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It can’t be said enough how kitchen island dimensions are an important part of a kitchen remodel job.  all want to make our houses the best that they can be.

Kitchen Island Dimensions


But did you know that homeowners spend an average of two hours a day or almost 800 hours each year in the kitchen? Yes, even if they don’t cook.

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The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recently updated the regulations on how many receptacles a kitchen can have. NFPA officials said, “The requirement is to install one receptacle outlet for the first nine square feet and then one for each additional 18 square feet or fraction thereof.”

What Is A Kitchen Island?

kitchen island dimensions
Lizzie O’Brien

The amount of work required to install a kitchen island doesn’t cost as much as a bedroom or living room but does require intensive labor. 

A kitchen island is a freestanding cabinet placed in the center of your kitchen. You should be able to walk around the cabinet and use it for a variety of purposes related to the kitchen.

Average Kitchen Island Dimensions

Traditional Kitchen in Phoenix
Calvis Wyant Luxury Homes

The most important part of a kitchen island side is the relativity to your kitchen. You will need at least 36-inches clearance for a comfortable kitchen with 42-inches being recommended for a comfortable kitchen.

Kitchen Island Height

The standard height for most kitchen islands is 36 inches. This is a good height because it is the same height as most countertops. Kitchen islands often look the best when they are the same height as the countertop of the cabinets.

Although the height varies depending on what the use for the island is. For example, if you are going to be standing at it more often, slightly higher is good. If you are going to add barstools, then allow two feet of clearance between the two.

Kitchen Island Width

Most kitchen islands are two to four feet wide, or deep. Two is a good minimum because any less than that and the island no longer serves a purpose. If you do have a narrow island, you can add to it.

In this case, you raise the short area that will be used for eating and add another area that is 36-inches high. They don’t even have to be attached or built-in, they can be separate areas that are pushed together.

Kitchen Island Length

The length of the kitchen island is very important compared to the other measurements because it doesn’t affect the quality of life as much. However, a minimum of four feet is usually the standard for kitchen islands.

If you want a long kitchen island then you should probably go for six feet or more. Any less than four feet and you have a three-foot island that is the same length as your stovetop, which may look odd.

Kitchen Islands For Dining

Farmhouse Kitchen

There are two types of kitchen islands. There are those that are designed for bars that will be used for displays and cooking activities then there are those that will be a designated eating place for the family.

Kitchen Island With Seating For Two

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This is a common island size if you want a small kitchen island. It will seat two people comfortably by adding two barstools. This is the minimum size for a kitchen island and is not a long kitchen island.

The kitchen island with seating for only two people will be four feet long. This is a standard kitchen island for small kitchens and works fine if you have two people that will sit at the island at the same time.

Kitchen Island With Seating For Three

Kitchen Island With Seating For Three

You can get by with a kitchen island, with seating for three people, that is five feet long, but this will be just a wee bit scrunched. It is often the standard for kitchen island sets that aren’t built-in though.

For built-in sets, you can expect about six feet long which is considered a long kitchen island. But you can’t get much longer than that or else the seating will look strange spaced out a foot apart or more.

Kitchen Island With Seating For Four

Kitchen Island With Seating For Four

Now if you have a very long or large kitchen and have a kitchen island then your island is probably at least six feet long, probably seven or eight-foot-long. It’s standard for each person to have at the very least 20-inches of space.

This is for narrow stools. For wider stools or actual chairs, more room is necessary. If you are lucky enough to fit an eight-foot-long kitchen island in your home then you are lucky and should take advantage of it.

Kitchen Island Projects To Inspire You

Traditional Kitchen in Nashville
Traditions in Tile

If you want a different kitchen island than the ones you see at every store, perhaps you need to design your own. You may want to build it from scratch and you may want to transform your old one.

Completely Custom Kitchen Island

Completely Custom Kitchen Island

Now, this kitchen island inspired me! Jen Woodhouse used 2x4s and 2x6s for the main frame before adding small slats for support shelves. 

She then added a 2×6 countertop and painted the entire thing. The end result is gorgeous with the dark shelves contrasting the light legs of the kitchen island. 

Transforming An Old School Desk

Transforming An Old School Desk

Have you ever thought about taking a piece of furniture that is made for one thing and using it for something else? Most people don’t think about something this drastic when they imagine repurposing something.

But that’s exactly what Old Country House did. They took an old desk and decided to transform it into a marble-top kitchen island with a pretty blue base. The transformation is so remarkable that you would never know where it came from.

Farmhouse Kitchen Island

Farmhouse Kitchen Island

Golden Boys And Me has inspired us with this farmhouse kitchen island. They started out with a simple IKEA bookshelf and ended up with a farmhouse kitchen island that anyone would be jealous of.

The best part is that it was a simple project that anyone can do too. All you need is a drill and you too can have this exact island. Or, use this as inspiration and transform your own piece of furniture.

Craigslist Kitchen Island Makeover

Craigslist Kitchen Island Makeover

There isn’t much that is more satisfying than finding a Craigslist item and transforming it into something worth ten times what you bought it for. This is just proof that you don’t need money to make your house look like a million bucks.

All that Fresh Mommy did was give this island a fresh coat of paint and added a new countertop. Pro tip? You can buy countertops on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace for next to nothing as well.

Sarah’s Endless Island Project

Sarahs Endless Island Project

Sarah of Thrifty Decor Chick lived up to her name with this kitchen island project. Or should I say these kitchen island projects? She is known for transforming kitchen islands over and over again.

She does it so often that it can be impossible to pick a favorite. The girl works with any type of decor and can make anything look good. If you are looking for general inspiration then look no further than this Thrifty Chick.

Cabinet To Island

Cabinet To Island

Did you know that you can take kitchen cabinets and transform them into a kitchen island? Most people didn’t! Classy Clutter does an amazing job of taking standard kitchen cabinets and creating an island.

When they finish, it’s hard to believe that what looks like an expensive Wayfair find is a kitchen cabinets that saved them a lot of money. Who doesn’t want to try this as soon as possible now?

Tiny Bookshelf Island

Tiny Bookshelf Island

Who said that high-end islands had to be big and flashy? Nevertheless, they were wrong. Ashley of Little Glass Jar turned a small bookshelf into an adorable kitchen island that we all need in our kitchen.

The best part about small kitchen islands like this is that they work for small or large kitchens. You can put it in the corner and use it as a roll-around cart or you can just get a taller one and put it in the center.

Classic Kitchen Island

Classic Kitchen Island

This classic kitchen island is amazing! Shades Of Blue really outdid themselves with this one. On their island, they made half of the island open shelving with attractive teak-like slats with the other half a trash holder.

No one likes their trash can out in the open but it often seems that anything else isn’t an option. This team figured it out by adding a compartment that will safely hold their trash without it being seen.

Paint Can Transform Island

DIY Kitchen Island Big Box Store Cabinets

You may not think that paint has enough power to transform a kitchen island. The primary thing that Artsy Chick Rules did to this island is painted it. The difference it made is astounding.

This just goes to show you that you don’t need a lot of experience or huge ideas to make a huge difference. You can start small and think outside the box and you can transform any kitchen island into something special.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ

What Is The Average Kitchen Island Size?

A standard kitchen island is 40 by 80 inches. The size of a kitchen island is determined by the space around it. With proper space, you can’t have a kitchen island.  

Do Kitchen Islands Have To Be Anchored?

It is not mandatory for a kitchen island to be anchored to the floor. However, if safety is a concern, anchoring the island to your floor will provide greater versatility. If you want a rolling kitchen island, they work best in small kitchens.  

What Is The Best Countertop For A Kitchen Island?

The best countertop for a kitchen island is stainless steel. With this countertop, you wouldn’t have to worry about rust or corrosion. Stainless steel is heat resistant, and won’t scratch or stain.

What Is The Standard Overhang For A Kitchen Island?

A kitchen island is the centerpiece of your cooking space. When installing an overhang, it must be perfect. An average countertop overhang is 1.5 inches.

Should I Install A Sink In My Kitchen Island?

A sink wouldn’t help your kitchen island. Clutter would become an issue, and before you knew it you’d have dirty plates stacked in your sink. Plus, they seem to be more trouble than they’re worth.

Kitchen Island Dimensions Conclusion

How much space you have will determine the size of your kitchen island. Truer words have never been spoken. If you follow the kitchen island size guidelines and you won’t have any problems.

Your counter space should have enough room for you to prepare meals. If you already have too much space, then an island would be a great idea for your kitchen. You could even add barstools and turn your island into an informal table where your family could sit comfortably and eat together.

After you’ve measured your kitchen, make sure you leave plenty of space for elbow room. Walking space is also important, so plan accordingly.
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