How To Make a Functional Tiny Kitchen

There is no reason to settle for less when it comes to making a tiny functional kitchen

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Bridget Houlihan


Jan 21, 2021

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The interest that tiny houses have cultivated has brought small kitchens out of the Dark Ages, creating an entire industry. Whether you live in a studio apartment or a little cabin, you can choose from various resources to make your tiny kitchen functional and efficient.

While the average kitchen is about 10’ x 10’, anything fewer than 70 square feet is considered a small kitchen. In large homes, kitchens usually average about 200 square feet. So entire tiny homes can fit inside a large kitchen!

Tiny houses with their minute kitchens are here to stay, though, and with the advent of things like pull-out shelves and small kitchen appliances, there is no reason to settle for less when it comes to making a tiny functional kitchen.


The first and best way to increase the functionality of your tiny kitchen is to create a great layout for a small kitchen. Usually, a U-shaped kitchen is the best for a tiny kitchen, but a galley-style kitchen can also be a good choice.

If you are remodeling, you might not have much choice when it comes to the layout, but there are many ways to get creative to utilize the space you have. You might even have enough room to add a small breakfast nook in an underutilized corner of the kitchen.  

Don’t think about the sacrifices you will have to make to have a small kitchen because you won’t necessarily have to sacrifice anything. You can still fit everything you need into a tight space. Be prepared to do a lot of research, though, and seek help from a professional designer if you need to.

No matter what layout you choose, make sure you have plenty of space between counters. For example, you will need a minimum of three feet of space between the counters in a double galley kitchen, and in a U-shaped kitchen with 2’ counters on each side, that means that you need it to be at least 7 feet wide.

Pull Out Shelves

The best way to utilize every bit of storage space that you have is to use pull-out shelves in your cabinets. Pull-out shelves are available for every type of cabinet, including those hard-to-reach corner cabinets. You can even find special under-sink caddies that help maximize the space under your sink.

It is a great idea to schedule a design session for cabinet pull-out shelves in Sacramento, CA, while you are still planning your tiny kitchen. These professionals have the experience to help you use every inch of your storage space.

A design appointment usually takes about 45 minutes to an hour. Once your order is placed, it will take a few weeks before it can be installed, but then installation will only take a couple of hours. 

Compact Appliances

The growth of the tiny home industry has improved the offerings for compact appliances. The days of having a small studio apartment with a giant full-size stove in it are over, thankfully.

Common appliances made for your micro kitchen are more accessible than ever to find. For example, you can get slim refrigerator units that are less than 22”. With three small burner cooktops, slim range hoods, and tankless water heaters, you can squeeze more appliances into a tiny kitchen to make it more functional than ever.

These days, you don’t have to sacrifice style when it comes to finding a compact appliance, either. Appliances made for efficiency kitchens possess just as much style as the standard size appliances.

Move Your Pantry Out of the Kitchen

Dry food and canned goods storage takes up a considerable amount of space, and there are other places that you can store it. For example, consider a root cellar, storage under a window seat, and even storage under your bed.

If you have to use another space outside of your kitchen, consider using the same space-saving solutions you would normally use for a pantry, like a roll-out shelf. But, again, there is no reason it has to be hard to access.

Utilize Wall Space

If you have a tiny kitchen, you should have as many cabinets in it as you can fit. If wall space is left, consider using it to hang something on. Make sure to maximize every square inch of storage space you can.

Many kitchen organizers can hang on the wall, such as magnetic knife strips, plate racks, and utensil hangers. In a tiny kitchen, counter space is prime real estate, so try to find a place for everything, even if it means using more of your wall space.

Other Helpful Tips for Your Tiny Kitchen

You can have a tiny functional kitchen, and you might even come to enjoy the boundaries of a tiny kitchen. But, of course, a tiny kitchen needs to be kept clean and organized, otherwise, it quickly becomes unusable. The good news is that since it is tiny, it is easier to clean!

It can also be helpful to use light colors to make your micro kitchen seem a little bigger. It’s not that you’ll fool anyone, but a tiny dark kitchen can seem much smaller than a bright one.

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June 3, 2022
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