From beach box galley kitchens to spacious, open-concept kitchens with dine-in islands, there are loads of kitchen design styles and layout options available for your new construction home or kitchen remodel. Whether you want to understand your options or gut your kitchen out to a barebones state, here are seven of the most popular kitchen layout types for Outer Banks homes.
Each kitchen layout design may work better in different homes over others, depending on the total space available and the individual needs of your home’s owners. Consider your cooking habits and lifestyle preferences when selecting a layout.
7 Ideas for Kitchen Layout Design
There are seven main types of kitchen layout designs: Island, Open-Floor Plan, Galley, One-Wall, L-Shape, U-Shape, and Peninusla or G-Shape. The size and shape of the room your kitchen will be in determines what layout you want to use.
Many variants and styles exist for kitchen layouts. Most formats are inspired by the following seven. Some designs can combine and incorporate elements and benefits of each.
If you are unsure of what layout will work best in your dream kitchen our Outer Banks design-build construction company can help you decide.
Island Kitchen Layout
If you have enough space you can incorporate an island into almost any kitchen layout design. The multi-functional island kitchen can be used for meal prep, eating, and a workstation for the kids, guests, and yourself.
An island kitchen layout may be for you if you can have at least 36 inches on all sides of the island to allow for optimal appliance opening and closing.
You can get creative by installing specialized surface countertops on your island. Granite is a popular material for kitchen islands, but engineered composite tops and butcher block wood are also options you can consider. Custom features such as electric ovens, cooking surfaces, microwaves, and extra cabinet space can also be added to kitchen islands to make the space functional.
The versatility of the kitchen island requires thorough design and planning. Depending on the special additions you use to enhance the area you may require special plumbing or electrical work.
Open Floor Plan Kitchen Layout
In an open floor plan kitchen, the cooking area is integrated into the living or dining rooms. Open layouts are popular in new-construction homes as homeowners and guests enjoy the seamless flow between the spaces.
Open kitchen designs are great for large families and homes that need a lot of space to entertain. Since homes with open-concept kitchens have few and sometimes even no interior walls dividing rooms the area is entirely open creating one big, great room.
Many home kitchen renovations and remodels incorporate an open-plan kitchen to maximize their gathering areas, allow for natural light and airflow, and unify their home’s design. The process can be less complex than building an addition where zoning restrictions and local regulations can create complications in your project.
You can check out one of our most recent open-floor-plan kitchen remodels on the Outer Banks here.
Galley Kitchen Layout
Galley Kitchen layouts may have the most connection to the Outer Banks than all the other kitchen layouts. The name galley comes from the cooking area of large ships where space is historically limited.
Also known as corridor kitchens, galleys are typically long and narrow with a walkway space between two parallel walls of cabinets and counters. The galley kitchen can provide functional and efficient space for kitchens with limited space.
Galley kitchen layouts are recommended for rectangular spaces. The layout is typically found in smaller homes with one cook or where there is not enough space for an open concept or island kitchen.
Appliances, like your stove and refrigerator, are installed on opposite walls to allow for easier access when multiple people are in the kitchen.
One-Wall Kitchen Layout
One-wall kitchens, or kitchenettes, are a very practical kitchen layout choice for smaller homes. The kitchen’s appliances, cabinets, sink, and countertops are installed on one wall only.
The practical kitchen layout can provide an open and airy feel if installed efficiently. Placement of appliances and kitchen items should be positioned so as not to disturb the area’s workflow.
Be mindful of how doors open if you choose the one-wall kitchen layout. You do not want your refrigerator door opening into your kitchen sink and cutting off everyone’s access while the appliance is in use!
L-Shaped Kitchen Layout
As the name suggests, L-shaped kitchens feature counters, cabinets, and appliances arranged in the shape of the letter L. You can find L-shaped kitchen designs in many homes as the layout is very versatile and works great in small to medium-sized kitchens.
L-shaped kitchen layouts are the most functional design. Here two adjoining walls run perpendicular to each other. The length of each wall creates the “legs” of the L that can vary with available space.
Typically the sink, stove range, and appliances are placed along the longer wall to make the area nice and open. The layout encourages free movement around the kitchen and the rest of the home as they generally open into another room such as the living room or dining room making it easier to communicate and interact with guests while still in the kitchen
L-shaped kitchens are great for homes that entertain regularly or have more than one person in the kitchen. The flexible shape of the legs makes the kitchen layout suitable for both large and small homes.
Sometimes you can have enough space in an L-shaped kitchen to add an island that can double as a workspace for food preparation, shared meals, and even homework help.
U-Shaped Kitchen Layout
U-shaped kitchens are similar to L-shaped kitchens but with even more counter and cabinet space on the opposite wall of the kitchen. As one of the most versatile designs for both large and small spaces, U-shaped kitchen layouts have appeared in homes for over 90 years and probably will not be going out of style anytime soon.
Unlike, L-shaped kitchens that use two adjoining walls, the U-shaped kitchen uses three walls to create a natural triangle of work zones in the kitchen. Each zone dictates where the sink, stovetop, and refrigerator are placed to maximize space, accommodate multiple cooks, and allow for easy movement between workspaces.
Installing cabinets and counters on all three walls of a U-shaped kitchen can increase storage space. Corners can be maximized with custom organization additions such as pull-outs storage, breadboxes, and lazy susans, so every inch of the space is utilized.
If an open floor plan kitchen is more your style, the three-wall layout may not be best for you. U-shaped kitchens provide a distinct separation between the kitchen and the rest of the house.
Peninsula or G-Shaped Kitchen Layout
G-shaped kitchens or peninsula kitchens are a variation of U-shaped kitchen layouts. In G-shaped kitchens, an additional counter or peninsula is attached to the U-shaped layout to form the shape of the letter G to provide even more storage space with the introduction of a partial fourth wall.
Peninsula kitchens are different from island kitchens as the island is connected to the wall. The variation extends to create a main counter or wall for extra counter and storage space.
G-shaped kitchens and peninsulas work well in open floor-plan homes and can allow two or more cooks to work independently of each other. You can add a supplemental sink for a wet bar or even a breakfast bar for extra seating and entertainment.
How to Decide on a Kitchen Layout Design
If you are trying to decide on a kitchen layout when designing a new kitchen or planning a renovation, you need to understand how each kitchen layout design works. Each layout will work better in different homes depending on the total space available and the individual needs of the owners.
Kitchen cabinetry, furniture, appliance placement, and workflow movement, need enough space for you to comfortably move and enjoy the room. The overall floor plan of your home will ultimately determine the layout of your kitchen, but you can always optimize the area to be more practical for daily use and search for new home construction trends that appeal to you!
Depending on how often you cook, the number of cooks in the household, the style of cooking, the appliances used, and the amount of storage required, you can maximize functionality and create a space that meets all of your needs.
Contact our design-build team to start creating your own custom kitchen layout design for your Outer Banks home.