry kitchens

Named for the narrow area for preparing food on ships, galley kitchens contain two parallel rows of cabinets and countertops.

Another hugely popular layout that works well in tight spaces and, like the U-shaped kitchen, provides an efficient work triangle. In smaller homes, the kitchen layout is often combined with a dining area that is accessible from the kitchen.

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Peninsula kitchens

Shaped like the geographic feature they are named for, peninsulas extend from a wall or countertop into a kitchen to create additional countertop and seating.

Often used as a breakfast bar for casual dining, the elongated counters are often used in smaller kitchens that don’t have space for a freestanding kitchen island.

Read our lookbook for peninsula kitchens ›


Kitchens with islands

Many kitchens have a free standing counter height known as an island because it is separated from the kitchen walls.

The unit is usually rectangular in shape and usually includes additional storage space below and additional prep space above. They can often serve as a dining space with a breakfast bar.

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Combined kitchen dining room

Combined kitchen dining room

The integration of a kitchen with a dining area creates a multifunctional space for cooking, eating and socializing.

Dining rooms with combined kitchens are popular both in large houses, where they can be used as an open space for entertainment, and in small houses, where they save space.

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Kitchens with breakfast bar

Kitchens with breakfast bar

Breakfast bars, which are often integrated into kitchen islands or peninsulas, are extensions of a worktop that can be used as an informal space for dining or socializing.

Breakfast bars often serve as extra counter space to make efficient use of space and can be an alternative to a dining table in a small home. They can also be used as a convenient desk space for those who work from home.

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